Latest Publications

New release: Siralim

Word reaches me that there’s a new creature-summoning dungeon delver out, one with the procedurally generated dungeons one might come to expect from a roguelike. That game is Siralim.

Created by the decidedly hard-to-spell-or-pronounce Thylacine Studios, Siralim reportedly includes “over 300 different creatures to summon, each with their own unique abilities that drastically change the way the game is played.”

The developers have posted no narrative premise anywhere, but they describe the game like so:

Summon hundreds of powerful creatures to fight by your side in Siralim, a turn-based RPG with roguelike elements. In Siralim, everything is randomly generated – including the dungeons, the quests, and the items.

So, not too much we didn’t already know. The trailer should prove somewhat more enlightening:

Looking at that video, it’s hard not to compare Siralim to Deity Quest, at least in regard to its overall concept and presentation. However, the combat system clearly differs pretty substantially, being more akin to something like Dragon Quest. The ability to summon creatures at will rather than capturing them is a notable point of differentiation as well.

Reportedly, Siralim allows you to craft equipment for your creatures, and gives you more than 100 spells you can cast to support your creatures in combat. The game also offers castle management–you can garrison, upgrade, and bolster your castle’s economy by finding treasure, according to the developers.

Siralim is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux for $9.99 on Steam and on itch.iO; you can also get it for Android, iOS, and Windows Phones for roughly half that amount (iOS unlocks the full game with a $4.99 in-app-purchase, Windows Phone requires the $4.99 up-front, and from what I can tell, Android appears to work the same as iOS in this regard).

A free demo for Windows, Mac, and Linux is available as well.

New release: Your Story

Your Story
Joshua Auriemma writes in to announce the release of Your Story, an RPG / interactive fiction hybrid, which he describes as “a Choose Your Own Adventure where choices are modified by randomly generated (but upgradeable) stats. It’s not quite interactive fiction (I don’t think) and not quite an RPG (no inventory, for instance). But I think it’s something squarely in-between.”

Inspired by Robert Frost’s famous poem “The Road Not Taken,” Your Story

literally begins at the decision point between divergent paths in the woods. Depending on random chance and the player’s decisions, just about every player will experience a different piece of the story on his or her first playthrough.

Your character’s statistics are assigned at random at the start of the game, and are presented as descriptions of your character rather than as numbers visible up-front. Auriemma states that the game contains the equivalent of 80 pages of printed text, and that “scenes change quite a bit depending on the player — not just in terms of choices available, but in terms of what the player learns about the story.”

Your Story is available for $1.99 on the Apple app store; iOS only.

New release: Antharion

Ari Rae-Silver writes in to announce the release of Antharion, a new isometric wRPG from Florida indie studio Orphic Software.

There’s no official narrative summary anywhere, but I can tell you based on the time I’ve spent with it so far that the setup is pretty familiar to anyone who’s played wRPGs: the world is at peace, suddenly an evil threatens it, and you and your ragtag team escape prison and are tasked with finding and stopping the source of the evil.

Here’s a release trailer which shows a bit of what the game plays like:

And here’s the feature list:

  • Create and fully customize your party of four, choosing from 7 races, 9 classes and 15 skills.
  • Journey through five huge provinces, each with its own environment, history and culture.
  • Experience an open-ended epic storyline where you determine what happens.
  • Turn-based tactical combat makes dungeon crawling endlessly satisfying.
  • Explore a huge living-breathing and fully interactive open world.
  • Make choices that matter and affect the world around you.
  • Enjoy total freedom to play however you want.
  • Create and customize a party of four.

As implied above, I’ve had my hands on a build of the game for a couple of weeks now, and I intend to do an Checks Out of it very soon. (I’d have had one up already, frankly, but for the fact that FRAPS decided not to record it the last time I tried.)

Until I get that up, however, you can always try the game for yourself! Antharion is now available for $17.99 on Steam, The Humble Store, and direct from the developer; Windows and Mac.

Back to Back: Indie RPGS to fund

It’s that special time again–that time when we whip out our Internet Binoculars and peer off into the horizon at the games that might yet come to be, if only they can get the monetary support they need.

Of those we examined last time, The Bard’s Tale IV, Regalia, and We Happy Few suceeded; less happily, the Auro Quest Expansion failed, as did Crisential and Reikon Dungeon.

So–what’s new?


Crashlands announced

Greetings, indie RPG fans! I’m a bit behind, but slowly clawing my way through the eternal backlog. Today’s post comes courtesy of Sam Coster from Butterscotch Shenanigans (creators of Quadropus Rampage, previously covered here), who has written in to announce Crashlands, an action RPG with crafting, base-building, creature-taming, and big procedurally generated biomes to explore.

The narrative premise is pretty silly:

Play as Flux Dabes, a galactic delivery truck driver whose latest shipment gets interrupted by a megalomaniacal alien named “Q” who tears her ship to pieces looking for useful tech. Crashlanded on Woanope, you must fight, tame, craft, quest, bossfight, and adventure your way to domination of all the things so that you and JuiceBox, your trusty sidekick/supervisor/robotic cargo palette, can send a message to the Bureau of Shipping and get those damn packages delivered!

The trailer should give you the idea of what you’re in for:

It bears mentioning that there’s a human interest angle to this game–Butterscotch Shenanigans evidently dumped whatever it was they were working on in October 2013 when Sam Coster was diagnosed with cancer. The team began working on Crashlands instead, because–in Coster’s words–he was “[i]n need of something more meaningful to work on through all the chemo and tests.” If nothing else, it’s served to help him keep going through some serious adversity, though one must hope that the game will prove excellent in its own right as well.

Crashlands’s planned feature list reads as follows:

  1. Infinite, self-managing inventory

  2. Pleasurable base-building that feels like painting

  3. A huge, absurd narrative that gives purpose and direction to crafting

  4. Diverse combat with tameable creatures

  5. Platform-agnosticism: The game plays just as well on mobile and desktop (Steam, Android, iOS), will launch at the same time on all of them, and has cross-platform save syncing

Crashlands is planned for release in the fall; Windows and Mac ($15), iOS and Android ($5).

New release: The Amber Throne

The Amber Throne
Word reaches me that there’s a new indie jRPG on the scene called The Amber Throne. Created by three-person team The Biggest Missile Ever, The Amber Throne features lovely painted visuals that almost completely disguise its RPG Maker origins.

The premise:

After awakening from her coffin, Arra recalls little but the last words spoken by her father, “Destroy the Amber Throne.” Looking into the sky, she finds that what was once his magnificent castle is now floating in the sky, far above the world below. Arra must find a way to reach the castle before the other forces catch wind of it, to both prevent them from reaching the Throne within and to bring an end to it.

You can scope out the game’s visual style in this trailer:

The game features five party members, a crafting system, enemies with multiple stances and behaviors, and a length of 12-15 hours. This gif seems to show initiative-based, turn-based combat, so you can go in expecting that as well.

The Amber Throne is $14.99 on Steam. Windows only. The developers have provided a very short demo, which you can nab here. Checks Out The Enchanted Cave 2

As sometimes happens here on, indie developer Dustin Auxier was good enough to provide me with a build of his recently released game, The Enchanted Cave 2. I’ve played it a bit here and there over the past few weeks, then finally sat down to play and record the results. You can follow along right here:

So, what’d I think?


New release: Legends of Eisenwald

Legends of Eisenwald
Word has it that Legends of Eisenwald, a strategy RPG in the same general oeuvre as the King’s Bounty series, has now been released into the world. Developed by Belarusian indie studio Aterdux Entertainment, Legends of Eisenwald has you recruit soldiers, collect gold, garrison castles, and go on adventures that involve frequent, small-scale, turn-based fights on hex-filled battlefields.

The premise:

The mysterious lands of old Germany are waiting for you – it’s a land where the superstitions of the time have come to life. This isn’t a fantasy game. There are no elves or dragons here. There are only people – and their passions, sins and fears that often take a tangible form. Which path will you choose? Live according to your conscience? Or live by power and might? Or will you live by justice? And what is your justice, really?

Okay. There may not be elves or dragons, but there definitely appear to be some ghosts in the screenshots. Anyway, here’s the game’s release trailer:

I spent some time with a beta version of the game two and a half years ago, and I’m looking forward to checking out the final release to see how things have improved. You needn’t wait for me, though–you can get Legends of Eisenwald right now on Steam or direct from developer via the Humble widget. Windows only; full price is $29.99, though there is the customary launch discount in effect to lessen that a bit.

New release: Ruin

I have received word of a new jRPG released on June 1 called Ruin. Created by MOCBJ Software in OHRRPGCE, Ruin is apparently based on a 2008 title called The Omega.

The premise:

An earthquake of cataclysmic proportions annihilates the world and ushers in what many address as “the end of times”. But is it really the end?

Join one man as he travels the world in order to unravel the cause behind these catastrophic events.

Here’s a trailer:

And here’s a list of features:

–​ A refreshing take on the random battle system that rewards grinding, or allows you to skip fighting altogether.
–​ 16 side quests, many of which utilize a “fast travel” turn-in system.
–​ Over 40 in-game achievements.
–​ A tiered crafting system with over 100 craftable items.
–​ Semi-randomized loot system that encourages exploration. Over 500 lootable objects.
– Two difficulty levels.

Ruin is free; you can nab it here for Windows (or in a zip version), Mac, or Linux. It also comes in an Android flavor, which you can grab on Google Play or Amazon.

Back to Back: Indie RPGS to fund

Today is the day we boot up the old “Back to Back” program here at and see what it spits out! Here we go:

Status: updating records on recently completed crowdfunding projects.

Succeeded: Umbra.

Failed: Planet Centauri, Spinal Blast, Venture Forth.

Status: observing ongoing crowdfunding projects.

Click to continue…