Indiecade 2016, The 9th Annual Indiecade festival has come and gone and it is time for reflection and adding more games to my “Must have list”.
Indiecade is the premiere international festival for independent games. Created by game designers from all walks of life, attendees experience the various games over four days. In between those games, are seminars, summits, conferences, and panels addressing a wide variety of topics such as diversity and game development. Held at USC this year, people were spread out across the USC Cinematic Arts Complex playing consoles, virtual reality, night games, table top, and more.
The festival is separated into several parts. One part will feature the games from Playstation, another part is sponsored by Intel with the Gaming For Everyone Pavilion, another part features the nominees up for awards, and so on. Every one is invited to come up and just play the game. Most of the time, the game designer is just right there, ready to guide and answer any questions. For anyone who seeks to design games, this festival is a golden opportunity to meet those who have and share thoughts. It is a festival where inspiration can come from a game, talking to a designer, or just by watching the reactions from those around you. Or if you just want a refreshing game to play.
FangirlNation has covered Indiecade for the past three years and no year is ever alike. Every time there is cry for more of this or more of that, the game designers featured at Indiecade have answered those and answered questions. Every year there is a game that this correspondent didn’t realize was ever missing in her life. Only the creativity and open environment stays constant. Every game designer has been more than happy to invite people to play their game. They have worked really hard on it and every single person is beaming.
This year, it was no surprise to see how virtual reality has grown. Last year, a lot of the focus was on Oculus Rift. Now the virtual reality game landscape has expanded into a room of its own. Those waiting to play the games could see what the player was seeing on the screen. From what I had glimpsed, they all look fantastic. Since motion sickness never strays too far when I attempt a virtual reality game, I sat this one out. No one seemed be hurling after playing the VR games , though, so improvements must have been made.
Of all the console games premiered, it was Earth Night that stopped me in my tracks. This hand painted 2D runner game was just stunning. Absolutely stunning to watch. It is set in an apocalyptic world where humans have been thrust out into space. It is up to Sydney and her friend Stanley to ride down the backs of space dragons to make their way down to Earth. This is an intense game where one slight mistake can send you reeling off. The graphics is just off the charts and I seriously cannot wait until this is released.
The console games were always a popular draw but the surprise game this year came from Threadsteading. Created by Gillian Smith, the game used a reverse engineered sewing machine to create a board. Each player raced to claim as many “town” squares as they could. The machine would follow the patterns and sew a design specific for that player. The whole game was so intriguing and easily nabbed curious eye balls everywhere. It is no wonder that Threadsteading claimed the Indiecade Technology Award this year. Other awarded games can be checked out here.
Once again, Indiecade was able to showcase games that made you think, expand the horizon, all the while you’re having fun. It was really great seeing so many different players coming together and enjoying the games. There is more to gaming and Indiecade is just one way to see that.
An overview of the Indiecade can be seen here:
Interviews with some of the game designers can be seen here:
- Courtney Chavez- Bread Quest
- Evan Hernandez- Trials of the Damned
- Gillian Smith- Threadsteading