The Indie Café – Awesomenauts
Dig it, you crazy cats and kittens. You have entered the Indie Café, where the underground is given the floor. You know, sometimes we want to chill out with some games that give you something the Assassin’s Creeds and Uncharteds of the world can’t deliver. So we got your art house games, your retro titles, and anything else made without the man’s oversight available for you to groove and sink in to. So pull up a chair and lend your ear for these cool characters from the down low.
The MOBA (or Massively Online Battle Arena) genre is huge right now with titles like League of Legends, Super Monday Night Combat and the upcoming DOTA 2. With the genre blossoming over the past three years there’s plenty of room for a new title to introduce something new and interesting to the genre and it doesn’t matter whether or not the developer is a big time studio or a small independent one.
Awesomenauts from Ronimo Games is one such game. Instead of being just another MOBA, it actually incorporates sidescrolling action and platforming into its gameplay design. You pick one side of the team, either Red or Blue, and you battle it out on a battlefield trying to take over the other team’s home base. The game has a fun cartoon style with colorful personalities and each character has different special abilities that will be upgraded both in matches and from your overall playing. Abilities include shooting projectiles, teleporting and summoning a giant bull to push the enemies back. As you play, other little units will automatically spawn and attack various turret guns preventing you from attacking the home base. You and your teammates should help them in their endeavor but beware as the other team will try to do the same.
Because the game plays like a side scrolling platformer / action title similar to Mega Man, the game is actually played with a controller instead of mouse and keyboard like other MOBAs (although the PC version allows you to use a mouse and keyboard set up as well). As such, those who are intimidated by the level of involvement many MOBAs demand from them can play this, as it’s much more inviting and is presented in a familiar construct. The game’s main mode is multiplayer but there are practice solo battles to help you get started.
Developer Ronimo Games is a team originally responsible for the early free PC version of da Blob. Awesomenauts is their third game and was created by a team of a sprawling 12 people. The game was actually almost not released as their publisher dtp Entertainment was having financial problems but lucky for us, the game was released on the Xbox Live Arcade, PlayStation Network and PC via Steam and will cost you only $10. The PC version has extra characters to choose from so there’s extra incentive for that version.
Can you snap your fingers to celebrate the wonders of the little known game deserving of undercover fame? Step into the Indie Café every week to hear about the best of independently made video games. If you know about a groovy but little known title made by an independent studio, send me a tweet @Colorwind with the hash tag #IndieCafe and I’ll spread the wealth. Until next time, creep out like the shadow, cats and kittens.