indie developers doing time

Last Friday 42 Dutch indie developers were locked up in a former prison in Utrecht for the 8th edition of INDIGO. The devs filled a complete cell block showcasing their games. A group of VR developers took control of the prison’s gym to showcase their games for HTC VIVE and Oculus Rift.

Visiting hours were from 10 am to 10 pm, so Force Field employees took a field day to visit the in(die)mates and VR relatives. Esther, Alan, and Maarten give you their VR favorites.

Steeeve

Steeeve is a 2-player psychological horror room-scale VR game. One player, the prey, wears a HTC VIVE Virtual Reality headset while holding a controller that acts as their light source. This player will need to traverse the room and stay alive for as long as possible, and ultimately locate and kill the hunter. The other player takes on the role of Steve, the hunter, holding the second controller. That player will need to catch the prey. The concept of Steeeve was conceived and prototyped in 48 hours during the Global Game Jam 2017.

Maarten says, "What I particularly liked about Steeeve was the 2-player experience with just one VIVE set. When taking on the role of the non-VR player holding the controller, you are invisible to the person wearing the HMD. “However, you don’t know when your movement causes things to move in the VR environment, giving away your approximate position. “An anxious experience for both the players, which would be great for VR arcades."

Panzerwehr 1949 In April 1949, the Third Battle of Stalingrad is about to begin. Infantry has long been made obsolete in the irradiated battlefield. In their place, a new breed of quadrupedal war machines roam the ruined streets of Stalingrad: German Jaegers and Soviet Samokhods. Elite pilots of both empires try to score a decisive blow and bring an end to the war. Panzerwehr 1949 is a hardcore World War 2 era mech simulator exclusively for VR headsets, hand-crafted for maximum immersion, inspired by classics such as Steel Battalion and Mech Warrior. The game requires the player to first master the controls of their cockpit before they can bring the full potential of their walkers to bear.

Alan says, "People who like simulation games controlling big mechs and can’t get enough of the WWII vibe will love this game. It’s the perfect match of those styles. It’s slow paced, hard, and can be frustrating at times. “The developer paid a lot of attention to the tank interiors, which makes it really immersive. “Flicking all kinds of switches also has a nice feel to it."

The Red Stare From the creators of Heist Night and Defend Your Friend, The Red Stare is a room-scale VR game about spying on communist spies from your apartment window. You are an American agent in the 1950s on a stakeout, gathering evidence on your neighbors, figuring out what role they play, with the goal of eventually identifying which one of them is a Communist spy. You do all of this from the confines of your apartment, receiving information from your phone and fax machine, using intel from files on your desk, and taking pictures that you can fax to your handler to verify your suspicions.

Esther says, "The interactions with the environment makes this game really immersive. It honestly feels like you are there in that apartment on a stake-out, observing people’s activities. After I finished the game it took me some time to realize I wasn’t in the experience anymore."

Force Field is looking forward to partnering with INDIGO again for next year’s edition! All photos of INDIGO 2017 can be found here, and the complete overview of games here.