Kevin went off into his own YouTube channel for Geek Asylum Studio and played through the entirety of Mighty No. 9 over three days and three live streams. Being part of the masses that backed this game, it’s only fitting that Kevin has to bear it out from start to end. After all, it can be said of all backers for the Mighty No. 9 Kickstarter;
If you were too busy with the main stream, here is your re-cap of Kevin and his wife raising money for the kids. There were BSoDs (four of them!), hard games (Brie takes on Super Meat Boy!), and some weirdness (Shower With You Dad Simulator is involved…on my mother’s requested games…D&D players, you know to word your wishes, right?). Also, Kevin and his wife are both sick with a communal cold (sorry about coughing and sniffles being audible). If you dare to watch this all, once Shovel Knight begins, jump to the final video (the second has the bulk of Shovel Knight, but skips the end, while the final video is only Shovel Knight after the final BSoD of the day, and includes our salutations).
Some of the games played include The Yawhg (twice), Super Mario World, Neverending Nightmares (at midnight, of course), Torin’s Passage, Super Meat Boy, Tiny Galaxy, Shower With Your Dad Simulator, You Must Build a Boat, Defy Gravity, The Fall, Love, Hatoful Boyfriend, Colonel’s Quest, Electronic Super Joy: Groove City, Pink Hour, Gunstar Heroes, The Static Speaks My Name, Mount Your Friends, Adventures of Pip, Half Minute Hero, and the surprise hit Battleblock Theater (played twice). Soma makes a surprise appearance (coupled with hidden BSoDs and errors).
We also are the only Extra Life stream for Infinite Lives Productions that includes two corgis who also stayed up most of the night with us! If you hear us call out “Ein” or “Bear”, that’s the corgi names.
The Second Half:
The Shovel Knight Ending:
Last of all, thanks to those who donated! You are all amazing. Infinite Lives Productions raised over $4000 (!) for Seattle Children’s because of you all! Before you give yourselves a pat on the back, pretend I gave you one. Feel that (pretend) pat and enjoy it. That’s for you.
Also, if you still feel like giving, follow this link. It’s good through the end of 2015. Just click the name of your favorite Infinite Lives Productions member and donate.
Step again into the shoes of Geralt of Rivia, a professional monster slayer, this time hired to defeat a ruthless bandit captain, Olgierd von Everec. This expansion to “The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt” packs over 10 hours of new adventures, introducing new characters, powerful monsters, unique romance and a brand new storyline shaped by your choices.
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt – Hearts of Stone launches on October 13, 2015.
For more information about The Witcher visit:
Buy now: http://buy.thewitcher.com
At PAX, Dan interviewed Chris Johnston, Senior Games Producer of Adult Swim Games. He was nice enough to give us a little insight into the process of going from online flash games into full on indie publisher.
A twin stick, 3D, arcade style, arena shooter with a hint of shmup.
**Yeah, I couldn’t come up with a more compact way to describe the game. I’d probably have that problem with Madden though, so forgive me.**
The story goes – your starship’s AI system has gone rogue and each of the ships’ management systems need to be defeated in order to regain control of your home.
You play as one of 9 selectable Android-ettes (4 at first before unlocking the rest through the game), each with their own look, personality and weapon capabilities. Each character has an unlimited ammo primary weapon, and a more powerful secondary weapon that requires recharge time between uses.
In terms of gameplay – you shoot wave after wave of enemies coming from any and all directions. Those enemies occasionally drop temporary power ups such as additional firepower, increased manuverability, and enemy system shutdown. The other thing they’ll drop once you’ve defeated a wave – and one of the more clever design bits in the game – are recharge batteries. In the game, you have a relatively small life bar, but you can always resurrect yourself after you pass out but hammering on the fire trigger – that is as long as your battery hasn’t died. Once that’s empty, it’s truly game over. More than once I defeated a wave only to watch my battery drain while looking at the battery refill on the other side of the stage.
Visually, the game is bright and cartoony – the androids have a chibi style to them and the game has a vibrant color pallete. That vibrancy and color pallete actually really reminded me of Burning Rangers on the Saturn (did anyone else actually play that game?).
Each stage is an arena of sorts, coming in many many shapes and sizes. Some have their own unique environmental hazards – things like conveyor belts, lasers, exploding platforms and so on. The designers did a great job of giving each of the zones and their various stages their own vibe that is reflected in the zones boss.
The bosses themselves are also well thought out – each AI system (construction, agriculture, security, etc.) has it’s own personality and look that vaguely correlates to their function. Boss battles are tough and it will take a few tries (or more) when you get to the harder stages; add to that the fact that certain androids may have a more effective fighting style against certain bosses. Try and try again – and again with a different android if that doesn’t work.
The game handles beautifully. Controls are tight and intuitive. It plays exactly like you’d imagine it would.
Graphics wise, I’ve not had a hiccup in my 5 hours of play. There are times where the entire screen is filled with enemies, bullets and explosions – and I’ve yet to have slowdowns or crashes.
Sound is another area where indie games sometimes get a pass – and again AAC needs no such handicap. While the music isn’t a symphonic masterpiece, it technoy soundtrack fits the arcade game feel and the few times you hear the character voices are done well. All of the audio fits the theme of the game.
Sounds awesome – so you’re wondering “does anything suck?”
Eh, not really. It’s nitpicking stuff.
Later in the game, at times there are just too many enemies on the screen – sometimes it makes you feel badass, but sometimes it just feels like there wasn’t a way to increase difficulty unless they just added more enemies.
To that effect, sometimes it’s hard to actually determine if/when you’re getting hit. The shmup effect is there, so you can see bullets, but when there is 20 enemies all stacked up the bullets don’t stand out so you end up dying and you’re not always sure why.
In the end, the game moves fast enough that none of these are insurmountable or have you lingering on a particular stage needlessly, but I’m someone who likes to leverage the shmup aspect and it just wasn’t something I was able to do at times due to sheer volume.
So should you buy it?
Do you like twin stick shooters? Then yes. I haven’t found too many satisfying experiences in the genre in the last few years, and this one ranks up there alongside the first time I played Geometry Wars on the 360 many moons ago.
If you’re MEH on the genre, then give the demo a try for sure. You might find yourself wanting to keep playing just because it’s that fun.
So there you are. A twin stick shooter that’s so highly polished to the point that it’s almost hard to believe that it’s wasn’t developed by a dev team of 50 instead of 3.
We didn’t really take any time to break down the experience at PAX this year (honestly we didn’t really have much time afterwards), so I’m going to go back through and highlight some of my experiences.
In this case – Wattam.
I remember watching coverage of E3 and seeing the Wattam trailer. My soul knew exactly what I was looking at; some kind of Katamari friendship/pyrotechnics simulator. Every fiber of my being was urging me to find this game and acquire it. Hunter/gatherer instincts peaked. Unfortunately by the end of the video, it was clear that the game was not available for purchase.
In order to continue functioning in the real world, I buried the acknowledgement of Wattam existing into the depths.
Fast forward to PAX – we are surveying the indie game landscape conducting interviews and I happen upon a familiar site. My world explodes with a vibrancy and color I haven’t experienced since….E3. Wattam is available to demo. By people. Human beings.
Hey. I’m one of those two things.
In the game, you play as a series of characters based on caricatures of real life objects such as a cloud, a coffee bean, a record player, etc. (except for the mayor, he’s just a square green blob). You’re given interpersonal puzzles to figure out with the goal of making friends with characters based on available abilities of friends you’ve already made. As Takahashi-san says, it’s a game about connections. Creating those connections (and the rewarding happy explosions you’re treated to afterwards) provides a unique kind of satisfaction – it’s something you’ve really never experienced before and probably never will again outside of this game.
Go ahead and try to explain to me the feeling you get when you cheer up a weeping pillow.
The icing on the cake was the chance to meet Keita Takahashi and record an interview that Dan did with him. He even signed a Wattam shirt for me, taking the time to draw a few characters from various games. I don’t get star struck per se, but in Katamari Damacy I found a new kind of joy and fun that video games rarely provide anymore, so I spewed out an incoherent thank you of sorts.
So, here’s the interview Dan did – it’s short but sweet as Takahashi-san was constantly kept busy by a steady stream of people who recognized him, but it’s one that I’m particularly happy to have been a part of.
Polychromatic is a minimalist twin stick shooter with an emphasis on physics and gameplay, and (IMO) a spectacular soundtrack. I planned on playing 15-20 minutes, but ended up playing around 2 hours once I was up and running.
The game releases on 10/2, plan on checking back with us for a full review around then.
After a much maligned failure to launch the demo (without even touching the rest of the launch/kickstarter issues), we now have the official (for now) release date for MN9……….
February 9, 2016 for us ‘Mericans (and North America in general), and February 12 for the rest of the world.
I was able to download the demo and get it running on Friday (instructions were less than…..clear) and I recorded the first 10 minutes of my experience.
The game plays like Mega Man (SHOCKINGGGGGGG /s) but does have it’s own aesthetic and charm that only looks mostly like Mega Man.
Jokes aside, the game does play really well and does seem to have the polish of a Mega Man game. The absorb/temporary power boost feature is pretty cool and the updated graphics are nice to look at (although I do miss the hand drawn look of the last few MM). We will see if the game as a whole holds up similarly, but it’s hard to imagine them going off script so far as to somehow ruin the experience. It’s basically what we’ve all wanted for a few years now and Capcom, in their infinite wisdom, has decided we don’t deserve.
While I am still looking forward to it, I have been a little put off by the delays and lack of communication. I’ll play, I’ll enjoy, but the stigma attached to the game by the Kickstarter trials and tribulations will be part of it’s lore. FOREVER.
Jon finds out about Chasm, an upcoming Metroidvania style game at PAX Prime 2015 from one of the artists on the dev team. The game play footage shown is Jon facing his limited mortality minutes before the interview kicked off.