The Toronto Comic Arts Festival took place back in May, and if you managed to pull yourself away from TCAF prime, you might recall Bit Bazaar, the gaming-focused offshoot that ran in conjunction with the event. TCAF proper is still six months off, but you won’t have to wait that long to get another arcade fix.
That’s because the first Bit Bazaar was such a big hit they’ve decided to do it again. The Bit Bazaar Winter Market takes place on Saturday, December 7th from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Bento Miso, and it’s a fantastic opportunity to meet dozens of exhibitors showcasing games, comics, and local food.
One game worth checking out is Archive, Memoria Technica from Misfit Children Games. Archive is a twin-stick shooter/tower defense hybrid in the vein of Geometry Wars, but with a much more diverse array of customizable weaponry and interplanetary level design. The setting, story, and music is based on the Hindu text Baghavad Gita (“I am become death, destroyer of worlds.”)
Archive has already been in development for two years, and the studio is currently running an Indiegogo campaign to raise funds to complete the project. You can head over to Bit Bazaar, play the game, meet the developers, and then pitch in to help make the finished version happen.
That’s one of the cool things about living in Toronto. You can track games like Jazzpunk, Actual Sunlight, and Starwhal throughout development, seeing how they evolve while providing feedback directly to the developers. It’s more personal than an open beta, and you can still tell your friends that you got to play it first.
The festivities begin with a kickoff party on Friday night and continue all day Saturday, so head on over to Bento Miso (862 Richmond St. West) to play some great games, buy some cool merchandise, and meet the creators responsible for the next wave of hit titles coming out of Toronto.