Here we are, on the fourth section of the End of Year Round-Up, and we’re looking towards the brightest parts of the future.
With every years, names are made, and those names are focused on until their next project, all the while you’ll be standing there and waiting in excitement. I did this last year and was pleasantly surprised by what came out in 2017, with a lot of what we showcased in The Snob Awards being prime examples. Let’s not piss around the bush and get started right away!
Glitched – Blow on The Cartridge (PC/PS Vita/PS4/XB1)
First on the agenda, Glitched, which is what you’d get if you spilled orange juice all over an Earthbound cartridge. I didn’t know much about the game, besides an itch.io page, so I let our editor Max explain why it should be met with excitement:-
“Glitched is what you’d get if you spilled— oh. Looks like Sam already made that joke. Anyway, Glitched (kickstarter page here) markets itself as an “RPG where the hero realizes that you, the player, exist”. That might be a fun little quirk that hopefully doesn’t go overboard, but what got me interested was the Essence System, which tracks the player’s actions throughout the game and lead to unique play through every time. Instead of a good or evil morality system, there are instead six traits that you can increase that will affect your interactions with the world.”
Glitched is set for release on PC in early 2018, and will later release for the PS4, Vita and Xbox One.
Agony – Life Is Hell (PC/PS4/XB1)
Admittedly, I didn’t want to put this here, instead opting for Afterparty, a similar title where you outdrink Satan, made by Night School Studio, creators of OXENFREE. I won’t bother you about this game again (BUT I WILL SHILL MY WORK), or Afterparty until the 2019 Indie Lookout.
Not to discredit or insult Agony on its own merits, however, as whatever the devs have been cooking up has been pleasing watcher of this title for a while. Agony takes place in hell, and opts to be more of a “take it to the source” approach to the survival horror than usual. From many, many many screenshots and gameplay clips, it’s clear that Agony is set on making you feel ill, with tons of gore and blood to tide over the average Saw fan.
It’s also being developed by Madmind Studio, a team of 9 who all have quite the respectable resumes. From The Witcher 3, to Enemy Front, to The Division, it seems to be a team of veterans who know what they’re doing, and their history might explain why they got Kickstarted so easily.
With that, the media jumped all over it, acting as if Agony was the first game ever to take place in Hell, instantly forgetting about DOOM, Dante’s Inferno, Shadows of The Damned and all of the Diablo titles. That doesn’t detract the fact that Agony is still shaping up to be a horrifically brilliant title, and hopefully Madmind can come out of the launch like a bat out of hell.
Agony is set for release in Spring of 2018.
Bloodstained: Ritual of The Night – Asstlevania (PC/PS4/PS Vita/Switch/XB1)
Another Kickstarter success story, but with more of a prestige behind it.
Koji Igarashi is the driving force behind many of the greatest Castlevania games you ever played, from Aria of Sorrow, to Symphony of The Night, with the latter regarded as one of the greatest games of all time. He was also one of the many who left Konami when they realized they didn’t have the faintest idea behind what they were doing, in terms of video games. With this, he sought a vision, a vision that no other publisher would go through with, until he went to Kickstarter with Bloodstained, raising 5 and a half million dollars for his idea.
Publishers all over the world must’ve been kicking themselves, for Igarashi knew what the people wanted, and that was a Metroidvania with the same style and grace that his previous child Symphony of The Night could give. Bloodstained looks to be that way, but this is one hype project that must still be taken with a grain of salt. Mighty No. 9 and Yooka-Laylee set an uncertain face for the future of Kickstarted games, and Bloodstained can’t be exempt from the rule.
Hopefully, Bloodstained can prove its Kickstarter predecessor’s wrong, and all will be well by its release date, which is approximately set for March 2018 for all major platforms, and the PS Vita.
Mulaka – Myths and Dreams (PC/Switch/PS4/XB1)
Mulaka feels more like a pet project, than anything else on this list, and with good reason.
The developers, one Lienzo hail from Mexico, and for Mulaka, they’ve been researching the history of their home country, and specifically focusing on the culture of the Taramuhara. Lienzo have provided a lot of videos to showcase their history, and they’re engaging throughout, with Mulaka focusing on the myths and legends that surround the Taramuhara.
The game is a polar opposite to their previous major release, Hunter’s Legacy, a Metroidvania that could’ve definitely done with a bit of polish, with Mulaka being this large 3D action-adventure romp through barren lands. There’s a lot of gameplay videos already out, and it definitely fits the vibe and life that the real life counterpart shows.
Mulaka is set for an early 2018 release.
The Fall Part 2: Unbound – Tumbling Down (PC/PS4/Switch/XB1)
The LIMBO clone takes the piss sometimes, doesn’t it?
Black The Fall, Monochroma, Feist, a lot of these focus on style rather than substance, and it’s the main reason why most of these failed. The Fall didn’t have that problem, instead deciding to focus on the gameplay mechanics, all the while retaining the flair and atmosphere of its inspirations, which is probably why it won various awards. From what has already been seen, The Fall Part 2 has improved on almost every aspect.
Originally, The Fall Part 2 was scheduled for a November 2017 release, but when they realized the release schedule would mean facing up against Call of Duty, Mario and Assassin’s Creed, they backed up. It was a brave decision, one that you could respect no matter what, and it’s given them time to tweak it to what they believe is perfection.
If you’re up for an uncomfortable romp through forgotten and decrepit lands, be sure to look out for The Fall Part 2, which releases in Feburary of 2018.
The Last Night – Cyberpunk 1987 (PC/XB1)
A title that needs no introduction, I believe.
Originally being introduced at E3 2017, a lot of people paid attention when they saw the sleek style it was going to provide. I, however, did not actually see gameplay of it, but I know someone who did. Our own Devin Pratt, who has provided information on why you should be excited for it:-
“With all the excitement of upcoming releases in 2018, the one Indie game I look forward to is The Last Night. If you are unfamiliar with the game, or failed to see the spectacular trailer shown at E3 2017, it is a 2D cinematic platformer set in a post-cyberpunk world. The world is made with flat pixel art and shows off Neon-littered environments that look phenomenal. I look forward to this games’ artistic value and can’t wait to see what Odd Tales and Raw Fury put on the table.”
The Last Night looks set to stun, with what seems like its callbacks to the days of Another World and Flashback, and will release in mid-2018 for the PC and Xbox One.
There’s probably hundreds of others that I’ve missed, but these were the ones that were in our radar, and now we’re fully ready for anything coming at us. However, there’s something else we need to focus on. We’ve looked on the good, the lookin’ good, and the ugly. You know what’s missing, right?
Owner of the largest collection of indie games in the Western Hemisphere, and TimeSplitters’ biggest fanboy.