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Published on May 19th, 2011 | by Derek Strickland, Contributor

DBP Winner “Dust: An Elysian Tail” Coming to XBLA

The Dream Build Play contest is an annual event that gives amateur developers the chance to not only win cash prizes for their custom created XNA games, but to get their “foot in the door”, so to speak, in the world of professional game development. Winners also have the opportunity to  have their games published as an Xbox Live Arcade title as well, rising above the Xbox Indies marketplace’s cheaper $1-$5 games.

This is a huge opportunity for independent developers, and many contest finalists have gone on to create successful game series such as James Silva who is most known for the Dishwasher XBLA games–Diswasher Dead Samurai and the more recent Dishwasher Vampire Smile.

The Grand Prize of the 2009 DBP Contest was a whopping $40,000 and of course the opportunity to release their submitted game as an Xbox Live Arcade title. Dust won the highly-esteemed DBP 2009 Grand Prize and its release has been looked forward to for quite some time now.

Dust: An Elysian Tail made by the independent studio Humble Hearts features the developer’s signature anime style blended with impressive gameplay dynamics and mechanics like RPG aspects and platformer elements. The developer of this title, Dean Dodrill aka “Noogy”, has been hard at work polishing the title for release on the Xbox Live Arcade Marketplace.

Below is the description for Dust: An Elysian Tail from the official website:

Dust: An Elysian Tail is a 2D action-RPG video game created for the Xbox 360 platform, and available soon as a downloadable title. It has won the Grand Prize in Microsoft’s 2009 Dream Build Play competition.
Set in the beautiful yet mysterious world of Falana, this game chronicles protagonist Dust’s journey to liberate an oppressed village, and rediscover his past. He is aided by an ancient sword, Ahrah, and his helpful–if unreserved–sidekick Fidget.
Meticulously hand-painted and animated, this episode of Elysian Tail welcomes exploration, platforming, and above all else, mastery of a fighting system that rewards skilled gamers.
Casual and younger players will appreciate options tailored to allow them to enjoy the narrations without frustration. Seasoned players will enjoy collection, a deep combo and experience system, and increasingly challenging encounters.
Dust: An Elysian Tail is a unique experience in this era of High Definition gaming, and hearkens back to action games of old while also taking advantage of modern-day hardware.
Featuring music by Alex Brandon and HyperDuck Studios.


Many gamers, developers, and reviewers alike in the gaming world are looking forward to Dust, especially since it is said to be one of the most impressive-looking DBP contest winners out of them all. With enjoyable graphics, fast-paced hack-and-slash swordfighting all wrapped together with 2-D platformer mechanics, this game is a highly anticipated title coming soon to XBLA.

Humble Hearts’ official website details a devlog of Dust with news updates, a gallery of images and video trailers, Press Releases and Press coverage, as well as a synopsis and description of the game’s story arc and mechanics.

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For more information on Dust: An Elysian Tail and the studio that developed it, Humble Hearts, please visit the official website or Follow them on Twitter for instant updates.

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About the Author

I'm an aspiring games journalist who writes articles focused on everything from Indie Games to next-gen titles. [Twitter] @Mr_Deeke [E-Mail] derek.s(at)gamingtruth(dot)com



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