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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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Archive For January, 2013

Lume sequel is a gorgeous world of motorized paper and cardboard

January 30, 2013 3:00 PM | John Polson

State of Play Games has unfolded a few teases of the sequel to its paper and cardboard adventure, Lume. Entitled Lumino City, this puzzle adventure will be many times the size of the original and be the first time they use motors to bring the handmade game to life.

The motors were essential to get elements of the scene moving as they wanted, developer Luke Whittaker shared with me. "For example, there's a windmill in the city, which we could have filmed with stop motion but we wanted a very natural, realistic and smooth rotation. Using a motor and then filming it, with the associated slight blur and perfect rotation creates that subtlety we were after."

Escape Goat 2 Coming to PC This Year

January 30, 2013 12:00 PM | Danny Cowan

130129_escapegoat2.jpg

MagicalTimeBean's inventive puzzle-platformer and Xbox Live Indie Games standout Escape Goat will get a PC-exclusive sequel this year, series creator Ian Stocker revealed in this eye-opening interview at IndieStatik.

While plot details are undecided at the moment, Escape Goat 2 will feature the same sort of single-screen challenges as its predecessor, and levels will once again be accessed via an interconnected hub. Stocker explains that the sequel will feature "new gadgets and perhaps new creatures," and the ever-helpful mouse character may wear different hats that grant new magical powers.

Stocker also notes that Escape Goat 2 will be ported to other platforms after its Windows debut, though an Xbox Live Indie Games version may or may not be in the cards. Escape Goat is a personal favorite of mine -- I can't wait to see how the sequel turns out!

Kickstarter Projects: The Asylum (Senscape)

January 30, 2013 9:00 AM | Konstantinos Dimopoulos / Gnome

Having already secured its place in the hallowed halls of Steam, horror adventure Asylum by Agustin Cordes and Senscape is trying to move on to even bigger and better things. Apparently it's not content with being the most ambitious horror point-and-click adventure ever attempted; oh no, it really wants to make sure it will be as good and expansive as humanly possible and that's why Senscape have launched the pretty impressive Asylum Kickstarter in order to fully and properly fund the game.

The team, mind you, have been working on this for years. They have already released an interactive Asylum teaser (well, a short demo actually), have finished the Dagon engine that will be open and free for all game devs, and, from what I've seen, are doing an absolutely stellar work in creating one of the biggest, spookiest and most detailed buildings to ever appear in a game.

Asylum will be available both on Steam and as a DRM-free download and will run happily on your Windows, Mac or Linux machine. You can support its creation by pledging your hard earned virtual cash and reserving all sorts of goodies; $15 will get you the complete digital version of the game, whereas $75 a deluxe edition boxed copy.

Road to the IGF: Cardboard Computer's Kentucky Route Zero

January 30, 2013 6:00 AM | Staff

kentucky route zero small.pngNot to blow my own trumpet, but I had predicted that Cardboard Computer's Jake Elliott was destined for great things way back in 2010, when he released wonderful games like Hummingbird Mind and A House in California.

And indeed, when a trailer for Kentucky Route Zero was released at the start of 2011, it was obvious that it was going to be yet another very special from the designer. A collaboration with developer Tamas Kemenczy, Kentucky Route Zero has now picked up four nominations at this year's IGF awards, including the Seumas McNally Grand Prize.

The adventure game follows a trucker called Conway who is looking to make a delivery, but ends up on a story-driven wild goose chase filled with gorgeous visuals.

As part of Gamasutra's Road to the IGF series, Elliott discusses the inspiration for Kentucky Route Zero, and why he's glad that the game's Kickstarter came before the big crowd-funding boom.

Browser Game Pick: Super Puzzle Platformer Plus (Andrew Morrish)

January 30, 2013 3:00 AM | John Polson

super puzzle platformer plus.jpgSuper Puzzle Platformer Deluxe is not quite here yet, but its predecessor Super Puzzle Platformer Plus is! The goal is still to survive while getting points from destroying combos of same-colored bricks while picking up coins to level up. I can't survive too long in here, but Andrew Morrish told me this version has three characters, three obstacles, new pickups and powerups, more ways to die, and also awesome new music. I noticed I could also hold the jump button to float down more slowly, great for planning my descent.

Speaking of descents, SPP Deluxe isn't the only game Morrish is working on. He's also created some sprites for a hellish MSFKSWG (multiplayer-sci-fi-kinky-satan-worshiping-game). I'm down for it.

[Adult Swim Games]

Disasterpeace's game turned tool, January, revisited

January 30, 2013 12:00 AM | Staff

Thumbnail image for January.JPG[Guest columnist Rekcahdam/Roger Hicks continues covering the intersection of music and indie games.]

As the month of January comes to a close I thought it'd only be fitting to revisit Rich Vreeland's (aka Disasterpeace's) recently refined "generative music tool" with the same name. Some readers may remember the post about it back in October, but since then Vreeland has changed quite a bit to focus more on making it more like a tool and less like a game. In fact so much has changed that I believe it warrants revisiting.

He's ditched the parallaxing background and atmosphere it once had and added advanced, sequencer-like features. For those who haven't already heard of the original. January opens with you controlling a lone boy in a winter landscape who apparently likes to eat snow flakes, and lots of them! Every snow flake that your tongue touches triggers a musical note or chord in the form of a soft echoing synth. The snow fall starts slowly but gradually picks up in speed, seemingly causing notes and chords to trigger more rhythmically all layered over a wind ambiance track.

XBLIG Pick: Pester (Flump Studios)

January 29, 2013 9:00 PM | Danny Cowan

Xbox Live Indie Games is a haven for bullet hell shoot-'em-ups, and the service's shmup catalog grows larger still with this week's release of Pester, a follow-up to Flump Studios' Cave-inspired XBLIG shooter Super Killer Hornet.

Along with "a poop load more bullets," Pester boasts "a crap ton of game modes" -- don't let the feces talk deter you from trying this one, though, as Pester features a surprisingly varied collection of gameplay modes, including a Raiden IV-esque "duo" mode in which one player controls two ships at once.

Pester is priced at 80 Microsoft points ($1).

Bombball aims to unlock OUYA eSport potential

January 29, 2013 6:00 PM | John Polson

BombballSS1.pngAurora/Auralux developer E McNeill has created a browser-based prototype to coincide with his OUYA create competition entry, Bombball, an eSport game that he says can take advantage of the console's distinguishing features.

The developer had only 10 days to create the prototype for OUYA, but his and 165 entries completed the challenge.

McNeill describes the game as "an abstract, fast-paced eSport" that was directly inspired by the SPORTSFRIENDS-bound Hokra. "I'm aiming for the same sort of indie simplicity and local multiplayer, local spectator magic. I think that's the area where the OUYA can actually offer some unique value in competition with traditional consoles, PCs, and mobile devices," says McNeill.

iOS Game Pick: Meteor Storm Escape (Happy Little Aliens)

January 29, 2013 3:00 PM | Danny Cowan

130128_meteorescape.png

Husband and wife team Happy Little Aliens (Sean Butler and Mary Jackson) has launched Meteor Storm Escape, a vibrantly colorful stunt-based racer for iOS devices. A free browser-based trial version is also available (requires Unity plugin).

Meteor Storm Escape challenges players to traverse an endless obstacle course and dodge falling meteors while traveling at speeds of up to 500 kilometers per hour. The game's stunt mechanics add a satisfying dose of risk/reward -- land a stunt successfully and you'll earn extra boost power, but be careful not to veer into meteors while you're airborne, as your shields deplete rather quickly.

Meteor Storm Escape is available as a free download, and additional tracks and vehicles can be unlocked via in-app purchases.

Browser Game Pick: Crush (Issam Khalil and Cat Musgrove)

January 29, 2013 12:00 PM | Danny Cowan

Developers Cat Musgrove and Issam Khalil have teamed up to produce Crush, a free Unity-based browser game that simulates the anxiety and panic one experiences when attempting to speak with one's crush.

Developed as part of the recently concluded Global Game Jam, Crush is a short experience in which players must wade through a crowd and approach a spotlighted blue cube, though anxiety manifests itself throughout and sabotages your intentions. Despite the unusual premise and gameplay, Musgrove assures that the game is possible to finish.

"Crush is a simple prototype that explores the idea of anxiety," Musgrove explains. "We were trying to recreate some of what I've been feeling. Perhaps in breaking down the pieces that make up a panic attack, simplifying them and creating a system, I can learn something about what is happening to me."

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