Last weekend, the IndieCade festival took over downtown Culver City. You can think of it as an art walk where you get to play independent video games.
Gallery halls commandeered by gaming laptops and installations. A firehouse packed to the walls with folks playing really fun, weird stuff. It’s glorious. Brief notes on some of the things I saw:
AntiChamber - one of the most original first-person games I’ve seen. I imagine this is what would happen if Salvador Dali and Andy Kaufman worked on a game together.
Desktop Dungeons - I love roguelikes, so of course I love this. Somehow they’ve taken one of the most obtuse game genres, removed the obtuseness, leaving you just the the gooey fun center.
Johann Sebastian Joust - I consider the Copenhagen Game Collective folks to be the most punk rock of indie games. A motion-control game that doesn’t use a monitor or television? Slow motion ballet-battle? I love it. My best of show.
Skulls of the Shogun - Turn-based tactical squad game with hard counters and long-term and short-term strategies. This scratches a lot of itches for me (seven of them).
This is just a few of the showings. For the full list of all the IndieCade 2011 games, check ‘em out here.
One of the most wonderful things about IndieCade is that it’s smack dab in the middle of downtown Culver City, so a lot of visitors were people who just happened to be passing by. There’s something wonderful about such a diverse cross section of the population getting exposed to these games - natch, not just games, but these beautifully daring pieces of work.
If you’re in the LA area, make it a point to visit next year.