Recently, Neale, friend of the site Joey Chilton, and I, were lucky enough to go to this years edition of EGX REZZED at the Tobacco Dock, London. For those not aware, EGX is the name of a long running video game convention that takes place annually, and REZZED is a spinoff dedicated purely to indie games. Whilst this may not seem like something to take note of, the key difference is that developers here appear to take on the feedback that you have about their games as you play them. It’s refreshing to play some hidden gem and say an off-hand comment, then see them write it down because they obviously want to make the best game they can. Although Microsoft, Nintendo & Sony were there, the emphasis was on independently made video games, and here are some of the best ones I happened to see at EGX REZZED 2019.
Guntastic (PC, 2019) by Ludicrous Games
I loved Towerfall Ascension, but I was never good at Towerfall Ascension. Guntastic is in a similar vein to Towerfall but has a lot more variation in its character. It is a four player couch competitive, one shot – one kill game, that sees you playing as a variety of crazy personalities (zombie, monkey, nudist, etc.) with, as the name may suggest – guns. The amount of guns is diverse enough to cater to many different play styles, from close up with the boxing gloves, to long range with a gun that shoots saws able to rip through the level terrain. Between all this chaos you still have to watch out for the traps littered throughout the stage because that means instant death too!
In the short time I had with Guntastic, the three button controls (jump, pickup & shoot) made it easy to pick up, play, and shoot some fools with reckless abandon. Each round is short enough for you not to be too annoyed if you lost, because you will quite quickly be able to seek revenge on those who have forsaken you.
Guntastic will be released sometime in 2019, on Steam for the Personal Computers.
Chromapose (Mobile, 2019) by Claire Kwong
Games can be so many different experiences, from expansive hundred hour RPGs, to the a simple clicker. Chromapose is a game simple in its concept, but so effective and fun when played with a group of people. A coloured border surrounds your screen, and your objective is to match that colour by moving your phone in any and every direction. After you have found that “sweet spot”, the other players have to match it before everyone can move onto the next colour. The fun that comes from this game is being in a big party and everyone looking stupid, moving their phones frantically in every direction.
Chromapose is available now for free at http://chromapose.me/
Close To The Sun (PC, 2019) by Storm in a Teacup
C.T.T.S has a very strong Bioshock vibe going on. The demo I played was short and featured an angry gentleman chasing me, violently killing me over and over again. The gameplay left something to be desired, but the art direction appealed to me and being alone in the world weaponless and defenseless is something that could potentially be terrifying.
Close To The Sun will be released on the Epic Games Store for the Personal Computers, sometime in 2019 .
PHOGS! (2020) by Bit Loom Games
Playing as a strange creature called a Phog (Physic Dog?), with a head on the top and a head on the bottom (think something similar to CatDog), you traverse different levels solving various puzzles. The twist? The player(s) controls each command an end of the dog – it’s easy to pick up and play, however trying to master the Phog whilst stretching, shrinking, herding the different creatures, and sometimes just getting through the level shows a lot of depth and challenge at times.
Out of all the games at EGX this one left a big impression on me, with it’s family friendly vibe, colourful art style and whimsical sound. There was nothing similar to this at all at the convention.
Phogs is due to release in 2020.
Holiday Vacation Bureau (Browser, 2019) by Rachel Clancy
What does your ideal life look like? What would you do differently next time around? What’s stopping you from living the life you want right now? These are the questions that Holiday Vacation Bureau asks.
On the outset, HVB is a simple checklist. You have over four hundred different options to choose from, yet you can only select ten. These selections will help plan for your next human incarnation on Earth, so pick carefully. Will you be a genius dropout? Choose to live off the grid? Be a cult leader? Perhaps partake in a 69? All of these things matter when picking your next life.
You can play this in a browser right now, but I believe that the best way to experience this is via Rachel Clancy’s custom made setup (see picture). Designed after an old style ATM with beautiful font work, you find yourself checking off options through a touch screen, and when you’re finished you press the big blue button and receive a custom receipt which joyfully exclaims “Enjoy your life!”.
Holiday Vacation Bureau is available now at https://clancy92.itch.io/human-vacation-bureau
The Mind by Coiledspring Games
An actual real life card game that focuses on silence and trying to read each other’s mind.
Cat Tap by Megan Wheeler
Make sure to get rid of all the food before the table fills up. A casual mobile game that is full of character and lots of catty costumes.
NYC Bungee Jump by Blackwall VR
A simple VR experience – you take an elevator up the Statue of Liberty and jump off. What makes this good is the fan simulating the air when you’re at the top and your brain thinking you are actually high in the sky.
Little Friends: Dogs & Cats by Imagineer
The Nintendogs (& cats) sequel we all truly deserve.
Vectronom by Ludopium
A funky rhythm platformer that will have you pulling out your hair, but you’ll still keep trying over and over.
Cake Bash by High Tea Frog
Similar to Mario Party, except with cakes and the mini games were fun.
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