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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 September, 2010

Indie Game Links: Good Old Marketing

September 23, 2010 6:00 AM | Tim W.

Today's collection of independent game links includes more indie game previews, a couple of development updates, and the usual interviews with developers from around the 'net. (image source)

Gamasutra: Marketing Isn't Evil, It's Your Game
"The creators of AaaaaAAaaaAAAaaAAAAaAAAAA!!! -- A Reckless Disregard for Gravity argue that while 'marketing' is a dirty word to gamers and indies, it's an essential part of the development process."

Ludum Dare: Make a game, sell one copy
"The challenge is simple: make a game, take it to market, and sell (or license) one copy. Have something new for sale and in a store by the end of October."

IGN: Indie Devs Will Have Access to Kinect Soon
"No specific dates have been nailed down, but Corporate Vice President for Microsoft Game Studios Phil Spencer told IGN he believes the company is close to being prepared to offer the Kinect dev tools to indie developers."

MTV Multiplayer: Super Meat Boy To Have Free Level Packs Via 'Teh Internets'
"Teh Internets is a way for Team Meat to push brand new (and completely free) levels out to Xbox 360 users whenever they want. Usually, adding new content to a game on Xbox Live requires a lengthy and expensive approval process for every single piece of content. Teh Internets is a way around this."

GameSetWatch: Two Tribes Porting Edge, Swords And Soldiers, And Frenzic
"Two Tribes (Toki Tori remake) has announced plans to re-develop and re-publish several popular indie titles to new platforms. The Dutch studio will adapt Ronimo Games' real-time strategy WiiWare/PSN title Swords & Soldiers for the iPhone/iPad, and Mobigame's iPhone puzzler Edge for Steam."

Nintendo Life: First Cave Story DSiWare Screenshots
"Cave Story is indeed headed to the DSiWare service this fall, and we were able to get our hands on three shots of the game in action."

Jay is Games: Casual Gameplay Design Competition No. 9
"We are teaming up with our friends at Electronic Arts' EA2D studio to bring you another exciting casual gameplay design competition."

IndieCade 2010 Finalists: Recurse (Matt Parker)

September 22, 2010 11:50 AM | Michael Rose

Another IndieCade 2010 finalist to look at today - Recurse is all about wiggling about and looking a bit silly to score as many points as possible. A camera captures your movements and shows a distorted mirror image of you on the screen.

Green and red shapes appear on the screen, and the idea is to move your body around lots in the green spaces, and not move at all in the red spaces. That's the general gist of it, and it appears to do a good job of making people forget themselves and become immersed in the game - just check out the video after the cut and you'll see what I mean.

The game makes me think about what indie developers will do with the upcoming Kinect motion-controlled hardware - I can imagine that AAA developers will stick to creating boring, generic minigame crap for the most part, while indie devs may actually produce some interesting experimental stuff. We shall see in due course, I guess!

Browser Game Pick: Garden Gnome Carnage (Daniel Remar)

September 22, 2010 2:00 AM | Tim W.

Originally released as a Windows-only game back in late 2007, Daniel Remar's Garden Gnome Carnage has been ported to the Flash platform by Ludosity Interactive for distribution on casual game portals. The objective here is to prevent elves from reaching the top of the building and sliding down your unprotected chimney hole, since the game is over when you're too overwhelmed to prevent that from happening.

Your means of defense include swinging a gnome tied to your chimney to knock back the invaders, throwing bricks at anything that moves, and calling in airstrikes to carpet bomb the entire area for a few seconds of respite. Note that the only way to defeat elves who carry gifts is to knock them out of the screen, and your brick supply is replenished if you allow a cat into the building through the chimney.

Browser Game Pick: Feign (Ian Snyder)

September 21, 2010 5:00 PM | Tim W.

Feign: is a clever maze game that is similar to Mike Inel's Where and Hazard: The Journey of Life, in which players are instructed to find the nine missing people who have hid themselves inside a network of rooms and corridors. If you lose count of how many people you have found, standing still in one spot will cause a text that displays your current progress to appear on screen.

Indie Game Links: Favorite Vacation Spots

September 21, 2010 3:00 PM | Tim W.

Today's collection of independent game links includes more indie game previews, a couple of development updates, and the usual interviews with developers from around the 'net. (image source)

Destructoid: La Mulana is like... what?
"This is the biggest, broadest, item-packed 2D platformer that I've played in years. The game is coming to WiiWare any second now, so you'll get to see for yourself soon enough."

Monaco: Wanna be a voice over star in Monaco?
"I'm putting out an open call for voice over artists. This is a paid position, the amount depending on your experience and how much I love your voice."

Destructoid: Cave Story WiiWare dev - I want to make more Cave Story
"Tyrone Rodriguez and Pixel have been bouncing a few ideas around; bringing more Pixel games to consoles, putting Cave Story on more consoles, tweaking the pre-existing WiiWare version of the game, and tooling around with the very different, rarely seen Cave Story Beta."

Business News Daily: Makers of the Video Game Flower Are Now in Full Bloom
"Small developers struggle to compete in a $20 billion video game industry dominated by behemoths such as Electronic Arts and Activision. But one of them, thatgamecompany, has found both commercial success and critical acclaim by making games that don't play the way anything else on the market does."

GameSetWatch: Second Episode Of King's Quest-Inspired Fangame Released
"Phoenix Online Studios has released the Two Households, the second episode of its King's Quest-inspired adventure game The Silver Lining. Both episodes are available to download and play for free from the game's official site."

Gamasutra: Nimbly Games On Indie Aerial Combat Title Altitude
"Gamasutra spoke to Nimbly Games' Erik Measure as part of a continuing series on this year's PAX 10 inductees - discussing Altitude's take on online multiplayer, the pros and cons of independent development, and the team's plans for future titles."

Unity Technologies Blog: Unity 3 Release Real Soon Now
"Happy news here from Unity HQ: Unity 3 is nearly ready. This means we’re wrapping up this cycle and shipping soon."

Joystiq: PixelJunk Shooter 2 preview
"Q-Games' Dylan Cuthbert was mum on when we can expect the PSN sequel, but he did showcase a bevy of new features we can expect in the Shooter follow-up."

IndieCade 2010 Finalists: Miegakure (Marc ten Bosch)

September 21, 2010 10:37 AM | Michael Rose

Our look at the IndieCade 2010 finalists takes us to Miegakure, a puzzle game in which you mess around with the fourth dimension. Players can walk around a 3D world, before hitting a button and switching to the fourth dimension.

The idea is that you've got an exit gate that is situated in a spot you can't quite reach. Switching between dimensions can reveal blocks that weren't there before. You can push them into the third dimension, and switch back. Success, you've got more to work with.

I played this back when it was an IGF finalist, and it hurt my brain. It's possible to not only move blocks between dimensions, but only potentially push blocks from the third dimension into the fourth, move them into a new location, then push them back into the third again - hence moving them through solid walls and the like. Check out the above video and you'll see what I mean.

The game isn't available to play yet, but it will be coming to consoles, PC, Mac and Linux at some point.

Freeware Game Pick: MooD (Benjamin Braden)

September 21, 2010 1:00 AM | Tim W.

MooD: Waist-High in Hell is a top-down shooter that features enemies from the Doom 3 universe, redrawn by Amon26 as minute but recognisable 2D sprites for the players to shoot at. The game features both a single-player campaign and a hotseat deathmatch mode, although you can't strafe nor change the frag win count which is set to twenty by default.

Our space marine starts out with a plain pistol in hand to use for defense, but enemies do drop weapons and medkits often enough when they are defeated. Some of the guns that you can acquire include a shotgun, machine gun, plasma gun, and the infamous BFG weapon.

Benjamin is also running a special competition for players who can score over a million points in MooD: Waist-High in Hell. Details of the contest can be found here. (Windows, 6.12MB)

Pixel's pxtone Inspires The Best Music

September 20, 2010 9:10 PM | jeriaska

For the past five years, George Michael Brower and Jonathan Baken have been making music with pxtone collage. A low-fi music editing program for Windows, pxtone was designed by Cave Story creator Pixel (Daisuke Amaya) to enable the composition of low-fi, homebrew game music. Jonathan first discovered the program on the forums for the NES Music Archive "2a03" and decided to give it a shot. He and Peter Berkman of Anamanaguchi in turn introduced the software to George. The music group George and Jonathan casually came to be, eventually resulting in the recently released album "The Best Music." We caught up with George and Jonathan to hear about the process behind the making of their album, from cave story to cave trolls.

Having created so much music on pxtone collage, were you interested in playing Cave Story to get a sense of Pixel's art style?

George Michael Brower: I've played a little Cave Story, but I haven't beaten it. The origins of pxtone were only made apparent to me maybe a year after I started using it. I do think the fact that this program just sort of floated from Japan into the hands of two kids in the suburbs of New York is sort of beautiful. I'm infinitely thankful it did.

What was it about the setup of pxtone that distinguished it from nerd tracker and other music creation tools you were trying out at the time?

Jonathan Baken: Well, for one thing you could actually use a mouse! Nerd tracker is a DOS-based program, so you have to use various commands on the keyboard to navigate the program. Pxtone was a lot easier and I really liked having seemingly unlimited tracks for making dense compositions. Also, pxtone can take any sample as long as it's a .wav file. This provides the user with endless possibilities, whereas nerd tracker just made 2a03 sounds with 5 channels: 2 squares, triangle, noise, DPCM. (Don't get me wrong: I still love composing chiptunes with trackers. I've recently been making a ton of stuff on the Game Boy with LSDJ.)

The Great Fire of Minecraft

September 20, 2010 5:21 PM | Michael Rose

We don't talk about Minecraft enough here on the blog, so I shall resolve this issue by telling you to go grab a copy, then posting one of the funniest videos I have seen in a very long time as proof of why you should pay the 10 euros asking price. "And not always, but most of... oh oh" may be the greatest piece of commentary I have ever heard. (Source: DIYGamer)

Browser Game Pick: Graveyard Graveyard Revolution (Terry Cavanagh)

September 20, 2010 2:43 PM | Michael Rose


Created in 2 hours for Klik of the Month, Graveyard Graveyard Revolution is a mashup of Tale of Tales' The Graveyard and the popular Dance Dance Revolution games.

Ever wanted to dance on someone's grave? Now you can, DDR style! I'm really not sure what else to say about this, except that I suddenly feel a huge urge to go out and buy lots of Irish folk music. Play the game at Terry's site.

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