I stumbled upon the movie when I was browsing Netflix for documentaries and the high rating struck my eye. I’ve been a fan of indie games, more specifically the ID@Xbox games, for a while. This love for unusual games is often ridiculed by JordanBelfort87 who just won’t stop accusing me of farming gamerscore with sometimes quick completion times. I really like indie games because they can be enjoyed in smaller chunks than big AAA releases and often have this charming DIY attitude. I judge them less harshly than the big releases because of the super small development team or sometimes even just one person doing all the work. I often find myself wondering how such a small team can achieve all of this work.
The movie is about the creation of Fez and Super Meat Boy and the success of Braid which was released before the aforementioned two. It shows the development hell Fez has been in and the insane amount of work it took to finish Super Meat Boy on time. Back in the 360 days I wasn’t too much into the XBLA stuff and I haven’t played any of them. And I still can recommend anyone interested in game development or DIY projects to watch this movie. It’s a great documentary about what it can take to achieve your goals and how self-destructive this work can become and the sacrifices the devs are willing to make.
After seeing what the devs have been through I did some googleing and was relieved to see that their games sold really well. Moreover I learned that the recently discussed release of The Witness is a game from Jonathan Blow who did Braid. The Binding of Issac sparked my interest because of its positive ratings and was made by Edmund McMillen who was working with Tommy Refenes on Super Meat Boy. The more you know!
After watching the movie I’ve been thinking about starting those games but I’m kinda worried about Super Meat Boy. I just suck at platformers really bad and Super Meat Boy seems really hard. Combine that with me getting frustrated easily that could prove a challenging one. As if I wouldn’t have enough frustration at the moment with some of the hard games included in Rare Replay.
I’d be happy to hear about your thoughts about the movie and the shown games in the comments. Did you play the XBLA titles back then? What would you recommend starting first? Did I miss any other gems from the XBLA times?