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IndieGames.com 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, Gamasutra.com 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 June, 2010

Preview: Scoregasm (Charlie's Games)

June 4, 2010 12:30 AM | Michael Rose

Charlie has released a huge nine minute long gameplay preview of his upcoming arena shooter Scoregasm, and it's looking pretty fantastic. Graphically, the setting reminds me a little of Sidhe's IGF finalist Shatter, which is definitely not a bad thing.

On each of Scoregasm's 50+ levels, there are three possible exits with different exits appearing appearing depending on how well you score. The game includes phrases such as 'Super Frenzy' and 'Death Sphere', both of which excite me greatly.

My advice is to watch the entire nine minutes - there's so much variety in enemy and boss battles and it's frantically action-packed throughout. The game is due for release sometime very soon, and pre-orders are currently being taken - $10 will get you the full game on release, while $15 will allow you access to the beta immediately.

For more info, visit Charlie's Games.

iPhone Game Pick: Poodle Invasion (Frederico Machuca)

June 3, 2010 2:39 PM | Michael Rose

Rather than trying to explain this iPhone game from Frederico Machuca, I'm going to let the really huge trailer do the talking. In a nutshell: Utterly fantastic. Grab it here.

Aquaria, Penumbra, Lugaru and Gish Now Open-Source

June 3, 2010 10:11 AM | Michael Rose

After the Humble Indie Bundle topped the incredible heights of $1million total sales, the developers involved announced they'd be releasing the source for their games (after a quick code clean-up, of course!). Wolfire's Lugaru went first, followed by Penumbra: Overture. Gish's source was burst open a few days ago.

Now Aquaria has followed suit, rounding it all off. Alec Holowka, part of the Bit Blot team behind Aquaria, has given his thoughts on the release over on the Infinite Ammo site:

"Releasing code is hard for me. It's always imperfect (or in my case, mostly a mess) and it feels extremely personal. Especially with Aquaria - a game that involved a lot of stress and heartbreak over the course of its development. (a significant portion of the code was written while under the influence of Canadian Club Whisky)"

Check it out, it's worth a read. And if you are so inclined, make sure to download the source too!

Activision Announces Independent Games Competition

June 3, 2010 9:00 AM | Tim W.


Activision has officially launched their own Independent Games Competition starting yesterday, inviting all developers based in the United States to submit their completed or in-development games before the 31st of August, 2010. Two winners will be selected after the submission phase has ended, with the first-placed winner receiving $175,000 to develop their title, while the runner-up will be awarded $75,000 as development funds for their project.

Winners from the first round is set to be revealed sometime in October 2010. A second phase of the competition will begin at a later date, with details about that round to be revealed by Activision soon.

More details about the competition can be found over at Activision's Sweepstakes page.

Indie Game Links: The Competitive Edge

June 2, 2010 12:00 PM | Tim W.

Today's collection of independent game links includes the announcement of a new Experimental Gameplay Project theme, an early look at Spiderweb Software's new RPG series, plus more XBL Indie Game recommendations to spend your MS Points on.

Experimental Gameplay: Casual Addiction
"Can you make the most casually addictive game possible? We’re giving you two months to find out."

Wolfire Games Blog: Gish goes open-source
"As promised in the Humble Indie Bundle, the indie game starring your favorite 12-pound ball of tar has had its source code released under the GNU General Public License."

Jay is Games: Casual Gameplay Design Competition #8
"For the 8th Casual Gameplay Design Competition, we are calling for entries designed to incorporate the sandbox theme."

Spiderweb Software: Just Announced - Avadon: The Black Fortress
"After six months of hard work, we have gotten our new fantasy RPG series to the point where we can announce it to the world. We will be putting monthly development diaries up in the nine months or so it will take to finish Avadon: The Black Fortress."

Dealspwn: XBL Indie Games, Top 5 Hidden Gems
"XBLA provides a fantastic games selection, but the Indie channel offers a huge number of great titles that simply don’t garner the mainstream respect and profits that they deserve. I’d like to shine the spotlight on a few games that will offer you big budget thrills for bargain basement prices."

Gamezebo: Where have all the good games gone
"Over the past couple of months, it has become painfully clear that the quality and quantity of download games is dropping. There are less download games being released each week, and of those that are released, many are just not good."

Gamasutra: PixelJunk's 2D Roots, 3D Future
"Gamasutra recently had a chance to speak to Dylan Cuthbert about the history of Q-Games, his work with Sony and Nintendo, and the thinking and technology behind the popular PixelJunk series."

Make 'em Up: Game Development Competition
"Make 'em Up (pictured) is a contest in which you enter with a team and a prototype of a game. The prize is a deal worth 65,000 Euros, but most of all it’s a chance to get your dream game finished and successful." [As always, please read the fine print first before participating in any competitions.]

Browser Game Pick: Grace's Diary (GPTouch)

June 2, 2010 5:00 AM | Tim W.


Grace's Diary is a visual novel made by Hima and Piti for submission to the Life. Love. Game Design Challenge Contest, an annual competition sponsored by the Jennifer Ann's Group to spread awareness about the dangers of teen dating violence. The story is about a student named Grace and her best friend Natalie, whom she thinks might be involved in an abusive relationship. You must help Grace search for memories inside that can be used to convince Natalie to review her situation and seek professional help for her troubles before it is too late.

The game features three different endings to find in total. Grace's Diary delivers the message quite well as an edutainment effort, and the conversation skip button comes in really handy when you just want to explore the consequences arising from your other decisions. A walkthrough for the game can be found here, and an interview with Drew Crecente (founder of Jennifer Ann's Group) is located here.

Preview: Night Train‏ (Xportmedia)

June 2, 2010 12:23 AM | Michael Rose

nighttrain.gif

Night Train is the story of a woman's journey into her memories. Having fallen asleep while riding the train, she begins to remember her past, and slowly pieces together why she is on the train in the first place.

The game follows her train of thought from her earliest memory to the present day. Night Train is to be just one part of a series of stories called The Things That Haunt Us, and is due to be released sometime in July. It's got something very Tale of Tales behind it all... or at least I think so.

A demo will be available for download from June 11th. The trailer is after the cut.

Eufloria Coming to PSN Early 2011

June 1, 2010 5:22 PM | Michael Rose

eufloria.jpg

The Playstation Network is the new place to be for indies, it would appear! Rudolf and Alex of Eufloria today announced that strategy bloomer Eufloria is coming to PSN early next year.

Along with the original PC game features, the PSN edition will include graphical improvements, gameplay changes, interface improvements, and new content. Brian Grainger will also be providing some brand new tracks to add to the ambient atmosphere.

I've noticed a good number of indie developers broadcasting their despair at the Xbox Live service via Twitter over the last few months, choosing instead to look into releasing their games via Playstation's service - the Cletus Clay devs even commented that "PS3 seems to be rather more indie friendly these days." The tides are a-changin', perhaps?

Either way, Eufloria will be a very welcome addition to the PSN store. Check out our PC review for what to expect.

Freeware Game Pick: The Life of a Pacifist (Bento Smile)

June 1, 2010 4:19 PM | Tim W.


The Life Of A Pacifist Is Often Fraught With Conflict is a cartoony visual novel created by Bento Smile using the Ren'py engine, featuring five different endings and a quick conversation skip button that can be extremely useful for multiple playthroughs. In it you play as a member of a game development team, attending another meeting to discuss the agenda for the day with your fellow colleagues.

The game is displayed in full screen by default, but you can switch to windowed mode by pressing the F key. A discussion thread for it can be found here. (Mac/Win/Linux, 3.92MB)

Joe Danger coming to PSN on June 8th-9th

June 1, 2010 10:05 AM | Michael Rose

joe_danger.jpeg

Sean Murray of Hello Games has confirmed via a Playstation Blog post that Joe Danger is landing in the US PSN store on June 8th, with a UK release on the 9th.

The post also throws out some new, exciting details. We already knew there was a level editor available, but how about the ability to create levels then send them to your friends to try out? Your friend can then play it through, add even more hurt and fire it right back to you.

There's over 100 levels on offer, with nearly a dozen game modes, including Target Smash, Assault Course, Race, Coin Dash, Bowling Bounce, and Puzzle Mode. Details on the community features are on show too - I can already see the local splitscreen multiplayer being a regular occurrence at my place.

A point to note is how Sean is going through the comments answering questions - I've never see a developer do that on the PS blog before, and it's bound to win over a number of gamers. Interaction between players and developers is good, more please!

Joe Danger will be $14.99/£9.99 when it hits on June 8th/9th. Check out our preview from last year for all you need to know.

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