In the era of old Wild West: One bullet in your revolver is all you need to survive and earn respect. One Shot is a mobile game from Mike Studio, a solo game developer based in the Philippines. The game is pure and simple: kill the enemy and earn your score with just one bullet.
Especially in recent years, the German video expo Gamescom has developed into an important meeting point for game developers from all over the world to present their works to a larger audience. Southeast Asia was also strongly represented last year. Now, the trade fair had to switch to a purely digital concept due to the pandemic. Unlike in the past, the developers were now able to at least save the high travel costs – but does that mean in return that more games from Southeast Asia could be seen and played? We must admit: Compared to last year, there were fewer surprises this time, but a lot of new things from games which were already announced. In this article we will discuss these games and the possible reasons for the cautious participation in general.
Renowned Filipino game studio Ranida Games (makers of Bayani) announced that PBA Basketball Slam: Arcade Edition will be released on Steam Early Access in August 2020. The Arcade Edition is the PC version of the popular mobile game Basketball Slam 2020, which features the teams and players of Philippine Basketball Association (PBA).
Due to this year’s pandemic, many gaming events had to be canceled or replaced by online presentations. Therefore, probably more game developers than ever decided to contribute playable versions of their PC games to The Steam Game Festival – Summer Edition 2020. In addition to live streams and Q&As with the developers, the hands-on experience is the main focus of this event. Fortunately, there are also many titles from Southeast Asia, for example from Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, the Philippines and Vietnam. So that you don’t lose track of all those games, we have this list of 15+1 game demos from Southeast Asia that you can try out from home and for free between June 16, 2020 (10 AM PDT) and June 22, 2020 (10 AM PDT).
Flickering neon lights. Skyscrapers wherever you look. This city is sinking into a swamp of crime and violence. Right in the middle stands a young woman with colored hair. Pumping electro beat. Slash! Before you know it, a room full of corpses. Welcome to Lithium City. This game feels like a fever dream: confusing, sweat inducing, overwhelming with stimuli and yet somehow gripping. Lithium City manages to combine fun and frustration like no other game without forcing you to put that gamepad down for good if you take the challenge.
Stronger together – this applies not only to many social movements around the world, but also to projects in indie game development. Not only effectiveness but also creativity are boosted when creative people from different countries and cultures come together to develop games together. Southeast Asia is a very diverse region with many cultures, languages, religions and of course also different possibilities and approaches to game development. While individual countries already have a very distinctive development scene, there are also regions in Southeast Asia in which game development plays a subordinate role, if at all.
What do you get when you combine the tactical mechanics of XCOM with the card-based gameplay from Slay the Spire? If it is up to Drix Studios from the Philippines, the result is called Grand Guilds. This concept was also able to find enough fans on Kickstarter and the finished game has now finally been released. You can find out in this review whether Grand Guilds successfully linked the popular mechanics of its role models and how we liked the rest of the game.
We’ve probably all been there. Sometimes, you’re just itching to play a new game, but work and life left you tired and stressed out enough – picking up another 30h epic may seem too big a task. Fortunately, there are lots of great, shorter games out there and plenty of them can be found on Itch.io. Browsing through the site’s extensive library can be a task in itself, however, but we’re here to help. We’ve selected 4 games from our collection of indie games from Southeast Asia you should give a try the next time you’ve got that itch.
Is a good thing worth waiting for? When the Kickstarter campaign for Graywalkers: Purgatory started in September 2014, no one expected the ambitious project would have to face such an odyssey. The first release was announced for 2017, but the game never came out. A good six years after the crowdfunding campaign, the first official version of the post-apocalyptic turn-based role-playing game was finally released in Steam’s Early Access program. We have taken a closer look at Graywalkers: Purgatory and will tell you whether the project has arrived where it was supposed to go.
The end of 2019 is very close, so let’s look forward to the upcoming year! After Vietnam, which gaming highlights await us from the Philippines? The country has been producing many titles of ever-increasing quality for all kinds of platforms and is known as a pioneer for Southeast Asian game development. Among the best games of 2019 from the Philippines were Bayani, Towertale or Love Esquire. Let’s now take a look at some confirmed releases for 2020!
Towertale by Misou Games is an ambitious project for a dev team of only five people. A sidescrolling hardcore boss rush about four adventurers fighting their way up a wish-granting tower, the game boasts a story mode for each adventurer, complete with their own unique dialogue, endings, and cutscenes, and a free mode that lets players fight any unlocked boss with any unlocked character. It certainly aims high, and I’m glad to report that Towertale actually hits its lofty goals. Mostly.
As part of the Berlin gamesweek, this year’s A MAZE festival opened its doors from April 10 to 13 to present talks, workshops and exhibitions from the field of art and culture and playful media. Being the Gamescom’s little artsy-fartsy sister, inclined visitors had the chance to experience mind-blowing VR installations, crazy indie games and other media that go way beyond mainstream gaming. Main topics were inclusion, politics, playfulness, and experimental visuals – all of it with a great and wide international focus
When you browse the Steam catalogue, especially the “indie section”, you’ll get quickly overwhelmed by the number of roguelikes available. As another game in that genre, is Dungeon Souls from the Philippines really worth your time?
Bayani is a fighting game on a 2D plane with 3D environments, similar to the latest Street Fighter games. It features 8 fighters that are fantasy re-imaginations of heroes and heroines from the Philippines such as writer Jose Rizal or revolutionary Gregoria Alvarez de Jesus. The battle arenas will be inspired by famous landmarks in the Philippines. But that’s not all: Filipino music, collectibles such as the book “Noli me tangere”, unlockable traditional costumes and of course background stories inspired by the history of the Philippines. Ranida Games wants to deliver a truly local game with a gameplay that can reach a global community of players.
We want to give credit to all those little gems we played only for too little time for a proper review but still deserve your attention. This time we present to you indie games from Singapore, the Philippines, Vietnam and Malaysia.
Assassin’s Creed Origins – Helped by Southeast Asian Game Developers, Ubisoft delivers a new Open World Highlight
Ubisoft has completely changed the mechanism of Assassin’s Creed Origins and is much different from the previous series. I really liked the changes, but not all of them. The process of leveling and also the short storyline made my game experience less enjoyable in some moments. But in terms of exploration, I must admit that Assassins Creed Origins provided me with a more immersive experience. Ubisoft really made real the dreams of open-world gaming enthusiasts in this latest entry.