For the 4th year running, Southeast Asia’s premier game convention, GameStart Asia 2017, was held in Singapore on the 14th and 15th of October. Besides being a place where both aspiring new game developers and veteran powerhouses show-off their latest game builds, GameStart Asia is also host to a number of game tournaments. One such example would be the South East Asia Major (SEAM), the biggest Fighting Game tournament in Southeast Asia.
For the video game geeks, GameStart Asia has even prepared a Doujin Market for you to find fellow fan creations of your favourite game characters. Did we also mention that GameStart Asia is a very cosplay friendly event? By “very”, not only is there a cosplay competition where cosplayers can win attractive prizes, but cosplayers get FREE entry into the event!
Last but definitely not least, GameStart Asia has finally birthed a GameStart TableTop gaming area, with its very own Tabletop tournaments! From Russian Roulette to Exploding Kittens and even Singapore’s very own (version of Cards Against Humanity) Limpeh Says. If you are only there to find out more or to try out table top games, there’s a Rental/Play area specifically for that, free from all the excessive table top geeky-ness… which may eventually corrupt you as well. *cue evil laughter*
Now, let us introduce some of the notable titles that were displayed at this year’s event.
Cat Quest has already been released on three platforms, namely, Steam, iOS and Google Play Store. Developed by The Gentlebros, who was also responsible for the popular Slashy Hero, Cat Quest features a cat-tion packed packed cat-venture presented in the nostalgic meow-ner of expurring an overworld map. Meow. Utilise cat magic in real time combat to conquer dungeons and complete quests, collecting various equipment while exploring the continent of Felingard. If you are a fan of the old school action-adventure genre (or simply cats), do check this game out!
Hailing all the way from Indonesia, the developers of Fallen Legion (Indonesia’s Game of the Year 2017), Mintsphere was also present at GameStart Asia! This time, with a new project waiting to showcase to the world, Grimmtale – Red Riding Hood. In essence, Grimmtale is an action-based dungeon crawler with a card-weapon system. Players first navigate through the procedural generated dark woods in a hex grid map in a turned based system. Upon confronting the big bad wolves, players then enter a real-time side-scrolling action combat, with a unique card-weapon mechanic! While Mintsphere currently does not have an official webpage or trailer for Grimmtale yet, you may check out an interview with the Lead Director over here to learn more about the game. Grimmtale – Red Riding Hood is expected to hit the stores in the first quarter of 2018 as the developers perform the final finishing touches to the game.
And finally, by far the most intriguing game that was on display this year was Songbird Symphony by Joysteak Studios (yet another up and coming Indie studio). The concept of the game, along with the cutesy pixel visuals and writing has also earned this game the Judge’s Choice Award in GameStart Indie Awards! As the name implies, you take on the role of a cute little bird named “Birb”, and embark on a musical journey through the melodious forest and learn its various languages. We cannot help but feel that the devs are trying to convey the idea that the forest contains many hidden melodies for you to discover, if only you would take a step away from the city, and into the greenery. What’s more, the devs from Joysteak Studios have already prepared a demo for you to try! Check it out here! If the short snippet of this game is able to pique your interest, you can even consider supporting the devs on their patreon as well.
From this little snapshot of GameStart Asia 2017, the video game industry in Southeast Asia seems to be pretty promising. New games from a variety of genres, each with a fresh perspective and different set of minds behind the respective developments, surely this would bring about much needed diversity and inspire more creativity in the video game industry. If you are a game junkie like us happen to visit Singapore sometime in the future, do consider dropping by during GameStart Asia 2018! Alternatively, you might want to consider adding China Digital Entertainment Expo & Conference 2018 (held annually in Shanghai) or the upcoming Taipei Game Show 2018 (26th – 29th January)!