Lately, Major Studios have consistently disappointed us with the quality of its games. Dry IPs are being milked to nothing with little creativity to support them—just repetitive classics taking the form of another AAA-priced game.
Some major disastrous releases like FIFA on PC and Gotham Knights are leading many fans to believe that major studios don’t have it in them anymore. Unfortunately, the spark and innovation that gave flight to these glorious studios have died out.
However, there is still hope for gamers because what big studios fail to provide, smaller indie studios have in excess. Many minor indie studios have recently come out with great innovative games far better than any AAA game in recent history.
We shall review the top ten indie games we thought you should know about. These are all from the recent past with a lot to show for themselves. Let’s start.
The Past Within
The first indie game that we will look at is The Past Within. It was released on February 21st, 2022, by Rusty Lake. It is a multiplayer game that focuses on teamplay and synergy to fix the tides of time. Additionally, it is one of the most innovative games I have played. A player must decipher the past while the other uses the future. Both of them ultimately work together to progress through the game’s story. What is even more fun is that it is available on almost every platform.
If you are a season survival game enthusiast, this name is nothing new to you. Valheim was and still is one of the most popular survival indie games on steam because of how simplistic yet innovative its story and implementation are. It has even inspired many Minecraft mod packs.
The player has to earn his way to Valhalla by defeating many bosses in this indie title made by Iron Gate Studios. It has one of the best ratings of any indie game on steam. Furthermore, the studio has been working on a smoother multiplayer version, which will be released sometime soon.
Sifu is truly a hidden gem in a coal mine. It is one of the best indie titles of the decade because of how great its story and mechanics are. It was developed by Sloclap and released on February 6th, 2022. You play as a villain, killing people and fulfilling the game’s story. The point to note is how it works in harmony with all its elements.
This game is one of the shining examples of how bad the major studios have gotten. Sifu is an excellent game because of its story and mechanics. Given how excellent the idea is with proper implementation, I think we can safely expect a lot from this studio in the future.
Risk of Rain 2: Survivors of the Void
The original Risk of Rain is considered an indie classic because of how original and fun the game idea was for its time. Its sequel is not far off from the original one, either. It was developed by Hopoo Games and released in March of this year.
Risk of Rain 2 adds many more enemies and two new survivors to the game. This game is more along the e lines of an expansion rather than a new game completely. Along with new enemies, this game also adds many new items to introduce versatility to the game’s playstyle.
Session: Skate Sim
Of course, not all indie games have to be functional, fantasy worlds filled with monsters and weapons. Like in our case, the next indie game on this is Session: Skate Simulator, a sports game. Crea-ture studios Inc developed it.
Skate Simulator may not be your cup of tea, but it is on this list because it has one of the highest steam ratings of any sports game released in recent history. This game is an example of what the sports genre can be rather than a FIFA game that refuses to startup.
Returning to the roleplaying adventure game genre, we are going to look at Citizen Sleeper. Fellow Traveller published citizen Sleeper in May of 2022. It is a game about escaping your past and living in the moment. You will play as an escaped worker, washed up on the edge of an interstellar society where rules are non-existent. You must get through by choosing the correct friends and making the right choices to progress in the game positively.
Rogue Legacy 2
Rogue Legacy 2 is a 2-D platformer game released as the sequel to 2013’s Rogue Legacy. It has one of the highest ratings of platformer games not only on steam but from every critic as well. It was developed and published by Cellar Door Games.
The game came out in 2020, but it was recently completed and released in April 2022. Most people even call it the best game of 2022 because of how well it is made. I can confidently say that Rogue Legacy has the potential to be a timeless classic.
Neon White is a bit of a weird one; I’m not going to lie. This game was not my cup of tea, but I saw how well it did, especially on twitch. Twitch dictates how well the game is going if it effectively pulls in viewers, which seemed too easy for Neon White.
Neon White is a first-person shooter puzzle indie game in which you must kill all demons in heaven. It is reminiscent of Doom, but the movement, as well as the utility in this game, is unparalleled. Furthermore, the best thing about these indie games is that they take little to no resources to play. So, even if you have a bad machine, chances are you can run most of the games in this list.
Sable is an open-world exploration game that was released for Windows as well as Xbox consoles in 2021. It will be coming out for the ps5 sometime later this month. It is developed by Shed works and features Sable with her gliding, traversing the great lands with her.
Sable is a very chill game, to put it bluntly. It is a feel-good game that allows the player to zoom around with her looking at the game’s unique art style as well as great original music. The only point in this game is to adventure and discover.
No Man’s Sky
No Man’s Sky is probably the most popular game that we are going to list here. It is not the highest-rated indie game here, but its content offers a great deal. Its initial release date is 2016, but it is getting a huge rework which bumps up its rating by quite a lot.
Similar to Sable, you adventure around in the game, wandering through galaxies. You collect resources and build your own stations anywhere you like. This game is like the space version of Minecraft but better. This does put in a few questions about the innovation. The beauty of this game is not its idea but the world it is set in and how grand every scene looks.
Just Die Already
The final game we will talk about is Just Die Already. It is an old-people mayhem sandbox game in which you only have one job, getting angry and hitting people. Additionally, it is one of the best stress-relieving games on steam, and it is absolutely fantastic how well it’s made.
It came out in May last year, but it still gives great numbers and ratings. What’s more bizarre is that this game only costs 7 USD but offers more content than most 30-40 USD games. By content, I mean the number of hours you will spend enjoying the game. Too many story games lately have been bland and become boring after 1-2 hours of gameplay.
Well, Gamers, that does it for the top ten indie games of recent years that prove how well smaller studios are going. I consider these studios to be the actual backbone of the gaming industry. The level of passion you see in these games is far clearer than any interest in most AAA games.
At the end of the day, AAA games are more of a business endeavor than a passion project, so it is likely that some indie games may outshine them. Stardew Valley is a great example of simple passion dominating the business.
Finally, leave your thoughts about this list in the comments down below. If there are more games you want players to know about, then leave those down in the replies. Until next time, take care gamers.