Thursday, January 29, 2015

Gaming: Indie Games Everywhere~ At the NYC Arcade

I deeply apologize for this intensely late post.  

                   So a while back around January 15th Karrlem and I went to an awesome event called NYC Arcade, which was basically a showcase of Indie Developers showcasing their games which are currently in development or already released.  There were so many amazing people there with just as amazing games. We've actually been spending some time at the NYU Game Center where they have PlayTest Thursdays where you basically can test out other developer's games or the students's work in progress. So there were a few familiar faces from the Game Center, such as the creator of Sunburn which I believe we played before it was released (sadly I missed the release party, finals week) 

There's just so many games I'd like to talk about but I'll be as brief as possible about the ones I got a chance to look at and play.

Elbow Room, by Deep Dark Hole. 

(iOS, PC, Mac) In Development.
This is the first game I set my eyes on and got addicted to instantly (still waiting for its release). Basically it's a party game that you play with your friends via computer or tablet and the point of the game is to crowd around said tablet or computer (hence the name Elbow Room) and tap your key whenever the marker is in your range. The marker is kinda like a hot potato that you toss to the next player or toss back to the previous player. The game gets a bit tricky depending on how your friends play if they choose to toss the marker back and forth or keep it in their range for a little while before tossing it back and also depending on the number of players so for example if there's 2-3 players the ranges instead of being more consistent it will start to bounce around with the beat and change sizes wether its small or big. This game calls for a lot of focusing and keeping your attention span under control. Aesthetically this game is really pretty with bold, bright, yet simple colors and a catchy beat giving the feeling of a hot potato party.

Sticker Swap, by Simple Machine. 

(iOS, Android?) Available now. 
So the next game we moved on to was "Sticker Swap". I kid you not, I actually went and downloaded this game later that night, it's free in the iOS store soooo YOU SHOULD GO DOWNLOAD IT TOO!! This is pretty much an adorable puzzle game and I mean ab-so-lu-te-ly adorable.  It's a mix and match puzzle game, where you basically match up your currently selected sticker with two or more other stickers, and continue from there on. They're currently working on extra content that should be out soon, with stickers that do extra stuff, such as Birthday Rex who after certain matchups you will get "Cake Time" you click on as many stickers and turn them into cakes and that turns into your multiplier so use your time wisely and get extra points. There's also an archeologist (the troll of the game), he's for those who want their game difficult, basically he has fossils hanging around and HAVE to break the fossils by doing matchups around them. You cannot click on them if they're between other stickers that you want to matchup they're basically obstacles.  I believe in "Cake Time"  you can touch them turn them into cake though.

Off-Peak, by Archie Pelago. 

(PC, Mac?) In Development.
An interesting Click and Play game. I'm a SUCKER for games with strong narratives, interesting stories that may or may not be cryptic, and that's exactly what Off-Peak was game with a lot of dialog which you eventually had to put together and try to get an idea of the back story of the world you're in.  Not only dialog but the environment makes you want to think and wonder. The music is also a big part of the game the music goes well and just fits in perfectly with the entire game, only keeping your interest. (funfact the designer is actually apart of band who made the music!) You're running around a station looking for pieces of a train ticket and while doing this you meet a few interesting people, eavesdrop on people planning on rebellion,  steal a few pizzas, get high off of some eerie yet delicious cookies, find a giant man who won't play the piano. It makes you wanna figure out what's going on and if you can help or not, it feels as if you WANT side quests while already on your tedious mission of looking for tiny pieces of a ticket! I recently became a fan of Click and Plays so I was glad to encounter this game at the NYC Arcade and try it out. If you're not a big fan of too much dialog thats okay you can just keep playing through the game and enjoy the environment and music but the extra dialogs just give an extra kick to the experience.

Once Upon A Runner,  by Luminosity Games. 

(Android) Available Now. 
A really cute fairytale side-scrolling game. I didn't really play this I simply watched Karrlem play while speaking to the creator. This is basically a game about a fire mage who somehow got lost in the forest and must find her way out by visiting familiar fairytales and fighting her way through them. What I found interesting was that it has its own twist on fairytales and in between each stage there's a cutscene that's actually like a comic book about the story of Ella, the fire mage and her adventure.  It seems pretty simple at first just running across the screen jumping over obstacles and shooting fireballs, but no! It eventually becomes more and more difficult and not only that but unlike most games where they -want- you to collect as many gems as you can in this game it places gems that are literally impossible to get which can kinda trick you but also get you to stop being so greedy and just get what you can and enjoy the game.

Sunburn, by Secret Crush. 

(iOS) Available Now.
"Nobody Dies Alone" That alone should interest you, because really who would want to die alone when your ship has crashed in space? This is a really interesting iOS game that I actually played before release date back at NYU's Game Test Thursdays. First off it's beautiful the design is beautiful. The colors and the pixels it definitely catches your eyes and just looks amazing. The idea of the game is really interesting, basically you gather all the squad mates and blissfully dive into your horrendous burning death via sun. While it sounds easy at first it's totally not, there are many obstacles such as running out of oxygen,  asteroids, your squad mates being all over the place! Its a bit difficult, maybe I just suck (I really do suck at this game, but oh my god its addictive). Personally for me this is definitely a game where it makes you feel accomplished after failing a few times and finally managing to gather all your squad mates. This game also has incredibly funny dark humor I mean seriously your squad mates will get mad at you because you died without them or because you left them and died with other people. The whole concept of this game is hilarious before you even start it up and it just gets better as you play.

There were so much more games, but we didn't get to try them out. But eventually we will one day. Hoping to go to IndieCade East to try out more indie games.  

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