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2005 Independent Games Festival (IGF) Overview/Preview

In a joint work with DIY Games, Game Tunnel presents our 2005 IGF intro article.  The IGF is a yearly event that exists to reward indie games for their innovation.  The rewards in this case include both monetary prizes and a lot of buzz/pr.  Game Tunnel has covered in years past (2003 & 2004) increasing its coverage each year.  In 2005 we intend to increase that coverage even further and are kicking that coverage off with a joint article with our friends at DIY Games  to preview all 81 games entered into the IGF this year!  Each site will have one half of the article, so after you are done reading here, make sure that you pick up the rest of the games there!

Aerial Antics

Developer: Leadfoot Productions Development Time: ~6 Months
Release: January 2004 Budget: < $100
Category: Open (>15MB)  

As a spiritual successor to a portion of the Pilotwings game, Aerial Antics provides players the opportunity to fly around interesting and quite varied landscapes with a jet pack.  The game provides the challenge of hoops to fly through, pads to land on, not to mention the giant balls that you have to kick through rings on specific levels and the joy of having bombs to drop.  While working on making pinpoint landings you also have to keep a careful look at your fuel as running out leads to the not-so-pleasant scenarios of your character dropping to the ground.  The real highlight here is the cartoon-y graphics, which are well above average and make good use of Garage Games Torque engine.  The only difficulties I ran into with the game come when you try to play with anything other than an analog stick.  However the controls offer a wide variety of options that should make this game accessible to just about anyone.

"For those who loved Pilotwings, and for those who never got a chance to play it, I highly recommend checking out Aerial Antics!"

Alien Homminid

Developer: the Behemoth Development Time: ~18 Months
Release: November 2004 Budget: $1,300,000
Category: Open  

So how does a game that is not available on the PC, a game that is only available for either the GameCube or PS2 make it into the IGF?  Through lots of blood, sweat, tears and a long time.  Alien Homminid actually began as a web game when the developers ran into an industry that seemed to have no interest in 2D gaming.  The developers teamed up together and have worked calling all of their own shots until the game was done.  The title has been picked up by a publisher, which along with the high budget may lend itself to some questioning about the game's  inclusion in the IGF, but the amount of time and method of developing this game are clearly Indie all the way!   The graphics are somewhat reminiscent of Viewtiful Joe and that is a good thing (though in this case they are all entirely hand drawn!), with the main character who reminds me of Stitch for some reason (is it the eyes).  The game itself has already been heralded as a wonderful work of innovation by mainstream gaming sites.  In the end it is a worthy place to spend your time and money if you have a PS2 or GC.

None available at this time (check back in the near future)


For information on this game, please go to DIY games and read their portion of this joint article.

Base Be Gone

Developer: Lightning Toads Development Time: ~2 Months
Release: 2004 Budget: $50.00
Category: Web/Downloadable  

A game that shows some interesting cel-shaded cartoon like graphics (seems to be a new trend).  In Base Be Gone you take on the role of Carl who is dropped onto a planet.  Why you might ask?  Well because the planet has been spewing spam towards the earth!  Finally a chance to take it to the spammers!  The game plays much like the screenshot, on a small planet that is so small you can actually see the curvature of the planet as you move about.  You are in control of a tank and you will find that thankfully there are crates scattered about that contain weapons for your tank.  The tank controls quite a bit like a tank, which is to say you won't be turning on a dime.  Thankfully it can take a licking and keep on ticking, so, as you find yourself flipping it upside down, just know that it shouldn't be the immediate end to you.  The sound in the game is a bit wacky to say the least.  Base Be Gone is an interesting take on the whole FPS genre with at least a couple of innovative features.

None available at this time

Bouncy Hunters

For information on this game, please go to DIY games and read their portion of this joint article.

Call of the Warlords

Developer: Gamalocus ApS Development Time: ~36 Months
Release: April 2002 Budget: $125,000
Category: Web/Downloadable