IndieCade is held in October of every year and hosts exhibitions, conferences and acts as a place for developers to meet with players and partners. Perhaps the biggest celebration as part of the event is the festival’s competition, which sees a fair few awards given out by the judges in categories like Trailblazer, Technology, Game Design, Interaction, Visual Design and many more. Every year, loads of games are submitted, and before they reach the judging panel, they are whittled down to a more manageable number, so this year, it’s 36.
Before we get on to the list of this years IndieCade finalists, you should also know about the Digital Selects, which are hand-picked games that will be exhibited at IndieCade. All of the finalists and 120 other games will be playable at the event, so this is just a glimpse at what’s there, but the following Selects are grouped together under the festival’s curation.
- 7 Grand Steps
- Color Zen
- Dominique Pamplemousse
- Gravity Ghost
- Outer Wilds
- Potatoman Seeks The Troof
- Project Holodeck
- Double Fine Mystery Game
- Tenya Wanya Teens
- Tower No Tumble
- Valdis Story: Abyssal City
- Word Realms
With that out of the way, we’re clear to look over the 36 finalists of this years IndieCade. As said, there are 36 of them, and they’ll be playable at the IndieCade, PlayStation, Nintendo, Ouya and Oculus Rift exhibits. All games are linked below in their title if you want to find out more information on any of them.
"[code] is a single-player computer game in which players assume the role of "@," a simple variable in the code for each level. The levels themselves are made up of psuedo-code, and players use hints that are placed in the comments to learn how some computer science principals work. This allows them to manipulate the code of the game, solve puzzles and eventually call the 'NextLevel()' function."
"Tiny Games are location-specific games that you play in the real world, using the things around you as a part of the game. We installed 99 Tiny Games on big posters all around London, three in each of the 33 boroughs, and made an app to make Tiny Games available anywhere."
"Constellation is an interactive art installation about creativity, myth and social collaboration in which players use a motion controller to navigate a projection of our night sky and create constellations."
"Cube and Star: A Love Story is a game about the joy of... aimless, but mindful wandering. Day breaks, grass grows, night falls, trees shed their fruit... and with every step, you stain the world."
"Deadbolt is a quiet pen-and-paper game about giving your most honest self to strangers. Players emerge feeling closer to each other, more open to the world and more accepting of themselves."
"Dog Eat Dog is a game of colonialism and its consequences. As a group, you work together to describe one of the hundreds of small islands in the Pacific Ocean, defining the customs of the natives and the mores of the outsiders arriving to claim it. The game begins when the war ends."
"In Edgar Rice Soirée, four players navigate a jungle of 20 hanging PlayStation Move controllers. Each player is assigned a color. Players need to activate controllers of their color by pressing any button. As long as you have two controllers activated, you're safe. If no controllers of your color are activated, you're eliminated immediately. If only one controller of your color is activated, you begin to lose life energy quickly. "
"Extrasolar is pioneering new gameplay and technology. Gorgeous images of the planet's surface are rendered in the cloud and delivered to the player every few hours, making each player's experience unique and raising the bar for the appearance and immersion of Web games."
"Ephemerid is a musical adventure game about insects, bugs and rock-'n'-roll. Help a Mayfly find its destiny in a world made of hand-cut paper, set to an original soundtrack."
"Explore a house to discover the story of the people who lived there. Go home again."
"Gunpoint is a side-scrolling stealth puzzle game about breaking into games in clever or noisily stupid ways: rewiring electronics or throwing yourself through plate glass windows."
"Take control of a hermit crab who warped herself to the wrong sector. To get her back home, the player will have to fight their way through a galaxy of hostile sectors in an improvised ship that is never more than a few hits away from falling apart."
"Kentucky Route Zero is a magical realist adventure game about a secret highway in the caves beneath Kentucky and the mysterious folks who travel it."
"Kulak is a tabletop dice game of chance and politics in which four or five players fight and negotiate over land. Set loosely in early 20th century Russia, each round of the game pits three to four Proletarians against a wealthy Baron."
"Luxuria Superbia is an ode to joy. A playful exploration of pleasure. Pleasure in life, pleasure in existing. A musical journey through stylized flowers. From the sensuous over the rational to the spiritual. Bring color to the temple of love. Bring beauty to the world!"
"Nidhogg is a head-to-head acrobatic fencing game where players compete for the right to be eaten by a giant flying worm."
"Other is an alternate reality sound game played in the real life city of Dundee, made in partnership with National Theatre of Scotland. What appears to be a straightforward audio tour through the City begins to take on a darker tone as your phone picks up strange interference and signals from your surroundings."
"Perfect Woman is a strategic dancing game for Kinect. Depending on how well the player's life decisions fit together, the performance will be more or less challenging."
"Pico is a 2D, multi-window puzzle adventure game. Our proof of concept is to take a traditionally annoying experience (the pop-up) and turn it into a useful, relevant and fun gameplay mechanic."
"Compilation of 10-25 minute experimental queer hypertext games made in Twine."
"In Quadrilateral Cowboy, navigate through security systems and corporate intrigue in a cyberpunk world. When you have a top-of-the-line hacking deck armed with a 56.6k modem and a staggering 256k RAM, it means only one thing: you only answer to the highest bidder."
"Reus is a 2D PC God game in which you control four giants that shape the surface and ecosystems of a planet. The goal is to develop human civilizations in harmony with nature, while their greed endangers everything."
"Rogue Legacy is a 2D platforming genealogical rogue-LITE where anyone can be a hero. Each time you die, your child will succeed you. Every child is unique. One child might be colorblind; another might have Tourette's. They could even be a dwarf. That's OK, because no one is perfect, and you don't have to be perfect to win this game. But you do have to be pretty darn good because this game is HARD."
"Combining the skill mastery and physics of pinball with the engagement of role playing games, Rollers of the Realm offers a new, yet familiar gaming experience. Collect an ensemble cast of unique, upgradable pinball characters and battle through board after board of an epic fantasy story."
"An experiment in metanarrative fiction via unconventional storytelling techniques or a game about having a relaxing dinner with a good friend? Can't it be both?"
"Designed with gamers of all ages and ability levels in mind, simian.interface has no time limits, no way to lose and no controls besides the mouse. Inspired by tabletop puzzles, modern art and cognitive psychology experiments, it presents challenges which must be solved using pattern recognition, intuition and experimentation, rather than reflexes or memorization."
"Sokobond is an elegantly designed puzzle game about chemistry. It's logical, minimalist and crafted with love and science."
"Soundodger is a game about moving through the music. Each level features hand-crafted choreography of bullet patterns that must be dodged in order to perform for the entirety of a song."
"Spaceteam is a co-operative party game for two to four players who shout technobabble at each other until their ship explodes. Each player needs a mobile device (phone or tablet)."
"Spin the Bottle: Bumpie's Party is a game for two to eight players. Players sit in a circle around the GamePad and spin a virtual bottle. Two players are randomly paired up each round to do a collaborative physical challenge by using the Wii Remotes and each other to dance, spin, grab, jump, hide, pump, pass and squeeze."
"Starseed Pilgrim is a game about tending a symphonic garden, exploring space and embracing fate."
"Super TIME Force is a high-octane pixel-art thrill-ride with the steering wheel of time in your hands!"
"That Dragon, Cancer takes place in a Children's Hospital. The players will relive certain moments in the ongoing three-year-long battle that Joel and his family are living through. This Children's Hospital is a place where the natural meets the eternal, and the real meets the surreal. "
"An archery combat platformer for up to four players. It's a local party game centering around hilarious, intense versus matches. The core mechanics are simple and accessible, but combat is fast and fierce. TowerFall is best played competitively with friends, crossed-legged on the floor within punching distance of each other."
"Upgrade Soul is an immersive digital graphic novel that tells the story of Hank and Molly Nonnar, wealthy science buffs who decide to fund a risky, experimental therapy to rejuvenate the human body, with only one condition: that they be first in line to receive it."
"Movers & Shakers is a two-player tablet serious game created as a research tool to explore how players communicate based on conflicting perspectives within the game. The aim of Movers & Shakers is to create a meaningful conflict between its players and to facilitate a controversy beyond the screens."