Indie Games

Drop what you're doing; it's time for you to visit YouTube and partake in the amazing Fine Brother's year in review game. They've taken the biggest stories of the year and expressed them in click-to-play style YouTube videos, 27 in all. It's a great way to spend a little time, and expands the definition of what a "video game" actually is. A Triumph!

Indie Game The Dream Machine Amazes

Drop what you're doing and visit this website. It is the home of the The Dream Machine, a free-to-play (partly) indie game that has really struck a chord with me. The game is made entirely of claymation figures and cardboard, and tells the kind of dreamy, surreal story you might expect, given the visuals.

Created by a couple of self-described nerds from Sweden, you'll be able to play the first couple chapters of the Dream Machine for free, in your browsers, with a small price put on the later chapters. Get all the details at The Dream Machine's website. And when you buy it, tell them Steve Johnson sent you. They won't care or anything, but tell them that anyway.

If you do nothing else with your Friday, at least look at this trailer for Octodad, the indie game that stole my heart. In it, you play as a suburban dad who holds a terrible secret: He is actually an octopus. You must keep your secret from your family and friends, while trying valiantly to control each of your eight arms...er, tentacles... individually.

Xbox.com Getting Major Update Tomorrow

Some indie developers are not happy with the changes that have come from yesterday's Xbox 360 dashboard update. At issue: The removal of Xbox Live Indie Games from the proper games store.

Within the "Games & Demos" section of the Games Marketplace, you'll now find Arcade Games, Games on Demand, and Demos, but no "Indie Games." Indie Games now reside in their own section within a separate "Specialty Shops" category, along with the Avatar Marketplace and Game Room.

"It's a categorical failure (literally) ... I'm hear (sic) to mourn Indie Games being known as 'games', which I suppose we must now rename Indie Specialties," said Weapon of Choice developer Mommy's Best Games.

Do you think the new classification of Indie games will make them harder to find? Do you care at all?

Source: Gamasutra

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John Romero is one of the geniuses behind Doom, Quake, Wolfenstein 3D, and let's not forget Dangerous Dave (Dangerous Dave in the Haunted Mansion is his favorite)According to Romero, everything used to be indie games, but then the industry exploded, and now there's a very clear divide. It's really eye-opening to hear one of the biggies behind id talking about independent games, and why he remains excited about them. 


Inside The Mind of John Romero »


Hotel 626

You always leave the best treat for last, right? Hotel 626 wakes you up in the middle of the night and sends you tumbling down the dark rabbit hole of a haunted hotel. You’ll have to get past possessed toddlers, photophobic maids, and more than a couple of murderous madmen if you want to see the morning light.

It’s point-and-click with a twist – all the scenes are live action. Hotel 626 plays like an interactive movie, but there are actual puzzles involved rather than choosing the path to the next reel. Live action really adds something extra creepy to the game. When trying to blind the maid with your camera, you really have to listen for her as she scurries around the dark room. Miss the shot and you’ll get a fleeting picture of what you actually shot in the camera.

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Just when you thought Retro City Rampage couldn't get much more amazing, they up the ante with an amazing soundtrack. Here's a ten minute video with ten of the different songs featured in the game. That music you're hearing? It's from:

  • virt (Jake Kaufman) – Renowned chiptune artist, his work includes Contra 4, Red Faction II, Shantae, Batman: The Brave & the Bold, among DOZENS of other titles.
  • Freaky DNA (Leonard Paul) – Has been working on video games since the Sega Genesis and SNES including NBA '95. Most recently Len completed work on the brand new NBA Jam.
  • Norrin Radd (Matt Creamer) – Who brought deathmetal to the NES with his album Anomaly.


Retro City Rampage Music Video »


Look for more awesomeness when Retro City Rampage launches in the future. This is one title that speaks to that nostalgic gamer buried in all of us, and if you want to download the 10 minute track for free, keep reading and follow the tape trail.


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Even though IndieCade is over, a lot of you might be not familiar with what exactly it is. In a nutshell (an independent nutshell, we might add), it's a celebration of indie games, their developers, ways for them to share resources, hash out ideas, and get inspired. It's also a way for the public to learn about these games, which in most cases you won't hear about anywhere else.

In a world full of top tier titles that costs millions of dollars to develop, it's very refreshing to see a lot of innovation and fun happening in the indie game world. Plus, you never know: today's indie developer might be tomorrow's breakthough game designer. Check out the video below where the IndieCade developers talk about their own games.


Inside The Art Of Indie Games »


Now that you've got some understand about what you can see here, check out what Jake and myself thought about many of the games. I'm still playing Blue Lacuna, which is a game I never would have heard of if it weren't for IndieCade. Show these guys and girls some love, and they'll keep you entertained for hours.

They say when hell is full that the dead shall walk the Earth again. While the concept of zombies is nothing new, dating back centuries and over multiple cultures, the public’s fascination is something rather recent. This horror development reflects a cultural mindset of an enemy coming from within the group. Mechanically, zombies make for the perfect monster since they are both easy to kill, but nearly impossible to stop in a large enough group of ... things.

Imagine being able to control that sheer force of terror by starting a chain reaction of zombies and watching society crumble like fleshy dominos. That’s the idea behind Infectonator: World Dominator.

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You think you know what to do during a zombie outbreak. Aiming for the head has become second nature. There’s a map of escape routes and a handy flashlight near you at all times. You know where to find the closest police station, over-sized mall, and chainsaw. If it really came to it, you also know who at work you would throw into a pack of ravenous flesh-eaters just to get a few seconds head start (Sorry, Trey).

But when the time really comes and you have to make the hard decisions, can you go through with it? Dead Frontier: Outbreak 2 will test your knowledge and the choices you make when it comes to a good old fashion zombie apocalypse.

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Road of the Dead: The Scariest Games You Can Play Right Now

There’s something unnerving about a barren highway stretching out before you.  Even as you slam on the accelerator, nothing seems to change. You only feel good about putting distance between you and whatever is behind you. From out of nowhere, burning wreckage appears scattered down the road. You plow through a chain link fence into the remnants of humanity – people running for their lives, with the army firing bullets everywhere, and, of course, there are the zombies.

In Road of the Dead, all you need to do to survive is to keep your foot on the gas and your hands on the wheel. But nothing is ever simple when you’re running for your life.

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 Fantastic Arcade: Sword & Sworcery EP


Recently, we spent time in AustinTexas at Fantastic Fest. In addition to being the country's best genre film festival (read: geek/horror/sci-fi/Asian/shock), they've added a Fantastic Arcade element that highlights the weird and wacky games out there, particularly in the independent games arena. We'll be presenting those for you right here.

Let's talk about awesome. Are you ready? Sword & Sworcery is a game set to be the premiere release from superbrothers, and while it is still "hip deep in the creation process," according to creator Craig D. Adams, we can report that it is entirely awesome, and manages to pluck both the "nostalgia" and "radass" chords on our heartstrings. 

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The Scariest Games You Can Play Right Now: Exmortis

All week long leading up to Halloween we'll be highlighting the scariest games on the internet that you can play right now. Every title will be free, ready to play, and quite possibly heart attack-inducing.

Like awkward sex scenes in a Friday the 13th movie, point-and-click adventures are the staple of horror games around the internet. Players focus on solving puzzles or poking around disturbing images while looking for a way out. Cheap scares such as the ugly screaming head have an easy means of popping out of nowhere with the distracted player clicking on everything in the scene. While many of these titles are of questionable quality, a few of them stand out from the pack with a couple of genuine scares. Exmortis is one such title.

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Fantastic Arcade: Every Day The Same Dream

Recently, we spent time in Austin, Texas at Fantastic Fest. In addition to being the country's best genre film festival (read: geek/horror/sci-fi/Asian/shock), they've added a Fantastic Arcade element that highlights the weird and wacky games out there, particularly in the independent games arena. We'll be presenting those for you right here.

Every Day The Same Dream represents a trip into the mundane life of an office drone in an effort to underscore the "cyclic nature of most video games." Creator Paolo Pedercini's game at first feels like a pointless experiment where you wake up, get dressed, and go to work, but repeated days compel you to try different paths, and you'll find that each one rewards you differently while taking you one step closer to an unknown goal. 

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Fantastic Arcade: Norrland

Recently, we spent time in Austin, Texas at Fantastic Fest. In addition to being the country's best genre film festival (read: geek/horror/sci-fi/Asian/shock), they've added a Fantastic Arcade element that highlights the weird and wacky games out there, particularly in the independent games arena. We'll be presenting those for you right here.

If you're an indie game developer living in Sweden, what do you call yourself, and what sort of games do you create? Well, if you're Jonatan Soderstrom, then you call yourself cactus, and you get to work designing a redneck simulator called Norrland. It's a game about hunting, fishing, drinking, punching bears, pooping in the woods, playing Russian roulette, and ... well, plenty of other activities that cactus associates with redneck behavior. Activities that could only be described as sordid, and that's on a good day.

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