The premier indie gaming convention has officially kicked off here in Seattle, and I am stoked to be back among some great company. Passionate game devs from all over the world are here showing off their latest demos and providing a ”peek behind the curtain” on dozens of forthcoming titles.
I’ve already hit a few titles this morning and wanted to share some quick thoughts!
One Piece: Odyssey [Bandai Namco]
From Bandai Namco, Odyssey places the famous Straw Hat crew in an RPG adventure, with an aesthetic style that is very reminiscent of Dragon Quest XI in execution. Maybe not quite the same level of polish, but still very approachable and fitting for the franchise.
My brief excursion with the game was fun – with a good mix of world exploration and utilizing unique character skills (namely Luffy’s rocket-arm technique to cross gaps etc). Combat also was engaging, with elements of different ”battlefields” that the party could potentially be split into. Overall, I think One Piece and RPG fans have plenty of reason to stay close to this project.
The Last Oricru [GoldKnights]
Admittedly while I had heard of this title in passing, it wasn’t until someone actively invited me to check it out on Twitter that I decided to seek out The Last Oricru demo. Described as a ”souls-lite” rather than ”souls-like”, this 3rd person action title places you, an otherworldly time-traveling warrior, in the middle of a revolutionary conflict. As you play through the game, you can elect to take certain decisions to support one faction or the other, opening alternative gameplay paths and expanding replayability.
Perhaps the most compelling element of this game is it’s focus on co-op gameplay. Initially designed as a couch co-op experience, there are numerous mechanics that elevate the cooperative gameplay, including combo techniques, utilizing an ally’s amplification shield to bounce spells off and hit enemies around corners, and of course being able to revive an ally to full health versus a lower health respawn.
Overall, I really enjoyed my time with The Last Oricru, and would encourage you to wishlist the game on Steam!
Beneath Oresa [Broken Spear Inc.]
This has definitely been the most pleasant surprise of the con for me so far. I make it a point to check out all of the PAX Rising titles, and this was one of them. A deckbuilding strategy game with 3D combat elements, Beneath Oresa features incredibly smooth gameplay and engaging aesthetics. After a few rounds I knew I needed to walk away or I was going to lose out on the rest of the Media Hour hooked on this amazing game.
I’m very very excited for this game to arrive. I’ve enjoyed quite a few tabletop-based deckbuilders in the past, but not so much in the video game space. This game, however, is setting up to be a glaring exception. I need more! Until it arrives, it’s definitely going on my Wishlist.
Akurra [Jason Newman Games]
Who doesn’t love some good old fashioned block-pushing, puzzle-solving action?
With an 8-bit classic aesthetic, snappy soundtrack and addictive (if occasionally maddening) gameplay flow/difficulty, Akurra is definitely going to scratch an itch for many. If you’re a puzzle-fiend, you need to Wishlist this, stat!
It’s a Wrap [Chanko Studios]
Part puzzle game, part platformer…part video editing software? It was an odd pitch, but after playing through a couple levels I could definitely see how It’s a Wrap! earned a spot in the PAX Rising showcase.
In the game you control an 80s style movie star during the ”platformer” phase, and the director/editor in the ”planning” phase. With control over various time blocks and elements in the scene, you can set your star up for success while still capturing the thrills needed for a popcorn-popping blockbuster!
You can check out the game and wishlist it here.
March March! [Lepka Games]
A unique strategy/defense title, March March! also stands out due to the nature of its developing studio. Lepka Games is Ukrainian-based. Given the persisting conflict in Ukraine, the game was being represented by Real People marketing.
Part tetris, part battlefield strategy title… March March pits your army against hordes of undead. With a sneak peek at the upcoming “regiment formations” (similar to tetris block previews) and various unit types, you work to push through enemy lines and impact enemy morale.
Real People rep Drew shared how he ”accidentally” played the game for 6 hours when he first got his hands on it, and I can definitely speak to its addictive characteristics.
If this sort of game seems up your alley, make sure to Wishlist it!
Those were the games I tried out so far – got a handful more on my agenda this afternoon, so keep your eyes on the site for updates later today!