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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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Archive For March, 2009

Freeware Game Pick: Flickerstrings (Arvi Teikari)

March 31, 2009 9:10 PM | Tim W.

Flickerstrings is a new experimental work created by the developer of FIG and Jump on Mushrooms: The Game. In it, players are required to draw an object to use as a playable character, starting from the brown box and ending when the maximum line length is reached. Once drawn, the shape can be moved around using the cursor keys. This shape turns into an immovable platform when the player attempts to draw another shape from the brown box.

The length of each string is limited, but you can cancel any mistakes by right clicking before the shape is drawn. You can also press the space key to restart a level at any time.

There are a total of twelve stages included in this version.

Review: And Yet It Moves (Broken Rules)

March 31, 2009 6:05 PM | Michael Rose

Other than sounding like the title of one of those godawful poems they forced us to analyze for English lessons back at school (or was that just me?), And Yet It Moves is a superbly entertaining, deeply frustrating platforming puzzler which made me simultaneously amazed at its brilliance, yet want to smash my keyboard into lots of itty bitty pieces. Unfortunately, anger management counselling didn't appear to come included as standard.

Browser Game Pick: Neptune (GUMP)

March 31, 2009 5:19 PM | Tim W.

A slight departure from GUMP's usual House series (Boat House, Rental House and Guest House), the story of Neptune is about a child who happens to come across a strange structure while taking a walk in the woods. Without thinking twice, the young'un decides to enter this building and explore the surroundings within, not realizing that it will be easy to enter but unnecessary complicated to exit from this futuristic-looking complex. (walkthrough)

Preview: AaaaaAAaaaAAAaaAAAAaAAAAA!!! (Dejobaan Games)

March 31, 2009 9:24 AM | Michael Rose

An Alpha Test Video has been released for the upcoming base-jumping freefaller by Dejobaan Games.

AaaaaAAaaaAAAaaAAAAaAAAAA!!! -- A Reckless Disregard for Gravity is nearly ready for distribution as a 'publicly-playable alpha', so we may be getting a go of it in a few weeks time. Will it be any good? We shall see, shall we not!

Freeware Game Pick: Sad Moon Mission (JW)

March 31, 2009 6:37 AM | Tim W.

Sad Moon Mission tells the tale of an astronaut who was left behind by an expedition team headed into space. This is where you intervene by helping him jump from platform to platform, praying that he could catch up with the ship that is currently one crewman short.

You will need to return to the ground level occasionally to trade in the coins you've collected for new abilities. The game consists of only one playable area, which can be easily beaten in about fifteen minutes or so. (direct download link)

Alien Hominid Half Price This Week + The Dishwasher Release

March 31, 2009 12:22 AM | Michael Rose

Two slathers of news concerning the Xbox Live Arcade: First off, The Behemoth's Alien Hominid is half price (for Gold members, sigh) for the next week, putting it at 400 MS Points - a rather nice price for the classic side-scrolling multiplayer shooter.

Secondly, the much-awaited The Dishwasher: Dead Samurai by Ska Studios is to be released this Wednesday for 800 MS Points. The press release describes it as "An undead samurai dishwasher in a dystopian universe on a quest for revenge against the evil cyborg army". Apparently it will also make use of the guitar peripheral in certain game modes:

"New game modes with guitar peripheral: The Dishwasher has arcade co-op, drop-in solo campaign co-op, and drop-in solo phantom guitar co-op using the guitar peripheral. Phantom guitar players can unload electric death by playing wicked solos, perform basic movement, and use the guitar's motion control to rip through enemies with a razor-sharp headstock."

I'll be very interested to see how that turns out. Expect a review later in the week.

GamerBytes Analysis: XNA Community Games Sales Data Revealed

March 31, 2009 12:03 AM | Tim W.

[Compiling many of the statistics from XNA Community Games' first data dump, GamerBytes editor Ryan Langley takes an in-depth look at what the divulged sales numbers mean for the future of the service.]

Since the start of the XNA Community Games on the Xbox Marketplace it's been well known that the developers had no way to look at any data about their titles. As of Saturday however, download history is now available to game submitters, complete with specific details on how many trial games have been download, the amount of sales they make on a daily basis, and which regions they were bought.

Many developers have openly discussed their sales through the XNA Creators forums, or on their own websites. Several others have been in contact with us and are allowing us to display their own totals. I thank every developer who was willing to speak with us and be a part of these statistics.

Below is a chart of sales for 24 different games - the amount of trial versions downloaded, and the amount of games bought. Some of the data is incomplete, but we've done our best to be as accurate as possible.

The earnings are based on the 70 / 30 scale suggested by Microsoft for how much developers will earn through XNA Community Games, but this might change in the future, with Microsoft taking an extra 10-30% depending on the amount of promotion they give a game. (However, right now, the XNA admins says: "For the time being, we've decided to maintain the 70/30 split across the board whether your game was featured or not"):

Caster Coming to iPhone in April

March 30, 2009 11:49 PM | Michael Rose

Now this looks pretty nice! Mike Smith's Caster is headed to iPhone and it looks like it's shaping up to be one of the nicest looking games on the platform.

The iPhone version is a port of the original with new touch screen controls. Mike explained to us:

"With the new control scheme we developed, the iPhone version is VERY true to the original. Some people actually even prefer the iPhone control scheme over the 360 controller if you can believe it!"

A release is penned in for sometime in April. As for the second installment of the series (which will be available for free to all those who purchased the first part), Mike tells us that a little work has been done, however he'll be properly diving back into the developing once the iPhone version is released.

You can grab a copy of the original from the official Caster site now for the low price of $4.99.

Freeware Game Pick: Balance of Power: 21st Century (Chris Crawford)

March 30, 2009 1:18 PM | Michael Rose


Balance of Power: 21st Century places you in charge of the US straight after the 9/11 bombings and asks you to make numerous decisions about the welfare of the world. It's a storybook style game where all goings-on happen in text form. Every decision you make has a consequence and it's up to you to decide how to play - either be an evil dictator and scare every other leader into submission, or be kind and generous and win their approval.

It's a simple setup but there's plenty to try out, ranging from preventing nations from firing nuclear missiles to setting off some of your own. A balance needs to be struck between using force to keep the more hostile nations at bay, while staying friendly with those who may be able to offer help.

The game is a pretty mixed bag which will seem cool to some and rather boring to others. It definitely has potential and maybe if it were taken a little further (visuals, charisma etc) Balance of Power could be really quite nice. Give it a play and see what you make of it.

Source: IndieBird

Browser Game Pick: Space Trophy (Flash Bus Studio)

March 28, 2009 8:45 PM | Michael Rose


Space Trophy is a take on the classic Helicopter game. Holding down the left mouse button makes your ship go up, release and you go down.

A space theme has been integrated to give the old idea a revival. Players must collect fuel barrels along the way to keep the ship going while dodging meteors and saving little spacemen. There are also stars to collect which can be used to upgrade your ship.

There's a story mode and the classic survival mode to play. There's nothing innovative here and the graphics aren't exactly stunning, but it's sure-fire fun and an interesting take on the original game. Latest version is on Kongregate.

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