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24 Nov 14:39

JavaScript Template Strings

by David Walsh

Read the full article at: JavaScript Template Strings

Treehouse

Seemingly every language has a template string enhancement, and within JavaScript we’ve written our own to allow more seamless development without the need to concatenate everything.  Some of these template helpers even allow for looping, iteration, and conditional support.  Native implementations always start small but I’m excited about template strings in JavaScript!

The JavaScript

The template format is very simple:  backticks(`) instead of single or double quotes, and a $ for interpolation wrapping:

// Basic interpolation
var name = 'David';
console.log(`Hi, my name is ${name}`); // Hi, my name is David

// Math :)
var one = 1;
var two = 2;
console.log(`Your total is: ${one+two}`); // Your total is: 3

// More math
console.log(`Another total is: ${one + two * 2}`); // Another total is: 5

// Object properties
var obj = { x: 1, y: 2 };
console.log(`Your total is: ${obj.x + obj.y}`); // Your total is: 3

You can also use template strings for basic new line acceptance:

var myString = `Hello

I'm a new line`; // No error!

The JavaScript template string feature is a nice add, and will first become available in Firefox.  This template string feature isn’t groundbreaking but it’s a nice enhancement and something long overdue, if only for multi-line strings.

20 Nov 21:00

How iOS 8.1.1 Affects Performance on Older Devices

by Thorin Klosowski

How iOS 8.1.1 Affects Performance on Older Devices

Apple released an update to iOS 8 earlier this week that promised performance increases on older devices like the iPhone 4S, iPad 2, iPad Mini, and iPod Touch. Ars Technica took a look at the numbers and found some disappointing results.

Read more...

24 Oct 09:00

Show Me Your Moves: Toxikk

by Ben Barrett

Whooooaaaaaa

I’ve been keeping one of my infinite eyeballs on arena FPS Toxikk while the rest stare at Unreal Tournament, Blizzard and my own naval. It’s a genre I’m convinced only needs a small push to skyrocket in popularity now that we live in an age of Twitch streams and YouTubers. Much like MOBAs it’s a genre ripe for spectating and competition in equal measure but just needs that one uber-popular game to gather a following. Will this be it? Time will tell, but for now Reakktor have revealed how they’re planning for movement to work. As discussed in the video below, this is the starting point as all other balance – weapons and map size particularly – revolves around it.

… [visit site to read more]

13 Aug 16:00

Unreal Tournament 2014 Playable, Free To All

by Ben Barrett

Want to play the new Unreal Tournament for free, right this very second? Cor blimey and OMG you totes can! Hero of the people ‘raxxy’ on the Unreal Forums is compiling Epic’s builds and releasing them as small, playable packages that anyone can run, with multiple updates per week. The maps are untextured, the weapons unbalanced, and things change rapidly as everything’s still “pre-alpha” but it’s playable and – more importantly – fun.

… [visit site to read more]

21 May 13:00

Astoundingly, Total Chaos Is A Doom II Mod

by Nathan Grayson

Doom II? Did you get a haircut? And also plastic surgery and a name change and a new home and a new family and Silent Hill's fog effects?

Remember Doom II? Remember how it came out in 1994? I’m going to go ahead and assume the creators of Total Chaos don’t, because otherwise they would understand what they’re doing is impossible, and it would immediately poof into non-existence. Oh, and it gets better: the mod’s biggest inspiration is apparently STALKER, which has my gamerly Geiger counter crackling with thunderous glee. Or maybe that’s my regular Geiger counter. I should probably check on that. In the meantime, there’s a very impressive trailer below.

… [visit site to read more]

12 May 19:00

Rubik’s Surface: Flip

by Adam Smith

Take me out for a romantic meal and you’ll have to order that fourth bottle of wine before I reveal an emotion and even then it’s likely to warp into a desire to find a dark underground club that plays music sucked from the scabby centre of the nineties. A bellyfull of Pinot Noir and a blast of Longpigs, and I’m done – vanishing into the forest of bodies on the dancefloor. Not a cheap date, or a particularly satisfying one.

When it comes to puzzle games, I’m the cheapest of cheap dates though, as Flip proved to me a few moments ago. The free version of this attractive and perplexing perception-troubler contains ‘more than 20 puzzles’ but I recognised the potential limits of my patience after around fifteen. It’s clever stuff though and the full version, which is $2.49 (50% discounted) at present, offers more than a thousand conundrums.

… [visit site to read more]

12 May 17:00

A Story About My Uncle I Guess But Mostly Grappling Hooks

by Alice O'Connor

ZAP!

Hey gang, and welcome back to another exciting round of Judge A Game By Its Name! Today we’re looking at A Story About My Uncle. You’re thinking 2D puzzle-platformer, right? Monochromatic palette, perhaps accented with red. Lots of slow walking sections with quiet introspective narration, surely? If that’s your final answer, then I’m sorry to say you haven’t won today, as it’s actually a first-person puzzle platformer based around a zappy grappling hook glove. You won’t take home the Jet Ski and Royal Doulton plates but on the bright side, we’re all getting a new grappling hook game.

It’ll arrive in a few weeks, on May 28, publisher Coffee Stain Studios has announced with a new trailer. (Yes, it now publishes as well as making games like Sanctum and Goat Simulator.)

… [visit site to read more]

14 Apr 19:00

On A High Speed Rail: Half-Life 1 Finished In 21 Minutes

by Graham Smith

These guys don't stand a chance.

Like any form of competition, speedrunning generates arguments over authenticity. Does a speedrun count if it relies on a bunny-hopping mod, in-game glitches and different runners tackling different parts of the game in short segments? I’m not sure I care either way. No matter the methods, Half-Life 1 being completed in 20 minutes and 41 seconds is an accomplishment of endurance, skill and effort. More importantly it’s a beautifully entertaining video, full of ingenuity and grace and physical comedy. The new record time is embedded below. You must watch it.

… [visit site to read more]

04 Apr 17:00

The Bytes Fantastic: Mind – Path To Thalamus

by Adam Smith

The trailer for Mind: Path To Thalamus is a dream-like series of beautiful landscapes, with a backing of melancholy piano and sorrowful synths. Promising environmental manipulation as well as a jolly good stroll through the corridors of memory and (of course) regret, it reminds me of Linger in Shadows, the demoscene project that broke through onto PS3. It all begins with a voiceover, which I managed to ignore, but it ends with another snippet of monologue that croaked out of my speakers, along with the mental image of a beatnik sitting on a windowsill and sucking on a Gauloises while contemplating the shape of the smoke, and pondering how fascinating he must look from afar. Mind is heading to the Rift.

… [visit site to read more]

24 Mar 19:00

Browser Pick: Don't See Me (ABA Games)

by Tim

dontseeme.pngDon't See Me is Kenta Cho's attempt at crafting a simple stealth game with enemies that have a visible field of vision. You can sneak behind an enemy and kill them for points, but you'll have to do it before an enemy turns around and sees the player. Should this happen, the enemy will give chase until they either capture or lose sight of you.

Bonus points are awarded if you taunt an enemy just before you kill them. To do this, you'll have to sneak behind an enemy for a couple of seconds before taking them down with a swift ambush. It's a risky move, but delaying the kill does reward you with more points to add to your score.

Don't See Me is available to play at this link.

29 Mar 03:00

ZX Spectrum Pick - Ninja Twins: Going to Zedeaks

by James Monkman

ninjatwins.png

Genuine 8-Bit conversions or remakes of modern indie releases are always fun, but even with the best-known examples of backwards-ported games there are always design sacrifices that have to be made due to the limited target hardware. For this reason an indie game running on a retro platform that actually improves on the original is a real rarity - yet that's arguably what the team behind Ninja Twins: Going to Zedeaks have seemingly achieved with their unofficial ZX Spectrum tribute/clone/sequel of KronBits 2013 freeware puzzler.

Ninja Twins is a tile-based puzzle game featuring ninjas (unsurprisingly), with the player navigating the two simultaneously-controlled titular twins through 30 challenging single-screen levels in their quest to steal treasure. You only have a limited number of moves at your disposal and there's often only a single solution to each screen - making the wrong move almost always involves a sticky end thanks to the deviously positioned array of spikes and other sharp pointy things.

To be perfectly honest, perhaps the single addition of high-contrast colour over the grey-scale original is pushing it in terms of 'improvement', but after playing through the 25 all-new levels on real hardware this cute little game won me over with its charm. In terms of level design and difficulty the port is pretty much on par with the original, with some allowances made for the smaller play area, and completion of the game even rewards players with a neat little end sequence.

ninja2.png

Despite the Spectrum being limited to only two colours per 8x8 pixels, the presentation of the game is fantastic, with a really nice parallax scrolling effect behind the play area and a short lo-fi chip soundtrack that compliments the ninja atmosphere perfectly. Progress is saved via a password system and the keyboard controls are set to the good old QAOP combination that practically every home computer game used in the 1980's (after all, these were the days before cursor keys were standard and WASD would have blown our minds back then). Additional keys include Enter to confirm a selection, 'R' to restart a level (very useful) and 'H' calls up the main menu.

Much like the original game, Ninja Twins: Going to Zedeaks is a great little puzzler - and if you're not afraid to work through an emulator I totally recommend that you give it a go. Oh, and if you have a PC, Mac, Android device or even an Ouya you can grab the official KronBits version from the link below.

ninja5.png

Download the ZX Spectrum port here.
Download the original game here.

[If you don't already have a ZX Spectrum emulator, I recommend FUSE. To load the game, install and run the emulator, press F9 and select 'Spectrum 128'. Then press F3, select the Ninja Twins tape file and the game will start automatically. Increase the size of the window by selecting Options -> Filter.]

10 Mar 17:02

Mondays.



Mondays.

19 Feb 19:10

Browser Pick: Delirious Bird (Ryan Melmoth)

by John Polson

delirious bird.pngIf your Wednesday is going a bit slow, I recommend trying Ryan Melmoth's Delirious Bird, an entry for the Flappy Jam. The basic gameplay is still Flappy Bird (auto-flying through two structures while tapping a button to stay afloat); however, the music rocks pretty hard, and the visual effects increase in trippiness as you play.

You become more delirious as you hit the red and yellow pills, causing the visuals to distort. Your sanity is restored if you get the white pills, but to enjoy the game is to revel in its audiovisual masochism, I find. Accompanied by some wonderful guitar riffs, maximum deliriousness makes each second you survive that much more intoxicating.

[Delirious Bird on Game Jolt]

24 Feb 00:00

FreeFixer Removes Unwanted Programs from Your PC

by Mihir Patkar

FreeFixer Removes Unwanted Programs from Your PC

Windows: Over time, your Windows PC will have accumulated a whole bunch of unwanted programs, services and other things that slow it down. FreeFixer sorts and lists everything on your hard drive and offers more information about each to help decide whether it's needed.

Read more...

30 Jan 22:30

Radio Search Engine Instantly Searches Every Live Radio Station

by Thorin Klosowski

Radio Search Engine Instantly Searches Every Live Radio Station

There's no shortage of apps that'll play any song you can imagine at any time, but Radio Search Engine is a webapp that does it by searching out what's playing live on the radio right now. From there, it can build a playlist of other live streaming tracks for you.

Read more...

31 Jan 10:00

Freeware Pick: pointing-and-clicking for the lost Serena

by Konstantinos Dimopoulos / Gnome

Agustin Cordes, the Argentinian gentleman responsible for Scratches and the kickstarted horrors of the forthcoming Asylum, has assembled an adventure gaming all-star team and created something comfortably gruesome and kindly freeware: Serena. A wonderfully atmospheric, node-based adventure game.

Sporting the talents of Jan Kavan of CBE Software, Sierra's Josh Mandel, indie adventurer Ben Chandler, Scott Murphy of Space Quest fame and many more genre stalwarts, Serena is a short, dark and emphatic testament to what close-knit communities can achieve. It will satisfyingly disturb you in less than an hour.

Apparently, Serena is also a showcase of what the Dagon engine can do on Windows, Mac and Linux and one of the few actually touching horror games I have ever played.

08 Jan 21:45

Top 10 indie game devs' favorites from '13, industry wish list for '14 (part duex)

by John Polson

rami fishing.jpgstanley parable devs.jpgdroqen sharecart.jpgsteamworld brjann.jpg

IndieGames follows up with more of the devs behind the top 10 indie games of 2013, asking what they hope from the industry in 2014, along with what their most memorable games were. Today's collection includes members from The Stanley Parable HD, SteamWorld Dig, Sharecart1000, and another from the fabulous Ridiculous Fishing team.

rami fishing.jpgRidiculous Fishing developer Rami Ismail of Vlambeer

2013's top games:

Let's get the obvious picks out of the way first. There's no way of overstating just how important games like Papers, Please, Gone Home, Antichamber and The Stanley Parable HD were to the mainstream acceptance of our little corner of gaming. On mobile and handheld, Device 6 made a big impact on me, and The Legend Of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, Animal Crossing: New Leaf and Persona 4: Golden all weaselled their way into my daily ritual in ways I haven't experienced since I started making games at Vlambeer.

We had a wonderful year for Local Multiplayer, with both Samurai Gunn and Towerfall likely to have caused many game developers favourite moment of the year. I want to mention The Last of Us if only for that tremendously impactful introduction, and I loved the fluidity of combat in DMC: Devil May Cry. On the other end, I think the jam scene had an amazing year. Ludum Dare 28 spawned both The Day The Laughter Stopped and Titan Souls, the first being perfect as is and the second leaving so much room to grow into a full project.

Earlier this year, Vlambeer's co-hosted 7DFPS game jam led to SUPERHOT, which I still think has potential to be something really interesting. And is The Iconoclasts out yet? No? Maybe next year then. With how that game is shaping up, it is going to be on one of my end of years lists, I can promise you that.

2014 wish list for the industry:

I argued a week ago that 2013 was a year of buildup, a year of positioning pieces in a way that allow the industry to really make progress in 2014. We'll see a new wave of indie games launch on all platforms, ranging from phones to consoles, platforms that are all increasingly accessible for developers - and hopefully the platforms continue to evolve in the direction of inclusivity. While I expect AAA games to become even more overwhelming, defining themselves more and more by a set of defined content rather than just graphical prowess, I do also believe that larger indie studios will become increasingly capable of competing with them directly. I think indies will become more confident, hopefully somewhat reverting the race to the bottom of yesteryear, but I also think the term 'indie' has become so fragmented that it's usability is about to expire or evolve.

I also hope that we'll find a new platform that can handle all the up- and coming indies now that other platforms are focusing on the more experienced develoeprs. itch.io seems like it might be that platform, essentially being a Bandcamp for games, and I expect great things of the service. Finally, my hopes are that there will be more progress regarding the topic of diversity, whether it is gender, race, or sex-related, but also from a socio-geographical perspective - emerging territories in the Middle East, South America, Africa and Asia deserve a larger podium as well.

And for all that talk in 2013 of an indie bubble? If they mean that ongoing changes in the industry mean that some established developers are going to have to adapt or disappear, and that others will have the ability to create new and wonderful things, I'm all for that. We've seen what stagnation brings, and the worst thing that could happen is that at the end of 2014 we look back and think 'wow, nothing really happened this year'.

stanley parable devs.jpgThe Stanley Parable's Davey Wreden (top) and William Pugh of Galactic Cafe

2013's top games:

Limits and Demonstrations, The Entertainment: Kentucky Route Zero is an amazing game, but I'm particularly compelled by the two interlude pieces they've created between central Acts of the game. These interludes do not simply exist on their own, they occupy a nebulous liminal space between Acts, which are themselves liminal spaces between spaces. The fact that these games can contextualize and support a bigger game while still being utterly compelling as games on their own is a remarkable feat of narrative design.

A Dark Room: This year saw quite a few watch-the-number-go-up games achieve popularity, but A Dark Room stood out for us because of the emotional core it brought to this very frivolous mechanic. The number-going-up is not the game's raison d'etre, it is a conduit for a story about discovery, surprise, and loss. A tremendously human experience laid on top of a frivolous mechanic, we love it.

Antichamber is like a big melting pot full of everything we love about games. we think it's pretty profound and smart and very very clever. But where a lot of other very clever games detach you emotionally from their experiences, we felt incredibly wrapped up in Antichamber's sprawling blanket of warmth and genius. Exploring it's twisting hallways felt like a conversation with both a magnificent prankster and a very good friend.

Proteus creates this wonderful space for your mind to live in - even if it's just for a while. It's super rare for a game to provide such a lasting and rich feeling of peace and tranquillity for such an extended amount of time. It's a real adventure for us - it brings us back to going on walks in the woods with my mum. It's so rare that we find a game that really fills us with such child-like awe and joy. Proteus is brilliant!

Papers, Please: We often see discussion about how Papers, Please is a game of oppression, evil, drudgery and hardship. But much to the contrary we personally feel that it's an incredibly hopeful game! It's so bursting with life and humanity, it evokes such a complex range of emotions. It can be harsh and oppressive, but it can also be redemptive, surprising, optimistic, and at times incredibly funny! In yours truly's opinion, a game that so celebrates the spectrum of human emotion could only have been made with genuine love and affirmation for that spectrum.

2014 wish list for the industry:

I'd love to see more promotion done that actually stems from the same design sensibility used to create the game itself. As in, I'd really like to see marketing that is as thoughtful and deliberate as the game it's promoting, for creators to be able to get their name out and make a living without sacrificing the integrity of their design.

droqen sharecart.jpgAlexander Martin (droqen), co-creator of Sharecart1000

2013's top games:

Corrypt: I don't think I have anything clever to say about Corrypt except that its world is beautiful & fascinating, and I wouldn't change it for anything.

It's at the top of my list for a reason, though, so it'd be a shame to leave it at that. When you gain power it's seductive and powerful; a resource to be managed and purchased; collected and not wasted. It's some really potent stuff, granting you the power to break through any obstacle in the game -- or a few at once, if you're really clever about it. That ability's inter-room potential alone has been really inspiring, but once the honeymoon phase of MAGIC wears off... that's when the real Corrypt starts.

FJORDS: Whenever I watch people unfamiliar with platformers play platformers I find myself a little frustrated: most commonly (and most strangely) I see a reluctance to jump and move at the same time, resulting in awkward, too-short jumps. When FJORDS came along it treated me to a thoroughly alien 'platformer' experience. I came into it with certain expectations: I should be able to get around by jumping, for example. Quickly I had to let that one go -- because if I hadn't, I would have never made any progress. Instead I had to throw myself headfirst into its strange modes of moving.

Plus I'm really a fan of maps, and it's one of the few games I fully mapped out this year. For pizza.

Save the Date: You make a choice in a game, and it ends terribly. Game over. Clearly, you made the wrong choice somewhere along the line -- you'll make another choice next time, The Right Choice, and there won't be any ninjas and nobody will die. In most games save-stating or simply restarting the entire game allows you to explore every possibility until you find the best one: the much-desired GOOD ENDING.

Save the Date plays with a lot of these concepts and instead of putting up a facade, it deals with the reality; and it does so very well. It goes beyond being a self-aware game: it affords you the ability to be a self-aware player.

Spy Party: In an entirely different category than the above games, Spy Party is a really unique 2-player competitive game about picking a spy (human) out of a crowd of unaware partygoers (AI). It's weird to me that there might still be people out there who haven't heard of this game, but it's a very involved asymmetric game the likes of which haven't really been seen before. If I could trick myself into making more multiplayer games, Spy Party is one of the first games I'd look to for inspiration.

Papers, Please: I think games are great at a lot of things, and until Papers, Please came long I felt like one of those things was definitely not 'convincing interactions with humans'. Clearly the interactions in Papers, Please are limited -- you can stamp a passport with yes or no, and you make a few other choices now and then and that's it, but precisely because of those restrictions I found it to be the most genuine sort of human-human experience I've ever had in a game.

This is such a small part of why so many other people like Papers, Please; but it's the most important part for me. Certainly there are other reasons why it's great, but look up or down and you'll probably find them. I love it for the framing of face-to-face human interaction that made me not pay so much attention to the boundaries themselves.

2014 wish list for the industry:

I save hardly any of my brain for thoughts about "the industry"! - it's an everchanging fabric of games to me and everything I want out of the industry is the games that come out of it. I want people making games to take the leaps we've already made and leap further. The games I mentioned above are good examples (I think!) of interesting leaps that have come out of people who make games this year, but they're not the only examples.

steamworld brjann.jpgSteamWorld Dig developer Brjann Sigurgeirsson of Image & Form

2013's top games:

Year Walk: Everybody's hailing Simogo for Device 6, and rightfully so - it's a masterpiece. But incredible as it may seem, they actually made an even better game in 2013, and this is it. Rich yet lean, atmospheric, understated, enigmatic, beautiful and downright shockingly frightening at times.

Papers, Please: Well, obviously this disturbing and thought-provoking game must make the list. Games don't have to produce adrenaline or euphoria to be great, they can be a joy to play anyway. There's been discussion whether Papers, Please lacks fun, and that's a non-issue. Just get it.

Guacamelee: Beautiful, clever and irresistible, and for some reason pitted against SteamWorld Dig in a lot of handheld GOTY discussions. DrinkBox is picking up just as many of those awards as we are (or more), and those bastards have the audacity to be wonderful guys too. Wonderfulness must be encouraged.

Stick It To The Man!: What, I don't get to nominate yet another Swedish title? I'm afraid that Stick It could fly under the radar for a lot of people, so it must be mentioned everywhere. This crazy, wonderful game is sort of an action puzzle platformer, but that's not relevant. Rather, the game's 100+ insane characters and the marvellous dialogs - and seemingly endless monologs - make it a must-have.

Chess: OK, chess maybe wasn't released in 2013 - or anytime in the past millennium for that matter - but it's my list, and it'll be the best game on the planet any given year. The only game I've played for at least an hour every day for the past four decades, and I always want to play more.

2014 wish list for the industry:

Come on Apple, it's urgent: The App Store may be shock-full of games, but that's not enough. Do one of these things immediately - or both:

(1) Come back to being the most inventive company in the world, and solve the App Store problems of near-invisibility and frozen top charts. Make it easier for consumer to find *great* games, and stop focusing on subpar monetizers for non-gamers! You will not only entice talented indies to return to iOS, but you will also establish yourself as a premium-content platform. I believe the base content for this "shift" is there already. Keep the sales charts as they are, but also establish a genre-specified "best-of" or "gamers' choice" chart, where the highest-rated games (with some pretty high minimum number of user reviews) can be put on parade. Yes, this list will also be quite static, but games already bought could be grayed-out and only briefly described. That way we can tick off that list one game at a time. And with all the great games coming out, we'll never stop buying!

(2) Start moderating the torrent of content for quality. It's *your* platform, *you* should decide which games make it. I don't think developers would be discouraged by raised quality standards. I'm positive your consumers won't be.

24 Dec 18:30

OpenEmu Emulates Nearly Every Classic Console on Mac

by Thorin Klosowski

OpenEmu Emulates Nearly Every Classic Console on Mac

Mac: OpenEmu is an all-in-one video game emulator where you can emulate your games, create collections, set up controllers, and plenty more.

Read more...

13 Dec 14:31

CFT calendar 2014 by Ruslan Lobanov (by Ruslan Lobanov)



CFT calendar 2014 by Ruslan Lobanov (by Ruslan Lobanov)

11 Dec 14:30

Freeware Pick: Trippy Trippy Bad Bad

by Tim W.

trippyb2a.jpgLuke Rissacher's Trippy Trippy Bad Bad is a puzzle arena shooter in which players have to get their on-screen avatar past a swarm of insects and make it to the exit of every room. You can only avoid the creepy-crawlies in the first few stages, but latter levels will contain guns for you to collect and use in your escape.

Each enemy will have its own unique traits for players to discover. Giant beetles chase after you whenever you get close to them, centipedes split into two when you shoot at any part of their body, while ants move in a straight line and will only change direction when they bump into an obstacle.

trippyb2b.jpgMost rooms take less than a minute to play through, and a level skip option is included for players who are having difficulty getting past any of them. There's also a boss fight at the end of the campaign, and you can unlock two extra modes if you beat enough stages under their par time.

The Windows version of Trippy Trippy Bad Bad is available to download now from Quadruple-A's site.

[Download Trippy Trippy Bad Bad]

28 Nov 09:00

Browser Picks: ZX Spectrum jam games

by John Polson

speccy jam 1.pngThe first one-week Speccy Jam, dedicated to creating 8-bit games that would feel at home on the Sinclair ZX Spectrum, recently concluded with over 20 entries submitted. There's no need to worry about an emulator, though, as almost all of the games chosen below work in your browser.

firewall 48k.pngToxin Games' Firewall 48K is a four-sided frantic Space Invaders of sorts, with you needing to constantly switch between sides with WASD to shoot enemies as they move inward. If you lose your barrier, you can replenish it by allowing white download chips to fall to the center. Of course, not shooting them when they are next to the enemy virus is a challenge.

water spears.pngJeromBD's Water Spears is a tough deep-sea diving game, where players have to manage their spear count, oxygen levels, and lives while collecting pearls, gold, and air bubbles and avoiding enemies and purple urchins and thorns.

henry hedgehog.pngCraig Moore's Henry Hedgehog and the Haunted House is a solid platformer that has you collecting the letters to spell "Henry" to save his girlfriend. I almost feel like the double jump makes the game too easy and seems not needed.

attack defend.pngDioxin Dump's Attack! Defend! Magic! is a turn-based battle game that makes the shortlist because of its exceptional animated death sequences. They make the fighting feel satisfying, even with the random card element that seems to dictate the strength of your turn.

are you there theseus.pngFreeware here, (yep, you gotta download it), but worth a mention: BeeTLe BeTHLeHeM's Are You There Theseus? is a fantasy roguelike, with the basic features of the genre (permadeath, procedural generation, multiple-level dungeon) and various interactive content (monsters with particular properties, items, shops, tiles with special effects).

Looking for a Bit.Trip Runner-like? Derpman has you covered. A Desktop Dungeons clone? Speccy Dungeons is your game.

If none of the picks sound fun, you can easily go through all the Speccy Jam games online.

20 Nov 11:00

Black Mesa Coming To Steam For Real Moneydollars

by Nathan Grayson

Spare some change? I'm just a poor, hardworking headcrab who's been let down by The System.

Halfy birthday, Hap-Life! Well, I guess it’s technically the day after your birthday now, but an upgraded version of Source-powered Half-Life tribute Black Mesa still counts as a gift, I think. You might remember that the free labor of time, love, and more time was greenlit a while back, but now it’s finally taking the Lab Facility Train Ride of Ultimate Auspiciousness over to Steam. Better still, Gabe and the knights of the Valve table have given it their blessing, allowing the Black Mesa team to earn some especially pretty pennies for their hard work. The Steam version will include new features too, but not Xen. That’s apparently still “a ways off,” sadly.

(more…)

14 Nov 20:10

Now free to download - AlterEgo: DreamWalker

by Tim W.

alteredw.pngOriginally being sold for 3 dollars on Desura, Denis Grachev decided this week to make AlterEgo: DreamWalker a free download on all platforms that the game is available on (with the exception of Windows Phone). In it, you get to control two characters at the same time, but you're required to switch between both of them in order to overcome the challenges in each level.

The number of swaps allowed per stage will always be indicated above your twin's head. If you make a mistake or run out of switches before all items are successfully collected, the only option left is to restart the level. It's an unnecessary limitation imposed on players, but I suppose the developer's intention was to make each room seem more like a puzzle if you have to stop and think on your approach to gathering all of the pixels.

You can grab the Windows, Linux, and Android versions of AlterEgo: Dreamwalker from the link below.

[Download AlterEgo: DreamWalker]

11 Nov 21:20

What’s up Stevie !!! (November 2013)

by Stevelois

Mapping,

I’m glad I finally finished the two maps planned for the next UOF Map Pack (UOF5). This is DM-Mako-L2 and Greed-Mégane Winter Edition. I am very proud of Greed-Mégane WE as it is in my opinion the best of my maps at all levels and I have worked hard to achieve this! But I can reveal the release date of this pack. So, to follow…

I started another low poly (BSP) map since some months now which I didn’t found a name yet. This map is using the ‘Quake 4, PK02 texture set’ by Philip Klevestav. This is the official preview of the pack :

And also some work in progress pictures :

Stevie’s corner site,

I’ve made many changes under the 3D / Arts main section. You will find a completely revamped Artist page :)

In the UT3 world,

I note that despite several recent publications on BU / Epic forums, threads are almost empty of comments despite there are hundreds of views ? This is very discouraging for level designers :( Although we build maps for us at first, it is important to get the community support, otherwise it give absolutely nothing to release something on a forum if no one share their comment ! Players, it takes 10 seconds to write something constructive while we, level designers, take us months to build a quality map. So comment if you want to download other maps in the future ! Do not wait until the forums are empty before doing it ;)

In the UDK world,

Although a little slow since the past months, very interesting projects continue to appear on the Epic and Polycount forums. I am amazed to see so many quality projects. This is great !


Filed under: Varia
12 Nov 08:00

Live From Chanel 9: Attractio

by John Walker

A thing I’ve noticed about trailers is they very rarely show you the player failing. You can see why – a game wants to show itself as this vivid, exciting time, where you will endlessly succeed. But it certainly proves refreshing to see a game showing failure, as is evident in the trailer for elaborate first-person, gravity-themed puzzle game Attractio. And if you want to experience these failures for yourself, there’s a demo available.

(more…)

15 Oct 16:00

LightZone Is a Free, Awesome Photo Editor and Alternative to Lightroom

by Melanie Pinola

LightZone Is a Free, Awesome Photo Editor and Alternative to Lightroom

Windows/Mac/Linux: Adobe Lightroom might be the professional photographer's photo management tool of choice, but you can save $149 and download free and open source LightZone instead.

Read more...

14 Oct 12:00

Super-Pretty Survival Puzzle FPS Raindrop Kickstarts

by Jim Rossignol


Craig was rather impressed with our initial glimpses of Raindrop, a very pretty survival FPS which has been in slow development as a Source mod for many years. Now though it’s made the jump to Unity in order to materialise as a standalone project. The survival space is beginning to looks quite busy now, and Raindrop aims to stand apart by being “a surreal, environment driven, survival game that includes fully explorable levels with intuitive, complex puzzles.” An FPS puzzler and survival game? Does this see the FPS puzzle legacy of the past few years finally colliding with the survival genre?

Watch the video, because this one’s a beauty.
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11 Oct 17:20

Browser, Mobile Pick: new puzzler 10 is free for the first 10 days

by Lena LeRay

Some of the best puzzle games excel because they use simple mechanics to give players the tools and space to hang themselves if they aren't careful. That's exactly what 10 does, and it does it with bright colors and basic math.

IOJOE's 10 is all about moving blocks in straight lines to combine them, adding the numbers on them together until you create a block which, as you can probably guess from the name, shows the number 10. Combine all the number blocks into 10 blocks and you've beaten the level. Once a 10 block has been created, it becomes sedentary, immobile yet able to be used as walls to direct other blocks where you wish them. If you're not paying attention, however, they can also make it impossible to win, as examples from my own playing show.

iojoe_10.png

Later levels introduce new kinds of blocks, starting with sedentary blocks which are present from the first but including things like wormholes that suck your blocks in. The game has launched with 140 levels, but IOJOE intends to add more content with time.

The game is available for iOS and Android devices, and is currently free on iOS. This is a release promotion only valid for ten days, however, until October 20th. After that, the game will be $0.99 in both stores. 55 of the levels are also available in the browser version.

10 Oct 00:35

Freeware Picks: Indie Speed Run 2.0.1

by John Polson

ISR 2.0.pngSecret Formulas. Hookshot swings. The Chains of Poverty. Chainsaw grindfest. Laser Command. Mixing colors for missiles. Harvest Escape. Heavymetal mowing.

These are some of my favorite things from Indie Speed Run 2.0 today.

Windows freeware Secret Formula by team IDK takes "secrecy" and "vines" and creates a swinging platformer, where you dodge lasers and missiles and swing over acid, all the while discovering secrets of your origin in the lab.

Monterrey ISR Jam's browser-based Laser Command takes Missile Command and "combines" color theory with "sunglasses," where you try to avoid bright lights and cross laser streams to shoot down invaders that don't match the primary colors you start out with.

AbstrAKTGames's Windows freeware The Chains of Poverty takes the variables of "chainsaw" and "poverty" to create a modern grind game, where your abject chainsaw performs for money, sawing certain objects and dodging others. You aim to furnish the chainsaw's condo (thereby earning power-ups to perform longer) and complete his longing for material objects.

Lastly, Team Neverpants combines "agriculture" and "engines" to make the browser-based, speed puzzler Harvest Escape. You only have so many seconds to decide where you and your farm animals should stand to avoid getting mowed down. The music and sound effects are of particular delight.

14 Aug 02:55

Chris Coyier’s Favorite CodePen Demos

by chriscoyier

Chris Coyer’s incredible CodePen is much more than your typical code’n'share site. CodePen features the end result more than the code, provides loads of collaboration tools, and seems to be pushing new features every week. But what does Chris think of the user work being done on CodePen? I’ve asked Chris to share his favorite pens — enjoy!

CodePen Logo

David asked me if I’d be up for a guest post picking out some of my favorite Pens from CodePen. A daunting task! There are so many! I managed to pick a few though that have blown me away over the past few months. If you just can’t get enough, I heart a bunch of Pens every day and reserve my triple hearted Pens for my absolute favorites.

Whale

I love the simplicity of this one. When you think about how it’s made, it’s just some shapes stacked on top of each other that follow the mouse around. But timing and the shading and responsiveness and everything makes it so satisfying to play with.

See the Pen Whale | SVG & JS by Diego Leme (@diegoleme) on CodePen

Avgrund

Hakim’s demos are always so perfect it’s hard to pick one. I think I like this one because of how practical it is. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a modal window accomplish the visual trompe l’oeil of depth so well.

See the Pen Avgrund by Hakim El Hattab (@hakimel) on CodePen

Tearable Cloth

I believe this is our most popular Pen ever on CodePen with going on 1.5 million views. And for good reason. It’s rather amazing how “real” interacting with it feels – with the gravity and the swaying and how the fabric folds up on itself and tears and falls to the floor and everything.

See the Pen Tear-able Cloth by suffick (@stuffit) on CodePen

Ribbon

Justin Windle also creates spine-tingling interactions. It is easy to feel good about the future of the web platform when you see stuff like this performing so smoothly.

See the Pen Ribbon by Justin Windle (@soulwire) on CodePen

Light Loader

I’m a sucker for particle demos, but especially when they have a practical twist to them like this progress bar indicator by Jack Rugile. I’d wait all day for a page to load with that baby.

See the Pen Light Loader by Jack Rugile (@jackrugile) on CodePen

Mechanical Grass

This Tim Holman Pen just immediately transports me to some other worldly place. Like a steampunk Alice in Wonderland or something.

See the Pen Mechanical Grass by Tim Holman (@tholman) on CodePen

Personal Page

I felt really good about CodePen when I saw this Pen by Tim Pietrusky:

I spend my online time chatting with the 4ae9b8 team. We found each other through CodePen. Hugo Giraudel, Mads Cordes (>:D), Sara Soueidan, Ana Tudor, Fabrice Weinberg & Joshua Hibbert. A really awesome group of people to spend the timewith. I ❤ you guys!

See the Pen “Tell us something about you” by Tim Pietrusky (@TimPietrusky) on CodePen

Twitter Button Concept

3D CSS effects can be simple, classy, and effective like Bennett Feely proves here.

See the Pen Twitter Button Concept by Erik Deiner by Bennett Feely (@bennettfeely) on CodePen

Triangle Optical Illusion

Ana Tudor is great at instructional programming, where she reveals how it is done through the visual demo itself. This tricky old optical illusion is one of my favorite fun examples of that.

See the Pen Now how does this happen? :) by Ana Tudor (@thebabydino) on CodePen

A huge thank you to Chris for sharing his favorite pens! It’s really great to get his take on the work being featured on his platform. I hope you enjoyed his favorites and hit CodePen to find a few of your own! I also hope you are inspired to add your own awesomeness to CodePen so he picks your pen next time!

Read the full article at: Chris Coyier’s Favorite CodePen Demos

Treehouse

Sencha Touch Mobile Framework