All of the week's indie gaming news worth caring about.
In this week’s edition of our Hidden Indie Gems feature, we’re going to cast a spotlight on some of the week’s standout indie titles, and let you know about a few new releases you can spend time with this weekend.
From slice-of-life stories, to sci-fi adventures and genre-blending experiments - there’s plenty to chew on this week. Read on below for our curated list.
Hot indie games week of February 17
Deliver Us the Moon
The excellent story-based adventure Deliver Us the Moon launched last year on PC to critical acclaim. Consoles didn’t get it then, but they’re getting it soon.
Developer Keoken announced this week that the game is coming to PS4 and Xbox One on April 24, with Nintendo Switch to follow in the summer.
Deliver Us the Moon is a fairly short narrative about being humanity’s last astronaut, sent to space to figure out why Earth’s only source of energy has been shutdown. It’s a story about human connection, space exploration and relishing what little we have in the face of inevitable doom.
If you own the PC version and a ray tracing-capable GPU, you should revisit the game if you haven’t done so recently. Ray-traced reflections make exploring derelict space stations all the more atmospheric, enough to start another playthrough.
Hardspace: Shipbreaker is the Blackbird Interactive collaboration Focus Home teased last year. Shipbreaker is essentially a physics-based ship salvaging game where you’re sent in with your laser cutter to tear pieces off these massive vessels.
If the name sounds familiar, it’s because Blackbird actually used a similar name before. Hardware: Shipbreakers is what the studio used to call its then-in-development Homeworld spiritual successor, before the developer was allowed to use the Homeworld brand name.
That project later turned into Homeworld: Deserts of Kharak, but you can definitely see some shared designs between it and the new Shipbreaker. Shipbreaker’s debut gameplay trailer suggests that we’ll need to tactically dismantle target ships, as taking out the wrong component may lead to catastrophic results.
Shipbreaker is coming to Steam Early Access this summer with the first act of the story, two classes of spaceships and upgradeable salvaging tools. The studio will also be at PAX East next week, if you’re in town.
Half Past Fate
Half Past Fate is the new game from The King’s Bird developer Serenity Forge, whose charming art shines through yet again in this isometric adventure.
Half Past Fate charts the story of six different people, whose lives intertwine over the course of eight years. The slice-of-life adventure is mostly dialogue driven, though you will be solving the occasional puzzle through pointing and clicking.
It looks like something to relax and unwind to as you unravel its human stories, in no small part because of the game’s presentation. Half Past Fate hits Steam and Nintendo Switch March 12.
Games you can play this weekend
Hellpoint, the Souls-meets-Dead-Space action RPG, is only a couple of months away from release. To sell you on the concept, developer Cradle Games utilised the same tactic it used to convince players to back it on Kickstarter three years ago: releasing a playable demo.
This free demo is essentially the same area first shown in 2017, as the developer wanted to highlight the difference three years of work have made. Called Hellpoint: The Thespian Feast, the story of this particular chapter actually takes place 50 years after the events covered in the main game. This very same area can also be experienced in the full game, though likely in a different context.
The Thespian Feast is a fully-featured zone with its own enemies and boss fight, so should make for a good showcase of Hellpoint’s mechanics. You can also bring a friend along thanks to split-screen support. The Thespian Feast is available now on Steam as a very reasonable 1.7GB download.
Hellpoint is out April 16 on PC, PS4, Xbox One and Switch.
Kingdom Under Fire 2
Kingdom Under Fire 2 recently launched in the West on PC, over ten years after it was first announced. Years of development hell, changing platforms and priorities finally culminated in a Steam release last November.
Kingdom Under Fire 2 is an MMO with an ambitious mix of RPG and RTS gameplay that creates a unique experience where you go from tactically commanding big AI armies to being on the frontline doing the fighting yourself in third-person.
The Grave of Time update hit earlier this week, and to celebrate, developer Blueside is making the game free to play until Monday, February 24. The free weekend gives you access to all five heroes in PvE and PvP battles.
If you end up enjoying your time with it, you can also get it on sale for %50 off until February 26. Just head over to Steam to take advantage of all this.
Corruption 2029 seemingly came out of nowhere. Developer The Bearded Ladies decided to buck industry trends of announcing games too early by instead revealing the game just a few days before its launch.
Similar to Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden, Corruption 2029 is a turn-based tactics game set in a grim future where you command three heroes. Unfortunately, however, there are no wisecracking ducks this time around.
Generally speaking, missions in Corruption 2029 play out similarly to Mutant Year Zero. You start off in stealth, and get to freely explore the world and decide when to engage the enemy. Once you’re spotted, both sides take turns to move their units.
As in Road to Eden, you’ll be relying on cover and the unique abilities of your three heroes in the campaign.
Corruption 2029 is available only on PC on the Epic Store for the reasonable price of $20.
Yes, we’re going to recommend Crytek’s singular shooter once again. The game just hit PS4, and it’s already available on PC and Xbox One. Jim Rossignol shared plenty of reasons why you should play it in our five-star review.
But let’s recap it one more time. Hunt Showdown is one of those rare gems that takes inspiration from a hodgepodge of games and genres and somehow turns that into something unlike any of them.
It’s a punishing shooter whose pace makes PUBG look like Quake. A PvE, monster-hunting survival horror that will terrify you more than Resident Evil ever could. It’s a multiplayer game where you’ll constantly be second-guessing your decisions, enough that you could avoid other players entirely.
But above all, it’s an experience you won’t find anywhere else, not at the level. It’s getting a PvE-only mode this year, too, so you should definitely check it out. You can get it for 40% off on Steam until March 2.