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BYOND and Within #16

Patches and releases from a niche game development community... as told by a fool gathering unrelated Steam sale achievements, trading lifetime passports of his work for wishlisted games and pretending he can manage his pile of shame. I hate me.

As if I wasn't wasting enough time digging into my pile of shame, the Steam Summer Camp Sale has had me earning achievements just to get expansions.  I even got HOARD's Fireth of July.  (Were you overcompensating for your easy grind achievements, Big Sandwich Games?  Bad timing!)

On the bright side, the sale is one more chance to give BYOND players access to my present and future BYOND games just by giving me a gift from my wishlist.  It's also a chance to be told that my body of work isn't worth $2.49.  Feel free to let me pretend I'm important. ;)

Note that Inventive Dingo's Mayhem Intergalactic is available for 75% off.  On BYOND, the developer was known as Crispy.  His prequel, Yet Another Generic Space-Age Conquest Game, was a favorite.  Its spiritual successor was a 2008 Independent Games Festival Games: Student Showcase winner.  Go get it on Steam or give Crispy his full share on his own site.

This edited version of BYOND and Within comes to you from an unpaid volunteer using a game/development portal and software engine called BYOND.  Rather than play suggestions, the column focuses on recent developer activity.

Within BYOND

Silk Games are holding a 4th of July event for their retro MORPG NEStalgia. Battle system and hotkey updates are on the way.  Listen to the 7th episode of the official podcast, read their experience with BYOND's upcoming Flash client and learn the secrets of the fan site.

Forum_account's digging platformer, A Miner Adventure, has been updated with bug fixes and performance improvements. A new adventure mode is still on the way. For now, check out the class details from his upcoming platformer RPG, Tiny Heroes, and his progressing development tools (including performance tweaks for Pixel Movement).

There's no server or download as I type this, but Makeii has allegedly released a simple two-player game called Arrow SoccerScreenshots have also been released of a pipe-laying puzzle game.  A library called ZNDev intended for the creation of single-player 16-bit games is in progress.

F0lak and Kaiochao have been improving their player-run MORPG Hazordhu II.  Permanent death is a possibility, but characters age more slowly with seasons each lasting a real day.  Roleplay depth has been added to combat, subscribers can form groups and characters can now brew alcoholic beverages.

Robertbanks2 has made two updates to his tactical RPG Imperatorum.  Pathfinding and AI have been improved.  The event and dialogue system is functioning.  The bear-wrestling chicken is watching us...  No longer watching over?  Well this got creepy.

Acebloke has released a new version of his economic/military sim Wargames.  Tanks have been divided into three types.  Names can be searched for.  Three new buildings, two new missiles and one new unit have been added.

Gooseheaded has been improving the graphics and interface of his cooperative roguelike Deep Dungeon.  From the screenshot, it appears lighting is taking a greater role.  Having fun with flavor text, Gooseheaded warns that a large, unstoppable update on the way.

Finished with his procedural generation efforts, Jittai offered details of the combination system for his MORPG Stranded.  More recently, methods were added to lock creations away from those who would destroy them.  The guide and audio have been improved.  Corpses can soon be stripped for resources.  The game should be available for download again shortly.

With a growing team, I-Aryn-I has resumed work on the steampunk MORPG Lost Worlds.  Graphics are being refined with inventory changes and character styles to fit the theme.  A screenshot of the new interface has been posted.

Seemingly inspired by the previous version of the PopLava challenge, Tsfreaks has been playing around with a hexagon strategy game.  Two to four player games might be available soon, but Tsfreaks is most excited about extending the features once the core engine is complete.

Remember that PopLava Challenge #1.5 ends on August 28th.

Beyond BYOND

  • Game Play 2011 runs from July 7th to July 31st at The Brick Theater in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.  The festival merges technology, theater, performance art and video game culture.
  • Gamebit Game Lab has been providing a rare amount of transparency with their research.  Check out their YouTube channel for lectures on a variety of topics.
  • The cult favorite Retro Game Master can now be found streaming on Kotaku.  You may also know it GameCenter CX.  I now know it as that curious decision to start with a 4th season episode of a 15-season show when there are already fansubs.
  • Get well wishes go to Extra Credits artist Allison Theus who recently discovered that she requires major shoulder surgery if she is to continue her work.  The donation drive to pay for her healthcare has been such a huge success that the remaining funds could become a charity or indie game fund.
  • 7-2.  Prepare for the next battle with a free ECA membership sponsored by Red Bull.

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