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Wraithkal’s Indie Update (Week 34 2012) My XBLIG Adventure


It’s time for another edition of Wraithkal’s Indie Update and this time we’re kicking off with a “brief” look at XBOX Live Indie Games, which in a way also serves as a glimpse into things to come right here on my site.

Every week sees several games released on XBLIG, which in theory is not a bad thing, but sadly the average quality is not exactly high and as such, hits tend to drown in a river of mediocre titles (avatar games, I’m looking at you!). Since its launch back in 2008, a lot (more than 2600!) of titles have been released on this platform, and I say “titles” instead of “games” because there are quite a few I would never label as games – if anything, they’re closer to being apps. Recording Studio is a perfect example of this, because I don’t think anyone would consider that to be a game; it does have co-op and multiplayer features, but that just means more than one person can record at once.. mislabeled, I say!

But enough about that, because I’m not about to let this turn into nothing but me complaining about negative parts of XBLIG, especially since there is a lot of good games to be found there and the majority only cost $1 (80 Microsoft points). Chances are you’re not just going to take my word for it, so here are some, but far from all, my personal favorites:

I MAED A GAM3 W1TH Z0MB1ES!!!1 (80 Microsoft points)
These days it seems like every other indie developer’s first game is a twin-stick shooter, but back in 2009  James Silva released what quickly turned into one of the first big hits on the platform; and just like everything today, it had.. zombies!

DLC Quest (80 Microsoft points)
From twin-stick shooters to a parody RPG with spot-on humor, a lot of DLC (duh!) and classic RPG elements. If you enjoy comedy and pop culture references, chances are you won’t go wrong with DLC Quest, even if it is a bit on the short side. On the other hand, it’s entertaining from start to finish and chances are you’ll enjoy at least 95% of it, so it’s hardly a bad way to spend $1.

A Pixel Escape (80 Microsoft points)
In this one, you play as a pixel in a monitor and your goal is simple: Escape! Unfortunately it’s not as simple as it sounds, as other pixels, some of which are actually quite deadly, stand between you and freedom. Not the most original plot, but the twist in this first person game being that you play as a pixel with special abilities and a lot of levels to plow through.. well, just try it already!

Those are just some of my hand-picked favorites though and there are far more good games than those , which brings me to the title of this article. I recently decided to take a look at what games were available on XBLIG. With 2600+ titles, I was in for quite the adventure, because I was determined on trying a lot of them, ignoring those that looked completely rubbish from their screenshots and description (like all those avatar games).

Am I crazy for undertaking such a mission? Probably, but if I manage to find even a single indie game that has seemingly gone unnoticed (or simply one I hadn’t heard about), it’ll have been worth it and with this many to pick from, odds are I’ll dig up plenty good games on my way through the madness that is XBOX Live Indie Games!

Ziggy Putts

Ziggy Putts (Win/Mac) released
Golf? Who would want to play something like tha.. wait, this is not another Tiger Woods wannabe: You actually play the part of a hedgehog named Ziggy who.. putts (drumroll)! It’s basically a golf/platform hybrid, running on the Unity engine, with the developer says more content and gameplay features will be added later. Ziggy Putts will set ya back $6.99 on Desura, where a demo is also available.

Captain Disaster demo release

Captain Disaster (Win/Mac) demo released
How about some sci-fi comedy with that point ‘n’ click adventure? Captain Disaster in Death Has A Million Stomping Boots is full of clichéd jokes and pop culture references with old-school visuals to boot! I’d like to say more about it, but since that’s not exactly easy without giving too much away.. I’d say give the demo a go, especially if want to try it before its scheduled late 2012/early 2013 release.

Stained demo release

Stained (Win) demo released
A physics-based side-scroller with plenty of platforming and evildoers to battle, Stained features a continually changing world and puzzles are more often than not solved by breaking objects, only to immediately transmute the shattered pieces into an object (or even a living being) that’ll benefit you in some way. I’d say that sounds unique enough to warrant a go and here’s the demo, which clocks in at 140mb and should last 25-30 minutes, giving you a nice little taste.

Time to wrap it up with what was posted on my site during the last week! Hope you enjoyed the read.

“Project Giana” Kickstarter Aims to Bring “Giana Sisters” Into Modern Times
Retro Platformer “Slick” Jumped From XBLIG to PC Today
Countdown to the Release of “They Bleed Pixels” Has Begun
Alpha Demo of Isometric Old-School RPG “Underrail” Released
From ZX Spectrum to XBLIG: “Jet Set Willy 360” Is Out
Help Some Great Indie Games Reach Steam: “Green Light Bundle” Is Live

If you have something indie game related you would like for me to write about, a game you’re working on, have released, want to recommend or just about anything else (indie related!), feel free to contact me by email at wraithkal@wraithkal.com, on Twitter (@Wraithkal) or.. simply leave a comment?