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Make money money photo
Make money money

Vlambeer wants YouTubers to get filthy rich off its games

A breath of fresh air
Nov 04
// Brett Makedonski
While some of the larger videogame companies have made a habit out of asserting copyright claims against YouTubers that broadcast videos of their titles, Vlambeer is taking the exact opposite approach. The Dutch indie develop...
Nuclear Throne photo
Nuclear Throne

Nuclear Throne Steam Early Access comes at premium price

Shrewd move, Vlambeer
Oct 11
// Conrad Zimmerman
The latest title from Dutch indies Vlambeer, Nuclear Throne, has appeared on Steam today in Early Access. In an interesting development, purchasing early will come at a higher price than the game's final release.  Vlambe...
Wasteland Kings renamed photo
Wasteland Kings renamed

Vlambeer is the vlambest: Wasteland Kings amiably renamed

Unfortunately, not to 'GUN GODZ: Legend of Yung Venuz: Originz'
Sep 30
// Steven Hansen
Vlambeer (Super Crate Box, Ridiculous Fishing) is the vlambest. On its website, the indie studio announced its upcoming PS4, Vita, and PC "roguelike-like" Wasteland Kings would be renamed Nuclear Throne. An employee of InExil...

Ridiculous Fishing brings in nearly $1M since launch

300,000 copies sold at $3
Aug 21
// Hamza CTZ Aziz
Vlambeer founders Jan Nijman and Rami Ismail revealed at their GDC Europe presentation that Ridiculous Fishing has sold 300,000 copies, according to Joystiq. At $3 a copy, that's $900,000 in total sales. So close to $1 millio...
Vambleer photo

Wasteland Kings debuting exclusively on Sony Platforms

Vlambeer's 'roguelike-like' to PlayStation 4, Vita
Aug 20
// Tim Sheehy
During today's conference, it was announced that Wasteland Kings would be making its console debut exclusively on Sony's PlayStation Vita and PlayStation 4, once again adding their growing line-up of indie titles.  Unvei...
Vlambeer photo

Vlambeer's 'roguelike-like' Wasteland Kings revealed

These guys don't sleep
Aug 15
// Jordan Devore
Super Crate Box, LUFTRAUSERS, and Ridiculous Fishing developer Vlambeer's next game Wasteland Kings is another minimal, arcade-style project, one that builds on its prior titles and "feels like Vlambeer." If you've tried any ...
Paul Veer photo
Get to know the people that make great videogames
Last week on Sup Holmes (now on iTunes) we welcomed passionate pixel pusher Paul Veer to the program. Paul loves videogames, so naturally, the art and design of the Kirby, Pokemon, and Sonic franchises were irresistible subj...

Sup Holmes veers into danger with Paul Veer

Jul 28 // Jonathan Holmes
Sup Holmes photo
Get to know the people that make great videogames
Today on Sup Holmes we welcome young buck art stud Paul Veer to the program. You may not know Paul's name, but if you are among the millions that have played The Hunger Games: Girl on Fire or Super Crate Box, or are one...

Vlambeer photo

Ridiculous Fishing update: Custom music option, new items

Restart a run using the knife
Jul 25
// Jordan Devore
Vlambeer has rolled out a new version of Ridiculous Fishing for iPhone and iPad, and I think you're going to love one of the changes in particular: the newly-introduced knife lets you cut your line, meaning you can restart an...
Ridiculous Fishing iOS photo
Ridiculous Fishing iOS

Free updates are in the works for Ridiculous Fishing iOS

Are more famous fish on the way?
Jun 26
// Chris Carter
As soon as I sat down with Ridiculous Fishing, I was hooked (ha!). Vlambeer had created something so simple, yet truly addictive and fun, and it was incredibly hard to put down. Fans now have a lot to look forward to, as Vla...

LUFTRAUSERS is just the right amount of crazy

Jun 07 // Patrick Hancock
LUFTRAUSERS (PC [previewed], Mac, Linux, PS3, PS Vita)Developer: VlambeerPublisher: Devolver DigitalRelease Date: Summer 2013 MSRP: $9.99  The goal in LUFTRAUSERS is to kick some serious butt. You fly a small airship tasked with blowing up other aircraft and boats. Doing so rewards points, which go towards unlocking new parts for the ship. If there is an "end game," I clearly haven't been awesome enough to get to that point, though I think I might have come close a few times.  The main draw of LUFTRAUSERS isn't beating the game, though. It’s doing better and better in order to make your ship bigger and badder. Ships are divided into three pieces: the weapon, body, and engine. Mixing and matching pieces together is really interesting, as each new combo is given a nickname by the game and even its own objectives to complete. For example, my favorite combination so far is the "Danger Zone." It uses a superboosted engine that's hard to control accurately, along with a four-homing-missile weapon system that can't be spammed but can be very powerful against a single enemy, and a Nuke body, which does tremendous damage to everything on the level after death. I love this combination because it has a pretty high skill ceiling. Not being able to spam the homing missiles (since only four can be out at once) forces the player to think about their shots, rather than simply holding down the X key in order to win. Likewise, the superboosted engine is a bit unwieldy, since "pressing the gas" launches the ship in a single direction at a very high speed. It isn't easy, but getting a good round with the Danger Zone just feels good. [embed]255634:49012:0[/embed] While watching someone play LUFTRAUSERS, it may look like a chaotic mess, but somehow everything is easily interpreted by the player. On the PC, movement is done via the arrow keys, while firing uses the X key. After a few brief learning rounds, chances are that you'll come to grips with the controls and they'll simply "click." After a while, I was bobbing and weaving around bullets and enemies like a graceful ballerina of death. I almost felt as if my hand was on auto-pilot (eh? eh?) while evading taking damage. A certain sense of clairvoyance came over me, which dramatically increased my score. Score is based off of a multiplier, which goes up by one for each kill, to a maximum of twenty. Managing the multiplier while simultaneously concentrating on avoiding damage is much easier said than done. Especially since, after taking damage, the player needs to stop accelerating and firing in order to recoup some of that lost HP. A ship's health is represented by a circle around it, only visible after taking damage. The circle has some discoloration to it, making it super easy to see while in the middle of the chaotic nonsense going on around the player. It's a great way to keep the player's eyes on the ship instead of some health bar on the corner of the screen, away from the action. Mission objectives also show up, the contents of which depend on the ship's makeup. They start off easy enough, challenging players to get a MAX combo or kill 10 enemies without letting go of the fire key. I love the objectives because it gives me something to aim for other than just a high score (though sometimes that's all it takes to complete a mission). I can go in and know what I want to accomplish before I reach my inevitable demise. The graphics are tinted in a wonderful sepia tone which looks great in motion. The music is done by KOZILEK, giving me the opportunity to remind everyone that Gun Godz exists and that you should go play it. If that's any indication of what the combo of Vlambeer and KOZILEK can accomplish, I can't wait for LUFTRAUSERS to be finished. I do wish there was some innate controller support, however, since my right hand ached pretty badly after some serious constant playtime with the game. Considering that the game will also show up on the PS3 and Vita, the odds seem pretty good. In fact, this will fit so perfectly on the Vita that it makes me a bit jealous. LUFTRAUSERS is the definition of intensity. A few minutes into a round, when the music really kicks in and you may or may not have taken some hits to your ship, your whole body tightens up as you intentionally weave in and out of oncoming bullets, firing at anything that comes your way. The game does a perfect job of making you feel like a badass. A sepia-tone badass.
LUFTRAUSERS preview photo
Some sepia tone lovin'
Vlambeer sure does make great games. Super Crate Box and Gun Godz in particular are just so finely tuned that I can't help but wonder whether the dudes that make up the Netherlands-based studio are game developer robots. I'm ...


Luftrausers goes color while Vlambeer goes live stream

Upcoming game to be developed on live stream
May 30
// Jonathan Holmes
On last Sunday's Sup Holmes (now on iTunes) we were joined by the unflappable Rami and J.W. of Vlambeer fame. The reveled the path of near-cancellation and eventual success of Ridiculous Fishing, the origins of their unique ...

Sup Holmes arrests development with Rami and J.W.

Get to know the people that make great videogames
May 26
// Jonathan Holmes
Last time we had Rami Ismail of Vlambeer on the Sup Holmes, he and his studio were probably best known for Super Crate Box. Since then, things have really exploded for the studio. Ridiculous Fishing took the world by storm o...

Ridiculous Fishing: Strategy Guide, Tips, and Tricks

Apr 06 // Niero Desu
While Ridiculous Fishing might appear to play like a straightforward variant of a bullet-hell game, there's a little more depth (sorry) than meets the eye. For example, some fish only appear during specific real-life hours of the day (try advancing iOS clock to daytime, nighttime, and midnight). Some will spawn depending on which clothing you're wearing. Certain fish can cause a silent combo chain to expedite the lure's rise to the surface, and non-linear Metroidvania strategies are the only way to unlock the rarest of creatures. Basic Mechanics Scheme. Once you're on the boat you can do one of two things: touch the jiggling thing (that's supposed to be Billy's phone, which opens your in-game menu) or tap anywhere to go fishing. You may also pause the game on the right. That covers 33% of the controls. Go deep. Tilt your phone or tablet to avoid fish on the way down. You can later purchase a chainsaw item to cut through obstacles by holding down your finger, and perform tactical hovers and attacks on the way back to the surface. Snatch up. Touch as many fish as you can on the way up. Anything that resembles a jelly fish is bad news. You'll want to collect them at least once for the first time, but otherwise they simply deduct from your score. Some jellyfish even multiply on contact, so avoid them at all cost. Jelly jerks is more like it. As you collect new species of fish, more maps will open up, allowing you to earn more money faster by having access to more valuable fish by starting mid-level in treacherous waters. I mention this now so you don't waste time grinding early levels: There will be plenty of time to do this after as you seek out rare fish later on. Shoot down. Once your lure resurfaces all of the fish are thrown into the air. Tap the fish to blow them to smithereens. Initially you're limited to a single finger, but later you can purchase multi-touch weapons for massive damage. You knew a crab boss joke was coming, get over it. The Grind When you've got some cash, go back to the surface tap Billy's phone to open the shop menu. Minor annoyance: Any time you have enough money to buy something the cash register sequence will say "1 new item" when it really means "you can afford 1 thing," not that a new unlockable has appeared. Learn the prices and set goals in your head to save yourself some time checking back and forth.  Sound plays an important factor: listen for gasoline warning and depletion instead of taking your eyes off of the lure to see your gas meter. The Byrdr is a mock Twitter app that allows you to perform real re-tweets the quirky dialogue between the game characters. Not particularly useful, but pretty funny stuff. As you unlock areas, species, and items new content will appear here. While on the topic of Twitter, you might want to follow the developer. Buy the Fishopedia from the shop as soon as you can to get some visual and text clues on where to find the first 40 or so basic fish. The rest require creative experimentation. The Shop Explained: Reels determine how deep you can fish. Buy them these upgrades when you're skilled enough to touch the bottom of an area and want to go deeper. Guns take the fish out once you've pulled them above water. Most valuable fish take quite a few shots to take down, so experiment on which best suits your play style. Some fire explosives in slow progression while others are snappier but issue less damage per shot. Lures help you snag fish on the way to the surface.  Tech is what really helps you immediately suck less: items that help you recoup from your mistakes and shortcomings as a player. You can purchase Toasters and Blow-Dryers ($2,300!) to allow you to make mistakes without being interrupted on the way down, and items like the Bowling Ball will let you begin levels halfway through to make grinding less painful. You can also use your fuel to slow the drill on the way up to nab rare fish. Misc alters the look of your character, boosts the sale value of fish, and what you wear may help you increase the odds of finding rare fish. The Emperor's Robe, for example, doubles the resale value of the fish. Each upgrade is pricey, but pays for itself over time. Why someone would pay a bounty for exploded fish parts full of lead is beyond me. Purchasing Order: The chainsaw, upgrades for your chainsaw, and more fuel for your chainsaw are the cheapest and most useful upgrades to help you score big despite your lack of skills. Even as you get better that chainsaw will be your primary saving grace, so master it! To unlock all the fish in the first three areas (to unlock the infinite mode) of the map you'll need to buy the deepest Reels. You may want to purchase the cheap tech in-between deep reels after you've found a gun that best fits your style. I'll get to that in a second:  The most expensive gun in the game isn't necessarily the best for all players. There aren't any "bad" mid-tier weapons in this game, just some that are slower than others. If you know your accuracy sucks you'll want to compensate with automatic weapons like the Uzi or Mini-Guns. If you're a natural marksman go for the stronger Shotguns, Bazookas, and Magnums. The game doesn't seem to force your play style either way. You can't see anything under 250 or so meters unless you've purchased one of the two lantern upgrades. If you make it that far and don't own one, fire up the chainsaw and wiggle your screen hoping for the best.  Map Order: There are four basic maps: Home Waters, Stormy Seas, Arctic Floes, and The Maelstrom. As soon as map is unlocked, you can move back and forth at anytime. The first three levels are relatively shallow and have quasi-boss characters at the end of them, and depending on your actions you can make other special rare fish appear only in the deep. Defeating some of the larger fish will make special apparel appear in the store, like a squid hat. You don't have to beat the third boss to unlock the fourth level: simply focus on gathering more unique species by purchasing reels to unlock it. The Maelstrom is the best place to grind for cash, so the faster you arrive the faster you can get great items. Common Sense: You can't do a quick rage-quit of a failed run, so boost often. The best way to boost is by making short, light taps to make it last. Don't hold it down unless you really need to. Get comfortable. How you sit and how you cradle the device will greatly determine how nimble your motions will be, and your game session fatigue level. If you want to smear your chest with Cheetos crumbs in bed then be my guest, but you're likely to get better results by keeping both elbows out and keeping your back straight. Hunching slightly down also puts the center of gravity in your favor, giving you better tilt precision. Videogames are serious business, especially if you have an older heavier tablet working those biceps. "The cheap upgrades suck more than the expensive upgrades." -Socrates (probably). No, seriously, max out every item category before trying to max out your Fishopedia or you're just making things harder for yourself.  As stated in the purchase order: If your weapon is good enough to knock out most fish in the air, focus on chainsaw and gasoline upgrades, but you'll want to get everything. As soon as you upgrade your drill with some gas, you're going to be tempted to just barrel down with the drill blazing, cutting everything in sight. Its fun, but its the easiest way to lose fast. Pace yourself and only use the drill as a life saver and you'll go much deeper. Navigating the fish Matrix: Look ahead of the lure, period. Don't look at your meter, don't look at your gas, don't look at the sides of the screen. Burn your eyeballs a few notches past your lure and learn to master your hitbox as you would with any bullet-hell shooter. Not all fish are procedurally drawn. There are definitive schools of fish that you can predict encountering at a certain meter limit, like the first two dense clusters of House Boat snails in the Stormy Seas. You can learn some parts of the level, and strategically save gas for the areas that give you the most trouble. Don't navigate the entire screen trying to dodge objects at random. Hold your ground and move out of the way as needed, taking the time to understand patterns and make mental marks of what depths the severe bottlenecks are located. Some are just easier to drill through than navigate. Resist temptation to just jam down the drill: pump it like a car break as needed. You'll get way more mileage this way than a panicked descent down. Tunnel vision will be the end of you. Keep the screen a decent distance away from your face and look for the openings before they touch your ship. After awhile your focus will rarely be on your ship, but rather where you want to be instead The best place to grind cash for items, hands down, is the Maelstrom.  You're earning the most dollars per minute here than the other sites, overall. I would recommend rushing through the other parts and arriving here ASAP to enjoy the best retirement. Catching The Rarest Fish Not all rare fish are sitting at the bottom of the ocean. Keep your eyes peeled for fast-moving fish near the surface of the early levels as well. Some fish only appear once per level. Most fish marked as "location unknown" are deep in the Maelstrom. A fish is considered captured when killed underwater, in the air, or when tech is used. It is absolutely worth ruining a good run and smashing through all your second-chance items just to catch one species you've never seen before, as some spawn very rarely. This rare fish guide demonstrates how to catch everything. I did notice that certain conditions across other guides vary, so there may be multiple ways to make certain fish appear. I liked this one because it has pretty pictures and was written by a real human. Setting your iOS system clock to midnight, evening, and daytime can affect the availability of creatures, like the Mimic and the sea horses. "Hey, Rich Girls." Many of the ultra-rare fish are not available until you've reached far enough in one of the levels to view the game credits. This is what the Fishopedia means by "come back in the future." This Twitter account has more great fishing tips. BONUS TIPS!  A developer from Vlambeer was gracious enough to personally review our guide for unsucky-ness. He would like to add these two sagely pieces of advice:   Avoid the carrier fish, they will screw you up. Use chainsaw during descend on high-value, high-strength fishes. They earn you the same amount of money when killed by the chainsaw. Do you have tips of your own that you'd like to share?  Sound off in the comments below!
Ridiculously satisfying photo
Requires a ridiculous amount of time
Destructoid loves Ridiculous Fishing. We can't stop talking about its clever design, quirky vernacular, and unmistakable prismatic aesthetic. Whenever I see strangers on the train playing the likes of trashy iOS games like&nb...


Flying high on Luftrausers with Vlambeer

Another rapid-fire interview with Jonathan Holmes
Mar 25
// Conrad Zimmerman
Holmes talks with the ever-charming Rami Ismail of Vlambeer to help those of you with short attention spans learn more about Luftrausers, coming soon to almost all the things (PC, Mac, Linux, PS3, PS Vita). Check out more of Holmes' Talk Fast interview series!
Luftrausers photo

Luftrausers to release on PS3 and Vita

Vlambeer's dogfight expands platforms
Mar 22
// Conrad Zimmerman
Devolver Digital has announced that they will be publishing Vlambeer's Luftrausers on PlayStation Network for PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita. The aerial combat title, due to release this spring, will also be available on...

Ridiculous Fishing dev thinks free-to-play is mostly evil

'Almost impossible' to do microtransactions in a good way
Mar 18
// Jim Sterling
Ridiculous Fishing is a game that looks ripe for microtransaction exploitation, but developer Vlambeer has opted instead to charge a flat $2.99 and let the chips fall where they may. The studio's belief that free-to-play mode...

Review: Ridiculous Fishing

Mar 16 // Jonathan Holmes
Ridiculous Fishing (iPad, iPhone [reviewed])Developer: VlambeerPublisher: VlambeerReleased: March 14, 2013MSRP: $2.99 Like real-life fishing, Ridiculous Fishing is simple enough on the surface, but once you sink past that surface, you'd be surprised at the depths you'll plunge to. The game utilizes three phases of interconnected gameplay types to make every round of casting into a three-act adventure in and of itself.  First is the "dodge" phase. After casting your line, your goal is to dodge as many fish as possible in order to make your way as low as you can go. This runs counter-intuitive to your fishing instincts, as it pays off when you get to phase two. The farther down the briney depths you sink, the more types of fish you pass, with each new breed being more exotic and valuable than the last. [embed]248860:47604:0[/embed] When you hit a fish or reach the end of your line, your line starts its way back to the surface. That's when the "catch" phase begins. Now you play the aggressor and work to catch all those fish that you ran in fear from while passing them by in the "dodge" phase. The more fish you grab, the more fish you'll reach the surface with for the "shoot" phase. This is the part of the game where you fling your fish into the air and blast as many of them as you can with various firearms. It is ridiculous.  These three phases work on the "Pac-Man principles" of design. You're first made to feel afraid of making contact with other in-game characters, putting you in a nail-biting mode of heightened awareness as you negotiate a maze of threats and obstacles. That tension builds until the "power-pellet moment" of phase two, where the tables are turned and you work to aggressively gobble up everything that you were running from mere moments before. That rush of "get it while you can" is then turned up a notch in phase three where you have seconds to cash in on the lives of your defenseless quarry. It's an amazing formula, which is probably why the game's predecessor Radical Fishing was "admired" enough to be shamelessly ripped off by a-game-which-will-remain-nameless-as-to-reduce-how-successful-it-may-become. Suffice to say, Vlambeer (the developers of Radical Fishing and Ridiculous Fishing) had something to prove here. They had to make a game that not only made Radical Fishing totally obsolete, but would also completely outclass the game that ripped them off as well.  Vlambeer's personal drive to create the very best iteration of the Radical Fishing concept has paid off for all of us. Everything about the game has been maxed out in both content and quality. There is huge amount of fish to catch, each with their own behaviors and level of scarcity. Some of which actual steal money from you if you catch them, which is a great way to turn the the formula on its head. There are fish that can only be caught at certain times of day, in certain areas of the map, or otherwise require some unconventional means of discovery. There are even boss fish battles. No expense was spared in the creation of this world of fish and the people who kill them. The more types of fish you discover, the more areas on the world map you unlock, and the more money you're likely to acquire to use toward purchases of the game's many (often hilarious) items. There are loads of different guns, lures, and other items to collect, all of which add gameplay twists, but are never overpowered. This speaks to the game's finely tuned difficulty curve, which never leaves you feeling hopeless, but always gives you the idea that you may do just a little bit better after just "one more game." When you're not fishing, you can explore the game's largely optional narrative through the in-game Twitter parody Byrdr. What seems like a inconsequential trifle at first quickly unfolds to be quite an emotionally charged tale, which makes sense considering that it the ARG was written by The Stanley Parable creator Davey Wreden. The theme of redemption and questioning of self worth are perfectly in tune with the life of a fisherman. The art direction here utilizes an angular mosaic style that evoke the strengths of sprite-based graphics without leaning on the idea of "retro" appeal. The abstract look exudes an unpredictable, playful character that's the perfect fit for a game called "Ridiculous Fishing." The music is simple and strange, also a perfect fit for a game with such a name. Yes, perfect is the word for Ridiculous Fishing. Everything comes together to deliver a cohesive whole that works to alternate between making you smile, making you wonder, and most of all, making you want more. Thankfully, the game is quick to offer more. Just when you think you've seen the end, there's a new area, new item, a new kick in the storyline, or new fish to savor.  Ingeniously designed, continuously compelling, painstakingly crafted, dripping with personality, packed with content -- I like everything about Ridiculous Fishing.
Ridiculous Fishing review photo
It's the best fishing game
A lot of great game developers are fascinated with fishing. Pokémon, Ocarina of Time, Twilight Princess, and Animal Crossing all feature the option to fish. Earthbound/Mother creator Shigesato Itoi created a ...

Ridiculous Fishing photo
Ridiculous Fishing

Ridiculous Fishing casts its line March 14

Coming soon to iOS
Mar 05
// Conrad Zimmerman
Vlambeer has announced the release date for Ridiculous Fishing, which will be arriving on iOS March 14. I was fiddling around with the game on my iPad over the weekend, and it's some highly addictive stuff. If you've played ...
Mojam is over photo
Mojam is over

Mojam is over, Space Hunk is here

Games about pizza, kittens, and DINOSAURS
Feb 25
// Patrick Hancock
Mojam, the five-day indie game-creating jam spearheaded by Mojang, has ended. Nine titles from six developers were created in this short time, making me seriously consider how I spend most of my time. Hopefully you found some...

Humble Bundle Mojam 2 is going on right now

Give to charity, get some game jam games
Feb 20
// Darren Nakamura
This morning, Mojang and the Humble Bundle team kicked off the Humble Bundle Mojam 2, a game jam whose proceeds go entirely to the charities Block by Block and the Electronic Frontier Foundation. As usual for the Humble Bund...

Vlambeer's Super Crate Bundle available to order online

Limited edition indie collection made widely available for first time
Dec 03
// Conrad Zimmerman
From inside the Indie Megabooth at Pax Prime this year, the merchants at Level Up Studios were selling these limited edition Super Crate Box bundles celebrating Vlambeer's second anniversary. The Super Crate Bundle included a...

LA Game Space fund offers new games from big names

Katamari creator, Vlambeer, and more to release new titles
Nov 24
// Jonathan Holmes
We've talked about the L.A. Game Space kickstarter and its absurdly generous rewards before, but they bear repeating. Gaijin Games is putting the backer who donated $5,000 into their upcoming game Runner 2 as a playable char...

Super Crate Box is free on iOS today

New Commodore 64 version announced
Oct 22
// Jordan Devore
It's somehow been two years since Vlambeer released Super Crate Box for PC. I distinctly remember Conrad getting obsessed with the minimalistic arcade game for a good long time and eventually causing me to get all wrapped up ...

Indie Nation: Venus Patrol games

Oct 13 // Patrick Hancock
Gun Godz has a z instead of an s in its name for a reason: it doesn't give a shit. This is a pure, unadulterated, and enjoyable romp in the vein of older first-person shooter games like Doom or Duke Nukem. Each level will ask you to accomplish three goals: kill everyone, get all the items, and perform a speedrun. Doing these objectives will net you Triangles. At least, that's what I'm calling them. As you accrue Triangles, you begin to unlock secret stages, which are easily the best levels in the game. Gun Godz is so unapologetic it hurts. That kind of rush that only comes from using a minigun to mow down an entire room of enemies is something I haven't had the joy of experiencing in a very long time. You know exactly what you're getting while running through the regular stages, which is exactly what makes the secret levels so much more entertaining. The standard levels are simple and effective, but it almost seems as if they're just easing you in to the secret levels. While the standard levels are linear murder-filled romps, the secret levels are essentially puzzles. For example, the first secret level gives you as few bullets as possible for you to clear out the level, so if you mess up even once then you've failed. I don't want to spoil the others, but they are each unique. If you ever read about Gun Godz and the writer fails to mention the music, stage a protest. The music in Gun Godz is…..well here, just listen to the title music: [embed]236275:45343:0[/embed] It's hip-hop, it's electronic, it's freakin' weird. It fits the oddball and hectic theme of the game incredibly well, however and I wouldn't have it any other way. Oh god, I can't stop listening to it! All I can say is thank you, Kozilek, for reminding me that I love a style of music I've never heard before. Capsule is an incredible game. What it manages to pull off with so little is astounding. It's a purely atmospheric game that gets me as tense and nervous as any big-time horror title ever has (aside: I am a scaredy-cat when it comes to this stuff). All Capsule consists of is traveling through space, looking for various space stations to dock at while keeping your Power and Oxygen in check. Each space station also has some message logs that help set the eerie tone and string you along to each new area. Capsule has both a minimalistic look and feel, but that doesn't detract from the game at all; in fact, it works in its favor. The sound design is the true star of Capsule. The sound is done by Robin Arnott, perhaps most famous for his work on Deep Sea, a terrifying audio-only game about escaping "unseen terrors." The sound of hulking metal moving through space combined with the harrowing sound of breathing makes for one of the most intense experiences ever. It acts as a staunch reminder that the sound design in videogames is just as important as any other aspect. Too often do consumers get caught up on the graphic fidelity of the game and too often are the smaller -- but just as important -- details overlooked and ignored. Gun Godz and Capsule are two very different, yet excellent games. 
The Sound of Music
Venus Patrol is a great idea. An indie-focused website hosted by none other than Brandon Boyer who, among other things, is the chairman of the Independent Game Festival. There's a subscription model for Venus Patrol that nets...


Vlambeer declares October 'Super Crate Box month'

Indie developer celebrates game by releasing new versions, updates and more
Oct 03
// Conrad Zimmerman
Two years ago in October, Super Crate Box released for PC and effectively destroyed my life for that month. Those dutch bastards at Vlambeer aren't done with crates by a long shot and have now laid claim to the ent...

Indie game site Venus Patrol launches with awesome games

Sep 11
// Allistair Pinsof
Venus Patrol has been "really honestly actually finally launched," according to creator and indie game curator/journalist/adventurer Brandon Boyer. One click on this hyperlink will prove that he is in fact not a scheming...

PAX: Vlambeer's Luftrausers soars

Sep 03 // Conrad Zimmerman
[embed]233935:44875[/embed] The pluralization of the prior title for this new game is apt. Where the old game had but one model of plane for you to pilot, Luftrausers will feature lots of options to choose from through combinations of "cannon," "body," and, "engine" parts. Weapon options vary from burning lasers to spread cannons and explosive ordinance which fills the screen with a flower of hot death. Engines affect rate of acceleration, top speed and turning ability, while the body of a craft can determine its ability to withstand damage and repair itself. In the demo I played at PAX Prime, these elements were selected entirely at random, giving the player a different combination of abilities with every play. I don't remember exactly how many games I played (maybe a dozen) but I also don't remember running into any of the parts more than twice during that time. It would take a second to figure out how best to pilot each plane -- acceleration and turning are highly responsive, as a general rule, but how much and in what direction can be in question -- but it would only be a second before moving felt natural.  Despite every ship configuration playing a little bit different (in some cases, like a body that takes little damage from collisions but crumples under fire, a lot different), that core mechanic of healing when not firing still holds the whole thing together. Even when the situation seems desperate, there almost always seems to be a way out if you can pilot skillfully or shoot accurately. The trick is in trying to figure out which way is best in measures of milliseconds. Every ship configuration also has its own soundtrack. Luftrausers' soundtrack, composed again by DJ KOZILEK, will be as modular in its design as the Luftrauser itself. The music is being composed in such a way that the individual components of the craft have specific music associated with them, meaning that different combinations will produce different background music while you're playing. The game would be utterly incomplete without the imposing, militaristic score and while I didn't specifically notice the differences from one plane to the next while I was playing, my attention was fairly fixated on little red planes and lots of explosions and it's always hard to focus on audio in a loud convention hall setting. Luftrausers is more visually complex than its predecessor as well, featuring as many as six (!) colors on-screen at the same time. Kidding aside, graphic elements like clouds and the water successfully evoke a sense of depth despite the game being very obviously two-dimensional in play. The flat silhouettes of your plane and enemy planes twist and dance and yet never cease being solid, flat colors. And, thankfully, the resolution is dramatically greater, lending a crispness to everything and allowing the stark contrast of the graphics to pop. Oh, and you know that evil thing developers do where your game ends and the only thing you have to do to start another one is press a button? Yeah, that's here too, and I'd just like to apologize to the people who were standing behind me, waiting for their turn to play at PAX. Blame those canny Dutch bastards for making their game too easy to be absorbed by. Devolver Digital will be publishing Luftrausers, as they did with Vlambeer's contribution to the Serious Sam series, The Random Encounter. It's currently planned for release near the end of this year on PC and Mac, with a console release expected next year.
Dutch indies delivering yet another addictive, minimalist game
I make no secret of my love for the guys at Vlambeer. Their approach to design, making games that are instantly understandable yet endlessly challenging, hits at the very core of what I think makes for timeless entertainment....


Vlambeer is bringing Luftrausers to PC and Mac, consoles

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