We had a ton of major announcements, new game reveals and trailers over the past few days, from Summer Games Fest to Xbox and Bethesda’s Showcase and everything in-between. Amongst all of those presentations, a host of great looking indies got a piece of the spotlight, though perhaps some of these were lost amongst the shuffle of endless trailers and press releases. With that in mind, let’s focus on a few indie titles that you should be following very closely.
Agent 64: Spies Never Die
Those of you with fond memories of Goldeneye 007 and can’t be bothered waiting for someone (anyone!) to re-release it on modern hardware would do well to keep a close eye on Agent 64: Spies Never Die. The early access phase of the retro FPS promises an episodic release schedule of story missions, leading to a final release of an entire campaign, varying objectives and difficulty modes plus plenty more.
Puzzle platformer American Arcadia takes you to a time not unlike the fantastic movie The Truman Show, where citizens live in a vast utopian metropolis where they are completely unaware that their lives are an elaborate reality show watched by millions in the real world. There’s no release date as yet, but expect plenty of puzzle solving and platforming across a 70s retro-inspired environment.
What happens when you combine the stylish run-and-gun gameplay of Doom with a foot? Okay, maybe not the best explanation, but it gets the point of Anger Foot across. Developed by Free Lives, it’s an FPS that puts a heavy focus on cartoon styles and putting the boot into your enemies and is set to release in 2023.
Ever fantasised about owning your own arcade? Arcade Paradise aims to bring that 90s-tinged dream to life, though it’s going to take a lot of work transforming an old laundromat into the video game heaven of your dreams. Earn a living cleaning clothes and purchase all the arcade cabinets and equipment you need when Arcade Paradise drops on PC later this year.
Coffee Talk Episode 2: Hibiscus & Butterfly
The sequel to Coffee Talk, developed by Toge Productions out of Indonesia, Coffee Talk Episode 2: Hibiscus & Butterfly continues your chillout coffee shop ownership where the only tasks are making the best brews in town and making friends with all manner of customers, human or otherwise. The original brought all the warm fuzzies and no doubt this follow-up will provide plenty of the same when it drops in 2023.
Set within the same world of Golf Club Wasteland, the Great Ecological Catastrophe has left the planet in ruins. Returning from Mars to recover what they can, the remaining humans discover a young boy amongst the rubble and try to detain him. As the titular cub, you’ll be parkouring all around what remains in a bid to escape capture through a world inspired by some of the hardnosed platformers of the 90s. Expect The Cub to launch on all major platforms in the not too distant future, hopefully.
El Paso, Elsewhere
Remember Max Payne? Of course you do, which is why El Paso, Elsewhere should instantly grab your attention. Releasing in 2023, the neo-noir shooter brings back the epic slow-motion dives and mixes it together with a heavy dose of the supernatural as a tiny motel in the middle of nowhere suddenly gains a whole bunch of new stories, all underground.
Speaking of rhythm games, Melatonin takes a dreamy, wonderous approach to the concept of keeping up with the beat. Various animations and sound cues clue you in on what’s coming as you progress through various dream-like states, be it shopping or food, as you uncover the life of the lead character. Melatonin launches September 16 for Switch and PC (a good week for rhythm fans!)
If rhythm action games are your thing, you can’t possibly go past Metal: Hellsinger, where you will blast your way to the beat of metal heavy tracks through devilish creatures, increasing your multiplayer to send the music soaring. It’s incredibly addictive and glorious in motion, and it isn’t that far away, launching on Xbox, PS4/5 and PC September 15.
The Plucky Squire
Brisbane studio All Possible Futures dropped a big reveal of its upcoming release, The Plucky Squire, during the Devolver Digital show, making a lasting impression in the process. Think The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds and the ability to shift from flat 2D to all-out 3D platformer, along with plenty of other retro influences. 2023 can’t come soon enough.
For something a little on the dark side there’s Signalis, a survival horror story set in a dystopian future where you play as Elster, a Replika (aka a humanoid android) that lives amongst the remaining humans who colonise the solar system. Having awoken to discover herself stranded on an unknown planet, Elster must seek out answers and avoid endless horrors that await her in the dark. Signalis releases on Xbox, PS4, Switch and PC October 27 and will be added to Xbox Game Pass on launch.
Tony Hawk may continue to have the skateboarding video game crown, but Skate Story is willing to up the ante when it launches in 2023. As a demon of the Underworld, you must flip and grind your way through the surreal Emptylands to rescue forgotten souls and beat the demon at his own game.
Annapurna Interactive know a good indie game when they see one, and Thirsty Suitors is another in their acclaimed line-up of titles that’s set to release hopefully very soon. Combining turn-based combat, skateboarding and a colourful tale of expression and relationships, Thirsty Suitors holds plenty of unique appeal and a healthy dose of South Asian inspiration.
Did any other titles catch your eye recently? Let us know about them in the comments down below.