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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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Cornfox & Brothers Announce New iOS Adventure Title Oceanhorn

November 9, 2011 5:42 PM | Cassandra Khaw


Cornfox & Brothers, one of several developers that worked on Death Rally, has revealed a new iOS project that's sure to get a lot of attention as its release approaches next year: Oceanhorn: Monster of Uncharted Seas, an adventure title inspired by Nintendo's Legend of Zelda games, particularly Wind Waker:

"The game puts you in the boots of a nameless hero who, in order to save his sister, must slay this monster for good. In this game, the world is open for exploration by foot or by boat, but beware - the sea monster [Oceanhorn] can attack at any time, and ill-prepared travelers will meet their early demise.

Equip your boat with new sails, hulls or even with forgotten technology like Smog Engine to outwit Oceanhorn in battle. Roam the lands and explore ancient ruins to find the legendary Coral Harpoon. Learn the history of the Uncharted Seas. What happened to the civilization whose cities now lay in ruins?"

While the impressive first image above is curiously named "bullshot.png", the studio says everything you see there is made up of in-game assets. The in-game engine still needs some of the effects shown there, and Cornfox says the final game will look different, but predicts that the end result might actually look better!

So far, the only other information we know is that the game is "definitely not freemium" and is built with a 3D-tile world editor that was developed together with the studio's officemates at Mountain Sheep. Cornfox & Brothers also promises that its efficient level tools will allow it to pack the game with content.

[This article was originally posted on sister site GameSetWatch]

The Notgame Inspiration behind Flight of the Fireflies (Woolly Robot)

November 9, 2011 3:33 PM | John Polson

Woolly Robot's Flight of the Fireflies grabbed my attention extra hard because of the moment of zen caused from the game's website (make sure you hold the down arrow and not use your mouse). With such an impressive page design, I was eager to explore the atmospheric, music generating iPad game behind it.

In Flight of the Fireflies, players guide a swarm of musically infused fireflies with one finger. Each firefly moves and makes sounds independently but also moves with the swarm, creating unique music every time. Flight of the Fireflies will be released in the beginning of December. Initially it will be iPad only, but the developer might release it for PC, Mac and iPhone later.

I asked Woolly's Jonathan Hise Kaldma if he'd ever experienced thatgamecompany's titles, since the comparison immediately came to mind. "I personally don't worry too much about comparisons. Anything we make always exists in a cultural context. I haven't actually played Flower, but even though they might share some characteristics, when it comes down to it, I think they'll be different experiences."

Trailer: GrandMaster (Beast Mode)

November 9, 2011 3:00 AM | Tim W.

Strange... this is how I imagined the life of many starving indie game developers would be like on a day-to-day basis. Grandmaster is an attempt to simulate the mysterious art of bumming in the form of a game, where players learn to scavenge for the best leftover food from the trashcan, beg for money, and survive in harshest of environments known to mankind: the streets.

If you think bears have it tough, wait till you see these hobos in action. Useless trash has to be disposed of by throwing them to the sides of the screen, and digestible food are to be dragged down to the bottom so that you may fill your hungry tummy with barely-edible substances. If you dig deep enough, you might even find special items like pieces of clothing at the bottom of the trashcan.

For all we know, Beast Mode might be drawing inspiration for the game from their own experiences. You can follow the development of Grandmaster via their Facebook page.

Play As A Jerk Seagull In This iOS Game

November 8, 2011 3:00 AM | Tim W.

Charles C. Gull isn't an angry bird; he's just a jerk. Other points worth noting: he wears a hat, and he loves to cause trouble by "knocking defenseless birds out of the sky, and spilling garbage cans on the street." See what I mean? Total jerk town.

Anyway, he has a new iOS game with charming, minimalist 8-bit style graphics by pixelartist Caleb Hystad (Herbert's Day Out, those cute Doom sprites), and a lovely painted background by Laura Bifano (Menagerie series of blockish animal paintings).

The rules in Charles C. Gull are simple: as you scroll through the 2D stage, touch to fly, hold to glide, and release to boost. Smacking small birds are one point, while hitting garbage cans are two. The level scrolls faster after every 10 points.

Ravens and bears can hurt you, but you can regain a life by stealing a feather from a passing seagull. It's a pretty addictive game -- I just wish there was more to it than the single stage. You can grab Charles C. Gull from the App Store for free right now.

[Originally posted on sister site GameSetWatch.]

Round-Up: Gamasutra Network Jobs, Week Of November 4

November 4, 2011 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 Infinity Ward, Gree, Tripwire Interactive, 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 alternative gaming news, independent games, and more.

Some of the notable jobs posted this week include:

Infinity Ward / Activision: Senior Environment Artist:
"Infinity Ward, Inc. is an award winning developer located in Los Angeles, California.Since its inception, the studio has consistently produced blockbuster hits and critically-acclaimed titles including Call of Duty, Call of Duty 2, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 and most recently Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3."

Tripwire Interactive LLC: Senior Programmer:
"Tripwire Interactive is looking for highly talented and dedicated individuals to join the Tripwire Interactive family. Developer of the critically acclaimed Red Orchestra series and the hit game Killing Floor, Tripwire has a history of developing some of the most popular multiplayer games in the world. Poised to surpass this success for their next project Tripwire Interactive is one of the rising new stars of the games industry."

Iphone Game Pick: Oh! Edo Town (Kairosoft)

November 4, 2011 11:02 AM | Cassandra Khaw


Curse you, Kairosoft. I was planning on doing something this weekend. I was going to go to a movie, play a few rounds of Arkham Horror with my friends, buy groceries. I was going to have a life outside of video games, for once.

But, now? That's not going to happen. I'm going to spend an unreasonable amount of time poking at Oh! Edo Towns instead. The most recent addition to Kairosoft's stable of absurdly addictive games, Oh! Edo Towns will have you striving to create the perfect samurai town. All the staples of a Kairosoft game are present in this one. There are a variety of things to construct, tiny digital people to please and goals to fulfill. Like its predecessors, it's not exactly ground-breaking but it's certainly an awesome way to kill some time in a long queue.

Check it out here.

Aquaria For iPad Available Now From Semi Secret Software

November 3, 2011 8:00 PM | John Polson

IGF 2007 Samus McNally Grand Prize winner Aquaria hits iPads via iTunes today. Aquaria is the brainchild of Alec Holowka and Derek Yu and has been ported for touch tablet fans by Andrew Church.

Players partake in a 2D underwater action-adventure with huge areas to explore, enemies to overcome, pieces of the environment to move, and 8 different playable forms with unique abilities to handle it all. Players also combine found items to sustain themselves using a cooking system. Aquaria for iPad doesn't force any painful virtual controls; players can drag their finger anywhere on the screen to move the character or tap quickly to attack.

Aquaria is also available for Windows and Mac users or purchasable on Steam. For those wanting to gut the fish, so to speak, the source code for Aquaria is also available. Holowka tells IndieGames that the developers are tinkering with an Android port, but no decisions have been made.

Aquaria for iPad is currently priced at $4.99 on the iTunes store.

[Semi Secret Software]

Frozen Synapse Coming To iPad With Cross-Platform Play

November 3, 2011 3:00 AM | Tim W.

UK-based indie studio Mode 7 Games announced that Frozen Synapse, its much-praised turn-based tactical PC title, will release for iPad -- the studio says it's worked on the project for a while now, and expects to release it in the first half of 2012.

The developer says Frozen Synapse's iOS port will "definitely" have cross-platform play with the PC edition, so folks on both platforms will be able to command their teams of virtual soldiers against each other in Laser Squad Nemesis-style combat.

Mode 7's Paul Taylor reassures current fans, "I don't want people to worry that we're going to abandon FS on its current platforms - we're actually working right now to hire another team member so we can give it more attention and update it more efficiently."

The studio says it still has a "a lot of work to do on the interface as well as some additional tweaks" at the moment, but it will be ready for a beta after that. You can see photos of people checking out the iOS game at a recent meet here.

[Originally posted on sister site GameSetWatch.]

Best of GameSetWatch: From NMA's GTAV Trailer To Tokyo Blip Fest Highlights

November 2, 2011 11:00 PM | Eric Caoili

[Every week GameSetWatch editor-in-chief Eric Caoili rounds up the latest news/media for obscure and offbeat games from Gamasutra's sister site and alternative video game blog.]

Over at our alt video game blog GameSetWatch, we shared a number of fun stories during the past week, including Next Media Animation's 'Grand Theft Auto 5' trailer, highlights from Tokyo Blip Fest, the cancelled New Ghostbusters II NES game, and more.

GameSetWatch's highlights from the last week:

Next Media Animation Premieres "Grand Theft Auto 5" Trailer - Taiwanese news outlet Next Media Animation has gotten another exclusive scoop that promises to shock the gaming world. This time, NMA offers an early look at Rockstar's open-world crime drama Grand Theft Auto V, which apparently represents a bold new direction for the series.

Anamanaguchi, USK, And More Laying It Down At Tokyo Blip Fest - Want to see what you missed at Tokyo Blip Fest last weekend? You need to watch this joint performance between American chiptune superstar band Anamanaguchi (from the Scott Pilgrim vs The World video game soundtrack) and Fukuoka legend USK tearing the roof off Koenji High.

New iPad App Allows For Coding, Prototyping Directly On The Tablet

October 31, 2011 12:00 AM | Tim W.

For all the praise for iOS among many game developers, one criticism has centered on the inability to write and execute code on the device itself, as can be done on a PC. A new app called Codify (iTunes link) seeks to change that to some extent, letting iPad users code and prototype in a Lua-based environment directly on the iPad.

As shown in the introductory video, apps created in Codify can make use of built-in iOS functions like the touch screen and tilt sensor, as well as built-in sprite graphics and various sound effects. Codify's touch-centric interface offers context-specific shortcuts such as an in-line color selector, image selection menus and auto-completion for commonly typed functions. A built-in documentation viewer and navigation controls also help programmers get around complex code.

While there's currently no way to export a project made in Codify, Australian developer Two Lives Left promises such a feature is being planned for a pending update, as well as support for importing external graphics and more. As it stands, the $7.99 app seems to provide a nice environment for quick prototyping and testing of basic iPad game ideas when you're away from a workstation with an iOS SDK.

[Originally posted on sister site Gamasutra.]
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