Still no release date! Alas, we’re all looking forward to Retro City Rampage which is apparently going to be released this month but there’s no sign exactly when, or which platforms that will be (all of the announced?) yet. Its developer, Brian Provinciano, has taken to the PlayStation Blog to talk about the game’s development on the PS3 and PS Vita, giving some insight of the game’s subtle tweaks for Sony’s latest handheld and showing off some dandy looking footage on it.
While the PS3 version of the game and the many others, will have tube TV simulators to give it that old CRT feel, the PS Vita has obviously been altered a bit to suit the smaller screen. While the tube filters aren’t included in the standard mode, the Vita’s second mode does include it as it incorporates the whole widescreen at the sacrifice of smaller pixels. To make up for the lack of old screen effects then, the Vita comes with classic dot-matrix simulation filters for that Game Boy/Game Gear nostalgia. On top of that, the color mode can be changed to yellow-green monochrome, all red and loads more if you so wish. Don’t worry PS3 players, you can also fiddle with colors.
Of course, being the retro game it is, the buttons and D-Pad are where it’s all at, but the Vita’s touchscreen is used to make menu navigation much easier, though you can choose to not use this. If you own both the PS3 and Vita then you’ll be glad to hear that Retro City Rampage supports continuous play. This means that you can play the same saved games across both platforms, as well as drag leaderboards over too.
Now it’s time to have a look at that PS Vita gameplay footage, which is taken from PlayStation <3 Canada in Toronto.
More information on Retro City Rampage can be found over on the game’s official website.
To Celebrate and promote indie game developers, IGM is holding a 7-day Game Challenge. Developers will spend no more than 7 days working on a game prototype that they will submit to www.indiegamesday.com.
There will be no entry fees, but your game will be made freely available on www.indiegamesday.com for download/judging. Players will download and play your free game and vote on a winner. The winner will receive a cash prize with the hopes that the money will go towards further developing and crafting an awesome independent game.
The theme was just announced so you have a little over 4 weeks to spend some time on a kick ass game that relates to this theme:
That’s it! The theme is that picture – interpret and create your game accordingly. In case you missed it, here are the rules for this year’s challenge:
Each game must be made in LESS than seven days
Each game must be based around the competition theme (the picture above)
All entries must be submitted no later than 11:59pm (EST) on the 17th of June.
Each game must be playable on PC, Mac or browsers (no mobile games)
Each game will be made freely available on the indiegamesday.com website
Judging will run from June 18th to June 22nd, and will be open to the public, with the winner being announced on IndieGamesDay.com on International Indie Games Day (June 23rd).
The winner will receive a cash prize of at least $250 (stay tuned for more info on prizes)
All games and intellectual property stays with the developer
The Indie Game Magazine reserves the right to offer these games for free on the website IndieGamesDay.com for the public to download them and judge them.
The Indie Game Magazine will inform all affected developers if further usage of the game is planned
It’s always a sobering moment of piteous self-degradation for every young upstart when they realise that their long-held dreams of space travel fade into non-existence alongside their hopes of running for President, securing a respectable career and engaging in a symbiotic member of the opposite sex before withering away unloved and unnoticed until the day they meet their unheralded demise.
Thankfully, there’s always the reassuring sense of escapism afforded to us by video games. The mouse, keyboard or control pad now serve as magical conduits from hands to screen, allowing us to realise our late-dormant longing for space conquest within a virtual medium, which is probably why we’ve been inundated with so many space combat games over the years. And after a while, repetition breeds stagnation, and stagnation breeds disinterest.
CSiS, the product of the creative endeavours of Felix Caffier, Micha Pfeiffer and Wolfgang Reichardt, aims to reinvigorate the world (or should I say universe?) of space shooter frolicking by letting players loose in a variety of multiplayer game modes set in the vast reaches of outer space. Running on the A7 3D Game Studio Engine, the game boasts five separate game modes, including traditional deathmatches and co-operative missions, in which admirable performances are rewarded with the in-game cash required to access upgrades and equipment bonuses.
This might be one of the biggest things happening in the indie game scene for the surrounding months. Because We May is set up by Ron Carmel of 2D Boy and its principle and upcoming action will make quite the splash.
The belief behind Because We May is that developers should set their own prices for games and not decided by anyone else. Due to the rise of many digital stores, indie developers have been fortunate to live out this dream. On the official site it reads:
“We rely on the ability to promote our games for our livelihood and control over pricing is an important tool for this purpose.”
We’re living in good times for developer freedom but now is the time to acknowledge that. So, from May 24th to June 1st, Because We May is celebrating the online stores that allow indie game developers to set their own prices by providing huge discounts on many, many indie games across PC and and mobile. If you’re a developer you can opt for your game to be a part of this by registering your game on this page before May 22nd.
What games are already participating? Well, some of the titles include World of Goo (of course), Braid, Avadon: The Black Fortress, Swift*Stitch, Frozen Synapse, Vessel, Sword & Sworcery EP, Spirits, EDGE, Canabalt…seriously, we’re barely scratching the surface here.
You can see full lists of the game for each platform by clicking on their respective links:
This is really a rather exciting week full of discounted, high quality games so you should most definitely be excited. You can get games for a discounted price and you’ll be supporting indie game development too. Everyone’s a winner!
You can find out more information on Because We May over on the official website.
Originally made for that wonderful Indie Buskers game jam, The Sun Is Deadly has since been updated and spruced up with more levels. If you missed it the first time around, then you can now buy it over on IndieCity.
The inspiration for TSID is quite clear – Thief: The Dark Project. You’ll be playing as a vampire with a craving for blood (who would have guessed?!) but, as the game’s title clearly points out, sunlight isn’t so good for your pale skin. The game takes around a a number of towns which house your many victims. There are guards hanging around and they will bust your bloodsucking tendencies if they catch sight of you, so sinking your fangs into them first should be a priority.
The main problem that TSID presents to the player is navigation, but you do have the power of telekinesis fortunately, with which you can pick up large objects in order to carve a safe path of shadows to the next juicy neck. Your ultimate goal, apart from getting through the levels in record time (obviously), is to find the Golden Box of Jewels in order to lure the most beautiful virgin to your graveyard. Virgins love jewels.
If you bought the Indie Buskers bundle then you’ll already have access to TSID, otherwise you can pick it up for £1.20 over on IndieCity – quite the bargain.
More information on The Sun Is Deadly can be found over on its official website.
Released just a couple of weeks ago, Nekonote’s Balloon is rather adorable. Pretty challenging on the old brain too when it wants to be. Your goal is simple, your journey will not quite be as such, though it will be cheek-achingly chirpy.
Pesky kids, always running off with those red balloons. No pressing buttons to “Jason” here though, just a series of single screen puzzles if you’re going to catch up with this cutesy blob. The means of which will be performed with the familiar point and clicking that we know so much. Click on apples, cogs, levers, tiles and even drag keys into locks. Every time you beat a puzzle, the your little friend, the playable character, will give out a little “yay” and sometimes those you have helped out may even give you a “thank you”. You’ve never known excitement and manners like it!
Balloon has a pretty decent difficulty curve, and most of the solutions to its puzzles are fairly obvious – there’s no pixel hunting thank goodness – it’s the pulling off of these solutions which become tasking on the squishy thing in your head.
Unfortunately, it’s very likely that you’ll get stuck and where to is fairly predictable as there is lack of direction in one or two places, or a mechanic doesn’t quite work well enough (the cliff part if you know it). Nevertheless, with a soundtrack that wouldn’t go amiss in ilomilo and a lovely textured (if a little devoid of color) set of visuals to cute your way through, Balloon is definitely worth a playthrough.
You can play Balloon for free in your browser by following this link.
There’s not too many games set on the moon, and if they are it’s usually in some quirky fashion – certainly not a fairly serious turn-based strategy experience. Bucking the trend is Moon Rising, which slips quite neatly into said genre. Set in 2099, the moon has become a place of high interest for Earth’s super powers due to the mining of its hidden resource, Helium-3.
As you can guess, this has led to there being quite a battle on the moon (such a safe place for one), and this is where you come in; attempting to take over five key areas for mining Helium-3. The setting of the Moon and battles between mining astronauts makes for a fairly weird principle, at least visually – you never see astronauts floating about in mid-battle.
The game will be realised as a single player campaign, but Moon Rising will also have a multiplayer mode too. Speaking of which, you can sign up for the closed beta right now on this page.
The game has only just been announced by the developers but with its unique setting and a promising trailer, it’s not looking half bad at all. We’re interested to see how this develops, at least.
Moon Rising is expected to release in Q4 of 2012 and will be available on PC, Mac and mobiles too. More information can be found on the game’s official website.
KERACK! That’s the sound of lightning which can only mean another Indie Royale Lightning Pack has struck. This one is different though. Why? All proceeds go to charity. One. Hundred. Percent.
For the next 100 hours you can be very generous by buying games at an outrageously low price. Say what? Yep. Not a bad deal – Indie Royale’s All-Charity Pack includes four indie games and three chiptune albums (because they’re the indie-est?), the latter requiring a $7 minimum spend.
Osmos is available for Windows, Mac and Linux while the other three are Windows only. If you’re looking for Steam keys, then you’ll get them for all of the games except The Shiva. Direct downloads and Desura unlocks are included for all four games.
If you pay $7 or up for the Royale then you’ll also receive some chiptune music in album form. To be specific: Jake Kaufman’s ‘FX4′ (Retro City Rampage composer), Disasterpeace’s ‘Level’ (Fez composer), and a brand new EP from 6955 called ‘IN1ep’ (Super T.I.M.E Force composer).
You can grab The All-Charity Pack over the next 100 hours over on the official Indie Royale website.
Rami Ismail of Vlambeer has developed an easy-to-use tool for putting together press kits for developers. We highly recommend that you give it a look and begin using it when contacting any members of the press about your game.
As we’re on the receiving end of the many press releases about indie games, we know that there is definitely some room for assistance in this field. This is why presskit() (pronounced ‘do presskit’) has been made available to the public; making communication between developers and press easier. Even if you’re a press kit master, putting together press kits is still a right slog, right? Well, what if you could put together a whole press kit with ease in just an hour or less?
The tool was originally developed by Rami for personal use when promoting Vlambeer’s games, but after some interest from other indie developers was initiated, it was clear that this would have great benefit if released publicly. So, Rami set out to make it as simple as possible by collating feedback from developers and members of the press and tweaking accordingly.
That process is now over and presskit() is available for free, though it is in beta form which means that it’s fully functional but not everything has been fully tested. Understandably, Rami accepts no responsibility for any problems that might occur after installation – which are unlikely to pop up we should add.
Grab your free download of presskit()right here and visit the official website for more information. We’ll be looking out for plenty of press kits coming our way!
PixelJunk 4am has now been released onto the PSN Store at a price of $9.99, you’ll also need to invest in a PlayStation Move controller if you don’t already own one.
Described as a Virtual Audio Canvas, PixelJunk 4am allows players to create music with a swish of the PlayStation Move. It’s a great looking innovation that makes the process of creating music much more accessible and seemingly more fun (or at least physical). More and more we see indie developers experimenting with creative music games, and as Jon Brodsky said at Indie Connect, there’s still a lot of things to discover in this fairly empty field of development, all of it very experimental and exciting.
At launch, 4am comes with seven songs, six visualizers, 38 variations, 10 events and over 190 different sounds to play with. It also supports in-game Twitter and Facebook connectivity so you can promote your performances; little odd that one. If you’re not up for all the swishing then you can also use 4am as a stand-alone visualizer and let it provide a scene to your own music on your PS3.
If you haven’t seen it in action already, then PixelJunk 4am may seem a little odd. The video below should alleviate any confusion – it seems to be very user-friendly once the player learns the various wrist-spins and where the instruments are located. This is just one controller too – you can dual wield as well, as if calling a plane in for landing.
More information on PixelJunk 4am can be found on the game’s official website.