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Upcoming Dreamcast Indie releases - 2021 and beyond!


We're quite lucky to be Dreamcast fans at the moment, living through what feels like a renaissance for the machine -  with Sega giving a little bit of merchandise love to the machine, a proliferation of hardware mods that allow access to older titles, full HDMI support, new controllers, a growing collection of Dreamcast related literature, ports of Atomiswave arcade titles, and an ever impressive indie library. There's a remarkable amount of activity around a machine which is approaching 23 years of age, and we here at the Junkyard are embracing it with a smile on our face, a VMU in our pocket, and a dwindling bank account as we welcome the second coming of our digital dream box. And long may it continue!

The year 2021 is set to be the biggest - by some way - year for indie releases in the systems history though. There is a quite staggering number of titles on their way - more than 30 by some counts - and a fairly large number of those will be in our hands sooner, rather than later. Whilst most of you will have already backed the titles you've seen, there's a good chance some may have slipped you by, or maybe you've just not been aware of the tremendous indie barrage about to assault the console. Fear not, for we're hopefully going to set that straight today.

Before we list all the indie titles on their way, we want to make a couple of observations. This list only includes titles that are set for a physical release. That will preclude some of the homebrew software being developed, and of course won't touch on any ports being developed. We're also not going to include anything which is *only* based on rumours. As you can imagine, we have heard several of these! Furthermore, expect some *big* announcements of titles in the coming months - we can't say anything about them at the moment (we're such teases), but this article will be updated as new titles are announced!

On with the list!

Alice Sisters

Published by JoshProd - set for release early 2021

The first of numerous JoshProd titles in this list, Alice Sisters is a follow up to previous indie platformer Alice's Mom's Rescue, a quite charming little game from prolific previous indie developer Orion. Like the original, this appears to be a 2D platformer, but with the interesting addition of co-op mechanics. Each player guides one of the sisters (or a single player can switch between them) through a promised 28 stages, each using different abilities to combat the games puzzles. 4 game modes are also promised, and screenshots show a charming, colourful world, very much in the style of Orion's previous titles.

A DC release was hinted at in the summer of 2019, but little was revealed for this cross-platform release (a Steam and Mega Drive/Genesis release are also on the cards), but the trailer dropped by JoshProd in February 2021 has the game running and looking as charmingly fun as I hoped it would. I'm looking forward to this one, a proven developer, a genre we've not seen much of, and an intriguing co-op mode which could be very enjoyable indeed.

You can pre-order the PAL version here, the US version here and the Japanese version here.
You can also download the PC version of the game from Orion's itch.io page here.

Andro Dunos 

Published by JoshProd - set for release September 2021

Whilst Pixelheart / JoshProd made a big deal about the release of a brand new sequel, going as far as presenting a special event on Youtube for it's launch, the pending release of the original Andro Dunos went a little under the radar. It's perhaps not surprising though that this early 90's horizontal shooter is making it's way to the Dreamcast. It'd been rumoured for months, the acquisition of Visco's library by the publishers made it an obvious choice, and for many DC players, they've been enjoying the game via emulation for some time anyway. A decent, colourful example of the genre, it's become a minor cult favourite with some fans, and certainly won't be out of place in the plentiful supply of indie shooters the system is home too. There are possibly a few issues regarding how the emulation (presuming it will be played via emulation, like other Neo Geo ports from JoshProd) will work, and it's own sequel is now taking much of the attention away from this release, but it's a welcome addition to the library.

You can pre-order the PAL version here, the US version here and the Japanese version here.

Andro Dunos II

Published by JoshProd - set for release September 2021

JoshProd's continued independent output is staggering. As well as bringing us 6 new games and a compilation in 2021 as part of the 5th wave of releases, they also announced this – a sequel to Visco's popular horizontal shooter Andro Dunos (which is also set for a Dreamcast release), developed by Japanese indie developers Picorinne Soft (who also developed previous indie title Battle Crust). Announced in a YouTube launch spectacle, this multi-platform release is possibly the publishers most impressive 2D title to date, and comes off the announcement that they've now acquired the full rights to the Visco library. Whilst this means old Visco titles will no doubt also be on their way, this is somewhat different – a brand new title. Boasting impressive detailed sprite work, a killer soundtrack by Allister Brimble, and the usual high quality production and artwork that JoshProd are known for, it's sure to make an impression. The game is set to follow JoshProd's usual packaging format – PAL case, reversible US and Japanese CD case, as well as a limited edition 'Space Songs' version with OST.

You can pre-order the standard PAL version here, the US version here and the Japanese version here. The Space Songs editions can be pre-ordered here (PAL), here (Japanese) and here (US).

Astro Port Collector

Published by JoshProd - set for release early 2021

As part of their 5th wave of releases, JoshProd announced an Astro Port Collector release, including 4 Astro Port titles - Satazius Next and Wolflame, both also seeing standalone releases, alongside 2 titles that are only available, it seems, as part of this collection - Gigantic Army and Zangeki Warp. 
The contents of this set is listed as being a 4-fold digipack DVD case, so it'll certainly look different than other JoshProd releases. Of course, the most intriguing element are the two titles only available in this set, so let's take a little look at these (for information about Satazius Next and Wolflame, see their entries in this list).

Gigantic Army is a side scrolling platform shooter, a gentle homage to the genre's 90's glories, and a game which was released originally on the PC a decade ago, before seeing a standalone release on the Switch in 2019. It's original release saw a decent response, and fans of of this type of game will certainly get something out of it. There's detailed 2D sprites in a style I've come to expect of these Astro port games, and lots of gratuitous violence with some striking bosses, all making for quite the exciting prospect.

Zangeki Warp is a more recent Astro Port title, coming out in 2015, and another Horizontal shooter from the developers. The original version of this article depicted it as a game very much in the style of R-Type or Gradius - but it's now clear that's doing the game a disservice. The game's title points towards the use of a 'Warp', which appears to allow you to warp across the screen, leaving destruction in your path when you do. Video footage of the very impressive, screen filling enemies being taken down by a warp slice, exploding in a shower of blood and guts, is one of the more impressive things I've seen from any DC indie title. With this unique style, great visuals and a solid performance in the frame rate department, this looks to be another very exciting prospect for the console. 

At the moment, neither of these titles is set for a standalone release, although JoshProd have hinted that may be a possibility in the future. Both of the games exclusive to this set are amongst the most exciting, and technically impressive, games of this wave of releases, but at the moment they are only obtainable as part of the collection - which at €99,90 is not the most affordable of options. Saying that, it places each title at just €25, which is good value, but we'd of loved the option of individual releases for those who don't want every title. 

After now seeing both Zangeki Warp and Gigantic Army running, the Astro Port collector package, limited as it is to 2,000 copies, seems like it may very well be a decent value collection of games - including some of the most exciting new indie game prospects for the Dreamcast.

You can pre-order this collection (there's only the one version) here. 

Elysian Shadows

Published by Watermelon (previously announced to be the case, unclear what the publication status would be now) - unknown release date

This multi-platform RPG will be familiar to anyone with more than a passing interest in the Dreamcast indie scene, and despite some serious delays, it's still one of the more anticipated future releases. Through the 'Adventures in Game Development' series, a successful Kickstarter campaign back in 2014 and some widespread press coverage, Elysian Shadows gathered some considerable hype, and technically, the game looks mightily impressive. 2D and 3D RPG elements, dynamic audio, fancy physics and graphical effects, weather, VMU mini games – the list of features goes on. 

Sadly, those aforementioned delays seem to continue, and with periods of silence from the once talkative developers, the current release date for the game seems to be in limbo. If it does get a release – as unlikely as that now seems - it could still end up being one of the hottest indie releases for the console, but patience is starting to wane by the Dreamcast faithful now.  

We've covered the game numerous times over the years, including here with a developer interview from Tom. 

Flight of the Amazon Queen

Published by Retro Surge Games - possible 2021 release?

Initially released in 1995, Flight of the Amazon Queen was a point and click adventure game released in the golden age of the genre, and one that received a fairly positive reaction at the time. Retro Surge games, the new Dreamcast indie publisher, announced that this 25th anniversary edition was due in 2020. Presumably containing much of the extras that the 20th anniversary edition for mobile devices added, it would be another classic title added to the 'official' indie catalogue. Of course, seeing as the original version was made available for free some years ago, and works well in ScummVM, many DC owners may have already experienced it – but any opportunity to buy an authorised version is always good (especially when done right). 

Although things have gone a little quiet, and the game didn't materialise for it's late 2020 scheduled release date (with only vague hints appearing since - although the delay can be somewhat excused by the global pandemic that swept the world), Retro Surge's website now shows a Spring 2021 release and 'pre orders opening soon'. Hopefully we won't have to wait long for this one, as the point and click genre is a under-represented one on the console, and ScummVM has shown that many games work extremely well on the platform. 

Retro Surge games website (where hopefully pre-orders will be going live soon) can be found here.

Ghoul Grind: Night of the Necromancer

Published by Woog Worx - due October 2021

The 2021 indie scene seems to have a fair few NES games making their way onto the Dreamcast - we had the excellent Flea! last year, with it's sequel Tapeworm Disco Puzzle due later in 2021, as well as Reknum: Fantasy of Dreams on it's way - and that trend seems to be continuing with the upcoming release of Ghoul Grind: Night of the Necromancer. Currently in the last few days of it's Kickstarter campaign, this auto scrolling, action platforming, horror themed title has smashed it's own funding goals, so it's NES cartridge release is all set, and fantastically (for us Dreamcast devotees at least) their stretch goal has also been met, which means a physical release for us as well! 

Fans of 8-bit horror aesthetics are sure to be delighted with the cute halloween inspired graphics, and the game looks to be a fun addition to the library. At the moment the DC version is only available when backing a NES cartridge teir, but the developers have stated they may sell them individually at a later date. Not everyone is going to be super excited by an 8-bit title on the DC, and certainly it doesn't match some of the technical feats of other in development indie titles, but gameplay is the real litmus test for any game, and this looks like a fun one. 

The games Kickstarter campaign page can be found here, but it ends mere hours after this article goes live. Woog Worx have a website available here too, and a demo of the NES game can be downloaded here

Intrepid Izzy

Published by Senile Team - 2021 release

There's 2 reasons why you should be excited for this successfully funded Kickstarter game. First, it's blend of 2D platforming adventure with 16-bit beat em up style action, seems to be the perfect retro-themed mix, and looks absolutely gorgeous in the screenshots (and demo) that have been released. Secondly, and perhaps even more importantly, it's being developed by Senile Team. Few indie developers have a track record as strong as this Dutch team, what with the highly praised Rush Rush Rally and always popular Beats of Rage engine, so for a change, this is one work in progress where there's absolutely no doubting the end quality. It looks and sounds fantastic, so there's no reason it shouldn't play fantastic too. 

Whilst it's been delayed a fair bit, the PC version is already out (and has been well received) and the Dreamcast version is progressing rapidly, with a recent update from the team (no one can fault Senile Team's superb regular updates) announcing that mastering of discs could be happening very soon indeed. Not long to wait for this one, and we think it's going to be a rather special one when it arrives.

We've covered this one at the yard many times before, such as this preview some years ago from Tom. The game has a website here and the original Kickstarter campaign page can be found here

Midsummer

Published by Duranik - unknown release date

Little is known about Duranik's next DC project, aside from a brief video released in 2019, showing a game with strong Shinobi vibes. Not only is this ninja theme intriguing, the visuals in the video were better even than Sturmwind – Duranik's first, much heralded, Dreamcast release. Despite scant information, an 'it's done when it's done' philosophy, and crowd funding being ruled out by the developers, Midsummer remains one of the most hotly anticipated titles in development, being made by a developer who have already proved their ability. It may still be some way off though. 

No news on any sort of pre-order as of yet, but Duranik's website can be found here

Mortadelo y Filemón: El sulfato atómico

Published by Erbe games - due for a late 2021 release

A port of a 1998 PC point and click adventure title, itself based on a 1969 comic for the Mort and Phil characters, Mortadelo y Filemón: El sulfato atómico is the second Spanish adventure title Kickstarted by Erbe software. With a very small target, which was met quickly, it's certainly got more attention than their earlier release (Dráscula, the review of which can be found here) – but I remain unconvinced as to whether this one will be produced any better than Dráscula was. The lack of quality on the packaging, and emulation, fronts for their first release makes it a questionable 'legitimate indie release', but we could be surprised. Notable also for entirely being in Spanish, with the higher level of attention this one has received through the kickstarter, we may be surprised with a high qualiy project yet, and who knows, possibly even an English language version?

We covered the launch of the campaign here, and you can go and support the ongoing funding campaign here.  

Okinawa Rush

Published by JoshProd - unknown release date (possibly 2022?)

Rich in Japanese mythology and martial arts lore, this is 16-bit style loving, bad guy beating, side scrolling heaven. Fans of 90's style platforming-beat em up action will be delighted by this high quality indie release, featuring some finely detailed artwork – but if it'll ever come to the Dreamcast now, we're not sure. The developers certainly expressed an interest (and it's listed on the games website), and with JoshProd now on board for publishing it seems likely – at least, once the current gen releases are done. It was teased as part of the third wave of JoshProd Dreamcast releases (on the original graphics advertising the forthcoming titles), but was mysteriously notable for it's absence in the final set. 

We have to assume that this will make it's way over to the Dreamcast at some point, but this may still be some time away. 

The game has a website here, and is well worth a visit to support the game, whether or not we ever receive a Dreamcast version.

Reknum Souls & Ploid

Published by Nape games - due for a late 2021 release

This cute retro styled 2D platform-adventure passed me by when it's campaign was live on Kickstarter. A multi-system release, it promises an old school, anime-style title with inspiration from classics such as Mega Man and Zelda. The Dreamcast release is a port of the NES version (there are actually 3 different versions – Mega Drive, Switch and NES, each with different titles, which did cause some confusion as to whether the DC was receiving 'Fantasy of Dreams' or 'Souls' (the NES release), but Nape games confirmed in an update on Kickstarter that it would be the latter), and whilst it's retro charm may be lost on some, I'm quite happy to see titles like this come to the system. 

Better still, it looks as though another NES platformer from Nape Games, Ploid, that saw a Kickstarter in 2020 as well, is also getting a physical release as a Dreamcast port – although at the moment it seems you can only get that when buying Reknum. Still - two new Dreamcast games is nothing to be sniffed at, and both are sure to be graciously received by those that enjoy 8-bit aesthetics and gameplay.

You can check out the games Kickstarter page here and you can possibly still purchase the Dreamcast versions of the games here.

Rocketron

Published by JoshProd - due for an early 2021 release

A return to the Astro Port library, a back catalogue that has already delivered us Armed Seven, and which much of the 5th wave of JoshProd releases seems to be made up from, Rocketron is a little different, in that it's a relatively new title (releasing on Steam in 2020) and it's not quite the traditional shooter type game that Astro Port are more famous for. Bearing a few similarities with Bangai-O, this is a side scrolling action shooter where you control your cybernetic humanoid through several stages, face off against screen size bosses and get to play with quite the arsenal of weapons. 

Most interestingly enough, the game is described by many as a metroidvania style experience - something we're lacking on the DC, and a mouth watering prospect. Having played a few Astro Port shooters, it's obvious they know their craft well, and with some very positive reviews of the Steam release, it's quite possible that this could be a legitimate contender for the top tier of the DC indie library. Footage of the game running displays a very impressive title indeed, and my anticipation for this one has only grown after watching it!

You can pre-order the PAL version here, the US version here and the Japanese version here.

Satazius Next

Published by JoshProd - due for an early 2021 release

Satazius Next is an intriguing game for many reasons. First released on Steam back in 2011, Satazius built up a small but rather strong fan-base, its horizontal shooting action recalling the Gradius series, and receiving a very positive response. This 'Next' version promised a completely reworked game, and found it's way onto Pixelheart's Shmup collections for both Switch and the Wii U - again, receiving a good response from reviewers. Solid shooting action, colourful graphics and a well designed weapons upgrading system all sound very good indeed. 

To be fair, the game is available with two other titles on the Switch for a lower price, with the PC version selling for under £5. We've never been shy about bemoaning the high cost of indie titles, and it's difficult to ignore it here, but it is hard not to be impressed by a well received modern generation console title coming to the Dreamcast. Other 5th wave releases from JoshProd are perhaps more exciting, but this looks to be another solid entry into the indie shooter library. 

You can pre-order the PAL version here, the US version here and the Japanese version here.

Shadow Gangs

Published by JKM Corp. - possibly due for a 2021/2022 release

Another game which has seen a successful launch on modern generation platforms, Shadow Gangs takes a healthy level of inspiration from Shinobi in it's pursuit of retro styled, 2D beat em up platforming. Boasting some lovingly detailed, colourful visuals, a thumping soundtrack and all the shuriken throwing action you'd expect, it's also quite possibly heading the way of Sega's 128-bit console. Although originally not scheduled for a release on the console, it seems the developer has warmed to the idea of releasing it on the platform, and it's still, tentatively, scheduled to come our way at some point. At the present time, the current generation seems to be the priority, not surprisingly, and Dreamcast footage seems to be absent, but the fact that a Dreamcast port is still being talked about bodes well.

There's been a long running thread on the always informative Dreamcast-talk forums here, which discusses much about the game and the developers plans.

Slave

Published by Goat Store - release date unknown, but potentially 2021

Announced some years ago to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the Dreamcast, Slave is another indie product with a tumultuous history that has suffered long, long delays. Now more likely to be a tie in with the 25th anniversary, Jay Townsend and Isotope softworks retro- futuristic themed FPS, which wowed with it's early videos, could still be a defining moment. It looks unique, throwing a ton of action the way of the player, and is much as a homage to early arcade play as it is to the FPS genre. 

Updates have been a bit thin on the ground the few years, other than the occasional announcement of a 'bug' or 'issue', which has irked some due to the game 'being nearly finished' for some time. GOAT store, however, are still saying that the game will emerge - one day - and if it does, as unlikely as that may now seem, it's still got the potential to turn some heads. We have been waiting an awfully long time though.

We've covered the game numerous times on the DCJY (here, here, and here as well) and if the game does ever emerge, GOAT store would be the place to go - you can find them here

Summoning Signals

Published by Retro Surge Games - possible 2021 release

From some of the same team that was working on Reaperi Cycle, Summoning Signals is a title that matches some of that games 'oddness' – primarily through it not being your usual sort of DC indie title, but also due to a, presumably intentional, air of mystery around the game. Not much is known about it, despite no less than 2 demos already, but with inspiration from games such as L.O.L., E.G.G and Seaman, you can probably envisage that this won't be your average release. 

A point and click interface, cool looking 'photogrammetry' style and an abstract, mystery / sci-fi theme, it's looking rather special. A release had been listed for late 2020 from Retro Surge Games, but this seems to have pushed back to late 2021 at the moment.

We've covered the demo on the Junkyard here. The game's website is here

Super Nutmeg

Possibly published by DragonBox - possible 2021 release

Retroguru are known for various homebrew projects on multiple platforms, including on the Dreamcast. Super Nutmeg, an update to a browser game, is their latest project, with a DC version currently sat at version 0.8. They've a history of occasionally releasing games in a physical format, and back in 2018 they did say DragonBox publishers would be dealing with a physical release of this title, so there's a chance we may see this colourful little platformer with a killer chiptune soundtrack, and classic old school mechanics, make its way onto a pressed disc in the future. 

You can download the Dreamcast CDI image of the current version here.

Supercharged Robot Vulkaiser

Published by JoshProd - due for an early 2021 release

Another Astro Port title announced as part of the 5th wave of JoshProd releases, Supercharged Robot Vulkaiser is a now 13 year old title, first seeing life on the PC back in 2007, and the oldest Astro Port game yet to see it's way to the DC (a year older than Armed Seven). Taking a massive dose of inspiration from 70's Japanese animation, it's a brightly coloured, horizontal shooter for fans of the sort of so-cheesy-it's-good, massive combining robots style of Saturday morning cartoons. It met with a generally positive response upon release, and for it's 2015 Steam release, although hardcore shooting fans do point out the rather naive nature of the game. 

The game is set to release with 3 gloriously different cover art variations, and with JoshProd's usual high quality production values. Whilst it probably won't quite reach the levels of past DC indie hits such as Sturmwind, it's certainly a nice little addition to the library, and footage of the game shows it running without any issues.

You can pre-order the PAL version here, the US version here and the Japanese version here.

Tapeworm Disco Puzzle

Published by Lowtek games - set for a late 2021 release

A spin off/sequel to Flea!, Tapeworm Disco Puzzle stars a nightclub owning tapeworm in an 8-bit puzzle game, inspired by titles such as Snake. And if that's not just one of the finest descriptions of a game ever, I don't know what is. Successfully Kickstarted, it'll appear on the Dreamcast by the end of 2021, and if it's half as charming as it's predecessor (the lovely 8-bit Flea!, which I covered here), it'll be a welcome addition. 

8 bit visuals, simple gameplay with clever puzzles, and cute characters abound. A demo is already up on the games itch.io site, and it's rather entertaining! One to look out for.

The games Kickstarter campaign page can be found here, and you can play the demo in your browser here. You can't purchase the game yet, but if it's anything like Flea!, you'll be able to buy from Lowtek Games Etsy page here when finalised. Grab yourself a copy of Flea whilst you're there!

The Textorcist

Published by Gamefairy - set for an April 2021 release

Sometimes an Indie game comes along that we weren't expecting, and it's fair to say The Textorcist was one of those. Originally released on Steam back in a pre-pandemic world of 2019, Tom summed up the game in his article on it's release perfectly - a top down RPG, bullet hell shmup and typing tutor ala Typing of the Dead, all rolled into one demonic whole. If that description alone doesn't warrant an instant buy, I don't know what will.

It's PC release was received positively, and the game will see you take the role of Ray Bibbia as he faces off against all manners of evil, a bible in hand and the odd Latin prayer thrown in for maximum blashphemous effect. Typing of the Dead is one of my all time favourite titles, and as a big horror nerd as well, The Textorcist seems tailor made for me, although for those without a Dreamcast keyboard, use of the controller is also possible. The trailer for the game looks superb, boasting great, detailed visuals, and as a concept it's certainly the most intriguing we've seen in the DC indie scene so far. 

There are two versions available on Gamefairy - the limited edition is limited to 666 (nice) copies, and comes with a sleeve and OST (you can find this here). There's also a standard version available for a little less (here). You can read Tom's article on the game here

Tough Guy

Published by JoshProd - set for release early in 2021

Although most of the next wave of JoshProd releases appear to be of the shooting variety, Panda Entertainment's Tough Guy is most certainly not. If it's not a game you're familiar with, you're forgiven - originally coming out in 1995 on PC, it's a fighting game which... let's be generous and say 'respectfully takes inspiration from'... Street Fighter II, developed and released by Panda Entertainment, a Taiwanese developer that is also known for Sango Fighter, a Chinese Three Kingdoms fighter, released on PC's and the Super A'can. If you know Street Fighter, you know what awaits you in this title - a globe spanning cast of fighters, interesting worldwide stages and some combo-based fighting action. It has a couple of unique features - most prominently the ability to regenerate your fighters health - and does what it sets out to do without much fuss. An updated version of the title was released for PC, for free, in fact, in 2019 by Super Fighter Team, who bought the rights to the developers back catalogue, and you can download it here to give it a try. 

The last indie fighter - or more correctly, JoshProd's release of the 90's Visco fighter Breakers - was criticised by many, but was enjoyable enough, and we hope the same can be said of Tough Guy. The game appears to run quite well in the 2021 trailer, but as always with fighters, even small drops in performance will be a potential problem. 
It's also interesting to note the involvement of Piko Interactive in this release. Presumably, they hold the right to release physical versions of the game, but it does open up yet another possibility - Piko Interactive hold the rights to a large number of retro titles, and if this hints at possible future Dreamcast releases of some of these titles... well, we'll have an awful lot of indie titles to look forward to...

You can pre-order the PAL version here, the US version here and the Japanese version here.

Unnamed JoshProd product

Published by JoshProd - possible 2021 release?

In early February 2021, JoshProd dropped a teaser trailer of their upcoming games for 2021. 8 of these were known, and are covered in this article – 2, however, were new to me. The first is this as of yet untitled beat em up, seemingly in the style of Streets of Rage, which boasted some neat animation and colourful, detailed 2D sprites. The main character appears to be Tia Langray, a character from the previously ported Breakers (and it's sequel, Breakers Revenge), but unlike that game's Neo Geo origins, this appears to be a brand new title. It's possibly in co-development with a Saturn version (JoshProd hinted that the character would appear in a Saturn title), but regardless, it's a pretty exciting development, a genre that we'd gratefully receive, and looks to be a pretty stylish game as well. Hopefully, this will be a late 2021 hit.

Verdict Guilty

Published by JoshProd - set for a possible 2021 release

The second game teased in the JoshProd 2021 games trailer, after the above title, was this completely unexpected port of a 2016 2d fighter from Retro Army (who also developed Super Trench Attack, a game ported by JoshProd to the Switch). Set in Neo Seoul, the city has become overrun with terrorists and criminals, and it's up to various branches of law enforcement to deal with them. Boasting some neat 2D artwork, an intriguing mix of characters, and the promise of 'gun based fights', this has the potential to be a rather intriguing addition to the library. No news as of yet on this release, and with JoshProd now having a very hefty amount of titles presumably on their way to us, we're not sure exactly when this will appear. 

Wolflame

Published by JoshProd - due for release early 2021

The final game of the next wave of JoshProd titles is another Astro Port title - Wolflame. This vertical shooter, familiar to anyone who has ever played a Toaplan title, it a bullet drenched blast-fest which has received a very positive response on Steam since it's release. It also made it's way onto the Switch shooter collection from Pixelheart, so it's again really quite impressive that it sees it's way onto the Dreamcast. Whilst we're not lacking in quality horizontal shmups, it's also not a genre that we'd turn our nose up at. Footage of the game running shows a considerably increased performance than an earlier version we played, which is fantastic news.
Whilst other options to play this title may be cheaper, we've no problem paying a premium for a strong entry in this genre, and if Wolflame can produce the goods, we'll be very happy indeed.


You can pre-order the PAL version here, the US version here and the Japanese version here.

The eagle eyed amongst you will notice that the above list of games doesn't account for the '30 upcoming indie titles' that we've been talking about on social media. There's two reasons for that. First, there's titles we can't yet discuss, some of which have been rumoured about a lot, and others not so much. We're not going to break any confidentiality by talking about them here - suffice to say, there's at least 5 more to add to the above that should be announced within the next few months. You can come back and call us liars if that doesn't turn out to be true - but we're pretty satisfied that it will be.

There's also several games that are, at the moment at least, in various stages of 'development hell'. It's a grand way of saying 'on the back burner' in many cases, or simply that the developers have gone quiet recently, but whilst all of these could possibly see a release one day, at the moment, that's possibly quite unlikely. 

40 Winks

40 Winks appeared on Kickstarter in 2018, and was successfully funded for a N64 release. Originally appearing on the PS1, it was a mildly entertaining, colourful 3D platformer, and clearly the prospect of a new N64 cartridge making an appearance (many years after it was originally canned) gathered some serious support, as the title breezed through it's original funding goals. The interesting thing for Dreamcast owners, is that Piko Interactive included a stretch goal for a DC version, one which would use the FMV from the PS1 title and the N64's Co-op mode. Sadly, the stretch goal wasn't met, but there's been murmurings about a potential DC funding project in the future, and with Piko having some pedigree when it comes to releasing retro releases, the possibility of playing this on Sega's machine can't be dismissed. 

The game's original Kickstarter campaign can be found here, and we looked at the title in an article some time ago, here. 

Ameba

The team at Retro Sumus announced this 'western visual novel' some years ago, but it seems to have been put somewhat on the back burner whilst work continued with Xenocider. The prospect of playing an entry in the ubiquitous genre on the DC, without having to use a translation guide to do so, is very appealing, and it's detective-noir feel has some similarities to the Missing Parts series. Sadly, as mentioned, Retro Sumus have seemingly paused work on the game indefinitely, but with Xenocider now released, there's always a possibility we'll still get to see this at some point in the future.

We covered the announcement of this one some years ago (here).

Hypertension: Harmony of Darkness

Seemingly in development forever, Hypertension is another indie release that seems to have stalled in progress quite significantly in recent years. It's promise of bringing a classic FPS experience to the DC, with healthy inspiration from the likes of Blood and Duke Nukem 3D, and with plenty of blood, gore and violence, is still an appetising prospect. Videos of in game footage have come and gone, and things have been worryingly quiet at times. New shots emerged in mid 2018, but it's all gone quiet since, leading to most now believing this is a dead project. I'm ever an optimist though, and if it does ever get a release, and fulfils even half of it's promise, it'll be met with an enthusiastic response.

We've looked at developments on the game several times, including here - back in 2009! 

Reaperi Cycle

This intriguing isometric RPG-puzzle game saw a short demo ('The Hideout demo') released in 2020, which was very enjoyable. Running on an impressive engine, it was a rather cerebral experience that certainly made me, for one, want to see what else was in store. Unfortunately, the project is now on hiatus as some of the team are working on Summoning Signals, another indie development, but it would be a crying shame if we didn't see what else this has to offer in the future. 

We've covered the demo of the game here

Tanglewood

After an incredibly successful release of the game on the Mega Drive, and appearing on an Evercade cart alongside another acclaimed DC indie Xeno Crisis, the prospect that we may finally get a port of this Disney inspired platformer is high. Whilst it missed it's original DC stretch target on Kickstarter by just over £100, the games creator was always open to one day seeing this make the leap – and as far as I know, that's still a possibility. The beautiful 16-bit animation and charming inhabitants of the world would be a welcome addition, although nothing has been announced still.

We've covered the game a few times before (here, for instance!)

Tristam Island

It's slightly unfair lumping Tristam Island in with games that possibly won't get a release, as this is a fully working title, available to purchase for download right now from here. A classic style text adventure, this sees you as a survivor of a plane crash, having to explore the many mysteries of the island you wash up on. I'm a big fan of text adventures, and whilst I won't spoil too much (as a review of this game is on the way), this is a rather good example from Hugo Labrande. There is possible talk of a physical version for the game, although there's little information about it, and with a multi-platform approach to the game, how much of a priority a physical DC version would have, I'm not sure. Worth keeping an eye on though. 

And it doesn't end there. We have the incredible Simulant engine in development by Luke Benstead (read about that here), which promises some amazing things in future. We have Rizzo Island in development (follow along with the progress on that here), and several other projects at various stages of early work.

All in all, we have a huge amount to look forward to on the Dreamcast in the next couple of years, and these titles may just be the tip of the iceberg. We will of course continue following and reporting on every new release for the console, here at the Junkyard, and we're excited to see what lies ahead!

Did we miss something? Get something horribly wrong? Are you now screaming at the screen in a fit of rage that we said something inaccurate? Leave us a comment if so, and don't forget to follow us on social media. Oh, and probably best to calm down too - it's only video games, right?


10 comments:

OneStar said...

Elysian Shadows isn't a game and never will be. There is a reason Falco went silent, he wasted all the time/money on his self made drama and drove away everyone who was trying to help him make a game. He has a moved, started a job, has a family now and will never release anything as there never was an actual game there. Just a big toolkit.

DCGX said...

I agree with OneStar. There are some optimistic titles on this list for sure.

I backed 'Intrepid Izzy' and preordered 'The Textorcist.' Anything JoshProd is a "wait for reviews, but probably not." The poor Neo Geo emulation always worries me.

DrLeatherface said...

Yep. Falcon never made a game. He made a toolkit and and vmu emulator with all of our money then disappeared. Thas it. He doesn't care at all either.

Spaceturnip said...

Sure, there is some optimism in the inclusion of some of these, although not that much. In the main list, other than Elysian Shadows, Shadow Gangs and Slave, I'd be confident in saying 100% will see a physical release before mid 2022. Partly down to the fact that - so far at least - JoshProd have always delivered on their Dreamcast content.

As for why the three games above that I mention, aren't in the secondary list of titles - the last update from GOAT store clearly said work is progressing on Slave and Shadow Gangs developer still seems to want to bring the game to the DC. Neither have been 'cancelled' as of yet.

As for the 'controversial' (?) inclusion of Elysian Shadows - I think I made my thoughts about whether the game is going to come out pretty clear in the summary. I'd be shocked (understatement) if it ever sees the light of day, but it's not been 'officially' cancelled as of yet, and when we're just off a year that saw a release of Paprium, nothing is impossible.

Tom Charnock said...

Superb round up Mike. Waiting for this to be turned into a video on YouTube with zero reference or credit to your article in 3...2...1...

Zezima said...

Long live the renaissance.

nocarpayment said...

I followed Hypertension for years i dont think we will see this one either...Good content and so excited theyll still keeping the Dream alive..

Unknown said...

Great list, but what about Dead Tomb?

Unknown said...

I hope for midsummer or okinawa rush should be a dream ...... i suggest kickstarter for midsummer maybe we can make it true
but i see a video of Astro Port Collector its a shame that dc version is all low resolutiom sprite;

OneStar said...

It's such a shame Hypentension dev went belly up. It looked like their team was making some amazing things. However I have a feeling the later footage we were seeing was running on a PC and not a DC anymore. Back when they used to post on social media, they always ignored this question when asked. Last I saw anything about this was someone posting at the DCTalk saying the team and the project itself were in shambles and never happening.