Thursday, 29 April 2010

SOAR WITH AMELIA EARHART IN A NEW CASUAL GAME EXPERIENCE!

AMELIA EARHART’S amazing life and numerous disappearance theories are now showcased in a new and interactive casual gaming experience.


TUSTIN, CA, (April 24, 2010) – Few mysteries have sparked such animated debate as that of the disappearance of classic aviator and American Hero – Amelia Earhart. Her adventurous life and tragic disappearance has been well documented and discussed through many mediums including major motion pictures, books, videos, forums, and classrooms around the world. Now Freeze Tag Games, a leading publisher of casual games for iPhone, PC, and Apple computers, has brought this captivating story and mystery to life as its debut title in a new game series called Unsolved Mystery Club™.


Freeze Tag has integrated historically accurate facts and authentically rendered artwork from actual events in Amelia’s life with fascinating revelations of the most widely accepted disappearance theories. The game features classic hidden object mingled with adventure gameplay within the context of Amelia’s life. In addition, mini-games and challenging puzzles such as a flight simulator serve as a tribute to one of the greatest aviators of all time.


"We've created the Unsolved Mystery Club series for all of those who enjoy investigating and postulating theories about unsolved mysteries around the world," said Craig Holland, Chief Creative Officer of Freeze Tag Games. "We all have ideas about what happened to Amelia Earhart, but our Unsolved Mystery Club: Amelia Earhart game is the first interactive experience that gives players enough information to formulate their own theories about her disappearance."


About the Unsolved Mystery Club™
Freeze Tag plans to use the Unsolved Mystery Club™ series to investigate actual unsolved mysteries that continue to confound the world today. Within an entirely new and digital interactive format, players are invited to become more intimately familiar with the mysteries and the secrets they hold. To learn more about Unsolved Mystery Club™ visit
www.UnsolvedMysteryClub.com.

About Freeze Tag Inc.
Freeze Tag is a leading developer and publisher of casual games including the number one hits Mystery Masterpiece™: The Moonstone, The Conjurer, and Can You See What I See? Curfuffle's Collectibles. Freeze Tag delivers best-of-class casual gaming experiences that are always "family friendly fun." Freeze Tag also leverages its numerous strategic partnerships within the industry to offer publishing services to new developers who are looking to benefit from Freeze Tag's experience and proven channels of distribution. For more information, visit the Freeze Tag Web site at:
www.FreezeTag.com

(PC Version out now, Mac Version coming soon)

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Tick, Tock...

... only two more days left to:


Coming Soon from Wadjet Eye Games... PuzzleBots

Coming in Fall of '09!

Life at Dr. Hugo’s Factory for Making Robots has never been crazier. Zander, a gifted but absent-minded inventor, has just finished a bright-eyed little robot he calls “Hero.” Hero is obedient, hard working, and eager-to-please. The perfect cover.

But what do robots do when their inventors aren't looking? When the coast is clear, Hero and his fellow robots take off on an epic journey full of curious animals, mischievous children and sleep-deprived scientists.

Will Zander win the affections of the pretty new scientist? Will the robots meet their untimely end before the holiday shopping season? And most importantly, has anyone else noticed something weird about the layout of the factory?

Sometimes, the big questions can only be answered by little robots.








Read more here.


View the trailer here!
__________________
Wadjet Eye Games
http://www.wadjeteyegames.com

Update - I believe this game is now available for pre-odred on the Wadjet Eye Games Website

Judging by the quality of Dave's previous games, this will definitely be one to look out for.

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Open Beta of Brunhilda and the Dark Crystal by Codeminion

Haven't had a chance to actualy try this game out but it's described as a "casual adventure / hidden object" game.  If you like this sort of game then you might want to try the open beta and give your suggestions - who knows, you might influence what the final game is like!

Personally I'm not much of a fan of hidden object games, but I have to admit that the graphics look beautiful.

 

Direct link to beta version (141MB)

Once you play the game there is an option to complete a survey and apply for inclusion in the closed beta tests of the full version. The Codeminion Team will appreciate any kind of honest feedback!

Thursday, 22 April 2010

Tidalis Beta Begins, Now Available For Preorder!

In the last few days, the Tidalis beta period has begun, and we're already in the process of making more updates to it. Things happen fast with Arcen Games! Our initial release of 0.400 ran into a couple of snags with our automated patching on Mac OSX, but considering we are brand new to that platform I was really pleased to see that was the biggest problem there.

As of our new 0.402 version, which is now out, those updater issues should be a thing of the past, and we've added updatable keyboard bindings, more levels and tutorials, improved trial mode functionality based on player feedback, and more! Lots more additions will be arriving nearly daily during the coming weeks.

You can download the demo of Tidalis for free, or the game is available for preorder through the main Arcen store, or through GamersGate. Many of our other partners will be coming online with the beta version of the game in the next month or so, or else will be waiting until the official release, which is currently expected to be in early July.

Not familiar with the game? Here's our spiel about it:

What Makes Tidalis Unique?

What happens when a notable indie strategy developer makes a puzzle game? We have no idea. Our first game happened to be a notable indie strategy game, but we’ve never considered ourselves tied to any particular genre. Truth is, we made Tidalis because we like puzzle games and we wanted to take our opportunity to innovate in that space.

The "streams" mechanic employed by Tidalis is what makes it so unique -- chain reactions with a dozen blocks are trivially easy to create. This makes the game really easy to get into, but also makes the creation of advanced multi-stage combos more challenging than in other block-based puzzlers. At an advanced level of play, it’s the difference between Chess and Checkers; with Tidalis in the hands of an expert, there are more variables to keep in mind as you set up truly elegant interactions.

But never fear: the easier difficulty levels are quite relaxed, and our Zen mode provides a particularly no-rush style of gameplay. The core mechanics are so simple that the two-year-old daughter of one of our staff enjoys playing along with him. And we suppose it goes without saying that many of our mothers are hooked on it, too.

Whether you’re just looking for a casual fun time, a deep and strategic puzzle experience, or a series of brain-bending puzzles, we’ve got you covered. About half of the five staff members working on this game are the hardcore puzzle types, and the other half have completely casual tastes. We’ve approached this with our usual attention to detail: the mechanics of the timing, chain merging, and other mechanics have been refined to a ridiculous degree to provide an optimal experience in all play styles.


View On Youtube

Relax with the classic brain-teaser, Zen Puzzle Garden from MyGameCompany

Zen Puzzle Garden is a game inspired by the beauty and simplicity of Japanese rock gardens. Help guide a little monk who must rake all of the sand in each garden without raking himself into a corner. The monk cannot walk over the sand he has already raked. Adding to the complexity of each puzzle are rocks, movable stone ornaments, and colored leaves that must be collected in sequence. The full version has 64 challenging puzzle gardens, and you can design and play your own gardens with the built-in garden designer!

Zen Puzzle Garden is available for Mac and Windows for $19.95 USD.

Download a free trial from:
http://www.mygamecompany.com/Products/Other/zenpuzzlegarden.htm

Indie Game Reviewers Wanted!

Ok, so it looks like readers of indiegamenews.com want to see reviews.  For that, I'll need reviewers...  so if you're interested, drop me an email, telling me what platform you can review games on, and if there are any genres in particular you'd like to get games for.  At this stage I mainly get sent PC and iPhone games (I have one iPhone reviewer already though I might need more; I review PC games myself but on my PC Gaming Blog, so I'd like to have someone who can review indie PC game releases here too).

Here's the deal; if I get sent review copies, I'll send them to the appropriate person.  I can't offer payment but you will get free games and I'm not asking for exclusivity - you'll be free to post your review on your own blog / other sites whatever (though a link back to the original review on this site would be appreciated).    Please note that some review copies are time-limited and will be deactivated after the review is written (though in my own personal experience, this has never actually happened). 

What I'm looking for is people who can provide an honest, objective review that is well written and doesn't contain offensive language.  I can't guarrantee what games I might be sent review copies for or what system; however as indiegamenews.com becomes more established, I fully expect more developers to contact me asking for reviews.  If you want to also review games here that you've been sent from another source / you've bought then that's great, but it's completely optional.


I've updated the Contact Us page to reflect this new approach to review copies.



Check the comments on this post for updates on whether people who can review indie games on particular systems are urgently needed.

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

"Amazing Pyramids" released for PC

Solve intricate word puzzles and unravel the secrets of an ancient city! Lead a group of scientists through addicting mini-games and jumbled letters in the Saharan desert! Earn bonuses for quick and clever solutions!

Features:
  Engaging storyline spanning 4 exotic locations
  16 thematic levels and tons of exciting mini-games
  2 game modes: Adventure and Classic
  Unique dictionary containing over 18,000 words
  Original Egyptian music and thematic sound effects
  Worldwide high scores table

http://www.wst.com.ua/amazingpyramids/

New Digital Distributor for Indie Games

Our company is launching a new state-of-the-art digital distribution and content management platform. mygameIQ allows Developers to maximize their game via a broader reach, better messaging, and a clear monetization path. We are especially interested in adding Independent Game Developers to highlight the incredible work being done in the field.

With our successful history with America’s Army, we have been able to generate revenue through the Honor scoring system and our dedicated Honor Providers made up of the leading server providers around the world.

We are looking to partner with developers to add games to our network. I’ve included some features below and you can also reference our site www.pr-sol.com.

Just a snapshot of our network:
Big Download/AOL
7.2M daily unique visitors and 40M impressions to AOL Game network including:
• Game sites: Big Download, Games.com, GameDaily, Joystiq, WoW.com
• Weblogs sites: Engadget, TUAW, Download Squad, Cinematical, TV Squad
• AOL core sites: AOL.com front page, AIM Today/AIM Zones

America’s Army 2 & 3
Most successful Serious Game and Top 10 game for 7 years. Free To Play Game.
• 12M registered users
• 240M hours of gameplay
• 6,000 new registrations per day
• Demos include:
• 13-55
• Male and Female

IGG
Leading MMORPG Publisher, pioneering Free To Play with Microtransactions arena.
• 18 MMORPG games
• 15M registered users
• 20,000 new registrations per day
• Demos for various games:
• Males 15-35
• Females 10-25

Please contact me via the forum or directly if you are interested in being part of our network.

Thanks,

Rob
rob@pr-sol.com

Features:
Secret Sauce – What makes us different?
• Free to Developer – Revenue Sharing Agreement
• Contained Environment to maximize engagement
• Channels, including a Free to Play Channel presented by Big Download (AOL)
• Downloadable content and Browser Based Games
• Leverage Backend system
o Authentication - Establish unique identity and profile persistence
o Real-time State - Maintain current active state of an environment with incremental snapshots
o Statistics Tracking System - Associate in-game events with statistical summaries
o Attribute Tracking System - Associate outcomes to a new set of attributes
o Content Delivery System - Use ANY data set to deliver individualized content
o Inflection - Engine to identify patterns and formulate predictions
o Visual IQ - Data modeling and visualization tool
• mygameIQ.com Portal to interact with other gamers
• Pragmatic Digital Distribution Network
Increased Revenues
• Integration of the Pragmatic Ad Network, putting revenue into the hands of the Developers – Making Money off YOUR game
• Advertising “around” the game that enhances the user experience and provides measurable engagement to a core demographic desired by leading advertisers.
• Turn trials into customers with better conversion rates.
• Instant community promoting your game and providing secondary sources of revenue such as microtransactions.
• Digital distribution allows for reduction in distribution costs and elimination of costly fixed media (DVD) production.
Play – Download and Launch
• By employing the Pragmatic Digital Distribution Network of leading download content providers around the world, we are able to provide high-bandwidth solutions to enhance the user experience and get the game to them faster.
• Auto-Patching ability allows for games to be updated or patched more frequently, thus adding value to your community and keeping your game fresh and dynamic.
• Download — Direct and Secure downloads via Pragmatic’s fully encrypted proprietary technology
• Full Authentication, eCommerce and DRM Solution suite allows for revenue to be generated via the purchase of the game, while protecting the game's assets from unlicensed distribution.
• Full analytics via Pragmatic's visual data mining tools. Ability to stream content, video, audio, other messaging. Pragmatic technology allows for customization of messages to individuals and for full data capture and reporting.
• Integration of Leverage technology provides Matchmaking, Leaderboards, Statistics, Buddy Lists, Communications, and other tools to enhance the users experience.

2nd Public Beta of 2D Game Engine "PyroGeine" Released

PyroGine Development is happy to release the 2nd public beta release of PyroGine Game Engine. It's an advanced 2D game engine for PC's running Microsoft Windows and uses Direct3D for hardware accelerated rendering. It's robust, designed for easy use and suitable for making all types of 2D games and other graphic simulations.

It consists of a high-level object oriented game application framework with a plethora of classes and routines to allow you to rapidly and efficiently develop your graphics simulations. There is support for surfaces, textures, sprites, audio, streams, archives, configuration files, render targets, swap chains, databases and much more.

Changelog:
  • Added API support for standard C/C++ compilers.
  • Added full OOP support for C++ Builder 2010.
  • TPGObject.CreateFromObj was referenced in PGDatabase but the method was not declared and implemented.

Press Release - Barney In Chocoland HD released for iPad

Test your arcade skills with Barney In Chocoland HD for iPad!

Rapid Turtle Games is pleased to announce that Barney In Chocoland HD, a simple, yet fun pick up and play arcade game is now available for the iPad!

What could be better than Barney In Chocoland on your iPhone?

In this HD version, all the graphics have been updated to higher resolutions specifically for the iPad. Additionally, the HD version is now OpenFeint enabled. Integrating OpenFeint now allows players to compete in “global leader boards.”

About the game:

Barney's dream has finally come true! He is in Chocoland, and he can get as much chocolates as he can collect. But the inhabitant of Chocoland, Coco, might not like this idea at all! Help Barney to collect as much chocolates as he can, and don't let Coco to steal any from him. It's a simple plot of the game, but it is made with gameplay as the most important factor in mind.

The player is controlling Barney. Chocolates are falling down, and they need to catch and insert them into the barrels. When the player misses a chocolate, it is eaten by Coco. 3 misses and the game ends. There are power-ups, which will give some additional bonuses like clearing a miss, boosting speed etc.

The game is available for iPad for $2.99.

Gameplay Trailer:






Screenshots:


Press Release - Trickstar Games acquires Sector3 Games

Melbourne, Australia (Tuesday, 20th April 2010) - Australian based games development studio Trickstar Games has acquired the casual game developer Sector3 Games. Sector 3 will assist Trickstar Games to broaden its business model into the lucrative casual and online games market.

"With this strategic acquisition we are bringing an extremely talented new game studio into the Trickstar Games family. We have aggressive plans to expand our social gaming footprint and the addition of Sector3 and its established games will significantly expand Trickstar’s capabilities and product portfolio this year." said Tony Parkes, Studio Head.

Sector3 Games was established in January 2007, as an Indie Games Division of Sector3 Pty Ltd, and shipped its first game title, TURRET WARS, for both OSX and Windows in April 2007. Since then Sector3 has released numerous games on Mac, PC, iPhone and Online (including Facebook and other social gaming websites). As part of this new alliance “StuntMANIA”, Sector3’s most prominent title is currently poised for release on specific console platforms. "I am very excited to be joining a company that shares my philosophy and vision for casual gaming and I am looking forward to creating great games together,” said Seon Rozenblum, founder of Sector3.

About Trickstar Games
Trickstar Games (www.trickstargames.com) is a relatively new Melbourne, Australia based studio formed in November 2009. Trickstar are currently developing the recently announced “International Cricket 2010” for Codemasters on Sony’s PlayStation 3 & Microsoft’s Xbox 360 and a yet to be announced game title for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PC. Contact: info@trickstargames.com

About Sector3 Games

Sector3 (www.sector3.com.au) is a leading Australian casual games developer, specialising in iPhone, Mac, PC & online game. Since 2007 Sector3 Games has successfully produced a vast range of games for all leading online and casual platforms.
Contact: info@sector3.com.au

Thursday, 15 April 2010

Indie Game Reviews

I've recently posted some more reviews of indie games over at my PC Gaming Blog:

DHG Games announce the release of Motocross Challenge

*** LIMITED LAUNCH-TIME OFFER! SAVE OVER 60% ***




(I'm unsure how long the spacial offer price will be valid for)

Motocross Challenge™ is an amazing Motocross racing game where you race through gorgeous scenic locations, handle high-flying jumps and amaze the crowds with death defying tricks.


__________4 Game Modes__________

__Beat The Clock __
Are you fast enough to handle this race? Speed through the track as fast as possible, from checkpoint to checkpoint, to beat the time limits.


__The World Tour __
Can you handle the heat of racing 3 other opponents? This is the "Battle Royal" of Motocross Challenge, it's everyone for itself!


__Trick Attack __
It's not about the race here; it's about style, jumps and stunts. You will be thrown into a free-style trick session where it's all about big scores and high flying action.

__VS Friends __
It's time to see whose the best in this duel mode. Play againts your friends for bragging rights.


__________Game key features__________


- 8 Motocross Bikes
- 8 Tricks execute
- 10 Tracks to unlock through 30 Racing Events
- VS Friend Mode
- Highscores and Leaderboards







Don't forget to vote!

No, not the general elections - the poll on the right-hand side of this blog!


Do you want to see reviews here?  The general consensus so far seems to be yes...


Have your say as to how IndieGameNews develops!

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Social Media Site Newgrounds Creates Opportunity For Indie Game Developer ClickShake Games

Newgrounds.com Power of Three event created the opportunity indie game developers Jay Ziebarth and Steve Castro needed to find each other and form the new company ClickShakeGames.com.

Columbus, OH, April 13, 2010 – Last summer, Newgrounds.com launched the Power of Three event, encouraging independent programmers, artists and musicians to team up and use their combined talents to create an original online game using Adobe Flash. The goal was to support the Child’s Play charity and to form teams of skilled developers who might stay together even after the event and continue contributing higher quality games to the Flash gaming community. As of January 2010, their goal was met when one of the resulting teams launched their own website ClickShakeGames.com and released several more games since then.

Newgrounds.com is an online community website featuring user-created movies and games long before “Web 2.0” was a buzzword. Its creator Tom Fulp himself participated in a collaboration with artist Dan Paladin through the site and this partnership turned into The Behemoth, a successful console game studio responsible for the hit Xbox 360 title Castle Crashers. Fulp’s announcement of the event included enticements to try to match this level of success, which generated a good amount of interest from the community.

The Power of Three event yielded several games, including IGN’s Best Free-To-Play PC Game of 2009, Time Fcuk. Among the entries was Paradox Embrace, a puzzle platformer game made by Steve Castro and Jay Ziebarth with music by Caulder Bradford. After the game’s release, Castro and Ziebarth went on to form ClickShake Games and develop 2 new games for Comedy Central, including an adventure game for their new animated series Ugly Americans.

Ziebarth, better known as Zeebarf, had independently created popular online game series The Several Journeys of Reemus, A Small Favor and The Visitor. His primary experience is in animation, but working independently meant he had to work with various programmers or even program the games himself. Ziebarth says having a partnership with programmer Steve Castro “frees you up to concentrate on your area of expertise instead of being a jack of all trades. It takes the pressure off in a lot of ways and strengthens the project all around.” This sentiment was echoed by Castro, who had been an independent game developer working with various artists or animating himself.

Currently ClickShake is developing a two part simultaneous adventure game release for The Several Journeys of Reemus characters. Chapter 4 of the Several Journeys continues the story line and will be launched first to the registered members of their website and then later to sites like Newgrounds and Kongregate.com. The second game will be called The Ballads of Reemus: When the Bed Bites, the first premium game in the series featuring voice acting for the adventuring duo. Ballads will be a stand-alone adventure prior to the events of the earlier Several Journeys chapters. This ambitious dual game release might not have been possible if not for the collaboration catalyzed by Newgrounds’ Power of Three event.

Social sites with user-created content such as Newgrounds are an important online resource for independent developers like ClickShake, providing opportunities to learn, practice and get feedback and exposure on their work. Tom Fulp runs multiple annual collaboration events throughout the year that developers from around the world are encouraged to participate in.

For more information, contact Steve Castro at contact (at) clickshakegames.com

About ClickShakeGames.com:ClickShake is an independent game development company focused on hand-drawn adventure, puzzle and platform games with colorful characters and imaginative story lines. It is run by Jay Ziebarth from Ontario and Steve Castro from Ohio. Both have developed Flash games and movies since around 2000. Play their games online at http://www.ClickShakeGames.com.

References:

Alien Dominion: The Acronian Encounter - press release

In this space shooter the player is in a role of a turret gunner/shooter serving on a deep space exploration mission. Encountering an alien race while scanning for mineral rich asteroids in the region, the conqueror race starts it’s attack right at the beginning. As it later turns out, the region is not dense with minerals – it is rich with hostile vessels…

Featuring beautiful graphics, explosively fast game-play and a lot of hours of fun while fighting through hordes of alien fighters, drones and mother-ships through space to ultimately reach Earth and inform the fleet of the impending attack!

Can you survive all of the 6 worlds of total annihilation and destruction, over 1000 alien fighters and drones, with a couple of mother-ships launching wings like crazy?

Detailed description
There are 2 gun groups attached to the ship: upper and lower. As the player drags the mouse the cannon groups are switched to cover all the space around the ship. Each level has it’s story, but basically you need to take down all/most of the targets that are attacking and thus to survive.
The levels last for 10 minutes each and are finished once the player reaches that time point – and is alive. The last level lasts a bit longer (15 minutes).

After the level completion there is a shop with various utilities and armaments. E.g. better guns, shields, time-warp (slowdown), gun enhancements etc. Money(crystals) is gained by destroying alien ships – the better shooter you are more crystals for use in the shop.

At least 70 minutes are required to finish this game – if you survive all the levels in a raw, that is. So the game itself can provide hours and hours of quality audio/visual/gaming experience. The game length is similar as in popular top-down shooter games.

Are you up to the challenge space warrior?

Screenshots:



Game Trailer:




Game Features:
• Fastest and most intense 3d space shooter you have ever seen – feel free to compare it to other games!
• The ship is driven by the pilot, and you defend with 2 turrets (upper and lower) covering all the space around the vessel (this is a 3d space “rail” shooter)
• Unique feel of intense battle and adrenalin pumping through your veins
• 6 blood pounding missions with great heavy metal tracks while shooting down the invading force, with an option of muting the music if you rather prefer silence or playing some custom tunes on your favorite player in the background
• Hours and hours of fun play before you successfully survive the last world and inform humanity about the Acronians – rewarded by a neat animation at the end
• Over one hour of constant action needed to finish the game (if you survive all the levels in a row, that is…)
• 4 levels of difficulty (Rookie, Normal, Ace and Abnormal)
• Incredible space environments and planets (you can’t land, that’s a decoration only, but very detailed I should add). Indie or casual games usually do not have that.
• Flexible graphics settings to meet your hardware – indie or casual games usually do not have this
• 3d explosions with debris falling of everything you shoot at, plus beautiful particle effects
• Shop available at the end of each level: weapon, add-ons, shields, utilities, repair-bots… everything to make you happy.
• Intro and game complete cut-scenes
• Listen to in game chat of pilot, gunner and the ship’s AI to find out what happened meanwhile…

About Black Fire Games

Black Fire Games is dedicated to bringing you the best indie games of tomorrow today.
Founded summer 2009, the company started developing our first commercial title. Various efforts and tasks were complete for as a 3rd party game developer and the previous accumulated experience led to a first in-house developed PC computer game using modern graphics, sound and game-play. We play hard – and work even harder to bring maximum enjoyment to the player while we also have fun creating products for the market.

Links:
Web-site: http://www.blackfiregames.com
Direct download link
Direct buy link

Monday, 12 April 2010

Introducing Galactic Gaming Guild and their first game, Full Ace Tennis

GALACTIC GAMING GUILD
We have chosen this name to show a commitment to openness, and also a humorous dimension in its excessiveness. We are two creative video game professionals, nostalgic for a time when the development of video games was more like craft.  We hope to bring other same spirited individuals to join the team.


INDEPENDENT
It would have been hard to convince a publisher to fund a tennis simulation.  Aside from that, we want to remain in control of our choices. Besides, we are primarily focusing on an enlightened public which is relatively far from the trendy "casual gamer".   This basis will be retained and GALACTIC GAMING GUILD shall remain independent in his future productions (Sports, Adventure ...)


A TENNIS SIMULATOR, WHY, HOW ?
Because of our fondness for tennis, because it is consistent with the size of our business, and we believe we can bring something new to the genre.  First of all, the game expects the player to choose side in order to hit a backhand or forehand.  This way, he may decide to turn around his backhand as he pleases, without seeing the character changing his orientation at the last moment.


In Full Ace, you control a professional tennis player with his own abilities.  This means that no matter how well you master the gameplay, there is no way you can hit strong shots on the lines all the time.
Skillful tennis is founded on reasoned risk-taking based on technical capabilities, and we want the same thing in Full Ace.  Ball dynamics are based on scientific studies and demonstrate real life speed and spin. Ball spin impacts trajectories and rebounds realistically.  Ball trajectory is updated 550 times per second. Resulting shots are "all different" and realistic (no preprocessing), thus point configurations are potentially endless in their variety. It is therefore all the more important to properly read trajectory and position accordingly.



CUSTOMIZATION & TRADE ?
Customization is a fundamental element of Full Ace.  In Full Ace, the player should be able to customize everything that is possible and we are moving in this direction, as customization options will multiply rapidly.  "Character Editor" allows modifying all players in the database and creating as many additional ones as you want.  We will extend these opportunities to allow editing textures, thus giving players a chance to replicate real players' latest equipment, or even include a photo of their own face.
We will soon extend the editor to allow changing stadiums and tournaments names, and probably other factors.  As for suggestions, the community, although just coming into blossom, is already very active.

VISUAL REALISM vs TENNIS REALISM ?
Full Ace emphasizes on mechanical movements, inertia and shot realism.  For example, the player can hit the ball while running. The animations shall transition smoothly, whatever the circumstances.  We had to reach a compromise for that first version, and the downside is a somewhat stiffness of characters in action.  Even if tennis realism stands as our priority in Full Ace, we do care about its visual appearance, and still explore many ways to improve it.



MULTIPLAYER & NETWORK?
A split-screen multiplayer mode is already available, but online play has been set aside until commercial release.  It is now a priority and we would like to provide a full online tour as well as official rankings, eventually.  From the outset we intend to offer regular free upgrades to all registered players, this way they will have access to online play as well as all the other improvements when those become available over the months.


http://www.fullacetennis.com/
Demo download

Saturday, 10 April 2010

Indie Game Reviews - Poll

I don't know whether people would like to see game reviews on this site or not... let me know by voting!  The poll's near the top-right of the site.  I won't post any of my own reviews here, but I'm happy to post user reviews if that's what people want to see.

Friday, 9 April 2010

New Indie Game Competition for PC Strategy Game Fans!

Arcen Games have kindly sponsored this competition, with five copies of their award-winning strategy game AI War along with the expansion pack The Zenith Remnant up for grabs.  If you're a strategy game fan, these are definitely going to keep you happy for a long time.  All you'll need to do is visit the relevant page below, download the game and expansion pack, and put in the registration code I send you.

The Competition

Since the prize is a strategy game, to enter email me the most bizarre strategy game scenario you can think of (but it would still have to be possible to make into a playable game).  The senders of the five ideas I like the most will be judged as winners.  (My decision is final and I will enter into no correspondance about why I didn't select your entry, should you not be a winner.)

The winning suggestions will be posted here on indiegamenews.com, and you never know - someone might even turn them into indie games one day!

Please email me your suggestions with the subject line "AI War Competition".  This competition will run until 30th April 2010.  (This may be extended if fewer than five worthy winners are found.)


Related links:

Arcen Software's Official Website
AI War: Fleet Command
The Zenith Remnant Expansion Pack
CaptainD's Review of AI War: Fleet Command


About AI War:

- Space-based RTS, single player or up to 8 player co-op.
- Powerful emergent AI that retreats, probes defenses, and surprises even veterans with intelligent tactics.
- 30,000+ ships at a time on 10-120 simultaneous planetary battlefields.
- Different Every Time: 16 billion procedural maps, each with specific units. - A focus on deep strategy with nearly no micromanagement.

About The Zenith Remnant:

* 122 new ships, including:
   * 14 new ship classes with a variety of abilities.
   * 7 massive capturable "Golem" ships.
   * Dozens of other new capturables, including “experimental” ships.
* 12 new AI Types.
* 4 Zenith alien minor factions (NPCs).
* Over 40 minutes of new in-game music tracks.
* Several new map styles.
* Several new AI behaviors and many related special AI weapons.

COMPETITION NOW CLOSED

Scalene Software Releases Concentrix for Xbox Live Indie Games

Ottawa, Ontario -- April 1, 2010 -- Scalene Software is pleased to announce the release of its first console title, Concentrix, for Xbox Live Indie Games.

Concentrix is a unique action puzzle game played on a circular game board. Blocks fall outward from the center toward the perimeter of the playing area. Players can manipulate the falling shapes by moving or rotating them. The game challenges players because matching some blocks may block other matches.

The eight play modes feature varied game mechanics. Different shapes may fall, such as simple groups of blocks or more challenging ring-like shapes. The player may be striving to match color or position. Each mode plays differently and is a unique experience.

Concentrix features high quality graphics and an original soundtrack composed entirely on the Alesis Micron analog modeling digital synthesizer. The soundtrack and wallpapers are available as free downloads from Scalene Software's web site.

Concentrix is available now on Xbox Live Indie Games for 240 MS Points ($3.00 / 2,79€ / £2.04).

Features:
- 8 unique game play modes featuring varied mechanics
- 12 original music tracks by Fatal Orbit
- Screensaver mode showcasing beautiful graphics
- Trial version available

Xbox Live Marketplace:
http://marketplace.xbox.com/en-US/games/media/66acd000-77fe-1000-9115-d8025855049b

 
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About Scalene Software:


Scalene Software is an independent game developer located in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

For more information, please visit www.scalenesoftware.com