As a self-published author, I have an appreciation for indie’s or independent artists, creatives, and small companies that struggle to discover their voice, to find their audience, and to get their products noticed despite commercial brand’s abilities to mass produce, mass market, mass advertise.
I’d never thought much about independent game developers until I researched last week’s blog, ‘Xbox Live Gold, Xbox Game Pass: Worth It?’. The game I downloaded as a member of Xbox Live Gold was Race the Sun. Googling the game to create a short video to show gameplay, I learned was the product of Flippfly, a family company.
Then I watched The Game Awards and saw Celeste by Matt Makes Games win in the categories of Best Independent Game and Games for impact.
On the highway before dawn, a hitchhiker of an idea hurled itself toward my comatose brain; highlight independent developers as part of your blog, on a monthly basis. Oh, wow; I should really do that. So here it goes:
Independent Developers Monthly Spotlight: Flippfly
Race TheSun, an Xbox Live Gold game available for download 11/16 – 12/15, is the game I selected as part of my ‘Worth It?’ blog series. Right from the start, I noticed a Star Fox look and feel with geometric shapes rushing past my solar craft. Avoid blocks, cubes, and trees as you collect glowing blue triangles and brilliant yellow stars that fuel you forward.
Panels on the left and right tally up points, display levels, and reveal your cause of death. From time to time the unseen onlooker gives gifts to help you journey farther into dark regions away from the power giving Sun. Simple tasks such as avoid the blue tri’s grow harder as you level up. I’ve yet to accomplish 20 barrel rolls in a single flight.
The solar craft handles well. I’m better at directing it around mountains, tumbling blocks, and obstacles then I am at keeping my Forza Horizon’s car on the road. That’s not to say that the game is easy. Pushing my luck getting necessary items, or staying out of the shadows, or a split second decision ends in high impact crashes. Only twice did the flight end when I coasted to a stop, no power to propel me to a fueling star.
Would I play this game again? Would I suggest it to a friend? The answers are yes and yes.
A Flippfly tweet stated they’re seeking more Android beta testers for Race the Sun, dated December 5th. They also released Evergarden on Steam and the App store in August. Go take a look.
Flippfly is a company started by two brothers, Forest and Aaron Filippo.
Aaron worked seven years as a programmer in the AAA gaming industry. Now he does game designs and coding for his company.
Forest spent 15 years in graphic and web design before the start of Flippfly. Go visit the company’s website that he created: flippfly.com.
Allison Salmon spent 15 years as a senior software engineer for AAA gaming companies, and now she’s working for Flippfly.
Flippfly’s description of their game, Race the Sun:
You are a solar craft. The sun is your death timer. Hurtle towards the sunset at breakneck speed in a futile race against time. Delay the inevitable by catching energy boosts which reverse the setting sun – if only for a moment.
Race The Sun is inspired by arcade games of the past with a focus on high scores, short game sessions, and a sense of pure fun mingled with a nerve-wracking tension. The rules are simple: don’t crash, stay in the light, and don’t slow down!
Race the Sun is currently available forPS3/PS4/Vita as a cross buy on PSN, and on iOS (iPad and iPhone) it is also available on Steam, through the HumbleStore and at Flippfly.com
I wrote to Flippfly in hopes I could interview them. I’m so curious about what spurred them forward to carve out their own niche in gaming. If they agree to let me talk to them, I’ll highlight another one of their games.
The pictures are courtesy of Flippfly.