Indie games have really come into their own in the last 10 years of gaming. Small shops have been able to produce games that are fun, challenging and innovative without breaking the bank. This week I’ll list 5 of my favorite Indie games which can be purchased for $20 or less.
1.) Battleblock Theater
Developmer: The Behemoth
Platforms: Xbox 360 / Xbox One, Windows, Linux
Battleblock Theater is a brilliant platformer developed by the indie great, “The Behemoth”. You may recognize this developer but if you don’t, they are the developers of Castle Crashers. Battleblock Theater packs many hours of fun, loads of character customization options, and hilarious commentary into a relatively small price tag. Your adventures take you on a journey through a jail of crazy people on a quest to free your friends and you will laugh til it hurts. It can also be enjoyed with up to three friends. All of these things roll into a charming platformer that you will spend hours playing.
Platforms: Windows, Linux
Hammerwatch feels like a mix between SmashTV and Diablo. It’s a top-down procedurally generated dungeon crawler with a hack-n-slash feel. Although the game features simplistic graphics (which I like) the controls and hidden easter-eggs that you can find in the game do not disappoint. There are six playable classes, each with their own weapons and super abilities. You earn money by cracking open pots and barrels and by killing monsters. This money can be spent on upgrades to make your character stronger. The game has immense replay value due largely to the steam workshop that is integrated into the game. There are many player created levels and more get added every day! Hammerwatch also supports local and online multiplayer which makes the game even more enjoyable. NOTE: I highly recommend that you play this game with a controller. If you don’t have the steam controller or an XBox controller you can program a PS4 controller to work with your computer. I’ll cover that in a future blog 🙂
3.) Castle Crashers Remastered
Developer: The Behemoth
Platforms: Xbox One, Windows
OK so this game may not really even qualify as an “Indie” any more due to all of it’s fame and glory but I feel that not adding it to this list would be amiss. Castle Crashers is a lovable platformer created by “The Behemoth” and it is a massive game. Seriously. If you are looking for the maximum bang for your buck, check these stats out – The Game boasts 84 collectible weapons, 28 orbs and 31 playable characters. Castle Crasher’s story pits up to four knights against an evil wizard who has captured four princesses. The players must journey through the game world, capture the princesses and get back the king’s crystal from the evil magus. Along the way the players will encounter several different monster types which present challenges. The game has no shortage of comedy and memorable moments. In addition to this, the newly remastered version of the game adds high res graphics and a brand new game mode. Since this is a platformer you will want to have a controller handy for the Windows version of this game.
4.) Rogue Legacy
Developer: Cellar Door Games
Platforms: Xbox One, PS3, PS4, PS Vita, Windows, Linux, OS X
Rogue Legacy is a platformer where you not only play a hero but his entire lineage. The game is spent navigating a castle loaded with tough minions, hidden passageways, traps and bosses. Once your character dies you are then able to choose an heir. This heir may have a disability (short, color-blind, inerted vision, etc) which can add a whole new level of difficulty to the game. After playing several generations you will amass enough money to afford upgrades which will make your journey a little easier. Eventually your characters become strong enough to challenge the final boss for a chance to complete the game. The sheer difficulty of this game will provide hours of gameplay and the disabilities that your heirs can have make it quite an entertaining journey. I did find that some of the disabilities were more of a nuisance than a challenge but overall this game is certainly worth the money.
5.) Rocket League
Developer: Psyonix, Inc.
Platforms: Xbox One, PS4, Windows
Rocket League is one of those games for me that I thought, “I’m bored. I’ve got 10 minutes to kill so I’ll give this a shot” and before I knew it, 3 hours went by. I don’t like racing games, I’m not a soccer fan and still I could play this game for hours. The feeling of scoring a winning goal or blocking a shot at just the right moment is so satisfying. There are a variety of different game modes (hockey, basketball, soccer) and endless customization options. The game supports local multiplayer online mode as well (ie – two players locally joining an online queue). It is the steepest price on the list at $19.99 but I feel that the price is fair considering the amount of enjoyment you’ll get.