The Cashie Brothers‘ Iota is a fantastic-looking indie game, one of the more visually-imaginative XBLIGs around. That it used Ikaruga‘s color-switching mechanic to spice up its platforming was a bonus that gave it some depth. So it was a bit of a letdown when the review found its reliance on nearly flawless runs in later levels to be a deal-breaker.
Not one to brush off criticism, the Developers have since released an update to the game. In addition to tightening up the controls and their input response time, your multi-hued robot now starts each stage with one extra tick on his life bar, with the possibility to scoop up a second ‘life’ in the course of the level. In practice, this cuts out almost all the frustration I experienced in the original playthrough, and the controls did feel more responsive during the trickier sequences.
As such, Iota now plays much less like a punishformer, leaving you no excuse to avoid its otherwise delightful charm.
Okay, so fine, maybe it’s not the sound someone makes when they sneeze, but it got your attention, didn’t it? Shutshimi is instead a retro-themed side-scrolling shooter coming from Neon Deity Games early in the new year. It stars a fish, with beefy human arms, carrying a shotgun. Bet you didn’t see that coming.
In keeping with the ‘fish’ theme and myths that just won’t die, everything in the game lasts ten seconds, which is the length of our aquatic friend’s damaged memory. That goes for the waves of enemies you’ll face, and the amount of time you’ll have to shop for powerups (both good and bad) between rounds. With randomized items and levels, the quickened pace, and plenty of headgear to don (who doesn’t enjoy a good hat?), Shutshimi should be… different, to say the very least.
Shutshimi will cost you $1 when it releases in January. You can follow the developers on Twitter here, or swim over to the main site (a PC demo is available).
Looking like a sort of melee-focused version of Super Crate Box, albeit with less squares, the forthcoming King Slash is promising plenty of stages and boss encounters to compliment its retro visuals and tunes. It’s also nothing new.
This game seems equally geared towards quick play sessions, so it’s no surprise that developer EyeBoxGames is also releasing it on mobile platforms. So long as the action stays fun and promotes a long-term investment (plenty of unlockables are up for grabs), it could be a nice diversion to start off the new year.
King Slash is expected to hit XBLIG in early 2014. You can follow the developers on Twitter here, or keep an eye (pun intended) on the official site here.
Some really fantastic-looking visuals aside, you can file the Cashie Brothers‘ Iota under yet another XBLIG I was unaware of until just a few days ago. Sporting a charming art style and soundtrack, it promises to be more than a simple platformer.
The game uses the color-swapping tricks of Treasure’s beloved Ikaruga not just for combat purposes, but to up the challenge in each stage’s traversal. With the amount of variety and opportunity those ideas present, Iota should be an interesting trip.
Iota is currently in peer review, and should see release by early December. It will cost you $1. Official Site here.
Dude, wait for the drop.
It seems that Super Amazing Wagon Adventure (review) just got a little more super, or amazing, or perhaps both super and amazing. Or just added a ‘Turbo’ to the end of the title. Whatever. It means DLC.
In celebration of the game’s recent acceptance and release on Steam (a hearty Congrats! are due to developer Sparsevector), the Xbox Live Indie version of the game has received a little extra love, namely the ‘Turbo’ update that the PC and Steam versions were blessed with. Packing new character customization options, wagons, and some added gameplay scenes (plague monkeys… don’t get any on you), it should pepper in a little more ‘far-fetched’ into your westward journey.