Ready Player YEG: 6 Edmonton-Made Video Games
By Lauren McMullen
JumboJet Rex | Available for Windows and macOS | $10.99
Dinosaurs…space….need we say more? JumpJet Rex is a charming pixel-art platformer in which “you're a t-rex with rocket boots trying to save earth from an incoming asteroid” (quote source). If you ever played Flappy Bird or Fireboy and Watergirl when you were a kid, you might just fall in love with the simple joy of navigating through the sci-fi-themed levels.
Complete with an electric soundtrack and dinosaur customization, JumpJet Rex promises to be the perfect, lighted-hearted distraction for your study breaks.
JumpJet Rex was released in 2015 by TreeFortress Games, a small development studio in Edmonton that aims to “make cool games and have fun doing it” (quote source). You can find TreeFortress Games at TreeFortress.com.
Diamonds | Available for Windows and macOS | $5.69
Looking for something to play with friends? Get ready to test your reflexes as you battle enemies and collect diamonds for your team in maps that range from “Arctic mountains to celestial meteoroids” (quote source).
Diamonds is a 2019 twin-stick shooter game that supports up to four players for local or remote multiplayer. Team up with your friends to take on enemies, or duel with each other in competitive mode. (You can also play this game in single-player mode if you’re looking to unwind alone.)
This game was developed by Gerard Milmore, Andrew Jong, and Sean Chiem in Edmonton.
Projector Face | Available for Windows | $1.19
Perfect for fans of the Professor Layton series, Bendy and the Ink Machine, or Little Misfortune, Projector Face is a story-driven point-and-click adventure game complete with antique aesthetics that perfectly fit the voiceless nature of the protagonist.
You’ll be playing as Projector Face himself, a character who can communicate only through his actions and the films he can project onto the surfaces around him. In Projector Face, your goal is to solve puzzles and explore the world around you as you try to make friends and unravel the underlying stories of the characters.
This game can be completed in one sitting (~1 hour), and at only $1.19, it is an ideal option if you want to get lost in a truly endearing and artistic world.
Projector Face was published in 2016 by Edmonton’s Fluik Entertainment Inc. They have a large portfolio of mobile games you can explore on their website.
HoloBall | Available for Windows (VR only) | $14.99
If you’re a virtual reality (VR) fan, you are not going to want to miss this one. HoloBall’s retrowave graphics are reminiscent of old arcades, and its gameplay is “inspired by one of the most iconic games of all time” (quote source). Similar to racquetball, your goal is to use your VR paddle to volley the ball against a wall and score against your opponent. You can even use local or online multiplayer to test your skills against friends.
Released in 2016, HoloBall was developed by the same studio that released JumpJet Rex (see above). You can find TreeFortress Games at TreeFortress.com
Note: You must own a HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, or Valve Index headset to play this game.
The Low Road | Available for Windows and macOS | $17.49
In The Low Road, you’ll step into the world of corporate greed and exploitation as Noomi Kovacs, a rookie spy determined to expose industry evils and find success. Accompanied by rock-and-roll music and beautiful gouache-inspired visuals, this game takes place among the 1970s automobile industry. This dark comedy point-and-click adventure is escapism at its finest. The Low Road is filled with “intricate puzzles, branching moral dilemmas, and a quirky cast of memorable characters” (quote source).
The Low Road has received 4 awards and 2 nominations in a variety of categories, such as “Best Gaming Experience” (Digital Alberta Embers Awards, 2017) and “Best Character Design” (Game Design Awards, 2017) (quote source). This game was developed by XGen Studios, an independent development studio with over 14 titles. Learn more about XGen Studios at xgenstudios.com.
The Long Dark | Available for Windows and macOS | $39.99
The Long Dark was published in 2017 by Hinterland Studio Inc, a Vancouver-based studio, but it had significant contributions from Edmonton developers.
If you’re a fan of The Forest, Raft, or Subnautica, you might be interested in this locally-made survival video game. Set in a remote, frozen forest, it is up to you to find a way to survive among the cold and the wolves.