Fun Infused Games' Kris Steele, the man behind the acclaimed Hypership Out Of Control, has slammed Microsoft's recent Metro dashboard update, criticising the difficulty in even finding the Xbox LIVE Indie Games tab and suggesting that the update is responsible for leading to a perceived stagnancy in XBLIG market growth.Click here to read more...
This last week, I've taken an uncharacteristic break to prepare for E3 and get a cheeky bit of cheap sunshine thanks to a last-minute deal... but enough lame excuses [I thought we fired you? -Ed]. Whilst I've been separated from my console, my Windows 7 mobile has staunchly stayed within easy reach - so it's time to round up some of the best indie games to have supported the fledgling platform!
Well, after a little rant. Before last year's Xbox.com site redesign that included indie games into the browser marketplace, Microsoft rightfully took a lot of flak for failing to give these titles enough exposure. Unfortunately they've failed to learn from their mistakes, meaning that Indie games aren't hosted in the browser marketplace along with their Microsoft-published big brothers.
The upshot is that you'll need Zune (groan) installed to take advantage of the download links... and it took a fair bit of detective work using Bing's (groan harder) visual search to track them down. Prepare for an longer, angrier rant at a later date. I now return you to our feature presentation.
If Hypership Out Of Control looks familiar, it's because Fun Infused Games' breakthrough indie hit is no stranger to our Game Of The Week roundups. In fact, we rated it as one of the best XBLI titles of 2010... and it's now also one of the best games on Windows 7 phones.Click here to continue our mobile indie adventure! >>
2010 has seen its fair share of trials and tribulations for the burgeoning Xbox Live Indie scene, but it's been an incredible year nonetheless. Rather than just a pointless little diversion, Xbox Live Indie Games have demonstrated their worth as a genuine unique selling point for the Xbox 360 with a constant stream of fantastic quality titles at bargain basement prices. Quite frankly, they're a reason to buy a 360 in the first place!
So, for your delectation, here are the ten best Xbox Live Indie Games of 2010. Click the banners to try out the trial versions- and hopefully spend a few points! Each and every game on this list is worthy of your time, money and respect.
Playing Juggle is like discovering a lost arcade machine. Denki have spared no expense at making it an authentic retro experience, playing much like a fast-paced hybrid of pong and breakout. It's immediately accessible and exceptionally good fun to play... and as an added bonus, the developers are willing to donate the entire cost of the game to charity if you ask them to. A class act and a classy game to kick off the list!
B.U.T.T.O.N. defies description...and belief. It's one of the best party games ever made, challenging players to engage in hilarious physical activities and brutally unfair tactics in order to dominate their opponents. It's ridiculous, raucous and completely breaks the fourth wall at every opportunity. You won't have played anything like this. Ever.
Breath of Death VII is a traditional 8-bit RPG that pays a witty and hilarious homage to the original NES final fantasy games. Taking on the role of an undead superhero, you’ll quest, level up and dungeon crawl through hours of enjoyable dungeons that both mocks and emulates the classic RPGs of yore. The recently-released Cthulhu Saves The World is arguably a better game, but for setting the trend and laying the groundwork, Breath of Death VII deserves its place on the list.Click here to discover the best Indie Games of 2010!
Tired of mediocrity? Sick of cynical little avatar apps that drag down the public opinion of the Xbox 360's undersung unique selling point? So were a consortium of veteran developers. The Winter Uprising is their way of fighting back the only way they know how: by producing loads of awesome games.
The multi-tiered casual brawler (read: Super Smash Bros) is a genre that frequently makes an appearance on the Xbox Live Indie scene- with mixed success. However, Chu's Dynasty ups the ante by simply being one of the most professional ventures on the entire service, ever. The characters are nuanced and distinct (exhibiting wildly different fighting styles), and the combat provides hidden depths that belie the simplicity of the controls. It occasionally feels a little stolid, but when four players are involved, the sprawling battles are an absolute riot.
In terms of presentation, Chu's Dynasty is flawless. Painstaking watercolour art and haunting Japanese period music delivers a veritable feast for the senses. It's a masterclass in polish and perfection that would be deeply impressive as a full-price release.
Chu's Dynasty is masterful, beautiful and honed to a mirror-shine. The quality of the experience is nothing short of sensational, with production values that doom any number of XBLA titles to shame and humiliation. You'd be mad not to take advantage of this superbly polished masterpiece at a bargain basement price.
Read on for Decimation and Hyperships!
This week brings us three more fantastic games on the Xbox Live Indie service. We've got a twinstick shooter that practically redefines its genre, a co-op platformer with a groovy gimmick and some pure retro exploitation for your delectation. And they're all 80MSP.
Developer: Firestorm Studios
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to one of the finest twinstick shooters you'll ever play.
It's not as if we're short of a few twinstick space SHMUPS on the Xbox Live Indie service. Taking a leaf out of the Geometry Wars book, many bedroom devs see an easy way to make a quick buck by slapping a cheap gimmick onto an otherwise derivative . Abaddon: Retribution, however, adds more than enough genuine depth to turn the experience into a fully-featured space opera that just happens to feature a dual thumbstick input.
At first, the proceedings will be extremely familiar. Your cruiser (the titular Abaddon) needs to be defended from hordes of incoming enemy fighters. Each enemy yields 'green matter' that functions as both points and currency. So far, so unremarkable... except docking with the Abaddon pauses the action and grants you access to a bewildering array of new ships, weapons, turrets, and upgrades. These upgrades persist between missions, making the action akin to a fast and fluid RPG. The sheer range of armaments and equipment on offer is enormous, and adds a significant tactical depth that you'll rarely see on the service.Read on for more Abaddon and our other favourite Indie games of the week!