Indie game news, reviews, previews and everything else concerning indie game development.

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Trailer Thursday June 13th Results! 11 New Indie Game Trailers!

Trailer Thursday

From now until the end of time, The Indie Game Mag will host Trailer Thursday, in which indie game developers (and fans) send in trailers, gameplay videos, or whatever they want, to us and we feature them in this weekly article!

This week we have eleven videos for you to check out!

1.) Little Nick
2.) ChronoBlade
3.) Moebius
4.) Frozen State
5.) Harvest
6.) X Orbetek II
7.) Attack of the Gelatinous Blob
8.) Krog
9.) The Wizard’s Lair
11.) Dino Dinner
12.) Ethan: Meteor Hunter


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Stylish Shoot-’em-up ‘Skies’ Out Now On Desura

Indie studio Cuve Games have recently released Skies, exclusively via Desura. The shoot-’em-up title is the first release by the two-man French team, and boasts more than your average shooter; it includes an adventurous storyline, a trading system, ship upgrades, and some element of crew recruitment. Besides this, it is also very easy on the eye, as you can see for yourself in the trailer below.


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From Our Backyard: ‘Out There’ A Narrative-Driven Journey Through Space

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Exploring the “final frontier” is usually ignored in science fiction games these days, with disturbing dystopias or post-apocalyptic settings often taking priority. That’s why it is always nice to see games like FTL pop out of the blue and inspire developers to look to the stars. Mi-Clos Studios, developer of iOS game Space Disorder, is working on an upcoming space exploration game Out There.

Out There is a beautiful looking game that the developers have told us is heavily inspired by FTL and the classic Masters of Orion. The player will be set “at the ends of an unknown galaxy” and tasked with keeping the main character alive and bringing him home.

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While the screenshots make this game look very FTL’ish, the developers are adding some features that change things up. Most importantly is the game’s narrative. Out There is written by FibreTigre, a popular interactive fiction author with ten years under his belt. There is also a crafting system and the ability to mine planets.

Out There is still early in development, so we have not seen any gameplay videos. We do have a very pretty animated trailer though, with an art style the developers describe as “psychedelic 70s sci-fi comics.”


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‘Fez II’ Announced At E3 Horizon Conference

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Fez II was announced by Polytron, at the Horizon indie game conference earlier today.  Very little information on Fez II has been given beyond Polytron’s involvement. It is confirmed that composer, DisasterPeace, who composed the first game, will return for the sequel. No platforms or a release schedule have been announced.  One thing we do know: developer Phil Fish prefers Roman Numerals over numbers.

Fez was originally announced by Phil Fish on July 17, 2007. The game had many delays but was first released on Xbox Live Arcade on April 13, 2012. Earlier this year, Steam and GOG versions were made for Microsoft Windows. In a Reddit AMA, Phil Fish said that Ouya, Mac OSX, and Linux versions were in production with the possibility of PlayStation Vita or console version in the future.

Phil Fish and Fez were featured in the documentary, Indie Game: The Movie created by James Swirsky and Lisanne Pajot.

Composer of the game DisasterPeace, released two remixes of the soundtrack: FZ: Side F and FZ: Side Z which respectively released before and after the release of Windows version of Fez.

You can purchase Fez for Windows directly from Polytron.

 

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – ‘Fez II’ Announced At E3 Horizon Conference


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‘Frontiers’ Kicks Off June With Funding Campaign


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Indie Intermission Ludum Dare Count Down – Number 2 ‘You Must Escape’

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Today I bring you the runner up from the Ludum Dare 26 competition. You Must Escape is a fantastically fun minimalistic game by GertJohnny in with you must use echolocation to find your way round this unforgiving maze.

You Must Escape really is a triumph in game design as it manages to convey a rather unique gameplay style in a manner to is truly inspired. In You Must Escape you are places in a whole range of dark corridors, the only way you can find the exit is through your footsteps as each footstep produces a noise which allows you to find your way around.

The way the game shows sound is great and it really produces a very unique and interesting feeling to the game. The manipulation of sound is one thing that I feel is quite underutilised in games, or usually falls flat however here it ticks all the right boxes.

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Average play time – 15 minutes

You Must Escape is a highly creative horror puzzle game that really brings sound to the forefront of the game, yet it manages to do so in a sleek and very fun way.

You Must Escape creates enough variety in the game to keep you wanting more yet does not change the game too quickly, thus allowing you to always feel challenged but not alienated.

Be sure to check out You Must Escape online now, it’s a great little time sync. Ludum Dare entry page.

If you are a developer with A fun indie game that can be played over a coffee break, we want to hear from you! Private message us on twitter @IndieGameMag or shoot us an email at editors@indiegamemag.com with the subject “Indie Intermission” and you could be our indie intermission pick of the day!

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – Indie Intermission Ludum Dare Count Down – Number 2 ‘You Must Escape’


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Indie Intermission – ‘EraserLand’ Sometimes Less Is More

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To end the week I thought I would pull yet another game from the Ludum Dare competition. I know I have covered this competition a lot lately but with all the awesome games that have been generated for it I feel this is completely justified.

Today’s game is EraserLand by Little_Polygon and it’s a rather interesting little experiment. The whole idea of EraserLand is to remove certain aspects of the screen to meet certain win conditions, which you find in a very trial and error manner as you wildly erase all manner of things before finding the true way to win the level.

Although a very short game and a game that often feels like it lacks direction the idea is very nice, and something rather different. The style and gameplay really make for a very fascinating game from start to finish.

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Average play time – 5 minutes

EraserLand is a very well thought out game that brings about some rather novel puzzles and some even more creative solutions to the game. In many ways it’s great to see a minimalistic game encourage even more minimalism by making it the main mechanic for the game.

EraserLand can be played online for free. If you would like to find out more or even download an offline version be sure to head to the Ludum Dare site.

If you are a developer with A fun indie game that can be played over a coffee break, we want to hear from you! Private message us on twitter @IndieGameMag or shoot us an email at editors@indiegamemag.com with the subject “Indie Intermission” and you could be our indie intermission pick of the day!

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – Indie Intermission – ‘EraserLand’ Sometimes Less Is More


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Indie Links Round-Up: Among Foes

Spy_Leaks

Ridiculous cloning, surgical simulation, and another chapter in the indie support debate between Sony and Microsoft – in today’s Indie Links.

Cloned at Birth: The Story of Ridiculous Fishing (Polygon)
“The interview is over. The story, told in pieces at least a hundred times in bars, at hamburger joints, on stages and in private circles of up-and-coming game developers, has now been told for the first time in its entirety. It is a story about the little guy getting bullied and making a stand. And winning. It is the story of Ridiculous Fishing, and how two men from the Netherlands rallied the worldwide community of independent game developers to take on the practice of game cloning and reclaim their invention to launch what will become (for a time) the best-reviewed iOS game of 2013.”

Microsoft hasn’t lost touch with indies, insists XBLA dev (Eurogamer)
“Microsoft’s relationship with indie studios remains strong, the developers of forthcoming XBLA title Max: The Curse of Brotherhood have insisted – and while it might seem that the platform holder is losing its grip on indie gaming as Sony attracts more and more developers to PlayStation, there’s plenty going on behind the scenes to ensure that won’t be the case come the next generation.”

Review: Spyleaks (Independent Gaming)
“*wipes sweat off face* Gee, that game can be tough at times. What game am I talking about? Spyleaks, an old-school stealth-puzzle game by HeartBit Interactive using the XNA engine (it is available on XBLIG and on the PC).”

Super Brain Eat 3 (Indie Gamer Chick)
“PlayStation Mobile is to the Vita what Xbox Live Indie Games is to the Xbox 360. Whether that’s a good thing or not is in the eye of the beholder, I suppose. I wasn’t around for the early stages of XBLIG, but based on what I hear from my buddies Ryan, George, and Justin, the early days were nowhere near the desolate wasteland that PSM is turning into. Looking at the slate of recent releases, nothing really has caught my fancy for it. But then again, nothing really caught my eye on iPhone either. My Vita has been getting a bit dusty though. Nothing like my Wii U, which currently wears the same amount of dust as your average mummy.”

The Amusing Messages to Gamers Tucked in Monaco’s Credits (Kotaku)
“Are you planning to steal the wonderful new co-op heist game Monaco? Please consider the above message. It appears in the $15 game’s credits. “

I’m Mexican. Am I Supposed To Be Offended By Guacamelee? (Kotaku)
“I remember being told I was a bad Mexican. To some of the white friends I hung out with, I was one of them. Once someone told me that because I played video games, read science fiction, and spoke with no accent, that I was whiter than they were. Now that was weird. Maybe I should have worn a sombrero or poncho around campus. Maybe then I would have been a Mexicano auténtico. To my extended family, my choppy spanish and awkward adolescence was a sign of my absolute assimilation into a destructive other.”

Wot I Think: Surgeon Simulator 2013 (RPS)
“As a games blogger, the question I am most often asked is: “When are you going to go back to school so that you can get a real job, like an accountant or a doctor?” To which I reply: “Look, Mum, Dad, writing about videogames is a real job now. I’ve paid my rent unaided for at least several years.” Then I show them games like Surgeon Simulator 2013 and ask why I would want to be a real anything, when I can be a simulated everything?”

Live Free, Play Hard: The Week’s Finest Free Indie Games (RPS)
“THIS WEEK: Fridge magnet story engine. 2012 so .exe, 2013 so .ppt. Dinosaur dating sim. “The ONLY LGBT-friendly anglerfish dating sim!””

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – Indie Links Round-Up: Among Foes


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Dev Links: The Next Plateau

PolyVox

Are games art? Are gamers artists? What do you suck at? Is it launching your game? So many questions (and luckily plenty of answers) in today’s Dev Links.

Are Game(r)s Art(ists)? (Gamasutra)
“”Interactivity’s a very interesting word, because it implies that this is something we didn’t do in art before, which is complete nonsense, because the only interesting art experiences are the ones that engage you in that way; in which you are invited to become part of the authorship of something in some way or another. And usually in some more meaningful way than choosing whether to open this door or that door.” - Brian Eno”

What do you suck at? (Develop Online)
“Mike Bithell on why it is important to be aware of the gaps in your game development skills.”

Launch Day 2.0 (AltDevBlogADay)
“I didn’t sleep well the night before our Sunday launch of Vex Blocks. Despite the weeks we’ve had the game in the hands of testers, a new bug had come to light late Saturday evening. While not game breaking it still needed to be addressed. I stayed up working on the problem until solved. Chat messages, frantic on my part, went back and forth between myself and my partner until between the two of us we were able smooth things out. I then prepped the build for the next morning’s launch and finally after a long day allowed myself to push back away from my desk just after 1am. I tried and failed to sleep after that.”

BattleBlock Theater (Beta): User Created Levels (The Behemoth)
“Ah, yes… the BattleBlock Community Theater. Even after 3 years of playwriting levels, how those Beta builders still managed to surprise me! And kill me. And then surprise me again! Whether I was flung through explosions into rooms made out of teleporters or flung through teleporters into rooms made out of explosions, the experience was quite the rollercoastery deathtrap of emotion.”

A tree killed his Granny! Jack is STEAMing (Owlchemy Labs)
“Mobile’s most poplar game is now available on Steam! Stack beards, chug syrup, and rock flannel as you axe your way through the forest on your PC/Mac/Linux machine and make your Granny proud.”

Receiver’s Greenlight Journey (Wolfire Games)
“Receiver was finally released on Steam today — check it out here! There is a one-week launch sale bringing the price down to $3.99. If you already have Receiver or Overgrowth, then you can claim your Steam key on your Humble Store download page (linked from your purchase email). Whenever a game is greenlit, there are always two questions that come up over and over: “How did it take THIS LONG for this game to get greenlit?”, and “How did THIS game get greenlit?” In this post I will try to answer both questions about Receiver!”

New HUD Layout (Krooked Gaming)
“So after a lot of adjustments, I think I’m finally happy with the new HUD. While I have a few concerns about how complicated it may look to new users, it does contain a lot of useful information.”

Indie Tools: PolyVox (IndieGames.com)
“PolyVox is (according to its developers admittedly) “a fast, lightweight C++ library for the storage and processing of volumetric (voxel-based) environments” that can be used for anything from games to scientific applications.””

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – Dev Links: The Next Plateau


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‘Dangerous’ Aims To Bring Local Multiplayer Back To The Masses

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Remember the days before online multiplayer? Your group of friends would huddle around the television screen with wired controllers, trash talking and laughing while giving you the occasional, jovial shove. With online multiplayer changing how we play our games together, few games have been able to achieve the same level of comradery as the pre-internet console era did. But the Columbus-based start up Multivarious Games aims to change that with their game on KickstarterDangerous.

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Dangerous is a two-dimensional action platformer and shooter designed for local multiplayer on the Xbox 360. With an ancient island realized in watercolor as its landscape and local multiplayer as the vehicle, Dangerous is aiming to bring back the best in competitive gaming: with your friends in your living room.

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Multivarious Games’ design sensibilities are inspired by the best competitive classics such as WormsGoldeneyeMario Kart, and Bomberman. With this competitive attitude in mind, development started in 2012 with the creation of a  physics engine that would support the amount of adaptability the developers wanted for the action. The environments feature destructible terrain to allow the unique world to play an important role in the game. If you’re trapped, you can channel water to push your enemies back. If you’re pinned by a sniper, you can shoot off a tree limb or cropping of rocks above them to take them out. By allowing so much freedom in each level and adding in other dynamic elements in the environment, the action is sure to keep you on your toes.

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Dangerous also boasts a hand-drawn, watercolor art-style. The game is still running off of place holder assets at the moment so it’s hard to gauge what the final product will look like, but what the developers have shown so far in their videos looks promising. This visual style will make the set of customizable characters even more exciting. After choosing one of the two factions, either the outsiders or island natives, you build up this character’s strength through multiple fights. During battle, you can acquire new weapons, power-ups, and other character altering items which will alter your character over time as they become stronger, but also let you specialize in different abilities like the use of heavy weapons or lighter, quicker weaponry. At the same time, the character modifiers can be disabled so that everyone can join in the fun at the same level and enjoy a purer experience.