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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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Trailer: Bastion (Supergiant Games)

July 16, 2011 12:00 AM | Tim W.

Here's the new launch trailer for Supergiant Games' upcoming action RPG Bastion, due out on the Xbox Live Arcade service as the first of five titles to be released weekly in the Summer of Arcade promotion. The game should be available to purchase starting July 20th for 1200 Microsoft Points, and a PC version is also expected sometime later this year.

You can find more information, screenshots and gameplay videos of Bastion over at Supergiant's official site, or read Cass' hands-on impression of the game right here.

Trailer: They Bleed Pixels (Spooky Squid)

July 12, 2011 6:14 PM | Cassandra Khaw

What is it about thick, ominous-looking grimoires and little girls? You can't seem to keep them away from each other. Granted, unless you're the long-suffering parents of the unfortunate tot, I don't see much to complain about. Spooky Squid's upcoming 'They Bleed Pixels' is a fast-paced, 'gothic lo-fi' platformer filled with an unending stream of Lovecraftian monstrosities and the little girl who must battle them all.

It also looks brilliant. Forget everything else, I'm in love with its sadistic checkpoint system. They Bleed Pixels doesn't so much offer you the opportunity to engage in stylish murder sprees as much as it demands that you do so. There's a checkpoint meter that will fill up as you fling monsters into saws, pits and spikes. The more phenomenal your homicidal rampage, the more checkpoints you get. Otherwise, tough luck.

Creative Director Miguel Sternberg stated in the press release, "We wanted to create a game that demands that players excel at both combat and platforming. Want a checkpoint before you take on that series of spike-lined pits? Then dash into the nearest enemy launch him in the air and juggle him into that nearby skill saw.".

They Bleed Pixels will be coming to Xbox Live Indie Games Summer 2011. It seems like a PC port is also on the cards. However, we probably won't hear too much about it up until Spooky Squid Games is done with the XBLIG launch.

For more information, you can check out the official Spooky Squid Games website.

Trailer: City Tuesday (Chris Zukowski)

July 12, 2011 3:00 PM | Michael Rose

City Tuesday is the story of a man who is stuck in the same five minutes, and must replay them over and over again until he is able to stop a terrorist attack that threatens to blow up the city.

Described as an 'open world platformer', your job is to slowly but surely learn the layout of the city, find all the positions of the bombs, and then work out a way to stop them going off. Maybe you can get some people to help you - but who's going to believe a crazy guy who says he's stuck in a time loop? Or perhaps you can stop the terrorists yourself... but how can you get to all those places in just five minutes?

With it's unique art style, City Tuesday is due for release sometime in the next couple of months on Xbox Live Indie Games. Developer Chris Zukowski hopes that it will be chosen to be featured as part of the Xbox Live Indie Games Summer Uprising.

Game Developer Debuts Free 2011 Game Career Guide Issue

July 11, 2011 8:41 PM | Eric Caoili

For the fourth year running, Game Developer magazine's annual Game Career Guide issue -- which aims to help students and aspiring developers secure a job in the game industry -- will be given away for free.

This special issue is now available in digital form for free, and includes over 100 pages of content targeted at those interested in sinking their teeth into game development.

This year's Game Career Guide builds upon the success of the 2010 issue, which saw more than 300,000 online page views from more than 37,000 people, and was physically distributed to over 30,000 people worldwide at major video game consumer and trade shows, including Penny Arcade Expo, GDC, and more.

The 2011 Game Career Guide includes a helpful tutorial on how to make a basic 3D game in Unity, and provides a detailed breakdown of the essentials of pixel animation. Also included is a feature on AI pathfinding, with diagrams and examples that should help beginners wrap their heads around the basics.

In addition, the Game Career Guide issue will provide a version of Game Developer's handy salary survey, which offers a comprehensive breakdown of entry level jobs in professional and indie game development.

Moment Games Announces Life in the Dorms

July 11, 2011 1:03 AM | Cassandra Khaw


Social media is everywhere these days. You can't turn sideways without bumping into something associated with it. But while not unknown to the video game industry (What's up, Zynga?!), this may be the first time that social media has served as a vital in-game plot device. Well, 'vital' may be an understatement. According to what I understand, it seems that 'Flitter' is a mandatory component of Life in the Dorms, a quirky-looking adventure game revolving around the life of a neurotic college freshman. Without it, you'll be unable to solve many of the game's puzzles, something I have mixed feelings about.

On one hand, it's a delicious nod to our reliance on social media. On the other, I'm not sure if I really wanted more social media with my game. Due for release sometime at the end of this year on XBLIG, Life in the Dorms is Moment Games' sophomore production and the spiritual successor to Office Disorders. In addition to Flitter, Life in the Dorms is apparently going to feature ramen, a potentially homicidal roommate, no zombies and ... surgery.

I'll be honest. I have no idea how it all correlates or any clue as to how impressive the final product will be .Heck, there's only been one screenshot so far. Nonetheless, I imagine we'd find out soon enough. For more information, you can check out the official website here.

XBL Indie Game Pick: Platformance: Temple Death (Magiko Gaming)

July 10, 2011 5:00 PM | Michael Rose


Platformance 2 expands on the original concept, with a whole new castle to navigate and many, many more tools of death that will destroy you over and over again. You are an adventurer on a quest to save the busty beauty from her prison, and depending on the difficulty level you choose, this is going to prove tricky, very tricky, or controller-breakingly tricky.

The idea is that the entire game is just one huge level which weaves in and out of itself - the floor of each area is then the ceiling of another later area. There are spikes, swinging blades, arrows, rapids, piranhas, bombs, fire, and much, much more. Temple Death feels a lot more beefy in terms of content that the original game, with lots of subtle changes to the level here and there as you ramp up the difficulty, and online highscore boards so you can check out just how rubbish you are at the game.

It's a dollar! 80 Microsoft Points, to be exact - and well worth it too. Grab Platformance: Temple Death from the Xbox Live Marketplace.

Platformance 2 trailer

Awesomenauts Reveals First Character - Froggy G

July 7, 2011 3:21 PM | Cassandra Khaw

I've ranted extensively about Awesomenauts more than once before and for good reason. A 2D side-scrolling MOBA, Awesomenauts is, in a nutshell, a more comical, stream-lined version of DotA. That said, even if you're unfamiliar with the acronyms being flung about, you really should think about giving Awesomenauts a whirl when it comes out anyway if for no other reason than the fact it has Froggy G.

A belligerent gun-for-hire, Froggy G is a native of the marsh pond ghettos of the planet Ribit IV and a beatboxing street dancer of questionable renown. He's also a character you can play. I don't normally make a habit of waving videos like this at people but the sheer silliness of it all deserved a one-time exception, I think.

Trailer: Project Mimicry (Monobanda)

July 7, 2011 11:45 AM | Cassandra Khaw

Back in February, I remember being enchanted with one of the IGF Nuovo entries. Less a game and more an interactive piece of digital horticulture, Bohm had been a surprisingly lovely find amidst the chaos of GDC 2011. I haven't heard anything of the game since then but it seems that Monobanda has not been resting on their laurels.

A few days ago, Monobanda's Niki Smit brought their latest endeavor to my attention. Entitled Project Mimicry, the company's newest project is a rather literal intepretation of the concept of sandbox games. While I would rattle on about Mimicry, it might be more prudent to watch the trailer.

Project Mimicry really is a charming twist to the whole idea of augmented realities but I can't help but wonder about the trouble pet owners might find themselves in if they were purchase the game and all the peripherals, if you know what I mean.

Those interested in the game should probably check it out here on the official website.

Trailer: ibb and obb (Richard Boeser)

July 4, 2011 12:00 PM | Michael Rose

Coming to PSN later this year and Steam in early 2012, ibb and obb is a co-op platformer that requires players work together to tackle a variety of obstacles and enemies. Players can dive through the floor and walk upside down, allowing them to kill enemies from below and allow the other player to progress.

It sounds like a familiar concept that has been done numerous times before, but watch the above video and you'll start to get an idea of how ibb and obb may well be something a little bit different. The key idea is that momentum is kept when falling through the floor, so if you jump off a high ledge (or your friend), you can launch yourself onto a ligher area below the surface.

There's also a single player mode that sees one player controlling both characters using the dual sticks on the PS3 controller, although developer Richard says that "it's pretty hard and only for those who like to give their brain a solid workout". As far as co-op gaming goes, looks like it's going to be fun! Check out the official site for more details.

2012 Independent Games Festival Opens Submissions

June 30, 2011 2:53 PM | Michael Rose

IGF2012.jpgOrganizers have officially opened submissions for the 2012 Independent Games Festival, being held at the Game Developers Conference 2012 in San Francisco next March 5-9.

The Independent Games Festival is the longest-running and highest-profile independent video game festival, summit, and showcase, and is now accepting entries to its 14th annual edition, with deadlines in the Main and Student Showcase categories by October 17 and October 31 respectively, and finalists to be announced in January 2012.

All games selected as finalists will be available in playable form at the IGF Pavilion on the GDC show floor from March 7-9, 2012, and will compete for nearly $60,000 in prizes, a significant increase from last year.

This includes the high-profile $5,000 Nuovo Award, honoring abstract, short-form, and unconventional video game development, and previously won by designers including Jason Rohrer (Between) and Messhof (Nidhogg).

In addition, awards for Excellence in Visual Art, Audio, and Design, Technical Excellence, Best Mobile Game, the Best Student Game, and the Audience Award each now receive a $3,000 prize, and the signature Seumas McNally Grand Prize for the independent game of the year (won by Mojang's Minecraft in 2011) has been increased by 50 percent to a record $30,000.

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