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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, 2009

Freeware Game Pick: Skull Daddy (Christopher Mathes)

August 5, 2009 9:05 PM | Tim W.

Skull Daddy is a physics-based puzzler that is currently only available as a demo, bundled with ten short levels and a limited number of tools to choose from. In each stage you are assigned a limited number of basic building blocks to construct platforms with, so that the titular character can roll his way towards the exit safely.

Instructions are relayed to the player via sign posts that can be read or ignored at their own discretion, and you can retry a level as many times as you like until a working solution is found.

Astro Tripper, Mutant Storm Series Coming to PCs

August 5, 2009 7:17 PM | Tim W.

According to the latest post on PomPom Games' site, the PC versions of Astro Tripper, Mutant Storm Reloaded and Mutant Storm Empire are done and awaiting a final test phase before release.

This was cited as the reason for the delay as well, because testing these games on all sorts of different PC configurations can be pretty expensive - hence they've suggested the idea of putting out pre-release builds on their site to purchase at only $5 (cost inclusive of final version and future updates), so that interested buyers can help them test the full games out.

All they're asking is for some feedback on whether to proceed with the plan or not, and if things work out those of us who do not own a console should be able to get our hands on PC ports of their recent games very, very soon.

PC Version News and Stuff (PomPom Games)

Direct2Drive Sale: The Best of Indie Bundle Volume 1

August 5, 2009 5:12 PM | Tim W.

We've been recommending these five games for quite some time, and now there's a chance to purchase them all from Direct2Drive at a very special price of $17.75. It would normally cost you close to $80 for Defense Grid, Democracy 2, The Path, Zeno Clash and Cogs, but with the collection you are getting five fantastic indie game releases for the price of one (or two, in some cases). Don't miss out on this time-limited offer, as the discount is only valid until August 9th.

Direct2Drive: Buy Best of Indie Bundle Download

Trailer: Machinarium (Amanita Design)

August 5, 2009 4:24 PM | Tim W.

Jakub sent word of a new Machinarium trailer posted on their site today. The game is scheduled for a release this coming October, and the $3 discount plus bonus pack still stands if you pre-order it anytime before that date.

Amanita Design Blog

Dungeon Scroll Released For iPhone

August 5, 2009 12:02 PM | Michael Rose

An IGF finalist waaaay back in 2004, Dungeon Scroll, in which you fight your way through dungeons full of evil creatures by blasting them with 'magic words', has been given the iPhone treatment and is now available to buy for $0.99.

Rats, skeletons and dragons are dispatched by making words out of the available letters. There are also special powers which help shift the battle in your favour. The original PC version is also still available from the Robinson Technologies site.

Freeware Game Pick: Sticky Situation (Thunderware)

August 5, 2009 11:32 AM | Michael Rose


Sticky Situation is a shooter with an interesting concept. Both yourself and the enemy are constantly firing sticky darts at each other, and when enough darts have secured themselves firmly to a ship, the weight will become too much and said ship will fall to its doom.

Your own vessel feels really odd to control, as it rotates slightly as it moves, meaning it's rather difficult to shoot in a straight line. Not that you would want to - you'd end up with a face full of darts from the ship you're trying to sink! The tactic here is to keep moving to take the enemies from an angle. It's still extremely difficult though, so it's worth remembering that you can tap the shift button every second to knock a single dart off your ship (you can actually hold shift, but it slows you down and is generally not worth it at all).

All in all, it feels like there is an interesting concept here which could possibly be expanded on. Download it from Anthony L. Romano's Thunderware blog.

Turba Public Beta Available

August 5, 2009 1:46 AM | Michael Rose


Turba, a match-3 game which uses your music collection, is now available to play as part of a public beta. The Turba team are looking for feedback on their creation, which they are hoping to release sometime soon.

Blocks appear with the beat of which ever song you choose, and more points are giving out if blocks are destroyed with the beat too. Some kind of 'the beat giveth, and the beat taketh away', you could say. It's decent fun - I mean, who doesn't like playing games which involve their own music selections - but suffers from the same problems as its musical gaming counterparts - the beat isn't picked up well in many songs, sometimes completely out of sync.

There are a few other issues too, but remember this is a beta and not the finished product. It's still well worth the play if you're looking to fill some time. The beta will be available for around one week and can be found on the Turba blog.

Browser Game Pick: The Heist 2 (Johnny Two Shoes)

August 5, 2009 1:43 AM | Tim W.

The Heist 2 is an overhead car chase game in which you play the crook, pulling one successful robbery after another as you try to amass enough money for your retirement plans. Before the start of each heist, you would need to kit out your escape vehicle and occupy it with some henchmen to carry out the dirty deeds.

At the scene of the crime, cops will attempt to stop you from fleeing the premises. There shouldn't be any problems reaching the getaway vehicle for a quick escape if you've hired enough manpower and equipped them with the right tools for the job. Then it's all about driving away as quickly as you can, dodging incoming traffic and ramming police cars to the side so that you can put some distance between you and your pursuers. (game guide)

Is There Money To Be Made In Indie Games?

August 4, 2009 11:55 PM | Michael Rose


Jeff Ward over on sister site Gamasutra has posted an article questioning whether there is a living to be made from developing independent games.

Jeff, a game designer himself who is currently working on a title for release on Xbox Live Indie Games, notes recent rants from indie developers regarding their monies:

"We've been seeing recently a number of small game companies really hitting a wall when it comes to funding. Introversion had a post on their blog about their money problems, and Mommy's Best Games, though still pushing ahead, made it clear that the numbers on Weapon of Choice were not good."

The different distribution methods are also explored, from iPhone projects to PC releases, with lots of daunting sales figures. Jeff comes to the conclusion that it is extremely difficult to sustain yourself money-wise by simply developing indie games full-time, or even with 'alternative money sources'.

Read the full article over on Gama.

IGF Note From The Organizers, August 2009: Winner Highlights, IGS @ GDC Austin, Judge Additions

August 4, 2009 10:35 PM | Simon Carless

[Now that the Independent Games Festival has a proper update blog on its front page [RSS feed!], myself and the other organizers will be updating monthly with relevant info on previous winners, events, judges, etc - here's the first of those.]

In the run-up to this year's Independent Games Festival deadlines this November, we thought it might be a good idea to update periodically with the latest news on submissions, previous winners, judging, relevant events, and so on.

IGF Success Stories

Firstly, I just wanted to highlight some notable successes from previous Independent Games Festival winners, showing the power of indie games in today's market. For starters, The Behemoth's 2007 double IGF award winner Castle Crashers for Xbox Live Arcade recently reached 1 million individual leaderboard entries, making it one of the most-played XBLA titles of all time - congratulations to them.

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