It’s time for another indie game bundle! This time, it’s the developer-centric Reddit GameDev bundle.
The GameDev Bundle is a pay-what-you-want indie game bundle. All proceeds will go towards the hard working developers of these games, the bundle organizers, charity, and other game related projects. The GameDev Bundle continues the pay-what-you-want model recent bundles have used. Pay any price and the games are yours.
These are completely unique games that have not been featured in any recent indie bundles. I have played through each of these games and I can safely say, they are well worth your time. Included among this bundle are the six games below.
Developed by E. McNeill
Available on Windows
Auralux is a simplified RTS game where you control a blue star and try to take over all the other stars in a system. Notice I used the word simplified? Well, instead of having to control over a dozen different types of units, you only have 2 units; the star and the particles of light which spawn off the star. The idea here is you start out with a small star and must spread your star’s light throughout the area while combating other colored stars. Auralux is the bare minimum, but it works well.
There are up to 24 maps to play through in Auralux that can be played through normally or on speed mode (everything moves faster). And considering how challenging later maps can be, speed mode will add a little more challenge into the mix. Visually, there’s not a whole lot to chew on here. Aside from the layout, each map looks the same and the music is the same for each one. Though, when you’re busy trying to beat a level for the umpteenth time, those things aren’t the main worry.
Overall, Auralux is something I’d recommend to those who are new to the RTS genre of games. Not to say veterans will not like it, but the gameplay is simplified enough for anyone to get into and provides enough challenges that it kept me (an occasional RTS player) interested.
To download the demo or acquire more information on Auralux, visit Auraluxgame.com.
Developed by: Bit Barons
Available on Windows and Mac OSX
You are the Astroslugs, an evil alien race looking to leave their home planet and conquer the universe. No, these aren’t the brain slugs from Futurama, but they do have similar goals. In order to leave the planet, you must gather up enough energy in order to move your spacecraft from location to location. You gain energy by painting the globes of your ancestors, the slugballs, located in each stage of the game. How this turns into fuel for a space craft, I have no idea.
Each stage shows a slugball outline that needs painting, using the patterns given to you. Connect all the right patterns to the outline and that completes the level. Astroslug has 44 puzzles to play through with a few bonus levels that will make your brain want to cry. So the answer is: Yes, you will be busy with this one.
Astroslugs reminds me of Popcap games like Peggle and Plants vs. Zombies. It has a distinct personality which separates it from other games and has enough content to keep you busy. Just check out the demo if you don’t believe me!
To download the demo or acquire more information on Astroslugs, visit astroslugs.com.
Developed by Rat King Entertainment
Available on Windows
Remember the arcade-style dungeon-crawlers in the 1990s where you could only move in four directions on tiny blocks? Or just creating your own adventure with the dungeons and dragons board game? Well, Pitman will be a delight because it relives exactly that.
The game revolves around you being a dwarf searching through this dungeon for treasures while battling monsters and upgrading your characters stats. Pitman is a reminder of what it used to be like playing RPGs and dungeon crawlers. You build up your basic stats of strength, dexterity, and intelligence and further upgrade stats like weapons, health, mana, speed, block, and dodge. Want to be a thief? Upgrade dexterity, blade, and speed. How about a mage? Upgrade intelligence and mana.
There isn’t much of a story outside of what I said, which could’ve helped for motivational purposes. Still, there is a lot of replay value here in the customization of your stats alone and it may be enough to forgive the lack of story content. If you’re really into RPGs and have an imaginative mind to make up a story, give Pitman a try.
For more information on Pitman, visit pitman.ratking.de.
Girl with a Heart of
Developed by: Bent Spoon Games
Available on Windows and Mac OSX
Heart of what? Yeah, that’s what I kept on thinking when I first saw the name. Thankfully the game explains fairly quickly why the title ends abruptly. Girl with a Heart of (GWH) is an adventure game taking place in Underfoot, a subterranean city inhabited by the Dark race. You play as Raven, an eleven year old girl separated from her parents after an attack by the Light race army. Immediately I loved this because the Dark people are the protagonists and typically in games dark = bad and light = good, but not in this instance.
The story is definitely the best part as you can play through multiple times and get different experiences depending on your choices. The characters are very interesting and you’ll find yourself going back and looking in on specific people just to make sure they’re ok. Otherwise, the graphics are pretty and neat in their stylized look. The soundtrack is relaxing and the developers were kind enough to offer it for free to download on Bent Spoon Games website.
My major gripe with GWH is actually the combat part of the gameplay. I found it very picky at times when I wanted to do a specific action. For example I’ll be pressing the W key to use an attack and it’ll take time to register. Maybe I’m doing it wrong, but if I am the game didn’t do a great job in explaining that to me. This is particularly annoying as some story outcomes can be affected by your reaction speed in combat. Otherwise, the game is fine.
For more information on Girl with a Heart of, visit bentspoongames.com.
Developed by: Blanket Fort Games
Available on Windows
Like Auralux, Influence is a simplified RTS game, but with a more creativity-centric focus. Using your mouse cursor, you move around an id that is used to absorb neutral ids or enemy ids into your collection. The point of the game is to adsorb other ids to create songs. If you win, you get to hear your song at the end of the match. If you lose, you hear one of the other id’s songs. So it’s a win-win regardless because you get unique music out of it!
The best part of Influence is being able to customize it to your liking. The settings vary depending on your input. Do you want the game to be peaceful/relaxing, intense/brutal, or something in the middle? It’s all up to you as you can change the amount of enemy or neutral ids you have on screen, how much points you can spend on your stats, the skill of the enemy ids, and various other settings which will change up the look and feel of the game. The color of your id changes the sound of your song, so that alone can change the feeling of the game alone.
There are both offline and online modes available to play, but at the time of writing this I wasn’t able to try the online portion. However, I can see the potential to have fun with the multiplayer possibilities. Influence may not be for everyone, as it is an experimental and creative game. But if you like music, customization and pretty colors, Influence is worth checking out.
For more information on Influence, visit playinfluence.com.
Developed by: Ido Yehieli
Available on Windows, Linux and Mac OSX as well as most smartphones
We continue our trek back in time with Cardinal Quest; Another arcade-style dungeon-crawler and the bonus item in this GameDev Bundle. Whereas Pitman is a 3D dungeon crawler, Cardinal Quest keeps things old school 2D. The presentation takes the retro-style and runs with it, keeping true to dark colored 8-bit maps and monsters. The story is traditional and cliché, but takes a back seat to the gameplay so little focus is placed on it.
The gameplay is what you would expect; you can choose to be a warrior, mage, or the thief, with warrior being the easiest to play and thief most difficult. The game is pretty easy to get into for newbies, but inventory management can be a hassle and the difficulty is not something to be taken lightly as enemies get tough real fast. Also, it’s permanent death, so after you lose all your lives you will have to start over. There are no save files other than when you exit the game.
Repeat playthroughs are a must, as you will find yourself playing through different characters and trying to beat your top level or floor reached. While some may not like the lack of customization in this one, those who wish to see what old dungeon crawlers were like or relive those games with a modern should experience. Cardinal Quest.
For more information on Cardinal Quest, visit cardinalquest.com.
Overall, I would say this bundle is well worth the investment. While not all the games may pique your interest, they each provide their own uniqueness to this bundle. Into RTS games? There are two to choose from in Influence and Auralux. Want a casual game to play over the weekend? Go help out some Astroslugs. Have the nostalgia itch for a dungeon crawler? Go mine some treasure with Pitman or fight monsters in Cardinal Quest. In need of a good story? Play through Girl with a Heart of. Plenty of choices for whatever price you wish to pay.
Buy the bundle over at GameDev Bundle page.
Article by Tyler Klepsch