With close to a 100 games competing for the coveted Indie Prize Awards at this year’s Casual Connect Asia 2016, it’s hard to pick and choose which games to mention. I didn’t get to play all the games for as long as I would have liked, but these are some visual standouts.
Fossil Echo by Awaceb (France)
An absolutely stunning 2D platformer with the gorgeous storytelling lines of Ico or Shadow & the Colossus. Fossil Echo tells us the story of a young boy climbing a tower in the middle of the sea. Throughout his journey, you unlock flashes of memory that give you the backstory and the reason for his ascent. The gameplay is focused on timing and reflexes, with little to no combat. Fossil Echo is set to be launched on July 1st on PC.
Breath of Winter by Armatur Games (Russia)
Winter is coming and that means a brutal fight for survival to stay alive through the long cold winter. As village chieftain, you need to make your decisions during the plentiful seasons of Spring and Summer. To gather the year’s bountiful harvest of food, fuel, and supplies to get you through the winter. The year is littered with difficult decisions that you have to make to ensure the survival of your village. But be warned not everyone is going to make it through the long night. Breath of Winter has been Greenlit on Steam and will be out in Fall this year.
Yukidama by Yukidama Studio (Taiwan)
The word Yukidama means snowball in Japanese, which is an apt description for this adorable white rabbit ball. The game is simple enough, you help manoeuvre your Yukidama through swipes of wind. Fly through the beautiful scenes of nature all the while keeping your snowball safe from enemies. The landscape and music of this whole game is just gorgeous and almost zen-like. The game will be released on iOS and Android but has no official release date as of now.
Opus: The Day We Found Earth by Team Signal (Taiwan)
Another beautiful game from Taiwan, Opus is fairly meditative in play. You play as a solitary robot survivor looking for Earth through the lens of your deep space telescope. Along the way you find people and objects that reveal a heartfelt and intricate backstory. A game for explorers, discover the secrets that lie deep in space and try to make your way back home. I definitely recommend using your headphones for this experience, Opus is out on Android, iOS and Steam.
UAYEB by ICA Games (France)
UAYEB looks like a classic survival adventure game. Set in a post-apocalyptic future where mankind has long been wiped out and nature has reclaimed the land. Based around the ancient Mayan civilization you have to survive, explore, craft and fight to defend yourself. An intensely beautiful game it is currently only in concept/development mode. So we’ll be looking forward to seeing how UAYEB will look in the future.
Bulb Boy by Bulbware (Poland)
Beauty in a terrifying way, Bulb Boy is a boy with a bulb for a head that suddenly discovers that his house is plagued by horrible monsters. In this horrifying point and click adventure, your head is the only source of light. Bordering on the edges of twisted humour Bulb Boy is a great if not horrifying game. Be warned those images stay in your mind long after you try to go to sleep at night. Trust us. Bulb Boy was released on Halloween last year and is available to play on Steam for PC and Mac. With a mobile iOS and Android version coming soon.
Clockwork by Gamesoft (Australia)
Clockwork takes place in a mechanical city of Watchtower where a great plague has run through the world. The remaining survivors are divided between the less fortunate in the industrial slums below. While the rest take refuge in the gleaming towers above the city. You play as the boy Atto who has the power to bend time thanks to his companion Milli. Clockwork makes for some complex puzzle platforming. The steampunk game will be released on Xbox, PSN, Steam, iOS and Android.
Phantom Blade by Mediasoft Entertainment (Malaysia)
A fantastical dungeon crawler, the genre has been done quite a number of times but looks like a solid turn-based strategy reminiscent of titles such as Final Fantasy Tactics and Chocobo Dungeon. Turn-based strategy has been one of my favourite genres and it’s great to see a solid title coming on mobile. The story and artwork are great if a big lighthearted but then again for a mobile game it’s hardly surprising. Phantom Blade will be released in July on iOS and Android.
Daydream: The Beginning by Joyseed (Indonesia)
Joyseed have created a beautiful fantastical world and even though Daydream is still in alpha production, their artwork is absolutely flawless. Following the whimsical, fairytale theme, the characters, as well as the different outfits are beautiful. The gameplay is set to change but I have to say I really enjoyed this simplified but definitely challenging style of play. I’m not sure when this mobile game will launch but I can’t wait to play it.
Stifled by Gattai Games (Singapore)
Picture this. Complete darkness. The world is filled with creatures and monsters but you can’t see them. You know that they’re there. You know you have to keep moving but how can you move when you can’t see? Breathe… just a little and watch the world draw out around you. The sounds you make will help you reveal the world around you, but not too loud because the creatures in the darkness can hear you too… Stifled is an intensely immersive horrifying experience which will be released in October for PC and PS4. Thanks for the nightmares guys.