So it’s that time of year again for indie game excitement in London. I love this event because you get to sometimes talk to the people involved with the game and its a very chilled expo, also the stickers and badges are a nice bonus.
It was a little busier than previous years but still nothing as crazy as the full EGX experience. You just stand behind the game and wait your turn while watching the current person play. In the case of some more popular games this was only ever 2 people deep and you could clearly see screen.
Most of the games i played were either not out yet or in early access and so your experience may vary when playing these later on.
A common theme amongst the indie games were that most were available on the Nintendo Switch. I myself do not own a switch yet but having most of the good indie games on this device is starting to sway me.
Games played – Click to jump to that section
- Negative Atmosphere (Dead Space type game)
- Flotsam (City Builder)
- GrowBot (Cute point and click adventure)
- Close to the Sun (Bioshock style horror adventure)
- Grip (Rollcage style racer)
- Phogs! (2 player puzzle)
- Nanotale Typing Chronicles (Isometric click adventure typing elements)
Negative Atmosphere (PC) – Sunscorched Studios
Looks and plays very much like Dead Space. It keeps the third person over the shoulder style of play with a creepy space station setting. In this demo i managed to find a gun and progress slightly. You are attacked from all angles by humanoid looking creatures in this demo, some move fast and some slow. I found the shooting to be slow slow and clunky, though this could be a deliberate ‘feature’ to add to the panic. I died many times but the AI seem to follow a set path and you can slowly learn the level and react better a second time round.
Overall looks nice, feels more back to the routes of Dead Space with some other sci-fi horror inspiration added. Need to try more to see if shooting mechanics are deliberate or just need tweaking.
Learn more about this game via their social media links
Flotsam (PC) – Pajama Llama
City builder/survival game builder from Belgium developers Pajama Llama. This game was one of my favourites for Rezzed 2019. I loved the style and the concept. The demo helped you along with a tutorial which is something a lot of the games at rezzed seemed to lack.
The world has been consumed by water due to global warming and you have to use the garbage and scrap around you to build and survive. The artwork is wonderful and zooming in lets you see some of the inventive design for items like the fishing chair or the floating bed.
You need to send out your inhabitants to gather more scrap so they can build the town out. Its the standard style of game play for these types of games, yet it has such a charm to it. It doesn’t over complicate the UI which is something that i find is common with most city building survival type games.
As of writing the game is not yet available but i believe it will be released this year and in early access form.
Check out more via their website
Growbot – Wabisabi Play (PC)
Made by a small studio in Brigton this absolutely beautiful looking point and click adventure caught my eye as soon as i walked by. You play as a little robot who as a glass dome at the top of her head, inside is a creature that looks a little like a brain who talks to you and reacts to objects you click. The demo had you searching for your captain who you find all battered with a smashed dome. You solve a little puzzle and try to fix your captain, then get told to go off and find out what happened.
If you like interesting artwork and point and click fantasy adventures then this is one to look out for.
Close to the Sun – Storm in a Teacup (PC)
Heavily influenced by Bioshock/Systemshock style of game. This horror adventure is set under the sea in the 1890s where the lead has received an invitation from her sister to visit Helios. You turn up to find the place in disseray with no one to be seen.
This is a first person adventure horror game using the Unreal engine. It looks gorgeous and i had a lot of fun playing this demo. I won’t spoil part of the story as the mystery is the games strong point. If you liked bioshock but wanted to do more of the exploration than fighting this game is for you.
I saw this game from across the room and thought to myself “that looks like Rollcage”. Well after talking to one of the demo guys they said that some of the devs from that PSOne classic collaborated with Caged Element to bring a new fun racing game to us all.
As in the first game you can go up walls and flip over, pick up weapons and sabotage other racers dreams of becoming first and listen to some great music.
This games out right now and its pretty cheap. Don’t be fooled by this as its a good fast paced racing game.
Phogs! – Bit Loom Games (Multi-Platform)
Very cute work together 2 player puzzle game. One person controls the red Phog and the other the blue Phog. You can either use one controller or two separate controllers, but you must only use one half of your controller or you end up moving both Phogs and confusing the hell out of your friend (sooo did not happen to us at all).
You can hold a button to make your Phog grab things, you can press another button to stretch your Phog enabling one Phog to hang onto something while the other reaches to get something. The aim of the game is to reach the end of the level solving puzzles.
Me and my friend (Vinjii – check out her blog if you like books) attempted to work our way through some levels. As with these “you control a limb” multiplayer games it takes a bit of getting used to. This one was fairly simple and after we fought on who was moving which Phog we managed to work out the puzzles and movement style.
The marketing for this game is fantastic. They had a hand puppet of the Phog’s and some lovely set pieces at the booth. It was definitely aiming towards families with younger kids, a father next to us at our station was having a hard time getting his two to leave.
Nanotale Typing Chronicles (PC)
As a touch typist i was quite excited by this game. It’s not quite typing of the dead but its a very cute looking adventure game. I love the artwork and myself and Vinjii gave this one a go.
You had to switch between movement mode and typing mode by pressing space. This caused a bit of panic when you could see a lot of enemies heading towards you but i think that’s part of the games charm.
Its a bit of a niche market and if you can’t look away from the keyboard and type it will be more of a challenge, but if you want something a little different with a different pace of game then check this one out.