As we approach the end of the year, it is fun to look at what next year looks like. What are the high-profile indie games coming down the pike? What PC games will be making their way to the Nintendo ecosystem? Here is a list of everything we saw during the Nintendo Indie World Showcase for 2021, starting with new game announcements.
A Look Into the Future
Sea of Stars
The developers that brought you The Messenger announced a new title called Sea of Stars. This new title takes place in the same world as their previous release but does not require knowledge of the first game’s story to enjoy this one according to the creators. Sea of Stars is a turn-based role-playing game that takes clear inspiration from the classic SNES title, Chrono Trigger. Not only is the game visually paying homage to that title, but some of the music was also composed by Yasunori Mitsuda, who did the music for Chrono Trigger and Chrono Cross. Currently, the game is slated for release holiday 2022. Check out the announcement trailer below.
Aliisha: The Oblivion of Twin Goddesses
The second new release of the show was Aiisha: The Oblivion of Twin Goddesses. This puzzle adventure game focuses on playing twin sisters. The game can be played alone or with local coop, and each of the characters plays differently. It looks to utilize the functionality of both the motion control and touch control options available on the switch to have the player navigate the challenges contained therein. Aiisha: The Oblivion of Twin Goddesses is set to release in spring of 2022..
Another game that looked rather fun was Loco Motive. Brought to you by the indie studio Robust Games, this point-and-click adventure game takes place on a train in the 1930s. The game boasts 3 fully-voiced playable characters, and throwback pixel art reminiscent of classic games of the genre such as the early Monkey Island titles. We should expect to be able to pick this one up in summer 2022. Watch the announcement trailer below.
From the developer that brought you the games Coffee Talk and What Comes After, we are getting a new game called Afterlove EP. The gameplay is a combination of visual novel and rhythm game. Taking place in Jakarta, Indonesia, the narrative revolves around the protagonist trying to pick up the pieces of his life after the tragic loss of a partner, and his attempt to move on. The game boasts multiple different endings based on the choices made by the player throughout the story. The release date right now is the summer of 2022. The announcement trailer also showed off its hand-sketched art style and you can see it here.
Endling: Extinction is Forever
Endling: Extinction is Forever attempts to pull on the player’s heartstrings with a setting focused on the effects of uncontrolled climate change by putting the player in charge of a mother fox trying to protect her cubs. Based on the announcement trailer, choices made by the player may affect how many of these cubs, if any, survive the journey. The game will contain stealth elements as you adventure through the post-apocalyptic environments while trying to hunt smaller prey without getting eaten. Coming to the eShop in the spring of 2022, you can see the announcement trailer for yourself below.
River City Girls 2
River City Girls 2 begins immediately where the previous game left off. The game continues the trajectory of the classic River City Ransom series as a modern beat-em-up brawler. There are six playable characters each with a unique fighting style and upgrade path. You can play the game alone or with a friend either locally or online. Below you can check out the announcement trailer and listen to a piece of the soundtrack which was a highlight of the first game as well.
Gerda: A Flame in Winter
From the studio that brought you Life is Strange and Life is Strange 2, DONTNOD has announced Gerda: A Flame in Winter. Set for release in 2022, Gerda is a psychological thriller with light RPG elements set during the German occupation of Denmark during World War 2. Touting player choices and meaningful exploration, you can see the announcement trailer here.
We only got a glimpse of the game Baby Storm during a sizzle-reel of back-to-back clips of trailers, but what we did see looked chaotic. Presumably, the player is put in the position of managing a group of out-of-control babies in hectic-paced scenario-based gameplay that appears to have a similar energy to something like Overcooked. Footage of this game exists from 2020 so this isn’t a new announcement, but we now have a release date of January 21, 2022, which is right around the corner. If you want to see some of the craziness for yourself, here’s a trailer.
OlliOlli World was originally supposed to be released this month but has been pushed back to February 8th, 2022. This third game in the OlliOlli franchise has a new art style and new obstacles to overcome but aims to maintain the same tight gameplay. For a hint at the vibe this game is going for, note that it takes place in a world called “Radlandia” and the character’s ultimate destination is “Gnarvana.” The conference gave us a new gameplay trailer you can see here.
Everything Old is New Again
The Switch is known for being a great place to reexperience independently developed PC game ports or to see them for the first time. Because of this, the Indie World showcase attempts to highlight a smattering of games you may have heard of before but may have not tried out yet. What titles in this vein do we have to look forward to in 2022? Here was what we saw.
Parkasaurus is a bright-colored dinosaur park management simulation game. Originally released in August 2020, it is a smaller studio’s take on making your own version of Jurassic Park, but unlike the Jurassic World games, it has a greater focus on park management mechanics. Dubbed a “dinosaur tycoon” game, Parkasaurus makes its way to the eShop in spring of 2022.
Don’t Starve Together
If you had put a gun to my head, I would have sworn Don’t Starve Together was already available on the Nintendo Switch. I would have been wrong. This 5-year-old cooperative action survival game by Klei Entertainment drops on the Switch in Spring 2022. If you haven’t had a chance to check out this expansion to the original Don’t Starve, you might want to pick it up.
This action RPG came out this summer and will be coming to Nintendo Switch next summer. Part Bloodbourne and part Metroid, Grime is a 2d combat-focused game that aims to maintain the difficulty of a From Software game but eschews some of its more punishing mechanics. While it may not be as challenging as some of its inspirations, it still takes place in a dark world with a brutal atmosphere and disturbing enemy design.
Behind the Frame: The Finest Story
With an anime art style, Behind the Frame: The Finest Story allows the player to participate in the emotional story of an artist. As you create art, solve puzzles, and deal with your neighbors, you unravel something deeper and more meaningful. You can play Behind the Frame on Switch in Spring 2022.
Last Christmas, OMOCAT gave us the role-playing game OMORI. It had an art style that resembled Earthbound and Undertale with added hand-drawn and colored flair. Additionally, the game contained a dark enough narrative to contain a thematic trigger warning during the showcase presentation. With over 26,000 reviews on Steam and an “Overwhelming Positive” consensus, it will likely continue to please any interested parties who pick up the title when it comes to Switch next spring.
Everyone loves the surprise of finding out a cool-looking game is available already. Press conferences help get players excited about interesting new titles, and they help developers get extra exposure. The Nintendo World Indie Showcase gave us 3 such announcements.
In Dungeon Munchies you play a dead man who was brought back to life. Your mentor, Simmer the “Necrochef,” teaches you the ropes of magical cooking. The player will cycle between segments of 2D action where they have to kill food-based enemies and craft their corpses into the food you will use to further power yourself up. Dungeon Munchies is another example of a PC game being adapted for Switch, but this one is available right now.
Let’s Play Oink Games
Oink Games is the name of an actual, physical board and card game company. Now they have decided to bring a selection of their titles to the digital market as well. You can pick up this collection of board games in the store today. Currently included games are:
- Deep Sea Adventure
- A Fake Artist Goes to NY
- Moon Adventure
During the showcase, Oink also indicated more games may be coming in the future as well. Let’s Play Oink Games supports both online and local multiplayer and can support up to 8 players.
In the acclaimed 2020 stealth puzzle adventure, Timelie, players control a little girl and her cat in what the developers called, “cooperative play, for one.” In the game, you can move time forward and backward as if you were using a media player. Both the full game and a free demo launched for Switch on December 15th.
Chicory: A Colorful Tale
Last, but not least, you can now purchase Chicory: A Colorful Tale from the eShop. Chicory was very well-received when it first dropped earlier this year. Kenzie Du awarded it a rating of 8.5 out of 10, and praised the game for its visual and auditory expressiveness. Interested players who weren’t able to pick up the game on Playstation or PC when it was originally released now have another chance to enjoy its offerings.