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OnPoint
Member
(12-01-2011, 02:20 PM)
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November started out kind of weak, but it turned out to be one of the strongest months on the service in a while. VolChaos coming out on the last day really made choosing the Gold Award tougher than I thought it was going to be, especially since a surprise contender seemed to have it all-but-locked up.

Timeout real quick: I just want to say thanks to Toythatkills and that, if his account is truly perma’d, he’ll be missed in this community. I think it’s a shame that his constant hard work and dedication is overshadowed by one comment, and I really hope someone out there rethinks and repeals the ban. Chances are he learned his lesson and I hope someone gives him the opportunity to show that.

Moving on to the thread…

You can buy any of these games via xbox.com by clicking the link associated with each game, or on the Games Marketplace on your Xbox 360. Simply enter the marketplace and scroll up to Indie Games, where you can check the top rated titles, the games that have just come out, or “browse” to find the games mentioned in this thread. Indie Game trials last eight minutes, which is often enough to establish what you think about it. Even if you don’t buy any of these games, at least trial them, tell people what you think, get more people trying them.

Go. Play. Enjoy. Tell us what you think! Tell all your friends! Get them to tell all their friends…

(Xbox LIVE Indie Games are available in Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom and the United States. If you’re outside those countries you can still play these games by setting up a Gamertag for free for one of those countries. It’s worth doing.)



The Gold award, for the absolute best game that came out last month.



FunInfused Games snuck into November and stole the Gold from a very worthy and unlikely contender. I believe that Volchaos and Hidden In Plain Sight are equally great games, that is, their starkly different concepts are equally well realized. But VolChaos is the more accessible game, and therefore gets the nod.

It’s clear that a lot of time went into making sure VolChaos was a polished experience, from the jump physics to the pixilated retro graphics. Having the lava level raise from the bottom of the screen up is a novel idea that effectively replaces a time limit, plus it opens the door for creative puzzles that involve temporarily lowering it as well. The levels are simple enough for the layman looking to waltz through, but getting the gems in every level showcases how talented designers can complicate a seemingly basic set of platforms.

If you’re not playing VolChaos to collect the gems, you’re simply doing it wrong. Whether they’re hidden to the left when you should be going right, or placed directly under a Thwomp Trap-esque enemy, you’ll likely need to chart a course before grabbing them all and execute it flawlessly, lest it become lava-bath time.



There is a good deal of trial-and-error at play here but the fast respawn times negate much of the irritation that comes with that. Some of the levels are a bit hard to deal with at the beginning since you can move or are sometimes moving before the screen pops in from being black, which is something I hope Kris and the guys at FunInfused address in a patch. Falling into a bed of spikes right from spawn is not enjoyable 40 times in a row – you’re never quite sure when to press over on the stick. Sometimes you miss the opportunity and fall straight down, while others will send you careening all the way to the right into a wall of spikes instead.

It’s largely the only thing I have to complain about in VolChaos though. There are 42 levels, each with a hard mode to tackle, and the soundtrack is great. It’s a Gold award game that truly earns the distinction, and FunInfused should be proud of what they’ve accomplished.



The Silver award, for games that are incredible, but hey, only one game can be the Gold award winner. In any other month, any of these could have earned it!



If the 30th never happened, Hidden In Plain Sight would have ran away with the Gold. What we’re left with is an incredibly good Silver recipient. You may have ignored this one because it’s multiplayer-only and the graphics lack flash or pizzaz (plus, it kind of looks like a twin-stick in the pictures), but I promise you that it’s worth getting a few friends together to give this one a run.

The game is played by two or more players. The first mode is the perfect introduction to the concept. The screen is filled with identical ninjas. You and your friends are somewhere in this crowd. It’s up to you to locate yourself in the crowd without giving your position away. The goal is simple – touch each of the five statues before your opponents do, or kill the other players. It’s a very simple concept that opens the door for four other creative modes.

There’s a Knights Vs Ninjas gametype, where the ninjas need to kill the royalty before being snuffed out themselves. The Knights are a bit slower so they’re penalized for being too aggressive – it’s best to stay by the targets and protect them that way – while the Ninjas do best to blend in with the crowd and avoid suspicion. There’s a mode where players try to collect coins while others try to locate and pick them off with a sniper rifle. Death Race is also a fun mode. The goal is to reach the finish line before everyone else, but each player has a one-round sniper rifle. Stick out like a sore thumb by moving too far ahead of the pack and you run the risk of getting shot. It’s just a ton of fun and like nothing I’ve experienced.

Here’s the deal: If you’re apprehensive but interested, I have five copies to give away. PM me if you’re interested. I will gladly give one to you, but if you ask for one please come back in this thread and discuss it with us. You’re likely going to have a lot of fun with this one in a group.

=================



DLC Quest is a platformer that plants its tongue firmly in its cheek and lampoons the industry’s obsession with breaking game content down and selling it off in chunks. Nothing in DLC Quest comes free, and in order to see the end, you’ll have to pay again and again. And again.

The game is a relatively basic platformer with little challenge, and it can be completed in about 30 minutes. You basically explore the world to find coins, then buy the next ability to progress. Rinse. Repeat. It handles nice enough, but its humor is the real draw. The dialogue is crisp and on target and the descriptions of what you’re buying will elicit at least a chuckle every time. Its relatively strong reception got many people interested in a sequel, but I feel like it would only serve to damage the novelty of what’s already here.

=================




Magical Time Bean rarely disappoints – both Soul Caster games were incredible – so the fact that Escape Goat is as good as it is should come as no surprise to anyone. It’s a puzzle-platformer with some incredibly unique elements.

The goal is to guide the goat through the levels, eventually saving all of the lost sheep. This should help you escape from the dungeon in which you’ve been trapped. You’ll need to push switches to change the level layout by walking over them or jumping into them. There’s also a rat that you can send through spaces too narrow for your fat goat body to squeeze through, which can climb on walls and ceilings as well. The puzzles require some intelligence to complete and the graphics are, as always is the case with MTB projects, a stellar blast from the past.

=================



Flowrider is one of the slickest games in terms of presentation on the XBLIG service thus far. It’s also a pretty cool little racer as well.

The top-down action is controlled not like an RC car, but like a dual-stick shooter. It’s intuitive once you get it down. The AI is only challenging in a few of the later levels, but the multiplayer should give this one some legs if you have friends who are into this sort of experience. I would have loved to have seen a behind the back view because the setting is so striking, but it unfortunately didn’t come with one.




The Bronze Award, not the best games out this month, but every one of these is still either great, or has a really unique aspect to it that more than makes it worth trying.

Growing Pains is the latest effort from Smudged Cat Games (The Adventures of Shuggy) and it’s a neat little title. Your character is constantly growing, so you need to escape the level before becoming too big. The next level is always bigger than the previous one, so you’re free to complete the level as you continue to grow. Time is a factor because of your constant expansion, so it’s best to get through as fast as possible. It’s a really clever platformer.

ElfSquad7 is an interesting concept. You control a Christmas-themed sprite whose job it is to put falling toys into present boxes and collect them. The game supports up to four players at once and the retro graphics are incredible. The music is a bit wanky and there’s a weird issue where the performance takes a hit during the use of a special attack, but it’s certainly worth a look.

3D-Struction plays a lot like Super Glove Ball on the NES. It’s capable of displaying the game in 3D (which I sadly couldn’t experience without a 3D set), which might help with the game’s depth problems in the 2D mode, but it’s still fun playing Arkanoid from the front facing angle. Using both analog sticks in some levels is a nice touch.

Red Tie Miner is a pretty good little mining clone. The addition of hazards to watch out for – like rockslides or emptying pools of water – means you have to actually be mindful of how and where you dig. It’s becoming something of a tired genre, but this one isn’t bad at all.

Zombusters is the most unique twin-stick shooter I’ve played in quite some time. The faux-isometric setting and decent feeling gunplay give this a different feel than the horde we’re accustomed to seeing (which is addressed below). There is a pretty diverse selection of music from what sounds like real bands as well. It’s definitely something worth a trial attempt. A friend and I played all 8 minutes in co-op.

Oozi Earth Adventure Episode 2 is more of the same action you found in the first episode, but with a bit more challenge and a lot less new stuff to experience. It’s absolutely gorgeous but it won’t change your opinion on whether or not you liked it before.



Some games are bad. Really bad. So bad that they don’t even deserve a functioning link to the Xbox LIVE Marketplace. But if you’re in the mood for some punishment, or just want to be reminded how much better the games above are, check these out, last month’s most terrible games.

“Games” like A Day At Gmas House In Winter shouldn’t be allowed on the service. Remember those vinyl playsets where you could peel the pieces off the sheet and put them on a background? This is pretty much that. It’s being marketed at young kids, but the interface is confusing and the effects are eye-meltingly awful. If I want to make it snow that badly I’ll just go into the bathroom, hang my head over the sink and scrub my scalp. You’d be better off teaching your kids to do the same than play this.

Pumpkin Smasher is far and away the worst game on the service this month. It’s like an Angry Birds ripoff, if Angry Birds had next to no obstacles to contend with. The graphics are pitiful with super weird glitches that run up the screen and there is absolutely no sound at all.

I’m of the mindset that the developers of Zombie Slaughter is Fun, Claustrophobia and Rise of the Mummies all seem to be cut from the same. Exact. Cloth. That cloth is I MA3D A GA3M W1TH Z0MB13Z 1N 1T!1!11!! (or however it’s spelled). Can we please stop with these? They’re so damned awful.

UK Regions & Counties is not a game. It’s a really poor version of an encyclopedia program from 1994. Windows 3.0 in my public library was better at what this game is doing. Is there really a demand for this sort of software on an Xbox?
Last edited by OnPoint; 12-01-2011 at 02:24 PM.
OnPoint
Member
(12-01-2011, 02:21 PM)
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Previous threads, where all the older stuff lives:

The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of October 2011 | No GotM
The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of September 2011 | The Fall of Gods
The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of August 2011 | Train Frontier Express
The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of July 2011 | Protect Me Knight
The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of June 2011 | Rainbow Runner
The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of May 2011 | Sequence
The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of April 2011 | LaserCat
The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of March 2011 | Solve It - Pack 1
The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of February 2011 | Ninja360°
The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of January 2011 | Bonded Realities
The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of December 2010 | Score Rush
The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of November 2010 | The TEMPURA of the DEAD
The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of October 2010 | radiangames Fluid
The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of September 2010 | Hypership Out of Control
The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of August 2010 | Gravitron 360
The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of July 2010 | PLATFORMANCE: Castle Pain
The best Xbox LIVE Indie Games of June 2010 | Old School Racer
The (old) XNA Indie Games Official Thread

Releases this month by date:

November 1st

Moon Miner

November 2nd

DLC Quest
Escape Goat
Cat Saber
StarBeam
Moe Mekuri 2.5 萌めくり2.5
World Wars II
Devilsong

November 3rd
Jawsome

November 4th

StarCatcher
Claustrophobia
Pumpkin Smasher
3d Pixel Art Studio

November 5th

RE: Get To School On Time
Flowrider
Zombusters
Bobby

November 8th

Iron Core
Robot Platformer 2
Snake 2

November 9th

Distortion King
Castleminer Z
Growing Pains
Masters of Influence

November 10th

You're All Diseased!
Zombie Slaughter Is Fun

November 11th

Firing Range
Invasion

November 13th

Gemologist

November 15th

Whos the Daddy (now MIA)

November 17th

Red Tie Miner

3D-struction

November 18th

Hidden In Plain Sight
Perkuna’s Dragon: Episode One

November 19th

Canyon Viaduct

November 21st

Angry Zombie Ninja Cats

November 22nd

Itza

November 25th

Itza
Star Defender
Oozi Earth Adventure Episode 2
Temple of Dogolorak

November 26th

Ultimate Polygon
Rise of the Mummies

November 27th

A Day At Gmas House In Winter
UK Regions Counties
Zombies, Zombies Everywhere

November 28th

Nanosquad
Turbo Rocket 2

November 30th

Volchaos
Nemo
Will Eat Your Children
(12-01-2011, 02:25 PM)
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Heh, DLC quest cracked me up. If only they made it with real money, I'm sure people would still buy it all

I'll definitely get Volchaos some time soon
Stumpokapow
listen to the mad man
(12-01-2011, 02:28 PM)
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Escape Goat is incredible. I would probably give it the game of the month last month over Volchaos. It feels like a Genesis game, for some reason. I think it's the music and the gothic font and the weird premise. I'm stuck half-way through the final world. Huge huge recommendation, every mechanic works, it's gorgeous, I would love to see it get a PC port so people could really make use of the level editor. Excellent. I'd give this an "A".

Volchaos is pretty excellent. I've got 100% gems and just have 2-3 levels left in Expert mode. I loved the boss. The text quips are funny. Well worth $1. I'd give this an "A".

I have three main complaints, since I'm sure the devs want the feedback: 1) Like you mention, deaths at the beginning of the stage/after a respawn sometimes seemed impossible to avoid. 2) Sometimes I get in a position where I can't complete the level but I haven't died yet, and it'd be nice to have an always-active fast restart button instead of requiring me to suicide or wait to respawn. 3) That one vertical stage (#38 or so?) with the three levels of invisible blocks is a dumb idea. I actually don't mind the invisible blocks in other stages because they're always obviously connected to the gems you see in mid air--encouraging a "leap of faith", which is cool--but in the stage where they're part of the traversal, it's just annoying trial and error.

Oozi 2 is more of the same, but the stages feel a little longer. I agree with your ranking, bronze is appropriate, it's good but it's not amazing. I'd give this a "B' or a "B-"

DLC Quest was very funny. I did a playthrough for some friends last week and noticed a few things on the second playthrough that I missed on the first. If it were longer it'd probably get annoying, but as is it's a great premise. I'd give this an "A".

Not sure I bought anything else in the last month. Hoping to check out ElfSquad7 today. Forgot all about Growing Pains--Shuggy was awesome so I'll give that a shot too.
Emerson
May contain jokes =>
(12-01-2011, 02:44 PM)
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As someone who's been a critic of XBLIG there are actually several games here that intrigue me. I'll be trying several out.

Not to derail, but what did toythatkills do?
FunInfusedGames
Banned
(12-01-2011, 02:59 PM)
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Some of the levels are a bit hard to deal with at the beginning since you can move or are sometimes moving before the screen pops in from being black, which is something I hope Kris and the guys at FunInfused address in a patch. Falling into a bed of spikes right from spawn is not enjoyable 40 times in a row – you’re never quite sure when to press over on the stick. Sometimes you miss the opportunity and fall straight down, while others will send you careening all the way to the right into a wall of spikes instead.

Thanks for putting together a great thread! Very very happy you enjoyed Volchaos, it's great when months and months of hard work are appreciated.

As for these complaints, both will be addressed in an update, likely somewhat soon. I'm assuming the falling on spikes issue is level 31... My plan is to start you a bit higher up so that you still fall but it's more manageable where you land. I also need to fix it so you cannot move / gain momentum before you can officially "move", if that makes sense.

There will be a few other minor tweaks to levels, adding an on/off toggle for the map, and I'm gonna see if I can move the map into the corner just a little more.

Volchaos is pretty excellent. I've got 100% gems and just have 2-3 levels left in Expert mode. I loved the boss. The text quips are funny. Well worth $1. I'd give this an "A".

Glad to hear you enjoyed the boss... I wasn't sure how that'd play out, as the boss level is VERY different from any of the other levels in the game.
uncledonnie
Member
(12-01-2011, 03:00 PM)
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Originally Posted by Stumpokapow

Escape Goat is incredible. I would probably give it the game of the month last month over Volchaos. It feels like a Genesis game, for some reason. I think it's the music and the gothic font and the weird premise. I'm stuck half-way through the final world. Huge huge recommendation, every mechanic works, it's gorgeous, I would love to see it get a PC port so people could really make use of the level editor. Excellent. I'd give this an "A".

Yeah Escape Goat is easily the game of the month for me. I tried the demo and could not bring myself to stop playing until I completed the game. The gameplay is very smooth, everything is really polished, and overall the game just oozes charm. One of my favorite games on the service so far.
FunInfusedGames
Banned
(12-01-2011, 03:01 PM)
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Not to derail, but what did toythatkills do?

Not sure the exactly comment, but I think he made some kind of joking / sarcastic comment that the mods didn't like and they banned him. Which is a shame, he was very active in all these XBLIG discussions and put a ton of effort into writing so many of these threads.
TripleBGames
Junior Member
(12-01-2011, 03:07 PM)
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Hey! Thanks for the silver guys!
OnPoint
Member
(12-01-2011, 03:31 PM)
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Three codes left for Hidden In Plain Sight.

I should mention that Hidden In Plain Sight is local multiplayer only. But again, I have three copies available

Originally Posted by FunInfusedGames

Thanks for putting together a great thread! Very very happy you enjoyed Volchaos, it's great when months and months of hard work are appreciated.

As for these complaints, both will be addressed in an update, likely somewhat soon. I'm assuming the falling on spikes issue is level 31... My plan is to start you a bit higher up so that you still fall but it's more manageable where you land. I also need to fix it so you cannot move / gain momentum before you can officially "move", if that makes sense.

There will be a few other minor tweaks to levels, adding an on/off toggle for the map, and I'm gonna see if I can move the map into the corner just a little more.



Glad to hear you enjoyed the boss... I wasn't sure how that'd play out, as the boss level is VERY different from any of the other levels in the game.

You should update the box art with the GAF Gold award haha
Last edited by OnPoint; 12-01-2011 at 05:03 PM. Reason: Got a code back, clarification
Ventron
Member
(12-01-2011, 03:41 PM)
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Poor toy :( He really helped me out with my previous titles, especially awarding Gold to Bonded Realities.

I know Avatar games have a bad reputation, but I decided to make one just like Kris did with Trivia or Die. Incidentally, it is also a trivia game, but a very different design. It's a board game sort of like Mario Party. It's online, too.

http://marketplace.xbox.com/games/me...5-d802585509ff

(Also, I've hidden a code for the game in this post)
FunInfusedGames
Banned
(12-01-2011, 03:55 PM)
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Sweet, trivia games rock. There is a very, very really possibility me and your game will be spending some time together Friday night.
OnPoint
Member
(12-01-2011, 05:08 PM)
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I played a good deal of Orbitron Revolution last night. It feels so much like an XBLA game in terms of presentation and graphics it's sickening. I had a slight issue with the enemies and your ship not standing out enough... it all kind of blends, especially when moving fast, but that's the graphical style. Regardless, it's absolutely gorgeous.

I'm not too sure the gameplay resonated with me, however. The controls feel good and the action is fun, but I just couldn't get into the task at hand. Maybe I just have to adjust to it not being a normal shooter and it will click. Flying around the ring defending the gates is a tough task, especially since your boost fills so slowly (picking up items from downed enemies does this). You have to do it for five minutes to unlock the last mode, but my best time was 4:30. I'll eventually get there, I'm sure.

Also, Dragons Vs Spaceships released today. The dev said it's best played co-op

Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nf7zp5e4EkQ

Link: http://marketplace.xbox.com/en-US/Pr...5509fe?cid=RSS
898
Member
(12-01-2011, 05:47 PM)
Hidden in Plain Sight looks a lot like Spy Party. Do not blindly youtube spy party
I will definitely check it out when I get home.
qupe1975
Junior Member
(12-01-2011, 05:56 PM)
Hmm first impressions of both Orbitron and Volchaos

Volchaos I kinda found annoying, the respawing was not instant and took a couple of seconds so I was looking at a black screen during this time and the game just didn't grab me, didn't feel smooth for some reason.

Orbitron is a lovely looking game but the demo is the 3 min mode and it didn't grab me as it's not frantic enough. It felt like a version of defender but with no real risk involved. I think this is where the 8 minute demo kills it because 2 plays and your forced to decide purcahse or exit. Hmmm.

I will give them another go but initial impressions are non purchases.
Gaspode_T
Member
(12-01-2011, 05:59 PM)
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My mind is blown that Orbitron wasn't picked up as an XBLA game, it's easy on par with any 800 point XBLA game. For 240 pts it's a steal.

The graphics are some of the best I've seen in any downloadable game, smooth and slick and stylish.

The gameplay I am also having a hard time hitting 5 mins in Guardian mode but I am happy it's not too easy. I think it will take some time to figure out the tricks to this one, if you use the jump gate things with the right timing it will probably help out a lot. I think this game is truly like an old school arcade game with a super slick coat of paint (meaning like Forza 4 level of paint).
Gaspode_T
Member
(12-01-2011, 06:00 PM)
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Originally Posted by qupe1975

Hmm first impressions of both Orbitron and Volchaos

Volchaos I kinda found annoying, the respawing was not instant and took a couple of seconds so I was looking at a black screen during this time and the game just didn't grab me, didn't feel smooth for some reason.

Orbitron is a lovely looking game but the demo is the 3 min mode and it didn't grab me as it's not frantic enough. It felt like a version of defender but with no real risk involved. I think this is where the 8 minute demo kills it because 2 plays and your forced to decide purcahse or exit. Hmmm.

I will give them another go but initial impressions are non purchases.

The Guardian mode is waaaaaaaaaaaaaay more frantic than the countdown mode (countdown only gets hard in later waves) and if you break 5 mins in Guardian it unlocks a third mode I have no idea what it is
qupe1975
Junior Member
(12-01-2011, 06:09 PM)
I know Orbitron looks gorgeous. Just most purchases are based on the trial and at present it didn't make me want to purchase. That's sad because I know the effort that had gone it this game and Fun Infused.

I personally think the trial mode is the issue for me with these games at the minute.

I am not sure if my download of Volchaos was being choppy or not. Was annoying me. I will delete it and redownload it.
SAB CA
Sketchbook Picasso
(12-01-2011, 06:14 PM)
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VolChaos (Trial) Tidbits: (Copying from Nov Thread)

GREAT!:
  • Animation and overall feeling. Very well done! A joy to look at and listen to.
  • The Stage setup and timing seems well worked on. Theres a lot of "skin of your teeth!" moments.
  • Your game seems very well built around the controls, and I think this is very important, and was aced well.
  • Nice work with the mini-maps before selecting a stage, those little details are the kinda thing that make a game easy to play and enjoy.

ODD?:
  • The jumping DID take some time to get used to. It wasn't intuitive out of the box, because his acceleration felt... odd. Almost like he ramps up in speed too fast? It's easy to adjust to, however.
  • You can start moving BEFORE the screen fades back in from a death. DOH! This leads to easy "I'm ready to hold right!" start up moments ending up in instant lava death.
  • When crossing the finish line, the main chara crosses, pauses in mid air while the game saves, and then instantly appears a few feet forward, doing his victory jig. It just looks a bit clunky, but it's a MINOR nitpick overall.
  • You have these nicely topped and rounded-off tiles for the foreground, but the BG tiles end in sharp, boxy edges. It's another minor thing, but given that the rest of the BG work looks so nice overall, I just find it slightly jarring.
  • Why is there a bounding box around the main title screen? It's not anywhere else... can the game be resized on that screen? just feels a bit unnecessary.
  • I wish the "VolChaos" title was in pixel art too, rather than looking like a blurry, upsized JPEG. It kinda clashes with how crisp everything else looks.

BAD?!
  • Nothing... really! For 80 points, I think you've put out a very polished, quality work. For 240, I'd think the same, lol.

I'll probably buy the game in a few days, but a lot of DLC coming up that I wanna factor in first :) But I think the game lives up to the wait and previews, so great work!

Gotta try out Orbitron soon.. oh, and did Grand Class Melee totally fly under people's radars? I rather like it's class system, and I think the game would be a major buy if they added something in like a mini-quest mode or something. The fondation and everything felt fery solid, and playing 2 player local VS CPU was fun, especially trying to find all the interesting mods per skill tree, and seeing how well-developed the class system was.
Gaspode_T
Member
(12-01-2011, 06:15 PM)
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I forgot to mention that Orbitron did Code 4 on me the first time I tried to play it. It didn't repro second time I loaded it.

Volchaos is a little bit choppy when it first loads I think. If you don't like speed run/insta death type games at all it's probably not your thing though...
FunInfusedGames
Banned
(12-01-2011, 06:43 PM)
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When crossing the finish line, the main chara crosses, pauses in mid air while the game saves, and then instantly appears a few feet forward, doing his victory jig. It just looks a bit clunky, but it's a MINOR nitpick overall.
You have these nicely topped and rounded-off tiles for the foreground, but the BG tiles end in sharp, boxy edges. It's another minor thing, but given that the rest of the BG work looks so nice overall, I just find it slightly jarring.
Why is there a bounding box around the main title screen? It's not anywhere else... can the game be resized on that screen? just feels a bit unnecessary.
I wish the "VolChaos" title was in pixel art too, rather than looking like a blurry, upsized JPEG. It kinda clashes with how crisp everything else looks.

Moving before the level starts will be fixed in the first patch.

The jitters is part of the save process for saving deaths, awardments, highest level reached, ect. I've got the saving on a separate thread but even still any IO operations to the hard drive or memory card causes slowdown. Game either needs a brief "Saving" screen or somewhere you'll get a jitter. Given that the player isn't doing anything they can die from at this point, I opted for jitter. On PC there is no jitters. Was that the best choice, I'm not sure. I'll ponder it once again.

At some point I may do something to adjust the backgrounds. I do have some top tile pieces for some of those.

Someone on the other thread asked about how working w/ eWorkProxy was... they've been great. Fair prices and generally quick work, good quality stuff. Artwork makes a big difference in your game, I think especially when it comes to just getting people to try your game.

Volchaos I kinda found annoying, the respawing was not instant and took a couple of seconds so I was looking at a black screen during this time and the game just didn't grab me, didn't feel smooth for some reason.

I heard one other person complain of choppyness... I haven't seen it on my Xbox. I'm not sure what's up with that. I would expect 1 Xbox to be the same as the rest.
Last edited by FunInfusedGames; 12-01-2011 at 06:51 PM.
OnPoint
Member
(12-01-2011, 06:52 PM)
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Every time I saw this enemy I thought of this

FunInfusedGames
Banned
(12-01-2011, 08:12 PM)
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It's uncanny! LOL
Stumpokapow
listen to the mad man
(12-01-2011, 09:22 PM)
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Okay, where the hell is the mystic fun sloth? :(
FunInfusedGames
Banned
(12-01-2011, 09:23 PM)
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@qupe1975 - Check out this video... is saving slow like that for you? Saving on my Xbox is literally a half second, but on this video it definitely takes a few seconds. I can see how that'd be annoying, especially on a respawn.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z1eztjlS_-Q

Anyone else that's played Volchaos do chime in too. Thanks!
FunInfusedGames
Banned
(12-01-2011, 09:24 PM)
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@Stumpokapow - SPOILER ALERT - Here's a hint... It's on the upper left corner of one of the levels.
GhaleonEB
I hate the headlines and the weather
(12-01-2011, 09:30 PM)
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I haven't been following XBLIG for a few months, so I didn't know Magical Time Bean had a new game out. Will definitely check it out, Soul Caster I&II are among my favorite games on the service.

Is Toy gone for good? :(
Last edited by GhaleonEB; 12-01-2011 at 09:32 PM.
d+pad
Member
(12-01-2011, 09:51 PM)
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Just downloaded the trial version of Escape Goat. Loved it -- its Genesis-esque aesthetic, especially -- and definitely will be buying the full version this weekend :)
Warm Machine
Member
(12-01-2011, 10:03 PM)
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Extra Mode unlocks if you can survive 5 minutes in Guardian Mode.

The mode is a Survival Mode where you get 1 life and the enemies don't stop coming. The screen can almost completely fill with stuff to shoot. With that, loads of power cells are released so you build wave bombs and powershots reasonably quickly.

Btw, the highscore boards work more or less like Geowars where you can see the guy who's score is right above yours. When you pass that guy, the next guy shows up and so on. Thing is, you need a gold account for this to work. Wish we could have ha it hooked up for Silver but MS and XNA doesn't work like that.

Thank you for the comments. All I can suggest is that you keep playing. Getting to Waves above 7 things will start to get crazy in Countdown. Wave 10 and 11 is nuts. I've personally never gotten past Wave 12.
qupe1975
Junior Member
(12-02-2011, 12:20 AM)

Originally Posted by FunInfusedGames

@qupe1975 - Check out this video... is saving slow like that for you? Saving on my Xbox is literally a half second, but on this video it definitely takes a few seconds. I can see how that'd be annoying, especially on a respawn.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z1eztjlS_-Q

Anyone else that's played Volchaos do chime in too. Thanks!

Yeah mine is similar to that if not a little worse. It was frustrating the hell out of me as it was eating into the time trial too. I haven't redownloaded it yet though to test again. I'll try again tomorrow.
FunInfusedGames
Banned
(12-02-2011, 02:25 AM)
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Are you saving to a hard drive or a memory unit or flash drive?
qupe1975
Junior Member
(12-02-2011, 10:41 AM)

Originally Posted by FunInfusedGames

Are you saving to a hard drive or a memory unit or flash drive?

my hard drive. I ll redownload it today. I am also going to make sure nothing is going on in the background too, like other downloads. I ll try it both ways.
Noogy
Member
(12-02-2011, 11:17 AM)
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Originally Posted by FunInfusedGames

Thanks for putting together a great thread! Very very happy you enjoyed Volchaos, it's great when months and months of hard work are appreciated.

Oh, I didn't know you were on these boards, Kris! Congrats on the Volchaos win... very well deserved!
qupe1975
Junior Member
(12-02-2011, 01:18 PM)
Unfortunately the save issue is still there. It's more of a pain when restarting a level as you might be slightly unprepared when it loads/restarts which means precious time is lost. Level 11 was especially annoying me when it went to a black screen.

I have purchased the game and will do the same with Orbitron now. However, for me - with Volchaos, those annoyances are there because of that save issue. It's 3-4 seconds before I respawn, every time.
qupe1975
Junior Member
(12-02-2011, 02:05 PM)
Orbitron further comments.

The game is beautifully presented.

The 3 minute mode I would have started off a bit more frantic, making for bigger runs and more edge of the seat/messy pants score challenges. I know it starts getting busier by level 8 but a minute can be wasted on the slow stuff.

I have only played the guardian mode 3 times and just had a time of 4.52 which was close to opening up the next mode. If the option was available I would have had this in the trial, limited to 2 minutes or something just to show the extra mode off.

An explanation about the power-ups would have been useful too, unless I am missing that.

I would recommend this to shooter fans, especially those who like Defender type games. This and Doppleganger being the best two in this field (defender style clones) on Xblig.
FunInfusedGames
Banned
(12-02-2011, 02:46 PM)
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Oh, I didn't know you were on these boards, Kris! Congrats on the Volchaos win... very well deserved!

Thanks! Yeah, I've been on here for a little while. Would have been sooner but it takes a while to get your account approved.


Unfortunately the save issue is still there. It's more of a pain when restarting a level as you might be slightly unprepared when it loads/restarts which means precious time is lost. Level 11 was especially annoying me when it went to a black screen.

I have purchased the game and will do the same with Orbitron now. However, for me - with Volchaos, those annoyances are there because of that save issue. It's 3-4 seconds before I respawn, every time.

Thanks for the info. After every death, I just went ahead and saved the game. That way if you quit (power off) in the middle of a game, you wouldn't lose any progress (mostly in terms of Awardments and number of deaths). I have an Xbox Slim model and this happens pretty much instantly, so I saw no downside. This is coming as quite a surprise to me that yourself and a few others are experiencing such slowdown.

I started last night on the first patch. With this patch, I will remove this "save on death" thing and only save when you finish a level and when you quit from the pause menu. You will be able to power off and lose progress but I think it's worth that tradeoff. You shouldn't experence any slowdown / delay when respawning.

Since I'm talking up the update, I'm also tweaking levels 10 and 31, I've added a slight delay after respawning before you can move (gives you a better chance to get ready and prevents you from accidentally moving if you were just moving when you died), and I'm experimenting with a sort of traffic light display for notifying you when you can start moving. I'm hoping I can push this out next week.

If you have other ideas for tweaks, improvements to the game, please do let me know.
FunInfusedGames
Banned
(12-02-2011, 02:51 PM)
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I played the trial of Growing Pains. I really like the concept but honestly I don't think the trial showed me much. It seems like I just got some of the basics down and then it was over, I would have liked to see at least 1 or 2 real levels. I've seen videos of the game in action that seemed a lot cooler. I want to get into the fun stuff and I don't feel like the trial had enough to really sell me or others on the concept.

The box art needs work too, not very good. I know these guys can do better box art from what I've seen of their other games.
OnPoint
Member
(12-02-2011, 04:05 PM)
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Originally Posted by FunInfusedGames

I played the trial of Growing Pains. I really like the concept but honestly I don't think the trial showed me much. It seems like I just got some of the basics down and then it was over, I would have liked to see at least 1 or 2 real levels. I've seen videos of the game in action that seemed a lot cooler. I want to get into the fun stuff and I don't feel like the trial had enough to really sell me or others on the concept.

The box art needs work too, not very good. I know these guys can do better box art from what I've seen of their other games.

The concept is definitely the best part of the game. It's honestly not that challenging a platformer on default difficulty (and isn't that hard on medium either), though I can't speak to the quality of the trial. The box does suck... but honestly, the whole artstyle kind of does.

Trials for XBLIG games lately have kind of sucked in general. The trial for Snake 2 (LOL) lasts like 30 seconds before it locks itself out. I guess giving people 8 minutes of Snake would probably nullify any need to buy it, though.
OnPoint
Member
(12-02-2011, 04:57 PM)
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Holiday tidings! Ishisoft's Johnny Platform Saves Christmas has been dropped from 240 points to 80. It is also now free on the PC.

Here's a trailer for the game: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dJYvD...layer_embedded

Also, only one copy of the excellent local-multiplayer only Hidden in Plain Sight remains available for free. Send this guy a PM to get it.
FunInfusedGames
Banned
(12-02-2011, 07:27 PM)
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For those experiencing slow saving in Volchaos or other Xbox games, I've been able to confirm (for one person at least) that the problem goes away if they save to a flash drive instead of the hard drive. I'll still do my best to improve this in Volchaos if you want to use a hard drive, but you may make your like easier all around if you pick up a flash drive too.
Warm Machine
Member
(12-02-2011, 08:21 PM)
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Originally Posted by qupe1975

Orbitron further comments.

The game is beautifully presented.

The 3 minute mode I would have started off a bit more frantic, making for bigger runs and more edge of the seat/messy pants score challenges. I know it starts getting busier by level 8 but a minute can be wasted on the slow stuff.

I have only played the guardian mode 3 times and just had a time of 4.52 which was close to opening up the next mode. If the option was available I would have had this in the trial, limited to 2 minutes or something just to show the extra mode off.

An explanation about the power-ups would have been useful too, unless I am missing that.

I would recommend this to shooter fans, especially those who like Defender type games. This and Doppleganger being the best two in this field (defender style clones) on Xblig.

Thank you for your comments!

Trials are damned if you do, damned if you don't thing. We more or less uses the same trailer idea that Pac-Man CE and GeoWars 2 did using their timed game modes to show off the game. It gives you a finite start and end point with an escalating difficulty depending on how well the player does.

We really could have made Guardian the trial mode in the end. A player would get one full game and a bit out of it if they were good at it.

I do wish we would have used the red ship as the trial one however as it sticks out more from the background. If we do an update I may actually swap it back around.

If anyone wants to see how the game can escalate in the 3 mintues I suggest watching my Countdown mode runthrough...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=78sMpepJPI8

I have another one I'm going to do for Guardian Mode that has some pretty crazy moments in it. I'll let everyone know when it is up!

BTW, I made this for NeoGaf back in the day as I know we love GIFS. Tell me if it is too big however...

Last edited by Warm Machine; 12-02-2011 at 08:27 PM.
barkers crest
Member
(12-02-2011, 08:27 PM)
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Originally Posted by Warm Machine

If anyone wants to see how the game can escalate in the 3 mintues I suggest watching my Countdown mode runthrough...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=78sMpepJPI8

Wow the game looks so awesome when you watch someone good at the game play it.

In other unrelated news...uh...err...am I still in last place on the leaderboards? :-)
OnPoint
Member
(12-02-2011, 08:30 PM)
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Originally Posted by Warm Machine

Thank you for your comments!

Trials are damned if you do, damned if you don't thing. We more or less uses the same trailer idea that Pac-Man CE and GeoWars 2 did using their timed game modes to show off the game. It gives you a finite start and end point with an escalating difficulty depending on how well the player does.

We really could have made Guardian the trial mode in the end. A player would get one full game and a bit out of it if they were good at it.

I do wish we would have used the red ship as the trial one however as it sticks out more from the background. If we do an update I may actually swap it back around.

If anyone wants to see how the game can escalate in the 3 mintues I suggest watching my Countdown mode runthrough...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=78sMpepJPI8

I have another one I'm going to do for Guardian Mode that has some pretty crazy moments in it. I'll let everyone know when it is up!

BTW, I made this for NeoGaf back in the day as I know we love GIFS. Tell me if it is too big however...

[IMGhttp://firebaseindustries.files.wordpress.com/2011/06/neogaftest01.gif[/IMG]

Wait, are you detonating bombs?

Edit: Oh, I see, those enemies explode when killed. I need to give that game more attention.
Warm Machine
Member
(12-02-2011, 08:34 PM)
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Originally Posted by OnPoint

Wait, are you detonating bombs?

Edit: Oh, I see, those enemies explode when killed. I need to give that game more attention.

Yeah. That or fill up one of the two power meters all the way so it is red and press Y for a Wave Bomb attack (not seen in this gif but seen in the Youtube Vid)

Originally Posted by barkers crest

Wow the game looks so awesome when you watch someone good at the game play it.

In other unrelated news...uh...err...am I still in last place on the leaderboards? :-)

Nope! Someone else took your spot today.
DaveVoyles
Member
(12-03-2011, 02:01 AM)
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I'm playing Orbitron right now, and damn, is this game pretty.

I wish I had more time to review games, but my crazy work schedule this month doesn't really give me any time. I'm onto VolChaos and ElfSquad7 next.

I played a lot of Last Dragon Standing last month and really enjoyed it. It starts off slow, but after a few minutes you get the hang of it, and it turns itself into a really interesting party game. Kind of like that deck hockey game a lot of us would play with small sticks as child. But with dragons.
SAB CA
Sketchbook Picasso
(12-03-2011, 02:08 AM)
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Well, I've now joined the Orbitron Leaderboards.... ;-)

Quite a solid game! Makes me remember playing Sidearms on my TG16, or Transbot on Sega Mastersystem. Simple to play, get in, have fun, and get out of. Bits all the correct bells and whistles very well, and I love how detailed the mini-map is.

Minor note, I DO wish there was a timebar under the score multiplier, to let you know how much time you have before it drops back down. And maybe some little light-up buttons under the power bar, to let you know when each option (speed, Powershot, Bomb) were ready. Just sems like there should be something to make it more obvious. If you skipped the how-to-play, or missed the first screen notes, you wouldn't even know you had such options from gameplay...
Warm Machine
Member
(12-03-2011, 03:13 AM)
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Originally Posted by SAB CA

Well, I've now joined the Orbitron Leaderboards.... ;-)

Quite a solid game! Makes me remember playing Sidearms on my TG16, or Transbot on Sega Mastersystem. Simple to play, get in, have fun, and get out of. Bits all the correct bells and whistles very well, and I love how detailed the mini-map is.

Minor note, I DO wish there was a timebar under the score multiplier, to let you know how much time you have before it drops back down. And maybe some little light-up buttons under the power bar, to let you know when each option (speed, Powershot, Bomb) were ready. Just sems like there should be something to make it more obvious. If you skipped the how-to-play, or missed the first screen notes, you wouldn't even know you had such options from gameplay...

It takes 50 power cells to get a Wave Bomb or Power Shot. When you have enough the space in the HUD will turn red.

Turbo is always available if you have any power (in blue) at all. You burn 4 power cells per second of sustained thrust.

Good idea about the Multiplier timer. There is a audio cue after 2 seconds or whatever passes that drops it back to 0. If we do an update we will look at that.
OnPoint
Member
(12-03-2011, 05:58 AM)
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Originally Posted by FunInfusedGames

@Stumpokapow - SPOILER ALERT - Here's a hint... It's on the upper left corner of one of the levels.

Found it. Def found it.

You are tricky, sir.

Don't highlight this if you don't want it ruined.

Level 22
DaveVoyles
Member
(12-03-2011, 05:30 PM)
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Joystiq interviewed the dev behind the spy party-eqsue Hidden In Plain Sight today:
http://www.joystiq.com/2011/12/02/th...n-plain-sight/
Emerson
May contain jokes =>
(12-03-2011, 08:11 PM)
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Last night I finally managed to get a friend so I could play some Hidden In Plain Sight (thanks to OnPoint for the code).

I've definitely been a critic of XBLIG in general but this game is great. It does exactly what an Indie Game should do: It has a great idea and it accomplishes it. Indie Games will never truly impress with their production values so attempting to is somewhat of a lost cause. This game has a simplistic graphical style that gets the job done, and some nice music, but most importantly it has a great core concept and it's fun as hell to play.

We played all the modes at least a few times and they're all fun. I can't remember the names at the moment to discuss them specifically but after I get some more time to play I probably will. I think this would be even more fun with more players.

Fully recommend this game to everyone.

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