My, oh, my, are there ever a lot of indies nowadays so allow me to introduce you to 8 vibrant fun-filled offerings that you may enjoy.
PHOGS! Review Xbox One ★★★★☆
Once in a while, an indie comes out that may not make sense but is inherently a ton of fun and with that in mind, here's PHOGS!
PHOGS! is a weird and cute game where you and a friend control a thing that has a dog head at each end. If you remember the Nickelodeon show CatDog then that's what this is except it's 2 dogs. 2016's Push Me Pull You had a very similar premise. Anyway, the gameplay is kind of like last year's excellent Wattam as you primarily just wander around and do miscellaneous things in order to progress and its controls are like Biped in that you have to help each other traverse the environments. Doing things like guiding balls by hooking up a series of fans and discovering secrets is a ton of fun and although you can play it solo, it's one of the best co-op games that I've played all year so definitely play with a chum. It may not make much sense and can be quite trippy but that only makes for a funnier and more enjoyable campaign. It's quite long, too, with oodles of lengthy stages that are set within a few distinct themed worlds.
Without a doubt, PHOGS! is one of the best co-op games released this year so if you enjoy gaming with a pal, you'll want to play this.PHOGS! gameplay video → Similar game: Biped
Out of Space: Couch Edition Review Xbox One ★★★★☆
Managing a space station sounds rather boring but it certainly isn't when aliens are trying to take over so it's time to frantically clean.
Out of Space: Couch Edition is yet another co-op game and this one has up to 4 players scramble in order to minimize an alien infestation while powering up their space station. It kind of plays like Overcooked in that you control your characters in an overhead perspective while performing tasks like watering plants, sweeping up alien goop, and setting up furniture. Meanwhile, you have to rest whenever you get tired or else you'll fall asleep on the spot and you must also eat in order to not bite the dust. The ultimate goal is to provide power to every room via batteries and the hectic blend of dealing with the aliens and their goop while setting up your space station to be as efficient as possible provides one exciting gameplay formula, especially considering the fact that the layout is procedurally generated. Even though I adore Overcooked, I must admit that I'm currently itching to play this more as it boasts one rewarding gameplay loop.
As far as frantic co-op games go, Out of Space: Couch Edition is great and will have you and your gaming chums entertained for hours.Out of Space: Couch Edition gameplay video → More Great Multiplayer Indie Games
Slide Stars Review Xbox One ★★★☆☆
We may not be able to go to water parks right now but Slide Stars is here to provide some trendy summer fun. Let's get toobin'!
First of all, Slide Stars features a cast of real-world e-celebrities and I honestly haven't heard of a single one of them but if you have then I'm sure that'll make playing this much more personable. Anyway, its gameplay has you slide around intricate water-filled stages and you must take advantage of your momentum in order to leap over chasms as you collect all sorts of pick-ups and try to cross the finish line before your friends. This is surprisingly fun to do and the colourful graphics definitely make it a bright and cheery game. On the downside, the controls take a lot of getting used to as you'll likely stumble through levels while uncontrollably flipping yourself around at the start. I wish they were handled more intuitively but it's still an enjoyable game with a lot of courses and collectibles to discover.
If you're a fan of any of the social media personalities in Slide Stars then you'll have a great time sliding and flipping through its levels.Slide Stars gameplay video →
Petal Crash Review Switch ★★★★☆
Here's a puzzle game that will have you frantically sliding tiles in order to outsmart your opponent so get ready to crash some petals.
Petal Crash is one of those grid-based puzzle games where whenever you slide a tile, it moves as far as it can travel. The goal is to smash a tile into one of the same colour and once they match, they explode and potentially send any attached tiles flying which can result in chains. As you can already tell, there's a lot of strategy involved and while you play, you'll become better and better as you think of more intricate strategic maneuvers. These kinds of puzzlers are my favourite and I absolutely love Petal Crash's gameplay as it isn't quite like anything I've ever played before. You'll love every second of Petal Crash whether you're taking on story mode by yourself or competing against a friend. Throw in a cast of charming characters and delightful audio and you're left with one must-have puzzle game.
Competitive puzzle games don't get much better than Petal Crash. From its strategic gameplay to its charm, it's the complete package.Petal Crash gameplay video → More Switch Puzzle Games
Wildfire Review Xbox One ★★★★☆
2D platformers come in many varieties yet few offer stealth gameplay that actually works well and with that in mind, here's Wildfire.
Wildfire is a stealth-based 2D platformer where you play as a witch and as you progress, you'll learn spells that allow you to do things like gather and throw fire, freeze water, and manipulate the earth. Working through the levels tasks you with avoiding enemy guards which you can do either stealthily by whistling at strategic positions and hiding in grass or aggressively as you set them on fire and hope for the best. This formula will keep you on the edge of your seat as you set up elaborate sequences of events and laugh whenever you see enemies get snagged in one of your traps. You can also play cooperatively with a friend but doing so doesn't feature any distinct mechanics so it's one of those rare games that's actually more fun to play solo. Overall, it's a brilliant game and I recommend it.
The many distinct scenarios within Wildfire are great fun to master no matter how you approach them and it's impressively funny, too.Wildfire gameplay video →
Captain Sabertooth and the Magic Diamond Review Switch ★★★☆☆
A 2D platformer that stars a boy aspiring to become a pirate sounds interesting so let's check this swashbuckling adventure out.
Apparently, Captain Sabertooth and the Magic Diamond is a Norwegian kids' movie and it now has a video game adaptation. Although I'm not familiar with the film at all, I had some fun with this colourful and lighthearted adventure. It plays like a typical 2D platformer where you explore areas while discovering gold coins and slashing your saber at enemies and there's a lot of variety thrown in for good measure as well. For example, you'll fire a cannon at ships, row down a river on a log, play a goofy pinball game, and swim. However, not everything is handled as solidly as the 2D platforming so you're left with a mostly humdrum experience that ranges from mildly enjoyable to rather tedious. On the plus side, its graphics are impressively detailed and each environment looks absolutely fantastic.
You may not have heard of the film that it's based on but Captain Sabertooth and the Magic Diamond is a solid and mostly fun platformer.Captain Sabertooth and the Magic Diamond gameplay video →
Dadish Review Switch ★★★★☆
When you think of a dad, you probably picture a human but radishes can be dads, too (I think), so here's the very silly Dadish.
Before discussing its gameplay, let me just say that Dadish has some of the best humour that I've ever seen in an indie game. You play as a radish dad who's on a mission to rescue his kids and whenever you find one, he always has a silly conversation with it that more often than not, made me laugh out loud. It's such pitch-perfect dry humour and totally up my alley. In fact, it reminded me of a teacher I had who would casually say jokes in his monotone voice that I found hilarious but no one else laughed because I was probably the only one listening. Anyway, Dadish is a simple 2D platformer where all you do is try to reach the end of each of its many stages and there are boss fights, too. Everything is straightforward yet challenging and will keep you hooked until you gather every single kid.
Dadish's cute and colourful graphics go hand-in-hand with its simple platforming formula to make one hilarious indie that's great fun.Dadish gameplay video → More 2D Platformers on Switch
Destropolis Review Switch ★★★☆☆
Fending off an ever-growing horde of enemies as you become increasingly more powerful can be a blast but is Destropolis any fun?
Destropolis simply has you control a blue diamond as you shoot at countless red objects that desperately want to end your existence. For starters, it has fantastic stylish visuals that blew me away at first as everything comes to life which makes the threat feel even more real. As you play, you can collect different weapons and power-ups and you'll also regularly level-up which allows you to select a new boost. However, after playing for a handful of minutes, you'll end up levelling up way too often which constantly disrupts the gameplay flow. On top of that, you can easily be overcome with enemies and perish within a second or 2 which makes the health meter kind of feel useless. It's still a very fun game, though, and one that makes climbing the online leaderboards quite an enjoyable challenge.
As a simple twin-stick score-chaser, Destropolis gets the job done but its more annoying aspects will make you scratch your head.Destropolis gameplay video → More twin-stick shooters