Every new Indie Spotlight generates one extra competitor, fighting to be the very best.

I have certainly covered some great games, … but which game is the best in each genre? Here’s my picks:

 

3D PLATFORMER
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A HAT IN TIME

A charming 3D platformer full of variety and influences from all the classics. It suffers a little from lengthy load times, but don’t let that put you off this classic.

2D PLATFORMER
Olija on Steam

OLIJA

A short but sweet platformer that takes its harpoon gimmick and uses it well. The game never misses a beat nor overstays its welcome.

METROIDVANIA
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BLASPHEMOUS

People may focus on its difficulty as the main selling point, but really Blasphemous is an absolutely beautiful Metroidvania that is way fairer than you expect it to be. The fact it’s missing a bestiary though is a crime.

FPS
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NEON WHITE

Certainly a less traditional FPS as it includes an element of strategy with how you use your cards, but it’s still a very fast-paced shooter that’s naturally designed for going fast. Think of it like Vaporwave Quake.

ACTION SHOOTER
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HOTLINE MIAMI COLLECTION

These games may be older now, but they still retain their charm. Both games are brutal fever dreams where you indulge in a bit of the ol’ ultra violence. They’re classics for a reason.

SHMUP
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P.3

Whilst I’m not a huge fan of the genre, I have quite a soft spot for P.3. Only controlling the ship left and right, with your ship only firing when using an input, it takes what you know of the genre and flips it on its head. A very addictive game!

FLIGHT
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ASTRODOGS

Whilst we have no real Star Fox game, Dynamic Media Triad provides us with the next best thing. A decent sized campaign with lots of unlockables to keep you playing. This is definitely one of my favourite indie games.

RPG
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OUTER WORLDS

Whilst it’s true that the Switch version had to make some sacrifices to get it running, it’s still an excellent RPG that takes the Fallout formula and separates the game into bite-sized planets instead.

ADVENTURE
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RAJI: AN ANCIENT EPIC

Whilst the combat isn’t the best, Raji offers a really compelling adventure with an ancient Indian backdrop. Lots of really interesting lore here that will keep you engaged as you traverse the land to save your brother.

PUZZLE
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BABA IS YOU

Baba is You is such a clever puzzle game with a simple premise, but it’s one that can be cracked open in a multitude of ways. It starts simple but gets ridiculously hard. You even have a built in creator to make your own puzzles!

STRATEGY
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ROCK OF AGES 2

Tower defense meets Monkey Ball, and infused with Monty Python. It shouldn’t work but it absolutely does. Whether you’re controlling an unwieldly boulder or planting your riduculous defenses, it’s an absolute blast.

ROGUELIKE
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DICEY DUNGEONS

It didn’t win the 2021 GOTY for no reason. It’s cheap, it’s fantastic, it’s Dicey Dungeons. Don’t be put off by the dice rolling and the deckbuilding. That put me off too, but now it’s one of my favourite games of all time.

RACING
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SLIPSTREAM

With it’s great artstyle that looks like a cross between Ion Fury and Outrun, Slipstream is a fantastic racer that pays homage to SEGA’s arcade classic whilst offering a ton of great content at a cheap price. Outrun fans owe it to themselves to pick this one up.

BEAT ‘EM UP
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SUPER PUNCH PATROL

There have been quite a few indie beat ’em ups, but very few quite live up to the brilliance of the Streets of Rage series. Super Punch Patrol may look like a very low budget take on the series, but it nail the gameplay to a T.

NARRATIVE
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PARADISE KILLER

A very non traditional detective game. Paradise Killer puts you in the shoes of Lady Love Dies as she explores the massive island looking for clues and chatting with the strange residents. With a choose your own murderer storyline (albeit with a true correct answer), the game will hook you with its weird brilliance.

HORROR
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TORMENTED SOULS

An excellent revival of the survival horror genre. It takes an archaic formula and modernises it for the Switch era. It’s atmospheric, it has great puzzles, and is an overall superb indie horror experience. It’s a must play for fans of the genre.

STEALTH
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UNMETAL

What seems to be a MGS on the surface is in fact an excellent parody game that riffs off many action games and films. It’s not all comedy though, as the gameplay is top notch too.

MUSIC
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THUMPER

I have never played anything quite like Thumper. Like an eldritch rollercoaster, you need to traverse the track to the unsettling beat and take down the monstrosities there. Great fun.

POINT AND CLICK
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LOST IN PLAY

A fusion of point and click with puzzles that works perfectly, and the beautiful and charming presentation mixed with the cute story of siblings lost in their imagination make this a game you won’t want to miss!

MONSTER TAMER
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COROMON

Despite not doing a huge amount to differentiate itself from DS era Pokémon games, Coromon does offer a compelling story, great creature designs, thought-out mechanics, and adjustable difficulty. Any Monster Tamer fans should grab this without hesitation!

SIMULATOR
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SPACEBASE STARTOPIA

A really fun twist on the simulation genre sees you building your own space donut. The RTS mechanics can be a bit of a pain later in the story due to framerate issues, but most of the time the game is an absolute delight.