Did up BitSummit 2016 with my boy Doug last weekend. Had a good time talking to Indie Game folks and playing their games. He’ll post more picture as he is good at that. My picture are all blurry and make BitSummit look like more of a drugged up rave than it was.
Here are some brief thoughts on the trends I notices and some quick and dirty reviews of games I got hands-on with:
-Quite a few two-stick arena shooters. And 4-player arena combat games.
-The Metroidvania trend seems to be waning though their were some good ones.
-A few re-skins rather than re-makes of old 1980s games. I’m a bit wary of this level of nostalgia. Looking back is good. Reproducing the past? Maybe not so much.
-Switch was the new hotness. We’ll see if Nintendo actually works to make it a good indie platform. History says: “probably not.”
-I dug the experimental stuff, though there wasn’t a ton of it at BitSummit. I saw a 1D game, a alien abduction game with the Oculus Rift, and a Chip-Tunes theremin. I need to get to a games-as-art convention at some point because this is the future right here.
-Lack of wizard based games.
-No real star of the show this year. No single game that everyone was buzzing about, but a high level of polish across the board.
Individual Game Thoughts (Note that these are games I actually played, and most were in preliminary stages so take anything good or bad I say with a grain of salt.)
–Agartha – Particle physics based plat-former. Very early in development, but potentially the best game at BitSummit. You can play as a wizard.
–Arena Gods – Four player one-hit kill top down mayhem. Like Nidhogg or Bushido Blade, this is a top notch party game.
–Blaster Master Zero – Re-make bordering on re-skin of original Blaster Master. On my list for a play-through if it gets to Steam or I get a Switch. See my comment above regarding re-skins.
–Brave Earth – Castlevania (not Metroidvania) clone. Birds with push you into pits.
–GÖRSD – Four player arena Pac-Man? It’s for the Switch!
–Iconoclasts – Best of the BitSummit Metroidvanias. Very polished with a very tactile mechanic-with-a-wrench mechanic. I’m eager to play more when it’s released.
–Killer Queen – Weird hybrid of Joust and strategy. I was mostly in it for the Joust.
–Kill the Dragon – Nuclear Throne with a fantasy skin. You can be a wizard in it.
–Luna & Jhona – Mobile game where you dig for things.
–Megacopter: Blades of the Goddess – An evil copter that is the physical incarnation of a wrathful Aztec god? Yes. Sweet pixel art? Yes. Blood and explosions? Yes. So much yes.
–MetaMorph – Diablo with RTS mechanics. Really polished. I need to spend more time with it to get a better opinion. Keep an eye on this. You can be a rabbit samurai in it.
–Mr. Shifty – Great Hotline Miami style game with teleportation mechanics. It’s ‘Nightcrawler: the Game’ which I’m totally down to spend more time with.
–Nemo & DO – Cool little top top-down tank game. Works as a one-stick two-tank puzzle in single player and a straight combat game multi-player.
–Pon Pon Pirates – Bubble Bobble clone by the makers of Pirate Pop Plus. I love Bubble Bobble and Pirate Pop Plus so I’m really looking forward to this one.
–Wonderboy – Stunning re-skin of Wonderboy III. Fun, but see my comment above regarding re-skins.