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Screenshot of Pixel Tap Instant - a partly filled in pixel art is shown

Bringing our games to new platforms

With more and more gamers using multiple devices to play casual games, we’ve recently taken our first steps into the world of Facebook Instant Games.

Facebook Instant Games is a platform that allows players to play games across their devices, be they computers, phones or tablets, with a cohesive experience across the devices. With Facebook Instant Games, there’s no need to install a separate app for each game you want to play – they can all be played within the browser on a computer from the comfort of your News Feed, or from within Facebook Messenger on mobile. You can also embrace the social side of games by sharing what you’re playing with friends and family.

So far, we’ve brought two of our games to the Instant Games platform – SUDOKU plus is a completely free game, with a plethora of puzzle types and difficulty levels. It’s super simple to jump into and play, with intuitive controls and tools to help you play in the way you like best, so why not give it a go today? Play here, or search for SUDOKU plus on Messenger.

We’ve also created a new Instant Games version of our newest release, Pixel Tap. If you’ve been wanting to try out Pixel Tap but haven’t got round to installing the app, this is the perfect opportunity to give it a go! Play here, or search for Pixel Tap Colour by Number on Messenger.

Screenshot of Pixel Tap Instant - a partly filled in pixel art is shownScreenshot of SUDOKU plus - a Sudoku X is open

The Inertia team in blue Crystal Maze bomber jackets, posing with excited expressions (except two men who look confused) and arms out, in front of a picture of the Crystal Dome.

Start the Fans!

For our now traditional post-Christmas Christmas do, we took a trip to London this month!

First off we took on The Crystal Maze Live Experience. Based on the TV game show which many of us remember fondly from our childhoods, our team had to travel through different themed zones (the Aztec zone was our favourite!) and complete physical, mental, skill based and mystery challenges to earn crystals.

We don’t like to toot our own horn too much, but it’s fair to say we smashed it, collecting ELEVEN crystals – our host said eight was a good result, so he was very impressed with us! Our team name was “The Cat Stretchers”, named after Graeme’s love for gently stretching his pets*.

Unfortunately, we didn’t triumph in the Crystal Dome, where we were pegged to the post by another team who had some questionable help from their host, but we won’t bring that up, since we’re not sore losers…

The Inertia team in blue Crystal Maze bomber jackets, posing with excited expressions (except two men who look confused) and arms out, in front of a picture of the Crystal Dome.

We had a brilliant time in the Crystal Maze, and we all got involved in trying out the different tasks and helping each other with advice shouted through the little windows. We also only had one lock in (a word of advice – try not to send the clumsiest person on your team in for a challenge which involves lots of balancing)!

After a quick freshen up we were ready for some food, so we headed to All Star Lanes on Brick Lane. We enjoyed a delicious meal including amazing maple wings and probably the best mac ‘n’ cheese to have ever existed. We also got to try some delicious cocktails with fancy toppings and pun filled names.

Collage: 1 Lucy and Greg smiling at a table with cocktails, 2 Greg making a peace sign in gold room as Laura smiles with a cocktail, 3 Graeme, Lauren and Kim smiling at table with cocktails, 4 Greg and Lauren smile as they watch Graeme and Laura sing, 5 Kim, Lauren, Laura and Graeme around a table with cocktails, 6 Greg smiling while Graeme looks surprised

After the meal, we enjoyed a game of bowling (of which Greg was the deserving winner) and then a session in a private karaoke booth! If you’ve followed us for a while you’ll know that Rock Band is always a hit at the office; singer is always the most sought after role, so you can imagine how much we enjoyed this part of the night! We covered lots of the karaoke classics like the Grease Megamix and Total Eclipse of the Heart, alongside some of our personal favourites (did you know that Backstreet’s back?).

It was a very fun day, and a great way to relax after a busy year with several new games released. Here’s to a brilliant 2019 and many more days of fun!

Gif of Inertia team sitting on bowling alley benches as Graeme runs across the frame head down, blocking the view but clearly trying not to.

*No animals are harmed in the pet stretching process.

Collection of pixel patterns, some completed and some partially filled in

A year of puzzles!

As well as Catastronauts, 2018 saw us launch two new puzzle games!

In September we launched Just Jigsaws, and it was followed in December by Pixel Tap.

Just Jigsaws is a new jigsaw puzzle game; it can be played across desktop and mobile devices. The game has thousands of beautiful puzzle images and lots of new features – you can choose the number and style of pieces to play each puzzle in, create your own puzzles and use the ‘piece heap’ feature to sort pieces as you go along, and you can also play offline on mobile, making the game perfect for long trips!

Lots of images in rows, with scattered jigsaw pieces below and the words '1000's of stunning puzzles to choose from'Jigsaws in progress on a tablet and a phone, with the words 'Play across multiple devices'

Pixel Tap is a colour-by-number game with lots of different styles of artwork to suit every taste! From simple and cute pixel style patterns, to detailed larger patterns with thousands of blocks, you can choose your favourite packs to add to your collection. The relaxing gameplay has you fill in the squares by number with different colours – you can also choose the style of the blocks, and just like with Just Jigsaws you can play across desktop and mobile, and make your own patterns!

Collection of pixel patterns on a tablet screen, some completed and some partially filled in. Words at the top read 'Thousands of amazing patterns to discover!'
Partially completed pixel pattern of a unicorn with rainbow mane, on a tablet screen. Words at the top read 'Simple, easy and relaxing to play'

You can try out Just Jigsaws and Pixel Tap from the links on our homepage.

Catastronauts is coming to Switch!

We’re super excited to announce that Catastronauts will be blasting off on Nintendo Switch on 24th December (EUR/ANZ) and 3rd January (NOA)! To get ready for this much awaited release you can check out the trailer below to remind you of the interstellar chaos, testing challenges and frantic fun which you’ll enjoy in Catastronauts!

We know lots of Switch fans have been very eagerly awaiting the game’s release, so we’re really happy to be able to deliver this for you! Now, you’ll be able to take on attacking invaders wherever you are! We’ve also enjoyed the excuse to play lots more Catastronauts as part of our Switch testing.

Screenshot of a level in the game, with bombs, cracks and fire

Will you and your friends save the galaxy? Enlist in the Nintendo Switch eShop on 24th December and 3rd January! Or you can already pick up the game on Playstation 4, Xbox One and Steam for PC!

Close up shot of player putting out their fellow Catastronaut, who is on fire

Follow Catastronauts on your favourite social media to stay up-to-date with all the latest news and developments.

Follow Catastronauts on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram

Christmas Fun, Part 1

This year we decided to kick off our Christmas festivities and get into the Christmas mood with a proper Christmas dinner!

We headed to a local restaurant, The Old Fire Engine House, which is inside a lovely, homely Georgian building that used to house a horse-drawn fire engine at the turn of the century. We enjoyed a lovely three course meal, with nuts and oranges to finish. We shared some very, very bad but good cracker jokes, and Richard was the victor in the unspoken ‘who can keep their paper crown on the longest’ competition!
A round wooden table covered in cork placemats, glasses of various drinks and red and green napkins, Christmas crackers and flowers. People are seated around the edge wearing Christmassy clothes

After the meal, we headed back to the office to exchange our Secret Santa gifts!! They included some Harry Potter Lego, some cute animal socks, a Halo and Fallout themed t-shirt. We were all very happy with our lovely presents. We followed up the exchange with our much anticipated ‘Cola Taste Test’ – we stocked up on as many varieties of cola as we could get our hands on and undertook a blind taste test. It’s fair to say the confidence with which some players entered the contest was somewhat unwarranted… it’s hard to tell the difference between Cola when you’ve tried five types very quickly in a row! However, there were some impressive deductions, with Greg correctly identifying which two were the full sugar branded colas! Graeme managed a score of zero, which in itself is impressive, and everyone had started to pay great attention to the subtle differences in the sound of pouring cola by the end of the challenge.
An artificial tree decorated with red and gold decorations and fairy lights. There are various wrapped gifts underneath, a dinosaur near the top of the tree and a Pacman hidden in the branches. It's placed in an office with white walls and a blue carpet.

We ended the afternoon of fun with a traditional quiz, with rounds including Christmas movie clips, Christmas dingbats, identifying books from short extracts and general trivia. We also had a visit from some Catastronaut friends – Sarge and our cold-blooded recruit came along to enjoy the quiz with us!
Two plushies on a leather sofa, both in 'Catastronauts' uniforms. In yellow and black is Sarge with a black hat, pale skin and white hair and large moustache. In red is a dinosaur-like green lizard with sharp teeth and ridges on his head.

It was a fun afternoon, and we’re going to be carrying on the Christmas fun in January, with a trip to take part in The Crystal Maze Live Experience in London – stay tuned to find out how we get on!

The group of us doing funny poses (mainly salutes) in front of our EGX stand, wearing Catastronauts t-shirts

Our visit to EGX 2018!!!

EGX is the UK’s biggest games event; this year it was held in Birmingham from 20th – 23rd September and we were lucky enough to get the chance to show off Catastronauts there!!

Needless to say we were very excited, especially with the event falling so close to our release date (28th September; that’s tomorrow!!!). We assembled our space crew, gathered our equipment and headed off to the NEC!

The group of us doing funny poses (mainly salutes) in front of our EGX stand, wearing Catastronauts t-shirts

The event was huge and we managed to get a prime spot, near to the entrance with lots of space for our newest recruits to gather as they try out the game. And it certainly lived up to our expectations! The stall was very busy throughout the event; we started off well, with with lots of people popping by to check out the game based on Eurogamer’s recommendation in their video which was playing in the lobby. Thanks to the team for their shout out!

Lots of players enjoying Catastronauts, while many others watch/wait behind them

We saw lots of great teamwork and strategising throughout the event, along with a few minor arguments concerning who decided to shut the safe room door and leave their friend to burn to a crisp in the heat of a solar flare – but most groups managed to make it up before the end of the demo 🙂

As always, we like to give a little shoutout to some of the other awesome games which we spotted while at the event. Here are some of our favourites:
+ Double Pug Switch, a challenging platformer where you play a pug in parallel dimensions
+ Heaven’s Vault, an adventure game where you get to decipher an entire ancient language
+ Obsol33t, a game where you take on the role of a hacker who uses a wheelchair in a futuristic but inaccessible city
+ The Bradwell Conspiracy, an immersive narrative-driven puzzler where you uncover secrets as you work to escape the complex of a company who may not be all they seem (plus they were handing out awesome Stonehenge hats!!)
+ Super Mario Party – we’re all huge Mario fans and, of course, we love party games, so this game was pretty much our ideal title!

Kim posing, screaming with her arms up in the air, matching the Catastronaut on the poster behind her

We finished the event tired but very happy; we were thrilled with the awesome reception the game received! A huge thank you to everyone who stopped by to have a look or take a play, and if you didn’t get a chance to, never fear – you can try the full game yourself tomorrow on PC, PS4 and Xbox One!!

Catastronauts is blasting off on September 28th!

Catastronauts is blasting off on September 28th!

We’re delighted to announce that Catastronauts will be launching on September 28th on PlayStation 4, Steam and Xbox One! To celebrate this announcement, we’ve made a brand new trailer to give you a glimpse of the interstellar chaos, testing challenges and frantic fun!

Gather your friends and arm the torpedoes!

Catastronauts is a fast-paced 1-4 multiplayer action game in which players become a crew of intergalactic spacefarers who must work together to destroy an attacking enemy fleet, whilst frantically struggling to keep their own ship intact. Co-ordination, co-operation and decisiveness are essential to victory, as multiple tasks need to be taken care of across the vessel.

In addition to the regular occupational hazards, each level offers unique challenges and dangers to deal with including solar flares and malfunctioning extraction doors. Meanwhile a whole host of unique mechanics will keep even the most experienced crew members on their toes.

Will you and your friends save the galaxy?

Screenshot of a level in the game, with bombs, cracks and fire

Enlist now on Steam

Don’t miss out on a second! If you plan to save the galaxy on your PC, you can add Catastronauts to your wishlist right now by clicking here.

Close up shot of player putting out their fellow Catastronaut, who is on fire

Coming soon to Nintendo Switch

Switch fans will not miss out on the mayhem! Catastronauts will be released on the Nintendo eShop in the near future so that you and your friends can take on attacking invaders wherever you are! Follow Catastronauts on your favourite social media to stay up-to-date with all the latest news and developments.

Follow Catastronauts on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram

Group of people playing garden tumble tower on the patio

Summer Fun!

Like most of Europe, we here in Ely have been experiencing a long heatwave these past few months. We decided to have a barbecue at Greg’s house to make the most of the warm weather; food was bought, playlists were made and an inflatable hot tub was set up and then, in typical British fashion, it rained!!

However, we weren’t about to let a small to medium sized (well actually quite large…) thunderstorm ruin our fun!

We were lucky enough to have a couple of hours of sun first, which gave us a chance to play some garden boules and tumble tower games, get most of the barbecue food cooked (compliments to Lucy the chef!) and rescue a tired bee!

Group of people playing garden tumble tower on the patio
Some tense gameplay!
Kieran carefully feeding some sugary water to a bee from a spoon
Helping out our new friend

However, the clouds soon rolled in and the thunder and lightening began!

Group of us happily gathered under the gazebo as rain pours outside
We took shelter under the gazebo

Although the weather remained overcast for the rest of the evening, the lightening and rain did let up and the temperature stayed high, which allowed us to make the most of the hot tub.

Alice, Lauren and Berni perched at the edge of the hot tub with their legs in the water, under a grey sky
Some of us took a brief dip…
Lauren, Graeme and Greg fully in the hot tub
… while others went the full way!

Following up from our mushroom eating contest at CenterParcs, we held a raw onion eating contest which was much regretted by Greg, who underestimated the strength of raw onion taste. The night ended with dancing to some classic party songs (who doesn’t like Mr Brightside?!).

Even with the uninvited storm it was a fun evening and a great chance to socialise outside of the office. We look forward to another one next year!

GIF of Albert the Mini Doxie licking Greg's face

Canine Capers!!

Friday 22nd June was Bring Your Dog to Work Day! We didn’t need much encouragement to invite Albert, Lauren’s miniature dachshund, to work with us for the day!

Albert the Mini Doxie on Lauren's lap

Here’s what Alb got up to with us:

Albert the Mini Doxie hiding under a chair
At first, he was a little shy – it’s been a while since he’s visited!
Albert the Mini Doxie surveying the office
He eventually gathered some courage to start exploring
GIF of Albert the Mini Doxie licking Greg's face
And then, with even more courage, he decided to clean Greg’s face for him
Albert the Mini Doxie typing
Alb got to grips with using the keyboard. Apologies to any customers who received an email about bones last Friday!
GIF of Albert the Mini Doxie running away from having his photo taken
We also tried some photo posing for Catastronauts – Albert’s not a photo fan
Albert the Mini Doxie sleeping
Finally it was time for a well earned nap!

Bring Your Dog To Work Day is an annual nationwide event that raises money for charities dedicated to making a difference to the welfare of dogs. You can find out more here!

Norwich City Centre

Norwich Gaming Festival 2018

Our Catastronauts team is currently very busy bringing the game ever closer to release, but at the start of June they managed to spare a few days to head off to Norwich Gaming Festival! Norwich is fairly close by to us, so we were excited to attend a local event and get the chance to show off Catastronauts a little closer to home!

Norwich Gaming Fest is a free, family-friendly celebration of games, held annually in the city centre. It’s packed full of indie devs exhibiting playable versions of their games; there are also unique and fun activities to try out such as retro games and a board game cafe, gaming merch to buy, gaming art on display, advice on getting into the industry and much more!

Norwich City Centre
Norwich – a fine city!

We were at NGF for three days and had a really wonderful time! The atmosphere at the whole event was very relaxed, so it was great for really getting into the game with members of the public and seeing which parts they enjoyed the most. The event is also perfect for families, which meant we had loads of younger players trying out the game – it was fun to see that our 7 year old players could still quickly figure out how to lock their teammates out of the safe room when a solar flare was approaching.

Table set up with Catastronauts and free merch
Ready to welcome our newest recruits!

On the Saturday evening, we headed to Epic Studios for the NGF pub quiz! This really put our gaming knowledge to the test, with questions spanning from retro console favourites (anybody else remember Cool Spot?) right through to the latest releases. We’re all (as you would expect) pretty big gaming fans, but gaming has such a huge field of potential questions, so to avoid disappointment we set our expectations from the off with our team name, which was 💩 (yes – the actual team name was the smiling poop emoji). However, we were pleasantly surprised that we were not right at the bottom of the list! The winning teams really impressed us with their very detailed knowledge of gaming.

While at the event we also got to chat to lots of fellow indie devs and try some of their games. A couple of projects that caught our eye this time were:
+ Locomotion, an awesomely intuitive train themed puzzler with a great art style
+ Switch ‘N’ Shoot, a one-button arcade style shoot-em-up which had it’s own special and very retro arcade cabinet at the show
+ Black Friday Simulator, which felt like being on Supermarket Sweep except you are trashing things instead of collecting them (great stress relief!)
+ The Dwarves of Glistenveld, a real-time strategy with some retro inspiration and a fun sense of humour

We had a brilliant time at the event – we got lots of great feedback about the game, experienced lots of chaotic fun as we played along with visitors, and all really enjoyed ourselves.

People playing Catastronauts
Lots of chaotic fun was had!

Have you seen Catastronauts in action yet? If not, why not grab yourself a ticket for EGX, where you can find us in the Rezzed zone along with lots of other wonderful indies! And don’t forget to follow us on social media for all the latest on the game!

Catastronauts on Facebook and Twitter; wishlist the game on Steam

Inertia Game Studios on Facebook and Twitter