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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 November, 2010

Browser Game Pick: Ray Ardent Science Ninja (Shane Neville)

November 12, 2010 1:41 PM | Michael Rose

scienceninja.jpg
Sounds like a job for science! Ray Ardent Science Ninja is a side-scrolling run-a-thon featuring a ninja who loves science a bit too much.

Each short level has 'X6' set out in lines ready for collection, and your job is to run, slide, jump and pounce your way to the portal at the end. Over time you're granted more moves and extra speed, allowing for extra precision and velocity in your stride.

The action can feel a little awkward at first, but once you fully understand the timing of each move then it's possible to string together some amazing moves and reach the portal without having to stop once. Ray's constant statement shouting does become a little irritating, but the dialogue is pretty entertaining.

Get your science on over at Armor Games.

Indie Game Links: President vs. Zombies

November 12, 2010 8:00 AM | Tim W.

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

TorquePowered.com: November Update
"While we are shutting down InstantAction.com, Torquepowered.com will continue to operate while InstantAction explores opportunities with potential buyers for Torque."

ACE Team: 2D vs 3D in Rock of Ages
"One of the difficulties of accomplishing the right style in Rock of Ages has been finding how much 2D vs. 3D we would be using in the game. Medieval art doesn't really have any 3D perspective, and if you build it completely in 3D a lot of the charm of the style is lost."

Infinite Ammo Podcast: Kyle Pulver
"Kyle Pulver is part of Retro Affect (Snapshot), and he has created many games on his own as well. If you haven’t already done so, you owe it to yourself to check out his freeware games."

DIYgamer: The Magical Minds Behind Spirits… Spaces of Play
"Seeing as how we’re only days away from the release of the Spaces of Play’s second title, Spirits, we at DIY HQ thought a nice e-sitdown with the auspicious devs would offer some insightful information regarding the game’s and studio’s future."

GameSetWatch: XBLIG Platformer Pits President Against Zombies
"Released a couple days ago to Xbox Live Indie Games by Japanese group 8bits fanatics, Tempura of the Dead has you switching between a submachine gun-toting U.S. President and sword-wielding samurai to fight zombies."

Destructoid: Tempura of the Dead may be the best $3 you'll ever spend
"Tempura of the Dead is incredible in that it feels like it came from an alternate universe where videogame graphics were unable to progress beyond what we had in the '80s but everything else was."

Gamasutra: Pixelante On Eccentric Indie Platformer Fowl Space
"Gamasutra spoke with Pixelante's Eddy Walters about Fowl Space's development, the pros and cons of life as an indie developer, and the team's plans for the future."

dB soundworks: Steambirds iOS Soundtrack
"The Steambirds soundtrack has been re-released. Pay whatever you want for it (even download it for free), there's no minimum amount."

Zen Bound 2 Coming to PC and Mac + Zen Bound 1 Now Free on iPhone

November 11, 2010 5:24 PM | Michael Rose

zenbound.pngWe've never talked about iPhone puzzle game Zen Bound before, and this is very much a failure on our part. Fortunately, a new opportunity to mention the popular rope-wrapping series has arisen - Zen Bound 2 is making its way to Steam on November 16th.

Never even heard of it? No problem, here's an explanation! You wrap rope around objects, and then wrap some more rope around some other objects! No seriously, it's very calming and relaxed stuff, and the news that its coming to PC is very good indeed. It'll cost $4.99 via your local Steam boutique.

To celebrate the release, the original Zen Bound is now also available for free on iPhone for a limited time. Grab a copy from the App Store before it's too late!

Freeware Game Pick: Octodad (DePaul University Student Team)

November 11, 2010 4:42 PM | Michael Rose


Oh yes, I'll have some of this please. Octodad is a 3D adventure game that sees you controlling an octopus who is pretending to be a human. He also has kids and a wife who he needs to keep his secret from.

If this sounds pretty crazy, just wait until you see the control scheme. Holding left click and dragging the mouse moves his left tentacle, while right click does the right one. Press space and you move into Arms mode - now left click grabs things, while right click moves your arm up and down. Lots of smashing and destruction is guaranteed, as is hilarious fun. The game is purposely difficult to control, which leads to the octopus walking in a laugh-out-loud manner.

There's even a story revolving around setting up a fake version of yourself so that your wife can enjoy your body without getting covered in ink. Wait, is it squids that squirt ink or octopuses? Or is that octopi? While I go and brush up on my octopus knowledge, you should go and download Octodad right now.

2011 Independent Games Festival Announces Audio Award Jury

November 11, 2010 4:37 PM | Simon Carless

Organizers of the 2011 Independent Games Festival are pleased to announce the jury panel that will determine the finalists and winner of its Excellence in Audio award, a category which seeks to highlight the best musical & sound innovation, quality, and impressiveness in independent gaming.

Prior finalists and winners of the IGF Excellence in Audio award, which will be given out at Game Developers Conference 2011 next March, earned recognition for games that took an entirely new and unique to approach to sound in games or otherwise excelled at their craft.

These have included Queasy Games' abstract acoustic guitar shooter and 2007 award winner Everyday Shooter, 2008 finalist guitar-controller platformer Fret Nice, 2009's ultra-stylized finalist PixelJunk Eden from Q-Games and Osaka musician/DJ Baiyon, and the atmospheric 2010 award winning Closure (pictured).

This year, the jury will receive recommendations from the wider body of over 150 IGF Main Competition judges (itself including notable former IGF winners, finalists and indie game notables including Ron Carmel, Andy Schatz, Ramiro Corbetta, Kellee Santiago, and Olivier Lejade) as they consider the merits of each of the five finalists and eventual award winner.

The 2011 IGF Excellence in Audio award jury consists of the following:

- Danny Baranowsky (Founder of dB soundworks and musician behind games like Canabalt & 2010 Excellence in Audio finalist Super Meat Boy.)
- Vincent Diamante (Composer and sound designer behind PS3 indie hit Flower, audio & game design teacher at USC's School of Cinematic Arts.)
- Jordan Fehr (Sound designer/editor/mixer with credits on Super Meat Boy, Donkey Kong Country Returns, SteamBirds, Realm of the Mad God, & Spewer.)
- Dylan Fitterer (Creator of music-puzzle racer and 2008 IGF Excellence in Audio winner Audiosurf.)
- David Lloyd & Larry Oji (Respectively, musician and founder of game music site OverClocked ReMix; OCR head and soundtrack director on Capcom's Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix.)
- Matt Piersall (Founder of GL33K, the indie audio studio behind games like Splosion Man, Comic Jumper, Epic Mickey & Donkey Kong Country Returns.)
- Emily Ridgway (Music director and audio designer on games like BioShock, Brutal Legend & Costume Quest.)
- William Stallwood & Dain Saint (Respectively, creative director & technical director of Cipher Prime Studios, creator of ambient music puzzler Auditorium.)
- Rich Vreeland (Composer, sound designer, netlabel curator, and chiptune musician performing as Disasterpeace.)
- Josh Whelchel (Independent composer behind The Spirit Engine 2 & Bonesaw: The Game and works for UbiSoft, MTV and Zynga.)

Some Clues About the Secret Characters in Super Meat Boy PC

November 11, 2010 3:07 PM | Michael Rose

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If you own the Xbox version of Super Meat Boy, rejoice! The first free DLC chapter called The Sewers of Dross is coming on November 21st, and will feature 20 new levels playable using Gish. Exciting!

As for you PC gamers, Ed and Tommy have also given some clues as to who the secret characters in the PC version are going to be. Apart from the silhouetted picture above, they've also given this away:

"one of them sticks, one of them dashes, one of them changes form and one of them isn't organic"

Who could they be? If you think you know, make sure you enter our competition to win a copy of the game!

Indie Game Links: Indies Going Social

November 11, 2010 3:00 PM | Tim W.

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

Semi Secret: Launch Every SteamBirds
"We've been working for a few months now on translating SteamBirds to the iPhone and iPod, with new art by Adam and soundtrack by Daniel Baranowsky. We're really happy with how it turned out and hope that you'll check it out and let us know what you think."

Gamasutra: Indies Need To Develop Social Games
"Speaking as part of MIGS 2010, Playdom designer Scott Jon Siegel went to bat for social games, explaining that the sector has a lot of potential ignored by developers due to broad generalizations. Siegel said he believes that it's time indies start taking social games seriously."

Gamasutra: EA Partners Signs Three Indie Titles For XBLA, PSN, PC
"EA Partners will release Vanguard Games' Gatling Gears, Borne Games' The Fancy Pants Adventures and Trapdoor's Warp onto XBLA, PSN and PC next year, expanding the publisher's portfolio of digitally-distributed indie games which currently includes Hothead Games' DeathSpank and Klei Entertainment's Shank."

Gamasutra: Get Ready for a Fancy Pants Adventure
"EA have announced that the super popular flash hit The Fancy Pants Adventures will be making its way to the Xbox Live Arcade and PlayStation Network, complete with an entire new story to go through. The game is currently set to be released in the Spring of 2011."

Max and the Magic Marker: Max is now portable
"Looking sweeter than ever and with the best drawing mechanic to date, Max & the Magic Marker is now officially out for Windows Phone 7 worldwide. The game has a brand new hint system and drawing with your finger directly on the screen makes it the most accessible version of Max & the Magic Marker to date."

Wolfire Games Blog: YouTube Beard Drive Update
"Two days ago we started a YouTube subscriber drive to coincide with the shaving of my 2-year development beard. I pledged that if we could get to 5,000 subscribers in two weeks, I would live stream the shaving of the beard."

YoYo Games: Publishing with YoYo, iOS Base Line Spec
"For those who are interested in submitting games through the YoYo Game Store, we now have the Base Line Spec up on the wiki. These are the requirements we require for you to adhere to."

distractionware: Minigame Roundup
"Very soon I hope to post about how Nexus City is progressing, but first I want to catch up on a few minigames I made recently that I never got around to posting."

Browser Game Pick: Chaos Invaders (Bit Battalion)

November 11, 2010 12:37 PM | Michael Rose

chaosinvaders.PNGWe got a barrage of positive comments when we posted up the trailer for Chaos Invaders a couple of months ago, so it's great to see the game finally land on the interwebs. What looks like a Space Invaders clone turns out to be something rather different.

Shooting an alien causes it to fall down, and moving your ship in the way will catch it. The idea is to catch multiple aliens on your ship, then click to fire them all back up the screen and knock even more down. Shooting aliens off the top of the screen will add time to your counter, while allowing aliens to fall off the bottom will reset your combo. There's plenty of variety to be found, with boss battles that fall apart as you fight them, levels baseds around simply catching falling aliens, and strong barriers than need to be blasted apart with aliens rather than your normal fire.

All good fun, with great music too - I can definitely see this one becoming a big online hit over the next week. Give it a play over at Kongregate.

Trailer: Xycle2 (Radix and Scattle)

November 10, 2010 8:32 PM | Michael Rose


Xycle 2 is a sequel to Scattle's side-scrolling, retro-looking bike-em-up Xycle from 2008. It's all about precision jumps and timing, with some nice bike chases and fireball dodging thrown in for good measure.

The game will be available to play sometime towards the end of November/early December.

Browser Game Pick: Enemy 585 (Nitrome)

November 10, 2010 6:17 PM | Michael Rose

enemy.PNG
If you're one of those people who thinks Nitrome games are full of great ideas but lack the right execution, Enemy 585 probably isn't going to sway your opinion. After a Mario style game ends, a lone bad guy is left to walk left and right for the rest of his days.

That is, until a helpful block decides to help him out. The idea is to move into positions such that Enemy 585 can climb up to new areas and move backwards through the level - eventually he wants to move all the way back through the game and reach the very beginning. It's a great concept, made all the more interesting by the other remaining baddies who mutter 'Up... Down... Up...' as you move past them.

Unfortunately, it can also be pretty frustrating too. Make a wrong move and you may well watch our little fella walk right off a cliff with no means of stopping him. The game also decides not to tell you any of the finer points of play until later on - for example, you can in fact spin your block by pressing space, and while Enemy 585 is stood on your block, if you hold a direction you can move even so slightly.

Still, while it has faults, Enemy 585 is worth playing just for the concept. Go play over at Nitrome.

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