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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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They Bleed Pixels Drips from XBLIG to PC

August 8, 2012 2:00 PM | John Polson

Spooky Squid announced today that gothic lo-fi platforming beat'em up They Bleed Pixels has moved from XBLIG to Steam. Previewed late last year as an XBLIG title, Spooky has spent an extra year polishing, creating more levels and adding Steamworks features including leaderboards, achievements and cloud saving.

Miguel Sternberg is the main man behind Spooky Squid and was featured here as part of the Freeware Arcade Games of 2008 with Night of the Cephalopods. Sternberg is a former co-founder of Capybara Games and helps run The Hand Eye Society, an indie game arts and culture group in Toronto, Canada.

The developer will announce a release date for They Bleed Pixels soon.

Browser Game Pick: Dual Custody (Badger Games)

August 8, 2012 12:00 PM | Danny Cowan

120807_dualcus.jpg

Max Badger has completed work on Dual Custody, a charming HTML5 platformer that challenges players to carry a baby to safety throughout multiple trap-filled levels.

Though baby Sammy can't fend for himself, his nanny Robot 8 is invincible, and can withstand attacks from the rocket launchers and saw blades that fill the game's levels. Certain sequences demand that Robot 8 release Sammy from its grip -- be careful where you set him down, though, as his health will slowly drain when he's on his own.

The Doggybag: a freeware super indie bundle of doom

August 8, 2012 7:30 AM | Konstantinos Dimopoulos / Gnome

doggybag.pngVacillating Dichotomy, the mad scientists of gaming formerly known as Terrier Games (also Karl Adamson), are celebrating their (well, his) four years of creating fun digital contraptions by bundling 27 games in one brilliant doggybag and giving it away for free. Just follow this glorious link and grab all sorts of generally demented games ranging from text adventures and platformers to arena shooters and the terrifically named Imagine: Embittered Videogames Journalist. Oh, and do keep in mind that most of the included games sport excellent names, outrageous humour and some truly intriguing gameplay ideas. Also, they are all very weird indeed, unashamedly silly and either elegant or simple.

Then again*, the Advanced Going Down the Shops for a Pint of Milk Simulator is the only interactive offering I've ever experienced to so eloquently showcase the difference between a proper simulation and an arcade reimagining of reality and is thus a most important ludological statement with obvious philosophical extensions. Or maybe not. Maybe it's the Angry Street Wanking Man that's the most important game in this bundle, what with its stern attack on sexism and stylized graphics that transcend the petty drive towards realism. Or could the rather more obvious Smash The State breakout-clone be it?

Can't say for sure; better grab The Doggybag and see for yourselves.

(* not really, no)

Browser Game Pick: Rat Chaos (j chastain)

August 8, 2012 5:00 AM | Konstantinos Dimopoulos / Gnome

rat chaos.pngI really wouldn't want to spoil anything, so, uhm, go play Rat Chaos will you? It's weird, sports a really odd use of the English language, will make you both laugh and wonder, features some interesting drawings and was created with Twine.

Piracy is a fact of life, so why not just have fun with it?

August 8, 2012 3:00 AM | Staff

under the ocean gama.jpgTackling PC game piracy is always an on-and-off talking point for indie developers. Every now and again a studio throws out awful piracy rate figures for its latest release, and the internet goes ballistic over how terrible it is and what can be done to prevent it. These discussions usually culminate in DRM being called the worst thing to happen to video games ever.

One indie studio recently took a different approach to piracy, and ended up being called out by a number of other devs for actually advocating piracy.

Under the Ocean, a fully-fledged sequel to 2010 free download Under the Garden, launched as a paid alpha build earlier this year, costing $7 for the base version of the game, and $25 for a special edition.

However, there is also a third free "version" of the game, titled "Annoying Cockroach Edition" -- although it's not really a separate version at all. It's simply a humorous acknowledgment that some people (well, "cockroaches") will skip the two legitimate options for obtaining the game, and just pirate it.

"Pirate the game when it comes out," the cockroach version's features list reads. "Not much we can do to stop you, is there?" There was even a link to infamous torrent website Pirate Bay, giving visitors access to a free, pirated version of the game.

Teaser: Starship Corporation (David Murent)

August 7, 2012 7:00 PM | Cassandra Khaw



David Murent, who claims no prior knowledge of programming outside of his dabbling with Adobe Director and Flash, is the creative mind behind Starship Corporation, a real-time strategy game with a few interesting features. Starship Corporation will have you taking command of an intergalactic corporation and working towards profit and power. What I find most interesting about the upcoming title is the advertised depth of the whole spaceship and planetary installation building thing. There will be roughly fifty rooms to work with. Once you've built the perfect design, you'll then be able to take on a series of missions to see how well the crew reacts to things. If all goes well, the ship will get a decent rating. If not, well, it's time to go back to the drawing board.

Starship Corporation's website is a fairly informative one and can be found here. The project also has an IndieGoGo campaign that is looking for contribution.

Sonic the Hedgehog-Inspired Greatness: Freedom Planet Demo

August 7, 2012 5:00 PM | John Polson

Stephen DiDuro/GalaxyTrail's demo of Freedom Planet for Windows is a breath of fresh air for indie platformers, filled with large, colorful worlds to blaze through without brutal punishment or rote memorization, all to the tune of utterly epic non-chiptune music.

Diehard Sonic fans may be offended by how many pages Freedom Planet takes from its inspiration, but I didn't mind. It felt 70-80% as fast as old Sonic, but the spectacles like loops and wall runs weren't as magical to do or watch.

Touch damage is gone, making the game somewhat easier than Sonic. Also gone is the familiar ground dash, but in its place is a special meter that allows for eight directional air-dashing like Sparkster of Rocket Knight Adventures. The hidden red coins of later-gen Sonic take the form of 10 cards placed around the huge areas.

Comparisons aside, Freedom Planet plays and sounds like butter. Sample the audio after the jump.

Browser Game Pick: Myriad (Porpentine)

August 7, 2012 4:00 PM | Cassandra Khaw

myriad.jpg Porpentine's Myriad is an entrancing, surreal little 'choose your own adventure' sort of game that offers very few answers to the wealth of questions it will inevitably inspire in its players. Filled with allusions towards a post-apocalyptic environment, Myriad isn't particularly shy about killing you. There are a lot of ways to die in this game. It's also peppered with a fair bit of swearing -- those who cannot abide by such things should probably reconsider playing. As for everyone else, however, this will likely be a captivating experience.

Play the game here.

First Trailer of Sir, YABH and Free Procedural Generation Experiment (Big Robot)

August 7, 2012 3:00 PM | John Polson

Not one but two Big Robot updates this week: a trailer of the alpha version of Sir, You Are Being Hunted and a free game from the company's lead programmer. The former will debut in 2013 across all PC platforms and is an open-world, procedurally-generated action game of "being hunted by tweedpunk gentlemen automatons and their faithful hounds." Though 2013 seems so far away, Jim Rossignol stated in the game's forums that a pre-purchase or Kickstarter effort will launch "in the next couple of months."

What's the most indie thing to do, when you realize you will need support from your fans? Why, you release something else for free! In all fairness, lead programmer Tom Betts' Ico-inspired In Ruins for Mac and Windows is part of his academic research, which can't be commercial.

Freeware Game Pick: We Invade Again (iRhymeWithRawr)

August 7, 2012 2:00 PM | John Polson

weinvadeagain.jpgWindows freeware We Invade Again is a fun, fast Galaga-like with alternating rounds of dive-bombing enemies and huge bosses. Players can only move left to right; running into either wall causes an interesting bounce effect I can't recall experiencing recently in a shmup.

I also don't know if there's a win condition, but surviving requires avoiding enemies and bullets. Damage taken lowers the ship's stability meter, but dealing damage to enemies rebuilds the meter.

Also worth checking out is We Invade Again's inspiration: tunnel-shooter Sync Simple.

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