When people talk about indie games and crowdfunding campaigns there are a relative handful of games that get enough traction to get actual news coverage. But if you take a good look at Steam Greenlight or some forum that actually pays constant attention to the scene, you eventually see that for every Mighty no. 9 or Nuclear Throne (the new title for Wasteland Kings), there are a few other awesome games barely getting noticed. I’ve decided to devote this post to a few of them, ones that I’ve probably mentioned in bullets before. There are a lot of others, but these are the ones I most want to play and that look the most high-quality to me.
As of this writing, Kromaia is only just beginning its Kickstarter and Steam Greenlight campaigns but it’s already one of my most anticipated indie games. Looking at the extremely well-done trailer gives off the impression this game is kind of like the original Star Fox meets Rez, on crack.
The description is honestly not all that specific because the concept is pretty unusual. From what I gather though, this game is supposed to be very nonlinear in terms of the level designs as well as how players progress through them. Depending on what stretch goals the game hits Kromaia might also have a procedurally-generated world. Just the thought of that brings up ideas of endless, high-concept playability.
The most striking thing about Liege to me is that it takes the visual perspective of 16-bit RPGs, but the 2D art is rendered at much more modern resolutions, giving an idea of what those old games might look like if they took full advantage of today’s hardware but otherwise remained the same. The trailer is so good I’ve actually watched it multiple times — it gives a sense the developers are trying to use those classic visual perspectives to tell a deeper, more mature story.
The story itself seems pretty ambitious too and I have no ideas if these guys can deliver on it but I’d at least like to see them try. The combat though seems to be its own beast — a very tactics-oriented system built on very high lethality. Liege also seems to be planned for a whole lot of platforms, including mobile.
I didn’t find out about A.N.N.E until it showed up in a fan-made montage of upcoming Nintendo eShop games (it’s also coming to PC, Mac, and Linux so far), which shows how under-the-radar this game is. A.N.N.E is indeed another pixilated indie game, but it happens to look like a smart fusion of two game types that might actually work really well.
The Kickstarter page calls it “Gradius meets Metroidvania” which sounds extremely interesting to me. Looking at the trailer (which looks very action-packed), on foot the game plays like a sidescrolling action shooter with some exploration, but you can hop into a ship and all of a sudden it becomes a shmup. The idea of playing a sidescrolling shooter where I’m in a space battle, I land on a giant ship, then run around inside is definitely something I want to play.
In between all the explosions Broforce looks like a callback to Contra and classic action movie heroes in general, but with a lot more action and destructibility. It’s actually gotten a bit of attention from PC-oriented websites but I still see it as a bit in the background.
It seems like the devs behind this game really nailed the quickness and tactility of the gunfire and explosions that made older sidescrolling shooters great. This, combined with multiplayer, the variety of play styles, and Broforce’s sense of humor might make it an incredibly fun game.
Ghost Song is definitely one of my most anticipated indie games. Basically, it looks like Super Metroid with today’s graphics, and I mean that in all the best ways.
What caught my eye about this game is its fantastic 2D art design and animation. The videos make it seem like it’s going to have the same slick visual design, responsive action gameplay, and sense of challenge that made Super Metroid and 2D action games like it great.
Reading descriptions and interviews about Hyper Light Drifter pegs it as taking inspiration specifically from A Link to the Past and Diablo. It’s apparently a game where you explore the world and complete dungeons to unlock new areas, but you also fight mobs of enemies to obtain loot. If they can pull it off with that visual style then I think this could be an incredible game.
What really caught me from the trailer though was how well-developed the gameplay systems seemed. You can already pick out various mechanics like shields, dashing, teleporting, and some kind of jump that all look really fun to use. The situations shown in the trailer also look pretty challenging.
- Oh and this game kinda looks cool too. http://t.co/ZEV823iF9k
- And this game. http://killscreendaily.com/articles/reviews/868-hack-plays-long-game/
- Man there are a lot of Steam Early Access games I’m interested in now. Add Audiosurf 2 to that pile: http://t.co/DhlxAYW4Jf
- Gamasutra: Dan Taylor’s Blog – Ten Principles of Good Level Design (Part 1) feedly.com/k/1aL3NFv
- I don’t think you can doubt Super Mario 3D World after these videos. http://t.co/w1AHlgKs5k
- And like clockwork Ubisoft delays the PC version of Assassin’s Creed. http://t.co/cJiBqBAdx9
- So a tablet version of FTL is finally in the works – bit.ly/1fXimtu