Brandon Boyer

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After a long weekend spent with a couple hundred games, the first selection of games coming to this year’s Fantastic Arcade — the indie game spinoff of the Alamo Drafthouse’s Fantastic Fest film festival — have just been announced, as curated by the founding members of Austin indie collective JUEGOS RANCHEROS (aka Wiley Wiggins, Adam Saltsman & I).

The full list of spotlight games, each of which will be given the full arcade-cabinet overhaul and put on public display for all Fantastic Fest & Arcade-goers from September 19th to 22nd, follows below — with some new, unseen video of some of this year’s entries, as well as games that will be part of Arcade’s daily tournaments.

At top, Beau Blyth’s super highly anticipated Samurai Gunn, which first blipped on radars when we debuted it for tournament play at least year’s Fantastic Arcade, will be returning for open play during the entire week.


Vlambeer’s post-apocalyptic action roguelike Wasteland Kings, first developed & released as part of the Mojang-related 3-day game jam, will also be popping up at this year’s Arcade…

Longtime Fantastic Arcade fave & Murder Dog creator TheCatamites will be back with his collaborative dungeon crawler Goblet Grotto, created with K Chastain & NEW VADERS.

Like Samurai Gunn, Panoramical was an unexpected & delightful surprise to come out of last year’s Fantastic Arcade, and this time it’ll be back in an official capacity with a full slider & knob-twiddle controlled cabinet.

Still mostly off the public radar (for another four weeks or so) but possibly one of the most anticipated games of a number of indie developers I know, Stephen Ascher’s Q.E.D. is an absurdist breakdancing game years in development, but due to make its public premiere in freshly overhauled style.


Breakfall’s Starwhal adds more multiplayer energy to the Fantastic Arcade lineup with its super physical play in which each narwhal tries to pierce the other’s heart.

That multiplayer lineup goes even further with Matt Thorson’s recent high profile indie success Towerfall


As well as No Brakes Valet, from Enviro-Bear creator Justin Smith — a game that was shown off all the way back at the very first Fantastic Arcade, finally found an audience with its Ouya debut, and will be coming back this year in a new 4-player form.

On top of the cabinets, Fantastic Arcade will also see a large number of additional games announced in coming weeks, as well as daily tournaments, which this year will be headlined by Samurai Gunn & Towerfall, as well as VideoHeroeS (above), an upcoming VHS-collector’s dreamgame by MirrorMoon creators Santa Ragione…

Poocuzzi, a four-player butt-controlled game from Nidhogg creator Messhof & Chris Osborn, and Pistol Cat, a mysterious new multiplayer game from Kachina creator & former Unfinished Swan designer Ben Esposito.

Find out more details about this year’s Fantastic Arcade & its lineup at its official site, and stay tuned for more about its extended lineup over the next couple weeks.