Last night, in a crowded pub called “Dirty Dicks”, a dozen or so indie devs gathered for a festive pint, a grumble, and some impromptu awards. It was a smaller, quieter affair than last year, because I haven’t got much time on my hands at the moment. Hopefully we’ll return for a full-on shindig next year.
However, there has been some excellence in indie games this year, and they deserve a mention. These awards are important, because winners are chosen by Indie Dev Industry Peers.
Here are the winners of The Golden Teabags 2012 in full:
Best Use of a Danny Wallace in a Videogame: Thomas Was Alone
Best Game No-one Played: Derrick the Deathfin
Weirdest Idea: Curiosity
The A… The Awa… The Awa FUCK. The Awar FUCK. The Award f FUCK. The Awa… FUCK! The Award for FUCK. The A… The Award forthebestmobi FUCK. The Awards for the best mobile gam FUCK! Super Hexagon
The “White Hole” Award for Stealing Time: FTL
The “ewww” Award for Bestest Killings and Blood: Hotline Miami
Best Instance of Keeping a Dead Genre Alive: Resonance
Twitter Popular Vote: FTL
Jammiest Kickstarter: Simon Roth for Maia
Best Game: Thomas Was Alone
Nicest Man: Alex Tutty, for a record second year running.
Following last week’s post about how we’re handling trendy-looking 2D in Unity3D, I had a few requests for a bit more info on what we’re doing Editor-side.Development, News, The Swindle 12 Comments
“You can’t use Unity for 2D!”, they shout. “Unity uses all three dimensions you idiot, and is therefore useless if you’re only using two of them!”. Those are the words that were hammered impotently into keyboards the world over when I announced I was porting The Swindle from XNA to Unity.
That said, I’ve also had loads of people emailing asking how we’ve managed to make it look so tasty. Well, here’s your answer: we’re using two main Unity assets. 2DToolkit is in charge of all our core spritework, like buildings and tiles. We’re then also using SmoothMoves to animate all our characters. Beyond that, the man in charge of [clever tech] is Tim.
As an indie developer, I’m kind of fascinated by the concept of “necessity is the mother of invention”. We don’t have infinite time, money or resources, so you have to work with what you’ve got and find clever ways of crafting brilliance out of nothing. Where this works really well is when cutting corners really enhances the game. Necessity shoved you one way, which was heartbreaking, but it turned out it was for the best. In your FACE, necessity.
It hasn’t been the best few months, to be honest. Things went a bit pear-shaped. I’ve turned my back on a year and a half’s work, and I’ve reluctantly had to turn my back on XNA.
I don’t write reviews, it’s not my job. In fact, it’s the exact opposite of my job, if anything.
But I’m writing a review anyway because I’m a bit scared that Thomas Was Alone is going to slip through the net. Which would be a shame because, and hold on to your trousers as there’s a little bit of a shock coming: BAM, it’s the best indie game I’ve played all year.
So, the lengthily-titled ‘Ben There, Dan That! and Time Gentlemen, Please! Double Pack’ is the Steam Daily Sale today! That means you get two amazing 84-Metacritic-Rated games for 80% off.
< < click that Steam Logo to grab a copy now. Then come back and read why.
That picture above is the thing I’m working on next. It’s called The Swindle, and it’s amazing. Sadly, there’s stuff I’d love to do with The Swindle that simply won’t happen because the necessary programming skills are way beyond me, or they require a genuinely-talented artist.
I guess that’s part and parcel of being an indie – having to make the best possible game you can with what you’ve got. I’ve had to drop brillo ideas because they’d add a year or so to development, and similarly I’ve had to drop equally brillo ideas because I’m simply not dandy enough with The PhotoShop. These are the sorts of problems that can be easily solved by throwing money at other people, people more talented and better-looking than I.
A Steam Sale presents a lovely chance to help with all this.
If you’ve played the games and felt they were worth more than the pittance you paid, please consider gifting a copy to any online ‘friends’ you don’t secretly hate. If you’re one of the naughty people who torrented it, laughing: now’s your chance to make amends and help out with the next project. If you know people who might enjoy some comedy point-and-click games, post the link somewhere they’ll see it. Tweet it, Like it, StumbleUpon it or even +1 it if people are still doing that, are they?
Someone’s going to suggest I start a Kickstarter (I can’t, I’m not in the US) but regardless I don’t really fancy that sort of alpha funding. I’ll explain why in the comments.
Truth is, I’ve got enough cash saved up to make The Swindle amazing. I guess what this boils down to is that if this sale goes well I can afford some help to make it even amazingerer, so please help spread the word and get more copies sold.
Thank you :)
Well, an artist, technically. And “hiring” is probably a bit strong, too.
I’m looking for a talented 2D artist to help out with some of The Swindle’s artwork. It’ll be a relaxed, work-from-home, freelance gig you can fit in around your real job. We can discuss money once I’ve fallen in love with your art style and will pay through the nose to have you involved. Suffice it to say there is some money, but not loads because, hey, “indie development” right?
The Swindle is vector-based sprites, so the ability to use the pen tool in Photoshop is a plus. The ability to do kooky, bold, over-the-top, cartoon style art, and mimic the kind of look in the screens you see here would probably be handy.
Tell you what: if you’re a 2D artist and fancy helping out on an indie game for some money, ping a copy of your portfolio to email@example.com and I’ll get back to you. That’s how we do jobs round here.Development, HELP, Legally Dubious, News, Shilling, The Swindle 1 Comment