Nintendo has graced Switch owners with some indie game love. I’m not sure about all the other Nintendo Switch owners, but I love the Switch mainly for the indie games. In the past, I loved playing the PlayStation Vita for some of the exclusives and mostly for indie games. The Switch has become the successor to the Vita, and I think of it as a “Vita 2” from another company. My favorite game on the Switch last year was Steamworld Dig 2 by Image & Form Games. Indie games bring a different take to the gaming scene with unique gameplay and artwork. Sure, it’s not as massive as the Triple AAA developers of Nintendo or other third party developers. The indie games have an approach that caters to different gamers who would appreciate these games. The list of games below is what the Nindies have shown during their direct approach.
Cuphead (Studio MDHR – Available April 18)
This is possibly the biggest announcement in the whole show. No one was expecting this to come to the Nintendo Switch (well … except for the people who wished it would). The reason why most weren’t expecting it is because Cuphead is a Microsoft title that was exclusive to Xbox and PC. Luckily, Xbox is sharing this amazing and hard-punishing game with Switch owners.
Overland (FINJI – Available Fall)
Go on a trip across the U.S. with a group of travelers in this turn-based survival game. Face against scary creatures, save survivors, and look for items to survive. Be prepared to choose where to go to next by either upgrading a car or saving a dog. Be warned as there are consequences to your actions!
My Friend Pedro (Devolver Digital – Available June)
A violent ballet about friendship, imagination, and one man’s struggle to obliterate anyone in his path at the behest of a sentient banana. The strategic use of split aiming, slow motion, and the ol’ stylish window breach create one sensational action sequence after another in an explosive battle through the violent underworld.
Neo Cab (Fellow Traveller – Available Summer)
An emotional survival game with a strong narrative focus. Play as Lina, one of the last human rideshare drivers in a near-future, AI-driven world. Use the Neo Cab app to navigate the city, choose your passengers, and engage with them to learn their stories … and uncover the truth about your own.
The Red Lantern (Timberline Studio – Available Later This Year)
The Red Lantern is a rogue-lite, resource management, narrative game where you and your team of five sled dogs are lost in the wilderness and must navigate the ever-changing events of the Alaskan bush to find your way home.
Darkwood (Crunching Koalas/Acid Wizard – Available May)
The world of Darkwood is procedurally-generated as the locations and events will vary for each play-through and player. There’s no linear path in these woods so proceed with caution, and know each decision will impact you and the inhabitants of Darkwood.
Katana Zero (Devolver Digital – Available April 18)
A stylish neo-noir, action-platformer featuring breakneck action and instant-death combat. Slash, dash, and manipulate time to unravel your past in a beautifully brutal acrobatic display.
Rad (Double Fine – Available Summer)
S 3D action roguelike set in a post-post-apocalyptic world where humanity has faced armageddon not once, but twice.
Creature In The Well (Flight School – Available Summer)
A top-down, pinball inspired hack-and-slash dungeon crawler. As the last remaining BOT-C unit, venture deep into a desert mountain to restore power to an ancient facility that’s haunted by a desperate Creature. Uncover and upgrade powerful gear in order to save the city of Mirage from a deadly sandstorm.
Bloodroots (Paper Cult – Available Summer)
A relentless action game that unfolds across the sprawling “Weird West.” You’ll choreograph spectacular, ultra-violent combos by making use of everything around you (from hatchets to ladders to … carrots?) It’s improvise or die as Mr. Wolf fights his way to the center of the mystery — Why was he betrayed?
Pine (Twirlbound – Available August)
An open-world, action- adventure simulation game. Take on the role of Hue, a brave young adult who belongs to the last remaining tribe of humans on the island of Albamare. Find your way through an ever-changing world in which all creatures have lives, goals, and quests of their own. Albamare’s factions trade and fight with each other over food and territory while Hue learns ways to influence the ecology in search for a new home for the humans.
Super Crate Box (Vlambeer – Available April)
When all that really mattered was getting on that high score list … Grab your baseball cap and loosen your pants, it’s time to fight endless hordes of enemies and collect every weapon crate you can. Prepare for an arcade delight with tight controls, refreshing game mechanics, cracking retro art, and a terribly hip chiptune soundtrack.
Nuclear Throne (Vlambeer – Available Today)
A post-apocalyptic, roguelike, top-down shooter. Not “the final hope of humanity” post-apocalyptic, but rather “humanity is extinct and mutants and monsters now roam the world” post-apocalyptic. Fight your way through wastelands with powerful weaponry while also collecting radiation to mutate some new limbs and abilities. All these things and more … if only you were good at this game. Can you reach the Nuclear Throne?
Ultra Bugs (Vlambeer – Available Later This Year)
With a similar to Space Invader, it’s an art of a series of releases the developer is bringing to the Switch.
Swim Sanity (Decoy Games – Available Summer)
A multiplayer, underwater shooter with action-packed Co-Op and Versus game modes that are all supported by online and local play. You star as the hero named Mooba, who uses a variety of unique power ups and weapons to survive in this aquatic world.
Blaster Master Zero II (Inti Creative – Available Today)
The side-scrolling, top-down, hybrid action-adventure gameplay returns with a brand new sequel to Blaster Master Zero!
Stranger Things 3 (Bonus XP – Available July 4)
The official companion game for Season 3 of the hit original series. This adventure game blends a distinctively retro 16-bit art style with modern gameplay mechanics to deliver nostalgic fun with a fresh new twist. Fans will be able to experience their favorite show through a mix of exploration, puzzles, and combat.
Cadence of Hyrule (Brace Yourself Games/Spike Chunsoft – Available Spring)
Explore the randomly generated overworld and dungeons on a quest to save Hyrule. Every beat of each remixed The Legend of Zelda tune is a chance to move, attack, defend, and more so stay one step ahead of each enemy and boss … or face the music.