It's Women's History Month so it's an appropriate time to check out some fantastic indies with impressive heroines. These chums may not be as iconic as Lara Croft but there's no denying that they kick ass so let's get straight to the games!
Dandara isn't quite what you'd expect from a Metroidvania game as you don't run around a massive map while slicing up enemies. Instead, you simply hop between surfaces and there's no need to worry about gravity because you can cling to walls and ceilings without issue. The campaign is brutally difficult and it has an abstract story that went right over my head but when you're done with Dandara's adventure, you'll be satisfied that you mastered such a unique and challenging experience.
If you're in the market for a less abstract offering then the straightforward action-intense Bleed 2 is a worthwhile run 'n' gun game. You play as Wryn, the greatest (and only) hero left in the world. The evil alien invaders don't stand a chance with her bullet-reflecting and air-dodging skills in play. The best part of the whole adventure are the dozens of boss fights that'll force you to blast away and evade like only the best heroes do. All of that being said, definitely check out the original Bleed before diving into the sequel as we thought it was actually a superior game overall. Either way, you're sure to love Wryn's 2D action-filled universe.
Aegis Defenders is by far our favourite game on this list. It combines tower defense and 2D Metroidvania mayhem with cooperative gameplay in such a seamless and fulfilling way. You play as Clu, a curious and charming girl who travels with her grandpa to uncover the mysteries of ancient ruins. Her skills as an engineer allow her to deploy traps for encroaching enemies and her prowess with firearms make her an unstoppable force against the hordes of dastardly creatures. I highly recommend this one so definitely check it out!
From a Ruinhunter to a mechanic, Robin (the star of Iconoclasts) is no slouch when it comes to kicking ass. Shooting enemies with her awesome stun gun only to home in and give their noggins a few whacks with her trusty wrench is so much fun. However, Iconoclasts shines brightest in its unique and intriguing puzzles that usually task you with figuring out the intricacies of large and complex rooms. When you factor in its rewarding boss fights, unique environments, and colourful visuals; you're left with a must-have 2D adventure.
An evil organisation is invading June's beloved city to drain it of its resources and that's something that she just won't stand for. This Defender-style twin-stick shooter is super-tough but incredibly rewarding once you become accustomed to its unique weapon system, challenging stages, and relentless enemies. Plus, you can play it with a friend and that's always cool. Anyway, the arcade progression is sure to frustrate casual gamers but if you're hardcore then this is one old-school shooter that you'll want to download.
The Legend of Dark Witch 3
The Legend of Dark Witch is one of my favourite indie game series. It encapsulates what retro 2D action games were all about while also offering a colourful and vibrant world filled with charming characters. Although this latest iteration was a significant letdown for me, I still had a ton of fun working my way through the challenging campaign and meeting all the new characters. If you own a 3DS and haven't played any of these delightful games yet then definitely check out the original game first. Zizou will be glad you did!
I must say, that's a fantastic collection of indies! Have you played any of these games? If so, let's chat in the comments below.