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Indie What are your top 3 most favorite Indie games?

Heisenberg007

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I recently started replaying Hollow Knight again, and it reminded me how fantastic it is. From character design to gameplay to music to progression, the game is an absolute masterpiece.

There are hundreds and hundreds of Indie games. Not all of them are good, of course, but there are some gems that many of us may have missed out on.

Let's use this thread to put a spotlight on some of your most favorite Indie games and recommend them to others. Even better if you can briefly highlight why do you like a particular game so other forum members can see if it's something they'd like to play. I'll start:
  1. Hades (PC/PS/Xbox/NS) -- One of my all-time favorite games. Excellent build options, variety in gameplay, beautiful writing that ties the narrative with the rogue-like elements. You get new dialogues almost every time you come back, which keeps you going, and death doesn't feel like an end.
  2. Hollow Knight (PC/PS/Xbox/NS) -- Masterpiece. Character design, music, environment, story, ambiance, progression, gameplay, biomes: everything is just perfect.
  3. Disco Elysium (PC/PS/NS*/Xbox*) -- A refreshing RPG with a very unique take. No combat but the game allows you to role-play in a variety of ways. Excellent writing. And your brain talks to you!
 

Con-Z-epT

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Dead Cells

Because it is incredibly addictive and i have a huge heart for pixel-art in general. I also like roguelike games and Dead Cells manages to feel fresh even after hundreds of hours. Gameplay is very responsive and a blast to play. The amount of content that was added after launch (mostly free) is staggering. They also feature paid DLC which is really good.

Valfaris

Super varied environments and weaponry together with a stellar presentation and a cool risk reward mechanic for the overall progression. I play this at least once a year. :messenger_horns:

SOMA

The ending together with all you had to go through in the game still sends shivers down my spine after so many years and i often think about it. The gameplay is nothing groundbreaking but the atmosphere, the setting and the philosophical questions the game provokes are out of this world. Literally.
 
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Bonfires Down

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SOMA
This is all story and atmosphere for me as the gameplay is just decent. But what a story, Mark.

Darkest Dungeon
Fuck this game. Also, this game is awesome.

Nuclear Throne
Super hard but also super addictive.
 

Heisenberg007

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Dead Cells

Because it is incredibly addictive and i have a huge heart for pixel-art in general. I also like roguelike games and Dead Cells manages to feel fresh even after hundreds of hours. Gameplay is very responsive and a blast to play. The amount of content that was added after launch (mostly free) is staggering. They also feature paid DLC which is really good.

Valfaris

Super varied environments and weaponry together with a stellar presentation and a cool risk reward mechanic for the overall progression. I play this at least once a year. :messenger_horns:

SOMA

The ending together with all you had to go through in the game still sends shivers down my spine after so many years and i often think about it. The gameplay is nothing groundbreaking but the atmosphere, the setting and the philosophical questions the game provokes are out of this world. Literally.
I'm waiting for the next sale to pick up Dead Cells. I never heard of Valfaris so thank you for highlighting it (this is the exact purpose this thread can serve). I'm going to check it out!
 
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MrS

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I watched a few videos for The Binding of Isaac, but it seems as if the gameplay doesn't have any variety? I am starting to feel that I might not have seen the best representation of the game. Thoughts?
I'd agree that it definitely does give that impression in videos but you have to remember it's a game: it was made to be played, not watched. Once it gets its hooks in to you it's extremely addictive and provides a good level of challenge. I would 100% recommend it if you're thinking about picking it up.
 

Butch_0451

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Braid: It looks like a 2D platformer at first glance but is far from it. Simply put it’s one of the best puzzle games of all time and it’s tied together nicely with an ambiguous story.

Hotline Miami: High octane pixel art gameplay and to say it punishes you is putting it lightly but all of that would mean very little without it’s fantastic OST

The Witness / Soma: I’m cheating here a little bit because I couldn’t choose between the two.

-The witness is a testament to brilliant game design, there’s no hand holding and it fully trusts the player to take the helm.

-Soma is a game that boldly takes full use of the medium to tackle some of the bigger questions about “what it’s like to be?” and it succeeds.
 
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Guilty_AI

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I'll make 2 top 3s, how about that

VA_11 Hall-A
Great cyberpunk VN with excellent characters and atmosphere

Katawa Shoujo
Got attracted by its bizarre concept and stayed for the characters and story.

Undertale
I think most people are already tired of hearing about this game, but its just that good.

==//==

Cruelty Squad
Don't be fooled by its presentation, game is has very well thought out mechanics and levels. Just a lot of fun to play in general

The Talos Principle
I liked this one more for its themes. Very well delivered story with great atmosphere.

Crosscode
An overall excellently polished game. Theres just a lot to talk about here so i'll just leave a video.
 

Heisenberg007

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Braid: What looks like a 2D platformer at first glance is far from it. Simply put it’s one of the best puzzle games of all time with an ambiguous story.
I am waiting for the remastered edition to pick it up. It looked gorgeous.
Hotline Miami: High octane pixel art gameplay and to say it punishes you is putting it lightly but all of that would mean very little without it’s fantastic OST
NGL, I got my ass handed in HM.
The Witness / Soma: I’m cheating here a little bit because I couldn’t choose between the two.
The more the merrier. Third time I've seen Soma on this list already. I think I'll finally play it!
 
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Heisenberg007

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I'll make 2 top 3s, how about that

VA_11 Hall-A
Great cyberpunk VN with excellent characters and atmosphere

Katawa Shoujo
Got attracted by its bizarre concept and stayed for the characters and story.

Undertale
I think most people are already tired of hearing about this game, but its just that good.

==//==

Cruelty Squad
Don't be fooled by its presentation, game is has very well thought out mechanics and levels. Just a lot of fun to play in general

The Talos Principle
I liked this one more for its themes. Very well delivered story with great atmosphere.

Crosscode
An overall excellently polished game. Theres just a lot to talk about here so i'll just leave a video.
Very different list. I haven't heard at least three of these games (at least I can't remember them). I'll check them out.

I also have Undertale downloaded and installed. I just haven't started it yet; I think I should.
 
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I have a bad habit of always trying the latest in-fashion indie game, but they rarely stick with me.

Of the ones that resonated the most with me I would probably have to say my favorites are Hyper Light Drifter, Guacamelee, and My Friend Pedro.
 
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Heisenberg007

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I have a bad habit of always trying the latest in-fashion indie game, but they rarely stick with me.

Of the ones that resonated the most with me I would probably have to say my favorites are Hyper Light Drifter, Guacamelee, and My Friend Pedro.
My Friend Pedro had super fun gameplay. The story was absurd though lol. Didn't understand it at all.

I have Guacamelee but haven't played more than an hour or so. I need to get back to it. The Mexican humor was so good.
 

Mozzarella

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Why top 3, can i do top 5?

- Outer Wilds
This is probably my favorite one, its one of my top 10 games of the decade and on my list of top favorite games ever made, the game is a space mystery puzzle game and its so good and interesting, the music, the atmosphere and the story are all top notch, it also has some of the best moments in a video game for me, some were scary and some were good sense of discovery. Absolute masterpiece.

- Hollow Knight
a very popular metroidvania, it was one of the best indie games, its challenging enough and the music and the world design was superb, its the dark souls of indie games, yeah lol. :messenger_tears_of_joy:

- Pathologic 2
One of the hardest and most oppressive games i played, this is art-house for games, the story is weird but its very interesting and it has similar to outer wilds a puzzle like story where you connect the dots, the gameplay is very clunky but i believe its part of the game, its a unique game with great writing and very strong atmosphere.

- Amnesia: The Dark Descent
This is one of my favorite horror games of all time, its also maybe the scariest game i have ever played, I love everything about it, literally everything, the story is interesting, the way its told i liked very much, the gothic tone is good, loved the castle setting in Prussia, the puzzles are neat and the music is fantastic, one of the best indie games ever made.

- Cuphead
Nearly a flawless game, timeless art direction, fantastic soundtrack and challenging gameplay, i had a lot of fun with it, its probably not as good as the top 4 above it but i had to include it because its well made from all the angles. This game will age well.

Honorable mentions:
Enter the Gungeon (Best bullet hell game, its tough and addicting)
Dead Cells (great mix of platformer and metroidvania, not as good as hollow knight but still one of the best rouglelikes)
Inside (a great puzzle game with nice art and good atmosphere)
SOMA (thought-provoking game with great story and immersive setting, i prefer amnesia over it but its great work by frictional too )
 
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Sensei

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  • Hollow Knight: when I first played it I experienced the same feeling I had when I was playing Dark Souls for the first time. I also love its art style and soundtrack. Patiently waiting for Silksong
  • Return of the Obra Dinn: I was blown away by how the whole story is presented and how progression is handled. I really enjoyed the art style, but I get why it could be a hit or miss for many.
  • Slay the Spire: I invested much more time than I expected on this one. At first I almost dismissed the game, thinking it was too simple and random. But then it started to click and, without even realizing it, I was basically absorbed for weeks
Also thanks to this thread for remembering me I have so many of these games in my backlog and for letting me discover some new ones.
 
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Heisenberg007

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So far :

Slay The Spire

Hollow Knight

FTL Faster Than Light


Constantly looking for indie, but for some reason I am slightly hesitant. Cuphead, Hades, Undertale, Outer Wilds and Disco Elysium are on my radar and I will probably grab those games when they go on PSN sale. Have heard great things
I can wholeheartedly recommend Hades.
 
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Heisenberg007

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  • Hollow Knight: when I first played it I experienced the same feeling I had when I was playing Dark Souls for the first time. I also love its art style and soundtrack. Patiently waiting for Silksong
  • Return of the Obra Dinn: I was blown away by how the whole story is presented and how progression is handled. I really enjoyed the art style, but I get why it could be a hit or miss for many.
  • Slay the Spire: I invested much more time than I expected on this one. At first I almost dismissed the game, thinking it was too simple and random. But then it started to click and, without even realizing it, I was basically absorbed for weeks
Also thanks to this thread for remembering me I have so many of these games in my backlog and for letting me discover some new ones.
I've heard good things about Slay the Spire, but it's a card game, right? I've never liked card games, so I'm not sure if it is for me or not. But it is on PS Now, so I may give it a try.
 

Sensei

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I've heard good things about Slay the Spire, but it's a card game, right? I've never liked card games, so I'm not sure if it is for me or not. But it is on PS Now, so I may give it a try.
Yeah it's basically a card game, but with some additional spins. It's quite different from the likes of Heartstone or Magic though.
Maybe you could watch some gameplays first to get the basic idea behind the game.
 

Graciaus

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Just want to mention Siralim. I've played that series more then all other indies combined.
 

SmurfMustard

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The Witness
One of my all time favorites. The way it teaches you the rules felt perfect for me. One of the few games the made me feel smart, then dumb and then smart again.

Fez
Great game if you love taking notes to help you figure things out. Lots and lots of interesting puzzle ideas.

Firewatch
I loved this for the art style and the incredible voice acting. I could hike in this world for hours and listen to Henry and Delilah.

Honorable mentions:
Graveyard Keeper, The Messenger, Crosscode, Katana Zero and Dandara.
 

MasterDerico

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Only 3 ? Damn...! Ok;

Cuphead (indie with the AAA feel)
Slain
Icey

(Im not counting Indies that have physical discs, like Sor4, Fight'n Rage or Phantom Breaker Battlegrounds...only the "digital only" ones)
 
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Perrott

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Out now:
  • Broforce
  • FTL: Faster Than Light
  • Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number
  • Human Fall Flat
  • Nuclear Throne
  • Va-11 Hall-A
Coming soon (but I've already played them during the latest Steam demo festival):
  • Chinatown Detective Agency
  • Ravenous Devils
  • Storyteller
  • Strange Horticulture
  • Tavern Master
  • Wartales
 
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NeverYouMind

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I don't usually dip into this vaguely defined category, but I have had a good time with these titles:

Cave Story
A charming side-scroller about an amnesiac kid exploring the caverns of a fantasy island floating in the sky.


Hope Lake
A hidden object game about a detective investigating a sighting of a missing woman out in the sticks.


Steel Sword Story
An action game about a disgraced knight returning to a kingdom in ruin to save the princess.




P.S. I do not know where Tetris and M.U.G.E.N. fall with respect to indies, but I have put even more hours into those.
 
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anab0lic36

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  • Slay the spire
  • Celeste
  • Spelunky
Don't know if I can rank them, but all of these I consider to be top tier game design.

Quite a few in my backlog, some of which mentioned here already that I'd like to find the time for... someday.
 
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Heisenberg007

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Blasphemous
Dead Cells
Axiom Verge

Also fond of Hollow Knight, The binding of Isaac, Oxen free, Vigil the longest night and the Ori-games. I love indies.
This list looks the most like my taste. I love Hollow Knight and Ori. I'm waiting for sale on Blasphemous, Dead Cells, and Axiom Verge.

After the recommendation in this thread, I have also marked The Binding of Isaac and will pick it up the next time it's discounted.
 
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Heisenberg007

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- Enter the Gungeon
- Steamworld Dig
- Hades
I so wanted to like Enter the Gungeon, but it didn't click with me (in the brief time I played it). I didn't understand how the progression was supposed to work (unlike how it was laid out so clearly in Hades), and the gameplay didn't show variety.

Please tell me it gets better? Also, any video or resources I can look into that demonstrate the full potential of the game?
 

Punished Miku

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Mr. Shifty
Hong Kong Massacre
Hades
Celeste
Children of Morta
Huntdown
Slay the Spire
Into the Breach
Blasphemous
Valfaris
The Messenger
Cyber Shadow
Way of the Passive Fist
Velocity 2x
Snake Pass

I'll stop there.