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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 May, 2009

Freeware Game Pick: SYNSO2: Squid Harder (Oddbob)

May 18, 2009 3:00 AM | Tim W.

Squid Yes, Not So Octopus 2: Squid Harder is an arena shooter created by Robert D. Fearon, featuring glowy graphics and eye candy that (at maximum setting) is guaranteed to push the limits of any computer setup you may have. A host of configuration options are included, allowing players to change screen size, toggle autofire, activate motion blur, or even enable the practice mode where novices could take the game for a spin without worrying about dodging bullets or colliding with enemies.

Joysticks and gamepads are automatically supported, although you could use the keyboard to play as well. The current version available for download is a beta release that will be updated with a fifth world sometime this week. (source)

Browser Game Pick: Underworld Trip (Yoshio Ishii, Yossa)

May 17, 2009 11:08 PM | Tim W.

Nekogames' Underworld Trip is a platformer created in a style that is similar to Terry Cavanagh's Don't Look Back, where players will attempt to figure out what has happened to them by journeying deeper into the realm of the dead.

Throughout your adventure you will encounter numerous traps and obstacles which kills instantly on contact. There is no health system to allow for second chances, although you can restart from the beginning of a particular scene at any time with the use of the R key.

There are a total of eight stages to play and six single screen endings to discover, but you would have to replay the entire game starting with the first level in order to view another short end sequence. (ending requirements)

Browser Game Pick: Minecraft (Markus Persson)

May 17, 2009 4:16 PM | Tim W.

Markus Persson's Minecraft is a block-based sandbox building game originally inspired by Infiniminer, but one that requires no installation of any software to play. A Java-enabled browser is all that is needed, and though the current alpha version does not have multiplayer features yet the developer has promised that new single and multiplayer game modes will be added very soon.

You can add or remove blocks using the left mouse button. Right-click to switch between removing or adding blocks, and use the numeral keys 1, 2, 3, 4 and 6 to change block type. Creative players can build anything from houses, mazes, towers and even castles with their own moats and bridges with just a little time spent on construction.

Minecraft development blog

Light of Altair Demo Available

May 16, 2009 12:00 PM | Michael Rose

We mentioned this game last month and now you can give the demo a gander along with the above new trailer.

The official site describes the game as "a sci-fi colony building simulation that tells the story of man's first expansion into the stars. A fun and challenging mix of colonization and combat set in the near future." If you find you have quite a thing for the demo, the full game can be pre-ordered from Direct2Drive with 25% off, making it $11.25.

Release date is the 4th June.

Round-Up: Gamasutra Network Jobs, Week Of May 15

May 16, 2009 11:27 AM | Simon Carless

In this round-up, we highlight some of the notable jobs posted in big sister site Gamasutra's industry-leading game jobs section this week, including positions from Blizzard, Blue Castle, Ubisoft and more.

Each position posted by employers will appear on the main Gamasutra job board, and appear in the site's daily and weekly newsletters, reaching our readers directly.

It will also be cross-posted for free across its network of submarket sites, which includes content sites focused on online worlds, cellphone games, 'serious games', independent games and more.

Some of the notable jobs posted in each market area this week include:

Indie Game Pick: Downfall (Harvester Games)

May 16, 2009 10:30 AM | Tim W.

Downfall is a horror adventure game created with Chris Jones' AGS engine, featuring hand-drawn background art and original soundtrack by Remigiusz and Michal Michalski. The story is about a couple who decides to stay the night in an old hotel before resuming their journey home the next day, although things start to turn weird when you wake up the next morning to discover your partner missing without a clue of her current whereabouts.

Normally this shouldn't bother anyone but after an argument that Joe (the main character) and Ivy (your partner) have had before retiring to bed, it is now your responsibility to find her just to make sure that everything is fine. Searching the hotel you will begin to realize that it houses a couple of dark secrets no one should ever discover, but to save Ivy you must leave no stone unturned, even when rational thought is telling you to turn tail and flee from the hotel as quickly as you can.

The game boasts a simple GUI interface that does away with complicated verb text, with all inventory items accessible by moving the pointer towards the top half of the screen. Examining or interacting with objects and characters require only a click of the left or right mouse button, while all conversation choices that Joe could say to another person are presented in a list at the bottom of the window.

Most puzzles require figuring out which item should be used to overcome a specific problem or obstacle, and thankfully there are no combination code, colour, symbol or sliding tile puzzles to be found anywhere in the game. A minor complaint is that one or two collectibles don't stand out enough from the background, and you could easily miss something if you do not carefully comb through each area with your mouse to find objects that will be of importance later in your adventure.

It should be noted that Downfall features a lot of violence, gore, graphic scenes, strong language and even some nudity. A short demo is available to download from FilePlanet, and the full game can be purchased from Direct2Drive.

Browser Game Pick: Super Karoshi (Jesse Venbrux)

May 16, 2009 7:10 AM | Tim W.

Jesse Venbrux is back with the fifth chapter in the popular Karoshi series, and his second Flash browser game to feature everyone's favorite protagonist with the trademark blue suit. In Super Karoshi you not only have to figure out ways to commit suicide but occasionally assist other similarly-looking characters to do the same as well.

Unlike Karoshi Suicide Salaryman, nearly all of the puzzles to be found in this release are original and have never been featured in previous iterations. There are roughly sixty stages to play in total.

Preview: Duality ZF (Xona Games)

May 15, 2009 11:44 PM | Michael Rose

Duality ZF is a space shmup coming soon to Xbox LIVE Community Games. The trailer is just above.

What really attracted me to this game is how polished it looks, plus some of those game modes... 4 player dual control? 8 ships blasting around the screen at the same time? Bullet Hell mode? Erm... gimme?

If this is your kind of thing, it'll cost 400 MS Points when it's released.

And Yet It Moves Developer Claims 95.5% Piracy Rate

May 15, 2009 8:23 AM | Michael Rose


In an interview with Colin Robinson over at Gamer Limit, indie developer Felix Bohatsch has claimed that the piracy rate for recently released platformer And Yet It Moves is a staggering 95.5%.

Felix explained:

"We currently have a bootlegging rate from approximately 95.5% which basically means for every game we sell there are 22 cracked version being played... our bootlegging rate is really very bad and worse than we expected. We think that this is mainly because of the price point."

Of course this rate is most likely less than estimated due to unforeseeable circumstances - for example, a legitimate player installing the game on multiple computers - however this figure is still very disheartening and trumps even the 90% piracy rate claim by 2D Boy on World of Goo last November (which, of course, they later changed to 82%).

Read the whole interview over at Gamer Limit and check out our review of this lovely little puzzler.

Browser Game Pick: Cat Cat Watermelon (Lexaloffle)

May 14, 2009 8:38 PM | Michael Rose


It's time for some Thursday balancing fun! Take your typical 'take all these objects and turn them into a tower' game, inject lots of cats and watermelons and hey presto, you're playing Cat Cat Watermelon!

Initially created as a Ludum Dare entry with fellow contestants haXe and physaxe, Cat Cat Watermelon is a must-play because a) fitting slices of watermelon between cats ears is just so darn cute, b) the victory music is too catchy for its own good and c) when you complete a level, your tittering tower of tabbies is demolished in the most satisfying manner.

Play it now on Lexaloffle.

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