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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 April, 2011

Round-Up: Gamasutra Network Jobs, Week Of April 8

April 8, 2011 7:03 PM | Tom Curtis

In a busy week for new job postings, Gamasutra's jobs board plays host to roles across the world and in every major discipline, including opportunities at Telltale, Sucker Punch, Sony San Diego, and more.

Each position posted by employers will appear on the main Gamasutra job board, and appear in the site's daily and weekly newsletters, reaching our readers directly.

It will also be cross-posted for free across its network of submarket sites, which includes content sites focused on online worlds, cellphone games, 'serious games', independent games and more.

Some of the notable jobs posted this week include:

- Visceral Games Redwood Shores: Gameplay Engineer - Dead Space:
"Visceral Games creates top quality next-gen games that push the boundaries of action entertainment. We have over a decade of experience at delivering high-intensity action gaming experiences such as Dead Space, Dead Space 2, Dante's Inferno, and Army of Two. As a worldwide group of EA studios, we have the backing of a large company combined with the fun culture of small studios and the mandate to make original IP."

- High Moon/Activision: Concept Artist:
"High Moon Studios is an Activision developer located in Carlsbad, CA, a seaside city in San Diego County. We are focused on making highly successful AAA titles for PC, PS3 and Xbox 360. Our challenging work environment inspires creativity, innovation and teamwork. If you're ready to be challenged and be part of an amazing team, apply now!"

- Vicious Cycle: Graphics Programmer:
"Founded in 2000, Vicious Cycle Software is a wholly owned subsidiary of D3Publisher of America and a premier developer of interactive entertainment software for PlayStation 3, the Xbox 360, the Nintendo Wii , handhelds and PC. We currently have titles in development for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii and 3DS. We are a growing company doing big things and are looking for people to join our tightly knit team."

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Trailer: Krautscape (Team Krautscape)

April 8, 2011 4:03 PM | Michael Rose


Procedural racer Krautscape appears to be coming along nicely since we last saw it. For those who missed it the first time around, it's a multiplayer racer in which the driver in pole position gets to choose which way the track bends.

Depends on which part of the track the leading player drives on, the track will bend to accommodate them. In an attempt to catch up, other players can dive off the track, open their wings and fly across gaps to regain the lead. The game is in development for PC and Mac, and will be available sometime before June 2051.

Trailer: The Light of the Darkness (Fernando Rabello)

April 8, 2011 10:27 AM | Cassandra Khaw

The indie game scene is, for the most part, all about the people, the ideas and breaking the mold. From what I hear, it's also about the ramen and the sleepless night but this isn't the time and place for that. More than anything, however, I love hearing about game development from obscure corners of the world.

I had been taking a break from my review writing when I came across mention of The Light of the Darkness on the Indiegamer forums. A side-scrolling action-RPG that is being developed in Brazil, the Light of the Darkness boasts some pretty impressive production values so far. According to the post, the team had utilized four different type of animation techniques to deliver the content being premiered on their trailer.

In development for over a year and a half, the Light in the Darkness apparently has a demo that was created entirely in Flash and has received significant exposure since then. What got to me about the story, however, was the brutally frank tone that the poster used in reference to both the game development scene in Brazil as well as the problems that the team is facing in regards to delivering a finished commercial project.

Right now, it seems like the people behind The Light in the Darkness are looking for guidance and advice in regards to the kind of engines they could use and how best to proceed. Further details can be found on the Indiegamer forum itself over here and I encourage those capable of delivering constructive criticism to drop a note there.

Freeware Game Pick: Tottenham (Theta Games)

April 8, 2011 7:00 AM | Tim W.


In Tottenham you're a demolitions expert tasked with clearing a path between two stations, so that connecting subway lines can be built from one destination to another. Explosive charges can cause flying debris to kill you, so it's advised to stay clear of them whenever you decide to blow something up. You can use the space key to fire an explosive charge at any coloured tile, then make a run for it or keep your distance so that no harm is done to our blocky protagonist.

Your progress is autosaved whenever you complete a level, although the game won't take longer than half an hour to beat at most. Tottenham can be downloaded from both YoYoGames and Theta Games' site. (Windows, 2.53MB)

Interview: Skulls Of The Shogun Dev On Mixing Action, Strategy, And 16-Bit Influences

April 8, 2011 5:00 AM | Tim W.

The Penny Arcade Expo shows are pretty kind to the indies, even though they tried to hide their booths in the edges of the conference. One of the many standouts was Skulls of the Shogun, a back-to-basics turn-based strategy game.

Skulls of the Shogun has no menus or grid, and very quick round times for multiplayer. It was so quick that it felt less like Advance Wars and more like Starcraft for mortal humans.

Here, Jake Kazdal, founder of Skulls of the Shogun developer Haunted Temple Studios, talks about his transition from AAA development on titles like Space Channel 5 and Rez to striking out on his own as an indie.

Tell us about your team at Haunted Temple.

I’m the director, artist and art director. I also do a lot of the business development, marketing and PR. Borut Pfeifer is our lead engineer, he does the AI and a lot of the engine stuff, and a lot of game design. Ben Vance is the other engineer who does a lot of the graphics rendering stuff and a lot of the interface rending and technicality.

We share the game design responsibilities but I’m the point man with that stuff. There’s tons of design stuff to be done and all three of us are always working on that.

Browser Game Pick: Lesbian Spider-Queens of Mars (Anna Anthropy)

April 8, 2011 1:00 AM | Tim W.


Lesbian Spider-Queens of Mars is a 2D arcade game inspired by the classic Wizard of Wor, where you are in control of an eight-legged monarch who has to stop a slave uprising threatening to overthrow the queen from her seat of power. Players can trap slaves with the queen's spider silk, which is shot out automatically at whichever direction she is happen to be facing at that moment. You'll have to capture the bounded prisoners before they escape though, since they'll turn into a quicker and nastier version of themselves if you allow the slaves to wriggle free of your silky ropes.

Each maze (there are fourteen of them in total) has a set number of enemies that you have to defeat, indicated by a yellow gauge on the left side of the screen that decreases automatically whenever a slave is subdued. The exit to the next level will only be revealed once you've fulfilled this requirement. An extra life is awarded for every 25,000 points scored, and should you lose all of your lives you can use the continue option to resume playing from the last area attempted (you'll not be able to submit your current score if this feature is used).

Lesbian Spider-Queens of Mars can be played over at Adult Swim.

Browser (and Freeware?) Game Pick: 1916 - The War You Never Knew (Kriegsgraben Und Stormvogel)

April 8, 2011 12:00 AM | Cassandra Khaw

1916.jpg

Something about 1916 - The War You Never Knew terrifies me to no end. Set in the First World War, this survival-horror adventure will have you playing as a young soldier in the war. You have to get out, you have to survive and, for reasons that go unexplained, you have to deal with a pack of dinosaurs.

I'm personally not so sure about the prehistoric predators but I am very sure about the fact that 1916 - The War You Never Knew is one of the creepiest things I've seen on a browser. Imagine awakening alone in the trenches, couching and choking in a thick haze of mustard gas. Imagine being there without your friends, weapons or any clue as to what has happened. Thanks to the design of the trenches, there's no way you can really see around a corner, something that seldom bodes well when you're the main course at a reptilian buffet.

A student production stemming from Aalborg - Denmark, this unsettling little piece was produced in association with DADIU, The National Academy of Digital and Interactive Entertainment. Those interested in checking it out can do so at the team's official website.

Freeware Game Pick: Terra: The Legend of the Geochine (Imba Games)

April 7, 2011 10:12 PM | Michael Rose

terra.jpg
Terra: The Legend of the Geochine is a Source Mod from a DigiPen team. You've probably already gone to hit the link after hearing the name DigiPen given its reputation, and this particular game is no exception.

You play a friendly witch who finds a special Terra stone, and uses it to manipulate the world and eventually save it. Once you have the stone, you can hold the right mouse button to tilt the world, flipping switches, shifting blocks and generally causing chaos. It's such a beautifully realised idea, and makes for loads of great puzzles.

Make sure you download this one - it's brilliant. Grab it from the DigiPen site.

Indie Game Links: Sitting on a Gold Mine

April 7, 2011 3:00 PM | Tim W.

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

QCF Design: How do I economy, what is gold
"The freeware version of Desktop Dungeons has always been hampered by a slightly bothersome gold carryover system. In the fresh new version that we're working on, the economy has already undergone significant improvements."

Gamasutra: Minecraft Draws Over $33 Million In Revenue From 1.8M Paying Customers
"Indie mega-hit Minecraft continues to grow in popularity, with new sales breakdown data from creator Markus 'Notch' Persson suggesting the game has made over $33 million in revenue so far."

Photon Storm: Setting up FlashDevelop and Flixel for the first time
"The popularity of Flixel attracts a lot of new developers. Often they are coming into it not from Flash, but from other languages and game making tools. There's nothing wrong with this, but it's all too easy to fall at the first hurdle: simply getting a clean working development environment set-up."

GamerBytes: Joe Danger Developers On How To Succeed On PSN
"Back in early February the Casual Connect conference was on in Hamburg, Germany, where a lot of small or independent developers discussed their experiences on a variety of platforms. Obviously iPhone was a big talking point, but Sean Murray of Hello Games was there to talk about their experiences on the platform."

Infinite Blank: The Blank is back, let the bug hunting begin
"Infinite Blank's prerelease, named 0.2.9 for organizational purposes, is out. The world it uses, named 'prerelease', will serve as a temporary main world from now until proper relaunch of 0.3.0, at which point it will be archived. The temp world is up to 150 cells as of 24 hours after launch."

Gamasutra: Roughly 600,000 Sales For Super Meat Boy
"Tommy Refenes and Edmund McMillen said Super Meat Boy has sold roughly 600,000 copies across Xbox Live Arcade and Steam. The numbers combine an estimated 200,000 sales on Xbox Live Arcade and sales approaching 400,000 on Steam."

Metanet Software: March Update, Music and More
"Finally, after many years of meaning to get around to it, we have finally compiled a comprehensive compendium of miscellaneous music morsels for public perusal. We would say more about this, but we're exhausted from writing up the blurbs for each of the 200 tracks."

The Poppenkast: Blitzkast monthly
"The Poppenkast presents Blitzkast monthly, a friendly competition where developers have to create a game in under four hours. You can start any time you want within the blitz time frame, as long as you try not to go over four hours of total work."

Interviews with the Developers of GLiD, Chewy

April 7, 2011 12:00 PM | Tim W.


Here are a pair of new interviews with winners of the 2011 Independent Propeller Award competition, which recently ended with an awards presentation ceremony (hosted by Adam Saltsman and Meredith Molinari) and $150,000 in cash prize being given out to the up-and-coming developers. In the video above, Marco Marino and Matthew Thomas Woolven discussed how the concept for GLiD came about, their iterative development process, and the benefits of prototyping and playtesting new builds of your project. GLiD was the grand prize winning entry for the Independent Propeller Awards competition this year, and both developers are set to be awarded a publishing deal in addition to the $50,000 that they're already receiving from IndiePub as their reward.

Next up is an interview with the Happy Candy Co., the developers of the physics-based 2D platformer Chewy and Best Design category winner of the Independent Propeller Awards competition. Chris Hekman and Vladimir Bondarev talked about the difficulties of deliverinng a presentable student game, some of the inspirations for Chewy, and how they plan to make it appealing for everyone to play without sacrificing challenge.

The list of winners in each category of the competition can be found here.

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