As previously established, today is the day all gaming websites that don’t hate their readers, their country, their God, post as much as they can about unknown indie games in penance for all that triple-A blah that occupies our lives. So read on for another 10 games you’ve never heard of before, but will be so glad you did.
Once again, these are not endorsements of these games, mostly because most of them aren’t out yet. But these are games that caught my eye when emailed in, and certainly deserve a place on your Steam wishlist.
Developer: GoldFire Studios
I never knew how much I wanted a cross between Firewatch and The Long Dark until I watched the trailer for Arctic Awakening. A first-person narrative adventure, it’s set following a plane crash in the Arctic, where you’re accompanied only by a seemingly useless hovering AI drone thing. You’re looking for your missing co-pilot, and a way to get home again, but something very strange is going on in those parts.
Developer: 1 Simple Game
Top-down frantic-action roguelites are not few nor far-between, but combining all that violence with bright, cheerful colours and silly fun sure is. I’m Not Jelly is just so vibrant! It makes me want to wallop those health bars down all the more. Plus the trailer boasts some splendid cartoon intros, although, and I don’t want to offend anyone here, they sure look like jelly.
If you request access on Steam, you can get access to an early build right now.
Developer: Tomasz “THdev” Hałajko
Don’t be fooled by the YouTube still up there, this isn’t a hidden object mobile game. In fact, it’s a damned gorgeous-looking third-person adventure, that looks as though it were set in a 3D Proteus. This is described as a “stealth game,” although the trailer doesn’t show much of that. But I love the look of those magic arrows, and apparently as you play you’ll constantly improve your bow.
Developer: Shweep Games
A 2D survival horror, the machine that BREATHES (as the game unfortunately styles its name) takes inspiration from both Resident Evil and System Shock, then presents things through a glitchy pixelly world in which running away will be far more effective than confrontation. I’m intrigued by the scratchiness of this, combined with its puzzles, and a game description that ends, “and exist.”
Developer: Digitality Games
If I gave you fifteen guesses what Voltair: The Vegan Vampire was about, it would be your too-late sixteenth guess where you came up with “action farming roguelike.”
Voltaire is Dracula’s lastborn, and presumably his greatest disappointment, as he gives up human flesh for…plant flesh. So you farm during the day (presumably with a thick hood), but at night must fight off your dad’s minions who want to see your plant-based lifestyle ruined.
As the name suggests, PaperKlay is a game made out of paper and clay. Cardboard 3D levels can be rotated to adapt how they’re played, as you run about a little clay chicken. The whole thing looks absolutely adorable.
Out: Late 2022
Poor Mushi the mushroom is lost, and also extremely cute, which leaves us with no choice but to attempt to save him. This is an open-world platformer, aiming for a cosy, wholesome vibe, and all the creation of a lone developer. That gliding looks so lovely and serene, I want to be that little mushroom right now.
Developer: The Psychiartist
At quite the other end of the wholesome spectrum comes Resuffer, a game that frankly looks terrifying. You play a cute bunny rabbit who is just desperately trying to get the fuck away from some awful, twisted monsters, trapped in mazes of obstacles, compelled to always run. It’s an auto-runner, see. But with the sinister tones of Thumper, and man-alive, it looks so creepy. Can’t wait.
Developer: Anthropic Studios
You know how you can’t go through a door unless your fur is the same colour, right? Well, Way Of Rhea is a puzzle game about exactly that experience. The 2D cartoon game is aiming to offer tough puzzles, but in a welcoming way, letting players easily undo mistakes.
One of my favourite silly things is when media confuses the author of a work with the star of the work. All those adaptations of The Time Machine that cast H. G. Wells himself as the man who to the future make me delighted. Here, in Verne: The Shape Of Fantasy, somehow Jules is joining Captain Nemo on board to Nautilus, and they’re off to find Atlantis! Yes!
The game itself looks intriguing, a 2D adventure style, but with some sort of time-rewinding mechanic, and it’s straight on my wishlist.