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E3: 7 Indie Games That Show Promise

Usually these are AAA games that are given excessive attention during E3. This, however isn’t the case for this year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo where publishers known for AAA titles have been involved in the production of indie games. This should come as no surprise in the era of crowdfunding and programmes supporting indie developers.

Below you will find a compilation of 7 indie games that had a presence during E3 2016 and are worth keeping an eye on in the future.

FE

EA has announced the release of Fe – a third-person indie game based on the exploration of a unique world – a forest full of geometric shapes and dark colours. The game offers an unusual experience for players during which they will explore the ecosystem and communicate with its creatures by learning their language through songs. In the game you play as a young fox creature discovering the surrounding forest full of mystery. The focus is on the atmosphere and exploration rather than on the plot. Watching the trailer, you can see that the game is totally different from other indie titles.

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Fe is being developed by a small dev studio Zoink from Sweden. The game is part of EA’s programme to support small indie studios in the game development and marketing activities. I am eager to see what comes out of this.

Release date and platforms have yet to be confirmed.

VAMPYR

It is another indie game developed by Dontnod Entertainment whose previous project was Life is Strange. The upcoming action role-playing game will be released for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in 2017.

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The original spelling derives from Hungarian, vampyr referring to a 18th century man accused of feeding on human flood. The player turns into a vampire and has to survive drinking human blood in 20th century England. The main protagonist – Dr. Jonathan Reid is half-man and half-vampire who needs to come to terms with his double nature. Torn between the Hippocratic Oath and the vampiric nature, Jonathan seeks to satisfy his bloodthirsty nature. It is worthy to note that players doesn’t have to kill people to survive, there are different options and ways around it. However, if you don’t kill, you won’t unlock new abilities…

BLOODSTAINED: RITUAL OF THE NIGHT

is an upcoming project by Koji Igarashi who created Castlevania: Symphony of the Night and its many sequels. The game will be available for Microsoft Windows, OS X, Linux, Play Station 4, Wii U, and Xbox One in March 2017. To gain funds for the development, Igarashi resorted to Kickstarter. Having raised more than $5.5 million from supporters – much more than he expected, he set out to work on it. This was the one of the heavily supported games in the Kickstarter history.

The main protagonist – Miriam a young orphan who is afflicted by an alchemist’s curse needs to find a cure to recover. The curse turns her body into crystal and the only way to survive for her is to explore a castle and find a creature who suffered from the same curse. Being a spiritual successor to Castlevania games series, Bloodstained is a show of 2D platforming with exploration and combat themes in a dark fantasy world.

ABZU

Abzû is an upcoming adventure and exploration video game scheduled for a release on August 2, 2016. It is designed for Play Station 4 and Microsoft Windows platforms. The game is founded by Matt Nava – the art director of Flower and Journey.

The name of the game refers to the ancient Mesopotamian concept of the primeval sea, (abzu can be translated as “ocean of wisdom.”) In this swimming simulator you are a diver exploring the beauty of the ocean and interacting with the wildlife peacefully. The only violence is caused by shoals of fish showing predatory behaviour at times. At first sight, the seascape appears to be mild and tranquil but as you dive deeper you may experience peril. The deep oceanic areas and coral reefs have been modeled with an unprecedented detail, giving you insight into the mysteries of the underwater life. Abzû is linear and contains elements of RPGs (e.g. the option of upgrading your equipment.)

WE HAPPY FEW

We Happy Few is an indie survival horror video game developed and published by Compulsion Games. The release date hasn’t been yet confirmed. The game is scheduled for a release on Linux, Microsoft Windows, OS X and Xbox One and funded by supporters on Kickstarter. We Happy Few incorporates the elements of the British literature – A Clockwork Orange, Brave New World, or Monty-Python. However, the biggest influence was made by the dystopian film Brazil.

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This survival horror revolves around a dystopian world where everyone is controlled by a pill called “Joy”. It has the power of changing people’s minds. Any disobedience can be severely punished. Arthur Hastings – the protagonist experiences the gloomy reality of the world without Joy.

HOW WE SOAR

The game will be announced by Penny Black Studios and released later this year for PlayStation VR. The player flies with a giant Phoenix and explores the papercraft world around them. Seated on the mysterious creature you swoop, glide and dive ino the air, being in full control of the flight. Where you fly is completely up to you! An interesting element of the game is the interaction with the environment. As you fly by, you paint the surrounding landscape and rediscover it. The whole journey is like exploring the mind of the artist who envisioned the connected worlds of fantasy and reality.

INSIDE

It is an adventure video game published in July this year by independent studio Playdead. It was designed for Microsoft Windows and Xbox One. Being economic with colours, the game remains a spiritual ad visual successor to Playdead’s previous title Limbo. Inside was given the title of the “Best Independent Game” of E3 2016.

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The game was among most anticipated releases this year. In this puzzle-platformer, the player is put in the role of a young boy living in a black, monochromatic world solving the puzzles and avoiding death. His mission is to stop mind control experiments conducted on humans. It all depends on you whether he succeeds or not.
Written By Heidi Dilaurentis

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Discussion

2 thoughts on “E3: 7 Indie Games That Show Promise

  1. I got to play ABZU multiple times, and it’s is absolutely stunning. So in love with it. I also want to get my hands on We Happy Few. Great post!

    Have you ever thought about sharing your work on other sites? I’d be willing to help you get more views if you’re interested. Email me- tyler@nowloading.com

    Posted by PlayerOneTyler | August 2, 2016, 9:45 pm

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