Top 10 Indie Games to Look Out for in 2018

Another year alive on this Earth equates to nothing but another year of gooey, gaming goodness. 2017 brought us Dead Cells, Getting Over It, Oxygen Not Included, Cuphead–too much succulent indie epicness to cram into a single paragraph in some internet article. But with the new year comes a new batch o’ games, and the creatives of the indie world just will not quit. Here are 10 upcoming titles to keep a careful watch for in 2018.

 

10. Light Fall

A fast-paced platformer with an even faster, zippity player character–Light Fall is a game that’ll have you jumping, bouncing across walls, activating cool, space-themed objects, and dodging obstacles to progress.

Already gathering praise and critical acclaim from several other indie articles and groups, Light Fall and its intergalactic art style is a surefire bet for games that’ll impress in the following year.

 

9. Below

A myriad of intricate sound design and a dark atmosphere, Below is set to be one of the indie gaming world’s many artistic masterpieces.

With RPG-inspired mechanics, each progressive level sees the main character exploring underground environs and combating colorful foes as he moves down, down, and down ever deeper–trying ever so hard to show the player what lies at the lowest recesses of the screen.

8. Death’s Gambit

“Dark Souls in 2D.” That’s the description most people will use to describe it… and they’re far from being wrong. Adult Swim is back at it again, and they certainly don’t intend to disappoint.

A dark fantasy setting, hulking foes that stand twice, sometimes triple your height, a brutal challenge that’ll send the casuals into a fit of ragequitting, and the devoted into a satisfactory light of glory–Death’s Gambit will not be a game to miss come next year.

7. Fight Knight

Of all the games on this list, this one’s sure to pack a punch. Several, in fact. Playing in the first person–and hearkening back to the days of The Elder Scrolls: ArenaFight Knight is a game that’d make Rocky proud.

A dungeon crawler at its heart, this game humorously has the player activating every NPC and killing every monster with fists and fists alone. Abandon your spells. Your swords. Your bows. Embrace the only weapon man was ever meant to wield.

6. The Last Night

Never before have we seen a title embrace the words “dynamic” and “cinematic” quite like The Last Night does. Set to the backdrop of a cyberpunk world, The Last Night is technically a platformer, but that doesn’t really describe the experience so well.

With a camera that floats and hovers just about as frequently as the characters’ expressive animations change, The Last Night was cited as one of the best looking games at E3 by far.

5. Fe

Glide through the air, climb up trees, dig your way across, or simply frolic through the dark, crystalline Nordic forest that’s brought to the table in Fe.

With a focus on its ecosystem, Fe is a strictly 3D game that presents us with a life-like world filled with soul. Discover that ecosystems many secrets, solve its side quests, and make contact with brilliant, mystical creatures–playing as one such being of your own.

4. Ashen

Are you one who craves expansive, open worlds? Is your childhood filled with memories of exemplifications of freedom like The Elder ScrollsFallout, Grand Theft Auto, and Minecraft? Look no further, for Ashen has just the cure to soothe your weary bones, traveler.

With stamina-based combat, a drop in, drop out multiplayer mechanic, and a world that doesn’t bind you down with its chains, Ashen is a roleplay-friendly title that’s just begging for you to get immersed.

3. Ori and the Will of the Wisps

A game that looks so good, it’s literally too hard to believe at times, Ori and the Will of the Wisps is a popular sequel to the critically-acclaimed Ori and the Blind Forest.

A metroidvania action platformer, this game doesn’t just stun you, it dazzles you with its ever-changing atmosphere, creative foes, and visual storytelling-based narrative. Backed by Microsoft, Ori and the Will of the Wisps is sure to be an interesting title indeed.

2. Praey for the Gods

Enjoyed battling the pantagruelian titans we saw in Shadow of the Colossus? If so, Praey for the Gods is just the game to look out for in 2018. As a member of a winter-y, wasting world, your job is to journey through this snowbound realm and uncover just what lies at the source of its slow, inevitable death.

A survival-based action-adventure game, you start with nothing but the clothes on your back. A lone wanderer in this dangerous abyss, your only hope of staying alive is to smite the very deities that you worship.

1. Kingdom Come: Deliverance

To all those who cried for a realism-based, historically-accurate, story-driven, medieval RPG, cry no more–for Kingdom Come: Deliverance is here to answer the call!

Cemented within the once real-world setting of the feudalism-based Holy Roman Empire, Kingdom Come: Deliverance has had medieval martial artists and historians alike drooling with its effective portrayal of life in these olden days. Gone are magic and spells; this is an age of smiths and swords!

Stay tuned as we tackle these games and many more! Check out our top 10 picks for best indie games in 2017!

Back to the 90’s – Rogue Quest: The Vault of the Lost Tyrant Review

Just before we hop into this review, we want to sincerely thank FeedSpot for naming us one of the best indie game sites out there! Make sure to go check them out!

Before we had open world tactical RPG’s, loot box gambling, and convoluted combat systems, there was a simpler time back in the early 90’s where the market was dominated by simple point and click style adventure games such as Space Quest and Monkey Island. You simply clicked and watched as your character walked to that location or interacted with an item to experience a story. That’s it, no strings attached. Simple in their design but often brilliant in their execution. While these games were beloved by many, the community eventually moved on and the genre died out, save for the odd revival. But nostalgia is a powerful motivator, so the small team of ExperaGames sought to bring back the early 90’s point and click goodness with their newest game Rogue Quest: The Vault of the Lost Tyrant. Should you play it? That solely depends on the answer to the question ‘how much nostalgia toward old-school point and click adventures do you have?’.

Almost in a direct homage to the old Sierra Entertainment games (Space QuestKing’s Quest), the game tasks you with escaping from a prickly situation, in this case, the sealed off vault of the lost tyrant. You will do this with the help of the main character: Cassandra Nech, a treasure huntress from the rogue’s guild who arrived at the fabled vault in search of treasure. The game’s coarse pixel art is subpar compared to other modern pixel art outings on the market right now, but it is clear that a lot of love and dedication went into bringing the world alive through animation. Whether it’s Cassandra swinging from a rope to clear a chasm or the comical walking cycle of the wannabe pirate brothers Needlebag and Finspin, a lot of work went into animation, just don’t expect something along the lines of Hyper Light Drifter.

Rogue Quest does a good job of supplying you with tasks and puzzles that strike a proper balance of difficulty. Many point-and-click games are notorious for ‘pixel hunting’, where the hitboxes for puzzle solutions are so small players will need to click every tiny pebble in case it’s interactable. Puzzles in Rogue Quest often boil down to logical solutions. Need to burn away the toxic mushrooms? Perhaps tear off the cloth hanging from the wall and set it ablaze. And if you really can’t figure out what it is you have to do then there is a nifty hint system. There are a lot of little quality of life functions in the game, like being able to double click doors to skip Cassandra having to walk to the door or being able to open up shortcuts to decrease travel time.

There are, however, also a slew of technical problems. Skipping through text sometimes creates a jarring flicker and controls are at times unresponsive when I would try to open my inventory. Writing is often too on the nose and at times even grammatically incorrect. Rogue Quest does little to innovate the genre, the pixel art isn’t up to par compared to other pixel art games and the game is really short clocking just over an hour. Yet, despite these negative aspects, the game does have a charm to it. Do you have overflowing nostalgia for these types of games and an hour to spare? Then give it a shot. But if you haven’t liked point-and-click adventure games in the past then Rogue Quest: The Vault of the Lost Tyrant will not change your mind.

EnomView Score: 6 out of 10

Check out the game: http://store.steampowered.com/app/728420/Rogue_Quest_The_Vault_of_the_Lost_Tyrant/

A Discarded Robot Trying to get Home – Defunct

Defunct is an indie adventure game that in a single word can be described as “awe-inspiring”. In Defunct, you control a broken robot that has fallen from the safety of your giant cargo ship. Your one goal is to get back to the ship before it’s too late.

Defunct Review

You can utilize the multiple abilities given to you such as flipping yourself upside down to connect to otherwise unreachable areas and the power to collect energy and use a super boost to traverse your way through eleven different levels with fluctuating climates and biomes. The open-world aspect of the game allows you to explore areas while looking off into the distance at beautiful landscapes. All of this while you roll around, trying to solve puzzles needed to get home. There are also a number of collectables on each of the levels which unlock new skins and special tricks. Utilize them to customize your next playthrough or while testing your skills in the time-trial mode.

The game requires you to navigate between narrow alleys and duck to evade low hanging rocks, all while being pressured by the timer looming over you. There are also multiple puzzles that, when done correctly, will allow you to continue on into farther areas, as well as unlock hidden zones where collectables can be found.

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Although the game has no narration or description of what is happening, the cutscenes scattered throughout the game display everything you need to know to understand the turmoil your robot is going through. Piece together these clips and help your robot on his journey home.

After finishing the game, each individual level will be unlocked, allowing you to take part in time trials. Time trials slightly differ from the normal game by a handful of key components. The first being the on-screen timer, displaying how long it has taken to beat the level. The second being small green items that will freeze the timer for one second. Upon completion of a time trial, a small window displaying your time and global rank pops up. Depending on what your time is. it will also give you a medal in the ranking of bronze, silver, gold, and platinum. Finally, for all the speedrunning enthusiasts out there, there is an in-game skin that is instantly unlocked. The skin allows you to sport the AGDQ logo, like a true speedrunner.

Defunct Review

All in all, this is a must buy-game masterfully created by Freshly Squeezed. For the captivating experience helping your robot home, it’s definitely worth the price. The Gameplay was entertaining and the puzzles were at times pretty challenging, but not so challenging that I was frustrated with it.

Although the controls can be a little difficult to get used to at first, it slowly becomes more natural and free-flowing. The story could have gone more in-depth, but I feel like the mystery of the land adds to the perspective of how the robot you control feels about being stranded on this strange planet.

EnomView Score: 7 out of 10

10 Best Indie Games to Buy – Steam Winter Sale

  1. Rain World

Very few games will make you scream “EVERYTHING WANTS TO EAT ME!” faster than Rain World. Curiously brought to us by Adult Swim, like Robot Unicorn Attack, Rain World is a challenging game that scores a lot of points for its artistic atmosphere and visuals.

Using your slug-shaped cat player-character, you navigate through the ruins of a dark, broken world–utilizing gameplay mechanics which include elements of shoot-em-ups, stealth, and even survival to surpass challenges and battle the various monsters that try to undo your efforts every step of the way. This game may prove alien for a few, but it’s hard to deny that–between the art and the animations–this is one of the best-looking 2D games on the market.

  1. Antichamber

Come one, come all to those with creative minds, a willingness to learn, and patient, patient souls. In this, the player moves from chamber to chamber–room to room–in an attempt to solve first-person puzzles to progress.

While it may get a little too well-acquainted with this games stylized art approach, Antichamber’s game designers clearly had originality in mind–and their game will get your critical thinking juices flowing any day.

  1. Stick Fight: The Game

Fun, fun, fun! Stick Fight sure is filled with it when you’ve got friends to play with and a solid internet connection. Shoot. Stab. Punch. Do all of these things and more with your doodle-based posse.

This game is great because it not only offers an entertaining experience but has the propensity to really make you laugh, too. From the shared shenanigans of you and your comrades to the squirmy animations that make your character models look like two-dimensional Totally Accurate Battle Simulator units on 2x speed, you’re sure to have a blast.

  1. Dungeon of the Endless

Not everyone likes the sound of a tower defense, but the RPG elements intertwined within Dungeon of the Endless have a way of pulling you in. As the member of the crew that fell victim to a crash landing, your goal is to go deeper. Deeper. And deeper into the depths of a strange dungeon–as implied by the name.

While this game is definitely a tower defense, expect to feel like you’re also sometimes playing a top-down dungeon crawler like Pokemon Mystery Dungeon. Advance through every floor and find out if it ever truly ends.

  1. Don’t Starve

The game may be called “Don’t Starve”, but there are a lot more ways to die than pure starvation in this colorful, but bleak little world. Playing as a scientist, your job is–fittingly–to experiment with your surroundings to learn best how to survive.

Just about everything you encounter will beg the hopeful question of “Can this help me survive?” and the not-so-hopeful question of “Will messing with this get me killed?” A grimdark naturalist will be forever at home here.

  1. Dead Cells

Very few rogue-lite, Metroidvania, action platformers hit the nail on the head like does Dead Cells. Controlling a character without a head, you battle through and delve across a perilous castle with enemies galore.

There are no repeats in this game. No saves. No respawns. No checkpoints. To quote the description on Steam: “Kill, die, learn, repeat.” Though that description leaves out the key difference that you always keep all your upgrades–unlike other games in this genre. If you want a real challenge that’ll leave you feeling like a champion after your first playthrough, then this is the game for you.

We mentioned this game in our Top 10 Indie Games of 2017 article, which you can check out here.

  1. Starbound

Teleport down from your own personal spaceship to worlds unknown–exploring rich environments, fighting challenging foes, and learning interesting backstories. Starbound is a proper exemplification of the Terraria formula done right.

Break digital blocks. Wander into caves. Scavenge for resources. Then–finally–craft it all into brilliant items. And the cherry on top? Adding friends to the mix. Much like Minecraft with its procedurally-generated worlds and biomes, the amount of fun to be had here is truly infinite–to say nothing of the interesting stories accompanying each intergalactic race.

  1. Plague Inc. Evolved

Ever wanted to create the perfect disease and destroy all of humanity with it? No? Well, now’s your chance, as that’s exactly what Plague Inc. Evolved allows you to do! Starting with patient zero, you level up with infection and upgrade your pathogen through various skill trees which unlock different abilities with different benefits and consequences–dependent upon the situation.

Spread the pandemic. Infect every continent with your illness. Shatter the world with your pitiless plague.

  1. Oxygen Not Included

Build a subterranean colony, deep from the under earth, that provides for every need and desire. Every need except for one: oxygen. Catering to colonists with different traits that cause different effects, Oxygen Not Included is all about a struggle to keep them alive.

This game will have you constantly searching for pockets filled to the brim with water, food, oxygen, hydrogen–you name it. Made by the developers of Don’t Starve, this is one of the first games I’ve ever seen that brings a smile to my face with its randomly generated worlds–always providing for a different experience every playthrough.

We also mentioned this game in our Top 10 Indie Games of 2017 article, which you can check out here.

  1. Terraria

A model of sandbox design for many game developers, Terraria is a must-have for all those who’d call themselves adventurers and creative.

Terraria has what many call the “16-bit sidescroller take” on Minecraft’s expansive formula. And just like Minecraft, the amount of stuff to be done is truly boundless. From the dungeons you explore to the pixelated enemies you fight, there’s always something to occupy yourself with here. Just like the holes you dig, things only deepen as you progress.

Finding your other half – Jack N’ Jill Review

A simple yet challenging platformer made by Rohan Narang. With music and graphics that can be considered a nod to the retro games. With various mechanisms to reach the end of each level, this game can provide hours of entertainment.

Jack N’ Jill is a one-button retro platformer. Take control of Jack or Jill, jumping (or wall jumping) to get past obstacles and enemies. Your goal is to find your other half while wandering all 7 worlds. There are 20 levels in each world, making it a total of 140 levels.

As you start the game, you can choose between Jack or Jill by selecting one in the lower left corner. By default, it lets you play as Jack. When entering the first level, you get a small tutorial about how to play this game. Tap to start a level and delve into a fun, yet simple game. Like the popular game “Geometry Dash”, repeatedly press your screen to keep the moving Jack alive. As you progress, the difficulty rises, introducing complex combo-jumps you learn by repetition. For example, as soon as you start the second world, you gain the ability to wall jump. Each time something new appears, the character comments on it before the start of the level. Sadly, the unlocked abilities can’t be used at earlier levels.

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While the gameplay seems simple, it is not always forgiving. It starts off easy, but soon you notice that the timing has to be a lot more precise than you expect. Sometimes you need to press the jump button way before you reach the pit. Another time you need to press it at the last moment. You can’t really determine what you have to do by looking at the level. This makes many parts of the adventure very unforgiving, as when you die due to this, you have to start the stage all over again. Thankfully, the developers were more forgiving when hopping off of enemies. You have a larger window to press the screen again to jump the full distance again instead of half the distance. If you managed to wait for the last moment, you even can jump further than possible. There are no uses for that, but it makes it a bit more manageable.

The graphics remind us of the Gameboy days. The black and white style with the simple character design is a tribute to that beautiful handheld device. The backgrounds are also very simple and not in the least distracting. In fact, if you focus on the game itself, you hardly notice it. The main characters could have been a lot more unique, but the simple design of them really works well with the retro theme.

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While the game is fun, and the gameplay good, the music itself is repetitive. Each world has their own music, but all of them seem to consist of the same parts in it, with some other instruments giving variation to the world music. For short sessions, it seems fine, but if you play it for more than 30 minutes, it gets annoying. When you keep dying, you keep hearing the music go on and on, always cheerful. It does not really capture the retro feeling we suspect they were going for. The 8-bit era had games with better music, which is a shame since this is where they could have shown their love for the game.

The games of Rohan Narang are mostly inspired by old Gameboy and NES titles, and this game really shows his love for those titles. We find the characters cute and charming, and this game is no different. However, in contrast to the old Gameboy games, the music of this game is below average quality. The best way to enjoy this game is by turning the music off and listening to old Gameboy platformer OST’s while enjoying your simple adventure.

EnomView Score: 7 out of 10.

Dragon Sin – Tiny Human V. Massive Dragons

Looking for a game with a medieval style? How about one where you can kill dragons as a handsome mercenary. Well, I got the game just for you! Fate Dragon Studio has released Dragon Sin, a badass adventure game with surprisingly awesome combat.

The developers of the title have stated that Dragon Sin was produced in their college years, which they have since graduated. For a game that was made in one of busiest years of person’s life lives, it looks surprisingly well done.

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The team has also stated that they have a lot to add to the game, but don’t have the resources to add them yet. If they can make a game as good as this on limited resources, we could only imagine what they can do with more. The game isn’t long, only lasting about 35 minutes.

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Dragon Sin is centred around killing dragons with a little bit of story added in. You play as Greer, the offspring of the Dragon Lord. Sure the graphics aren’t GTA 5 level, but what are you really asking for from a group of college kids with limited time and money.

There’s one thing that I forgot to mention: Dragon Sin is 100% free to play. Use creative, well-thought combat mechanics and a massive sword to slice and dice your draconian enemies right now at no cost. Pick it up on Steam in the link below.

Dragon Sin on Steam: http://store.steampowered.com/app/534220/Dragons_Sin/

An Interview with Veetorp – Legend of Zelda Randomizer (ALTTP)

The Legend of Zelda A Link to the past Randomizer grew big in a short time. Today we will be having one of the developers of the program in for the interview. It is Veetorp, one of the lead programmers of this project. Without his dedication, this would never have become as good as it is today.

From several people I have heard that you are the one behind the randomizer code, who first started working on it. What pushed you to make that randomizer?

I rewrote the randomizer code to what it is today based on code that Dessyregt originally wrote in C#. He had written a Super Metroid Randomizer and adapted the ideas from that into A Link to the Past. It wouldn’t be fair to say I first started working on it, but I certainly made it what it is today. For me personally, I love this game, and I love the logic puzzles of all the ways the game allows you to get different things. I am a programmer by nature, so once I got my teeth into it, I couldn’t stop writing code and making it better.

A programmer by nature is a good thing to be these days, and that definitely made the randomizer into a piece of art already. I have seen many runs of this game and played a few randomizes as well. I can agree this is a great game for this. Yet while making the Randomizer, I am sure you have run into many hardships. Like changing the item location would require a lot of work. What was the hardest thing you have encountered so far in making this? 

We have a great team of guys around the project, really brilliant guys. A lot of the time, if something seems impossible, just talking it out with them or asking help has gone a long way. From a randomizer perspective, one of the hardest things has been working out a fill algorithm that is both fast and achieves the most varied results possible, as well as the logic involved in some of the more “interesting” dungeons. Palace of Darkness has had its logic overhauled countless times, including an eight-hour call between me and ChristosOwen, where we tried to figure out every possible way someone could key-lock in the dungeon.

The game itself was almost originally designed to handle moving around items around. Moving 1 item from a chest on one side of the world to another chest is surprisingly easy, but when you modify some of the more interesting item locations, that becomes harder. Bombos Tablet is an example of this. Karkat had to rewrite large portions of the item draw code to enable randomization of the standing items locations like that.

So the normal items itself were easy to move around. Were all item locations found already by the time you started, or did you have to dig deep into the code to find them all?

A fair amount of them were found or created. Most of the recent deep digging into the code has been for all the extras and added modes we have been working on currently and recently.

One of your recently added modes is Key-sanity. Was it easy to implement that, besides changing what the maps and compass do in the game? I can imagine it harder to make sure the keys and dungeon items stayed in their own dungeon.

For Key-sanity we had to create 58 brand new items to the game. The keys, maps, and compasses were tied to their dungeon. The game only had generic versions of these and based the item you got on where you got it. We also had to completely reimagine our randomizer to understand what it meant to find keys outside their own dungeon.

So it required a lot more work after all. Did this reimagining give you any new insights? Any possibility for new game modes or variations?

Very Much so, we have 2 larger variations we are working on right now. It also made the logic a little easier to maintain, although it is a little more complex.

Anything you can reveal about the two larger variations, or is it all a secret for now?

One involves a more Zelda1-esque key situation, currently named Key-Sanity-b. The other one will be a fun surprise.

Sounds interesting, and a possible new article as well when the surprise has been released. But to the other point, today in the daily race, I noticed that Christmas has arrived to Hyrule. While many online games nowadays do something for this season, what inspired you into doing this?

The whole team has thrown around ideas of special randomizers at different times: April Fools, St. Patricks Day, Valentines Day. It struck me this season to really just push for it. It certainly helped that many of the hackers of AlttP could help out with their specific areas of expertise. Plus, it is always fun to spice up the game, it is what we do.

The ice mechanics in the overworld is annoying, but the fact that you don’t need flippers to access several areas also changed the locations you can visit earlier. Did you account for this while making it?

Annoying? Festive! We had a discussion about having the logic account for iced-over lakes and rivers but decided the time would be spent better making all the features we did. I believe in the future we will adjust the logic when we make adjustments like this. The sequence breaks for not having flippers is mostly harmless.

It was an early decision to keep the Ice Physics only on the overworld. Dungeons would have been way too hard, and there would be countless bugs to solve.

And we are all glad that it stayed in the overworld, well maybe except Moldorm. With this festive edition, there is a poem on the site and at the ending as well. As a poet myself, I am wondering who thought up the poem.

That is our very own walking_eye, one of the newest members to the team. I asked for a short description of the mode without giving him too many details, and that poem arrived. It was like getting a gift myself, so amazing.

I can say he has talent. How long will people be able to enjoy the festive randomizer?

Currently, we are planning to keep it available until the new year.

That will give our readers a chance to try it out on the release of the interview. One subject that we did not touch yet, however, are the custom sprites. From what I know of trying to change sprites of SNES games, this is a hell. How did you overcome this?

Surprisingly, Link’s graphics are all in a single location and not compressed. With a few graphic editing tools out there it is actually relatively easy to swap them out for a different set. We also have a large active group of sprite developers that have been pumping them out like candy.

That is a surprise for a SNES game. And the large group is certainly helpful for that as well. What is your favorite sprite so for in this and why?

I really do like them all, laughably original Link is my favorite. It holds so much childhood nostalgia. I will say to try the updated Santa Link, he got a little spruce up for the season.

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Some of the sprites people can select for the randomizer.

Original Link because of the nostalgia is a good reason. Personally, I prefer to take the Touhou characters. While I will be waiting for more of them to appear, I heard that V28 of the randomizer will appear very soon. What can we expect in that one?

It certainly is getting closer, V28 is adding a feature on the site of a “Daily Game” where is pregenerates 1 game each day of different settings. This way people can play the same game at different times, or try new modes they hadn’t thought of before. We are also updating the link Entrance Randomizer to have some of the new features that Amazing Ampharos has been putting in, like Key-Sanity Entrance Randomizer. There will also be a slew of fixes for the Customizer we put in V27.

That would be very interesting to see. Do you have any tips for new runners of this randomizer? Anything they should begin with?

First I would suggest joining the discord, there are so many great people in the community that are very happy to help out. Then I would certainly suggest playing through the original game, getting a feel for the mechanics is very helpful. This also helps with the general knowledge of Vanilla locations. Then I would suggest watching a few people stream the game, they will give great tips on routing and how to get through certain sticky situations. Don’t get discouraged by your early runs taking over 2 hours, my first rando took me 5 hours. People who sub 1:30 randomizer regularly have played it a lot. And most of all, just have fun playing it.

My first 4 runs ended in unfinished runs, the 4th one sadly due to a crash of my console at Ganon. Crossproduct’s tracker did help me a lot in learning the different item locations and what is required for those. Would you recommend his tracker as well for beginners or do you have a different one in mind?

I would absolutely recommend Crossproduct’s tracker, that guy is both amazing and brilliant. The world map tracker is super valuable to new runners, just knowing where you can go is probably one of the most important things in item randomizer. He is also my roommate for AGDQ (Awesome Games Done Quick) this year.

That is great. We do plan to cover AGDQ as well, even if none of our team can be there. I did not check the schedule of it yet, but will there be a randomizer at it as well?

You’re in for a treat. Saturday night ChristosOwen and Andy will be doing a race.

Living in Europe, I guess I will miss the best stuff once again. Anyway, we are nearing the end of this interview. Do you have any last words to our readers?

Thank you all for your time, I hope you guys get a chance to try the randomizer and enjoy it as much as I do.


For more information about the randomizer, check our previous article where we cover the basics of it here.

5 Fun Games for Less Than 10 Dollars – Bitten Toast Games Bundle

Every one of Bitten Toast Games’ titles are currently on sale. That in itself is amazing, but what’s even more amazing is that you can get all of them at the same time for under $10. Pick up a copy of the famous game What the Box? alongside their newest title, Winter Warland.

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Winter Warland, a title similar to What the Box?, has you controlling a snowman hidden among a field of statues that look exactly the same as you. Play with your friends, also disguised as quirky snowmen. Sort through the endless amount of clones in search of your real enemies.

Keep fighting until you’re the last player standing. Utilizing your long-range snowballs and carrot-shiv, clear away your enemies one by one. The Christmas themed maps are perfect for battling your friends over the holiday. Winter Warland isn’t the only thing you get when purchasing this package though!

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You’ll also receive a title that I’ve been wanting to pick up myself: Rocket Fist. Alongside the Rocket Fist soundtrack, you receive a title that looks energetic and fast-paced. Use rocket-propelled fists in this wacky game to subdue your friends and claim victory.

You could find the whole collection of games and purchase the bundle here: http://store.steampowered.com/app/413500/Rocket_Fist/

Have a Merry Christmas!

Top 10 Indie Games of 2017 – Best Indie Games

2017 was a truly fantastic year for the indie genre. We’re wrapping up the remarkable year with our 10 favorite 2017 Indie Games! These are not only games that have been able to break through the mold and ascended to gamer-fame across all communities, but titles that have flown under the radar, only gifting a few with great experiences. After tons of discussion, we’ve narrowed it down to these top 10. If your favorite game didn’t make the list, don’t worry! It’s definitely a top contender. Without further ado, let’s hop right into it!

10. Getting Over It With Bennet Foddy

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Although probably the most recent indie game on this list, Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy is already a major success, and it isn’t hard to see why. The game creates a perfect storm of rage with it’s nonchalant, intelligent narration besides fiercely difficult obstacles and mechanics. It’s already blown up on YouTube, as content-creators throw chairs and smash monitors in rage.

Using your mouse to control your hammer, guide yourself onward traversing difficult terrains almost certain to make you lose your temper. Don’t worry though, (Sarcastic) Bennett Foddy’s soothing narration will be with you every step of the way.

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The game features you, a… well… naked man, in a cauldron, using a sledgehammer, to climb a mountain. The game was based on Jazzuo’s 2002 B-Game classic, Sexy Hiking where a very similar concept was used. The anger-inducing game creates a unique range of obstacles to conquer. Fling yourself upwards, sideways, off cliffs and over houses. Don’t fall through! You most likely won’t enjoy the climb a second or third time.

9. Oxygen Not Included

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Are you a builder? Are sandbox games your thing? I think it’s time for you to check out Oxygen Not Included. Travel to a secluded land with a team of three to colonize, create, and survive. Build an infrastructure of wiring, pipes, containers, pumps, and so much more.

Control and guide your small team, outlasting the harsh environments in space. Be a true leader, managing everything from water pollution to oxygen rates. Oxygen Not Included truly offers a new-world experience for anyone trying to colonize space.

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Although the game is still in early access, Oxygen Not Included already holds more features than many popular indie games. Traverse your very own universe and follow through on your space dreams.

8. Dead Cells

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When summing up Dead Cells it’s rather hard to make it not sounds like a traditional experience. It’s a pixel-art, hack and slash, Metroidvania game set in dungeons and distant lands. It contains many roguelike features as well, but we’ve seen a lot of those too in recent games. Despite all of this, Dead Cells somehow feels refreshing! And that’s because it approaches all of these elements a little bit differently.

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The pixel art is generated from regular animation so it feels extremely smooth. Players are not locked in a certain route but can choose from diverging paths with each their own difficulty and scaled rewards. But above all, it’s just really well executed. Items are impactful, weapons are diverse and the difficulty is expertly tweaked. A real risk-versus-reward kind of game, both vibrantly beautiful and ghastly challenging. It is a true joy to play.

7. The First Tree

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The First Tree offers an experience unlike any other game on this list, and that experience is the story of loss. Follow both a fox determined to save her young from a hungry wolf in masterful conjunction with a touching story about a son’s attempt to cope with the loss of his father in this heartfelt adventure.

With some of the best design we’ve seen all year, The First Tree offers a reality known much too well to some: The regret of not handling situations better, only to not be able to make amends. Travel as a worried fox across a vast landscape, spanning mountains, forests, and snowy terrains.

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If you’re someone like me, who craves beautiful games, then this game is for you. If you seek meaningful games, this game is for you. If you have something to cope with, this game is for you.

I won’t spoil the ending, but let’s just say that I was having a very hard time holding back my tears. You can check out a full review of the game in the description below.

6. Night in the Woods

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Sometimes you buy a game after months of deliberation. Other times you buy a game on a whim because a screenshot looked charming. That might turn into a disappointment or a nice gaming experience. But on a few rare occasions, it turns into one of the best, most deep and well told narrative gaming experiences you ever had all year!

Night in The Woods flew under the radar for many but blew lucky players away. Through a cast of colourful anthropomorphic animals, the game tells a story that is both touching and heartfelt. Few saw the amazing experience coming because the game toyed with everyone’s expectations. When you first start up the game you meet a myriad of colourful creatures and you’ll be instantly enthralled. Rightly so! Colours are bright, animation is bouncy, and the catgirl you play as is quirky. But then you learn that characters have a darker side. Kids practice knife fights in the woods, get drunk at parties while the parents face the consequences of economic depression, and so much more.

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The game masterfully displays a misconception. People are a lot deeper than meet the eye, and this colourful cast has a lot of skeletons in their closet. A stab at modern reality. One of the best narrative games of 2017, unexpected and magical.

5. Absolver

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One of the most classic gaming genres is ‘fighting games’. Going all the way back to arcade-era games such as Street Fighter, the genre invokes much nostalgia. Despite the categories popularity, recent fighting games haven’t produced a lot of innovation.

But along came Absolver, an open world fighting game where you learn new fighting moves by blocking and dodging both NPC enemies and players that reside on the other side of your screen. Once you learn these moves you add them to your fighting deck and create your very own fighting style! This game really makes YOU the fighter, not some preset character. Test your skills in PVP or PVE, maybe even start your own fighting school for others to join. Technically still in early access, but a lot of fun to play!

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With three classes to utilize and a fourth hidden one, there is a lot of replayability. With the capacity of switching in and out moves, and having a secondary sword moveset, we can see ourselves playing this game for a long time to come.

4. Opus Magnum

Opus Magnum surprised us late this year by providing an excellent puzzle game where the answer didn’t matter as much as the way you personally solved the puzzle. Rewarding creativity, this game has you create elaborate machines to create alchemical compounds within a steampunk setting, but instead of scoring you on time, it gives a graph showing you how many other people got close to your score in effectiveness, space used or speed, with the systems having no preference in score over one another.

By allowing you to succeed in solving the puzzles in your own personal way, Zachtronics created a game that rewards creativity over brainpower and has you optimizing and improving your contraptions for months to come. It gives some spectacular results to boot!

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Coming from a line of Zachtronic games, you would think there’d be a high entry level, but Opus Magnum ended up being the most accessible game yet! As a beginner, it will be very easy to make that explosive phial compound. Fancy yourself an expert? Make that bad boy in under 40 cycles. Just make sure to send us a gif of it.

3. Gang Beasts

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Number 3 is one of our favorite games released this year. Ever since it took the Youtube gaming community by storm, we’ve been in love with its minimalistic designs and hilarious physics.

Fight your friends, throwing gelatinous punches with the goal of knocking them off the map (or grinding them to a pulp). The ragdoll-like physics allow you to pick up, hurl, and knock out your enemies. Wacky maps aid your brawlers in sending your enemies to their doom.

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Play as an adorable looking blob attacking your friends, trying to get any advantage on them possible. Catch them off guard and shove them in front of a train… or a truck… or out of an elevator… or into a meat grinder… or into an incinerator… You get the point. This game is hands down one worth getting to play with friends!

2. Little Nightmares

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Remember all those terrifying dreams we had of massive monsters coming to get us? Morphed creatures hidden in shadow, under your bed and in the closet. Well, take that, multiply it by 100, and you have Little Nightmares. The story itself is ingenious, and with its latest DLC released last month, the horror can last for solid play time.

This disturbing story allows you to control a little girl in a yellow raincoat named Six. Six, a girl perceived as the size of mice, is a mere nine years old. Surrounded by an ominous scenery, complete puzzles and avoid massive, grotesque monsters.

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Between the long string-arm “Janitor” whose face is peeled from the top like a banana and the glutinous twin chefs that inhabit the kitchen, there are tons of terrible enemies to evade.

Not only is the game a great play, but it offers a story equally as engrossing. Learn the history of Six as she attempts to escape the massive ship “Maw” alive. Encounter new foes, get out alive and try not to wet yourself

  1. Cuphead

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It would come to no surprise that our top pick for 2017 indie games would be the duck and dodging, finger shooting, cup spilling, cartoon busting, award-winning old school retro game, Cuphead.

Cuphead and Mugman found their way into the Devil’s Casino to win their sought for fortune. Greed overtook Cuphead, and without a second thought, he bet away their souls. Mugman attempted to stop him, but it was too late, as Cuphead had already lost the gamble. The Devil, being the compassionate man he is, offered a deal. Cuphead and Mugman must travel the land and collect the souls of runaway debtors. If they are successful than they may reclaim their precious souls.

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While winning multiple awards within the three months of release, Cuphead proves that you do not need modern graphics to be successful. Cuphead brings us back to the 1930’s, offering us old school art, and wacky characters that seem to have escaped Walt Disneys drawing book. Travel the map either solo or with a friend, and battle unique and challenging bosses. From a tag team of frogs to a seed shooting sunflower, you will never know what bosses will come from the world of Cuphead.

While you will have to dish out $20 to purchase Cuphead, We can ensure that it will not be a waste. With holidays approaching, Cuphead is sure to make the top of every kids Christmas list, and will be waiting under the tree in many homes.

Completely Custom Zelda Game – A Link to the Past Randomizer

After mostly disregarding what happened in the first two games, Link awakens to his uncle leaving his house. He just runs out the door, into the rainy night. Ganon has moved all items around Hyrule. You have to find all the items necessary to beat Ganon. This is your chance to be a hero. This is A Link to the Past Randomizer.

Earlier this year, a small group of programmers managed to make a program to randomize A Link to the Past. In a short time, it grew exceptionally, and the runners of this game, together with the viewers can’t be compared to other speedruns. With the ability to even change the player sprite into something else, and lower or remove the hearth beeping, runners jumped on this game.

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The original game itself is one of the Nintendo classics that a lot of people played in the past. The addition of this randomizer gave a big boost in the replay value and makes the game unique every time you generate a ROM. This is what makes running, or watching the game an interesting experience. Nobody knows what you get when you open that chests. Will it be the gloves, the hammer, or just the single rupee? Even the pendants and crystals are shuffled among themselves, so the first dungeon Eastern Palace in the original game can here be a crystal instead of the green pendant. And if you try entrance shuffle, even the dungeons and caves can be at different locations than you are used to.

Since the items are randomized, there has to be a way to make sure the game is still beatable. Else you can end up with the bow behind an enemy who requires a bow to beat it. This is where logic comes into play. The most commonly used logic is the No Glitches. This logic requires no knowledge about the game and will prevent you from getting stuck anywhere. Of course, this also makes it so that you don’t have to do dark rooms without a torch. As the name says, no glitches are required, but you can use minor glitches still in progress. This is known as a sequence break. Sequence breaks can allow you to skip certain parts or items, but can also sidetrack you. Going into a dark room without a torch is known as doing a sequence break as well. It is never required to do a dark room without a torch. Experienced runners can do this, but if you are just starting out, try to avoid it.

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Pendants are shuffled with crystals.

Because of the logic of a randomizer, you don’t always have to fully clear a pendant dungeon. The pedestal, where you normally get the master sword, can have any item of the item pool. This can also be rupees. With the items randomized, you can get the items required to access the dark world early in the game. Requirements to get into the dark world are the Moon Pearl, and Either Titans Mitts or Gloves and Hammer. Or if you are unlucky, a torch, Master Sword or Cape and a sword so you can beat Agahnim1.

In the randomizer, there are three modes, known as Standard, Open and Swordless. Standard mode is the closest to the original game. You start in Link bed and see your uncle leave the house. As you make your way to the castle and your uncle, you will get the sword. Because the first chests do not need to have a torch, there are several changes made in this. You will be given a free lightcone during the escape only. This makes the game easier for those who are just starting out, as you will have a guaranteed sword. The second mode is Open mode. Here Zelda has been rescued already and you can start at the Sanctuary or Link’s house. You do not get a guaranteed sword, and might be weaponless for a long time.

And then there is Swordless mode. Imagine a sword without swords. For this, you need the alternative weapon known as the hammer. The hammer has a shorter range and a longer delay after using it, making you more vulnerable to enemies. Because Ganon can only be damaged with a sword, and some items only accessed with a sword, there have been made changes so that a hammer can be used instead. And unlike in the other two modes, Silver arrows are available in all difficulties.

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The item you gain is randomized each time you generate a seed.

Besides, the modes are the Variations. These offer new ways to play this game. The Timed Race variation has a timer counting up. There are 20 green clocks that subtract 4 minutes from the timer, 10 blue clocks that subtract 2 minutes of the timer and 10 red clocks that add 2 minutes to the timer. When racing this mode, the one who has the best time wins the game, regardless of who beats Ganon first.

OHKO (One Hit Knock Out) mode makes it so that you can’t take a hit. If you do, you die. It is this variation that altered the logic for some items, as all items should be accessible without having to take damage. There is also a timed OHKO mode, where the OHKO mode starts after the timer reaches 0. Depending on the difficulty, you have more or less time. Here you also can find clocks, which adds time to the timer. Red Clocks, however, sets your timer to 0. This only exists in Expert mode. If you find another clock after the timer reached 0, leave the OHKO mode till the timer reaches 0 again.

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A blue mail on the ledge.

Triforce Hunt is a nod to the original Zelda game, where you had to find the triforce pieces. Here, instead of 8, you need to find more pieces, depending on the difficulty. Also, the difficulty decides how many pieces can be found. The only way to win this game is by collecting the required amount triforce pieces, not even beating Ganon beats the game.

Key-Sanity is the newest variation. All dungeon items are shuffled into the item pool as well, this includes all small keys for a dungeon. Keys found on enemies or under pots will stay there like in any other randomizer. In this mode, it is worth collecting maps and compasses. The overworld map no longer shows any dungeon information unless you collect that dungeon’s map. Compasses show how many chests you have checked in a dungeon after collecting it. It is important to know that in this mode, the dungeon music is randomized as well, so you can’t hear if it is a pendant or crystal dungeon by the music.

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All crystals have been gained.

If you became interested in try this out, you are recommended to join their discord first. There are a lot of helpful people in the community who will teach you the basics. And most runners use trackers to keep a track of there items. The recommended one for beginners is Crossproduct’s tracker, which you can find on his twitch channel. You can watch several streams, tournaments and play it to get familiar with the game. Don’t get discouraged if you can’t beat a seed the first few times. It is not that easy to beat this game when first starting out, but you will get a feel for the logic, and slowly learn all item locations. Eventually, you will finish a seed, and this can take a long time for the first finished seed. For me myself, I could not finish the first 3 seeds, the 4th seed ended due to a crash. The fifth one I tried gave me a time of 4 hours. Now, if you want to run it, or want to know more, visit their official site: http://vt.alttp.run/randomizer. It has all information you need to get started.