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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 July, 2009

Indie Game Pick: Chains (2D Engine)

July 6, 2009 7:14 PM | Tim W.

I've seen this game mentioned on a couple of sites now, but was apprehensive about trying the demo out because it appears to be a matching game with physics applied to it (still is). Today it was brought to my attention that 2D Engine's Chains is being sold on Steam for only $2.49 (50% off the original price of $4.99), and that was enough to prompt me to take a look at the bargain-priced title.

The demo carries five playable levels out of the twenty included in the full release, and though it might sound like too little content for a taster, the first few stages will still take at least a good fifteen minutes to beat on your first try. You can choose between three difficulty settings, and there is an option to continue playing even after you've completed a level objective.

Each stage presents a unique challenge, but the one thing that remains consistent is that you'll be asked to remove as many coloured bubbles as you can until a task is completed or time runs out. Some will demand quick reflexes, others will test your puzzle-solving skills, and one particular level in the demo even calls for the player to perform simple mathematical calculations as well.

Whether the game is a definite purchase or not depends on your interest for physics-based puzzlers, but the trial version is certainly worth a try for the half-hour entertainment that it offers. (source: Rock, Paper, Shotgun)

Browser Game Pick: HRmageddon (THUP Games)

July 6, 2009 1:37 PM | Michael Rose


Funded by Adult Swim, HRmageddon is a great office-based strategy game. Two players take it in turns to spread around the office, claiming cubicles as their own and destroying the opposition via staples to the eyes, server crashes and sexual harrassment.

There are four different classes to choose from and each has his or her own special abilities, fueled by coffee which is collected every turn. The object is to take more cubicles than your opponent or wipe their whole team out.

You can choose to play against either the computer or against a friend/randomer over the internet. Give it a play at Adult Swim.

Browser Game Pick: Free Will - The Game (Raitendo)

July 6, 2009 12:01 PM | Michael Rose


Learn the true meaning of Free Will through the most realistic Game Boy adventure you've ever seen!

It's a joke, folks, so don't get too stressed at it's seemingly strange design choices. As for whether it's funny or not... well, let's just say this isn't your normal idea of free will.

It's over at Kongregate. (source: Mouse No!)

Chris Crawford and Jason Rohrer on Arte

July 6, 2009 11:15 AM | Tim W.

Chris Crawford and Jason Rohrer were the two subjects recently featured on Durch die Nacht mit (Into the Night with), a German/French co-produced documentary series focusing on two different personalities in each episode (celebrities or otherwise) who meet for the first time for the camera crew to capture on video.

The hour-long episode is available to watch here until July 9th, although visitors outside of Europe won't be able to access the clip. However, thanks to folks like Bruno from CoreGaming, you may be able to find the entire show via other means.

Pre-order Machinarium, Save $3

July 5, 2009 8:29 PM | Tim W.

Amanita Design has started taking pre-orders for their upcoming 2D adventure game Machinarium, and customers who purchase it early will get a three dollar discount off the regular price of $20. Buying the game before it is launched also entitles you to a pre-order pack that comes with songs from the Machinarium soundtrack, among other things.

Machinarium is scheduled for a release this October 2009, and will be available for both Windows and Mac OS X operating systems. (source)

Amanita Design blog

Freeware Game Pick: Bulletsss (Arvi Teikari)

July 5, 2009 11:21 AM | Tim W.

Bulletsss is a puzzle platformer that requires a fair amount of quick reflexes and serious thought from the player in equal parts, as the challenges and obstacles in the game can be rather difficult to complete even at the normal difficulty setting. Graphically it looks a lot more refined than the prequel BulletZORZ, but gameplay-wise the only major additions are the coloured lines that prevents either you or your bullets from passing through, and the ability to propel yourself in the opposite direction when shooting a bullet or wall at point blank range.

The main objective of Bulletsss is basically to collect all yellow gems in each area, then proceed to the goal flag to complete the level. Bullets move at a slow speed in this game, and you can use them as platforms to reach areas which are normally inaccessible with your basic jump skill. Projectiles will only hurt you if you touch them at the rounded end, and this includes bullets shot from your own gun as well.

Red lines kill on contact, while blue lines prevent a bullet from passing through. All sixteen levels included in the game can be played in any order, plus you can test your skills even further by playing the game at the hard difficulty setting with limited bullets to use in every stage.

Free Download: Graduate Games' The Magic Toy Chest

July 5, 2009 7:38 AM | Tim W.

Graduate Games' physics-based puzzle game, The Magic Toy Chest, can be downloaded for free today. The puzzler plays like a mix of The Incredible Machine and Crayon Physics, offers sixteen toys to use (each with a different weight and function), and comes with a comprehensive level editor that allows users to design and share their creations with their friends and family.

One thing I've noticed about the game is that the loading time between levels can take up to a few seconds. To avoid any wait when restarting a puzzle to perfect your solution, just press the Q key and everything will be placed back in their original positions instantly.

You don't need to key in any detail about yourself or acquire a credit card to download the full game. Simply type in any information for the required fields (at least five digits for daytime phone number), select PayPal as your payment method, and input BLKW000TH for the coupon code to get a full discount. A download link will then be supplied to you on the next page. Quick, easy and hassle-free.

For the Windows operating system only, and the offer expires at the end of July 5th, 2009. (today)

Freeware Game Pick: Holdover (Fox Eye)

July 4, 2009 11:09 PM | Tim W.

Holdover is a puzzle platformer in the style of the old Metroid series, where you are in control of a girl named Marie who had just woken up from a deep slumber inside an abandoned research complex. A holographic image of Marie's father informs her that she was involved in an accident many years ago, and had to be kept inside a medical treatment capsule for some time so that her organs could be regenerated by scientific means. After listening to her father's advice, she sets out to explore the complex and recover her motor skills which were impaired by her long sleep in the life chamber.

The research facility is a labyrinth of corridors, platforms and underwater sections, presumably caused by flooding in the lower levels of the building. Since you can't swim nor jump very high at the start of the game, the time in which you spent underwater will be limited to how long you can hold your breath. This is indicated by the bubble shown at the top left part of the screen, and Marie will drown when this counter reaches zero. Collecting enough blue hearts, and the ability to hold her breath underwater will improve.

Players can save their progress at any time by using the quick save slot, while maps and hints in Japanese can be accessed by clicking on the capture button at the official site. To download the game, just click on the blue button at the upper right part of the web page and a link to the zip file will appear. Take note that Holdover does have some blood and nudity in it. (unpack using 7-Zip)

Preview: Aera (iChromo)

July 4, 2009 9:30 PM | Michael Rose

Spotted this via the Twitter of Ian Marsh (Nimblebit) - an arcade-style plane shooter called Aera coming soon for your iThing.

A few things make this look incredibly awesome: (1) You can record your flights and replay them; (2) There's a 'Second Chance' feature which is basically the PoP/Braid-like 'reverse time when you die' mechanic; (3) It appears to have some nice multiplayer features going on.

No release date or price is set yet, but this is definitely shaping up to be a solid title for the App Store.

Ha-Satan: The Last Shmup on Earth

July 4, 2009 5:48 PM | Tim W.

Note: Video contains flashing images which may cause photosensitive epileptic seizures.

This Something Awful GameDev Challenge IV competition entry isn't packing a lot of gameplay (only one level, tries to copy cactus a bit too much, ripped sprites etc.) but you can't beat an intro like that when it comes to cooking up a background story for your game under pressure.

Video quality is very poor and the text is hardly readable, although it doesn't matter anyway as the epilepsy-inducing Game Maker release is already available for download and play. (music by AA.Kurtz, screenshots)

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