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January 17, 2017
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Updates » Indie
How a Soviet secret police escapee came to make a survival driving game  
by Alex Wawro [11.29.16]
"Definitely a significant event [in my life] was our escape from, at that time, totalitarian Czechoslovakia in 1984,"  3D artist-turned-game developer Ondřej Švadlena recently told Kill Screen.
Indie

GDC 2017 launches low-income free Expo Pass program  
by Staff [11.29.16]
These complimentary Expo Passes awarded via the Low Income Pass Lottery are intended for participants who would otherwise not be able to attend GDC without considerable financial assistance.
VR, Console/PC, Social/Online, Smartphone/Tablet, Indie, GDC

Meditation and game design meet in this GDC 2017 talk on trance states  
by Staff [11.29.16]
SoundSelf dev Robin Arnott will give a talk on "Designing a Trance: Meditation and Game Design" at GDC 2017 next year that promises to touch on games' potential future as digital psychedelics.
Console/PC, Indie, Design, GDC

How Thumper got its turns on track  
by Alex Wawro [11.28.16]
"In the beginning I was pretty down on perfect turns," Thumper dev Brian Gibson tells RPS in a new turn-focused chat. "Over time it grew on me and I realized that it does make the game better."
Indie, Design

Get a job: Heart Machine is hiring a Gameplay Engineer  
by Staff [11.28.16]
Heart Machine is seeking a Gameplay Engineer to craft code for character movements, NPC interactions, scripted sequences, enemy combat, environmental interactions and much more in Culver City, CA.
Console/PC, Indie, Programming, Recruitment

Don't Miss: Writing Firewatch, and capturing the beauty of being alone 3
by Staff [11.28.16]
"People go to Wyoming because they’re captivated by the beauty and the aloneness. Growing up in there creates certain feelings inside you that you don’t really get rid of for the rest of your life."
Indie, Art, Design

Revisiting Cibele: Playing with the connections we create through tech  
by Joel Couture [11.28.16]
A year after its release, we look back on what this intensely personal game about a youthful online romance has to say about the bonds that we form with one another via technology.
Console/PC, Indie, Design, Video

Video Game Deep Cuts: Zelda in Shenzhen Westworld  
by Gamasutra Staff [11.27.16]
The latest Video Game Deep Cuts, picking the smartest longform video game articles and videos of the week, examines classic Zelda, contemporary Shenzhen I/O, & Westworld's VR experiment.
VR, Console/PC, Social/Online, Smartphone/Tablet, Indie, Programming, Art, Design, Production, Business/Marketing

Blog: 6 PR lessons learned from launching an episodic indie game  
by Gamasutra Community [11.25.16]
To celebrate this week’s launch of Episode 2 of The Lion's Song, we want to share some episodic-specific PR lessons we learned from supporting developer Mipumi Games in launching Episode 1.
Indie, Business/Marketing

Q&A: Ocelot Society on building Event[0] around an AI chatbot 3
by Thomas Faust [11.25.16]
"The game was supposed to be survival horror. We iterated on it, and after playtesting, it became apparent that we should just focus on our core chatbot mechanic and build everything else around that."
Console/PC, Indie, Programming, Design

Come to GDC 2017 and learn to craft better sex scenes in games 3
by Staff [11.24.16]
At GDC 2017, narrative designer Michelle Clough will explore challenges that come with crafting believable, meaningful sex scenes in games. It promises to be a great talk, so don't miss it!
Console/PC, Indie, Design, GDC

Mixing life management sim with beat 'em up in Honey Rose 3
by Joel Couture [11.24.16]
This "life management simulation presented as a visual novel with beat’em up segments" allowed its developer to comment on the prioritizing and balancing he was grappling with doing in his own life.
Console/PC, Indie, Video

Blog: Why indie devs should work with producers 10
by Gamasutra Community [11.23.16]
In this blog, Nicholas Laborde of Raconteur Games discusses the vital role of producers in a small team setting.
Indie, Production, Business/Marketing

Don't Miss: The unending clash between story and violence in games 49
by Simon Parkin [11.23.16]
In this timeless feature, writer Simon Parkin explores why game writers craft sophisticated narratives when they're often rendered moot by the sheer murderousness that the gameplay requires.
Console/PC, Indie, Design

Blog: The financial reality of being indie and doing just okay 13
by Gamasutra Community [11.23.16]
"Indie dev doing okay but still struggling" probably isn't a story the press would care for but it's still a story many indie devs can probably relate to.
Indie, Business/Marketing

The challenges and rewards of designing local multiplayer games 12
by Phill Cameron [11.23.16]
We talk to the developers of Super Pole Riders, Overcooked and Spaceteam about the appeal of developing a local multiplayer game, and the benefits over taking your game online.
Console/PC, Smartphone/Tablet, Indie, Programming, Design, Production

Tracing the evolution of game writing, from System Shock to Tacoma  
by Alex Wawro [11.22.16]
"'We have no idea how to do a believable conversation in a game,'" recalls System Shock dev Warren Spector. "That was when the decision was made to kill everybody on Citadel Station."
Console/PC, Indie, Design

100+ devs unite to sell a bundle of their work & donate all proceeds to charity 2
by Alex Wawro [11.22.16]
Itch.io has begun selling A Good Bundle, a pack of up to 151 games, game dev tools and other intriguing creations, with all proceeds being split equally between the ACLU and Planned Parenthood.
Indie, Business/Marketing

Chris Taylor has left Wargaming to start an indie studio 2
by Alissa McAloon [11.22.16]
The game development veteran known for his innovations in the RTS genre is leaving triple-A games behind as he sets his sights on indie development.
Console/PC, Indie, Design

Get smart, cost-effective indie game marketing & PR tips at GDC 2017!  
by Staff [11.22.16]
In his GDC 2017 talk, indie game PR/marketing expert Chris Dwyer will arm indie developers with limited financial, mental and time budgets with good (and efficient) marketing & PR strategies.
Indie, Business/Marketing, GDC