As the recent success of "Minecraft" demonstrates, the indie game scene is thriving while industry giants from the AAA studio THQ to the social game titan Zynga struggle to make ends meet. While independant developers are noted for their ability to temper production costs by keeping smaller staffs and more managable overhead for their productions, many indie games are also critically lauded for offering players more relatably human stories than the next "Call of Duty."
Chief among this new bevy of games is "Papo & Yo," a game debuting on the Playstation 3 Network next week. The game is described as a "puzzle-platformer" in the press material, but what's truly unique about the game is its story. The game follows a young boy named Quico who travels with a large pink monster named, well, Monster. Occassionally, Monster will eat green frogs and fly into fits of rage which Quico must learn how to contain or simply escape from.
Vander Caballero, the game's creator, has spoken in candid interviews about being inspired to make the game after growing up with an alcoholic and abusive father. When I spoke with him about the game in May, he told me that he hoped "Papo & Yo" would help influence a new generation of game developers to tell more personal stories through their work. "What happens in AAA games is they take a situation and they take a snapshot, you don't actually feel the moment," he said. "When I make a game now, I know I need to give the context of a situation."
"Papo & Yo" will be released on the Playstation Store on August 14. Watch the trailer below.