July 26, 2013 2:30 PM | John Polson
With the upcoming home release of Messhof's Nidhogg, a long-time exclusive for public exhibitions, I looked at NYU's 4th annual No Quarter commissioned projects in the above awesome video with a little more hope. Maybe indie arcade games, like those games during the arcade boom, would start coming home in bigger numbers.
Turns out, I was wrong, but with (mostly) good reason!
First up for discussion: There Shall Be Lancing by Sophie Holden, a two-player spherical lancing game. Sophie told me, "I'm currently working on fixing up my game, adding single player, and looking into platforms and funding options."
The Split Tree by Matthew LoPresti is a terraforming game for two players and one controller. Matthew says Split Tree on PC anytime soon is doubtful. "Game just needs a ton of work, but it'll probably be an ongoing project."
Bennett Foddy's Speed Chess by Bennett Foddy is a sixteen-player, real-time chess game. Bennett's outlook was even less optimistic. "The chess game would be pretty meaningless online. I can't see how I could sell it [to be honest], I might give it away for free."
I admit I mostly agree with Sophie's sentiment that "where you play gives huge context for social [arcade] games," and Speed Chess's quick rounds may not be that conducive to online play.
As of this write up I couldn't get in touch with Nikita Mikros and Josh DeBonis about Killer Queen, their "10-player game arcade game where two teams, each lead by a queen, attempt to fill their base with nectar, race their snail home, or kill off the other team's queen first," as described by No Quarter.
In my naivety, I think of those 8-vs-8 squad-type online games and wonder just maybe Speed Chess and Killer Queen could work. Of course, releasing a local co-op game versus dealing with online co-op are two different programming beasts entirely. I just have to wait until I'm in a cool enough city to have these games or figure out a space so they can be enjoyed as their creators intended. The developers sound willing to share their games; it just boils down to a logistics issue.
That's what events such as NYU's No Quarter are for and have become so good at.
[video from NYU Game Center]