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January 23, 2018
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Updates » Indie
Q&A: Depicting administrative evil in The Shrouded Isle  
by Joel Couture [11.03.17]

The Shrouded Isle places players in the role of a high priest, it's up to them to choose sacrifices, suss out sinners, and keep a vicious god contented, doing so through merciless, cold choices.
Console/PC, Indie, Video


Postmortem: Building The Turing Test around a secret mechanic 2
by David Jones [11.03.17]
"Our most unique central mechanic could not be shown in marketing, reviews or previews because the mechanic is tightly integrated with the story." - David Jones, design director of The Turing Test.
Console/PC, Indie, Design, Production, Business/Marketing, Video

Dev Q&A: How Bloober Team created 'hidden horror' in Observer  
by John Harris [11.02.17]
Observer is a cyberpunk horror game from Polish studio Bloober Team. They stress that it isn't a survival horror experience--they prefer to call it "hidden horror" or "catharsis 2.0."
Console/PC, Indie, Design, Video

Video: How game developers define 'success' for themselves  
by Staff [11.01.17]
At GDC 2017 researcher Dana Ruggiero gives a talk (based on interviews with over 50 notable game makers, from Brenda Romero to Davey Wreden) on howgame developers define success for themselves.
VR, Console/PC, Social/Online, Smartphone/Tablet, Indie, Video, Vault

Opinion: When Big Oil attacks your game 7
by Katherine Cross [11.01.17]
In Thunderbird Strike, which draws on Anishinaabe and Mtis imagery, you play a thunderbird who gathers lightning to destroy pipeline building equipment. One Big Oil exec labeled it "eco-terrorism."
Console/PC, Indie, Design, Business/Marketing, Video

How Cuphead nailed the look and feel of classic 1930s cartoons 2
by Willie Clark [11.01.17]
Cuphead's uncanny recreation of classic 1930s toons isn't just about art style. The game captures every element of the source material, from fonts and technical imperfections to scratches on the film.
Console/PC, Indie, Art, Video

Video: Juggling the chainsaws of work-for-hire vs. original projects  
by Staff [10.31.17]
At GDC 2016, ClutchPlay Games' Amy Dallas tackles the practical realities ofbalancing work-for-hire projects vs. developing original IP, and what she & her team have learned from doing it for years.
Smartphone/Tablet, Indie, Business/Marketing, Video, Vault

Opinion: Playing the Night Witches tabletop RPG with 16 people  
by Katherine Cross [10.31.17]
Night Witches is an RPG about an all-woman WWII-era Soviet night bomber regiment. Despite subpar equipment and no small amount of sexism, they terrorized the Nazis all across the Eastern Front.
Indie, Design

PSA: This is your last week to submit talks for the GDC 2018 Tutorials!  
by Staff [10.31.17]
The deadline to pitch talks for the Board Game Design Day closesWednesday, November 1, while the deadline for the Level Design Workshop the Tools Workshop, or eSports day closeFriday, November 3.
VR, Console/PC, Social/Online, Smartphone/Tablet, Indie, Serious, Programming, Art, Audio, Design, Production, Business/Marketing, GDC

Dev draws flak for making a game about resisting oil pipelines 8
by Alex Wawro [10.30.17]
The political fire around Thunderbird Strike is a good example of the pushback devs should be prepared for when making games with themes & messages that might run counter to interests of major powers.
Indie, Video

Don't Miss: Level design, player orientation, and the art of the chase in Outlast 2  
by Joel Couture [10.30.17]
Outlast 2 comes alive when players are being chased through the dark game world. It has to feel chaotic, yet intuitive. When you make it too obvious, some players start to feel theyre on a track.
Console/PC, Indie, Audio, Design

Video Game Deep Cuts: Mario's Half Million Daily Runs  
by Gamasutra Staff [10.29.17]
Some of this week's article/video highlights include a tech breakdown of Super Mario Odyssey, a very solo Steam dev who's sold half a million copies, and the culture of 'daily runs' for games.
VR, Console/PC, Social/Online, Smartphone/Tablet, Indie, Programming, Art, Audio, Design, Production, Business/Marketing

Itch.io adds support for distributing games to Patreon backers  
by Alex Wawro [10.27.17]
Notably, this should streamline the work of providing games, game dev tools, or other creations to Patreon supporters, and give devs who use Patreon a more centralizedway to track that distribution.
Console/PC, Indie, Business/Marketing

Blog: Data, graphs, and takeaways from a survey of 200+ Steam devs 8
by Staff [10.27.17]
Game developer Lars Doucet shares the results (replete with oodles of useful charts and graphs) of a recent survey of 200+ registered Steam devs about their thoughts on the platform.
Console/PC, Indie, Business/Marketing

Video: Applying entrepreneurial skills to be a better game dev  
by Staff [10.27.17]
At GDC 2017, game industry vet Jason Della Rocca offers advice on everything from leading a team to securing funding to marketing your game and keeping your head straight throughout the whole process.
Console/PC, Indie, Business/Marketing, Video, Vault

How watching people play Dead Cells 'incorrectly' influenced its designers  
by Alissa McAloon [10.27.17]
Game designers create with elegance in mind, while players are more likely to opt for efficiency. Here's how Motion Twin tweaked Dead Cells after players ignored some of that design elegance.
Console/PC, Indie, Design

Dev Q&A: A Mortician's Tale challenges how games depict death 2
by John Harris [10.27.17]
"It's really important for us to find the correct amount of accuracy versus comfort. It's very different to read about a thing, and imagine it, and directly interact with a dead body."
Console/PC, Indie, Design, Business/Marketing, Video

Crafting a fun, varied combo system for brawler Deadbeat Heroes  
by Jack Yarwood [10.26.17]
Two former Lionhead devs who loved to play brawlers on their lunch hour went indie, and crafted the beat 'em up Deadbeat Heroes. They discuss how the combo system came together with Gamasutra.
Console/PC, Indie, Design, Video

Devs push back on Patreon's 'clearer stance' regarding adult content 9
by Alex Wawro [10.25.17]
This week a group of Patreon users published an open letter pushing back on Patreon's recent public update regarding how and when it decides whether an 'adult' project can use its platform.
Indie, Business/Marketing

Blending visual novel and sanity meter in Tokyo Dark  
by Joel Couture [10.25.17]
"We're big fans of the Call of Cthullutabletop game. Tracking Sanity, Professionalism, Investigation and Neurosis (SPIN) came directly from our experiences with many forms of tabletop role playing."
Console/PC, Indie, Design, Video