A Zelda-like exploration game, Sable at its core is an exploration game with the player riding on a bike through vast expanses, climbing structures, and gliding on a red ball high in the air. Players play as a girl who is leaving her nomadic tribe to go out on a rite of passage called The Gliding.
The whole game feels like one last act of freedom in an attempt to discover oneself. The world of Sable is filled with beautiful structures, like The Whale and The Wyrm, for the player to explore and admire. Rather than combat, Shedworks focuses on the exploration and puzzle aspect of the game.
As Sable leaves the clan in the beginning, she is given the below advice:
"Try to have fun. There's a lot to be said about ritual and independence and all of that out there, but the world's an easier place if you put joy first".
The bright color palette of Sable brings forth a feeling of warmth in a year that has been anything but. Players can chase after cartographers, explore ancient ships, and drive into the vast wilderness of Sable in an attempt to find themselves.
With 2021 showcasing some outstanding indie game releases, here are five others similar to Sable that are sure to catch the player's attention.
Alternative indie titles similar to Sable in 2021
5) No Longer Home
No Longer Home is a game about goodbyes. Like Sable, it deals with the act of growing up and learning to cope with difficulties. The player follows the story of Bo and Ao in their final year of education with Bo moving back in with their family.
The game has a really soothing art-style to fall in love with. Players get to explore their apartment. Played from an isometric perspective, players can rotate each room to reveal newer places to check.
Conversations are immersive and feel well-thought out. Players can relate to the pain of separation, and the fear of the unknown that comes with the closing of one chapter of life.
4) Before Your Eyes
Like Sable, this indie game is a memorable journey all throughout. What really shines through and engages players is its unique mechanics of blinking. Through a webcam, Before your Eyes tracks when the players blink in real life which gives them the power to progress through a beautiful narrative.
Playing as a soul that has passed on, players meet a feline ferryman who makes the protagonist relive the events of his entire life so that they have a tale to tell the Gatekeeper. What follows is a simple tale that is sure to tug at the heartstrings of any player. Although it can be played with the traditional input of mouse, playing it through blinking makes it that much more special.
3) Genesis Noir
Much in tune with Sable, Genesis Noir is a psychedelic visual treat in its own right. The player is a 1940s detective working to save his love from a bitter love triangle.
The characters are more of a metaphysical concept that adds to a narrative that is largely scientific and showcases the universe. The often monochromatic sketch of the game is beautifully brought to life by the game with captivating sounds and delightful visuals.
Wildermyth is an indie RPG that is ambitious enough to entice players to give it a try. The game follows heroes "from their pitchfork days to their prime." The procedural generation of storytelling meets the unique narratives of the players' choices that alter and reshape the world.
Wildermyth's light brevity catches a similar tone to Sable's and makes it one of the best indie games of 2021.
1) Death's Door
In this game, the player is a Crow. Their duty is to reap the souls of the dead as an honest day's work. The game takes place when one of the assigned souls is stolen and the player has to track the thief down.
Each level is a picturesque delight with its wondrous visual appeal. The combat is fast-paced and the exploration and puzzle aspects of the game are pleasurably engaging. Death's Door carefully weaves through its tale of melancholy and charming narrative as it becomes a must-have for any player who enjoys such games.