BalanCity is a goofy mixture between the oldschool Sim City and Jenga. In this physical city builder you need to make a towering metropolis over a treacherous seesaw. You can build houses, offices, parks, transportation, landmarks and more. Eventually, disasters will hit your city, so you must have your emergency services ready to act. Citizen approval is also a thing you must take care of if you do not want your people to start rioting and burn the city down. There is a Free Build Mode as well as Challenges and Scenarios where you must build real life metropolis with their famous landmarks.
The Ukrainian team of Pinokl Games team was working on a huge ambitious project of Mecha Titans and some other casual and family-friendly games… and then got tired of that all. They unleashed their darkest thoughts and participated in Kanobu Game Jam with Party Hard, a game of a bloody massacre at a noisy neighbors’ party at 3AM, or “third-person urban conflict simulator” as they describe their creation.
The bloodthirsty theme found a response in the hearts of Casual Connect Europe 2015 critics, having brought the team the Critics Choice award in Indie Prize. The team recently celebrated the 1st anniversary of Party Hard launch, having scored numerous other awards and gaining a massive creative fan base. Pinokl Games’ marketing manager and producer Alina Husevyk shares the most noticeable learnings of the year.
34BigThings is one of the biggest indie game studios in Italy. Founded in 2013 and self-sustained throughout, they launched their first game Hyperdrive Massacre in 2015, while working on their much more ambitious futuristic racer Redout. The team’s lead game designer Giuseppe Enrico Franchi shares the story.
Grey Alien Games has been making premium downloadable PC and Mac games since 2005. This British game studio has brought casual game hits including Regency Solitaire, Spooky Bonus, Fairway Solitaire (2007 PC/Mac version) and Unwell Mel to life.
The theme for Regency Solitaire came to writer and researcher Helen Carmichael while she was watching Downton Abbey in 2013. She had recently moved back to Bridport, Dorset from Canada with husband Jake Birkett, and the couple were keen to revisit their favourite historical locations in the UK.
Let’s start by putting things in the right perspective. Both opera and games were created for entertainment. Usually, though, they didn’t mix or even come close to each other. Until they did, in Amon Miyamoto’s mind, when the renowned Japanese stage director envisioned Mozart’s masterpiece – The Magic Flute as a videogame. The studio of LabLike went even further, turning The Magic Flute into an actual videogame – their game designer and team lead Olaf Morelewski tells how.
Skara, The Blade Remains is a versus-style multiplayer hack’n’slash with the soul of an RPG. Developed by a small team of 12 crazy indie developers in the UK and Spain using Unreal Engine, Skara is set on a post-cataclysmic fantasy world where only the strong can survive. Teams and individuals of up to 16 will battle it out for supremacy in Skara’s full game mode, becoming the protagonists of an unfolding story.
Until then, players can play quick versus fights, longer free-for-all brawls and six-person Team Deathmatches in dangerous environments.
4 I Lab is a small indie game development studio based in Minsk, Belarus. It was founded in 2011 by two friends, Mikita Susha and Mick Yurchanka. Soon the team grew up to 7 people and began releasing mobile games like The Gravity and V For Voodoo, trying to find themselves. They always had an ambition and desire to make something big, and two years ago finally got a vision of the game that they want to create.
Before founding Smarter Games, Kennedy Rose was a web developer. The transition to creating videogames was almost entirely by accident. He started creating web applications and teaching assistant tools. He was even making word search games for teachers, with menus, objectives and special effects. At some point Kennedy realized he had all the abilities necessary to create games. So why not? After realizing that it was actually pretty fulfilling, he started Smarter Games. Fox & Flock is the first Smarter Games game as well as Kennedy’s first storyline-driven game, and it’s this story that he tells.
Two veteran RTS players create a company to capture the excitement of hardcore RTS and bring it to a wider audience. A few weeks after their successful Steam release they look back at their original goals and discuss if it is possible to make a small-scope game in a genre that is dominated by elaborate and highly developed flagship titles. The studio’s executive producer Casper Bodewitz shares the experience.
AuraLab is a Russian game studio, founded in 2014 by Alexander Kuvshinov, Andrey Sharapov and Roman Povolotsky. The studio was started specifically for the production of the game of Karma. Incarnation 1 , which is now in development and will be released in 2016 on PC, Mac, Android and iOS. Andrey recalls the origins of the game.