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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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Get a job: Visceral Games, 2K Marin, and others hiring now on the Gamasutra jobs board

February 3, 2012 5:00 PM | 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 Visceral Games, 2K Marin, Sony Computer Entertainment America, 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:

Sony Computer Entertainment America LLC: Senior Online Programmer:
"Be a part of the most exciting and innovating computer entertainment in North America. Sony Computer Entertainment America LLC (SCEA) markets the PlayStation family of products and develops, publishes, markets, and distributes software for the PS one console, the PlayStation 2 and PlayStation 3 computer entertainment systems and the PlayStation Portable (PSP)."

2K Marin: FX Artist - XCOM:
"2K Games develops and publishes top-line PC, console, and handheld entertainment software with a strong concentration in three distinct categories: sports, high profile licenses and specialty product. Some of the hit titles in 2K's lineup include the critically-praised Bioshock, Sid Meier's Civilization IV, and The Darkness.

At 2K Games our goal is simple: Make games that are the best in the genre and have fun doing it. 2K Games is proudly developing a series of critically acclaimed games. Owned by Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. (NASDAQ: TTWO), 2K Games is a successful, stable company that produces high-quality titles every year."

Microchip Monsters Arrives For Android

February 3, 2012 10:00 AM | Danny Cowan

Peculiar Games lives up to its name with Microchip Monsters, an Android-exclusive title that the developer describes as a mixture of Peggle and "freaky-futuristic pinball."

Microchip Monsters has a striking minimalist visual style -- creator Patrick Casey cites inspiration from Nintendo's Bit Generations series for the Game Boy Advance. Gameplay involves bouncing a ball around a series of procedurally generated levels, with the goal being to set bombs and blow up wandering enemies.

Casey notes that the game's XM-format chiptune soundtrack (featuring the track "Electric Memories" by tracker artist Mr.Lou) is made possible thanks to his own custom-made port of libmodplug -- pretty hardcore stuff! Microchip Monsters is priced at 99 cents. A free ad-supported version is also available.

Road to the IGF: Vlambeer's Ridiculous Fishing

February 3, 2012 1:00 AM | John Polson

ridiculousfishing.jpgTwo-person Dutch indie developer Vlambeer may be getting headlines lately for its surprise iOS hit Super Crate Box, but it's another game -- one about the the sacred art of fishing -- that landed the team a nomination for Best Mobile Game at this year's IGF.

The upcoming Ridiculous Fishing might not satisfy traditional fly fishers, but that's what makes it unique. The game's protagonist is more interested in destroying the lake's inhabitants than he is in reeling in the biggest catch.

Ahead of the IGF show in March, Vlambeer speaks to Gamasutra about the inspiration behind the game, the other IGF finalists, and finally reveals the protagonist's true inspiration for slaughtering wildlife.

What background do you have making games?

The two of us at Vlambeer are complete opposites. On one end, there's the business and programming guy, Rami - he does the programming and the marketing and the business. He's a guy that drinks Coca Cola and likes Mass Effect and Assassin's Creed. On the other half, you have Jan Willem, who is the game designer - he likes games like Nikujin, 0Space & Flywrench.

Rami started programming in QBASIC when he was six - the only way to play a game was by compiling GORILLAS.BAS - he messed around the code a bit and never stopped doing that. He moved on to help out with some project doing marketing & business aspects.

Jan Willem basically learnt everything he knows at thepoppenkast.com, a group of super talented and inspiring people who never finish anything. Most of his time was spent jamming games in only a few hours but he also did a few proper games, slowly making a name in the indie indie scene.

We met up at our school, hated each other's guts, slowly reached the common conclusion that school wasn't for us and started Vlambeer.

Brain Connected's Puzzle-Platformer Somyeol Out Now For iOS

February 2, 2012 10:00 PM | Danny Cowan

Brain Connected's 2D puzzle-platformer Somyeol is now available as a free download in the iTunes App Store.

Created during 2011's Global Game Jam, Somyeol is an inventive title in which players control all characters within each level simultaneously. Depending on where each character is positioned, players may have to dodge multiple sets of obstacles at once, or solve puzzles with one group of characters while ensuring the safety of another group.

Somyeol is also available for the BlackBerry PlayBook and Android platforms.

Mobile Game Pick: Droopy Blocks

February 2, 2012 12:00 PM | Danny Cowan

Today marks the launch of Mechanical Butterfly Studios debut title Droopy Blocks, an iPad and Kindle Fire block puzzler featuring unique reassembly mechanics.

In Droopy Blocks, players must use planning and dexterity to reshape a collection of melted, gelatin-like blocks. As seen in the demonstration video above, blocks can be stretched out using the four Suckers at the edge of the screen. Complex shapes can be created by touching and holding parts of each Droopy Block and using the Suckers to stretch individual sides and segments.

Droopy Blocks creators also seem to be fond of live-action trailers -- always a plus! The first ten puzzles in Droopy Blocks are free, and 70 additional puzzles and a Championship mode can be unlocked for $1.99 via an in-app purchase.

iOS FPS Warm Gun Updates With New Map, Many Fixes

February 2, 2012 10:00 AM | Danny Cowan

Indie developer Emotional Robots has released what it calls a "massive update" for its Unreal-powered iOS multiplayer first-person shooter Warm Gun.

While the game's initial release in October was criticized for its technical hiccups, the latest update focuses on stability and bugfixes. The game now includes a new map, a kill/death ratio, and "improved control schemes, AI, UI, and registering/logging processes for smoother online gameplay."

Emotional Robots also notes that cross-platform performance has been boosted by roughly 40 percent, which should be good news for anyone experiencing difficulties with earlier versions.

Warm Gun is on sale for $1.99 until the end of February.

Global Game Jam 2012: A Growing Collection

February 2, 2012 3:00 AM | John Polson

Ouroboros.preview.png

The Global Game Jam (GGJ) is billed as the world's largest game jam event, occurring annually in late January. The games created for GGJ are traditionally centered around a theme. This year 's was the ouroboros, representing an eternal life cycle. In 2011, teams in 44 countries created over 1500 games in one weekend. At my last count, GGJ 2012 developers have uploaded 2218 games -- quite the increase!

Here are but a few of those games created:

Omelette Boris (WIN/MAC) - Kumobius' puzzle platformer about the cycle of life won Best Game & the Jammer's Choice awards for the Melbourne, AU Jam.

MIRRORMOON (WIN/MAC) - Bloody Monkey worked on this adventure-puzzle-exploration game, set on a mysterious red planet.

ARoboros (Win 7 Phone) - Sugar Pill Studios created an augmented reality game in which you flip snake markers onto passing mice to catch them.

Universe Within (iOS) - Kotaku spotted this dazzling pixelated game, where you "steer through obstacles as it advances from the the galaxy through the stratosphere and into a human being's cells."

SBPSG (WIN) - Desktop Dungeons devs QCF Design created an RTS based around gathering, directing and recycling armies of particles to attack and destroy the opposing player's base beacon.

Lovers in Dangerous Spacetime (WIN, GGJ Link) - Matt Hammill worked with a team to create this vibrant 2-player co-op mini platformer within a pink Death Star which is under attack. Players need to run back and forth between ship control rooms to fight off hordes of space baddies.

Disillusion (WIN) - True Valhalla created this minimalistic, abstract platform game with a focus on exploration.

Towelfight of the Gods (WIN) - Stoz Studios has the player warped from a shower into an arena of the gods, fighting off opponents with deadly bananas.

Feel free to leave any cool GGJ games you find in the comments below!

IGN's The Next Game Boss is Back?!

February 1, 2012 3:00 PM | John Polson

IGN is at it again with its indie dev reality series, The Next Game Boss. Six dev teams will spend one week attempting to survive judged competitions surrounding different aspects of game development. Whereas last year's Game Boss pitted existing Indie Open House teams against one another, this season's contestants are essentially auditioning for a spot in the next Open House, along with earning $10,000 in prizes (which are mainly dev tools).

Lazy 8 Studios, developer of Cogs, is one familiar face in the bunch. As much as I love Lazy 8, I don't think they should be bunched with "up-and-coming devs," being a multi-award winning studio with a multi-platform game. Their game was even in Humble Bundle, helping raise awareness of the team and Cogs substantially.

XBLIG indie devs Team2Bit also grace the screen with their scruffy presence, branding themselves as Team Fist Puncher as a nod to their upcoming game. Michael "Bean" Molinari has been doing some neat art games, and his talent shows in his creative concept in the premiere episode. The other teams I believe are new-comers.

The series is bound to rub some the wrong way, but I think there are some valuable lessons to be learned. Rapid conceptualizing is hard, but it is an invaluable skill when you want to figure out whether your idea is worth fleshing out as a game. Bringing your best pitch forward is an equally important lesson, as often developers only have one chance to pitch a great concept, be it in an email, in a trailer, or in front of industry professionals.

My favorite moment of this episode was meeting Dogsworth McFreedom, though it doesn't quite reach the level of craziness that I saw from Runt or Cryptic Sea in last year's Open House (Raptor Hitler, anyone?). Surely this kind of indie filming isn't going to win any Sundance awards nor end up on HBO. Some may even see it as a step back for the indie scene as a whole or at least for those who want meaningful press on IGN's website. However, The Next Game Boss season 2 feels like a slightly better attempt at capturing game development and is good for a (possibly uncomfortable) laugh.

New Android-Compatible Humble Bundle Out Now

February 1, 2012 3:00 AM | John Polson

Anomaly: Warzone Earth, Osmos, and EDGE are the stars of Humble Bundle's first cross-platform collection that includes codes for Android devices. Consumers can pay any amount they desire, while divvying up their payment to the devs, the site, and the Child's Play and Electronic Frontier Foundation charities.

For those who pay more than the average price, they also get World of Goo. Speaking of averages, the current is already pretty high, sitting at $5.81 as of this writing. If the Android phone image on the site is anything to go by, at least three more games will make their debut before the 14-day bundle ends.

After the jump is a video for those who have purchased the latest Humble Bundle but need some assistance on how to get the games on their Android devices.

GDC 2012 to host special Indie Game: The Movie screening, panel

January 30, 2012 9:28 PM | John Polson

igtm.jpgToday, organizers of the 2012 Game Developers Conference announced that the award-winning Indie Game: The Movie will receive its own special screening at this year's San Francisco show.

In fact, not only will attendees get to check out the film -- which took home a Best Editing award at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival -- they will also get the chance to sit in on a special panel with the film's featured subjects and creators following the screening.

When the event begins, attendees will be able to watch the full film, which details the chronicles of indie developers and IGF nominees/winners Edmund McMillen and Tommy Refenes (Super Meat Boy), Phil Fish (Fez), and Jonathan Blow (Braid), exploring their dramatic journeys as they created and released their games to the world.

The subsequent panel, moderated by former IGF host, Revision 3's Anthony Carboni, will feature all four of the film's featured developers, as well as directors Lisanne Pajot and James Swirsky, all of whom will offer new insight and personal stories from throughout the film's creation.

The event will take place Monday, March 5th at 6PM PT, and is free to all GDC pass holders on a first come, first served basis.

To register for a pass, please check out the show's official website -- early registration ends Thursday, February 2, and attendees can order soon to save up to 35 percent on full price passes.

For even more information on Game Developers Conference 2012, be sure to keep an eye on the official GDC news blog, which continues to showcase the show's newest announcements and additions.

To make sure you don't miss any of these announcements, please subscribe to updates from the GDC news page via Twitter, Facebook, or RSS. GDC 2012 will take place March 5 through March 9 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, and is owned and operated by Gamasutra parent company UBM TechWeb.

[This post originally appeared on Gamasutra.]

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