Brandon Boyer

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Every month, as part of the regular monthly meetings of the Austin, TX independent game community JUEGOS RANCHEROS, we do a very casual & chatty rundown of the ten or so games from the previous month — both local and global, and both indie and occasionally a bit-bigger-budget — for the audience, to give people — especially those curious onlookers from outside the indie community itself — a look at what they may have missed.

In keeping with the tongue-in-tobacco-packed-cheek tone, we call these run-downs A Fistful of Indies, which are be presented here on Venus Patrol for your reference, each fully-annotated, -linked, and off-the-cuff blurbed, in addition to their home on the JUEGOS RANCHEROS site.


Developer: Re-Logic | Platform: PC | Get it: Steam

“The easiest way to describe this game is it’s MINECRAFT in 2D — a multiplayer game with procedurally generated worlds so that it’s a new experience every time you play. The team that created MINECRAFT itself has recently been hopelessly addicted to this game, which should tell you everything you need to know.”


Developer: Colaboratory | Platform: iPad | Get it: AppStore

“…puts you and your friends directly in the cockpit of a giant robot, which you can see in the bottom middle there, where each player works to control a separate weapon against oncoming waves of enemies. ”

Frozen Synapse

Developer: Mode 7 Games | Platform: PC, Mac | Get it: Direct from Mode 7, with free Steam key

“… a somewhat traditional turn-based tactile strategy game, but done super-smartly and, as you can see from this screenshot here, with a ton of style and visual flair.”


Developer: Robotalism | Platform: iPhone | Get it: AppStore

“…destroy falling Tetris blocks by tracing the shapes they make with your finger, which shoots your own blocks upward to destroy them before they reach the bottom of the screen — a surprisingly fresh take on a falling-block puzzle. ”


Developer: Recluse Industries | Platform: iPhone | Get it: AppStore

“…super stylish action puzzle game where the player jumps from surface to surface to work your way up to the CCTV camera there, all while avoiding its gaze, as it circles around to spot you, the intruder.”

Balloon Diaspora

Developer: Cardboard Computer | Platform: PC, Mac | Get it: Direct from Cardboard Computer

“… with an original soundtrack by Finland’s Oliver Blank, it’s a free point and click adventure game that’s one of the most beautiful worlds I’ve visited in quite a while, where you travel in a hot air balloon and explore the inhabitants and the culture of this abstract world.”

Jesus Vs. Dinosaurs

Developer: Grapefrukt & Kloonigames | Platform: Web | Get it: Online

“…a game that came out of the recent Global Game Jam by the people behind games like CRAYON PHYSICS & GLORG, It’s a two player game that pits Darwin versus God, as you can see here, where the object is to assemble little autonomous vehicles out of Tetris blocks and try to race them through your opponent’s side of the screen. It’s another free download, and has been getting a lot of play at parties around the Nordic region.”


Developer: Erik Svedäng | Platform: iPad | Get it: AppStore

“… another multiplayer iPad game, this time an electro-clash remix of an earlier iPad game from the same developer called SHOT SHOT SHOOT. The point here is to destroy your opponent’s bases, sort of Missile Command style, while also destroying the missiles they’re firing in at you, and has turned into a cult-classic versus game amongst a lot of indie developers. ”

Sissy’s Magical Ponycorn Adventure

Developer: Untold Entertainment | Platform: Web | Get it: Online

“If it’s not immediately obvious, Ponycorn is a point and click adventure game drawn and designed and voiced by a five year old girl named Cassie Creighton, along with her dad Ryan, from Toronto indie studio Untold Entertainment. Your object here is to rescue all of the ponycorns, who are all being held captive by tigers and giant lemons. This game’s gone super viral over the past week or so, so there’s a good chance you already saw this one when your mom posted it to Facebook.”

Bumpy Road

Developer: Simogo | Platform: iPhone/iPad | Get it: AppStore

“On the surface it’s a little minigame where you control your car by swiping your finger across the toy-piano ground to make hills for the car to slide down, or to make it jump up to higher platforms, but underneath it all you eventually learn that there’s actually a really touching story of who the people in the car are and the reason for their journey.”