Indie Spotlight: Rizzo Island

Rizzo Island is the latest in a long line of independently developed games that have designs on a Dreamcast release, and in this spotlight we thought it would be interesting to take a quick look at this promising title and the story behind it.

The creation of Dreameater Games, Rizzo Island is much more than just an indie game - it's also an homage of sorts to the titular character Rizzo, who is based on the musician and surfer Tom Rizzo. The game's director, David Crowshaw is actually Tom Rizzo's nephew, and when Tom passed away in 2016 David wanted to do something to honour his uncle's memory. Incorporating Tom Rizzo's music into the project means that as well as starring in Rizzo Island as the main protagonist, you'll also get the opportunity to listen to the music Tom recorded, which is actually pretty good and perfectly suits the style of game.


As you can probably tell from the screens and video, Rizzo Island is a third person platformer where you control Tom as he searches the various locations looking for CDs. Along the way, he must solve puzzles and fight enemies (using his surfboard as a weapon, naturally), unlock doors and keep his energy topped up by consuming cans of soda.
Rizzo Island is built using the Quake engine, and while it may look fairly basic it actually runs really well on the Dreamcast. Controls work well - you control Tom's movement with the analogue stick and triggers; while jumping and attacking enemies are handled by the face buttons.

The demo currently only features two smallish levels (and a psychedelic hub world), but they give a good idea of what to expect when the final game is released, and from what I've seen so far I can't help but be impressed. The Dreameater Games team is fairly small but from this short demo, they've done a pretty decent job using the Quake engine in a pretty unorthodox manner. That it runs so well on Dreamcast hardware is a bonus, and the lack of a second analogue stick on the Dreamcast controller doesn't detract from proceedings at all.
As stated, this is a very early demo and as such the final game could change considerably. However from the small glimpse at Rizzo Island I've had, I will be keeping an eye on this project. Well, an eye and an ear if more of Tom Rizzo's brand of chilled out surf rock music is included.

Find out more about Rizzo Island (and grab the demo) on Itch.io, check out the project's Patreon here, and follow Dreameater Games on Twitter for progress reports and updates on the game.

3 comments:

jon lee said...

Wow, nice little title, love the back story and the audio tracks, have followed on twitter and will be watching this one :)

Hasami Age said...

It has very interesting things.

Adam Burrell said...

The music is awesome! Gameplay looks like alot of fun as well. Cant wait for a finished version. I will definately be watching this one.