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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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Black Hole Joyrider Sends Players Hurtling to Their Death in Space

May 10, 2016 6:30 PM | Joel Couture

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You're being sucked down a gravity well in Black Hole Joyrider, and there's little you can do about it. Straying outside of it is much, much worse for your continued life, though, so you'll need to carefully apply the brakes in order to guide yourself around the various loops and turns of the well.

Doesn't sound so bad, except this isn't a car, it's a space ship. Braking requires use of reverse thrusters, which requires fuel, of which you have a limited supply. So, you'll need to be sparing with those brakes to keep from running out of fuel for them, but also use them enough that you don't send your ship into the crushing void. But her, at least you'll have some nice Mozart to listen to while your body gets pulped by your pulverized ship!

Capturing Ghost Recordings Looks Better Than Ever With Sylvio Remastered

May 9, 2016 6:00 PM | Joel Couture


Sylvio was an eerie, unique experience, one that created fear using unsettling EVP recordings that had to be unscrambled to hear the frightening ghostly voices within. That experience of collecting those voices in the game's foreboding environments has been given an entire visual overhaul by its developer, Stroboskop, creating a new look for the game's strange environments in Sylvio Remastered.

This large visual update, which redoes the whole game in Unity 5, also comes with some enhancements to gameplay mechanics and controller support. Much has changed in the game, but those garbled whispers in the dark remain intact, still calling out to players from within the creepy red mists of the game's haunted park. There is little quite like it in horror these days, and these tweaks help the game's scary voice recordings really shine. Sylvio Remastered is a standout experience in fear, both for new players and for ones who've already tried the original before.

First-person programming puzzler Glitchspace now out of Early Access

May 7, 2016 11:40 AM | Lena LeRay

glitchspace.pngThere is a growing body of puzzle games which directly incorporate programming as a game mechanic. For most of those, programming a specific outcome is the player's direct goal. Glitchspace, however, makes visual programming a tool at the player's disposal. The player must use programming to "hack" objects to do things like removing obstacles and bridging gaps so they can achieve their goal.

State of Anarchy is a Living Notebook Doodle of GTA

May 4, 2016 8:00 AM | Joel Couture


When I wasn't able to get a game as a kid, I used to draw pictures of what I imagined it would be like. I'd make up characters and scenarios based on what I knew, drawing out scenes of combat and tense exchanges. So, when I look at State of Anarchy, a GTA-like top-down shooter with a hand-drawn style, all I can think of are kids drawing out the events they imagine are happening in the open-world crime game.

Designed as a casual take on top-down criminal activity, State of Anarchy lets players loose in an open world filled with weapons and cars to steal, letting them do whatever they want. This likely means a lot of penned blood stains, scribbled tire tread marks, and blue ink explosions, all drawn in the chaotic style of a kid with a blank page. Give it a look if you want to cut loose in a sillier way and get back to those lost notebooks filled with army battles and other combat scenes you drew in boring math classes.

Angelic Aim Guides Your Shots in Acrobatic Sidescroller Seraph

May 3, 2016 11:00 AM | Joel Couture


An angel is trapped inside of a human vessel, who in turn is trapped in a prison filled with demons, in Seraph, a sidescrolling action game now out on Steam Early Access. If the vessel dies, so does she, so the angel will aim all of the vessel's shots. The vessel just has to pull the trigger and keep from getting hurt using an array of acrobatic moves as she blasts her monstrous opponents.

The more successful you are at Seraph, the harder its enemies get, though, so players will find themselves constantly challenged in the procedurally-generated levels. The game also features Twitch integration that will let viewers add positive or negative modifiers, so if the game seems too hard or easy, maybe some strangers on the internet will help you out. Maybe. Probably not, but maybe.

Find a Samurai Master's Story in Your Wanderings Across the Peaceful World of Niten

May 2, 2016 8:00 AM | Joel Couture

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Niten gives players a remote Japanese island to explore, on PC or VR, letting them soak in the hidden stories and secrets as they explore. The narrative exploration game will have snippets of audio storyline within its bamboo forests and quiet shorelines, telling the tale of a samurai master and his orphan apprentice. These will be told in English or Japanese, and spoken by native speakers to preserve authenticity. Each story fragment you uncover will also unlock pages from a graphic novel, slowly collecting the game's story in one place.

With this game created to be a new world for you to inhabit, the developers have also included a home and zen garden for you to take care of. You'll be able to decorate or organize this small, personal place as you see fit, filling it with statues, unique collectibles, and other items. Niten is designed to be a place of peace and introspection, one that also contains an interesting story should players seek it out.

Tired of Election Woes? Let a Cat President Solve Your Problems!

April 30, 2016 8:00 AM | Joel Couture


Love trumps politics in Cat President ~A More Purrfect Union~, a visual novel/dating sim and yet another ridiculous game from the developer of A Stranger Comes Calling. In it, players are thrown into the life of a campaign manager who doesn't know what she's doing, but who's been selected to help out on the campaign for six potential feline presidents after humans have been banned from all politics. Which kind of seems like a good idea lately.

After choosing a cat to back, you'll be sucked into the whirlwind lives of their run for the presidency, and maybe get a little bit closer to these charismatic creatures, all drawn from real cats, along the way. Through an interactive narrative, will you choose to help Dr Nom Noms, DJ Nibbles, Thunderpaw, or the mysterious, somewhat-off Rover? Will you keep your head buried in this game to avoid the frightening nightmare that is real politics?

Trailer Roundup for April 29, 2016

April 29, 2016 8:20 AM | Lena LeRay

himeko.gifThis will be the last trailer roundup for a few weeks, but I'm happy to say this is a really good one. Space, mourning, consequence, war, sociology, explosions, mushrooms, nightmares, milk, and river rapids.

Bring Nuclear Disaster With Your Curiosity in MINUTEMAN

April 29, 2016 7:30 AM | Joel Couture


An abandoned fallout shelter is not the best place for a kid to be screwing around, but in free Twine game MINUTEMAN, you can't let a little danger get in the way of your curiosity. Although you should, as puttering around the old shelter and fiddling with the equipment there can lead to some catastrophic events if you're not careful. And how many children are careful when presented with a bunch of neat stuff to play with and no adult to tell them no?

No matter who makes them, in MINUTEMAN, mistakes made out of curiosity still carry great weight. Consequences do not care who brought them about. Simple play turns grave and dark during the course of the game, showing how quickly lives can turn from the simplest unintended actions. At times playful, at others dark, MINUTEMAN is an unsettling look at the dangerous things we leave carelessly unguarded against childhood curiosity.

ArmaGallant: Decks of Destiny combines a deckbuilding game with RTS

April 28, 2016 1:37 PM | Jeremy Ooi

ArmaGallant: Decks of Destiny for the PS4 is combines deckbuilding games, with a real-time strategy battle system designed to be played online. The game plays out like a standard RTS game, where each player will take one side of a large map with a single goal: capturing all the key points. Instead of building bases, your deck serves as the source of your fighting units. Using a recharging mana system, you can summon monsters to capture points, or cast buffing, de-buffing, or direct damage spells.

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