EGX 2016: Day 4 - Time To Slow Down and Take Stock
The last day of EGX 2016 was a relatively slow one compared to the previous days but in a way it was good because it gave me the chance to try a few games I didn't already have scheduled, do a bit of networking and get a couple of interviews done. The first part of the day was taken up by interviewing Colin McComb, one of the main guys behind Planescape: Torment to discuss his new game Torment: Tides of Numenera. I then only had one other thing scheduled in for the day.
Mekazoo is a very bright and vibrant 3D platformer which is very reminiscent of the 2D platformers from the past. You control a group of mechanical animals (Mekanimals) as you take on an insectoid army and other mekanimals. There are four animals to control, and you only ever control one at a time by transforming into them. There is an armadillo which curls itself into a ball to move very fast and utilize cannons to blast through the air, a frog which can project its tongue out in front of him to grab on to holds to move around, and a wallaby which uses its legs to wall jump and break through floors. The other animals are a panda and a pelican, but they were not included in the demo.
Developers Good Mood Creators hope to have Mekazoo out during Q4 this year, and it will be available on PS4, Xbox One and PC, Mac and Linux. It will also be available on the WiiU shortly after its initial release date.
It took me a while to play this game by Mad Fellows (an indie developer from Leamington Spa, UK) mainly because of my schedule, but I did watch it a few times as I was circulating the Rezzed zone. The aim of the game is to follow a light ribbon in time with the music and then defeat bosses in a more open environment. The controls took a bit of time to get used to, but when I did get used to them, I enjoyed the game. The music in the game wasn't exactly my cup of tea, but when it was coupled with the gameplay and needing to use the rhythm to get through, that didn't really matter to me.
Aaero is scheduled to release very early 2017 and will be available on Xbox One, PS4, and PC.
This was the only game I managed to play in the Leftfield Collection at this year's event. The Leftfield Collection is sponsored by SEGA and celebrates some of the best talents in the world of independent developers.
The look of Flat Heroes is basic and very trendy, but the gameplay is intense and fast-paced. The aim of each level is just to avoid what is coming at you. Developers Parallel Circles, from Manchester, UK, say:
We have focused on creating a really tight, intuitive and responsive control, allowing players to move freely around the game area in a superfluid way.
And the result is a highly polished game, easy to learn but hard to master and is a lot of fun when playing multiplayer. You can either play co-op and work your way through a series of scenarios, or you can battle against each other with the sole purpose of taking each other out.
The game is out now in early access on Steam and is available on PC, Mac OS, and Linux.
Oh My Godheads
Introducing the worlds only capture-the-head team game! Sounds like a bit of daft concept but it really isn't. Using the age-old concept of capture-the-flag, Titutitech from Barcelona, Spain, has created a game that is different, bright, and fun but still keeps to this much-loved idea.
In Oh My Godheads, you can play with up to 4 players in the team head-to-head mode, or you can play against the game's AI. Each arena is themed on a particular civilization, and the heads are of a particular deity. For example, one of the matches we played was played on the top of a pyramid and the head we were playing with was the Egyptian Goddess Bastet. So, we've established that the aim of the game is pretty simple. You score by getting the head to your base. There is a twist, however. Each head has a nasty way of screwing you over if you are the one carrying it. I don't want to go into too much detail with that though because the surprise is a much better experience!
There is currently no release date for Oh My Godheads, but it is estimated to be hitting Steam by the end of 2016. For the moment, I will only be available on PC.
As well as playing these games, I took advantage of a couple of panels in the Rezzed area. The one that most sticks with me was listening to an amazing event which happens in Sweden every year. It is something called Stugan -- a summer camp for game developers. Teams spend two months in a forest working on their projects in peace and quiet. The camp is situated in the municipality of Dalarna, somewhere between the towns of Falun and Börlange. This all sounds completely ideal to me!
So, that was it. EGX 2016 has come to pass. It was an absolutely amazing event, and I'm sure that if you could have asked everyone who attended what they thought, their answer would be "amazing!" I was blown away by the sheer amount of talent exhibited in the indie area and, although I wasn't overly interested in the majority of AAA games, the bigger games were all very popular, but at the end of the day everyone who was there was happy and having fun doing what they love. All the indie developers I spoke to were fantastic, and so very happy to stand and chat about their game and put up with all the same questions over and over again. There was so much pride in the Rezzed section, and it felt fantastic!
Anyway, now I can look forward to EGX Rezzed in March 2017 where there will be much my indie goodness, sore feet and uber amounts of networking!