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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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Browser Game Pick: Uirdz (Amalgames)

January 17, 2013 3:00 PM | John Polson

Uirdz.pngUirdz is a single-screen puzzle-platformer where players drag the words of the title of the room into the play area. Some of the words do things related to their meaning after they are placed.

For those platforming masochists and secret hunters, carefully placing certain words or punctuation marks or taking the high road can open up alternate exits that lead to extra challenging levels. The developer tells me that beating all the target times on every level including the secret levels will unlock a harder version of the game's boss. Beating that provides a special ending I hope to one day experience vicariously through IndieGames' readers!

Overall, Uirdz is another fun platformer from Contraste developer Paste/Eric Rosenzweig/Supreme Overlord at Amalgames (indies and their alter egos, jeez)!

Top 10 (Free) Experimental Games of 2012

January 17, 2013 9:00 AM | Konstantinos Dimopoulos / Gnome

top10freeExperimantal.pngTen games and another fifteen honorable mentions and we still can't feel 100% happy with our Top 10 free experimental games of 2012 list. If there is one thing indie developers simply excel at, you see, is not just coming up with, but actually trying out and releasing games based on wild and at times radical ideas. Games so different, so innovative and so unique we can't help but describe as experimental.

The selection that follows hopes to showcase some of the very best of said games that you can play for free. Just don't expect it to cover each and every excellent new idea; there are simply far too many of them...

Super Crate Box, Thomas Was Alone devs share on new site stories of being bullied

January 17, 2013 3:00 AM | John Polson

beyond the final boss.jpgThe developers behind Super Crate Box, Thomas Was Alone, and more indie and AAA games have begun to share their stories about being bullied and how they've persevered via a new website called Beyond the Final Boss.

The man behind the passion project is Shahid Ahmad, the designer for the 1985 Atari game Chimera (recently recreated) and current Senior Business Development Manager at Sony Computer Entertainment Europe.

Ahmad was inspired to take action after joining a heated discussion online about bullying between Thomas Was Alone developer Mike Bithell and former PomPom and Introversion developer Byron Atkinson-Jones. Ahmad got their permission to repost parts of their story and went out to find more developers who were willing to discuss their bullying experiences.

Dustforce devs new screenshots, details for FPS Spire

January 16, 2013 6:00 PM | John Polson

spire-screenshot 2.pngThe developers behind 2012 hit platformer Dustforce have shared the first solid details and in-game screenshots for its new FPS, Spire.

Teased half a year ago in a Screenshot Saturday round-up, Woodley Nye of Hitbox Team discusses in a new blog post how the game revolves around ascending a "monolithic tower of unknown origin" with run-time generated levels that have "flow and character." Nye writes that everything "from the placement of the books on a shelf to the shape of the walls and floors will be generated with intention."

Browser Game Pick: Westerado (Ostrich Banditos)

January 16, 2013 3:00 PM | Danny Cowan

130115_westerado.jpg

Over at Adult Swim's website, indie developer Ostrich Banditos (High Vaultage) has released Westerado, a stylish action-adventure game with a western setting.

Westerado charges players with finding the arsonist responsible for burning down the protagonist's home and killing his family. You're given a surprising amount of freedom during your quest -- you can shoot and kill pretty much any NPC you encounter, for example. It's best to avoid unnecessary shootouts, however, as you only get three lives.

Interestingly, while Westerado doesn't save your quest progress, it does track and save discovered fast travel locations, making it easy to get back into the adventure after a restart. After the game ends, players are graded based on how many plot threads are resolved, making the game as much about piecing together the narrative as it is about exploration and discovery.

Indie Royale Launches Six-Game Snow Storm Bundle

January 16, 2013 1:30 PM | John Polson

Indie Royale, which recently shifted co-ownership to Tenshi Ventures, has just launched its Snow Storm Bundle with six indie games.

Included this time are point-and-click adventure (and top indie game of 2012) Resonance, RPG/city-builder Hinterland, 3D platformer RoboBlitz, PlayStation Network to PC high-speed arcade action hit StarDrone, RTS game Project Aftermath, and shooter/platformer RobotRiot. Finally, those that pay $8+ get Pixeljam's ambient electronic album Planeteri, along with a neat visualizer.

The full announcement, along with platform compatibility, is at Indie Royale's blog.

Puzzle-RPG 10,000,000 Hits Steam

January 16, 2013 12:00 PM | Danny Cowan

After a successful run in the iOS App Store, developer EightyEight Games has released Windows and Mac versions of its hit puzzle-RPG hybrid 10,000,000 via Steam.

10,000,000 is a Puzzle Quest-like match-three puzzler that hooks its players with extensive customization options and upgrades. Matched tiles result in quest progress -- match three or more sword icons to attack a monster, for instance -- and the discovery of precious stat-boosting loot. It's an addictive formula, to be sure, and a PC version was long overdue.

10,000,000 is regularly priced at $4.99, but is available for $3.99 during its launch week.

Browser Game Pick: Fractured (GroZZleR)

January 16, 2013 3:00 AM | John Polson

fractured.jpgCan't wait for Die Gute Fabrik's Where is My Heart? to come to PC? GroZZleR's puzzle platformer Fractured may be your next best bet. It ditches all the puzzling variables of the forest creatures from Where's My Heart? and focuses on really disorientating players.

Fractured shatters each stage's background into several pieces, and players have to use visual cues of those pieces to traverse 18 levels to help a lost boy find his mother. It's a fun 10-15 minute adventure that may just have you tilting your head in all sorts of directions.

[source: Bonte Games]

"Unfair" MMORTS Ironfell Releases for Free on PC and Mobile

January 15, 2013 4:00 PM | John Polson

After months of being in Beta for PCs, DataSmugglers' "unfair" MMORTS Ironfell is available to play for free on Android, most browsers, Mac, and Windows, with an iOS release forthcoming. The unfair advantage comes from the imbalance Ironfell allows. The longer people play, the more resources they get, and the stronger they become.

Your goal is not so simple: build your units and terrain to conquer over 42,000 realms on land and sea. Since Ironfell's mid-2012 beta release, it has added resource trading, epic ocean realms, naval battles and castles to its gameplay. Future expansions will include dinosaurs and time machines, too.

Those unsure where to start should check out this Ironfell beginner's guide. Players wanting stat and inventory boosts can visit the modestly priced extra resources store, too.

Valve Announces Fourth Batch of Steam Greenlight Games

January 15, 2013 2:00 PM | John Polson

greenlight box.jpgValve has announced the next 10 Greenlit games for Steam. Including the software titles, this brings the total projects greenlit to over 60. These games will be added over time, as the developers can now work with Valve to add their game when ready.

The titles for the fourth batch include the recent F2P-to-paid convert Akaneiro: Demon Hunters, the industry parodying DLC Quest, and grueling exploration platformer La-Mulana.

Other games found in this batch of Greenlight games are the following: Asylum, Eador: Masters of the Broken World, Leisure Suit Larry, MaK, The Age of Decadence, Unepic, and War For The Overworld.

The trailers for all of the latest Greenlit games are after the jump.

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