Every year, PAX East has such a wide variety of games to check out and see that you would be hard pressed to try everything. I took a ton of photos so I could remember which games I wanted to check out when I got home, and here’s the lineup of games that I thought looked worthwhile.
Gnog by KO-OP and Sam
The game from what I could gather was a series of rooms that were the backsides of heads/faces. Every face turns around and presents you a level, with a series of puzzles you have to solve. Looking at the website, it seems as though some of the heads go together to create a larger piece of the puzzle. Really intriguing
Holobunnies (kickstart it!) by q-bit
A 2D side scroller, but with BUNNIES. Join these little pixelated munchkins while they fly their ship around space exploring planets, saving other bunnies and finding a new place to call home. I got to watch the play for this and I thought it was decently interesting, the art style is a mix of old and new with the touch of pixel, and challenging boss fights.
Deadwood: The Forgotten Curse (kickstart it!) from Steamroller Studios
You play as a little wooden teenager with a giant rock golem defending you, and during the night a bunch of “Deadwood” or wooden zombies, come and attack you for your “sap” which keeps you alive. During the night you have to setup traps and barriers to help protect yourself and your golem who apparently doesn’t function at night (but you need to play the game to find out why) and survive. Art style is bad ass, and the game play looks very smooth. I hope this gets kickststarted, it looks like it would be a lot of fun to explore the worlds and play through.
A horror game with no guts or screamers? The people at the booth described it as a horror game that’s on par with Alfred Hitchcock or David Lynch. They even had Oculus compatibility at the booth, so I’m bummed I didn’t stick around to try, but I am certainly intrigued, seeing as the gore and jump scare tactics are reasons I can’t play horror games to begin with. Some of the game play shows a car about to hit a 16-wheeler at night (when of course, the scariest of accidents happen) and what I saw of the demo, you’re walking around an abandoned building of somesort. After watching a lets play of Outlast, I don’t know if I can handle any more “abandoned” anythings.
Slash Dash from Nevernaut Games
A multiplayer ninja game, using teleporting and slashing. A party game with 4 different game modes. While I don’t know what those modes are from the demo video, the sound effects are pleasant and fun, the gameplay being from an aerial view is a neat change of pace/reminiscent of bomberman maps & the play looks fast paced, so always be on your guard for your opponent ninjas about to sneak up and slash you somehow. The patterns and art style of the game are nicely balanced, with the level environment being a little more detailed than your characters, and from what the video shows, the background is either keeping time or score for you in a very subtle way.
Looking forward to seeing how this game develops.
Kwaan from ankama
According to their little sheet, it’s an online RPG, with some pixel editor capabilities. What I got from the booth was that you are a little “Dwaal” nature spirit, doing little daily challenges to appease the tree god Kwaan. You can summon other animals, explore and craft flowers, but what I’m not entirely clear on is why it can’t be an offline game. I would love to solo my way through this game, because I’m anti-social sometimes. 😉 I asked the rep there, and he said well it’s designed to be able to pop on and offline fairly easily, so I guess I’ll have to check it out myself. The art style being all pixelated totally sold me, and nature spirits is very Miyazaki, so I’ll have to give it a play.
We Happy Few from Compulsion Games
Wow the trailer for this looks great. Set in 1960’s “retrofuturistic” London, people are “taking their joy” (drugs) and doing as they please because it’s the end of the world. Your goal as a player is to try to blend in while not conforming to all the crazies or taking the drugs that makes them crazy in the first place. Check out more of the art for this game here, it’s pretty cool! This game has recently been getting a ton of hype, so I’m expecting it to be really interesting to watch develop through storyline and gameplay over the coming months.
Mini Metro from Dinosaur Polo Club
Build a metro station! Wait, what? Yes, build a metro station where you continue developing some sort of subway system to keep your citizens happy and moving in a growing city. Neat! The art is great too, right on par with the way the NYC subway system is designed. This is in development for PC, Mac and Linux, but I could totally see this being a mobile game at some point.
Don’t Starve Together from Klei Entertainment
The art style to this is similar to Guild of Dungeoneering crossed with something very Tim Burton, which is so much fun to look at and even interact with! This is a multiplayer survival game where you’re running around setting things on fire and making sure to remember eating with your buds. Looks like fun, I’d love to see Geek and Sundry try this out on their stream! This is available for early access on steam, but should be coming out soon.
Move or Die by those awesome guys
Party games seem to be all the rage right now, which is great because it’s encouraging people to be playing games together in the same room instead of online (which is totally fine, but maybe less exciting on most days). The idea behind this game is that if you stop moving, you die. Kinda funny! The demo video shows a multitude of different types of levels and gameplay, from avoiding obstacles to claiming as much of a level in your color as possible. I’m excited to see how this makes a splash when it comes out for PC, Mac and Linux.
Also their booth had these adorable little templates for the characters you play as in the game – customize one and tweet it! Here’s mine!
Lovely Planet by quicktequila
I liked the art style that this game had, which is how it caught my eye in the first place. I honestly had no idea what to expect when I went to the website to watch the videos for gameplay, but it’s a first person shooter. The art looks like something birthed by katamari and the music is so happy and adorable! There are little hearts all over the field, and the enemies you’re shooting are blocky or what seems to be a giant apple. Your gun lights up with bursts of stars and confetti when you shoot. This goes against every stereotype of a first person shooter I have ever seen, and if I was any good at those games, I would certainly give this one a try because of it’s seriously unique environments and jump-worthy in-game mechanics.
Curses ‘N Chaos by Tribute
This booth was pretty sweet because they actually built game cabinets for their game (as seen in this picture). Here we have a classic 8-bit art and music style game, so now the cabinets make a lot more sense. The story goes that you are Lea and Leo, a duo who has been cursed! The only way to create the elixir that will save both of you is to fight monsters – the game comes off as very Scott Pilgrim in it’s story line. The environments have a serious amount of color and detail in them for something that was built with pixels, so that’s certainly cool. Awesome little preview, looking forward to when this game comes out.
So there you have it – all the games that I was able to catch up about that I thought looked super interesting while walking the Expo floor. Was there something I missed? Let me know in the comments!!
Can’t wait to see all these games come to life. Also can’t wait to have enough money to support all these independent developers, keep doing what you’re doing guys!