Feature

Indie Jones – Candy Box

Get it?! Because you’re Jonesing for your next Indie fix, and it’s also like Indiana Jones?
Alright, it’s not as good as Lumbarjack, but I’m sticking with it.

Here at Weekend Warriors we love indie games. We give them plenty of attention and personally my list of Most Wanted games is all indie and small studio work… But still, sometimes you come across indie games so niche and so strange they beggar description.

The first one of these we’re going to look at is Candy Box.

I’m not going to put any spoiler warnings in this post, so you should really go here, start playing Candy Box, and come back once the game starts to open up. You’ll know it when it happens.

Ok, so you’re back? Good. Now, we both know this could be the longest post in the history of the internet and you’d be happy to sit here and read it just so you had an excuse to be gaining delicious candies in your other tab, but I’ll try not to waffle on too much.

Like Frog Fractions before it, Candy Box starts off small, simple and contained before opening up into something bigger and weirder than you might have expected.

As the game opens, all you have is a number of candies that climbs continuously, and a button – Eat all the Candies. Resist hitting that button for a few seconds and a second button will appear – Throw 10 candies to on ground (why would you do that? You monster!). Wait longer still, and the Candy Merchant will appear… From here the game spirals out from this single climbing digit to encompass Candy Farming, and a confectionary-infused RPG featuring various locations, monsters, NPCs, weapon upgrades and the like. It’s delightful and bizarre, but what is really bizarre is that with nothing more than ASCII art and charmingly stilted English it is extremely compelling.

Candy Box latches into that same compulsive part of your brain as all those fucking Facebook games that you’ve blocked family members over, but without the annoying social aspects. It’s effortlessly social, if my twitter stream is anything to go by, making people want to tell their friends about it – not because the referral will earn them magic gamebux, but because the game is fantastically odd.

I’m not saying that it’s going to change the way you look at games, or that it’s going to replace Dota 2 as your nightly game of choice, but as a free experimentation in game design and a fun distraction you can keep open in a tab, it’s worth a look.

CANDIES!

And, if you want to hear about strange Indie Jones finds in a more timely manner, your best bet is freeindiegam.es (who’s url inspired me to get this fine Serbian domain right here…). They post numerous amazing and amazingly bizarre free indie games every day.

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