Welcome to Indie Spotlight!
I spent this past weekend enjoying the thirteenth annual MAGFest in National Harbor, MD.
Besides catching up with college friends, invading the arcade machines and grabbing some sweet nerd loot in the dealers’ room, I made a dedicated round through the MAGFest Indie Videogame Showcase, and today I’m here with a handy list of the great new and upcoming games of the indie world!
(I certainly didn’t catch every single one, for the showcase was huge this year! But here is every title I managed to test play, watch or chat about with the developers. They are alphabetized for convenience!)
20XX (BatteryStaple Games)
Originally named Echoes of Eridu, this is a Mega Man-inspired action platformer with unique characters and multiplayer co-op. I got on the list back in its kickstarter days, so I can’t wait for this one to be ready. Coming to PC in the next few months!
This is a super fast shmup (shoot ’em up) where you pilot a fighter jet and must survive waves of baddies. The catch is, you can either blast your engines or your fire your lazers but not both. You’ll need split-second decision making and quick reflexes to dodge and destroy when appropriate. Follow the link and help it go through Steam Greenlight!
Clash Cup Turbo (Root 76)
Think of the back and forth mayhem of air hockey, add environmental amplifiers and add in cartoon robot-like people with paddles and you’ve got yourself some crazy multiplayer action! This is a party game you need to add to your list.
Default Dan (Kikiwik Games)
Everything in this game is the exact opposite of Super Mario. Grab a coin and you die. Jump on spikes and you bounce. See how well you can make your brain forget everything you’ve learned since the dawn of gaming!
Dr. SpaceZoo (SmashRiot)
Here’s a quirky take on a Bullet Hell game. Fend off the lethal efforts of an evil AI and save exotic animals before he explodes the station! Give it a thumbs up on Steam Greenlight!
This title has been showcased at MAGFest in the past, and each time it comes back it has more to offer. Dragons have taken over the world and it’s up to you to put a stop to it. It’s an all hand-painted roguelike runner game that will keep you fighting for a new high score.
Exposure (The Sheep’s Meow)
If you love artistic abstraction like I do, here’s one to try. You are something like a tadpole traveling through an abstract world, using environmental camoflauge to hide from predators. A very creative and pleasing sight to behold!
Extreme Exorcism (Golden Ruby Games)
You play as a medium tasked with exploring and cleansing a haunted house of ghosts with a whole slew of guns and weapons. Every action you take will affect what has happened and will happen. Can you survive!?
Hastilude (Ghost Crab Games)
This is the modern day ‘Joust’ we have been waiting for. Wage combat as knights riding jetpack mounts and conquer your foes!
Magnetic by Nature (Team Tripleslash)
Now here’s a cool physics puzzle game, much like the legendary Lode Runner. You harness magnetic powers (attract and repel) and make your escape by moving objects, unlocking paths and staying alive!
Neon Krieger Yamato (Lionplex)
This is a stylish retro fighting platformer, where you and a few friends control armored / robotic warriors with swords, rifles and teleporting to infiltrate an enemy armada. Slice, snipe and fight your way to victory!
Particle Mace (Andy Wallace)
Use the momentum of your ship to swing particles around like a flail and show your friends who rules the skies! Officially live and on sale now!
Pixel Noir (SWDTech Games)
Here’s one for the gritty sleuth in you. This is an 8-bit style adventure RPG where you play as a private detective solving mysterious cases in a dark city. You have heightened senses that can pick out oddities and persuade those to tell you what you need to know. Very unique and even more intriguing!
Redshift Blueshift (01010111)
Here’s a nifty spaceship version of Pong! You and a friend take turns bouncing an orb around the screen while blowing up debris, firing missiles and doing what it takes to make them miss first. Playable online via the link!
Shutshimi (Neon Deity Games)
I couldn’t help but have a grin on my face the whole time playing this. You are a fish with beefy arms (like Trogdor), fighting through wave after wave of things that want you dead. Every level and chance to upgrade lasts 10 seconds because, well, you’re a fish. Available on Xbox 360 and greenlit on Steam!
Sportsball (Too DX)
“Live by the Bird, Die by the Bird.” This game puts up to four players on the field Joust style, with the option of making teams for more exciting play. Your job is to strike your foes, turn them into balls and knock ’em into the net! Available now on Wii U!
That Rock Paper Scissors Game! (Philosoplay)
Here’s RPS in a free-for-all arena! Three people try to catch their target while avoiding their weakness. Random powerups and traps are randomly spawned to spice things up. Get the most points to win!
This is a beautiful puzzle platformer where the direction you face determines the season around you. Platforms and keys may only appear in one of the seasons, so it’s up to you to traverse the world and survive!
Too Many Snakes (WhaleFood Games)
This game is straight-up adorable! You play as a mouse with psychic powers, and you must use them to get those darn snakes out of your way! A very simple but challenging puzzler that will keep you going for hours. Available now on iOS!
Trace Vector (Vexel Games)
Here’s a high speed action arcade game where you quickly select travel paths to avoid traps, catch speed boosts and max out your score! As the name suggests, it’s all old-school vector designs that take you on a wild journey. Available now!
Treasure Adventure World (Robit Studios)
I say the more “MetroidVania” games the better! This is an adventure game telling the tale of a girl trying to discover her forgotten past with the help of a trusty parrot. You’re almost entirely free to explore and progress the story as you see fit!
Tumbleweed Express (The Dirigiballers)
This was the one game I test played at last year’s MAGFest, and it has come a long way! Take charge of your own train and protect it from a monopolized railway system. Manage an engineering crew, upgrade your cars with weapons and defense, and fend off zeppelins and raiding vehicles! Click the link to push it through Steam Greenlight!
Vagante (Nuke Nine)
And 8-bit Roguelike RPG? Procedurally generated levels and local multiplayer? Yes please! Challenge yourself through the caves and see what you find… Available now!
Vidar (Dean Razavi)
I love it when games try to do the opposite of the norm. This is an RPG puzzler where everyone dies. It’s up to you to discover how and why. It involves randomized storytelling and puzzles. No two playthroughs are the same!