Tag Archives: indie

Grow Home: The Most Old-Style 3D Platformer


I haven’t been playing a lot of Super Mario 3D World recently, but thinking about it and why I was excited enough to make it my first Wii U game purchase brought to my mind the rarity of 3D platformers in this era. That also kind of gives me an opportunity to write a bit about Ubisoft’s Grow Home if you still haven’t played it. Continue reading

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Indie Game Radar: Super Star Path


This edition of Good Indie Games No One Is Talking About is for one that actually came out last June. It was one of the games I picked up during the last winter sale at a likely completely trivial price, and I just played through most of it. Since Destructoid is the closest thing to a mainstream gaming site that has said anything about Super Star Path (that tends to be how it goes for games this obscure), I thought I’d at least say a few words.

Basically, Super Star Path tries to combine the shoot em’ up with the falling block puzzle game. For the most part I think it succeeds at creating something that require the skills of both genres. When you think about it it’s a really smart mix of gameplay and is very well executed. It’s just that this is a small game. I mean really small. I reached the final boss and got just about every collectible in less than two hours. Continue reading

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2015 Recap/Interesting Games of 2015


Most years when I do Game of the Year recaps I start off with a section, usually a separate blog post, of my favorite games in each genre for that year. I didn’t do it last year because 2014 was actually a pretty uninteresting year for me gaming-wise. I’m not doing it this year because genres didn’t really stand out enough for me among what I played, but I still think 2015 overall has been the best year of gaming since 2011.

If you look at my GOTY posts for 2012, 2013, and 2014, in all of them I lamented that I was sort of losing interest in AAA games while indie games kept getting better. 2011 had been the last year in which you had a lot of releases that were simultaneously filled with production value, hype, and interesting content like Deus Ex: Human RevolutionThe Witcher 2Portal 2The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, and the original Dark Souls. Since that year I’ve learned to completely ignore the regularly occurring franchise games to the point where they’re just background noise for me, and was was left that really grabbed me was almost all indie.

In a lot of previous posts I said I thought 2015 was going to flip things around, and it did. The indie space has remained amazing, but games with big-budgets and content that feels new also showed up again this year. What’s even better is that this trend seems to be continuing into 2016. Continue reading

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Indie Game Radar: CrossCode, Indie Demos, And RPGMaker


With the back-to-back massive time-sucks of The Witcher 3 and Metal Gear Solid V finally behind me, I found the time to do a few things I’d been putting off… with one stone in fact. Not only have I been looking at quite a few demos that showed up on Steam over the last few months, but I’ve also been wondering about all these indie RPGs that seem to inundate my discovery que almost every day. Continue reading

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Dying Light Indicates The State Of Demos Today


So a demo just came out for Dying Light and I think that’s kind of a big deal given the current landscape of demos. It’s also the one game I had recently wished had a demo. The way Techland and Warner Bros. handled this, and the way other companies do demos, is indicating a change in how and why companies release them.

Last year I noted how demos had become very rare for big-budget console games in this new PS4 and Xbox One era. Today not much has changed. It wouldn’t be absurd to say in that capacity pre-release demos are dying. When you look at the landscape of who does and doesn’t do demos anymore it’s probably more accurate to say not all developers need them anymore, or need them for the same reasons. Continue reading

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Indie Game Radar: Banned Memories


On this blog I’ve repeatedly talked about my affinity for a certain era of 3D graphics, specifically the flat-shaded textureless kind you might see in SEGA Model 1 games like the original Virtua Fighter and are being revived in games like Sky Rogue. There seems to at least be a nascent movement of low-polygon video game art emerging and it may be moving through certain phases so to speak.

Following the popularity of the “Minecraft look” and other low-poly art, I’ve started to see some projects show up that are intentionally trying to look like games made for the original PlayStation. The idea is similar to how Shovel Knight and Oniken specifically want to look like NES games rather than simply “8-bit.” I think the project Back in 1995 is fairly well-known, but I only just heard about Banned Memories and decided to check out the currently public alpha demo. So far I’ve only seen it mentioned by destructoid, Kill Screen, and a bunch of YouTubers. Continue reading

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Indie Game Radar: Snakebird


I was holding off on talking about Noumenon Games’ Snakebird because I’d hoped I could finish it in some kind of timely manner and pitch someone to publish my review of it, but at this point the game has pretty much beaten me. I may return to it at some point, but all I can do in the near term is talk about this criminally underplayed game and warn you that it may crush your spirit.

Snakebird is one of those rare examples of a truly unique idea for a puzzle game serviced with good level design and wrapped in an attractive graphical style — pretty much all the ingredients for a great puzzle game. This is one of the better recent Steam releases that almost no one is talking about. Continue reading

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On Recent Changes In Indie Game Pricing


After a Steam sale and the closing of Tales of Tales a few people are talking about sales and pricing on Steam again. As a consumer I’d like to believe the store isn’t facing a mobile-style race to the bottom, but things have certainly been changing ever since Valve started allowing a much higher volume of games in. Continue reading

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Solarix And Other Indie Immersive Sim Games


If you didn’t see it in the notes previously, I reviewed a little game called Solarix last week for Paste Magazine. As I wrote in the review, I see it as kind of the beginning of a possible wave of immersive simulators from indie developers. I imagine that’s a relatively difficult and expensive type of game to make, but it seems like we’re finally getting there. Continue reading

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Indie Game Radar: Blue Revolver


I am not a major shoot-em-up player. I would even go as far as to admit I dislike bullet hell games. Too often I come upon a game that has a really cool box art, only to find it’s a shmup with almost no full-blown representation of the florid art on its cover. I mostly look past the sea of these games that have become a bit more prominent in the indie scene these days (shmups have probably always been a staple of indie PC games). But I gotta say, a handful have caught my attention despite all this. One such game that’s on the way is Blue Revolver. Continue reading

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