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About The IGF is presented by the UBM TechWeb Game Network, which runs the Independent Games Festival & Summit every year at Game Developers Conference. The company (producer of the Game Developers Conference series, and Game Developer magazine) established the Independent Games Festival in 1998 to encourage innovation in game development and to recognize the best independent game developers.

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Archive For August, 2008

Freeware Game Pick: Chatroom (TheJBurger)

August 11, 2008 5:37 AM | Tim W.

Chatroom is a short game designed to simulate an IRC chatroom, created by the developer of La Croix Pan for a friendly One Room One Week competition held in the AGS forums. The story is set in the year 2097, where your character is holed in an underground military bunker with only a working computer to use as means of contact with the outside world.

Save and restore functions can be accessed by pressing the F5 or F7 function key. The game has a proper ending. (hints)

Name: Chatroom
Developer: TheJBurger
Category: Adventure
Type: Freeware
Size: 5MB

Bytejacker: Indie Games Review Show

August 10, 2008 10:08 PM | Tim W.

Bytejacker is a new weekly review show which only rate games available through downloads (XBLA, WiiWare, PSN, PC and even iPods). The great thing about Bytejacker is that they dedicate the latter half of each episode to talk about indie games.

The show is hosted by Anthony Carboni, whose past credits include guest-host appearances on G4TV's Attack of the Show.

Bytejacker: Episode 2
Bytejacker: Episode 1

Trailer: Iji (Remar Games)

August 10, 2008 9:31 PM | Tim W.

Note: Video contains loud music.

A trailer for Iji, an upcoming freeware action platformer by Remar Games (creator of Hero and Castle of Elite). As stated in the video, the game will be released on the 1st of September, 2008.

Iji trailer: high quality version

Freeware Game Pick: Ghosts of Aliens (Swordofkings128)

August 10, 2008 10:13 AM | Tim W.

Ghosts of Aliens is a full-length RPG which has been in production for more than six months, featuring music by one of the developers credited with creating the post-cyberpocalyptic basketball epic, Barkley, Shut Up and Jam: Gaiden. Playing as the ghost of an alien named Atum, the story tells the tale of this restless soul who is given another chance at life, granted that he undertakes a quest to defeat the five Doom Beasts and save the world of Appalathia.

Use the Z key to run or select a menu option, and press the X key to cancel a choice or bring up your inventory screen. Press the left alt and enter key at the same time to switch between windowed and full screen mode. Progress can be saved at any time.

Combat is mostly negligible, as enemies encountered during the early part of the game only requires two hits or less before surrendering to you. Bosses can be easily defeated using your strongest Magle, while Quencheleth are readily available for purchase from item shops located in towns scattered all over Appalathia. There is however one particular dungeon that will most likely cause excruciating frustration, since entering this area inside a tree will end your adventure in less than two seconds if you're not equipped with the Mark IV blocker. In here, players would have to be mindful of their steps as well, as touching traps would pretty much wipe out all party members without warning.

Ghosts of Aliens isn't without faults and bugs, but anyone who is willing to persevere might find a couple of pleasant surprises to be had with this adventure. The RPG Maker 2000 Font Patch can be used to fix font display problems, but note that the program doesn't come with an uninstaller.

Name: Ghosts of Aliens
Developer: Swordofkings128
Category: RPG
Type: Freeware
Size: 60MB
Download mirror: Zshare (ad-supported)

Freeware Game Pick: Genetos (Update)

August 10, 2008 7:51 AM | Tim W.

Genetos is a vertical shooter by Tatsuya Koyama featuring stages with design styles from different eras of arcade gaming classics. Green power-ups would have to be collected to increase the gauge at the bottom of the screen and ultimately culminate in the evolution of your ship, where it will gain additional firepower, new movement directions, bombs and even homing lasers.

Use the cursor keys to move your ship, and tap the Z key to shoot. Press the X key to launch a bomb if available. The current build contains four playable levels. (source: Shoot the Core)

Name: Genetos
Developer: Tatsuya Koyama
Category: Shooter
Type: Freeware
Size: 5MB
Direct download link: Click here

Interview: Matthew Wegner (Flashbang Studios)

August 9, 2008 12:07 PM | Tim W.

[This interview was originally conducted by Travis Boisvenue and has been reprinted here with his permission. You can find the original article and more indie game developer interviews at The Happy Medium.]

Matthew Wegner is the CEO of Flashbang Studios, editor of physics game site, an IGF content director, and an avid unicyclist. Though he has carved a distinct niche in the video game world, he reminds me of Will Wright in a lot of ways. Like Wright, Wegner loves games because they are fun. Fun in the way that inventing rules, or using a chemistry set is fun. They each use the medium to explore the things that fascinate them. Even the way they discuss games is similar: casually, insightfully, and seemingly unaware of how funny they are.

I'm wondering how unicycling inspires your game designs, if at all.

I don't think it directly influences me. The fun thing about unicycling is that when you first start, everything seems impossible. It just feels impossible to even stand on it. Then after that, if feels impossible to turn. Then after that it feels impossible to jump, or go up a curb. It's a fun challenge to do things that are seemingly impossible and then just keep doing them more and more.

Which is kind of how physics games work.

Oh yeah, definitely. There is a certain challenge in unicycling that I like to find in physics games. In Ski Stunt Simulator, one of my favourite games, it seems impossible to do a flip or even simple challenges, but after you play the game for hours it's easy to do the things that once seemed so hard.

Freeware Game Pick: War Bus (Update)

August 9, 2008 12:01 PM | Tim W.

Note: Contains strong language and flashing images which may cause photosensitive epileptic seizures.

War Bus is a frantic arena shooter by Oddbob that presents the player with a choice. Shoot or be shot. With just the one life at your disposal and the odds stacked against you both in the number of enemies and with the eye-popping visuals, you'll need all your wits to survive.

Battle double decker busses, diggers and handbags unleashed by the alien hordes, all armed to the teeth with laser beams and raging with beastly intent of killing the player. Invoke the spirit of light entertainment by shooting sad clouds to clear the arena and earn yourself some space to breathe.

This update features graphical updates, a new soundtrack, gamepad support and several bug fixes. (gameplay video)

Name: War Bus
Developer: Oddbob, Barry Island
Category: Shooter
Type: Freeware
Size: 5MB
Download page: Click here (mirror)

Freeware Game Pick: Calamity Annie (Update)

August 9, 2008 9:35 AM | Tim W.

Anna anthropy's Western arcade shooter gets a significant update - changes include new additions, bug fixes, secret reveals and a high score display. (design documents)

Name: Calamity Annie
Developer: auntie pixelante
Category: Action
Type: Freeware
Size: 5MB

Interview: Jonathan Blow, David Hellman (1UP)

August 8, 2008 3:13 AM | Tim W.

Note: video contains strong language and massive spoilers.

Jonathan Blow and David Hellman talking to the 1UP crew about their new XBLA release, Braid. Avoid watching this video if you've not completed the game.

There is also a lengthy interview with Jonathan Blow on The SavyGamer Podcast, where they discuss his working relationship with Microsoft, the pricing issue, and a rough release date for the PC version. The chat starts at the thirty-minute mark. (direct download link, right-click to save)

1UP Show: Braid Review (12 mins)
1UP Interview: Braid (4 mins)
TSG Podcast: Jonathan Blow interview

Browser Game Pick: Top Spinner (Benzido)

August 7, 2008 7:06 AM | Tim W.

Top Spinner is a new physics-based action game which involves using a bat to keep balls headed your way from touching the stumps. Strike rate is calculated by dividing the points you've acquired with the number of balls you've managed to hit out of the area. Getting balls to touch a high risk zone awards more runs.

Name: Top Spinner
Developer: Benzido
Category: Action
Type: Browser

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