Indie Games sind überall, aber was bedeutet das eigentlich? Während der Berlin Games Week trafen vier Indie-Vertreter aus den Bereichen Gaming, Film und Musik aufeinander und versuchten, der Sache auf den Grund zu gehen:
Samstag, 12 April 2014 17:48
Donnerstag, 20 März 2014 11:20
I’ve always been a sucker for games with an excellent narrative. I’ve written quite a number of times about the value of narrative within games and how it propels the medium to a new level of art. But I’ve noticed that the mainstream AAA market has begun focusing less and less on narrative quality and more on gameplay mechanics. So where is the narrative greatness that I love come from in recent times? Indie games. Almost exclusively indie games as well. I’ve played most of the new AAA offerings and all have left me wanting in the narrative department. While they were very fun to play, they still lacked good storytelling and interesting characters. And then indie games have excelled in that department.
I think it all boils down to creative freedom. AAA developers are limited in what they can achieve in their games with regards to narrative because of how the business works. They need to focus more on how pretty the game looks and how good it handles and less and less resources are placed into the whole story aspect. Indie developers don’t have that problem. They can essentially do whatever the hell the want to do and that amount of freedom allows them to create some genuinely captivating experiences.
Look at a game like Gone Home. Pitch that idea to an EA marketing board and they will laugh you out of the room so that they can get back to sacrificing firstborns. A purely narrative driven game with little to no gameplay and some controversial ideas is exactly what the AAA market tries its hardest to avoid because it isn’t at all marketable. Indie games have that freedom of expression that is being slowly taken away from mainstream gaming in favour of dudebro gunplay and big robots.
Thanks to services like Steam, these games can find their way into our gaming lives. A game like Papers, Please will never be able to get a boxed release purely because of how abstract it is. Try writing a box blurb for a game like that. “Be a border control officer at a fictional communist country and check papers of foreigners trying to get in! Experience emotional turmoil and action packed cross referencing in this stellar bureaucracy-em-up!” It just won’t work.
Indie games are fast becoming the only way narrative driven games can still get out there because you have passionate people trying to tell their story in a creative way. AAA games are all about the sales and the action. They don’t particularly care if the story is bland, as long as the guns fire correctly. We still get narrative games from the mainstream, but they are becoming scarce. I can’t truly remember the last time I played an excellent AAA game with an excellent story to boot. But I can say I’ve played The Stanley Parable, Gone Home and Thomas Was Alone that each had amazing stories and ideas.
Maybe this is for the better. We can get solid gameplay experiences from the AAA, but when we want a good story we can look at the indie scene. They can easily exist in unison. I hope to see a lot more stellar story experiences emerging from the indie community because the offerings I’ve seen recently are all amazing.
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Mittwoch, 19 März 2014 17:22
It almost seems like everyone focuses on PS4′s incredible indie program and casts Microsoft’s one aside. Sure, they’re trying to force down some pretty weird legislation the throats of some developers, but that hasn’t stopped more than a few from announcing title for the Xbox One.
In fact, Microsoft announced 25 new titles that will be coming to the Xbox One through their indie program, ID@Xbox.
Speaking at GDC, Microsoft Studios corporate vice president Phil Spencer revealed that over 250 developers had received development kits since the announcement of the program, and that even more title are currently in development for their console.
The only real del developers have to make with Microsoft at the moment is the promise that their games will not release on any other platforms before the Xbox One. Seemingly innocent, but something that Sony doesn’t enforce.
Spencer had this to say about Microsoft’s self-publishing program at GDC yesterday.
“Our goal has always been to make Xbox One the best place to play games, and that means having a diverse portfolio for gamers to choose from. We’ve worked closely with independent developers to bring their own brand of creativity and innovation to the platform and today is just the beginning.”
Following that, Microsoft released the full list of titles heading to the Xbox One soon. You can check out all 25 games below.
- “1001 Spikes” by Nicalis
- “Calibre 10 Racing Series” by Bongfish GmbH
- “CastleStorm” by Zen Studios
- “Chariot” by Frima
- “Chuck’s Challenge 3D” by Niffler
- “Contrast” by Compulsion Games
- “Divekick Addition Edition +” by Iron Galaxy Studios
- “Forced” by BetaDwarf ApS
- “FRU” by Through Games
- “Guacamelee Super Turbo Championship Edition” by DrinkBox Studios
- “Gunscape” by Blowfish Studios
- “Habitat” by 4gency
- “Hyper Light Drifter” by Heart Machine
- “It Draws a Red Box” by Other Ocean
- “Nutjitsu” by NinjaBee
- “Pinball Arcade” by FarSight Studios
- “Q.U.B.E. Director’s Cut” by Toxic Games
- “Riptide GP2” by Vector Unit
- “Roundabout” by No Goblin
- “Sixty Second Shooter Prime” by Happion Laboratories
- “Spectra: 8bit Racing” by Gateway Interactive
- “Strike Suit Zero” by Born Ready Games
- “Super Time Force” by Capybara
- “The Last Tinker” by Mimimi Productions
- “Wulverblade” by Darkwind Media
Could indie really define the difference between the Xbox One and PS4? Maybe, and the amount of investment both companies are putting into self-publishing is pretty incredible.
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