Published on February 3rd, 2015 | by Craig Forshey5
Danish GameDev Students Release 6 Completely Free Games
With mobile gaming becoming more and more mainstream everyday universities have started to include Android as a target platform in their game development programs and in the case of one network of schools in Denmark Android has even become their default development platform altogether. Known as The National Academy Of Digital Interactive Entertainment this organization brings together students from schools all over Denmark in order to host a series of game development courses every year called DADIU that’s designed to simulate working in a fully fledged game company by dividing participating students into six teams so that each team has all the necessary positions filled such as level designers, character artists, programmers and so on with their ultimate goal at the end of the semester to have released a AAA video game on par with or exceeding industry standards.
What’s really neat about this program is that it’s essentially a semester long game jam that gives students valuable real world experience about what it’s like to work on a fully staffed development team. Each year the students work with different themes and this year their objectives were to create two highly polished games hailing from both the casual and free to play genres. The difference being that free to play here means a typical full singleplayer game supported through in app purchases whereas the casual game would be a shorter initial test exercise meant to be more of the pick up and play variety. At the end of the semester the six teams spend six weeks crafting their own dream game in DADIU’s Graduation Game Production event wherein the students can reach out to teachers and local experts in the game industry for advice but are largely left to their own devices in terms of the final product.
Interestingly, even though these are technically designed as free to play games all the in app purchases are just for show and actually don’t cost anything so players get to experience all of these games for completely free. Since there were six student dev teams competing in the Graduation Game Production this year that means we have 6 awesome new free games to play so without further ado let’s take a look at them.
This addicting remix of god games like Populous puts players in the shoes of a divine entity as they reshape the world using their heavenly clouds in order to grow their small band of followers into a thriving civilization. It wont be easy though as many obstacles lie in your path, but a smart deity knows how to plan ahead which means players will need to think strategically about the way they mold the landscape in order to survive. The Little Big Adventure esque polygonal graphics style is absolutely charming and helps to give Clouds a vibrant visual presentation.
A fantastic looking 3D arcade game reminiscent of Pac-Man crossed with Spyro The Dragon, Dragon Journey provides simple but solid fun. As a giant cel-shaded dragon it’s up to players to rescue a bunch of cute little critters who have been kidnapped by dastardly monsters by smashing open crystals and unleashing powerful dragon attacks. As a pick up and play action arcade game Dragon Journey works very well.
A hilarious new puzzle platformer about stealthy goblins, Greedy Grablins feels like a well executed mashup of Metal Gear Solid and The Lost Vikings. Players command a cadre of uniquely empowered goblins as they sneak about the villages of humans in search of precious gold. Just don’t get caught though, goblins aren’t very good fighters after all!
RPG tactics and hilarity collide in this new 3D strategy game about some foolhardy vikings going around picking fights wherever they can. Players will put together their own private army of heroes pulled from 5 unique classes and are able to level up each character as they win successive battles. In addition to a meaty single player campaign there’s even support for local multiplayer on the same device for the occasional hotseat grudge match.
Combining endless running with arcade puzzlers is SCOUTS!, a fantastic looking new sidescroller about three happy go lucky campers surviving all the perils of the wilderness. In addition to dodging and ducking deadly obstacles in their path players will also need to actively switch between three different protagonists as they each have special abilities needed to bypass certain traps. And while all that’s going on players will also have the ability to spot rare animals to get some sweet power ups and unlock nifty looking merit badges.
You’ve never seen a game about herding sheep as epic as Wonder Wool, and when I say epic I literally mean epic as players take on the role of the god of sheep as they strive to guide their herd out of the way of a voracious killer cyclops. Fortunately in this quirky physics heavy action game players can summon the powers of the gods to help even the odds so when that dastardly cyclops goes to eat another one of your sheep he’ll get a nasty shock from Zeus himself for being such a jerk. Between its charming cartoonish appearance, intuitive gameplay mechanics, and well designed sense of progression Wonder Wool has a lot to offer aside from, you know, being completely free and all.