May 16, 2017
Share

Top 5 indie games to watch out for in 2017

Both big studio and indie games are becoming more awesome as time goes by.

Game production values are on an upward trend nowadays with game studios, developers, and publishers spending as much money as film studios do on mainstream movies. From mind-blowing graphics, to hiring A-list celebrities, and to marketing, game studios are willing to pay more to sell more.

However, a sizable production cost does not guarantee quality. It’s no surprise that some of the best games to date are independently produced, with low production values but high entertainment value.

It’s 2017 and digital distribution paired with social media and the mobile platform are just as important tools to distribute and market games as traditional means. Indie games thrive in this environment and without game executives watching everything that developers do, creators have more creative control and a better grasp of the quality of their work, leading to innovations in gaming that would not have happened if executives have a tighter control on the creative process. This has led to innovative game design and exciting game concepts in recent years. Now, what does 2017 have to offer?

Cuphead

Developer: Studio MDHR
Platforms: PC, Xbox One
Release Date: TBA 2017

Cuphead wins hearts through nostalgia, with its 1930s cartoon motif and light-hearted vibe, the game preview promises to be a fun trip down memory lane. Cuphead is a classic side-scrolling adventure that also accommodates two players, letting the second player play as Cuphead’s sidekick, Mugman.

The game is created by a two-man development team at Studio MDHR. The preview promises a rich story and multi-platform mayhem, where Cuphead must journey to repay his debt to the Devil. There’s tons of exciting boss battles and a world map with secrets that you have to uncover on your own.

Perception

Developer: The Deep End Games
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Release Date: TBA

It’s not surprising that the best and brightest of the game industry are thriving in independent game development teams. After all, there’s creative freedom there. The Deep End Games development team is one of those, and their upcoming game Perception is a collaborative effort between many of the developers who have worked on games like Dead Space and the Bioshock series.

Perception is a deep dive in horror game territory that plays on, well, your perceptions. The first-person narrative makes the game even more immersive, putting players behind the eyes of a young blind woman who uses echo-location to solve mysteries and puzzles in order to escape the thing (or things) that pursue her. It’s an innovative game and perhaps the first of its kind. If somebody told you they would want to make a story where the main character is blind and tell it in a visual medium like a video game, how would you even proceed? The game is just pure genius, with its revolutionary way of depicting echo-effect in a video game. It’s both haunting, eerie, unsettling, and most of all, beautiful.

Rime

Developer: Tequila Works
Platform: PS4, Switch, Xbox One, PC
Release Date: TBA

Rime is a beautiful open world game that favors exploration instead of combat. Rime is filled with adventure and puzzle-solving (and oh boy do they go well together) where you play as a young boy shipwrecked on a mysterious island. As the young boy, you must overcome the island’s challenges and unravel the mysteries of a strange curse in the island. It’s a beautiful game that you can easily get lost into, and there’s a lot of space in which you can explore and by a lot of space, we mean there might even be more than one island that you can explore within the game (as one developer let slip).

The game will be available on all platforms as they’ve announced and we can’t wait to discover what up in Rime when it’s released later this year.

Liege

Developer: Coda Games
Platforms: PC, PS4
Release Date: TBA 2017

Coda Games’s Liege features a gorgeous retro-inspired world with a modern day flair, and it’s this fusion of the then-and-now that gives it a distinct visual identity. At its core, Liege is a cross-platform, tactical, turn-based tactical JRPG. (YES!) Coda Games promises that ther no transition in and out of combat just like classic turn-based RPGs like Final Fantasy VII.  This gritty dark-fantasy adventure is an interactive epic about ordinary people like us, placed in fantastic, larger-than-life circumstances. In equally vague terms, it’s a game about family, power, love, death, and other sorts of equally heavy things.

Below

Developer: Capybara Games
Platform: PC, Xbox One
Release Date: TBA 2017

Below places you in a dark underground cavern where you must navigate practically blind as you try to survive and uncover the truth about the place you found yourself in. Capybara Games introduces us a to an exciting (or frustrating, depending on how it performs) top-down adventure game featuring procedurally-generated environments filled with enemies that players must hack and slash their way through. The game promises to be difficult but surmountable like Bloodborne, or as they call it “brutal but fair”. We mentioned frustrating earlier—why? Because in the game, once you die, you stay dead—and you have to start all over again. The randomness of the environment and the villains within really puts a viciousness to replay value, adding a layer of tension on the gaming experience that will put gamers at the edge of their seats. Do you have what it takes?