X

Indie Games

Humble Indie Bundle

Far be it from me to tell you how to spend your money and your time, but you really should check out the Humble Indie Game Bundle. The download pack for PC and Mac contains five award-winning indie games (World of Goo, Aquaria, Lugaru HD, Gish, Penumbra: Overture), and cost whatever you want to pay... and it's for charity. So this is the perfect opportunity to give some indie games a spin and help people.

Read More »

Controversial Arizona Immigration Bill Even Affecting Video Game Developers

There's been plenty of heated debate lately about the recent passing of Arizona Senate Bill 1070, which requires Arizona residents to have proof of identity on themselves or face potential jail-time. Critics allege the bill, which encourages police to investigate individuals "suspected" of being illegal immigrants, will increase racial profiling and doesn't impact the larger issue of illegal immigration.

Part of the national response to the bill has been boycotting Arizona, thereby sending a financial message to state leaders by impacting the bottom line of Arizona businesses. A recent story filed by 3TV in Arizona highlighted several affected businesses -- including an indie game developer.

Who? Why? What game? Keep reading.

[image credit: LA Times]

Read More »

In this installment of Indie Games, Kevin Pereira shows you another addicting flash game called "Home Sheep Home." Created by Aardman Animations, the creative team behind Wallace and Gromit, this fun platform puzzler challenges players to help guide Shaun, Timmy and Shirley back home safely at the barn.

Thanks to Home Sheep Home domestic sheep are entertaining. Bravo.

Indie Games: Home Sheep Home »


Machinarium is an utterly fantastic hand-drawn point-and-click 2D adventure on the PC and Mac. It would make a worthy addition to Xbox Live Arcade with some controller rejiggering. Unfortunately, according to several reports, Machinarium was denied a release on Microsoft's Xbox Live Arcade.

That's not exactly the case. As Microsoft tells it, the company chose to not personally publish Machinarium, forcing Czech Republic developer Amanita Design to pursue a publishing agreement elsewhere to appear on XBLA. Amanita founder Jakub Dvorský told Joystiq he's not interested in that path because it would apparently result in throwing "most of the profit out of the window."

Dvorský further insinuated that Microsoft passed on Machinarium because the game existed on other platforms. I contacted Microsoft last week to clarify their side of the story, but didn't have a chance to publish their response because I was covering Capcom's Captivate event in Hawaii. Here it is:

Read More »

There are games of every type at PAX -- big, small, funny smelling -- and we were there to soak it all in at PAX East, including the nerd sweat. Here's X-Play to walk us through everything indie-related out of PAX in Boston.

 

PAX East 2010 Indie Game Roundup »


 

 

ADVERTISEMENT

Indie games have been making a huge splash recently, thanks in part to XBLA, PSN, and all-inclusive gaming conventions like PAX. Fresh off the plane from PAX East in Boston, Adam was so impressed by all the independent games he saw on the floor he decided to use them as the subject for this week's Soapbox. Do you regularly browse the Indie Games section on XBLA? Do you read about small indie projects on gaming blogs and track their development until they find a method of publishing? Let us know what, if anything, indie games mean to you.

Sessler's Soapbox: Indie Games Need More Love »



Subscribe to G4's WEB SHOWS Video Podcast:


  • Videos
    (1)
  • Screenshots
  • Cheats and Walkthroughs

Cave Story Creator's Letter To Fans, Calls Development

We're less than a week away from Cave Story arriving on WiiWare. The revamped version of Daisuke "Pixel" Amaya's downloadable, Metroid-inspired action platformer has been a long time coming, but on Monday, Cave Story will finally be available. Nintendo passed along a letter from Amaya today to celebrate the launch (explaining why it starts with "Dear Patrick") and I wanted to share it with you, too.

"Dear Patrick:

In composing music and making artwork, anyone can create a world simply by putting them together.

Imagining a video game is incredibly fun and rewarding. However, it's also very difficult to do.

Cave Story, a game that I continued to develop for over five years for fun, is finally complete. I put everything into the game under the assumption that I'd probably never make another again.

Well, like a dream, it's finally a finished product on my favorite console.

Please enjoy your time experiencing and playing the small world called Cave Story!

I want to thank you so much for playing as well as everyone who cheered the developers on."

If we're all lucky, Cave Story won't be Amaya's last contribution to video games.

Have something to share? Sitting on a news tip? E-mail me. You can also follow me on Twitter.

GDC's Gamma IV Games Suggest Maybe You Only Need One Button

Independent or publisher-financed, usually the biggest constraint on game development these days is money. Technology has opened the doors to pretty much anything a designer can imagine, and pretty soon that'll include every part of the human body, too. Video games used to be designed out of constraint because there was no other choice; technology was a limiting factor, putting designers in a box they had to work within. Creativity flourished. There's something to be said for restraint and rules, and that was exemplified at the Gamma IV setup tucked away in the back of GDC last week.

Each year, experimental game group Kokoromi assigns designers a rule for their gaming submissions to qualify. 2010 took a cue from the best iPhone games and demanded the games be designed with one button, and it was remarkable to watch what some clever developers came up with around that ruleset. It's not that big-budget releases couldn't achieve the same level of simplistic creativity found in the Gamma IV games, but innovation in "triple-A" games tends to happen in a much larger stroke.

There isn't a whole lot of media to explain the brilliance of the Gamma IV entries, but hopefully I've collected enough to compliment my explanations for why they're special and worthy of your attention.

It's not hard to pick my favorite Gamma IV entry, however. That mention goes to 4fourths from the duo that is Mikengreg (aka programmer and designer Mike Boxleither and artist Greg Wohlwend), an inspiring and stressful one-button shooter that relies on the strict cooperation of several other people, both directly and indirectly, in order to succeed. You cannot go it alone in 4fourths; that's the point.

Read More »



  • Videos
    (3)
  • Screenshots
  • Cheats and Walkthroughs

  • News
    (4)
  • Previews
  • Review
  • Videos
    (1)
  • Screenshots
  • Cheats and Walkthroughs

  • News
    (4)
  • Previews
  • Review
  • Videos
  • Screenshots
  • Cheats and Walkthroughs

Flower

No one will tell you game development is an easy process. As a medium that's still finding its way, developers are constantly learning about new ways to manage their teams and create a more efficient development process, while still maintaining freedom for creativity. That doesn't always happen, which has lead to the very real problem that game developers burn out quickly and leave the industry.

thatgamecompany (aka the indie studio behind Flower and flOw) producer Robin Hunicke directly addressed this issue during a panel at the Game Developers Conference today.

"It is not just the long hours that burn us out," said Hunicke. "It is the anxiety ... and the feeling that we're failing every day that makes us feel exhausted when we go home the end of the week and drives us into work on a Saturday or Sunday because we lost an argument, because we're not making that progress, because we're afraid of that conversation. We're driving ourselves extra hard and every time we do that, we're sapping ourselves of energy."

Hunicke's talk focused on ways to help game developers get along better, which thatgamecompany theorized leads to better games and developers who will be around longer to make more games.

"It's not just the hours," she reiterated. "It's our attitude about our jobs that makes it hard."

thatgamecompany is currently working on an unannounced new project for PlayStation 3.

Have something to share? Sitting on a news tip? E-mail me. You can also follow me on Twitter.

Sometimes You Have To Realize You're Probably Going To Fail

When Hello Games programmer Sean Murray and his three friends left their roles at large development houses to found Hello Games, the studio behind the IGF-nominated and PlayStation Network-bound Joe Danger, he knew there was a big risk. He knew failure was not only possible -- it was likely.

"We really wanted to do our own thing," said Murray during a talk at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco. "When we were kids, it's all we ever talked about. But we realized when we were leaving, it was a really stupid thing. It was an illogical thing. We're going to do this and we're probably going to crash and burn doing this."

Murray and his friends used to work at companies like Criterion, Sumo and Electronic Arts.

"Most companies don't last very long," he continued. "It's really tough."

The advantage of working on their own, however, meant the studio could quickly adapt.

"We're much more flexible," said Murray. "In theory, we can do amazing things, get people on the same page and that's kind of more powerful...We can do everything ourselves. We can write our own engine. And with marketing, we just kind of talked about 'we'll do something personal to us, we'll do something that we are really interested in, and we'll see how people react to that.'"

Joe Danger arrives this spring on PlayStation Network.

Have something to share? Sitting on a news tip? E-mail me. You can also follow me on Twitter.

The first annual Indie Game Challenge awards held during DICE 2010 a few weeks back, and G4’s own Adam Sessler was on hand to host the awards and chat with the creators behind the impressive titles that deservedly found their way onto the finalists list.

In part one of DICE 2010's Indie Game Challenge awards, G4's Adam Sessler speaks with the creators of Galactic Arms Race, Altitude, Gear and Cogs.

Indie Game Challenge Awards: Part 3 »


 
ADVERTISEMENT

The first annual Indie Game Challenge awards held during DICE 2010 a few weeks back, and G4’s own Adam Sessler was on hand to moderate the awards and chat with the creators behind the impressive titles that deservedly found their way onto the finalists list.

In part one of our three-part Indie Game Challenge video series, Adam speaks with the developers of the time-bending space shooter Zeit 2, the tower defense smash hit Fieldrunners and the elegant puzzler Waker.

Indie Game Challenge Awards: Part 1 »


 
For more Indie Game Challenge award goodness, follow these links:

Surreal IGF Finalist Limbo Coming To Xbox Live Arcade This Summer

Yet another Independent Games Festival finalist is headed to Microsoft's Xbox Live Arcade. Joining the spastic platformer Super Meat Boy is the absolutely surreal Limbo from PLAYDEAD.

I had a chance to play a good chunk of Limbo as a judge for the IGF and was absolutely floored by what PLAYDEAD has put together. Limbo, which follows the journey of a small and fragile boy as he explores the woods, is one of the creepiest platformers I've ever played. The spiders...shudder.

That's a good thing, by the way.

Limbo and the rest of the IGF finalists will be on display at the Game Developers Conference next week in San Francisco. A number of us from G4 will be attending and covering GDC live.

Have something to share? Sitting on a news tip? E-mail me. You can also follow me on Twitter.


  • News
    (21)
  • Previews
  • Review
  • Videos
    (15)
  • Screenshots
  • Cheats and Walkthroughs

  • News
    (18)
  • Previews
  • Review
  • Videos
    (14)
  • Screenshots
  • Cheats and Walkthroughs

Braid's Jonathan Blow Slowly Revealing His Next Game, The Witness

Braid not only took my brain for a weary walk, but it was one of the bigger success stories in the downloadable market. Naturally, gamers are wondering what Braid designer Johnathan Blow is up to next. Blow's next game is called The Witness and he's been revealing bits and pieces about the game through the official development blog, including some concept art.

"For the past 15 years or so, graphics technology in games has been driven by shooters," said Blow in his most recent update. "Most shooters generate visual interest in their scenes by having lots of dynamic lights, with extreme use of bump mapping, and moving shadows, and particle effects. For The Witness, I wanted to develop a graphical style that values simplicity. It would be suited to mellower environments, with both indoor and outdoor settings."

Here's a brief glimpse at where he's going with The Witness.

Read More »

In this installment of Indie Games, Kevin Pereira tries out his disc jockeying skills to bring you a very unique and special game called Record Tripping, in which you have to use the mouse scroll to scratch. What makes it different is you must scratch your way into solving the puzzles. Remixing songs and figuring out the puzzles is a very addicting thing because the puzzle guides you into scratching a very nice beat.


If you like or want to put your disc jockeying skills to the test, this is one game you have to check out.

Indie Games: Record Tripping »


 

 

« Newer Posts | | Older Posts

ADVERTISEMENT

Blog Tags

g4tv.com
  • International Sexy Ladies Show: Messy Cat Fight

    Posted: January 27, 2010

    644,696 Views | 00:49

  • Sara Underwood's Naked Bike Ride

    Posted: June 22, 2011

    1,316,284 Views | 05:20

  • Laser Snake Robots, More Mars Rovers and BigDog Is Back

    Posted: September 25, 2012

    1,290 Views | 03:00

  • NBA 2K13 Launch Trailer

    Posted: October 4, 2012

    5,601 Views | 01:53

  • Casual Vomiting - Web Soup Investigates

    Posted: March 30, 2011

    7,570 Views | 02:52

Poll: Are you going to buy a Wii U?

AdChoices