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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 March, 2009

Browser Game Pick: Bloody Fun Day (Urbansquall)

March 12, 2009 11:38 AM | Michael Rose


Bloody Fun Day is a strategic arcade game where players control the Reaper as he ploughs his way through little critters. Everytime Death sticks his scythe into one of the creatures, he gains points but loses health. Destroying red creatures will bring his life back up.

Each set of creatures killed leave behind eggs which need to be left alone to hatch into even more critters. Building up points also gives Death special abilities which can be activated in order to grab even more points. It's all about bagging as many points as possible before you run out of life.

The game mechanics work really well and it's a very nice concept. There's a tutorial to get you going and a couple of game modes to choose from. Play it over at Kongregate.

IEEE Ask Developers to Save the Earth

March 12, 2009 10:39 AM | Michael Rose

earth.jpgThe Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers are running a game creation competition with some fancy prizes. Create a game which shows how real-world events affect the Earth and impact the population and you could bag yourself $20,000.

Sponsored by the likes of the DigiPen Institute of Technology, the 'Save Earth Game' competition has two different tiers to enter into. The first way to win is to simply 'suggest an idea for a computer game to show how using earth observations can make the world a better place'. No coding is necessary and the winner will grab them a cash prize plus the chance to attend a computer game workshop at DigiPen Institute of Technology in Redmond, Washington. The entry deadline is April 10, 2009, so if you are thinking of entering, you'd better get your skates on!

The second contest is the playable game design contest. Available to both individuals and teams, you must 'create a game for players to use Earth Observations of our environment for solving issues of the world around us'. You need to get your proposals for ideas in by June of this year, and those who qualify have from August 2009 to August 2010 to create and submit their game. The winner will receive a whopping $20,000, plus an expense-paid trip to the GEO 2010 Summit.

For more information on the competition, head over to the SaveEarthGame site where you'll find rules for the contest and the like.

Browser Game Pick: Leaf Blight (Terrapin Games)

March 12, 2009 3:01 AM | Michael Rose


Leaf Blight is a puzzle game based around picking dead/dying leaves off trees to keep the branches healthy. Leaves can be pulled off in bunches as long as they are the same colour along the same branch. Gameplay starts off fairly easy with only a couple of different colours to begin with, but the puzzles start to become more tricky as certain sets of leaves need to be removed at specific points to stop bad ones spreading.

Production feels a little low (check out the Comic Sans-style text used) but it's a nice little thought-shaker with some great ideas. It's got plenty of levels to plough your way through too.

Check it out on the Terrapin Games site. There's also a level editor so you can make your own tree puzzles.

Crane Wars: Next Flashbang Studios Game?

March 12, 2009 12:06 AM | Michael Rose

The Flashbang guys have posted a new video on their Vimeo account called 'Crane Wars Prototype'. Potentially their next big project, Adam and Matt from the team talk about the idea for the game and show how much they've managed to pull off quite a hefty amount after just 4 days of work.

It's a whole 23 minutes long so you might want to skip through it a bit, but it's an interesting insight into how they work as a team none-the-less. And if you still haven't got round to trying out their latest game Blush, you really should do.

Browser Game Pick: Music Catch 2 (Reflexive Games)

March 11, 2009 1:13 AM | Michael Rose


Music Catch 2 is a simple, relaxing browser game which asks the player to catch notes with their mouse. The sequel to (would you believe) Music Catch, Reflexive Games have taken a great concept and improved on it, adding a host of beautiful arrangements to listen to and making the game look and play a lot nicer.

Notes appear on the screen in time with the music and it's your job to rake them all in via the mouse. It's as challenging as you want it to be - high scores aren't the name of the game here, just enjoying the experience. The visuals really are quite beautiful for such a simple flash game and coupled with the great musical pieces, Music Catch 2 is a masterpiece.

Give it a play at Armor Games now.

Browser Game Pick: Robokiller (Game Creation)

March 11, 2009 12:45 AM | Michael Rose


Robokiller is a Doom-esque style shooter by some of the students in Carnegie Mellon University's Game Creation Society. Created during their spare time, it's pretty much like your average old-school first-person shooter - but with a twist.

Rather than simply hitting a button to fire, the player must draw with their mouse on enemies to kill them. Initially equipped with a handy welding gun, deadly robots can quickly be rendered defunct via gorging out their circuitboards. It's a really nice idea, and of course the game is a little jerky, the music is unbearably repetitive and the keyboard controls are difficult to use à la your favourite shooters from days gone by.

Just be warned - it takes a rather long time to load, so you might find yourself sat contemplating life while you wait. Or not. Give it a play over on the Game Creation site.

GamePro To... Publish Independent Games?

March 10, 2009 4:26 AM | Michael Rose


U.S. consumer magazine and website GamePro is preparing to enter into the world of game publishing - more specifically and oddly, independent game publishing.

Under the guise of GamePro Labs, they are aiming to help some of the latest indie development talent out there, working on a variety of formats including XNA, iPhone, the Playstation Network and, of course, the PC. GamePro claims that "by letting us handle all of the sales and marketing for your products, you get more time to code".

They are currently taking applications from any budding developer ready to sign their life away - presumably for a cut of the resultant royalties. Developers will not only find their game being published under the GamePro brand, but also have access to perks as regular promos in GamePro magazine, developer access to their community, and tools to promote your games, apparently.

GamePro will apparently only be taking 'a select number of games to publish each year', so for more information - or at least a submission form - head over to the GamePro Labs site.

Browser Game Pick: Tetris HD (Unknown)

March 10, 2009 1:36 AM | Michael Rose


This really shouldn't be called Tetris HD, rather Grand Canyon Tetris, or maybe Time-wasting Tetris. Tetris HD (or Tetoris) is quite simply a huge resolution, widescreen version of the game we know and love and we warn you now, trying to get even just one line is a mission in itself.

We advise having a look at it, thinking that's a really bad idea and then giving its opposite Alleytris a go instead. Even trying to die in that big open space is pretty impossible. Screenshots below if you manage it!

Secret Exit Do Not Announce 'Stair Dismount Touch'

March 10, 2009 1:18 AM | Michael Rose


Only recently did we introduce you to Ouch!, a game for the iPhone in which throwing a small person would score you points. And only recently did it remind us of the original Stair Dismount and make us wish for an iPhone version.

Then today some divine intervention occured and Secret Exit announced Stair Dismount Touch! Or didn't announce it as the case may be. In a forum post at Touch Arcade titled 'The Official Thread of Denial and Misinformation', the guys from Secret Exit completely did not announce the game whatsoever and had this to say:

"If such a game existed, it might theoretically be a small-scale evolution from the original Stair Dismount - with perhaps support for custom faces on Mr. Dismount. It would be foolish to add a button for taking screenshots into the game, that would only make it easy to... take screenshots. Any such speculations should be dismissed for being redundant."

For those still quite confused, this is their own special way of saying 'Stair Dismount Touch is Coming Soon!'. Check out the forum post for more information.

Freeware Game Pick: Sew 'Em Up (Kian Bashiri)

March 9, 2009 11:57 PM | Tim W.

Sew 'Em Up is a stitching simulator with an arcade feel to it, created by the famed developer of IGF finalist You Have to Burn the Rope. The game is surprisingly relaxing to play, although floating buttons do add a bit of challenge by bouncing you off your path whenever you collide with one. Your performance is rated by the amount of thread used to stitch all the patterns, but for players who can't get enough of the intense action there's even a map editor included to appease all your c*ck drawing needs.

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