We rarely hear anything about the video game industry in the Philippines, but it has apparently grown since its humble beginnings in the early 2000s. According to the Game Developers Association of the Philippines, the game development sector in the country earned around 70 million dollars from the late 2011 to early 2012. Unfortunately, until today it remains to be one of the most underrated video game industries in Asia, even among the Filipinos themselves.
Nevertheless, there are several notable games that were developed by our very own video game industry. They may not be at par with the other games being played, but at least we can see that they’re taking small steps forward into the competitive portion of the industry. Without further ado, here are 8 Filipino video games that you may want to check out.
The first on the list would be the game that pioneered the game development industry in the country. Anito: Defend a Land Enraged, a role-playing game developed by Anino Games (now Anino Playlab), was released last November 2003 for Microsoft Windows. It was warmly received by Filipinos mainly because of the use of familiar features like terrifying creatures from Philippine mythology.
When it was released in the United States, however, the game received a lot of criticism in terms of game design, controls, and being an alleged rip-off of the popular Diablo franchise.
Developed by Erick Garayblas of Kuyi Mobile, Streetfood Tycon is an iOS game about time management wherein you have to serve your customers street food within a certain allotted time. It was downloaded over 4 million times, became the top game in various countries, and was chosen as the Best Mobile Game of 2012 in the Philippine Game Development Festival.
The best thing about it is that it makes you want to eat some kwek-kwek and fishballs. Yum.
One of the first Filipino mobile game applications, SIPA: Street Kick! was developed by Team O.P.S. Inc. The game’s main objective is for you to hit a shuttlecock with your feet and elbows for as long as you can. It has over 50,000 downloads on Google Play, and was featured in several news channels like ABS-CBN TV Patrol, GMA News TV, and Rappler.
Filipinos have a reputation for being lazy, but this mobile game developed by TOOCH Inc. suggests otherwise. Rather than emphasizing the true character of Juan Tamad, the iconic Filipino character was depicted in such a way that he can eventually overcome his laziness. The game features challenging puzzles and introduces positive values through various Filipino folklore related to Juan Tamad.
The Adventures of Juan Not Tamad was rated 4+ in the iOS App Store.
Pretentious Game was created by Filipino game developer Bari Silvestre of BulkyPix. It was downloaded over 100,000 times on Google Play and was awarded the Director’s Choice Award at Casual Connect San Francisco 2013.
The game is basically about a blue square that is passionately in love with a pink square. To win the pink square’s love, the blue square needs to surpass several obstacles. With its relatable and unique gameplay, the game received good feedback from people around the world.
Developed by Aeus Tech, an Ilonggo startup specializing in mobile applications, Hit the Can is about a boy named Ace who is determined to become the best slipper thrower in the National Hit the Can Tournament. The game was rated 4+ in the iOS App Store, but unfortunately it as well-received as the other games on this list.
Catch the Guava is one of the more recent Filipino mobile games developed by 88GamePub. The mechanics of the game are simple: the main character, Juan, needs to open his mouth to catch fresh and golden guavas. By doing so he is able to woo a girl named Marie.
Since the game’s launch last October 11, it gained over 100,000 downloads on Google Play, and will release an iOS version on November 11.
Last but definitely not the least, Nightfall: Escape is the very first horror game in the country that’s currently undergoing development by Zeenoh Games. The game is about an aspiring journalist who attempts to investigate an abandoned mansion, after hearing reports of people missing in the Northern Philippines.
If you’re interested in trying it out, an early access version of the game was recently uploaded in Steam and would cost you P359.95. So far, the game has received good feedback from its alpha testers, and is constantly being updated by Zeenoh Games.
What do you think? Are you interested in playing these locally-made video games?