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


Issue 24: August 2012 is on Sale Now!

Check out a brand new issue of IGM! This issue features the review of the highly anticipated XBox Live Arcade game, Spelunky. There’s also a full recap of the Rezzed 2012 PC game conference including an interview with Tengami creator. Other articles include coverage of Blackwell Asylum, Exodus, La Mulana, Init, Gateways, Endless Space, Compromised and an interview with Cardinal Quest 2 creators.

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Issue 24: August 2012

By Mike Gnade in Indie Game Magazine

34 pages, published 7/25/2012

Check out a brand new issue of IGM! This issue features the review of the highly anticipated XBox Live Arcade game, Spelunky. There’s also a full recap of the Rezzed 2012 PC game conference including an interview with Tengami creator. Other articles include coverage of Blackwell Asylum, Exodus, La Mulana, Init, Gateways, Endless Space, Compromised and an interview with Cardinal Quest 2 creators. Stay up to date with all the latest indie game…

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Source: The Indie Game Magazine – Issue 24: August 2012 is on Sale Now!


Archaeological Records – ‘La-Mulana’ Fan-Book Seeks Contributions

La-Mulana is one of those games that seems to make people want to tell stories, and share them with friends. From the famous Let’s Plays, to the adventuring image-blogs and more, there’s just something about the sprawling platform-adventure that just generates interesting anecdotes. Long-time fan (to the point of being in the thanks section of the remake’s credits) Pauli ‘MadamLuna’ Kohberger agrees, and is assembling a fan-book entitled Stories From the Ruins. All it needs are some stories, and that’s where you come in.

There’s a tentative deadline of August 31st on this project, and once all the tales and anecdotes are collected, they’ll all be professionally edited together and distributed as a PDF booklet for all to enjoy. Submissions can be in any visual form, so if you want to draw some inspired art, or just doodle your incoherent rage at an unfair puzzle, go right ahead. If you think you’ve got a story worth telling, then check out the Stories From The Ruins site and shoot off an email. And if you haven’t been lucky enough to play the game yet? Well, it just got a polished, updated and generally improved remake, so go check our review and give it a try. 

Images shamelessly pilfered from the brilliant and adorable La-Momolana image-blog. Many of these illustrations were polished up and used in the official manual for the re-release.

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – Archaeological Records – ‘La-Mulana’ Fan-Book Seeks Contributions


Massive Platform-Adventure ‘La-Mulana’ Remake Hits PC July 13th via Playism

It’s been a long, long time coming, but we’re on the final stretch now. When the long-awaited La-Mulana remake for Wiiware finally passed Nintendo’s complex approval process and was released in Japan, it seemed a sure thing that we’d see it soon. A year later and after no shortage of conspicuous silence, English publisher Nicalis announce that a western release has been cancelled. Since then, developers Nigoro have made two decisions – firstly, to return to the platform that spawned the game, and secondly, to sign up with Playism, an indie localization and distribution firm that has (until now) been localizing western indie games for release in Japan. Now, they’re doing it the other way round. Everybody dance now:

Now that, there, is how you announce a release date. Playism and Nigoro have been kind enough to let me play around with a beta build of the remake, and I can safely say that it’s well worth the money already. Dropping the faux-MSX stylings of the original release, the new version looks to be somewhere in-between late 16-bit and early 32-bit console graphics, reminiscent of Castlevania: Symphony of The Night in many ways. Also like SoTN, the game is a sprawling, non-linear exploration platform puzzle adventure that is notable for taking new players easily 20+ hours to complete their first time through. The PC remake will be moddable, and also includes the DLC that had to be sold seperately on the Wii due to size limitations, which includes the infamously masocore Hell Temple level, and a remarkably extensive boss rush mode.

Fans of the original release don’t have to worry about the game being dumbed down. While the accessibility of the earlier sections of the game has gone up, the difficulty hasn’t changed one iota. Newcomers are advised to talk to Elder Xelpud, who’ll give you a new and useful piece of software for your dungeoneering laptop – a one-way e-mail client which allows him to send you regular hints and tips – but this is entirely optional, and you can play the whole game without using this new hint system. A few additional tweaks have been made to the game, including putting glaring ‘evil eyes’ in the backgrounds of rooms where randomly whipping the walls might bring the wrath of ancient deities upon you, so now you know when to tread lightly. Death still comes quickly until you’ve cleared the first couple of stages, but it feels fairer. Similarly, the puzzles are still very clever, but the cryptic hint messages feel just a tiny bit less obscure than they used to, although this may be due to a higher-quality translation overall.

The biggest change in the remake is the feel of the combat. It’s just smoother, snappier and a little faster-feeling. Enemies animate a lot smoother, and feel more solid when you fight them. The element to get the biggest overhaul is the bosses, though. Previously limited by the pointedly retro style of the game, they’re now exceptionally well animated and detailed. Some that were especially limited by the old sprite style are now completely re-envisioned, making the fights much more active and involved. I’ve not seen all of them in action yet (the game is huge, and I’m rusty), but I have a feeling this quality continues right up to the final battle. We’ll have a full review of the game by the new release date, but from what I’ve seen of this preview build so far, it’s all good.

Update: La-Mulana will cost $15 when it launches next week.

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – Massive Platform-Adventure ‘La-Mulana’ Remake Hits PC July 13th via Playism


‘La-Mulana’ PC Remake To Support Modding

It’s always nice to hear that a game will be officially moddable, and it’s even nicer when it’s a stalwart PC favourite. Nigoro’s La-Mulana made a comparatively huge splash on the nascent indie scene of the mid-2000s, helped kickstart the popularity of the entire ‘Let’s Play’ video concept, and was one of the core inspirations for Spelunky. The updated remake of it got trapped in Wii development hell for quite some time, but now it’s coming home, and this time you can tweak and tune it to your hearts content.

While it sounds like the game won’t be completely customizable according to this official blog post, you should be able to alter all the sound, music, graphics, translation and time-attack stage files to taste. Nigoro themselves suggest that someone try porting all the original version’s graphics and audio to the new edition of the game. The developers also say that they want as many people around the world as possible to play the game, so are completely cool with unofficial translation patches.

Don’t like the new look? Re-retrofy it, then!

There’s no release date on the remake set in stone quite yet, but there’s rumblings that it’s coming out sooner, rather than later. I can say with a dash of mystery and some surprising certainty that the remake is looking spectacular, and is a genuine improvement on the original faux-MSX stylings of the freeware original, which you can find here.

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – ‘La-Mulana’ PC Remake To Support Modding


La-Mulana Remake Still Headed For Wii in US/EU, Returning To PC

This year has been great for indie games, but it wasn’t without it’s disappointments. Nintendo’s handling of indie developers and their Wiiware store in general being two very low points. The remake of Nigoro‘s PC freeware classic puzzle/adventure/metroidvania La-Mulana was completed and promptly made it’s way onto the Japanese Wiiware store, but half a year later and the US and EU releases are still caught up in red tape. All hope is not lost, though. In this apologetic blog update, Nigoro tell us that the Wii version is due soon, but also something much more interesting: It’s coming back home.


La-Mulana New Trailer, Game Releasing Soon on WiiWare

La-Mulana is going to be a great contender for WiiWare’s 2011 Game of the Year, if not Wii’s Game of the Year. Not to trivialize it, but Wii’s having a less than stellar 2011, as most developers seem to have moved onto the HD machine Nintendo will reveal at E3. Fortunately, WiiWare is seeing some great games while on its last leg. La-Mulana, one of those destined greats, is a archaeological historic ruin exploration action game, so it says in Japanese.

The enemy sprites look amazing: smoothly animated, colorful, and, at times, huge. The platforming action looks intense, as well. Check it out:

The trailer reveals that Japanese Wii owners can download the game on June 21 for 1200 Wii Points. Interested in up to date information on its release? Follow La-Mulana on the official website. Otherwise, check out some of the DIY coverage of the game, and go ahead and try the original version for download here.

What do you think of La-Mulana?

Source: Indie Games


La-Mulana: Wii Edition due ‘Soon’. Bosses revealed.

One of the weird and wonderful main bosses from La-Mulana Wii.

One of the weird and wonderful main bosses from La-Mulana Wii.

Things were looking up late last year for the Wiiware port of Nigoro‘s classic PC platform/adventure/puzzle/exploration game La-Mulana, but things fell apart at the 11th hour as issues were discovered, and Nintendo rejected the submitted version. It’s been a few months, but the developers seem confident that they’ve got the kinks worked out. In a recent development blog post, they proudly proclaim ‘We will finish soon!’.


LA-MULANA Pushed to 2011

La-MulanaThe news had been heating up that we were nearing a release date after the development team had submitted their build of LA-MULANA to Nintendo, but after it was rejected and they’ve gone back into testing, LA-MULANA has officially been pushed into 2011.

With countless apologies, the team stated that they’re going to need more time to finish it because “it’s better to enhance the completeness instead of completing it roughly in a hurry.”

I completely agree with them. Don’t needlessly rush a game out. Give it the attention and bug-fixing it requires.

We’ll have more on LA-MULANA in the new year. You can read the official explanation of the delay from the developer.


LA-MULANA for WiiWare is Complete

La-MulanaOn Saturday, the developers of the WiiWare version of LA-MULANA announced that the game is officially complete. They’re now in the process of submitting it to Nintendo and anticipate a release on the download service before the end of the year.

While we wait to get some further information and discover whether or not it will successfully pass review with Nintendo, here’s the last gameplay video they released several months ago:


La Mulana vs. Noitu Love 2 [Tournament]


This is our final day of the round of 32 which means that there will actually be two separate tournaments running today. Crazy, I know! But first, we’ve got a quick update. It seems that Dwarf Fortress has, narrowly, beaten Trine in the round of 32 match up, with only a 4% difference between them. Nice effort from both games! Dwarf Fortress will be going up against either Defense Grid, or Cortex Command in the Round of 16.

Anyway, now that that’s out of the way, let’s get on with today’s first tournament match up between La Mulana and Noitu Love 2.

Up first we have one of the hardest, most challenging Metroidvania indie classics to have ever been released. I am, of course, speaking of La Mulana, the infamous Indiana Jones-esque adventure game that has you exploring all matters of danger-ridden temples.

Face off against La Mulana, however, is none other than indie hit Noitu Love 2, a delightful platforming game that, in a lot of ways, reminds my of the old retro Mega Man games, albeit at a much faster pace. Still, it’s hard to argue against a game as fun as Noitu Love 2.

So which one will it be? Cast your vote now!

Check out the Bracket!

Other Match-Ups running right now!

Galcon vs. Sexy Hiking
Beat Hazard vs. Don’t Shit Your Pants
Passage vs. Machinarium
The Majesty of Colors vs. I Wish I Were the Moon