The Page: Talking Narrative in Games

Text: The Page

The Page is a monthly meet-up event in Perth for game writers, narrative designers, creatives and anyone interested in the stories of games. Coordinated by local game designer and writer Anthony Sweet, it’s a chance to talk all things narrative, from writing techniques through to the tales in games you love.

What: The Page – May Meetup
When: Saturday, 21 May. Starting 1pm
Where: SK Games, 167 Fitzgerald Street Northbridge
Tickets: FREE!

For more information, head on over to the May Meetup event page. You can also stay up to date with their catchup plans, not to mention tune in to all things narrative, over on their main Facebook page.

Get Thwart GEO on Mobile now for Free

Thwart: Easy to play, hard to master

After trialling their latest titles at Playup Perth, not to mention testing the tenacity of their players, Kalgoorlie-based studio Outback Pixels has officially released Thwart GEO! It may look simple, but don’t let those geometric enemies and stylish backgrounds fool you. This pleasant-looking mobile game is ready to challenge and entertain, so it’s time to get those thumbs into shape.

A retro-arcade-style shooter reminiscent of an era when games were easy to play but hard to master. The super simple controls make a challenging and frustratingly addictive game that will push your steering and aiming skills to the limit! Avoid, trap and blast different types of enemies in a mesmerizing geometrical world and warp out of dangerous situations by simply shaking your device.

Thwart Geo is available now for free on both iTunes or Google Play. So put your thumbs and patience to the test, and set off into a shape-filled space.

 

Starlost seeks Android Alpha Testers

StarLost: Header

Blasting onto the scene from an uncharted wormhole, the two-man team that is Hoodwinked Studios have put a call out for alpha testers for the impressive looking top-down space shooter Starlost.

Stranded in space, use cunning and skill against a lethal robotic horde to ensure the survival of your ship! Make your way back to Earth… if you can. Use over 18 unique weapons and 4 unique skills to battle your way through 15 levels of action-packed adventure!

This good-looking game sits somewhere between the realms of mobile tower defence and bullet hell; so if you like the sounds of it, and have an Android device on hand, simply sign up for the Alpha now!

Mr Nibbles blasts off on Steam

Header: Mr Nibbles Forever

Following a successful Greenlight campaign, Epic Shrimp‘s little hamster is now a step closer to achieving his space exploration dreams! That’s right, Mr Nibbles Forever is now available on Steam with even more outfits, challenges and nibbles to munch.

Help Mr. Nibbles break out of his cage-prison and roam across the dangerous spider-infested backyard landscape before hopping in his handy rocket ship and blasting into space. Each stage contains unique graphics, backgrounds and sounds.

Mr Nibbles Forever is out now for Windows, OS X, SteamOS and Linux, in addition to iOS. And how’s this for an extra tasty nibble? The game is 15% off until May 7!

Mr Nibbles, run freeeeee!

SK & Friendz 2.0 – Featuring Local Games and Music

People Like Us - Event

Local creatives Oscar Brittain and SK Games are coming together to put on an evening of great indie games and indie bands, with SK & Friends 2.0. These are the brains behind the likes of World’s Fastest Pizza and Catnips, both of which entertained and amused at the 2015 Perth Games Festival.

What: SK & Friends 2.0
When: 7.30pm Saturday, May 7.
Where: Babushka Leederville, 742 Newcastle Street, Leederville
Tickets: $10, available at the door.

Deliver pizza with the pride and professionalism of a Paper Boy with Freo made World’s Fastest Super Pizza and partner your Pizza with the salami loving boys of Hip Priest. Jump on Bear Surfin Mega Wave and compliment your ride with the telepathically sculpted sounds of Sealamb. Smash out some rounds of Downwell as your ears fall into the arms of Yaqui Yeti. Finally be mesmerized by the visuals of Panoramical and the sounds of People Like Us.

To stay up to date with the details, and to find out more about the indie games and bands set to feature, head on over the Facebook event page.

New Trailer for VR Game Valiant

Text: Valiant, by Offpeak Games

Locally-made VR multiplayer game Valiant by Offpeak Games is set for release soon, and we are pleased to be able to share the game’s early access trailer with you!

Valiant is a fast paced, mounted medieval combat game for the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. It was certainly a crowd pleaser at the Perth Games Festival in 2014 & 2015, and the developers have been working hard to deliver the best multiplayer medieval mayhem experience possible.

Stay in your saddles and keep your lances at the ready – we shall let you know as soon as it hits early access release on Steam this April.

The WA Devs of the 2016 MCV Pacific Women in Games List

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The MCV Women In Games list has returned for its second year, recognising the hard-working lady devs of Australia and New Zealand. The feature acts to showcase the high caliber of women working in our industry, recognise their contributions, and help to inspire the next generation. This year a number of Western Australian developers have been included.

These women are now eligible for the 2016 MCV Pacific Women In Games Awards presented by Xbox, which will be awarded at the second annual MCV Pacific Women In Games Lunch presented by Xbox. The women within the list vote amongst the list to decide the four categories.

 

So congratulations to the following devs…

(and thank you for all your work making and supporting games!)

Minh Tran
Director at Hungry Sky/ Co-Founder of Let’s Make Games

One of the founders of Let’s Make Games, Minh has been quietly working behind the scenes in WA games for many years. She is currently a Director at Hungry Sky, and has been behind many games and interactive experiences, including the award-winning Dinosaur Discovery Augmented Reality Experience.

Kate Raynes-Goldie
Director of Games & Interactive at FTI/ Founder of Games We Play

The leading figure in the Games & Interactive space at FTI, Kate is behind such local initiatives as PlayUp Perth, Level One and the Oompf! Games Fund. As if that wasn’t enough, she also writing advocacy pieces, presents talks and workshops, and of course has developed a number of award-winning pervasive games. Bonus Round: Kate featured in last year’s inaugural Women In Games List.

Jess Watson
Operation Team at Let’s Make Games/ Coordinator of the Perth Games Festival/ Game Dev at Hungry Sky

Managing Let’s Make Games’ online presence, as well being a key figure in coordinating the Perth Games Festival, Jess keeps tabs on the local community and helps get the word out about game development in WA. She worked on the level design of Star Hammer: The Vanguard Prophecy, and now working with local studio Hungry Sky. Bonus Round: Jess featured in this year’s MCV Pacific 30 Under 30 List.

Michelle Sanford
Microsoft Services at Microsoft / Co-Founder of Tiidal /  WA Women’s Chair of the Australian Computer Society / Tech Girl Superhero

Sharing knowledge and supporting others is the key to Michelle’s success. In addition to her work at Microsoft, Michelle spends her time coordinating and conducting talks, sharing news in the ICT sphere, and becoming a superhero to encourage the next generation of women in STEM.

Karen Wellington
Coordinator of CoderdojoWA / WA Digital Project Awards

The driving force behind CoderDojo WA, Karen is paving the way for the next generation by supporting kids aged 7 – 17yrs to learn how to code. She also ran the WA Digital Project Awards, which celebrated and showcased the kids’ work. Bonus Round: Karen was also in last year’s inaugural Women In Games List.

 

A Let’s Make Games Special Mention…

In addition to the super cool ladies listed above, we would like to note that there are a whole lot of great people in the WA games industry. We would like to extend a special thanks to a couple of the women who, though not on the MCV list, work hard with us to support the local community.

So a big thank you from us to:

  • Sofie Mather of SK Games & Level One
    Often seen building magnificent machines for SK Games, not to mention running around organising events for SK, Level One, and PlayUp Perth (to name a few). She also is the brains behind Level One’s Dev of the Day feature, and an all ’round awesome person!
  • Vivien Lengkeek of CoderDojo WA & Let’s Make Games
    Supporting aspiring developers of all ages, Vivien works with CoderDojo WA to teach kids about programming and making games. She coordinated the 2015 Perth Games Festival talk schedule, recently joined the writing team at Let’s Make Games, and still somehow finds time to create interactive stories.

Know an inspiring woman in games?

There are so many women in the games industry working hard and inspiring others with their games, work and support. If there are West Australian women in games you think deserve some recognition, please say so in the comments!

We would love to hear about the work others are doing, and a mention here could help some hard-working individuals feel appreciated, not to inspire nominations to awards in the future!

Tank ON 2 rolls out on Android

Tank On 2: Jeep Hunter, by Ino-Co

Get ready to close ranks and stand your ground wth Ino-Cos new mobile game, Tank ON 2 – Jeep Hunter. Does Ino-Co Plus sound familiar? They should! The developers joined us at the Perth Games Festival last year where they exhibited their RPG puzzle game Gunspell.

The sequel to the popular Tank ON – Modern Defender game sees you protecting your base from waves of enemies with a bevy of weapons, including rocket launchers and orbital ion cannons. Upgrade your base and weapons by destroying enemies and completing missions, and also earn rewards for your achievements.

If you like the sound of some explosive, tank-busting action, then be sure to check it out over on Google Play!

Whacky Ball set to be a hit on iOS

WhackyBallBanner

Pushing the limits of what mobile games can do, Whacky Ball is a fun free title that literally puts you in the game. Released last weekend by local developer Alistair Mann, it has already been featured in the ‘Best New Games’ category on the Australian App Store!

In Whacky Ball, your device’s camera transports you into a world of challenging ball games. Using motion recognition, you whack the balls virtually on the screen using your hands or head as if you are really there.

To jump into the world of Whacky Ball on iPhone or iPad, head on over to the iTunes.

Playup Perth: Interstate Arcade Edition

The Interstate Exchange

This month the Playup Perth love has been spread across the country and over the seas in what will be the very first Interstate Arcade Edition! Thanks to FTI, SK Games and The Interstate Game Exchange (an initiative which helps developers showcase their games at meetups across the country) you have the opportunity to try your hand at games made by local, interstate and international devs.

What: Playup Perth Interstate Arcade Edition
When: Friday, 29th April, 7pm til late
Where: SK Games, 167 Fitzgerald Street Northbridge
Tickets: $10 (regular) / $7 (FTI members) via Eventbrite
Extra info: This is an 18+ event

Featured Games

For all the details on the games, head on over to the main event page here. Don’t forget to visit the Playup Perth website to stay up to date with all Playup-related news. See you there!

A World of Choices Screenshot Thwart Screenshot