Tuesday 29 April 2014

C64 16KB Cartridge Game Development Competition!

The fourth RGCD C64 16KB cartridge game development competition concluded on the 7th of December at midnight with 16 new games (and one cartridge re-release) for the C64.

BulletWaltz (Ouya)

By now I think most people will know I am a big fan of simple concept games, So when James told me to check out Rocky Hong's BulletWaltz late one Tuesday evening I immediately added it to my console via Ouya's handy 'send to console' feature on their web site. I got myself a few hours shut eye and fired it up first thing the next day.

...I really am glad I got some sleep first.

Antichromatic (Ouya)

In these golden days of independent gaming we have many ways of getting our fix of self flagellation - it's almost a hallmark of indie games in general to be harder than mere mortals can comprehend. On some occasions they cross the line a little too much and make us question if the game is to blame for our unending torture or does it come from a dark, primal place within us that begs for punishment that forces us to persevere?

My first play-through of Antichromatic was going at a fair pace initially, I had beaten a good 80% of the game with only a handful of lives lost. The scar tissue on my thumbs from Super Meat Boy & N+ went a long way to prepare me for the punishment I was now enduring but all my prior 'hardcore indie badges of honor' went flying out my window thanks to one particular room.

That one evil room. An unrelenting, hate powered, and utterly detestable pit of despair just 3 rooms from the end...

Friday 25 April 2014

Play Blackpool Indies (Part Two)

Following on from my previous article, here's an update on the indies showcasing their games at Play Blackpool next weekend. There is still space available in the main expo hall (tables with power costing between £150-£250 each), so drop me a line if it sounds like something you'd be interested in :)

TL;DR? The list of indie exhibitors now consists of Megadev, Ludophobia, Retroburn, Pixel Trip Studios, Ben Bradley, Cake Collective, Force of Habit, Clockwork Cuckoo, Psychotic Software, Boneloaf, Sinister Soft, Adam Nasralla and Rumpus Animation.

Tuesday 22 April 2014

Psyboarfunk / The Game Is Apaw! Poster Set Available!

The first of a planned series of posters from a variety of C64 artists, RGCD present two stunning limited edition A2 prints of Ilija "iLKke" Melentijević's recent artwork; Psyboarfunk and The Game Is Apaw!

Originally released in an unfinished state at the Syntax 2013 demoparty in Melborne (where it achieved 2nd place in the Mixed Graphics compo), Psyboarfunk is a C64 multicolour rework of an old four-colour piece by Ilija. The final version used here was completed a week after the party.

The Game Is Apaw! was Ilija's entry in the 2013 Plain PETSCII Graphics Competition held over at CSDB, where it achieved 5th place out of over 100 submissions. The Game Is Apaw! was composed entirely using the standard CBM ASCII character set, and is based on an 8-colour cat avatar he pixelled back in 2011.

This set includes both A2 posters (420mm x 594mm in size), created from screen captures then optimised and converted into CMYK format by Steve Day. The posters are numbered individually on the reverse side and are sent rolled together in a reinforced poster tube. Only 100 sets will ever be available for sale.

The Psyboarfunk and The Game Is Apaw! set is available now from our online store, priced at £15. Shipping is £5 for UK (because of the crazy parcel-size rules), £4 to mainland Europe and £5 for the rest of the world.

Rubble 'N' Strafe (PC/Android/Ouya)

[This review was originally written by J. Monkman for indiegames.com, and has been reposted here with the editors' permission].

Based on an ancient Amstrad CPC 'classic', Rubble 'N' Strafe from one-man studio Far From Sleep is a near-perfect example of rose-tinted nostalgia done right. An endless flier/shmup hybrid (yet refreshingly NOT a Flappy Bird clone), RNS clearly draws its inspiration from Durell's Harrier Attack, bringing the 8-bit gameplay up to date by adding the unpredictability of procedural generation and some heavy duty explosive action to the mix. Oh, and the crashes are awesome, almost to the point where you'll want to nose dive into the enemy troops to see how much destruction is caused by your hopeless plane as the wreckage tumbles through watch-towers, skyscrapers and ... flocks of incendiary sheep.

Monday 21 April 2014

FTL: Advanced Edition (PC/Mac/iOS/Linux)

We already reviewed the incredible FTL (Faster Than Light) a while ago so there is no point in waffling on, safe to say it was incredibly well received and if you don't own it already then go and see the ships medic. Immediately.

FTL: Advanced Edition is an expansion to the original release with new technologies, story elements and music. To sum it up so simply does the game a huge disservice. Subset have given the content to their existing customers for no additional charge (take note EA), in fact if you have Steam installed and you have this game in your list it has most likely already updated to this version (take note EA). Should you have purchased this game elsewhere simply download the latest version from your account page, and well... it's not rocket science.

Aqua Kitty: Milk Mine Defender (PC)

It's fair to say that if you put something cat-centric on the internet people are going to go absolutely nuts for it. Combining the notoriously arrogant yet loveable pets with the gameplay of Defender makes for a game that I'm surprised hasn't already taken over half the planet and made us its slaves.

Aqua Kitty: Milk Mine Defender is shockingly cute. Throwing all "man's man" tendencies to one side I just want to fuss its fur ALL DAY LONG. Tiny little kitties underwater mining milk while a kitty submarine fighter-craft zips overhead flying topcover and blowing the shit out of robotic fish submarines? It's up there with unicorns puking rainbows over each other in the "d'awww" stakes.

Sunday 20 April 2014

RGCD Easter Eggs: Hidden Games, Screens and Glitches

Happy Easter! Today not only have we announced the launch of a new game, but we're also giving away the secrets to activating the many Easter Eggs we've hidden on our cartridges. Here at RGCD we love hiding stuff in the last few remaining bytes of ROM space at the end of a game release, so expect more of these to come in the future. Previously only known by a select few and never officially published before, here is a full list of them all!

Saturday 19 April 2014

Phase Out Cartridge Available! (Commodore 64)

"For countless aeons you've waited in exile beyond the limits of the universe, but now your time for revenge is at hand. In your possession are the ancient stones of the Eternal Ones - and with them the power to overthrow the Gods and eradicate all of creation!

50 Phase-Out sequences are all that stand between you and the end of the universe, your one and only chance to undo all the work of your ethereal oppressors and to rebuild the Cosmos to your own design..."

Developed by Ernst Neubeck and Simon Quernhorst, Phase Out is a game that will put your puzzle-solving skills to the ultimate test. Play the role of a vengeful banished deity and bring an end to the universe by completing the 50 ancient stone challenges of the Eternal Ones. Fail and you'll remain in exile for ever, succeed and unlimited power will be yours!

Limited to 50 individually numbered cartridges (each box bearing an RGCD COA sticker), these won't last long so grab your copy from our online store today!

Friday 4 April 2014

End of Line for Unlimited Edition?

This past year RGCD was involved in two of the highest profile C64 game launches for over a decade (Super Bread Box and Bomberland). We've continued to build up an awesome back catalogue of releases, including new titles for the PC, Jaguar and AmigaOS.

Yet this is also the second year in a row that RGCD has made a net loss, despite the fact that 2013-14 saw us selling more units than ever before. Admittedly, compared to 2012-13 the loss was only marginal, but still - a loss is a loss, no matter how small.

So what went wrong? Well, the simple answer is this: dead stock.

Tuesday 1 April 2014

Commodore 64: A Visual Compendium (Micro Hexagon Exclusive!)

I don't normally get enthusiastic about Kickstarters, but when Sam "MrSID" Dyer dropped me a line asking if RGCD would like to be involved in the production of his C64 coffee table book, I was hyped. Not only was this an opportunity to be involved in a book about my favourite 8-bit computer, but it also helped solve an internal dilemma here at RGCD towers – to release, or not to release a limited cartridge version of Micro Hexagon.

You see, following the announcement of the competition results Paul Koller emailed me saying that there was no way he could enhance Micro Hexagon any further. There was no CPU time left at all, no possibility of additional wall patterns and the only feasible improvement would have been additional in-game music and sampled speech before and after each play – neither of which would have elevated the game enough to warrant the price-tag of a more expensive 64KB cartridge. So, Micro Hexagon will only ever exist in its 16KB form - and we were both on the fence regarding whether or not people would buy it on cartridge, despite coming second place in the 2013 RGCD compo.