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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 February, 2013

The Banner Saga: Factions Now Available for Free via Steam

February 27, 2013 12:00 PM | Danny Cowan

The multiplayer component of Stoic Studio's successfully Kickstarted strategy-RPG The Banner Saga is now publicly available as a free-to-play title via Steam.

Incorporating elements from Norse culture in its fantasy-themed narrative, The Banner Saga: Factions is a turn-based strategy title in which you'll command a large army of characters in a series of competitive battles. The game features some impressive animation, as you can see in the trailer above, and community tournaments (the first of which begins today) will be held regularly.

"Some people have had questions about what 'Factions' is, and why we released it separate from the single player Saga," Stoic notes. "To summarize, we built combat for the single player game and decided to release it as multiplayer competitive game free and early as we continue to develop the single player game."

Stoic continues: "Unlike many 'free to play' games, there's no energy system, no pay to win, and matches are made between teams with even power, regardless of whether they spent money or not. In fact, we've pretty much designed a game that you never need to pay a cent for, truly and honestly. We've probably screwed ourselves. In the meantime, work continues heavily on the single player campaign."

Kickstarter Projects: Mage's Initiation (Himalaya Studios)

February 27, 2013 9:00 AM | Konstantinos Dimopoulos / Gnome

Himalaya Studios, the very same team that released those spectacular and happily freeware Sierra adventure game remakes as AGD Interactive and the very same people that created the Al Emmo point-and-clickable Western game, are now working on their most exciting project to date. On Mage's Initiation, a pixel-art RPG/adventure hybrid inspired by Quest for Glory that features all sorts of bells and whistles and looks lovely in its high(er) resolution glory, but also needs your help. Give it to it via Kickstarter and effectively pre-order the completed game for as low as $16.

Having already played through an early tech demo I can assure you Mage's Initiation is looking very impressive indeed, what with its whimsical setting, beautiful graphics, great writing and sleek interface. Oh, and even that early glimpse of RPG combat was much better than I could have possibly expected.

Freeware Game Pick: Castle of the Red Prince (Pacian)

February 27, 2013 6:00 AM | Konstantinos Dimopoulos / Gnome

castleoftheredprince.pngIt's been ages since Pacian's last game was gracefully released, but, finally, his latest piece of interactive fiction has been made available and we can all enjoy a fresh, lovely, short, freeware, well written and quite dark text adventure. Castle of the Red Prince, for this is what the thing is called, is a game focused on exploring atmospheric Amaranth; a land of darkness not wholly dissimilar to Ravenloft (only much better written) and a place ruled by the apparently evil and rather undead Red Prince. Kill the guy and you have both beaten the game and immensely enjoyed yourselves.

Castle of the Red Prince can be played in the comfort of your browser and, of course, downloaded for your offline pleasure.

Road to the IGF: Jeppe Carlsen and team's 140

February 27, 2013 3:00 AM | Staff

What happens when the lead gameplay designer at Playdead (Limbo) strikes out on his own with a side project? 140 is what takes up Jeppe Carlsen's free time. It's a rhythm-based minimalist platformer that he's developing with Playdead audio programmer Jakob Schmid and graphic artists Niels Fyrst Lausdahl and Andreas Arnild Peitersen.

The game earned its IGF nomination in the audio category, and in this interview, Gamasutra speaks to Carlsen and the team about marrying platforming, audio, and visual art into a cohesive whole.

Might and Delight's Pid Gets Free DLC Challenge Rooms

February 27, 2013 12:01 AM | Danny Cowan

Might and Delight has issued an update for the Windows and Mac versions of its gravity-shifting platformer Pid, adding 72 new challenge levels as free downloadable content.

The GRIN veterans at Might and Delight have continually supported Pid since its release, responding to player feedback with a gameplay-rebalancing Easy Mode patch late last year. This week's DLC launch commemorates Pid's recent win in the Innovative Newcomer Award category of the European Innovative Games Award competition.

"It's a phenomenal honour to be recognized for all the work we have put into creating a game we are immensely proud of and one we share with our absolutely amazing fans and supporters," Might and Delight CEO Anders Westin said. "Hopefully winning this award will alert a lot more people to the game which really needs to be experienced to be appreciated."

The Button Affair is a stylish semi-autorunner and fundraiser for disabled gamers

February 26, 2013 9:00 PM | John Polson

The Cat that Got the Milk creators Ollie Clark, Helana Santos, Chris Randle, and Jon Mann return with another ultra stylish freeware title, The Button Affair. It's part auto-runner, part platformer staged in the 1950s-60s Jet-Set era and features a classic heist story line that begs for a full-featured expansion.

The Button Affair: now with 100% more buttons! (Feel free to use that one later.) Whereas The Cat was a two-button game, players must use all four arrows here. Players can press the right arrow key to walk forward in stealthy areas and to run faster in others. Players must also jump or duck with the up and down keys. Finally, to activate the save spots, players will use all four arrows to mimic the code.

Messing up anywhere prompts a slick death scene that doesn't last too long to get stale. The action may not be too intense for seasoned Canabalt-ers, but the hand-crafted levels and gorgeous visuals will hook you to the end.

Kingdom Rush, Organ Trail Headline Fifth Set of Greenlit Steam TItles

February 26, 2013 6:00 PM | Danny Cowan

Steam has revealed its fifth set of games and software titles to advance through Steam Greenlight by community vote. Steam users can expect to see Ironhide Game Studio's tower defense game Kingdom Rush, the zombie-themed Oregon Trail parody The Organ Trail, and other featured titles hitting the service in the coming months.

The latest batch of greenlit titles include the following:

Software titles:
- Black Ink
- Driver Fusion

- Anodyne
- Distance
- Evoland
- Huntsman:The Orphanage
- Kingdom Rush
- Legends of Dawn
- Organ Trail: Director's Cut
- Receiver
- Surgeon Simulator 2013
- War Thunder

Greenlight organizers note that listed games are in varying stages of development, and will be released independently by their creators upon completion.

Sean Barrett didn't enjoy Corrypt's twist, makes a free Brough-like anyway

February 26, 2013 3:36 PM | John Polson

promesst 2.pngYou CAN be inspired by a game that you don't complete. That's how I felt about Michael Brough's Corrypt, and developer Sean Barrett (Lost in the Static, Succor) agrees.

Sean was actually inspired enough by the likes of Corrypt and Game Title to lead him to create a freeware puzzler for Windows called Promesst. It certainly looks Brough-like (a new genre, perhaps?), but I was able use powers beyond pushing much more quickly than in Corrypt.

With these powers revealed so early, one can only speculate what happens in Promesst's turning point. While I won't spoil that, I did want to share Sean's thoughts on creating a game that is, oddly enough, not something he'd personally want to play.

Release - Runner2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien

February 26, 2013 12:00 PM | Danny Cowan

Gaijin Games' rhythm-infused platformer BIT.TRIP Presents Runner2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien is now available for Windows, Mac, and Linux via Steam and for the Wii U via Nintendo's eShop.

Following up on Gaijin's episodic BIT.TRIP series, Runner2 introduces franchise star Commander Video to a series of very colorful new environments. The game's a lengthy one, too -- over 120 levels are included in all, and you'll unlock a number of characters and costumes during your journey. An Xbox Live Arcade version of Runner2 will premiere this Wednesday, while a PlayStation 3 port will be available early next month.

Runner2 is regularly priced at $14.99, but is available for $13.49 during its launch week. Runner2 can also be purchased via the ongoing Game Music Bundle, which collects every soundtrack from the BIT.TRIP series for a price of your choosing.

Indie Tools: Dagon

February 26, 2013 9:00 AM | Konstantinos Dimopoulos / Gnome

dagon.pngSenscape's Dagon engine has been open-sourced! And, yes, it's the very same and apparently extraordinarily sleek engine that will be powering horror adventure The Asylum and thus an engine specifically designed for the creation of modern, cutting edge adventure games.

Dagon is still under heavy development, mind you, but you can grab it and enjoy is relatively simple, Lua-based scripting language and impressive performance right here. It already supports Windows, Linux and Mac OS X, is obviously freeware, and will at the very least allow you to mod Asylum. Or create something entirely original like Adamantus.

Keep in mind that, though flexible, Dagon mainly allows for the creation of node-based, pseudo-3D adventure games. It allows for huge environments, provides with a menagerie of transition effects, obviously supports panoramic rotation at each node and seems to be powerful enough to run smoothly on lower spec machines. Oh, and it also effortlessly does graphical effects, cut-scenes, dialogue, puzzles and inventory management.

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