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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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XBLIG Pick: Chronoblast (n0rty games)

March 3, 2013 8:00 AM | Danny Cowan

Shoot-'em-up fans, perk up your ears: n0rty games has released Chronoblast, a DoDonPachi-inspired vertically scrolling shooter for the Xbox Live Indie Games service.

Chronoblast offers all of the options and extras you'd expect from a high-profile shoot-'em-up release, and allows players to scale and rotate the screen to suit multiple monitor types and orientations. The game itself is great stuff, too -- the presentation quality is impressive, and the level design was obviously the work of someone familiar with the bullet-hell genre. At just 80 Microsoft points ($1), it's well worth your time. Just be warned that the action can get rather...intense.

OUYA hires Kellee Santiago to lure in more indie developers

March 3, 2013 12:00 AM | Staff

kellee santiago.jpgNewsbrief: Kickstarter-funded Android console Ouya has hired thatgamecompany co-founder Kellee Santiago as the head of its developer relations.

"OUYA gets it. This is the first console company that really understands how important it is to remove the barriers to development," Santiago said in an official company statement.

Santiago left thatgamecompany last year. Titles shipped during her tenure were Fl0w, Flower and last year's Journey, all for the PlayStation 3.

More on the Ouya website.

[Frank Cifaldi wrote this article originally for sister site Gamasutra.]

Kickstarter Projects: Another Castle (Uncade)

March 1, 2013 9:00 PM | Danny Cowan

One-man indie studio Uncade (David Byers, creator of Love Me Not) seeks Kickstarter funding for Another Castle, a multiplatform digital release that "combines classic platforming gameplay with the randomness of a roguelike."

"You play as Andy, a dude who's looking for a random item, whether it be a kick ass magical sword, a wizard hat, or royalty," Byers explains. "To find the item you must run, jump, and fight your way through a randomly generated castle. When you beat the game, you sadly won't get the item, as it's always in another castle. Instead, the item is now unlocked and can be found in future playthroughs of the game."

A prototype version is free to play online (Unity plugin required), with downloadable versions available for Windows and Mac. Backers who pledge $10 or more will receive DRM-free copies of Another Castle for Windows, Mac, Linux, and Android upon completion, along with beta access during the game's development. Pledge $15 and you'll also receive the Wii U version, once it's available.

[via Joystiq]

XBLIG Pick: Voxel Runner (DizzyPixels)

March 1, 2013 6:00 PM | Danny Cowan

Xbox Live Indie Games developer DizzyPixels has launched Voxel Runner, an autoscrolling 2D platformer that equips players with new abilities as they progress through its 30 included levels.

Voxel Runner plays somewhat like a combination of Bit.Trip Runner and The Impossible Game, though it's shorter than the former, and its checkpointing is more frequent and forgiving than the latter. While it's not particularly difficult at first, the game introduces new challenges frequently, and by the time you reach the final few levels, you'll be stringing together jumps, slides, and swings at an alarming rate.

(Bonus: if you enjoy hearing unskilled players scream and curse at their televisions, there are already several unwatchable playthrough videos up on YouTube. This basically proves that Voxel Runner is a worthy successor to The Impossible Game.)

Voxel Runner is priced at 80 Microsoft points ($1).

Retro City Rampage does better on PSN than Steam, XBLA; dev releases 8-bit ROM

March 1, 2013 3:00 AM | John Polson

"Indies should definitely jump onto the PS Vita," Retro City Rampage developer Brian Provinciano tweeted. "RCR's sold much more on PSN than XBLA and more on PS Vita than even PS3." He also states, "Steam's done far better than XBLA too, but PSN has still done the best."

Joystiq noticed the flurry of tweets from the developer earlier this week that discussed how well his game has done and the varying ease of developing on each platform. It will be interesting to see if upcoming WiiWare sales changes this at all.

The NES ROM City Rampage add-on detailed in the video above commemorated the WiiWare release today. PC owners get the ROM update, as well.

PC/XBLIG Pick: Dynasty of Dusk (Tropic Tundra Games)

February 28, 2013 6:00 PM | Danny Cowan

Wisconsin-based student team Tropic Tundra Games has launched its retro-styled RPG Dynasty of Dusk for the Xbox Live Indie Games service and for Windows via Desura and Amazon.

There's a lot to like about Dynasty of Dusk. The battle system is clever and varied, and leveling proceeds at a brisk, satisfying pace. The skill tree system (which is spread across multiple classes) gives you a lot of room to customize your character in order to suit your playstyle, too, and I appreciate the way the game halts random encounters in an area once you're sufficiently leveled-up. Give this one a try, especially if you're a fan of throwback RPGs like Breath of Death VII.

The Windows version of Dynasty of Dusk is priced at $2.99, while the XBLIG edition is available for 80 Microsoft points ($1).

Mighty Switch Force 2 coming to 3DS, WayForward "hopefully" heading to Steam

February 27, 2013 6:55 PM | John Polson

Switch Force.pngWayForward's Austin Ivansmith revealed that a sequel to last year's panel-switching platformer Mighty Switch Force is on the way to the 3DS eShop during the first half of 2013, he said via a live chat with Destructoid's Jonathan Holmes. This marks the first sequel for the "Mighty" series that began as DSiWare in 2009.

The game's protagonist, Patricia Wagon, will be returning, but she will be doing something other than police work. I'm happy to report that Jake "Virt" Kaufman will work on the soundtrack, too.

Of particular note, Ivansmith seems optimistic when asked about having WayForward games to Steam. "We don't, not right now.... hopefully we will." I followed up with Ivansmith about this and will update if he responds.

Finally, I wanted to point out that The Sup, Holmes? series has been rather indie-focussed as of late. I posted a couple extra talks along with Ivansmith's full talk after the jump to enjoy.

Skullgirls DLC Character Successfully Crowdfunded

February 27, 2013 3:05 PM | Danny Cowan

Less than 24 hours after launching an Indiegogo campaign to fund the creation of a new character for its acclaimed 2D fighter Skullgirls, Lab Zero has successfully met its initial funding goal of $150,000, and is well on its way toward meeting its stretch goals.

Money raised from the campaign will fund Squigly, a unique ranged stance character that will be added to the PlayStation Network and Xbox Live Arcade versions of Skullgirls as free downloadable content. Three months after Squigly's launch, the DLC will rise in price to $5, though Lab Zero assures that "if you get it while it's free, it'll stay free forever."

Now that the project has reached its first stretch goal of $175,000, Squigly will also get her own stage, story mode, and theme created by Castlevania series composer Michiru Yamane. The next stretch goal of $375,000 will fund the creation of Big Band, the first male member of Skullgirls' playable cast.

Backers who pledge $30 or more will receive a Steam code for the upcoming PC version of Skullgirls, along with PC beta access and an exclusive Team Fortress 2 hat. Higher pledges are eligible for awards such as t-shirts, soundtracks, and Steam codes for Marvelous AQL's time attack RPG Half Minute Hero.

Hell Yeah! studio Arkedo goes on hiatus

February 26, 2013 3:00 AM | Staff

hell yeah.jpgHell Yeah! developer Arkedo Studio has gone on hiatus after seven years, with the co-founders moving on to different projects -- although they refused to say that the indie studio is completely dead.

The French studio's co-founder Camille Guermonprez told Gamasutra just over a year ago that the company was sailing on "a pretty rough sea," and was very touch-and-go about its future.

Following the release of Hell Yeah! last year, both Guermonprez and Aurelien Regard have now decided to move on and work on their own projects, while they still have money left in the bank.

"Our team has grown throughout the years and we didn't have any secured project on sight after Hell Yeah!," admitted Regard.

As a result, the duo is looking to get new projects underway with the money it does have. "It is important to know when to stop," he added.

Sounds Shapes DLC, Patch Deploying March 12th

February 25, 2013 7:00 PM | Danny Cowan

Queasy Games announced that its PlayStation Network rhythm-platformer Sounds Shapes will receive a new batch of DLC levels on March 12th, along with a patch that adds the oft-requested ability to play community-made stages while offline.

Further details are not yet known, but Queasy Games assures that the new content will be available as a cross-buy item, and players will get access to the new levels for both the PlayStation 3 and PS Vita versions of Sound Shapes with a single purchase.

[via Joystiq, PSN Stores]

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