I usually don’t write about something else than photography, but this time I feel is somehow my duty. As you know I work in the gaming industry. As an industry, it has little margin for something that is unsure to sell, something experimental, something more art oriented rather than existing bad recipes. So basically “the industry” only manufactures the same existing games over and over, with the same compromises made for accessibility and mass-market, the same action packed brainless, soulless, kitschy pieces of shit. Of course there are exceptions even in the high budget area with some developers taking huge risks to push onto the market games that have potential not to sell. Sometimes they make it, most of the time they don’t. And it’s a real pity since gaming platforms have the potential to push art to a new evolutionary step through interactivity, where the viewer becomes a part of the art piece. And that can be the one and only final step in modern arts, it cannot go beyond total immersion, it can only evolve around this idea along with technological evolution.


So anyway, this little article came to my mind as I played one of the most beautiful and challenging games I ever saw . And  that game is BRAID (homepage ). So beautifully written, such impressive hand painted graphics, such haunting score and story  and all this in the form of an apparent simple platform game that resembles Mario  and that is the work of only one man. Well, I won’t say more, others have done it better, however try it, enjoy, buy it. Buy the soundtrack too . It’s available on a nice little site called magnatune and you can actually pay how much you want or think it’s worth, in the true spirit of independent music  production.
Thanks to digital distribution like steam, xbla, psn, now indie developers have a real chance of standing out and actually make some money off their hard work.

And, to stay ontopic, I put together a little list of similar games, some of them from my own gaming experience, some of them thanks to Dominus and his page.

World of goo (homepage, trailer)
goo

And yet it moves (homepage, trailer )

ayim

Flower (homepage, trailers )
flower

The Dishwasher (homepage, trailer )
dishwasher

Audiosurf (homepage)
audiosurf

Portal. Well, not exactly indie, but sponsored by valve ( homepage)
portal

The Graveyard (homepage)
graveyard

Darwinia (homepage)

darwinia

And some work in progress but with huge potential:

Limbo (homepage)

limbo

The unfinished swan (homepage)
swan

Machinarium (homepage)
machinarium

Love (homepage)
love

And perhaps some older games, not so low budget, not sow indie but very much art in one way or another

Shadow of the Colossus (homepage)
shadow

Okami (homepage)
okami

 

 

That’s about it for now, I will update the list as soon as I find something interesting.

 

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