There are Marios, and there are Zeldas, and then there are the little games for 3DS and Wii U — the indies that might not sell systems, but will help bolster libraries and offer up experiences you can't get elsewhere.
Nintendo today released a list of all the indie games they'll be showing off at the IndieCade festival in Los Angeles this weekend, and it's an impressive library, full of some games that might sound familiar, and many you probably haven't heard of. Some are already out on other platforms; others are built just for Nintendo. Let's go through them all.
(Note: the block-quoted text comes straight from Nintendo.)
1,001 Spikes by Nicalis: Using 1,001 lives to clear more than 100 levels, players must overcome devious traps and cleverly designed levels that will test their skills, reflexes and patience.
Armillo by Fuzzy Wuzzy Games: Armillo is a unique platforming game with a sci-fi theme that stars an armadillo. Traverse spherical worlds in a mix of platforming battles and speed to defeat the robotic Darkbots.
Knytt Underground by Ripstone: Knytt Underground is the latest entry in the acclaimed Knytt series of thrilling platform games, focusing on precise platforming with zen-like game play.
Pier Solar and the Great Architects by WaterMelon Co.: Pier Solar and the Great Architects is an original, classic role-playing game with an epic story, more than 50 hours of game play and a massive world to explore.
Q.U.B.E. by Toxic Games: The critically acclaimed Q.U.B.E. is a first-person game that presents the player with a series of brain-teasing puzzles. Written by three students, the game asks players to use high-tech gloves to manipulate different types of cubes in the environment.
Scram Kitty and his Buddy on Rails by Dakko Dakko: With frenetic game play viewed from above and a striking blend of 2D and 3D graphics, Scram Kitty and his Buddy on Rails is a shoot-'em-up platform game with a character all its own.
Shovel Knight by Yacht Club Games: A mashup of old and new, Shovel Knight is a classic platformer with awesome game play, memorable characters and an 8-bit retro aesthetic.
Tengami by Nyamyam: Tengami is a gorgeous, atmospheric point-and-touch adventure game set inside a Japanese pop-up book.
Teslagrad by Rain AS: A beautiful side-scrolling platformer set in a steampunk world, Teslagrad features open-world game play and a hand-drawn art style.
Unepic by EnjoyUp Games: The award-winning Unepic follows unlikely hero Daniel as he journeys through a giant castle to destroy an evil force. The game blends platforming and role-playing game play in one adventurous package.
Wooden Sen'SeY by Neko Entertainment: Wooden Sen'SeY is an action-platformer set in a unique "Japanese Steam Rock" universe with tons of humour and multiple styles of game play.
Grinsia by Nicalis: Three treasure hunters search for ancient ruins in Grinsia. The traditional role-playing game is designed using classic, 16-bit pixel art.
Jett Rocket II: The Wrath of Taikai by Shin'en: Jett Rocket II: The Wrath of Taikai, a colourful, action-filled game, is from the creators of Nano Assault Neo and Art of Balance.
Retro City Rampage by Vblank Entertainment: Developed almost entirely by one person, Retro City Rampage is an 8-bit, open-world game that parodies video games and pop culture from the '80s and '90s.
Shantae and the Pirate's Curse by WayForward: The belly-dancing, hair-whipping Shantae is back in another beautifully crafted side-scrolling action/adventure game. Shantae must team up with her archnemesis Risky Boots in order to save her land from a curse. Master the use of Pirate Gear, topple epic bosses and save Sequin Land!
Siesta Fiesta by Mojo Bones: Combining various aspects of classic arcade game play, Siesta Fiesta is a vibrant action game that lets players bounce, boost and rebound across the island of Fiestaville.
Treasurenauts by Renegade Kid: Play as the famed Treasurenauts, as they try to collect enough treasure to pay for their escape from a perilous, uncharted island. Experience the single-player adventure or team-up with a friend for a cooperative multiplayer expedition.