While gamers get nostalgic every now and then for old-school video games on Atari, NES or Intellevision, some games with a retro feel are being made right in Philadelphia.
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This weekend marks the 10th annual TooManyGames, a convention dedicated to retro video games. The event features a marketplace where attendees can buy retro games and see video game tribute bands and comedians.
Several independent game developers based in Philadelphia will be showcasing their games at the Indie Game Showcase.Ghost Crab Games, co-owned by Chris Hoopes and Dustin Twilley, will be presenting its newest title, “Bungle!” The fast-paced reflex game will be available for download on iOS and Android phones and tablets on Friday.
While the company’s first game “Drive To Hell,” a top-down shooter for iOS and Android phones and tablets, had a simplistic design, Hoopes says “Bungle!” is far from that.
“Everything is super bright and vibrant,” Hoopes said. “It looks nothing like ‘Drive to Hell’ and I don’t expect our future games to look like ‘Drive to Hell’ at all.”
Hoopes said “Drive To Hell” was designed with pixel art as a stylistic choice and did not have any intention of having a retro feel.
“We didn’t really want the games to feel or play like retro but that’s what people think when they first see it, so it’s kind of what we’ve gone along with,” Hoopes said.
Hoopes says his favorite part about attending events like these is to get reaction from people who enjoyed his company’s games. He also detailed the difficulty with juggling a full-time job (he works as a web and mobile developer for e-City Interactive) along with the relief of finally releasing the game.
“There’s definitely a relief of getting it out there and hoping that people pay attention to it,” Hoopes said. “That’s hard to get people to notice you for the first time. You have to constantly sell yourself and promote yourself.”
Mike Williams of Wimbus Studios said he is looking forward to receiving feedback on his company’s first game, “The Island of Eternal Struggle,” set for a release on mobile gaming platforms as early as the end of 2015. The Wimbus game is an RPG inspired by “Chrono Trigger” and classic “Final Fantasy” titles.
“People love old school RPGs and you realize there’s not many of them like ours,” Williams said.
Paul Truitt, publicity and events director for TooManyGames, said it is"really awesome" to serve as an outlet for indie game developers.
"A lot of these indie developers make really small games that not everyone is going to hear about," Truitt said. "If you don't know about the developer, you may not hear about [its] games because there are so many games coming out all the time and some get lost in the shuffle, so it's really neat to be able to bring these games to people that might not get to see them."
Other Philadelphia-based independent game developers in attendance at the event include Cipher Prime, Dumb & Fat Games and Grimm Bros, LLC.
If you go
Friday, 3 to 10 p.m.
Saturday, Opens at 10 a.m.
Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Greater Philadelphia Expo Center
100 Station Ave., Oaks, PA 19456
For more information, visit www.toomanygames.com
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