This is going to be a slightly different from normal. As opposed to reviewing specific games, I am more or less reviewing a game developer. The reason for this is the developer has yet to put out a game I do not like or cannot recommend for fans of really well designed indie games. So instead of reviewing each game in a separate article, I am going to review some of my favorites in a general article reiterating something I have said many times: you cannot go wrong with Radiangames.
Radiangames was formed by Luke Schneider in 2010. A veteran of the game industry, Luke decided to start his own indie company, and he started by programing in XNA for what at the time was known as the Xbox Live Community Games (now Indie Games). His first game, JoyJoy, received critical acclaim as a sharp looking and inovative twin stick shooter. When he released Crossfire, it became evident that Luke knew what he was doing, and Radiangames quickly made a name for itself on XBLIG.
After making several games via XNA, Luke shifted his focus to PC, Mac and iOS. His games have also been featured on a couple of the Royale Indie Bundles. Radiangames has become synonymous with good looking games that add new twists to the the standard game formulas, including twin stick shooter and puzzle games, and creates something truly unique. I have yet to play a game I have not liked, and that is something I can say about very few game designers.
Unique Gaming Experiences
So now that you know who Radiangames is, let start looking at the games. For the purpose of this review, I will be focusing on games available for PC and Mac:
- Inferno+ – Managing to blend twin stick shooter elements with the dungeon crawling experience of games like Gauntlet, Inferno+ is a new take on the traditional arcade style RPGs. You progress through more than 40 levels of increasingly difficult dungeon mazes, upgrading you “character” and the drones that follow you and help you deal with the enemies. On top of that, you can go back through the game again on a higher difficulty level with all of your upgrades in a New Game + format. If you are looking for a unique take on dungeon crawling, Inferno+ is for you.
Super Crossfire – Imagine something somewhat akin to Space Invaders, where you are controlling a ship firing up different enemies, though instead of advancing downward toward you, the various types are firing back at you, providing shields for other enemies or reflecting your shots. Now imagine you can transition your ship from the bottom of the screen to the top, allowing you to attack your foes from a completely different angle and avoid their shots. Add coop, and you have Super Crossfire. This game is unlike anything I have ever played with the exception of its predecessor, and it is one both old school gamers and current players will enjoy.
- Slydris – Slydris is a Tetris style “fill the line to remove it” puzzle game, but that is where the similarities with that classic end. You can slide both the blocks on the screen and the ones which are about to drop into it. The blocks are up to four spaces wide and are two different colors, giving you bonus points if you manage to match all of the same color to take out a line. As you progress through the levels, you will start to get lines added from the bottom, blocks which cannot be slid and magnetic blocks that will actually fall up. Trust me when I say you have not played a puzzle game quite like this.
- Fireball – Unlike most Radiangames, Fireball is not about shooting your enemies; it is about avoiding them. You control a fireball, and you must avoid your enemies similar to what you would do if you were trying to get the Pacifism achievement in Geometry Wars. The difference here is there are also mines on the field, and flying close to them will cause them to explode, taking out any enemies near them. The trick is to get as many enemies clumped together as possible to build your combos and survive each wave.
Great Games for a Great Price
So how much would you expect to pay for games of this high a quality? How about a maximum of $4.99? That’s right, the PC and Mac versions of these games are only $4.99, and they are even less expensive on iOS and only 80 points/$1 on XBLIG. While the $4.99 price for PC and Mac may seem a bit steep, these tend to be the definitive versions of the game, and as mentioned earlier, Radiangames’s Desura distribution has lead to them being featured in at least a couple of the Royale Indie Bundles.
If you are looking for some great bite sized games to play with just about infinite replayability, you cannot go wrong with any of the games offered by Radiangames. For providing unique indie game experiences at low prices, Radiangames gets a 10 out of 10.
Okay, I promise I will not make a habit of reviewing game developers instead of reviewing games, but it just seemed the best way to handle these games.
For more info on Radiangames and the games Luke makes, check out Radiangames.com.