The Nintendo Switch is a nonstop good time if you’re into indie games and don’t mind throwing down a little extra for the “Switch Tax”. The amount of games I’ve purchased and then re-purchased because they were brought over to the Switch is higher than I’d care to admit. For me, the Indie World showcase was a great opportunity to get a sense of what was coming down the pipe. This showcase proved that Nintendo is interested in publishing diverse games from a wide variety of developers. It also proved that a single honk is enough to set the entire internet on fire all over again.
Things started off strong with Hades, developer Supergiant’s latest. I don’t particularly enjoy roguelikes, but I would play this, solely off of the pedigree of Supergiant. Transistor is probably one of my favorite games of this generation, and Pyre is up there too. I’ve heard great things about this game from the Waypoint Radio crew so I imagine I’ll pick it up one of these days.
I’m almost certain I’ve seen trailers for Spiritfarer before- possibly at last year’s E3? Took a quick break to Google and yes, I definitely saw this trailer at the Xbox briefing last summer. It looks just as beautiful now as it did then, with striking art direction and extremely cute animals. I’ve only ever played Sundered by Thunder Lotus, and this game seems like the opposite of that. I’m here for it, and I love that they did the now-iconic surprise same-day release that Nintendo Directs and showcases like this have become known for.
Garden Story and Subnautica aren’t exactly my jam, but I did appreciate that little grape person and the extremely chill vibes the game put out. The ocean terrifies me so I can’t realistically see myself playing any amount of Subnautica but it certainly looks like a cool concept. Something like this is said during every Nintendo indie event but I think it’s incredible just how many games are getting ported to Switch.
As soon as I finished watching this showcase, I picked up Takeshi and Hiroshi. Brothers out to help each other? A dead parent, whose influence is clearly felt over the course of the game? An art style that is so uniquely beautiful that it instantly made me a fan of whatever comes next from Oink Games? I expect to feel feelings.
Raji: An Ancient Epic looks to be almost exactly my cup of tea. In a weird way it reminded me of Papo y Yo in terms of a game that has a unique art style influenced by who developed it. The trailer shows it to be an action/ adventure game inspired by Hindu and Balinese mythology, and I love when a game can educate as well as entertain.
Bear and Breakfast struck me as the more comedic version of Spiritfarer, which is not necessarily a criticism. It’s like a B&B simulator but with bears; it didn’t particularly strike me.
I’ve already played and loved A Short Hike, which was a part of that unbelievably large Black Lives Matter itch.io bundle from a few months back. I’ve always enjoyed games that can be finished in an afternoon, and A Short Hike is as lengthy or as condensed as you want it to be. Highly recommend.
Card Shark almost immediately won me over with its style. I’m a sucker for any sort of painterly quality and Devolver Digital is probably one of the most interesting publishers around. I enjoyed Reigns and this looks like it has significantly more depth.
I’m not really a fan of the loot-focused dungeon crawler so Torchlight III didn’t light any fires for me. That’s a pun about torches.
I always, always want new weird puzzle games so Manifold Garden might be the one. The level design struck me as “instantly iconic” thought of course at the end of the day it depends on how it all comes together.
What do you get when you mix Hollow Knight with Ori and the Blind Forest and a big pinch of earnestness? Evergate, apparently. This game wear its influences out on its sleeve and I thought featuring the designers from Stone Lantern Games was a really nice touch. It looks solid but what really sold me was just how passionate the artists seemed to be.
And of course: more goose. Geese? Free multiplayer update to Untitled Goose Game, which I actually wrote about for one of my freelance jobs. Cannot wait to make a Gaming While Married post about this.
It’s a good time own a Switch. Can’t wait to see what else comes down the pipe in the years to come.