a FREE and LEGAL compilation of over 300 games by over 100 developers! It was put together at the last minute for entry into the 2012 Independent Games Festival Main Competition.
A Pirate Kart is a game compilation made in a hurry. Jeremy Penner came up with the idea for the first Pirate Kart as a way for the Glorious Trainwrecks community to collaborate on something for TIGSource's "B-Game" competition. To galvanize the community, he set an absurd goal: make 100 games in 48 hours and package them as a single entry in the competition.
The IGF Pirate Kart is now the fourth Pirate Kart. Due to it being so very last-minute, instead of just games created specifically for the kart, it also contains many pre-existing games that were not "big" enough, "polished" enough, or for whatever other reason were not worth paying the IGF entry fee for.
There are many of us and we all have our own motivations, but here are some of my favorite quotes on the subject from Pirate Kart contributors (much of this was taken from comments on DIYGamer):
"i entered for the prizes DIBS ON THE TROPHY" - Daphny
"People often forget that making a game is a game too. Events like the IGF usually center on celebrating the winners without making enough of an effort to encourage more people to start playing. Regardless of how good you are at the game of making a game, it's still incredibly fun!" - Snapman
"The pirate kart represents a different side of indie games, one that I think is far more interesting -- and one that's maybe not so easily represented in the IGF. That's why I'd love to see a pirate kart enter the festival. Not as a protest, but with complete sincerity." - Terry Cavanagh
"I really appreciate the Pirate Kart as an expression of game-making (and IGF entering) passion by hundreds of indie developers - developers who would like to join the IGF, but for all sorts of reasons are not able to, or are against some of the competition's rules. I love the fact the Pirate Kart is open to everything and everybody and it combines the all those strange, different games into a strong voice of no-rules, no-holds-barred indieness that wants to be heard and appreciated." - Igor Hardy
"The thing I loved with the Pirate Kart is the eclectic mix of talents all coming together to produce something as a community. I found the fact that a complete amateur hobbyist like myself could submit something along known awesome indie types to be massively inspiring." - Aaron
"In a form with as much untapped creative potential as the videogame, we think, a plethora of small, new ideas is more innovative than a single idea polished for months, and that the inclusion of authors from all walks of life is more valuable than the celebritizing of the few." - Anna Anthropy
"The Pirate Kart allows me to submit what I'm most proud of, and not feel ashamed of doing so." - Andy Moore
"These are games that only exist from independence; bundled in a way requiring independence; in a time scale only achievable through independence. That's pretty cool, no?" - Jonathan Whiting
"How else are we supposed to widen the landscape of games than by widening the landscape of people who can and will make games." - Rob Fearon
"I like how the Pirate Kart is celebrating the smaller crazy creative indie games that would probably never make it to IGF on their own." - Jake Birkett
"I think the Pirate Kart is more than a collection of small indie games. It's the strength and creativity of 100+ indie developers. That's something only indie developers could make." - Leonardo Millan
"last night it just clicked for me. Why the hell shouldn't I take this opportunity? What's the worst that could come of it? The answers to those questions were 'no good reason not to' and 'no harm at all'." - David S. Gallant
"What I really appreciate is the inclusiveness of the Pirate Kart. At a time of the year when indie competitiveness and namecalling is perhaps its most and when devs talk about entering 'the $95 lottery', it's nice for Mike and everyone invovled to front the bill for an anything-goes, all-inclusive, feel-good entry." - kenny b
"These are the games that a $95 fee and judging system keeps away from your awards show. They may be ugly, they may be foulmouthed, but they're every bit as important as the ones you give awards to every year. We're indies, too." - Guilherme Tows
See this comments thread on DIYGamer for more!
Q: How do I use a .torrent file?
A: You can install BitComet or another bittorrent client and use that to open a .torrent file and begin the download. If for some reason you can't use bitTorrent to get the Kart, use one of the direct download options.
Q: Does it run on Mac/Linux?
A: The launcher and most of the included games are for Windows only, sorry.
Q: How do I install/run it?
A: Extract the zip, then run "2012 IGF PIRATE KART.exe"
Q: Avast virus scanner is detecting malware!
A: These are false positives. The games are safe to play!
Q: I still have questions!
A: You can contact Mike Meyer via Twitter(@ExciteMike) or email mike at meyermike dot com. I'll try to help you out!
Pirate Kart Kontributors - Without games there'd be no Pirate Kart!
Rocketcat Games - Provided the $95 for the entry fee!
Mag Roader - Saved me from pulling my hair out trying to get a launcher together in time!
Anna Anthropy, Glen Forrester, Damian Hernaez, A. McClure, Noyb, Jeremy Penner, and Gary S - Rapid help with splitting up some of the work, troubleshooting technical problems, and getting the word out. You guys made this go way more smoothly than it could have!
The IGF Judges - For having the patience to download over a gigabyte and try the games in this weird compilation that we're not sure should even be allowed :)