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June 17, 2016

IndieCade is the best it’s ever been at E3 2016

by John_A

IndieCade’s E3 installment always features a lineup of nifty games from independent developers, but this year it went above and beyond. Multiple games on display used physical objects or installation pieces as part of their gameplay, making the entire IndieCade booth a hub of joyful activity.

One game, Magic Dance Mirror from developer Kinetic Magic, used a Kinect motion sensor to track people’s movement and transfer it to a giant screen filled with neon starbursts that reacted to players’ dancing. The game did a great job of tracking my (admittedly terrible) dance moves and even allowed me to draw shapes like hearts and circles in twinkling lights. Magic Dance Mirror was built for clubs or large parties, not necessarily an everyday living room.

My favorite game of IndieCade’s E3 space was Beautiful Corner from Individual. It was indeed both beautiful and in a corner — the entire game played out in a small, fantastical bedroom complete with fox-and-rabbit wallpaper, cute creatures under the bed, a key in a wall and a trunk filled with magic water. It’s a coming-of-age story that plays out through letters, trinkets and postcards from the player’s imaginary friend. It’s moving and sweet, while commenting on the realities of growing up (or not). Lead designer and artist Martzi Campos created the game as her Master’s thesis in the University of Southern California’s Interactive Media and Design track. I’d give her that degree, for what it’s worth.

Check out these two games and a few more interactive exhibits, including a cuddly octopus and a full-body meditative VR experience, in our video direct from the E3 show floor.

Follow all the news from E3 2016 here!

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