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Indie-cent Exposure #3

Posted July 18th 2011 by Brandon Schmidt.

Indie-cent Exposure

In this installment of Indie-cent Exposure, I take a look at a couple of games I feel really capture the essence of their respective genres: puzzle and platformer. The former is an iOS game that may teach you a thing or two about history, but will definitely force you to learn patience and strategy. The latter is an XBL Indie game that may make you rethink what's aesthetically possible in that marketplace.

Rise of Atlantis HD

By now everyone on the planet has played Bejeweled and is familiar with the puzzle mechanics of swapping blocks to form lines of three or more of the same shape or color. It certainly wasn't the first game to use that model and it's certainly not going to be the last. In Rise of Atlantis HD by Playrix Entertainment, you have the added requirement of removing those lines of shapes in order to get a number of special tiles to fall off the bottom of the grid. Sounds simple right? Well the game ups the ante by throwing a timer, misshapen boards, and barriers (both removable and not) at you to try to trip you up. In your corner are items which can be acquired by also causing them to fall off the grid, along with a rechargeable sun meter that can be used to randomly destroy tiles.

The game itself is centered around conquering a handful of the well-known cultures of the ancient world including the Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, etc. Along the way you might even learn a thing or two as a tidbit of info about the cultures is provided between each stage.

It's an iOS game, and while the paid version is five bucks, I found it to be well worth it. The free version will take you a little less than halfway through the game. You'll miss some of the more challenging stages, but you'll get a pretty good feel for the game anyway.

Rise of Atlantis HD

TIC: Part 1

One of the most glaring problems in the Xbox Live Indie Marketplace games is the visual style. I've dabbled a little in game development myself and I believe more often than not programmers don't make good artists. However, every once in awhile you can find a gem and that's exactly what you'll find in TIC: Part 1 from RedCandy Games. The backgrounds are really a feast for the eyes and I'm incredibly surprised it wasn't a full Xbox Live Arcade game.

You play as the titular TIC, a curious robot out to rid a once-peaceful world from the nefarious EvilCorp, a group of resource-hungry robots from another planet. The game is platforming at its finest as TIC tries to make his way from objective to objective, displayed in the upper left of the screen. TIC immediately has a hover capability at his disposal, but it's limited by an energy meter that forces him to either land after short flights or refuel by collecting red acorns. Oftentimes landing isn't an option and you must time your flights and directions just right to make it to the next recharge or landing spot. There are of course a number of enemies attempting to get in your way and make life difficult. However the game is fun and never frustrating which is about the highest praise you can give a game, particularly a platformer.

TIC: Part 1

And there you have it for this installment. I challenge all of you to give these titles a try, particularly TIC. As much garbage as there is in the XBL Indie Marketplace, there are also some quality titles that deserve some much-needed attention. As always, keep tuning into Nerd Mentality for the next Indie-cent Exposure and all your indie game coverage. Happy Gaming!

Tags: iPad, Xbox Live Indie Marketplace, Indie-cent Exposure, Rise of Atlantis, TIC: Part 1

Posted in: Gaming, Features, Entertainment

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