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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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Mobile Game Pick: Off The Leash

January 30, 2012 7:00 PM | Lewie Procter

Set in a dystopian future where Dogs have been "banned", Off The Leash is a game where you steer a pack of runaway dogs by tilting your iOS device left and right, dodging obstacles and grabbing collectables on your way. Reminiscent of Nathan Fouts' Shoot1up, you can recruit more dogs for your pack by guiding your dogs toward them. The more dogs in your pack, the easier it is to grab coins and such, but the more likely you are to steer one of your dogs straight into a bush.

It's due out on Thursday for small iThings, and it's going to be free. There's various different in app purchase based upgrades and cosmetic customisations you can buy for real money if you like, although it doesn't feel to me like spending money is required to enjoy the game at all, and it looks like you could unlock everything without spending a penny, if you're so inclined.

The graphics are kinda rad, and the character designs have got oodles of charm. It's not going to change the world, but it's definitely better than staring into empty space when you're waiting for a bus.

Screenshots of The Other Brothers

January 29, 2012 4:00 PM | Cassandra Khaw

otherbrothers1.jpg Are you sick and tired of Mario and his cadre of friends? Do you think that it is high time for another set of grime-encrusted siblings to take center stage in the hearts of the public? Great. Meet The Other Brothers. As far as we can tell so far, The Other Brothers is going to be a 'pixelated family fun adventure of running, jumping, collecting, racing against the clock' .. with a twist. We're not really sure what that twist is just yet but we'll let you know. For now, however, I'm happy with the fact that it looks like we'll be seeing zombies, old-school mobsters with violin cases and people who see boxes as legitimate components of their wardrobe.

Currently, the official website's somewhat bereft of information but I would recommend bookmarking it anyway because it appears as though 'freakishly fast development' is the name of the game with this three-man team. Until we find out more, enjoy the screenshots we have so far.

Trailer: Tobe & Friends Hookshot Escape (Secret Base)

January 29, 2012 12:00 PM | John Polson

Secret Base is bringing Tobe and his friends to the iOS early this year in an updated version of Hookshot Escape. This retro endless platformer is a "return to arcade high score madness and a love letter to our childhood," says Secret Base.

Tobe & Friends Hookshot Escape boasts different play styles for each character: hookshot, hammer, dragon punch and feather cape. The game also contains 4 different themes, where each character has its own pixelated world, along with its own chip tune. Essentially, iOS users get 4x the content of last year's Hookshot Escape release (in which Tobe was sadly without friends).

Get a job: Rockstar, LucasArts, others hiring now on the Gamasutra jobs board

January 27, 2012 11:00 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 Rockstar, LucasArts, Blizzard Entertainment, 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:

Magic Pixel Games Generalist Programmer: Tools Focus:
"Magic Pixel Games was founded in 2010 by the core members that developed the award-winning Steven Spielberg's Boom Blox. Much of our team has worked together for almost a decade, and we've now struck out on our own to continue our tradition of creating extraordinary games. Our first product was launched in 2011: Carnival Island, developed with Sony Santa Monica Studio.

We're now building a team as we ramp up for our second project, which again, strives to break new ground - but is significantly different from our first in all ways - tone, target audience and style...we're excited!"

Blizzard Entertainment: Professions Designer:
"Best known for blockbuster hits including World of Warcraft and the Warcraft, StarCraft, and Diablo series, Blizzard Entertainment, Inc., is a premier developer and publisher of entertainment software renowned for creating some of the industry's most critically acclaimed games. Blizzard's track record includes thirteen #1-selling games and multiple Game of the Year awards. The company's online-gaming service,, is one of the largest in the world, with millions of active players."

Trailer: Pugs Luv Beats (Lucky Frame)

January 27, 2012 10:04 AM | Cassandra Khaw

Personally, I'm more of a cat person but there's something oddly irresistible about Lucky Frame's kennel of musically-inclined space-faring pugs. More of a music toy than a game, Pugs Luv Beats is one of those titles that will either leave you scratching your head or cooing in adoration. It's one or the other. Take your pick.

The premise here is simple. You're in charge of assisting the interstellar canines in their quest to colonize new planets (they sort of accidentally blew up theirs). To do so, you're going to have to help them harvest little radish-like Beats. This, of course, is also where all the magic happens. Each step that your pugs take is another beat, each type of terrain a new sound. All the music in Pugs Luv Beats is procedurally generated and when composed right, things can sound pretty darn awesome.

Official site here.

Devolver Digital to attract indie talent with a moving bus

January 27, 2012 8:00 AM | John Polson

kaplan.jpgSerious Sam 3: BFE publisher Devolver Digital has announced a new program to attract indie game talent -- and this program involves a moving bus.

At the 2012 Game Developers Conference this March, Devolver Digital will launch the "Pitch Fork Parker" project, in which the company will drive a bus around the Moscone center in San Francisco, giving independent developers a chance to hop on board to pitch their game to the publisher's CFO (and the program's namesake), Fork Parker.

Selected indie developers will earn funding and a publishing deal from Devolver Digital. Ultimately, the publisher hopes to use these partnerships to develop a series of games based on an unannounced new IP, using a model similar to its recent Serious Sam Indie Series.

For this recent series, Devolver Digital partnered with Serious Sam: BFE developer CroTeam to fund a series of indie games based on the Serious Sam franchise. Indie developers featured in the series included Mommy's Best Games, Vlambeer, and Be-Rad Entertainment.

"Devolver has done quite well in it's first two years with the Serious Sam franchise -- including the Serious Sam Indie Series -- and we're ready to spread our wings a bit and work with more of this generation of super-indies," said Devolver Digital co-founder Mike Wilson. "It's a great time to be small!"

Devolver Digital's upcoming "Pitch Fork Parker" project will take place March 5 through March 9 at GDC 2012, an event owned and operated by Gamasutra parent company UBM TechWeb.

[This article originally appeared on Gamasutra and was written by Tom Curtis.]

Trailer: Shogun: Rise of the Renegade (Int13)

January 26, 2012 8:00 PM | Lewie Procter

Due out "soon" on iOS, Android & Bada, Shogun: Rise of the Renegade is a rather hot looking vertical scrolling shmup, much in the vein of the various Cave shooters for iOS. As you can see from this trailer, it's got a fair few bullets in it.

Developer Int13 have previously specialised in augmented reality games, but are kicking it old school with this arcade game. Shogun supports global cross platform leaderboards, and the iOS version is iCade compatible. No price yet, but there shouldn't be long to find out now: It's due out before the end of the month.

Originally spotted on toucharcade.

The GameGadget Wants To Be The Ipod for Games

January 26, 2012 6:19 PM | Cassandra Khaw

With the almost excessive amount of mobile devices already at our disposal, is there room for one more? Blaze Interactive certainly thinks so. The UK-based company first announced their retro gaming device GameGadget sometime back in November last year and according to creator Jason Cooper, the GameGadget will 'create a market for gamers to play the games they want to play'.

To be honest, the whole endeavor sounds a tad too ambitious to me. It's not like we don't already have the kitchen sink. Remakes, demakes, retro-flavored games, ROMs, revitalized franchises - you name it, we've pretty much got it. However, the GameGadget does have one important thing working for it: the fact that it's also a Linux-based open source development platform. On top of that, it looks like the GameGadget will come with a ton of resources, be capable of a cross compiling environment and will feature freely programmable hardware.

Will it work out? I don't know. We will, however, soon see. Barring any unfortunate circumstances, the GameGadget will apparently be launching on 30th March 2012 and will be priced at $99.99. For now, enjoy the website and this video we have of the device.

Bit of Alright Line Up Revealed

January 26, 2012 8:00 AM | John Polson

bit of alright.jpgNow sponsored by Sheridans, IndieCity, and Introversion, the new London-based game design conference Bit of Alright has announced its full line up.

Covering more than just video games, the day will include elements of board, card and live games too, with presenters including Proteus developer and IGF nominee Ed Key, IndieVisibility Awards mastermind Dan Marshall, and games writer Simon Parkin.

"I really like the idea that people can present whatever and however they like at Bit of Alright," said speaker Ricky Haggett. "As one of the organizers of London Indies, I know these people are an extraordinarily interesting crowd and will come up with some amazing things."

A Bit of Alright will be taking place in and around the Grand Hall of Battersea Arts Centre, SW11 5TN, on February 3 from 10:00-17:00. Tickets are available for purchase online for £35.00. The full line up for the event is found after the jump.

The man behind Minecraft's mobile and Xbox Live Arcade versions

January 26, 2012 6:00 AM | John Polson

kaplan.jpgDaniel Kaplan was recruited by Mojang to work on business development. An indie developer who had gotten suckered into being a CEO of his previous company "because none of the other guys were interested," he learned how to do business and PR before moving to Mojang.

Now, he's in charge of development of the mobile (iOS and Android) and Xbox Live Arcade versions of Minecraft, which stand distinct from the continuously-updated PC version. Kaplan recently revealed that the Android edition has sold 700,000 copies.

"It's mostly project management, but I also do some of the design work," says Kaplan, who collaborates with programmer Aron Nieminen on the mobile versions.

"We co-designed the mobile platform, so we try to nail out what will fit best for the mobile platform and we do the design work together."

Things are different with the Xbox version, which is being developed by 4J Studios in Dundee, Scotland. Kaplan interfaces with the developer as well as Microsoft. "Everything goes through me, and I say yes or no, or 'We should do this instead.' So it's a lot about being available to the different developers," he says.

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