When it comes to PC gaming, the real gems lie in the treasure chest of thousands of indie games made by all sorts of talented developers across the world. Thanks to platforms like Steam and GOG, indie games have really taken off in recent years. And so to that end, in this piece we list 10 of the best indie games that we think you absolutely need to try. Almost certainly many titles will be left out, and we aim to cover most in time. Lastly, please note when we say indie, games like the Witcher 3 are technically also indie but considering that it has a development cycle of nearly 4-5 years and a decent budget, we’ll leave popular ones like that out of the list.

10 Best Indie Games

Firewatch

Platforms: PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows, Macintosh operating systems, Linux.

best indie games firewatch

Firewatch by Campo Santo is perhaps one of the best indie games out there. A story rich walking simulator at heart, it follows a guy undergoing a mid-life crisis. Instead of facing the problem head on, he decides to take a break and applies for a job as a forest lookout. After getting it, he and his (rather charismatic) supervisor run into all sorts of unexpected happenings in the forest, from drunk teens to dead bodies. Along the way, two get closer and amid harmless flirting they share their own burdens with each other in hopes of strengthening their individual resolves in the process. At first glance, Firewatch may seem a bit dull, but thanks to truly charming characters and a strong narrative, it’s one game that stays on your mind for quite a while.

Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice

Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows.
best indie games hellbladeOne of my personal favorites, Hellblade is one of the best sword based action games released in recent years. Developed by Ninja Theory, it has a really satisfying combat system and the Norse mythological setting compliments the other facets of the game. The visuals of the game also stand out thanks to the Unreal Engine and the dark environment makes a strong impression. Hellblade sheds light on the condition of people suffering from psychosis and does it in a nice, subtle way all the while satisfying the curiosities of any mythology geek.

Frostpunk

Platforms: Microsoft Windows.

best indie games frostpunkYou don’t see a lot of good resource building, management simulators these days other than the already popular Civ and a few other staple franchises. Frostpunk seeks to address that. Following the apocalypse and the widely used end of the world theme, Frostpunk is set in a frozen unforgiving environment where the player character is the mayor of his community. Your job is to keep the community fed and warm amid the tundra climate, building settlements, medical posts, food posts, all the while managing important resources like coal, wood and food. Some unexpected challenges also rise along the way such as paranoia and panic, common during tough times. This makes for a difficult, yet immersive simulator, every fan of the genre absolutely needs to try.

Kingdom Come Deliverance

Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows.
best indie games kingdom comeA medieval RPG based in Bohemia, Kingdom Come deliverance very well makes its mark as an RPG among masterpieces like Skyrim and Witcher 3. While a bit rough around the edges, this kickstarter backed RPG has a unique gameplay that lays a strong focus on realism and immersion. With a near perfect combat and impressive graphics, it’s perhaps not only one of the best indie games, but also one of the most intriguing RPGs till date. Although somewhat lacking in content, it very well should eat up more than 50 hours of your time.

Outlast

Platforms: PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows, Macintosh operating systems, Linux.
best indie games outlastWhenever someone discusses horror games, Outlast inevitably comes up. It’s seriously¬† disturbing setting and enemies make for a thoroughly nerve-racking experience. Developed by indie studio, The Red Barrels, it requires the more braver and persistent of players to get through. A bit weak when it comes to level design and the story, the environment and the creepy factor, more than make up for it. Outlast II favored psychological horror and story over the dark environments, so be sure to try that if you think the first Outlast was not enough.

Divinity Original Sin II

Platform: Microsoft Windows; Coming to Xbox One and PS4 soon.
best indie games Divinity original Sin IIDivinity Original Sin II is another crowdfunded game, developed by Larian studios and first launched on Steam and GOG. Original Sin II has one of the best turn based combat mechanics, and the quirky characters are an added plus point to Larain’s latest RPG. The newer Divinity game also features origin characters who further strengthen the narrative aspect of the game. Anyone who’s a fan of turn based games or RPGs in general¬† should enjoy both Divinity Original Sin I & II.

Echo

Platforms: PlayStation 4, Microsoft Windows.

best indie games EchoEcho is a unique stealth based sci-fi game. The enemies in this indie are your own reflections, or echos that take after your play style. Set in a castle spread across a whole planet, your primary objective is to revive a friend, “who shouldn’t have died”. Rest assured that proves to be a most challenging task. Navigating through mazes and fighting your own clones with an approach identical to yours is how you’ll spend most time in Echo. The AI in this game is a first of it’s kind and takes a while to get used to. Brute force is something that simply doesn’t work here, as the enemies adapt to your actions, so careful thinking goes a long way.

Valley

Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows, Linux, Macintosh operating systems.

best indie games valleyValley is another unique indie game. The player character sets out in search of something similar to the Apple of Eden that grants eternal life. However, when you reach the designated island, you are graced by remnants of a civilization long gone. With the help of a LEAF suit your goal is to find the source of the power that makes the island full of awe and wonder. Valley is a calming walking simulator, with a bit of fast paced parkour and pretty visuals. You get the ability to take or give life to the flora and fauna, and you gain and loose energy accordingly. However, whenever you die, the Valley around you does too and to avoid the game from getting over you have to make sure the entire Valley doesn’t fade away. This can be done by, “giving back the life you once took”. Sounds rather poetic doesn’t it? Well, everything aside, Valley is a really calming experience.

Gone Home

Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows, Linux, Macintosh.
best indie games gone homeGone Home is for the more patient of people. The game is set in the mid 90s, and the game itself is an exploration simulator of sorts. You need to have an eye for detail to truly appreciate this game. It’s similar to Everyone Has Gone to the Rapture in that regard. You can observe a family’s house and explore their lives by going through their belongings and property. There is no combat or puzzles in this game, it’s just exploration of the day to day lives of a middle class family from the nineties using your power of perception and curiosity.

Oxenfree

Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Microsoft Windows, Android, Linux, Macintosh operating systems, iOS.
best indie games oxenfreeOxenfree is another example of an indie that doesn’t follow the conventional video game rules. This game follows a group of teenagers as they go to an island for a beach party where things take a turn for the worse. People start going missing and all kind of weird things start happening. This is a sci-fi side scroller that leaves much to imagination and will put your morals to the test. Lots of humor, puzzles and cringy teenage romance are the ingredients of this confusing game.
So that’s our list of best indie games folks. As already mentioned above, we’ll keep on updating it with both older and newer games, so if you think we missed any, be sure to let us know.

1 COMMENT

  1. Hate walking simulators… And First-Person “can’t-fight-back” horror walking simulators… They are not games, even, they are just… walking simulators, man, come on…

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