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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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Does PlayStation Mobile Have What it Takes to Attract Indie Devs?

September 2, 2012 3:00 AM | John Polson

scb gama.jpgWhen the executives behind a giant corporation like Sony say they want to attract more small indie game makers to the PlayStation brand, they'd better have some decent developer support to attract this group of people, many of whom are already content with their do-it-yourself, bootstrapping ways.

It's hard to say how many indies will get on board with PlayStation Mobile, but there are early indications that small independent game developers see potential in the platform as an attractive and affordable way to streamline Android development for PlayStation Certified tablets and smartphones, and even the Vita. While typical Android developers may face rampant piracy and a fragmented market, PS Mobile offers a platform that runs one code on a virtual machine, making it a relatively simple proposition for the entire range of PlayStation Certified devices.

Despite a few bugs with the beta version of PS Mobile's standard development kit (SDK), developers who spoke to Gamasutra are optimistic for the platform. PS Mobile, formerly known as PlayStation Suite, promises several improvements over the company's small-games initiative, PlayStation Minis. Some of these improvements include a tenfold size limit increase for games (from 100 MB to 1GB) and much-needed PlayStation Network integration (including DLC, trophies and leaderboards).

Trailer: Super TIME Force (Capybara Games)

August 31, 2012 9:00 PM | Danny Cowan

If you aren't yet sufficiently pumped for Capybara Games' upcoming Xbox Live Arcade game Super TIME Force, the newly released trailer above should do the trick.

Super TIME Force is a side-scrolling run-and-gun shooter starring a gang of time-bending super-soldiers. Every time you die, you return to the start of the level. On subsequent playthroughs, however, you're accompanied by past versions of yourself who repeat every action you performed during previous attempts. Sounds wild!

Super TIME Force is on display at booth 872 at PAX Prime right this second. Well, unless you're reading this after the fact. You should go play it, along with all the other great stuff at PAX's Indie Megabooth.

Jason Rohrer's Diamond Trust Of London Now Available For Purchase

August 31, 2012 12:00 PM | Danny Cowan

120830_diamondtrust.png

Jason Rohrer's Kickstarter-funded Nintendo DS strategy game Diamond Trust of London can now be purchased directly from its official website.

This marks the first time the game has been publicly available for purchase since the Kickstarter campaign's conclusion. I just got my Special Edition copy of the game a couple of days ago, in fact -- it came with several tiny envelopes full of dirt or some dirt-like substance!

Diamond Trust of London is priced at $30. Less than 4,500 copies remain available, as of this writing.

WiiWare La-Mulana Resurrected, Will Launch September 20th In U.S. And Europe

August 31, 2012 10:00 AM | Danny Cowan

120830_lamulana.jpg

The cancellation of the WiiWare version of La-Mulana for North America and Europe earlier this year disappointed many fans of developer Nigoro's work, but expedited the launch of an English-translated PC version in July.

Those still waiting for a console version of La-Mulana will be able to play the game very soon, however. In an unexpected development, Nigoro announced that the WiiWare edition has been un-cancelled, and will be released in the United States and Europe on September 20th.

The Barcelona-based EnjoyUp Games (Chronos Twins DX, 99 Bullets) will publish the WiiWare version of the game, resuming the work that former La-Mulana publisher Nicalis abandoned in April, citing shifting marketplace conditions. The game will be priced at 1,000 Wii Points ($10) at launch, according to Nintendo's recently updated product page.

Get a job: IO Interactive and others hiring now on the Gamasutra jobs board

August 31, 2012 3:00 AM | Eric Caoili

In the latest postings over the last seven days, Gamasutra's jobs board plays host to roles in every major discipline, including opportunities at IO Interactive, Demiurge, Studios, and others.

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 Gamasutra's network of submarket sites, which includes content sites focused on independent games and more.

Some of the notable jobs posted this week include:

Harmonix Music Systems: Experienced Graphics Engineer:
"Harmonix is one of the world's leading independent game development studios. We're actively creating fun, groundbreaking, interactive experiences. Whether your work is on the existing universes of Rock Band and Dance Central or new worlds we're just beginning to create, it's an exciting time to be a part of this talented group of developers and gamers. Positions are open for exceptional artists, designers, coders and more. Curious what we're up to? Want to think big in our Cambridge-based urban hideout?"

IO Interactive: Generalist Tech Programmers:
"IO Interactive is the creative force behind some of the most talked-about PC and multiplatform videogames to emerge in the last decade. Starting with the praised and ground-breaking Hitman series, IO Interactive has since developed the cult classic Freedom Fighters, the innovative brand Mini Ninjas and the controversial Kane & Lynch series."

If You Don't Have Passion for Your Work, Why Bother?

August 30, 2012 2:00 AM | Staff

hotlinemiami.pngThe name Devolver Digital is slowly becoming a term that numerous indie developers want to be involved with. While the publisher initially began life focused on publishing a barrage of Serious Sam titles, more recently it has expanded its sights to great effect.

The publisher is now working with the likes of Dennaton Games (Jonatan "Cactus" Soderstrom and Dennis Wedin) on Hotline Miami and Vlambeer on Luftrausers, drumming up a serious amount of interest from the press and players alike, and all thanks to the contacts the company made through its work on the Serious Sam Indie Series last year.

"Devolver Digital started partly because our friends at Croteam wanted a partner for Serious Sam 3: BFE, and our team wanted to start a game label that still knew how to make the games industry fun for everyone," says Nigel Lowrie of Devolver in an interview with sister site Gamasutra. "One of the more unique elements in promoting Serious Sam 3: BFE was to tie the series back to its indie roots by working with top independent developers to make the three games in the Serious Sam Indie Series."

Through the initiative, Devolver began working more with the likes of Vlambeer and Mommy's Best Games, eventually also picking up Dennaton Games and Dungeon Hearts studio Cube Roots.

"The reason we are doing this is because these are the folks with the genuinely fresh and unique ideas in gaming," adds Lowrie. "Titles like Hotline Miami and Luftrausers were born out of love -- not some marketing spreadsheet or focus group."

Video: XNA Bullet Engine (Abraham Morales)

August 29, 2012 11:00 PM | Danny Cowan

Vorpal developer Abraham Morales has released a preview video for his in-progress bullet pattern-generation engine, which he hopes to release to the public following the completion of Vorpal 2.

The work he's put into it so far is impressive, and it could end up being a valuable resource for developers of bullet-hell shooters. It's also a nice surprise to hear that Vorpal 2 is in development -- the original game was a lot of fun, and the sequel will hopefully be even better.

[via @shmups]

Q&A: Leonard J. Paul on Retro City Chiptunes and Vessel Audio

August 29, 2012 6:40 PM | jeriaska

leonardpaulgdc_478.jpgPresenting on sound design for Vessel at GDC 2012

Leonard J. Paul is the lead composer on Vblank Entertainment's Retro City Rampage chiptune score and has designed and implemented the dynamic audio found in Strange Loop Games' Vessel. He will be performing at a pre-PAX showcase in Seattle on August 30 and speaking at the Gamercamp festival in Toronto this November.

We caught up with the audio engineer and musician to hear about his contributions to independently developed titles.

When you are creating a pastiche of '80s sounds, evoking NES games like Paperboy and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, how do you find an appropriate balance between emulating a classic game soundtrack while creating something unique to Retro City Rampage?

Leonard J. Paul: I grew up with the Commodore, not the NES. So when listening to Virt's FX3, I do not hear the references. It's like kids that were listening to rap music and adults going, "That's rare groove and funk. That's Parliament, Funkadelic and James Brown." I think for Matt (Norrin Radd), he will often study existing NES music and try to duplicate the sounds and notes as a reference. But for me, I go for the feel, which is how I avoid that issue of imitation.

We have also done the modern thing of having other indie games make appearances. I actually looked at the score for Super Meat Boy and did a chiptune cover, while for Bit.Trip Runner I duplicated the feel. I am really quite happy with that particular track, the "Bit Happy Song."

Kickstarter Project: Two Brothers (AckkStudios)

August 29, 2012 2:00 PM | John Polson

AckkStudios has just launched a modest $6,000 Kickstarter campaign to fund their action-adventure RPG Two Brothers for Windows, OSX, and Xbox 360. This RPG begins monochromatic and gradually changes as the brothers seek out new colors in their world and the afterlife.

Two Brothers seemed quite popular earlier this month. The team no doubt hopes that popularity will translate to financial support, so they may purchase the tools and licenses needed to bring Two Brothers to as many platforms as possible in January 2013.

Trailer: Fuel Overdose (I-Friqiya)

August 29, 2012 10:00 AM | Danny Cowan

Developer I-Friqiya aims to bring tactical action elements to the racing genre in Fuel Overdose, an upcoming downloadable title for Windows and the PlayStation 3.

Fuel Overdose is an overhead-view racer in which vehicles are equipped with an arsenal of weaponry, in addition to grappling hooks that can be attached to rival racers. Success still largely hinges on the player's driving ability, however, and if the action elements don't appeal to you, Fuel Overdose will also include a series of weapon-free challenges and time attack modes.

A release date for Fuel Overdose has not been announced.

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