Remembering Toys”R”Us - is this the end or the beginning of something else?Read More
Just starting off in Stardew Valley or just off to a great start? These tips will help get you through Spring and prepared for Summer!Read More
Evangeline brings a personal message for all to experienceRead More
Playstation VR is a great virtual reality setup, especially for the priceRead More
Q & A with Panic Button and Circle 5 Studios about Primal Carnage: Extinction, and more!Read More
indie developer Void Softworks making AAA experience with their game, Abigale Cypher.Read More
After its successful launch last year, PixelPop returned for another go for indie developers and gamers alike. Spreading the festival to two days instead of one, there was plenty of time to sit down and play games and meet the developers behind them. In our two days at PixlePop, here are just some of the fascinating games that we seen.
StacksOnStacks(OnStacks) is actually quirkier than the name implies. With a Katamari Damacy approach to the music, color palate and art direction, the game starts simple and adds funny moments throughout. Using blocks that fall from the top of the screen, the goal is to build with these structures to specific heights. It is easy to mistake this for a Tetris clone, but SoSoS is a lot more. StacksOnStacks(OnStacks) is a physics based puzzler where you attempt to stack blocks as high as possible while staying within the playing field. It sounds simple, but with a random assortment of different shapes and sizes it is much easier said than done. Similar Tetris, the type of block that drops is completely random. Fortunately, the playing zone has a little extra room to put those blocks that are not quite what you need. Be careful though, if your stack gives way and a piece falls off the board it is game over. StacksOnStacks(OnStacks) has a fixed camera that can be rotated to one of only four positions. This makes using the shadow of a falling shape necessary to line up your pieces. Trying different combinations of blocks to achieve a certain height is fun and engaging, and the random nature of pieces forces you to come up with and change strategies quickly. As an added bonus you get to take a wrecking ball to the stack you just so carefully built and demo the playing field. It is super satisfying to knock down your creation after diligently assembling your tower of geometry.
There is also an Arcade mode which tasks you with stacking blocks to meet a specific height. Want to share the zaniness with a friend? Arcade mode also offers a two player co-op option where players take turns stacking towards their height goal. From what we played, implementing another player to the mix added a whole mess of fun and chaos. Teamwork is definitely needed to hit the targeted height, and ends in exclamations when the stack topples over.
Pixel Press was back with another create-it-yourself game called Bloxels. While Adventure Time Game Wizard's hook was the ability to draw your levels on paper, that concept has been taken to the next level in Bloxels. By using a game board you can place different colored cubes that represent various properties of a game, like ground and platforms, water, enemies, NPCs and more. Once you have a game designed just snap a picture with a smartphone or tablet to capture your creation for use in the game. Whether it is a section of a level or just pixel art, the limit is really your imagination. The game board presents a physical aspect of building that has not really been tapped yet for video games. While you will be able to design art and levels in the free app for Bloxels, the ability to create on a game board could be fun for get-togethers or a classroom environment. Players will then be able to share their creations with others to download and use for themselves. Those who are into pixel art or designing levels should really keep an eye out for Bloxels.
Iggy's Egg Adventure was at PixelPop again, fresh from its retail release a few weeks ago. With Donkey Kong inspirations, IEA is a challenging platformer that merges a cute aesthetic with tons of ways to die. If you have played platformers from the late 80's through the 90's you will love the modern touches Iggy's Egg Adventure has applied to the genre. The final product turned out very well, and attendees were able to play through the entire game as well as try out every character. If you want to know more about Iggy's, check out our article for more about the game!
If strategy card games are more your thing, Cards and Castles has you covered. With simple to understand mechanics, deep meta and a large variety of cards to collect, CaC nails it with this collectible card game. Plot out your plan of attack on the game board, and take down the enemies castle before they can destroy yours. Cards and Castles is looking good as it heads towards its Early Access release on Steam this Friday, September 18th. As with Iggy's, we have our impressions of Cards and Castles up that highlights a lot of the features that were brought in the 2.0 update. You can check out the article for more info!
We also happened upon a 3D pixel game called Barony, which is a roguelike dungeon RPG with co-op. With an aesthetic very similar to Minecraft, the game takes inspirations from Ultima Underworld and System Shock. Be careful, as hastily running in will get you into trouble and killed faster than you can say help. You can choose to go solo or join up with three others in private hosted matches. Although the demo at PixelPop only allowed for two players, that did not stop Barony from showing how fatal things can get if you forgo cooperating with your team. We died very easily while going out on our own, which demonstrates that relying on your partner is very crucial. Barony recently released in the latter part of June on Steam, where you can find more screenshots and videos of the game!
"Flipping" over to the tabletop genre is a fun little card game titled Flip Hue. Flip Hue has an interesting mechanic where you are not only playing your hand, but the back of your friends hands as well. The goal is to match all five cards in your hand to your faction card sitting on the table. The first twist is while players can see only one color that you must match, the other side of the card has a different color that other players cannot see. Furthermore, all of the cards are double-sided, with faction colors on each side. So not only are you playing the cards that only you can see in your hand, but the faction cards of other players that they cannot see.
One of the more simple but charming games at this years PixelPop was Sleepy Kraken. For once, you are not trying to hunt the monster, but rather help it. With noisy pirates sailing over the ocean, it is kind of hard for the Kraken to get some sleep. By tapping on the screen, you can direct where the Kraken's tentacle goes which will destroy any pirate ship it comes in contact with. As you keep destroying pirate ships, the speed and amount of ships increases. You will need to stop them as early as possible, the more pirates that travel the ocean the closer the Kraken is to waking up. Once all the "Z's" near the Kraken are reduced, the beast is awoken and it is game over. The graphics are charming and trying to get the high score can be quite addicting. Sleepy Kraken is a great pick-up game, which releases later this fall.
A glimpse of Excelsior was also at the convention, which showcased just a sample of what can be expected. While Excelsior is set to be more of an open world game with inspirations from The Legend of Zelda, a single screen survival mode was on display at PixelPop. Very reminiscent of Zelda in both art and perspective, the demo consisted of taking on a number of ever increasing ants. With a sword slash and ranged shot, taking on these hordes of ants was fun with four players. While it did not showcase the true potential of the game, the four-player aspect was engaging enough to keep Excelsior in mind as its development continues.
When someone is making a retro game, they usually make a game inspired by retro consoles. 26 gy takes a different approach and channels a ton of story into its Commodore 64 influenced graphics. While some games are overtly flashy and colorful, 26 gy aims to amuse your mind. The intro lays out both the story and mechanics; you've been exposed to an extremely lethal dose of radiation which leaves you with only 72 hours left to live. In a twist of fate, you get the opportunity to do something that will change your life, as long as your failing health will allow. 26 gy opts for a de-leveling system, where you combat your stats downgrading as the radiation poisoning slowly takes over. The mechanics and plot in 26 gy are quite different from a lot of other games we seen at PixelPop.
Variety was of no shortage at PixelPop 2015. With games just released or in development, there was plenty to play now or get excited for the future.
Iggy's Egg Adventure is a 3D side scrolling platformer which takes a modern approach to the classic genre. Reminiscent of a games I played endlessly as a kid (Donkey Kong Land/Country), Iggy's takes the formula and updates it with all the features we have come to expect from games. From save states, additional playable characters, character customization via alternate costumes, and a built in Time Attack mode for speed runs, Iggy's Egg Adventure captures that nostalgia feeling without feeling out dated.
To start with, Iggy's is super cute. The character designs and costumes are mouth-open-saying-"awwe" adorable. Also it is kind of bloody in a hilarious, contrasting manner. Think of it like a less gory Happy Tree Friends, it is so cute until something dies a bloody death. Iggy is not exempt from those chuckle inducing deaths either; you will find him falling to clever traps, environmental hazards, aggressive cavemen or other dinos.
With everything working against baby Iggy as he tries to find his mom, one advantage is the simple controls. Controllers are not only supported, but the best way to navigate the different terrains. Keyboard is supported as well with both input options providing you with two different buttons for each action. We suggest taking a quick look at the controls when you start up, it takes only a few seconds and will help you a lot right off the bat. Iggy's is not much for holding your hand which becomes apparent as you encounter new obstacles as you go.
Iggy's Egg Adventure starts off pretty simple as it teaches you a lot of the basics in the first world. As you progress through the different environments new challenges appear that test your platforming skills. Sneaky predators and environments get increasingly more difficult, challenging even seasoned platformers by the end. Iggy's has what it takes to be fun for newcomers to this style of game but demanding enough for vets.
Iggy's Egg Adventure was created by only two guys over two years, Ginger Labs does a great job with their debut game. The environments are vibrant and beautiful, the platforming feels good, and the guys at Fat Bard nail the music. The team here at tag have been testing Iggy's for almost a year now, and still fire it up after launch. IEA is on sale now on Steam and 10% off until September 3rd, and at $10 Iggy's is a good deal on a good game.
Iggy's Egg Adventure on Steam: http://store.steampowered.com/app/366040/
Iggy's Egg Adventure website: http://www.iggyseggadventure.com/
Fat Bard Iggy's soundtrack: https://fatbard.bandcamp.com/album/iggys-egg-adventure
how Cards and Castles 2.0 is recapturing the magic and raising the barRead More
nine interesting features of the Xbox Elite Wireless ControllerRead More
how the Xbox Elite Wireless Controller is blowing the competition away in the pro controller marketRead More
Holiday Giveaway!Read More
has the white Sunset Overdrive Xbox One bundle sold out for good?Read More
Iggy's Egg Adventure is a charming side scrolling platformer in the vain of early 90's games on the NES, SNES, Genesis, etc. Iggy is a baby Velociraptor, whose mother has been taken, and now must go on a quest to save her, in the mean time collecting all the eggs she left behind. The finished version will feature 18 levels across six zones: Plains, Jungle, Desert, Arctic, Tar Pits, Volcano. Also included will be three mini-bosses and three main bosses. While no details are known for the boss battles, we do know that one of them will feature a T-Rex. Characters and costumes will be unlockable as well.
Starting the game right away, the graphics and scenery just bring back the old days of the side scrolling platformer. The graphics are colorful, and the environments you move around in are all modeled in 3D, but moving in a 2D plane. Iggy himself can run, sprint, bite, jump, and do a leap attack. All of these will be needed to make your way through the level.
If playing with a controller (I myself play with an Xbox 360 controller ) Iggy moves pretty well. Using an Xbox 360 controller, Iggy moves with the left stick, sprints by holding down left trigger, jumps with the A button, bites with right bumper, and leap attacks with the right trigger. When jumping, Iggy has sort of a floaty jump. It's very precision based, and while it may appear tricky at first, it's something that works based on the level design.
Along the way, you can collect eggs, as well as dispatch enemies scattered throughout the level. Collecting eggs is as easy as running and jumping through them. While some are easy to collect, there are some that will challenge you. Sometimes it involves leaping at the right time and the right angle, while others may require a leap attack to snatch all the eggs, which are conveniently above pits and obstacles. Bigger eggs are hidden throughout the levels as well, and those can be a real challenging to collect. Sometimes they are just out of sight while others require a little more skill to collect. Collecting 100 eggs will get you an extra life, and trust me, you will need them.
Do not let the game's cute presence fool you, the platforming here is tough. Jumping over spiked roots, landing on small platforms just big enough for Iggy while over a pit, nothing is as easy as it seems. The pacing is also done well. Just when you have the hang of the level, something comes out of the ordinary. Maybe it's the boulders on the desert level, or the breaking ice in the arctic level, curve balls get thrown when you start to get comfortable. Many times I have to make a running leap from a small platform to another small platform. The feel is very reminiscent of old platformers such as Donkey Kong Country. Platforming is very challenging, always asking the player to pay the consequences if they miss a jump. Thankfully, checkpoints are scattered throughout the level in key areas to keep a good pace.
No platformer would be complete without enemies, and Iggy's enemies are here to make things difficult. From badgers to saber tooth tigers, each enemy has different attacks and ways to defeat them. Most enemies can be defeated by going old school and landing on top of them, or as the ferocious dinosaur, Iggy can leap and bite enemies to defeat them. What truly makes the enemies dangerous is their placement throughout the levels. Taking out a caveman on a straight path is pretty simple, but jumping on small platforms over a pit with a spear throwing caveman can be a challenge.
Adding even more difficulty are some "instant death" enemies like whales and giant salamanders that can end your run in a hurry. Playing on the Tar Pit levels, you come across rocks floating on tar that you can easily run and jump across. However, pay attention, because some of the rocks are actually salamanders that will swallow Iggy whole if he runs into them. Camouflaged well by surrounding rocks and only visible by one of their eyes, players must always be on alert for a wannabe rock looking for some fresh food.
Playing Iggy's Egg Adventure brings back nostalgic feeling for me. Tensing up while performing some tricky platforming, gasping when a whale pops from under the ice to eat Iggy, these are feelings I used to have as a kid- while glued to my tv playing various games. The tough, "old school" challenge is a welcome change to the recent trend of games that tend to be a little too generous at times.
Even for just an Alpha, I really enjoy Iggy's Egg Adventure. Even in its alpha stage the platforming and difficulty reminds me so much of the games I enjoyed from back-in-the-day. The level design is challenging, the music is very fitting for the mood, and the game is just fun to play. Check out the free demo available at iggyseggadventure.com. Please vote for Iggy's Egg Adventure on Steam Greenlight, to get Iggy's Egg Adventure out there! For the latest happenings with the game, Ginger Labs post updates to their official Facebook page and Twitter. Want to see the game in action? Watch our let's play here or at the link below.
Cards and Castles is a fun and adictive mobile gameRead More
A look into Aylo Games, and the development of Twitch Plays RobotRead More
Twitch Plays Robot is both innovative and interestingRead More
Puzzle games have picked up some steam in the last few years. Whether it's been from crashing birds into platforms or matching similiar candy together, it's safe to say that the genre is alive and going strong. There have been many hybrids, including some lately that mix RPG elements with puzzles. However, I have not seen anything like Tomb Of Tyrants before, but so glad that I stumbled upon it.
Tomb of Tyrants is a dungeon-defense puzzler where you play the role of the evil Tyrant rather than a heroic adventurer. Matching resource tiles together in groups of four helps build floors that are littered with monsters and traps. The game starts with just the Tyrant's Sanctum and you need to clear tiles to gather not only resources but to clear space for additional floors. The Tyrant is very weak, heroes entering the Sanctum will end the game quickly. This is where building floors and arming them with monsters comes into play.
Once the game starts, you must quickly start eliminating tiles to gather resources, space to make floors with monsters and traps to fill them with. Matching tiles requires clicking on a row and dragging it horizontally, an easy system that does not take long to get used to. Matching four of the same color icons will eliminate the tiles and add them to your resource pile. Multipliers are rewarded for matching large groups or multiple regions to tiles. Your resource pile consists of eight different categories: Gear, Ruins, flesh, bone, arcana, scrap, loot, and growth. Each floor you build costs different amounts of resources, as well with supplying them with monsters and traps.
Don't let the puzzle genre fool you, this game is intense. Not only are you constantly trying to use puzzle solving to gather resources, you need to pay attention to your dungeon to see where defenses are needed. There is no taking your time with puzzle solving; heroes are constantly coming in waves with little time in between to prepare. I am constantly matching tiles, then looking up to see how my dungeon is doing. While other puzzle games may have a timer of some sort, I never got the tension from those games as I did here. Enemies that are defeated by your traps and/or monsters drop resources and items into the puzzle, increasing the frenzy even more. If the Heroes manage to make their way to your Tryant and defeat him, the dungeon closes up (literally) and it's time to start over.
I myself played a pre-alpha demo of Tomb of Tyrants, which already has great animations and art style. The attention to details from the character to the level designs are nicely done. and the game has a great art direction. The characters are drawn well with nice detail and are plentiful to boot. Although I should have been paying attention to my dungeon, I really enjoyed the Heroes making their way through the forest on their way to my Tyrant. It's these small details like these that I really enjoy in games.
As impressive as this game is right now, what is really surprising is how many people are working on this game: one. For a one man army, Jake Huhman does some impressive work.
The fact that we haven't seen a game like this is surprising. Tomb of Tyrants has all the makings of a surprise hit. It's got charm, and there is a great layer of depth underneath everything. ToT is easy to pick up and play for a few minutes or a few hours. While it is almost to an alpha, it plays very well and I did not experience any bugs nor crashes. Jake currently has a Kickstarter going where he is updating features that will be in the final version. However, there are less than 24 hours to go, so take a look at ToT and see if it's something you like. A pre-alpha demo is available for all to play, so feel free to go check it out for yourself!
a recipe for fun with the best ingredients from things you already loveRead More
a valuable resource for table-top gamers!Read More