Indie Jeff's Weekly Picks: August 15-19

By Jeff Mattas, Aug 20, 2011 12:00pm PDT

In last week's picks, I included a trailer for the indie adventure game TRAUMA (see top image) by Krystian Majewski. It's an adventure title that garnered several award nominations at various indie festivals in 2010, but has just recently been released for public consumption. It's a refreshingly adult experience that takes place inside the dreams of a woman recuperating from a car crash. Each "chapter" of the game is a surreal micro-story that informs the larger narrative and character development. All of this is presented in an intuitive interface that allows players to navigate the game's 2D photos--its primary art assets--in 3D space.

I enjoyed my experience with TRAUMA quite a lot. Despite being about navigating complex emotional landscapes, the actual playing of the game is surprisingly intuitive. It's one of those titles you could sit a non-gamer friend in front of and set them loose without much guidance. We'll also be discussing the game on the Weekend Confirmed podcast the week after PAX.

You can read my full review on Indie Games Channel, and the game itself can is available on Steam ($6.99) or the developer's website (5 euros). If you want to give it a test run, there's also a free (lower fidelity) browser-based version playable on the official site.

I've also got a couple of great indie interviews with developers Young Horses (Octodad 2) and Cold Beam Games (Beat Hazard) about their upcoming titles:

With the Indie Games Summer Uprising kicking off on XBLIG beginning this Monday, August 22, I figured it's only appropriate to share another trailer from one of the more interesting looking entries, SpeedRunner HD. Developed by Doubledutch games, SpeedRunner began its life as a Flash title, but the XBLIG rendition will include some crazy looking local competitive multiplayer for up to four players (starts around the 0:52 second mark). SpeedRunner HD will run 240 Microsoft Points ($3), and will be out on XBLIG before the Uprising ends on September 2.

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