10 incredible unknown games to put on your wish list this minute

Heart Of Muriet's beautiful twilight skies.

Screenshot: Microstory

Just like the rest of Team my city are turkey hunting through their local Macy’s (I did more research on what a Thanksgiving is this year), again I got the keys to the site, locked everyone out and immediately lost those keys. While I’m stuck here I have to tell you about some great looking indie games coming soon.

Look, it could be worse. I was trying to work out some kind of feedline for the phrase “May Seize Day Per Raid.” [Ghost of Ari sweeps through Kotaku HQ’s dusty halls] A better use of all our time would be for me to fill you in on a slew of ace indie games that you otherwise risk not hearing about. Let’s wishlist them, increase their YouTube views, and then tell all the other kids about it during intermission.

As always, I do not personally vouch for these games. These have been randomly selected from a huge stack of emails I’ve received a clarion call, and unless I say so, I have not played them. It’s all about seizing the opportunity to use this massive platform to highlight the kinds of games that the gaming media usually ignore. So let’s get started!

Microstory

Heart of Murite

Look, this is what it’s about. House Murite is a voxel-based RTS, which completely eschews micromanagement in favor of strategic play. It’s about wizards, building settlements, researching magical abilities and making things explode. Also, OMG, watch that trailer. Normally I worry when I read “voxel”, but not this time. It looks like someone made a stop-motion movie in it Minecraftand the result is absolutely mesmerizing.

Developer: Microstory

Release: August 2023

Demo and wishlist here

espiocracy

espiocracy

A Cold War spy sim that lets you choose a country’s intelligence agency and then play as them on a world map from 1946 to 2020. The video above is an absolutely incredible example of how to present a game that is otherwise primarily a map image, making it look exciting. With 74 playable countries, and the claim that it will allow you to rewrite history Paradox-style, this is hugely ambitious.

Developer: Ex Vivo Studios

Release: To be determined

Wishlist here

Mythical Owl

Harmony’s Odyssey

Released last month, I’m most annoyed with myself that I still haven’t made time for it Harmony’s Odyssey. On the basis of color alone, it qualifies for everyone’s attention. It’s a beautiful looking action-adventure, packed with puzzles where you rearrange reality into a series of dioramas. I’m so glad MythicOwl emailed me because it’s the reminder I needed to finally get going and play this.

Developer: Mythical Owl

Release: Out now

Buy here

Jupiter moons

Jupiter Moons: Mecha

No, you can’t move for “roguelike deckbuilders” now, so it’s something that Jupiter moons caught my attention, and for a second time! We’ll be a mecha pilot and fend off pirates and bandits from Jupiter’s lunar colonies, but since it’s now, we’ll use maps to do it. This is a case where the trailer really sells it in a crowded market, that combination of complicated build-outs for your mecha and then the fast pace of action, despite this being done by throwing cards across the screen. I also really like the look of the art. And he was already on the wish list.

Developer: RockAndBushes

Release: 2023

Wishlist here

Aunty Games

Gourdlets

You immediately see why Healthy Games got excited recently about Gourdlets. It’s a city-building sandbox, except it really means business. So many city building games that say “sandbox” just mean “you can place the buildings where you want, while ticking off this list of objectives.” Not this: there are apparently no goals, no targets, just the fun of building a cute little town, then watching the gourdlet vege people move in and interact with what you’ve created. Which sounds so sweet.

Developer: Aunty Games

Release: 2023

Demo and wishlist here

Luis G Bento

BODY DEALER

I’ll be honest: when I read Luis G. Bento’s blurb for the apparently screamed BODY DEALER (which I think is Latin for Body Eater…), claiming he made an immersive sim along the lines of Deus Ex and Fallout, my aloud response was, “No, you’re not.” Because a person can’t. And then I watched the trailer, and… blimey. He might be. Now, that footage above is described as “pre-pre-alpha”, and it’s not just you, it has no sound, but come on! It looks impressive, right? You’ll also notice that there are no weapons in this “retro-futuristic” (not an) RPG, where instead you just fight with objects you throw around. Like in real life.

Developer: Luis G Bento

Release: September 2023

Wishlist here

STARS IN THE TRASH – announce trailer

Stars in the trash

If you’re of a certain age (it’s called: Old), you remember the heyday of 2D Disney platformers. There was Aladdin, The lionking, and uh that’s it. But they both were adored, a combination of a half-decent platformer with Disney’s animation style. That’s what developer Valhalla Cats wants to do Stars in the trash. You can see in the footage that it looks beautiful, if it’s more 80’s Euro animation than Disney. I really don’t like that title, but the game itself looks like it could be beautiful.

Developer: Valhalla cats

Release: 4th quarter 2023

Demo and wishlist here

Duppy Detective Tashia – Announcement Trailer

Duppy Detective Tashia

Developer Spritewrench has two projects running, the first of which has the brilliant name for next year About the danger of parrots. It appears to be an intriguing puzzle game, with the trailer’s familiar-looking puzzle type then rather surprising me with the “Destroy All Humans” menu option. But grabbing me further is 2024’s Duppy Detective Tashia, a detective game set in the Caribbean in which you help the titular Tashia find her stolen phone and, well, shadow. It is based on the folklore of the region, where “duppy” is a form of ghost, sometimes a malevolent spirit, and the basis for many an excellent story.

Developer: Sprite wrench

Release: 2024

Wishlist here

GROSS trailer

DISGUSTING

Another loud game name, although this time a word it requires. This is a tower defense (remember them?) with FPS elements! Thank God, there was a time in the last decade when I wrote “a tower defense with XXX elements” so much, but it was never “FPS”. The trailer is bloody brilliant and makes the whole thing look spectacularly insane, even though what I’m most confused about is how the genres overlap. We’ll know in a few months!

Developer: Hangry Owl Games

Release: January 11, 2023

Demo and wishlist here

Chicken Journey – Trailer

Kip Trip

You could say I randomly chose this game because it’s called that Kip Trip, and on most other days you would be right. But after looking at the visuals, I discovered a pixel platformer that reminded me of when I was a boy, and sprites were clinging to vines properly. The whole thing looks cute, with lots of puzzle solving and friendly chatting, and it really looks like something I wish I was playing right now.

Developer: Payroll software

Release: March 2023

Demo and wishlist here

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