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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 June, 2010

XBL Indie Game Pick: Fishie Fishie Fifty (Farbs)

June 15, 2010 7:08 PM | Michael Rose


Originally a freeware PC game, then a WiiWare title, this Xbox Live Indie Games edition of Farbs' Fishie Fishie Fifty is a stripped down, multiplayer-focused barrel of laughs. It's also up to 52 player. Simultaneously. Yes, you read that right.

See, it's a one-button game, and since each Xbox controller has a plethora of buttons, each player can choose a button on any controller and claim it as his or her own. Each player controls a fish - pressing your button makes it spin clockwise, while letting go will make it surge anti-clockwise. There are tons of little fishes to eat on each level, and the winner is whoever eats the most fish.

I didn't manage to test the game out with 52 players - I don't think my flat holds that many people - but even with just a few players it's pretty good fun. There's only the single game mode, but for $1 you can't really complain. Definitely a great game for throwing on at a party ot gathering.

Grab Fishie Fishie Fifty from the Xbox Live Marketplace.

Trailer: Dust - An Elysian Tail (Humble Hearts)

June 15, 2010 3:00 PM | Tim W.

Here's the new trailer for Dust: An Elysian Tail, a former Dream.Build.Play competition winner from 2009. This side-scrolling action-RPG is currently being developed by Dean Dodrill with music contributed by Hyperduck Studios, and is scheduled for a release on the Xbox Live Arcade sometime in 2011.

Browser Game Pick: Loved (Alexander Ocias)

June 15, 2010 10:37 AM | Michael Rose


Picked up this bizarre platformer from the Rock, the Paper and the Shotgun. Loved features a black and white world through which you roam via a plump monster thingy. It's all very sinister, however, due to a voice which is constantly asking questions and telling you what to do.

Your answers and choices have a huge effect on your gaming experience. Disobey an order and you'll get different results, answer a question with a negative response and you'll change the outcome. The game is only around five minutes long, but after a third or fourth play through, you'll still be seeing new paths.

The controls are a little wonky - you will land on spikes many, many times - but it's definitely worth giving a go. Play here.

Why The Eufloria Developers Chose PSN

June 14, 2010 5:10 PM | Michael Rose


When Eufloria was announced for PSN a couple of weeks ago, I commented that a number of indie developers have been voicing their concerns over Microsoft's Xbox Live Arcade service, and are instead trying to get their stuff on the Playstation distribution service instead.

Rudolf Kremers, co-developer on Eufloria, recently talked to Charge Shot and had some interesting insights to divulge on the matter:

"[The Playstation Network] is the only natural place for the game really as a WiiWare version stranded early after Nintendo approached us at the IGF (they don't like that we work from a home office) and Microsoft put so many extra demands on an XBLA port that it would be both too much a financial risk as well as introduce things in gameplay terms we are not that interested in. Sony on the other hand have been genuinely enthusiastic, and have shown to be very welcoming to the indie approach we bring to the table."

Read the full interview here. I'd be really interested to hear from any other developers who are finding themselves frustrated with Microsoft's 'demands'. With Joe Danger released this week via PSN, are Sony slowly becoming the indie weapon of choice (after PC of course)?

Browser Game Pick: Entanglement (Gopherwood Studios)

June 14, 2010 2:15 PM | Michael Rose


Entanglement is a great little puzzler involving hexagons and lots of twisty paths. An orange line leads out of the centre piece, and your job is to create a path from there that goes for as long as possible without hitting a wall.

Pieces can be rotated via the mouse wheel or arrow keys, then placed down with a click. It's possible to create some weird and wonderful paths, winding all over the place. Apart from the basic mode, there is also Two Tile Tangle, which I assume means there are two orange paths to deal with, although I wasn't good enough to unlock it, since I'm clearly thick (UPDATE: I did it, yippee! You get a spare tile in TTT mode, and can switch between the two). There are some lovely local multiplayer options too, with games available for up to six players.

A lovely, addictive time-waster, this one. Go give it a bash. (Thanks Todd!)

Freeware Game Pick: Rein (Darius Poyer)

June 14, 2010 6:00 AM | Tim W.

Rein is a short 2D adventure game made by Darius Poyer using the AGS engine in under two weeks, where you play as one of the staff involved in a secret bioengineering project inside a research facility named Fraxto 21. At the start of the story the entire building is already collapsing all around you, so you must make haste and try to escape from the place in one piece.

The game autosaves when you enter a new room, which is a handy feature to have as some puzzles require a bit of trial and error to figure out. Grab Rein from here. (Windows, 13.5MB)

Indie Game Links: Don't Cave In

June 14, 2010 2:00 AM | Tim W.

Today's collection of independent game links includes announcements of a couple of indie game showcase events, news from Nicalis (Cave Story WiiWare) and Remar Games (Iji, Hero Core), plus the usual updates on your favorite indie games and developers. (image source) Nicalis Hints At More Games From Cave Story Creator
"A new blog post from Nicalis suggests that the publisher may have ports planned for a couple more of Pixel's games."

Boing Boing: Japan's first and best indie darling, Cave Story
"Cave Story is what all the best indie creations were and are: a shining example of an auteur-driven work -- a game that could have come from no one but Amaya himself, and managed to retain its coherent vision undiluted by outside interference."

Ludosity Interactive: Ludosity and Remar Games
"Ludosity Interactive has teamed up with Daniel Remar of Iji and Hero Core fame, to bring Garden Gnome Carnage to new platforms, starting with Flash."

Steam News: Eversion Released
"The high-definition version of indie fan favorite Eversion, now with Steam support. Purchase between now through June 14th to receive a 10% discount."

VVVVVV Wiki: Welcome Aboard
A Wiki all about Terry Cavanagh's retro puzzle platformer game VVVVVV.

GameSetWatch: Hot Ninja Moon Moon Remake Features New Graphics, Meat
"Almost two years after the original release of Game Maker platformer Hot Ninja Moon Moon by AcidBatterie, indie designer David Scatliffe has remade the title as online Flash game with double the levels and a soundtrack by Magnus 'Souleye' Pålsson (VVVVVV)."

GameSetWatch: Messhoff, Interpol Help Kick Off The Creators Project
"The Creators Project event series kicks off in just a couple weeks at New York City's Milk Studios. Highlights from the upcoming launch event include indie game designer Mark "messhof" Essen showing off Jetpack Basketball, Patrick Jean presenting his popular short film Pixels, and more."

Gamasutra: Fantastic Fest Spawns Indie Gaming Festival
"Annual genre film festival Fantastic Fest announced Fantastic Arcade, a spin-off dedicated to showcasing new games from independent developers and publishers, at Austin's Highball and famous Alamo Drafthouse theater."

Browser Game Pick: Unnatural Selection (David Shute)

June 13, 2010 11:00 PM | Tim W.

Unnatural Selection is a puzzle-based life simulation game that features slimy creatures to experiment with, where your assigned objective is to figure what type of stimuli will mutate them into species that you have not discovered yet. You start off with a handful of worms, and if you drag them to a new environment they will start to evolve into a new creature. Some will die and rot away when they cannot adapt, but you'll always get new maggots to play around with when the number of creatures on screen start to dwindle.

There are sixteen evolution branches to find in total, with some requiring the player to feed or starve a creature until it achieves a new form. A walkthrough for the game can be found here.

GDC Music Chat: Baiyon, Danny B, Laura Shigihara & Alec Holowka

June 13, 2010 5:00 PM | jeriaska

Baiyon and Danny B at the San Francisco Metreon

This year at the Game Developer Conference in San Francisco, four music composers met to compare their experiences working in independent games. Baiyon has previously been responsible for designing the art and music of Q-Games' Playstation Network titles PixelJunk Eden and PixelJunk Eden Encore. He is currently collaborating with the Kyoto-based company on a music visualizer for the Playstation 3.

A contributor to the game arrangement community OverClocked ReMix, Danny Baranowsky has recently received recognition for his original compositions for indie games. His soundtrack to the forthcoming Super Meat Boy was an Excellence in Audio finalist at the 2010 Independent Games Festival. Music for Canabalt, Steambirds and Gravity Hook HD is streaming for free and lossless downloads can be purchased on Bandcamp.

Two strands of Laura Shigihara's career have recently coincided, bringing industry recognition to her pop music and videogame themes. This year she was presented with an award from the Game Audio Network Guild for her pop song "Plants vs Zombies" from the soundtrack to PopCap's tower defense title of the same name. The musician is currently taking on multiple creative roles on the development of her own independent game Melolune.

In 2007, Alec Holowka received the Seamus McNally Grand Prize together with Derek Yu for their game Aquaria, part of the successful Humble Indie Bundle fundraising effort. The following year his newly formed studio Infinite Ammo premiered Paper Moon at Kokoromi's GAMMA exhibition at GDC. Currently in production is an ambitious project for which he is contributing music, design and code, called Marian.

Interpretation during the group chat and translation of the Japanese-language portions of the the talk have been provided by translator and musician Yoshi Miyamoto.

Alec Holowka and Laura Shigihara

Atlus Reveals Trine 2 and ACE Team's Rock of Ages

June 12, 2010 11:07 AM | Michael Rose


Publisher Atlus has revealed part of its E3 line-up, which includes the sequel to Frozenbyte's puzzler platformer Trine, and the next game from Zeno Clash developer ACE Team, Rock of Ages.

We had a ball with both Trine and Zeno Clash, so this is all exciting news. Of course, it's noteable that both developers now have a publisher, and hence aren't all that independent anymore. However, for me part of being indie is having the spirit to create the games that you want, and I reckon both devs will create exactly what they originally envisioned, publisher or no publisher. Hence I'm going to cover them anyway! So sue me.

Hopefully more details will be released next week at E3.

Source: IGN (cheers Anthony P!)

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