Tales of the Rampant Coyote

Adventures in Indie Gaming!

IGF 2012: Bursting at the Seams

Posted by Rampant Coyote on October 25, 2011

The Independent Games Festival is reporting a record number of entries into the 2012 competition – by a huge margin over last year’s record number of entrants. There are 568 entries altogether, which is just mind-boggling no matter how you slice it. And I know one of them, the IGF Pirate Kart, is a massive combo submission of something like 300 smaller games by over 100 developers.

In case you are wondering which game will be the 2012 winner…

IGF 2012 Seumas McNally Grand Prize Winner

It’s not like the competition is going to be intense or anything.

Actually, I very nearly skipped entering the competition.  But it felt too weird not to compete.  Yeah, I probably just chucked a hundred bucks away on a lottery ticket, but I’m very proud of Frayed Knights: The Skull of S’makh-Daon, and feel it should get its chance to compete in spite of  being perhaps too “traditional” for the festival.

But Five hundred sixty-eight entries! I’m still wrapping my brain around this.  Looking at the screenshots, it’s clear that the quality is quite varied, but there are some dang good titles there. (I note that Frozen Synapse follows my game alphabetically. Good game if you are into turn-based tactics!). Alone in the Woods looks fantastic. BitShifter is something of a surprise… I played an alpha version of it something like six years ago.  So I guess there are games that have had longer dev cycles than my own.

In an article at GamaSutra, festival chairman Brandon Boyer states, “The diversity — and the plain overwhelming number — of entries in the festival this year is proof positive that we’re in the midst of a true renaissance in games history.”

I agree.  Every year, I hear people stating that two or three years previously was “the best time to be an indie game developer.” It is something apparent in hindsight.  While the field is becoming incredibly crowded right now, it’s an indication of the power of the tools and amazing opportunities that are out there now to make your own games.

Filed Under: Indie Evangelism, News - Comments: 4 Comments to Read

  • Bad Sector said,

    Nah, i would say that the best period to be an indie game developer was in late 90s when budgets were low and expectations were even lower :-P. At this period i was contacted by a budget publisher for a small desktop space invaders clone i wrote while i was at school – a few years later i couldn’t convince a single soul to buy my Nikwi game 😛

    Still, it is much better than a few years ago where anything non-casual was outright ignored by everyone except the most hardcore indie gamers 🙂

    Today is the best time to be an indie gamer, though :-). Now if only more people provided Mac versions of their games…

  • Rampant Coyote said,

    Heh – the twist I’m seeing now is a lack of PC versions of games. Available for iOS, available for XBLIG, but the PC version is an afterthought.

    I’ve been exploring Unity since releasing Frayed Knights: TSoSD, though. The whole multiple-build-target thing (instead of just theoretical compile-time compatibility) is awfully tempting.

  • Anthony Roenbaum said,

    @Rampant Coyote

    Bitshifter has a MAC build, check out the site bitshiftergame.com

  • Rubes said,

    I’ve been looking at Unity for a long time now…but the thought of porting things over is just too daunting.