originals\ Nov 24, 2013 at 10:00 pm

Dr. David's Indie Roundup: Contrast, Girl and the Robot, Resogun, and more


The launch of brand new consoles over the past eight days hasn't deterred the indie spectrum from being a major part of gaming. In fact, one of the best, highest-reviewed next-gen offerings thus far was developed by an independent studio. That's definitely saying something. Aside from that lovely gem (which we'll discuss in greater detail in a bit), there are other stories in the indie gaming scene worth getting excited over. So we're going to jump right in and take a look at the latest releases and news.

Let's talk indie games!

Contrast emerges from the shadows


It's a tall order to follow indie puzzle-platformers the likes of Limbo, but that's exactly what Contrast attempts to do. While it may not be the stellar product that Playdead's black-and-white hit was a few years ago, the Compulsion Games-developed title isn't without merit. Ultimately, Contrast is the kind of game that fans of this type of experience are likely to find a lot of enjoyment in.

Probably the most standout feature in this recent release is its art style. The game boasts an impressive vaudevillian look that helps set it apart from plenty of other games. In addition, bright and dark colors are mixed ever so brilliantly to craft a world that's highly unique. Deceptively brooding environments help to create an atmosphere that's equal parts alive and haunting.

You can download Contrast for $14.99 on Xbox Live Arcade, PlayStation Network, and Steam.

Dino Run: Enter Planet D escapes extinction on Newgrounds

Dino Run: Enter Planet D

Pixeljam Games is still toiling away on Dino Run 2, but that hasn't stopped the studio from working on other hat-wearing-dinosaur-themed projects. Dino Run: Enter Planet D is the developer's latest, and it's currently playable for free on Newgrounds. Whether you played the original Dino Run or not, if you have any interest in the upcoming sequel, you should totally check out this free browser-based offering.

The action-running gameplay and hat-wearing tomfoolery that's become a mainstay of these games is successfully represented here. The colorful pixelated lands are a joy to run through, and sometimes it's hard to believe that you're escaping extinction due to how great the game looks. Enter Planet D is fun, free, and definitely worth playing if you dig arcade thrills.

You can play the game on Newgrounds and check out Pixeljam's upcoming endeavor Dino Run 2 on Kickstarter.

GameStop teams up with indie game publisher Midnight City

Blood of the Werewolf

Midnight City has already made some nice moves by backing titles such as Blood of the Werewolf and Slender: The Arrival. Now the company is teaming up with GameStop to distribute the two games through the major games retailer's digital storefront. The intention in this move is clearly to raise awareness of the two indie titles, and considering they've both been on the receiving end of some favorable reviews, that's most certainly a good thing.

You can purchase Blood of the Werewolf and Slender: The Arrival on GameStop's website for $9.99 each.

The Girl and the Robot is a tale about friendship and survival

The Girl and the Robot

I love a feel-good game about companionship, and that's exactly what The Girl and the Robot seems to be based on. The game tells the tale of a young girl and a robot soldier who are trying to escape a castle ruled by an evil queen. With her magic amulet, the girl can control the malfunctioning robot, and throughout their quest for survival, she forms a bond with her electronic companion. The unlikely duo must utilize their abilities to escape the vile castle. The girl can climb and enter small spaces, while the robot can battle enemies and move heavy items.

The Girl and the Robot is currently in development by Flying Carpets Games. It's inspired by The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Ico, Shadow of the Colossus, Final Fantasy, and Studio Ghibli's animated films. In addition, the lush worlds have this fairytale look to them that help create a backdrop for this journey of friendship.

The Kickstarter campaign for The Girl and the Robot recently met its goal, but there are still a few days left, so if you're interested, you can back the game for some sweet rewards.

Resogun proves to be one of the best next-gen offerings thus far


The fact that arguably the best next-gen offering on the market right now is brought to us by independent developer Housemarque is quite telling. The indie side of the industry has come an impressively long way in delivering quality content, and Resogun is another example of that. Aside from being a nice victory for indie devs everywhere, this space shooter is also a notable victory for game players who love quality experiences, as well as for PlayStation 4 owners.

Released exclusively for Sony's next-gen platform, Resogun offers great action, awesome visuals, and intense catharsis. Whether you play a lot of smaller titles like this or not, there's no doubt that this game has hit the next generation of video game hardware in a big way, and you should definitely check it out if you're a PlayStation 4 owner. Here's to more games making the kind of impact that Resogun has already made, whether they're fellow indie titles or mainstream triple-A products. Hey, big publishers and developers, you can learn a lot from Housemarque's latest.

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Want to talk about indie games, Kirby, or cheap pizza? Follow me on Twitter @dr_davidsanchez.

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