Just days after openly inviting gamers to pirate their copies of Pixel Piracy, the 2D pirate rogue-like developed by Vitali Kirpu is now Greenlit on Steam. Yesterday, the team noted they jumped from being in the top 92% straight into the top 100, and today they’re signing the necessary digital paperwork to sign up as a new Steamworks Partner.
In Pixel Piracy, players take control of a pirate crew and set sail across the open sea navigating through procedurally generated events; encountering ruthless rogues all while trying to enlist new recruits, upgrade their ship, and keep their crew in line. There’s treasure to plunder and other ships to combat, but such is the life of a pirate. Pixel Piracy is currently in alpha and can be purchased through Desura, currently for 20% off. For more information, check out their IndieDB page.
Image & Form, the makers of SteamWorld Dig, which released on the Nintendo 3DS eShop in August, are bringing their Western-meets-steampunk themed mining platformer to the PC on December 5th. The 3DS game was met with outstanding critical success and the PC version looks to improve upon that experience by presenting the game in full HD and adding new content.
In SteamWorld Dig, players tunnel through the Earth in search of gold and other treasure, meeting a charming cast of characters along the way and eventually unearthing an ancient secret. As players dig deeper and deeper, the things you smash with your pickaxe (that is, enemies and earthen materials) get stronger, so upgrades are a must.
Fans of the 3DS version need not fear Image & Form abandoning the platform. The CEO says that “it would be strange to leave the 3DS community; they’ve embraced SteamWorld Dig and carried us, and we owe them a lot.”
SteamWorld Dig will be available on Steam on December 5th tentatively priced at $9.99. 3DS owners interested in getting a taste of it before then can purchase it on the eShop for $8.99.
Chris Hayes, one of our IGM PAX Prime 2013 team members, shares his interview with developer Squad — providing his impressions of their hit Steam Early Access title Kerbal Space Program as well.
You would never know with a game like Kerbal Space Program that the idea came from lead developer Felipe Falanghe making spaceships out of fireworks as a child and having foil astronauts named Kerbals ride them into oblivion. But if you were to watch me learning to play this game, it makes perfect sense. Kerbal Space Program is a game where you build yourself a spaceship, try to launch it past orbit, and explore various planets to research what is out there and expand your technology.
Part of building the spaceship is determining the order that the rocket engages. Fail to do this or build your spaceship incorrectly and you will end up with doom on your hands. For example, my most successful mission had my four booster rockets run in phase 1 and the launch pads detach me in the second phase. Once the fuel burned out I detached the booster rockets in phase 3 and ignited my second booster rocket in phase 4. Once the booster rocket ran out, I detached that in phase 6 to free float in orbit for a while. However, as I never made it this far, I hadn’t planned on making it to orbit. Eventually gravity kicks in and I get drawn closer but phase 7 should save me when I let out my parachute, which doesn’t deploy correctly, and I end up crashing into earth in a fiery blaze of failure.
But even though it took me 24 spaceships, and 32 Kerbals to get this far, it was fun, and only the beginning. Former modder and now technical artist for the game, Chad Jenkins explained that space exploration is another key factor with Kerbal Space Exploration. Successfully returning from a mission with data will allow you to expand your research tree. In addition, how you provide that data matters as well. One example he offered is if we were to say make it up to Mars and get a sample of the planet, we could radio our results back to the planet with nominal scientific progress. However if we were to bring back a chuck of rock to our researchers on the planet, the data will reap bigger benefits. You then use this research to expand your tech tree and available spaceship parts as you see fit.
One of the most mind-blowing aspects of all this is our interview was that Felipe, Chad, and Bob Holtzman were at PAX to judge a tournament for their game not to show it off. The kicker is that Kerbal Space Program is currently available as Early Access and has not their official launch date yet. While there is plenty to do and play around with the game only Sandbox Mode can be played, with a career mode and other features to eventually be implemented.
Kerbal Space Program is available as a Steam Early Access title on Windows, Mac, and Linux — and it’s currently on sale for 40% off through the weekend.
PixelJunk Inc. is a simple concept, with a ton of depth. The sandbox tower defense hybrid has players digging out there own Soup factory, customizing it with a cast of command-accepting robots for gathering supplies and sentries for blasting aliens that are jealous of your gaudy soup factory base.
Lead designer Rowen Parker of Q Games spoke with us about this multifaceted title concerning the manufacturing process of soup:
PixelJunk Inc. is being prepped for a Steam-exclusive Windows PC release later this year, with Mac and Linux ports planned for sometime after.
Earlier this Summer, stealthy puzzle platformer, Gunpoint, was released by Suspicious Developments, lead by Tom Francis. The game was a success, and the costs of development were recouped in mere moments following the game’s availability. Since Gunpoint’s June 3rd release, Suspicious Developments have patched the game numerous times. Now, following the game’s fourth major patch, Francis has announced that in order to get Gunpoint as stable as he’d like it to be, the game will need to be ported to a different game engine entirely.
“I fixed a lot of bugs pretty quickly in the first four patches,” Francis explains in the Gunpoint blog post, “but the last ones left are tougher. Most of them aren’t mistakes in my scripting, they’re fundamental incompatibilities between the engine I used and certain PC configurations.”
Francis goes on to explain that he is looking over three possible solutions, one of which he is currently attempting to do on his own. If his current efforts fail, he will have to choose one of the remaining two plans, neither of which he reveals much information about, —beyond that he’d have to pay someone to do the engine update for him.
The blog update also sees Francis mention Steam Workshop support, for the game’s level designer (an option I found sorely lacking in my review of Gunpoint). The mention of Workshop support is fleeting, but it is still right there in the blog post, indicating that it is high on Francis’ to-do list right behind the engine fix. Workshop utilization would be a great addition to the game, allowing players to easily share the challenge levels they have created within Gunpoint’s level editor. Currently, there is no easy way for players to swap level designs.
Mac and Linux support is briefly mentioned as well, though much like Workshop support, they will only come after the engine upgrade.
Read the full blog post on Gunpoint’s official website.
Today’s Developer Links feature articles on improving the local indie scene, multifaceted development strategies and more.
‘We can do better’: When the local indie scene isn’t inclusive enough (IndieGames.com)
“Someone told me the other day that I’m “one of the most connected people” he knows. He couldn’t understand why I’ve been feeling left out lately, like I don’t belong among the “indie” community or among the local scene here in Toronto.”
Three pronged game development strategy (Positech Games)
“We hear a lot about how the PC market is on the way down, Dell are making less money, Microsoft keep making stupid decisions (someone sack ballmer and put in someone with a clue as to what they are doing please). and meanwhile everyone’s favorite tax-dodger apple is making more money than any sane human can imagine. Desktop PC’s are out, and tablets are in. Mobile is king. Just look at any number of crazy charts etc…”
The Behemoth’s 10th Year Anniversary (The Behemoth)
“Back in 2003, a small group of hardcore gamers got together with the modest goal of bringing craftsmanship and originality back to the game industry. On May 27th, 2003, The Behemoth was finally realized when we submitted the paperwork to become a legally recognized company.”
Serious, Not Solemn (Jonas Kyratzes)
“This is one of main principles behind the Lands of Dream games.”
May Post-mortem (Unknown Worlds)
“Recently, Brian re-started the monthly Unknown Worlds Post-Mortem. This is an event which draws together game development folk from around the San Francisco Bay Area, and aims to share knowledge and experience. People show off prototypes, tell stories, drink beer, and give micro-talks on a topic of their choice. Those micro-talks are recorded, and each speaker has kindly given permission for their talk to be presented on the UWE YouTube channel! Here are this month’s entries, for your enjoyment.”
Comic Con Booth 229 – Day 1 (The Behemoth)
“The Behemoth had a busy first day at Comic Con. We had Hatty out from 5PM to 7PM, as he’ll be doing for Saturday as well. Then after the show we had our private 10th Anniversary Party, since we hadn’t had a chance to celebrate yet. We’ll be putting up party photos and Day 2 photos soon.”
Scoregasm Steam Price Match! (Charlie’s Games)
“Scoregasm’s on sale at Steam at the minute ( you can take a look here: Scoregasm on Steam), so I figured i’d match their discount here!”
Radial Games is hiring (Andy Moore)
“Andy’s List of Serious Business Responsibilities(tm) is getting so long that it’s becoming difficult to properly prioritize and focus on things. So I’m officially taking Radial Games to the “next level” and hiring my first local (Vancouver, BC) employee!”
The rickety short-term fix that is Steam Greenlight has given the nod to a new grouping of indies, highlighted by Phoenix Online Studios’ tension-filled adventure episodic Cognition: An Erica Reed Thriller and Exato Game Studios’ customizable combat game Guncraft.
Other approvals include platformer Vector, WWI FPS Verdun, adventure title Homesick, mining game Super Motherload, survival affair Day One: Garry’s Incident and Verbis Virtus – a title that has you using audio commands via your mic to cast spells. While Steam launch dates for the vast majority are still to be announced, Exato has already announced that Guncraft has been given a launch date of July 11th.
The game has an art style reminiscent of Minecraft, and an interesting premise: Build a customizable gun block-by-block and then take it for a stroll in multiplayer sandbox madness with classic modes like Deathmatch and CTF for up to 16 players.
In addition to Steam, Guncraft will also be available on Desura, Green Man Gaming, Rain Digital Games, and GamersGate when it launches next week. It can also be pre-ordered now directly through the developer’s website for instant beta access.
Anomaly 2 is a sequel to the critically acclaimed Anomaly: Warzone Earth. Maintaining the core elements of the original, Anomaly 2 adds new features to the single-player campaign and puts player’s skills to a test in a completely unique experience: the tower defense vs. tower offense multiplayer mode!
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About the Video:
Created by Zephyr Moore