Another month passes by with us all largely working from home, and as such, that means we at Steel Media got to once again head online in order to host another digital edition of our global indie pitching competition, The Big Indie Pitch.
As has been the case since March this year, we may not be able to travel, but despite this our digital pitches have only gone from strength to strength, allowing us to host an ever-increasing range of diverse brand new gaming experiences from some of the world's most exciting indie developers.
Most recently that meant hosting our second ever standalone Digital Big Indie Pitch, brought to you in part thanks to our season sponsors Kwalee. Our standalone pitches were created with the sole aim offering even more opportunities for developers from around the world to showcase their games to expert judges, something which is even more important in the current climate.
Even better though, it meant we were able to celebrate the pitch despite not being able to return to Hong Kong again this year for Pocket Gamer Connects.
Once again, the demand was high for these pitches, with this meaning that the quality was as strong as ever. All in all, this meant that we were still able to bring together 15 of the most exciting mobile developers from all over the world to showcase their latest works to some of our most established judges and journalists.
Given the amazing talent, we had just waiting for an opportunity, this meant that there was lots of feedback from the judges, and an equal amount of positivity in the voting. Nevertheless, three games rose to the top (alongside one honourable mention), with Hong Kong-based Minidragon's Fatal Funnel being crowned the unanimous winner.
For those not in the know, The Big Indie Pitch is a regular event run by the makers of PocketGamer.biz. It gives indie developers the chance to pitch their games to industry experts and journalists in a speed-dating-style format. Teams get the opportunity to get valuable feedback on their games, as well as win great prizes such as promotional packages and, more importantly, the coveted Big Indie Pitch bat.
Of course, Fatal Funnel, as you already know, was the winner, but we always award prizes for the top three. So read on to not only find out more about Fatal Funnel but also our runners-up and honourable mention from The Digital Big Indie Pitch #2 sponsored by our season sponsors, Kwalee.
1st Place - Fatal Funnel by Minidragon
Fatal Funnel is a puzzle action game that brings the stealth genre to mobile in a brand new and accessible manner. Within the game, players take control of an elite SWAT team and they endeavour to solve tactical situations and events through the use of a unique and innovative drawing mechanic. This gameplay mechanic allows players to connect each of their team members in order to coordinate their attack, and in turn hopefully resolve the situation effectively.
Alongside this, the game utilises a clean and easy to understand aesthetic, alongside a lot of planned content in order to keep gamers playing for a long long time. All in all the game unanimously impressed the judges, and in turn meant that Minidragon took the Big Indie Pitch crown for the second time, nearly one year exactly to the day where they first won it at Pocket Gamer Connects Hong Kong 2019.
2nd Place - Dungeon Warriors! by Minidragon
Not content with taking first place, another development project within the small indie studio was pitched as a part of the Big Indie Pitch. That game was Dungeon Warriors!, and it impressed just as much as Fatal Funnel, despite being a very different game. You see, unlike the slow methodical gameplay of Fatal Funnel, Dungeon Warriors is an all-out hack-and-slash game designed from the ground up for mobile platforms.
Utilising a simple one-touch control scheme alongside portrait mode gameplay, Dungeon Warriors! allows players to blend stylish combo attacks and magic spells in order to take down ever-increasing large groups of enemies. That's not all though, as the game additionally features various different hero types to choose from in addition to physics-based combat interactions that allows players to incorporate high levels of individuality to their combat style.
3rd Place - Gogogo! by Robert Thomson
Gogogo! is a 3 to 16 player party game for iOS and Android, one that is filled to the max with unique and different challenges. Played on one mobile phone and with no need for an internet connection, the game takes some inspiration from perfect party titles and brings to mind games such as WarioWare Smooth Moves.
Of course, much like the aforementioned game, this means chaos is ahead. As such, players can be expected to complete challenges such as striking a pose, recreating a referee's drawing from memory, or even giving an impression of random noises, such as a "flirting pigeon". This really is a game for fans of crazy chaotic fun.
Honourable Mention - BEJJ: Jiu-Jitsu Game by Smash Mountain Studio
Not satisfied with awarding a top three, the judges really felt it was necessary to give BEJJ: Jiu-Jitsu Game an honourable mention thanks to its dedicated and focused approach to game development. What was this focus exactly you ask? Well BEJJ has been created with one key goal in mind, to create a game to meet the demand for a dedicated Jiu-Jitsu title.
Now of course, at first reading, you might be expecting to find that Smash Mountain Studio has created a PvP fighting game. However, if you thought this, then you'd be wrong, as BEJJ is a unique RPG-strategy-tactical-card-fighting, one that has been designed to appeal both to those who live a Jiu-Jitsu life, and also those new to this unique martial art. As such, with both midcore and hardcore players alike being appealed to, alongside online play, Smash Mountain Studio hopes to utilise their one of a kind gameplay, alongside the global love of this fighting style in order to create a new type of hit game.
Want to show off your exciting new game? We host Big Indie Pitch events throughout the year, so be sure to keep an eye on our events page for an event near you.
Upcoming BIPs include:
- September 15th - The Big Indie Pitch (PC+Console Edition) at Pocket Gamer Connects Helsinki Digital 2020
- September 16th - The Big Indie Pitch (Mobile Edition) at Pocket Gamer Connects Helsinki Digital 2020