Pictured above: Overfall
The last few weeks have seen a larger than normal release of fairly solid indie games on Steam, many of which have sadly gone unnoticed by gamers. It's with this in mind that I wanted to play catch up and highlight just over a dozen games I didn't have time for from the previous few weeks. Expect the second round later this week.
EPΘCH is a nostalgia-fueled, top-down action RPG reminiscent of the Zelda series, with a pinch of Souls-inspired challenging-but-fair combat. Create and customize your own dungeon diver and discover decrepit catacombs and ancient cities from a bygone age. The game's narrative is told through the forgotten ruins you'll uncover in your adventure, with enough secrets to warrant multiple playthroughs. If you find the dungeons of EPΘCH to be too challenging, then grab a friend and try out the game's online co-op.
htoL#NiQ: The Firefly Diary
Nippon Ichi Software, Inc.
The oddly titled htoL#NiQ (pronounced Hotaru no Nikki) has finally made its way to a platform that people actually own. This fiendishly difficult puzzle game puts you in control of two fairies, Lumen and Umbra, as they guide a lost girl named Mion. Much like in Lemmings, you don't directly control Mion, and instead must use Lumen to direct her movements and Umbra to overcome the traps and enemies in her way. Be aware that this was originally a Vita game, with all the downsides that entails. Expect a 30FPS cap and limited resolution options.
Resilient Games Ltd.
On the subject of puzzles, MechoEcho is a unique physics-based puzzle game where you build and drive robots in a bizarre cyberpunk world. You'll be presented with various environmental challenges, and then have a chance to use the block-based construction system to create machines to overcome them. The system looks very simple to understand, yet deep enough to build some ridiculously complex contraptions. Some levels will put component limits on your constructions, while others might have enemies to get past as well, but none of the puzzles have a set solution that you must adhere to. In addition to the campaign there is also a sandbox mode, where the only limit is your own creativity. You can also find MechoEcho on GOG.
Sengoku Jidai: Shadow of the Shogun
Sengoku Jidai is the latest turn-based wargame to be pumped out by Slitherine Ltd., one of the most prolific publishers of this niche genre. Sengoku Jidai uses an improved version of the engine Byzantine Games used for their previous title Pike and Shot, but brings the action to Sengoku era Japan. As with most games in the genre, you'll have a chance to rewrite history on your campaign to unify a fractured Japan and potentially expand to China and Korea. Other modes include multiplayer and a deep skirmish system that can be used to play out "what-if" scenarios or randomly generated battles. Sengoku Jidai is mod friendly and has a built-in map editor for additional replayability.
The Mims Beginning
The Mims Beginning is a god game along the lines of what Peter Molyneux used to make before he went totally off the rails. You play as a god-like entity that must help the Mims survive after crash landing on a floating island. The Mims will need to establish colonies to survive this hostile world, with the eventual goal of repairing their ship so they can leave. You can use a host of physic powers that can alter the flora, fauna, and environment to make life more hospitable for your little minions. Likewise, you'll need to contend with dangers like predators, invasions, and cosmic disasters that threaten your Mims' survival.
Finally we come to Overfall, a turn-based strategy RPG of epic adventure on the high seas. Lead two heroes on a quest to find their lost king across a procedurally generated campaign, where hero deaths are permanent and important story decisions have multiple choices and consequences. Along the way you'll encounter various races and factions you can befriend or betray, with 36 possible companions to recruit and 9 playable heroes to unlock. You can also find Overfall on GOG.
That's all for this bonus article. Come back this Friday for part two.
Frank currently writes for Indie Game Source and Bell of Lost Souls. You can follow him on Twitter @Frank_Gaming for updates on future articles and general Twitter ramblings.