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The Greatest Indie Video games on the PlayStation 4 (December 2019)

The Best Indie Games on the PlayStation 4 (December 2019)

The PlayStation Four is dwelling to a number of the greatest blockbuster exclusives round. This yr, we noticed Hideo Kojiima’s return to gaming with the enigmatic Demise Stranding, his first challenge since leaving Konami. Whereas big-budget video games like these provide staggering manufacturing worth and immense polish, typically you crave one thing completely different. That’s the place impartial video video games are available in. Fortunately, there’s no scarcity of fantastic indies to sink your enamel into. If you happen to’re uncertain the place to start out, check out this listing of one of the best indie video games for the PS4.

Motion

Useless Cells

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Useless Cells combines the trimmings of Metroidvanias with a rogue-like development system. Enjoying because the Prisoner, a humanoid composed of lifeless cells (get it?), you make your means by way of a sequence of more and more difficult dungeons. Though you should purchase everlasting upgrades on the finish of every part, once you die, you begin again firstly. A lot of Useless Cells, like most rogue-likes, revolves round trial and error.

Since Useless Cells has such satisfying fight and an in depth, attention-grabbing world to discover, beginning again firstly upon every loss of life hardly ever looks like a chore. If you happen to’re a fan of Metroidvanias who isn’t afraid of an uphill battle, Useless Cells is without doubt one of the greatest indie video games on PS4 in each genres.

Learn out full overview of Useless Cells

A Plague Story: Innocence

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Set in 14th century France, A Plague Story: Innocence will get its energy from its well-designed ambiance. You play as Amicia, a younger lady who guides her youthful brother Hugo throughout rural France to search for a remedy for his mysterious illnesses. A Plague Story is ostensibly a stealth sport, with most of your motion revolving round sneaking previous Inquisition troopers who’re trying to find the siblings. The puzzles are largely designed round plague-ridden rats, 1000’s of them. They may eat Amicia and Hugo alive if you happen to don’t keep within the gentle.

A Plague Story‘s uncertainty and the historic backdrop make for a compelling journey. The connection between Amicia and Hugo is what shines the brightest, although.

Enter the Gungeon

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Enter the Gungeon has the quick play of a bullet hell shooter sandwiched inside a rogue-like development system. Created by Dodge Roll and printed by Devolver Digital, Enter the Gungeon is without doubt one of the greatest within the crowded style. As a substitute of revamping every little thing once you die, although, the entire rooms stay intact, however the objects, enemies, and coordinates of every room modifications by way of random technology.

Its top-down, pixelated aesthetic makes it really feel as if you happen to’re enjoying a retro sport. However its mechanics, lore, and delicate depth make it really feel decidedly fashionable the additional and additional you dive into its dungeons.

Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice

Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice swamp

Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice has the lavish look of an enormous price range sport, however Ninja Concept’s darkish and stirring sport about one lady’s descent into insanity is, in actual fact, an indie sport. Senua wades into the underbelly of a hellish panorama impressed by Norse mythology to retrieve the soul of her lifeless accomplice. The sport makes use of an efficient and disturbing whisper system to repeatedly mess with Senua’s head.

Melina Juergens’ portrayal of Senua is excellent all through, as she precisely demonstrates what it’s prefer to lose management of 1’s colleges. The understated however nice swordplay retains Hellblade within the motion sport style, however in the end it succeeds for its novel method to storytelling.

Learn our full Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice overview

Hyper Gentle Drifter

Hyper Gentle Drifter is a beautiful top-down motion sport with a really distinct graphical type and even higher fight. You discover a world in shambles, armed with a sword and a gun to slay enemy after enemy.

Make no mistake, Hyper Gentle Drifter is without doubt one of the most difficult video games on this listing. It takes trial and error and quick fingers to make it by way of the dreary world full of vicious enemies. The shifting, somber soundtrack and splendidly detailed environments will hold you enjoying as you study new tips and make progress.

Hotline Miami 2: Unsuitable Quantity

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Hotline Miami 2: Unsuitable Quantity, the sequel to the standout top-down shooter, ups the ante. Serving as each a sequel and a prequel, Hotline Miami 2 retains the pixelated visuals and fast-paced motion of the unique however expands on it in new and thrilling methods. As a substitute of enjoying as simply two characters, you’ll be able to expertise the story from 13 distinctive views.

All playable characters have completely different talents, and every character provides to the story of a world lowered to anarchy. Whereas already tough out of the gate, you may as well play laborious mode. And once you’re completed, you should use an intuitive stage editor to create your environments and tales to play.

Alienation

Alienation follows Housemarque’s pattern of inauspicious however rewarding video games. As a substitute of being a twin stick shooter, nonetheless, Alienation is a Diablo-esque science fiction journey with a hearty emphasis on loot. Whether or not you play solo or cooperatively, Alienation is a grind. Although it by no means feels unfair, you must play this motion sport with precision and forethought.

Wonderful capturing mechanics, a satisfying role-playing loop, and a splendidly realized science fiction setting make Alienation a sure-fire delight for anybody trying to play an expertise just like Diablo. It’s additionally a PS4 unique.

Mark of the Ninja: Remastered

If you happen to let Mark of the Ninja sneak previous you in 2012, you will be forgiven by enjoying the remastered model on PS4. Starring a anonymous ninja, this action-stealth sport made us rethink what was potential in 2D. Slightly than with the ability to see all enemies on display, if the ninja’s eyesight is blocked, you’ll be able to’t see them lurking both. Mark of the Ninja emphasizes each sight and sound throughout its cleverly designed environments.

The remastered model provides a recent coat of paint to the fashionable expertise. If you happen to’re a fan of motion, stealth, and even platformers, Mark of the Ninja: Remastered ought to enthrall you.

Platformer

Gris

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One of the crucial attractive platforming video games we’ve ever seen — on PlayStation Four or in any other case — Gris isn’t a typical puzzle-platformer in that its problem is a comparatively minor element. You’ll discover a colourful world complemented by atmospheric music, and the story is advised with virtually no textual content so you’ll be able to expertise the sport no matter studying stage or language barrier.

For these in your life who don’t usually play video games as a result of they’re apprehensive about with the ability to really get by way of them, Gris is a good possibility, and its arrival on PlayStation Four simply implies that much more gamers can expertise it.

Spelunky

Spelunky 4

Derek Yu’s Spelunky began as an open supply sport in 2008 earlier than gaining traction and finally launching on Xbox Stay Arcade and PC in 2012. Out there on PS4 since 2014, Spelunky is without doubt one of the early examples of the rogue-like platforming phenomenon. You play as a anonymous explorer referred to as a spelunker. The aim is easy: Make your means by way of 16 ranges throughout 4 various worlds. You’ve restricted well being and just one life, although. When you die, you lose all progress, together with gold and objects.

What makes Spelunky so nice is its random technology and environmental interactions. Every time you play, the extent format modifications, and it’s not unusual to die from a totally completely different chain of occasions than you’ve ever died from earlier than. Spelunky has nice controls, a bevy of secrets and techniques, and a very good soundtrack in addition. If you happen to’re not afraid of the problem, Spelunky is a gripping and satisfying platformer that rewards those that stick round to uncover its nuances and secrets and techniques.

Celeste

Celeste does two issues extremely nicely. First, it’s a superb precision platformer within the vein of Tremendous Meat Boy. Second, and extra importantly, it’s one of many uncommon video games that inform an genuine story of psychological sickness. You play as Madeline, a down on her luck younger lady who decides to scale Celeste Mountain, a legendary problem that’s stated to assist present individuals who attain the highest their true id. Alongside the way in which, Madeline grapples together with her self-doubt, anxiousness, and despair.

The dialogue is poignant, the characters you meet are memorable, and the platforming, which includes exact jumps and sequences, is expertly designed. The retro-pixelated aesthetic feels proper at dwelling right here. Fortunately, you’ll be able to nonetheless attain the tip of Celeste‘s good story even if you happen to aren’t up for the powerful as nails platforming sections. A superb help mode permits you to modify the gameplay all the way in which as much as the diploma of being invincible.

Learn our full Celeste overview

A Hat in Time

A Hat in Time is a throwback 3D platformer within the vein of Tremendous Mario 64, Banjo Kazooie, and Spyro. You play as a younger alien lady dubbed Hat Child. All she needs to do is get on her spaceship and head dwelling. In fact, it’s not really easy. To realize her aim, she should make her means by way of 4 broad open ranges containing puzzles, enemies, and objects that may be exchanged for brand new hats. Since she’s Hat Lady, every hat comes with new talents.

A Hat in Time‘s most up-to-date replace launched native and on-line co-op for 2 gamers. For anybody in search of an old-school 3D platformer, A Hat in Time fares higher than most different makes an attempt. It’s charming, cute, and oodles of enjoyable to play.

Owlboy

Owlboy

From D-Pad Studio, Owlboy is without doubt one of the most charming and interesting 2D platformers round. You play as a human-owl hybrid named Otus. When Otus’ city is attacked by pirates, he’s compelled to take motion. Impressively, as you make progress, you’ll start to note that Owlboy‘s world is much bigger than anticipated.

It’s a cross between a Metroidvania and a 16-bit platformer, excelling in each genres at play. Owlboy oozes character, that includes intelligent puzzles, witty companions, and an artwork type brimming with element. It’s a ravishing expertise by way of and thru and extremely enjoyable to play in addition.

Moss

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The one PSVR sport on this listing, Moss is without doubt one of the most ingenious platformers we’ve performed in recent times. You play as a tiny mouse named Quill, who’s chosen for a grand journey to save lots of the dominion. Moss takes full benefit of the PSVR know-how by presenting a twin management scheme. Quill is managed with the joysticks, however the movement controls can be utilized to work together with the setting.

Since Quill is conscious of your presence within the story, she’s going to usually lookup at you and thanks for serving to her full duties. As the sport progresses by way of deftly realized forest environments, the puzzles and enemy encounters require constant teamwork between you and Quill. That is when Moss is at its greatest when the promise of VR is proven off to such a excessive diploma. Charming and a ton of enjoyable to play, the one draw back of Moss is that you could end it in a handful of hours.

Learn our full Moss overview

Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove

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Yacht Membership Video games’ Shovel Knight artfully captures nostalgia whereas writing its personal historical past. Initially launched in 2014 after a profitable crowdfunding marketing campaign, Shovel Knight seemed like an homage to 16-bit period SNES platformers. And it was, however it additionally had fluid gameplay mechanics that have been way more fashionable.

That includes merely attractive stage design, glorious platforming, and a group of wonderful boss battles, enjoying as a small knight with a shovel as a sword is a rocking good time. Even higher, Shovel Knight is the reward that retains on giving. Since launch, Yacht Membership has dropped two new (free!) campaigns, with the ultimate enlargement, King of Playing cards, anticipated to launch later this yr.

Guacamelee! 2

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Guacamelee! was already an ideal Metroidvania, however Drinkbox Studios fully surpassed it with the sequel. As soon as once more you play as Juan Aguacate, a luchador with a singular means to show right into a rooster. Guacamelee! 2 options a way more spacious map to discover, extra talents, and an inspiring story.

The fight is fluid, the map is loaded with secrets and techniques, and the platforming is difficult however expertly designed. It’s additionally one of many uncommon Metroidvanias that may be performed cooperatively with as much as 4 gamers. We suggest enjoying the unique first, however each are nicely value your time.

SteamWorld Dig 2

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SteamWorld Dig 2 provides the identical steampunk and Western themes of the unique whereas refining the gameplay and exploration in welcome methods. This time round, you play as Dorothy, a heroine who additionally wields a pickaxe to chip away at rocks and dig deeper into the earth under.

Not like the unique, SteamWorld Dig 2 has a hard and fast stage design. The change makes for higher platforming sections, extra various environments, and customarily higher gameplay. With a better emphasis on puzzles and a neat RPG loop, SteamWorld Dig 2 feels extra like a Metroidvania — and a mighty good one at that.

Puzzler

Donut County

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After years of ready, Ben Esposito’s Donut County lastly launched in July. It was greater than definitely worth the wait. A physics puzzle sport, Donut County‘s premise and execution are novelly easy: Swallow objects right into a gap to make the opening bigger to swallow greater objects. It has drawn worthy comparisons to Katamari Damacy.

The residents of Donut County discover themselves under floor, and to find out how all of them acquired there, they every inform their very own story, which at all times includes dragging a gap across the cartoon environments to ship extra objects under. It has genuinely humorous dialogue and surprisingly deep undertones about social points. Most of all, although, Donut County offers a pair hours of pure, stress-free gameplay.

The Witness

The Witness, to place it merely, is without doubt one of the best puzzle video games of all time. That’s much more spectacular once you notice the whole lot of the sport is a colourful open-world island full of line puzzles. There’s additionally a whole lot of bizarre symbolism occurring right here, which isn’t all too shocking contemplating The Witness was made by Braid creator Jonathan Blow.

The road puzzles begin off easy and step by step impart knowledge that you just’ll want for future puzzles. Some puzzles even use the world round you to supply options. From unveiling patterns within the bushes to listening carefully to the sound of birds chirping, The Witness will check your wit and fortitude. It’s considered one of solely a handful of puzzle video games that compels you to work out options on paper once you’re stumped. The Witness is a really mesmerizing expertise that shouldn’t be missed by followers of puzzle video games.

Learn our full The Witness overview

Inside

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Similar to Playdead’s breakout hit Limbo, Inside is a mysterious, wordless story set in a darkish world starring a younger boy. A minimalistic shade palette and sound design add to the stripped down nature and improve the suspense all through. Inside will get straight into the motion. There’s no filler right here.

Each puzzle you remedy teaches you one thing about future puzzles and the world round you. Whereas we will’t say a lot concerning the story with out ruining it, by the point you attain the chilling conclusion, you’ll notice how completely good Inside‘s storytelling and interactive mechanics really are. It’s a profound, atmospheric expertise that surpasses Limbo in each means.

Learn our full Inside overview

Function-playing

Pyre

From the staff behind Bastion and Transistor, Pyre was considered one of 2017’s greatest indie video games. You play because the Reader, a mysterious particular person banished from society to stay in a form of purgatory with different, attention-grabbing outcasts. To return to society, you have to compete within the Rites, a basketball-esque 3v3 sport during which you’re employed as a staff in real-time to extinguish your opponent’s Pyre.

Every character has a distinct moveset, turning the sport into an action-roleplaying sport. In between battles, you journey throughout the wondrously illustrated world, which merely brims with character. Pyre can also be a superb visible novel, as a lot of the time is spent conversing with companions and fellow vacationers on the highway. There’s nothing fairly like Pyre, one of many really distinctive indie video games in the marketplace.

Learn our full Pyre overview

Moonlighter

Moonlighter is a number of video games in a single. First, it’s glorious stock administration and city simulator. Second, it’s an exquisite rogue-like in the identical vein as The Binding of Isaac. You play as a Shopkeeper who sells his wares to the townsfolk every day. You select the costs of your objects after which use the cash you earn to improve your store and city.

To maintain your store stocked, you must go into the randomly generated dungeons at evening to gather objects from enemies and treasure chests. It’s an attractive loop that works surprisingly nicely. Moonlighter has each nice motion and a number of the greatest city simulation mechanics we’ve seen in a sport of its sort. Even if you happen to don’t like stock administration video games, there’s a great likelihood Moonlighter will win you over.

The Swords of Ditto: Mormo’s Curse

A top-down motion RPG within the vein of The Legend of Zelda, The Swords of Ditto wouldn’t be on this listing if it weren’t for the post-launch updates made by developer onebitbeyond. The latest (free!) replace, Mormo’s Curse, fully restructured the expertise, eradicating permadeath to make development really feel a lot fairer.

The lovely artwork type, attention-grabbing dungeons, and charming storytelling made The Swords of Ditto a worthwhile play at launch final yr, however the brand new modifications make it a fully great expertise for followers thinking about old-school The Legend of Zelda-esque experiences.

Undertale

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In Undertale, you play as a anonymous youngster in an underground land full of numerous monsters. It’s a retro JRPG in type, however Undertale turns into a lot greater than that as you make your means by way of its stunning, hilarious, and heartbreaking story.

You’ll rapidly notice that the fight isn’t the place Undertale is meant to excel. It’s merely there as a tool, similar to the minimalistic visuals. Undertale will stick to you due to the tales its characters let you know and for the choices you make. Out of the entire video games on this listing, Undertale could be the one to make you see the world round you in a different way.

Sandbox/simulation

Stardew Valley

Stardew Valley, created by lone developer Eric Barone, rapidly turned a runaway hit when it launched in 2016. Designed as a non secular successor to Harvest Moon, Stardew Valley takes place in an idyllic city full of attention-grabbing residents. Your job is to stay the small city life, filling your days with farming, exploration, and small speak.

With an ideal relationship system, stunning 16-bit visuals, tantalizing every day loop, and multiplayer, it’s fairly straightforward to start out viewing Pelican City as your precise dwelling. Stardew Valley is the form of sport you’ll unwittingly dump 100 hours into, however you gained’t remorse any of your time spent residing the farming life.

Sports activities

Rocket League

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Rocket League combines soccer and racing to realize stupendously ridiculous ranges of enjoyable. Every participant drives round a big soccer area in a automobile chasing after a ball to knock into the opposing staff’s internet. It’s a surprisingly enthralling expertise that continues to please three years after its launch.

If you happen to haven’t tried Rocket League and are followers of sports activities and arcade racers, Rocket League is certain to entertain. And even if you happen to don’t like soccer or automotive video games, there’s a nonetheless a great likelihood you’ll like Rocket League. That’s how dang enjoyable it’s to play.

NBA 2K Playgrounds 2

NBA 2K Playgrounds 2 is a good possibility for hoops followers in search of an arcade expertise. In 2v2 contests, you’ll be able to play as each present NBA stars and all-time greats like Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant.

As a non secular successor to NBA Jam, Playgrounds 2 is loaded with unrealistic (however very cool) dunk animations and an array of neat power-ups together with the on-fire ball. Playgrounds 2 has a neat card accumulating system for unlocking gamers, a no-frills season mode, and ranked on-line play.

Strolling simulator

Journey

It’d be irresponsible to create a PS4 indies listing with out together with Journey, thatgamecompany’s third and greatest sport that’s generally considered one of many best video games of all time. In Journey, you play as a anonymous robed determine. Dropped in a big desert, you have to comply with visible clues to make progress.

There are not any phrases in Journey, neither is there any actual gameplay in addition to shifting and leaping. The world is superbly rendered and the understated narrative is one thing that everybody ought to expertise. It solely lasts a few hours, although it’s a panoramic couple of hours.

Gone House

Gone House tells some of the stirring and provocative tales we’ve skilled in video games. Set in 1995, you play as a 21-year-old lady who comes dwelling to Oregon, anticipating to reunite together with her household. As a substitute, she arrives to an empty dwelling. A primary individual strolling simulator, you step by step study what has occurred in your absence by exploring the home, studying notes and analyzing objects.

What’s most exceptional about Gone House is that though it tells a full story, it’s non-linear, as you uncover clues in whichever order you please. It’s a really shifting story about sexuality, household secrets and techniques, and love.

Learn our full Gone House overview

Night time within the Woods

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Night time within the Woods is a biting, hilarious, and in the end shifting story advised by anthropomorphic animals. You play as Mae, a cat and up to date faculty dropout who heads dwelling to Possum Springs. Her new perspective permits her to see what she beforehand couldn’t within the city. Slowly however certainly, Mae uncovers the city’s darkish previous and secrets and techniques.

Arrange as a reasonably sidescroller, Night time in Woods performs out like a visible novel. It should make you chuckle, it is going to make you cry, and it’d even trigger you to chuckle and cry all of sudden. With glorious writing and a forged of memorable characters, Night time within the Woods is an absolute can’t miss gem for these in search of a great yarn.

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