Indie games have always been a balancing act on the other end of the spectrum of AAA titles made with several million dollars. AAA games usually refer to projects and titles in the gaming world in which the publishers have invested a lot of money. With big budgets, the developers get a lot of freedom and opportunity to fine-tune their products. However, due to a number of reasons, these efforts can sometimes fall short of gamers' expectations.
Indie games usually do not enjoy the big budgets that one can associate with AAA titles. This is often replaced by hardwork and dedication on the part of the developers to turn their projects into brilliant games that will be cherished by fans for years to come. The five names on this list are some of the best of the lot and can easily match the very best of AAA games in terms of quality.
Top 5 indie games that can easily match the quality of good AAA games
5) Stardew Valley
Stardew Valley helped fill the niche created among PC gamers from the lack of Harvest Moon games. Released by Eric Barone, Stardew Valley looks light on paper, but one can understand its complexity when one starts to play the game. It has many features found in the Harvest Moon games. However, it also has enough of its own to attract the players.
In Stardew Valley, players inherit a farm in terrible conditions, and the task for them is cut out. As they restore the farm to its former glory in the game, they will have to farm, fish, and mine, among other things. The indie game can be enjoyed alone or in a co-op where players can play with their friends. Since its initial release, the game has been released on consoles and even handheld devices, which offer the additional benefits of portability.
While there is no shortage of card games in today's digital age, only a select few can come close to Inscryption's complex and unique offering. The game takes a lot of inspiration from titles like Slay the Spire. However, it takes on a much creepier outlook. Players have to make their deck and play the cards, and there is an element of sacrifice as they play mightier cards.
Inscryption isn't just a card game, as players have to escape the rooms. The more rounds they play, the more aware they become of their surroundings. Rest assured, whatever it looks like isn't the case, which creates an eerie feeling in anyone who plays the game. As a bonus, players can opt-in for the beta version and turn the game into a roguelike that allows for a lot of replayability.
3) Disco Elysium
There is perhaps no other title like the indie gaming sensation Disco Elysium. Although detective games aren't uncommon, the way Disco Elysium offers what it has to offer is distinctly different from the rest of the games in the category. Players wake up in a state of intoxication, and they have to solve a nasty murder that has taken place. However, there are no fights and combats, and players have to solve the case based on their sheer intellect.
Some even consider Disco Elysium one of the best RPGs, and there is a justified reason for that. There are countless conversation threads with different NPCs in the game, and each discussion offers something unique. The psyche system of the indie game is unique, and it lets players determine what kind of personality their character will be like. Overall, it is a must-have experience every gamer, even if the title isn't their usual cup of tea.
Hades is arguably one of the best indie games in the world, and it has taken the gaming world by storm since its release. The developers hit the bull's eye with the game as players play in the boots of Zagreus, who is the prince of the underworld. Hades brings out the best of many good roguelike games as players continue to run after runs to improve their capabilities.
Along the journey, players will have different ways to improve Zagreus, which involves unlocking new moves and weapons. Interacting with other Olympian gods is also important as it unlocks several useful items. While escaping Hades' chamber is no mean feat, even failure feels more rewarding in this wonderful indie game.
1) Rogue Legacy 2
It has taken a long time for fans to get a successor to Rogue Legacy. As good as the first game was, it had its limitations. However, they have been removed with the second title of the series. Rogue Legacy 2 was fully launched recently, and the game easily stands out as one of the best releases of 2022. The game is a blend of Hollow Knight and Hades. In the game, players have to take on different bosses in biomes throughout their journey. Dying is a natural part of it, as every time a player fails, their character is replaced by an heir.
Players can improve their characters using the skill tree, which helps unlock different buffs. Hence, failure is a part of the success as players unlock new areas, obtain new buffs, and build up different classes. There is a solid amount of endgame content with the burden system, and players can use different modifiers to create new challenges in this brilliant indie game.