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Games / Geek Corner

Meet Two Indian 15 Year Olds Making, Alter Army, An Impressive Indie Action Game

Meet Two Indian 15 Year Olds Making, Alter Army, An Impressive Indie Action Game

Vague Pixels is a Indian indie game studio made up by two 15 year old school friends Mridul Pancholi and Mridul Bansal. 

About Vague Pixels

Vague Pixels was founded in 2016 by two school friends, Mridul Pancholi and Mridul Bansal (yep, quite the coincidence, sharing the same first name), when they were in 10th grade. They teamed up to develop a game which Mridul Pancholi had thought of. With not much experience they started working on their first game “Alter Army” which was just to practice coordination and skills so they can work on a bigger project. Turns out, Alter Army became a big game which got Greenlit, funded and was also a nominee in Upcoming Game of the Year in India’s biggest Game Developer’s Conference (NGDC).

Before Vague Pixels, Mridul Pancholi was already making games as a hobby and was frequently participating in Game Jams. Mridul Bansal, was a tech geek and was learning things about game development. So both of them were not experienced in commercial aspects of games. When they started working on the game they had to face a lot of tough situations like the school, parents, and other aspects of day to day life as a teenager. Somehow they managed to work on it despite of all the obstacles. Alter Army has literally changed their lives. They met a lot of amazing people and learnt ton of awesome things. It’s been around a year and a half since they started work on Alter Army and though there are always low points and big obstacles, everything is slowly working out and they will be launching it soon.

About Alter Army

Alter Army is a fast paced action platformer. The universe is dying and you are one of the last few trying to take control of the last resources. Fight your way through hundreds of monsters and bosses in different biomes using your weaponry and collect special crystals to just to live a few more decades.

Alter army was a game started just to get into practice of making games as we both were really not doing anything those days. We thought of finishing up this game in just a month. After one month we were not satisfied and a little bit disappointed that we weren’t able to complete it and the things we made were not looking good. So we started to fix the art and mechanics and removed any time constraints. Slowly the scope of the game started to expand and we started to post the footage of it online. After some appreciations from folks on social media, we decided to get the game Greenlit on Steam.

At first the results were not looking good, we had no chances of getting Greenlight, and when Steam started to announce the games that were Greenlit, Alter Army wasn’t a part of the games that Steam approved. We got very discouraged by this. I, Mridul Pancholi, remember sleeping at 12AM  thinking of working on something else when suddenly at midnight the phone rang up. It was Mridul Bansal and he told me that the game got Greenlit at the very last moment. I remember how I was not able to sleep till like 5 am, I was so overwhelmed by our first achievement that I wasn’t able to think anything else.

After that, Game Dev friends of ours announced a Game Jam that was probably the first one in the Northern India, it was in another city. We were never part of something like this, so somehow we reached there and that was one amazing experience of our lives, we met a lot of amazing people, other game developers, designers, artists and much more amazing people. Unfortunately we weren’t able to win and those who won were offered support in terms of funding, PR, design and other stuff.

A few months after that game jam, our machines broke and a lot of time was wasted because of this. We were again stressed about the game, at that very moment when we were lying with computer parts all around us dismantled, we got a message from the friend who helped organize that Game Jam and he offered us help for the game. After some thought and few more talks about the stuff they would be giving help in, we signed a contract and got funded. This allowed us to go to our first conference, NGDC, in which we were the nominees for upcoming game of the year, which in turn allowed us to get sound design and music for the game. Currently Alter Army’s scope has been completely changed, we’ve changed a lot of base mechanics, made the movement fluid and added more unique areas and the progress is looking great. Hopefully, we will be launching soon enough.


Choose one the four characters with distinctive abilities that suit your style.
Journey through 6 different biomes containing 6 levels each collecting all the crystals and destroying everything that comes in your way.
Fight through a ton of monsters with unique abilities ranging from explosive monsters to giants that will destroy you if you are not quick enough.
Alter army has pixelated graphics with retro dynamic/adaptive music system to suit the situation the player is in.
Kill the monsters creatively, Don’t let them hit you and destroy the levels as much as you can and get a grade at the end of each biome and at the end of the game.

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