Monday 2 June 2008

10 Free Indie Games to play while not working on your Thesis

So I've recently been invited to a facebook group started by a few people in my honours cohort called "If you write my Thesis for me I'll..." and we're encouraged to finish the thought. =D

So, in a similar veign, I've spent the morning compiling a list of 10 or so Indie games that are both 1) Free and 2) Awesome to aid in the noble task of procrastination. Presented in alphabetical order.


“The Great B-Ball Purge of 2041, a day so painful to some that it is referred to only as the "B-Ballnacht". Thousands upon thousands of the world's greatest ballers were massacred in a swath of violence and sports bigotry as the game was outlawed worldwide. The reason: the Chaos Dunk, a jam so powerful its mere existence threatens the balance of chaos and order. Among the few ballers and fans that survived the basketball genocide was Charles Barkley, the man capable of performing the "Verboten Jam"...”


“Chalk is all about drawing your way to all the glory! Draw lines across shapes to destroy them, turn back bullets at enemies and thwart huge boss enemies by bouncing stuff back in their faces!”


Cloud, also known as That Cloud Game or Cloud: The Game, is a third-person computer puzzle game, designed by Jenova Chen, based on weather and atmospheric aesthetics. The game features distinctive hand-drawn art, as well as non-violent, whimsical play inspired by… Katamari Damacy.[1]


Cortex Command is a 2D base-building game in the vein of Worms, only with robots piloted by disembodied brains and giant bunked filled with electronic death. (Also the astoundingly detailed pixel-art and physics makes Worms look a bit like it was made during a sneezing accident.) It does require a bit of patience, however, so take your time and experiment.[2]


Imagine if the 90’s B-movie ‘Tremors’ became a videogame. This is it (with less Kevin Bacon).


“The basic premise is that you are a little dinosaur escaping extinction! Run, run (and jump), as fast as you can to the end of each level before the “Wall of Doom” engulfs you.[3]


“One of the major dilemmas with pushing games into more complex experiences and art forms is that games don’t necessarily generate any kind of consequences. Unlike shooting someone in real life, which leads to both moral and literal consequences, in a video game it either doesn’t matter or can be undone.[4]


“The game involves the player guiding a tiny, aquatic worm-like microorganism through various depths of the ocean to consume other organisms and to evolve their organism as the player advances… Within the first two weeks following its release, flOw attracted approximately 350,000 downloads.[5]


“Sweet Raptorchrist, it’s here... and it’s even more incredible than you imagined.[6]


“It’s half art experiment, half game and all punishment. It’s a sequence of aesthetically torturous and fairly difficult mini-games, peppered with clashing colours, unforgiving controls and angular, metallic noises aimed dead-centre at the brain’s pain-spots…That said, I haven’t in fact been beyond the opening GTA-esque bus-driving stage, in which the controls keep changing on me, cars spontaneously explode into rainbow-clouds of pain and collisions can randomly turn me around - and getting myself back on course is a horrific endeavour based mostly on chance. I actually hate it. I really, really hate it. But, at the same time, I also find it very funny.[7]


"Interactivity is one of the core features that differentiate games from passive media like film. In a game we play a role. Most of the time, the roles we play in games are roles of power. Space marine, world-class footballer or hero plumber. Isn't it about time we played the role of the weak, the misunderstood, even the evil? If videogames remain places where we only exercise juvenile power fantasies, I'm not sure there will be a meaningful future for the medium.[8]"

[1] Wikipedia contributors, "Cloud (video game)," Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, (accessed June 2, 2008).

[2] Jim Rossignol, ‘Cortex Command’, Rock Paper Shotgun,

[3] Derek Yu, ‘Dino Run’, The Independent Gaming Source,

[4] L.B. Jeffries, Execution – An Experiment in Game Consequences, Pop Matters,

[5] Wikipedia contributors, "FlOw," Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, (accessed June 2, 2008).

[6] Derek Yu, ‘Off-Road Velociraptor Safari’, The Independent Gaming Source,

[7] Alec Meer, ‘Randy Balma: Municipal Abortionist’, Rock Paper Shotgun,

[8] Ian Bogost, watercooler games, quoted on

1 comment:

Fashigady said...

Death Worm FTW! Though, whats with the aliens that show up?