Wraithkal: The Indie Gaming Corner
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Weekly Indie Update (Week 3 of 2012)

Welcome one and all! It’s sunday, which means another week has ended, so the time has come for me to summarize its events for everyone to read.Quite a week too, which among other things saw the release of Dustforce, the precision platformer with a cleaning twist, but more about that later. I have a few things I’d like to discuss first, including a few 2D games that got patched in the past week and a yet-to-be-released PC game, but before all that it’s time for more news on something that the regular readers of my WIU will recognize:
The Legend of Grimrock blog saw another update! Don’t start celebrating yet though, as they still don’t have a release date, but I’ll take any news over radio silence.

Legend of Grimrock
This time it’s not a bullet point post, unlike the first one they put up this year. Not that there’s anything bad with using bullet points, but you can only fit so much detail that way and the new stuff this week deserve more than simple descriptions. Oh hang on.. since they didn’t use bullet points, I’m going to! Here’s what’s new this week over at Almost Human Games (original post):

  • Auto map details
  • Dungeon props
  • Key art aka. the “box art” shown on digital distribution sites
  • AI improvemends
  • General improvements and tweaks

A few 2D updates
Next up we have a few 2D games that saw sizeable updates this week and the first one is A Valley Without Wind. I haven’t played this one much yet, so I’m gonna recommend checking out the second beta trailer instead. The most recent patch adds two entirely new enemies, wraps up GUI tweaking (for now) and lets you skip the intro mission, which is definitely a good thing. Not many enjoy playing a tutorial more than once after all! If you feel like sampling the goods prior to purchase – especially since it’s still in beta stage – a trial version is available, with one simple limitation: Civilization Level cannot go above 6. Keep in mind that it’s 50% off during early beta however, which puts it at $9.99 currently, should you want to experience the full game before Arcen Games brings it out of beta.

Next up we have Epic Inventor. The developer’s description of the game does make it sound a lot like Terraria, while at the same time being quite a different beast. They share similarities, but a lot is also different enough for both games to easily co-exist. Just like Minecraft and Terraria (apart from the obvious 2D/3D difference), so I’m not even going to touch the “which is better” discussion, as I play and enjoy all three, even if my attempt at a hardcore character in Terraria, wasn’t my proudest moment in gaming..
So.. anyway, the update brings new stuff to the table, including two new armor sets, a few gameplay tweaks and some always useful bug fixes. Oh and it’s free! No pricetag and certainly no DRM either. Download, extract, enjoy.

It seems the small indie developer, Death Knell Games, aims to resurrect a time game developers have seemingly abandoned, with this one:

The game is a brand new entry into the forgotten world of old school, third person, survival-horror, with focus on puzzle solving and storytelling over intense action.

Admit it: The first thing that pops into your head after reading that quote is Resident Evil, but so what? Something doesn’t have to be all original and new, for it to be great. Take a look at Modern Warfare 3 for exampl.. oh wait, I did say “great”, didn’t I? Well.. Nevermind then.
Back to Thanatophobia (try saying that ten times in a row), an announcement video was released back in november, but keep in mind that what’s shown are likely to change as development progresses and it seems a demo is scheduled for release soon, so that’ll hopefully reveal more than the almost two month old video did.
A short “origin story” on both Death Knell Games and Thanatophobia can be found here.

If you’re a fan of Super Meat Boy, chances are you will find a lot to like here too, as both share quite a few similarities, including a focus on speed-runs and precision platforming, combined with a nice replay feature. With that in mind, however, Dustforce still manages to be quite a unique experience. Taken from the game’s Steam page – which is the only place it can (currently?) be purchased:

  • Over 50 levels varying in difficulty from elegant exploration levels to intense challenges for hardcore players.
  • Compete on the online leaderboard and instantly watch replays of every players’ best attempts.
  • Play against your friends with local multiplayer matches.
  • Roam through a myriad of beautiful environments accompanied by an original soundtrack.

If you’re not yet convinced, maybe reading one of the many reviews of it in the lists below will help? Watching TotalBiscuit’s quite entertaining WTF Is…: Dustforce ? video might help. At the very least, it’ll provide 22 minutes of entertainment!

But enough Dustforce promotion, it’s time to wrap this one up with the lists (woohoo! time for more bullet points) and launch this post into the wilderness that is the Internet.