Indie games' big names at the Notgames Fest

Setting up stall alongside the boom and bluster of the Gamescom expo in Cologne is the Notgames Fest - a playable exhibition exploring games that abandon notions of competition, goals, winning or losing.

Curating the Notgames Fest is Tale of Tales, Belgian creator of The Path and The Graveyard, both nominees at the prestigious Independent Games Festival.

Amnesia: The Dark Descent is the exhibit's standout, at least in terms of fame and fortune. It's a tightly constructed horror that took three awards at the 2010 IGF, multiple end-of-year accolades from gaming websites, and has so far sold more than 350,000 copies across PC, Mac and Linux.

Trauma is another IGF luminary and a brand new addition to the Steam Network download store. Players navigate photographic memories, and a young woman comes to terms with the events that hospitalized her.

Dear Esther came to prominence as a free Half-Life 2 spin-off absolutely drenched in atmostpherics - no guns and aliens here, replaced as they are by tragedy and heartbreak.

Joining them will be Dinner Date, as experienced by lonely office drone Julian Luxemburg as he waits (and waits) for his date to turn up.

Then there's the influential Ceremony of Innocence, a 1997 project backed by Peter Gabriel and starring Paul McGann, Isabella Rossellini and Ben Kingsley.

Six more titles round out the thirteen-strong line-up, which will be on display at the Köln International School of Design, August 15-16 - ten minutes' ride from Gamescom's Kölnmesse location.

Notgames Fest, Ubierring 40, Cologne, Germany: notgames.colognegamelab.com
Free entry. August 15, 11am - 9pm. August 16, 11am-late.

Amnesia (PC, Mac, Linux) amnesiagame.com
Dinner Date (PC) thestoutgames.com/:DinnerDate
Dear Esther (PC Mac) dear-esther.com
TRAUMA (PC Mac Linux) traumagame.com
Strange Rain (iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch) opertoon.com
The Path (PC Mac iPhone), The Graveyard (PC Mac), Endless Forest (online) tale-of-tales.com
The Lake (iPhone, iPod Touch) maybeitsthelighting.com/the-lake
Kairo (PC, Mac) kairo.lockeddoorpuzzle.com
Ceremony of Innocence (PC, Mac) alexmayhew.com/?page_id=248
Flight of the Fireflies by Woolly Robot (iPad) twitter.com/woollyrobot
Window Cleaner (Installation) wesww.com/art

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