G’day all you beautiful gamers out there! I hope you’re getting your trigger fingers ready for the fast approaching PAXEast, running from April 22 to the 24th. With this auspicious event comes the exciting Indie Megabooth, a collection of the most innovative, most anticipated games in development by both the known and unknowns of the Independent Videogame Community. For those new to the scene, the Indie Megabooth was created for PAXEast 2012 as a means for the small Studios and Developers to compete with the AAA companies that dominate the convention floor. From their humble beginnings of 17 small studios in attendance to it’s current iteration of 70+, the Indie Megabooth dominates the convention floor and boasts the largest booth at PAX. Not only do they have a slew of quirky and colorful games, they also promote the best in small run boardgames, for those who prefer paper and plastic to 1s and 0s.
Check out their PAXEast 2016 trailer here for a small peek at the kinds of games they’re going to be showcasing:
For those hungry for more, I’ve combed through the studios in their roster and have picked out some gems to highlight the types of things you can expect to stand in line to try. For a look at all the games in attendance, check out the full listing on the IMB page.
Burly Men at Sea
From the IMB Page: Burly Men at Sea is a folktale about a trio of large, bearded fishermen who step away from the ordinary to seek adventure. Set in early 20th-century Scandinavia, the game’s story branches through discovery in a series of encounters with creatures from folklore. You play as storyteller and wayfinder, shaping the narrative around the characters through interaction with their environment.
Immediate impressions: Brain & Brain is a husband-wife indie dev team that has put forth a heavily narrative driven adventure with simplistic, but striking, visuals. It seems to be almost an interactive storybook about three bushy bearded brothers setting forth on their own ocean Odyssey. I’m excited to play the story in this one, proving that complex design isn’t always necessary for a fun game.
Battle Chef Brigade
From the IMB Page: “Fantasy Iron Chef” Enough said? Nope! Battle Chef Brigade features fantasy chefs, including Orcs, Elves, and Humans, who need to hunt dangerous monsters for ingredients. With those ingredients, before the critical eye of the judges, the chefs create culinary masterpieces in an intense tournament. Battle Chef Brigade pairs one part combo-based action hunting and one part puzzle-based cooking, all as the round clock ticks down.
Immediate Impressions: Three game professionals got together and started Trinket Studios. This is their second title release and WHOA it’s a doozie. Immediately the art direction sucks you in with a heavily anime-influenced style reminiscent of the movie, The Girl Who Jumped Through Time. It’s a cross between Iron Chef, and the Wii title Muramasa, where you spend half your time in a kitchen battling for cooking supremacy and the other half out in the wilds battling monsters for their meat and collecting ingredients for your culinary masterpiece, whereupon you create a dish fit enough to be scored by three hard looking judges. Chairman Kaga would be proud.
From the IMB Page: Developed by Clifftop Games, a one-man studio based in Stockholm, and published by Raw Fury, Kathy Rain tells the compelling story of a strong-willed college girl with a knack for detective work and a Harley who returns to her hometown after being gone since childhood. Set in the 90’s, Kathy starts investigating a local mystery and the legacy of her recently deceased grandfather.
As she follows a trail of clues he left behind, questions emerge… What was Joseph Rain really looking for that night all those years ago? What turned him into a mere shell of a man, confined to a wheelchair? What secret did a suicidal young artist take with her to the grave, and why are so many people in Conwell Springs going mad? The truth is dark and sinister…
Immediate Impressions: A soon-to-be released project from Raw Fury Games, a small international publishing house that released Kingdom unto the world (and angered spouses because their SOs were busy protecting their citizens from blood-mooned trolls instead of cleaning the dang bathroom). Kathy Rain is a point-and-click RPG with some really slick sound design and beautifully detailed pixel-art. Rather than being combat heavy, it looks to follow a mysterious narrative, and I look forward to losing great swaths of my life to it very soon!
From the IMB Page: Below is a procedural terrarium filled with life, mystery and death.
Explore. Survive. Discover.
Immediate Impressions: This one is from Capybara Games in my hometown of Toronto Ontario, the makers of Super Time Force and the studio with it’s hands deep in the creation of Sword and Sworcery. The preview (because the game is still in production) is light on the actual mechanics, but with really a really great sounding soundtrack (from Jim Guthrie who also worked on Sword and Sworcery) and the studio’s history of putting out some really solid material, I’m willing to put my faith in their next big project. It looks like you descend into the undergrounds of the world to an ever-changing maze of puzzles and combat. I’m in.
The Flame in the Flood
From the IMB Page: A rogue-lite river journey through the backwaters of a forgotten post-societal America. Travel by foot and by raft down a procedurally-generated river as you scrounge for resources, craft tools, remedy afflictions, evade the vicious wildlife, and most importantly, stay ahead of the coming rains.
Immediate Impressions: Avoidance procedures of a racing game? Check. Instant terror feelings with their monster design? Check. Addictive collection mechanics? Check. This is on top of some GORGEOUS design and animation. This new project from a slew of Bioshock alums looks like an apocalyptic survival on a fast moving river with your faithful companion. You have to manage the state of your character with conditions like being Cold, Drenched, Feverous with remedies from the various docking stations along your way, all while avoiding being ripped to shreds by the local wildlife.
Remember, this is only a small selection of what will be available in Boston at the end of the month. As we continue our new series of Indie Game Roundup coverage on GeeklyInc., we’ll dive further into many of the games available through the IMB and the vastness of the internet. We will post highlights and inside scoops from the PAXEast floors as your intrepid Geekly reporters maneuver through the throngs of fans, interview developers and production studios, hold contests for steam keys, and keep you up to the date with best in Indie Games as they are announced!