Our Top 11 Indie Games to Play This Summer

With summer fast approaching, it’s safe to say that we’re all ready for a little R&R — and what better way to relax than with a new indie game? Below is a handful of our current indie recommendations, including games as wild as a fantasy tavern management sim and a VR stealth shooter that takes place entirely in a kayak.

Curse of the Dead Gods

A good roguelike enters the player into a graceful dance with death, engaging them in a tense risk/reward calculus. Curse of the Dead Gods manifests such a dynamic as a system of curses inflicted upon the player, conveying either abilities or debilities depending on context and the player’s playstyle.

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Shipbreaker

Centuries into the future, human colonization has entered a new “Gilded Age,” expanding its reach across the solar system — a massive undertaking that still happens to depend on blue-collar labor. Hardspace: Shipbreaker puts you in the shoes of a spaceship salvager on the front lines of this new industrial workforce, cutting up old ships and braving danger after danger in the name of an honest living.

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Dreamscaper: Prologue

Dreams have been the topic of scrutiny for centuries. What do they mean, and what can we learn from them? In Cassidy’s case, a good dream might mean learning a handy new technique for fighting otherworldly dangers. Dreamscaper: Prologue is an action roguelite that explores Cassidy’s excursions in lucid dreaming, including the effects it has on her real-world relationships.

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Thunder Rally

We all encounter our truest selves in the demolition derby. Thunder Rally fosters the kind of free-for-all mayhem that is designed to inspire ecstasy, pain, and awe in the face of rapturous destruction. Eight players duke it out in a revelry of flame and wreckage, and even if you die, Thunder Rally offers you the ability to commandeer weapons along the side of the arena.

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Aground

At first glance, Aground is a side-scrolling, mining-and-crafting affair like many others. But as you continue to develop your settlement, Aground slowly begins to reveal its depth; dragons, fighter jets, and even interplanetary combat await the intrepid adventurer. Aground uses familiar systems to furnish an RPG of surprising complexity.

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Save Your Nuts

Save your nuts. Has there ever been a more urgent directive? Save Your Nuts is a multiplayer party game that plays a lot like soccer: Players compete to store as many nuts as possible in their respective goals. Save Your Nuts’ levels, which contain a wide range of interactive elements from fireable cannons to trampolines, compel matches towards even higher levels of mania and disruption.

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The Pedestrian

What shenanigans does the little stoplight guy get into when they’re not guiding people across an intersection? The Pedestrian has the answer. Throughout the game, the player guides an animated pictogram of a person, yanked directly from an everyday restroom sign or construction placard, as they make their way across various platforming puzzles adorning signs throughout the city.

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Dread Nautical

“Fighting Lovecraftian abominations” is likely one of the last things you’d expect to do when embarking on a luxury cruise, yet the passengers of the Hope have little choice. Dread Nautical, a roguelite, turn-based, tactical RPG, pits a band of cruisegoers against a supernatural threat. It’s up to your discretion whether to rescue other survivors (and enjoy their buffs) or to play it safe.

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Crossroads Inn

If you’ve played a lot of RPGs, then you know all too well that a visit to the local inn can be one of the most pivotal detours in your journey — though rarely are you ever on the other side of the bar. Crossroads Inn, a tavern sim, puts you in the shoes of an innkeep who oversees supply chains, manages staff, and socializes with customers, all in a familiar, yet fantastical settin

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Help Will Come Tomorrow

It’s 1917 and a train crash occurs along the Trans-Siberian Railway. In the wake of the October Revolution, tensions are high between the survivors, who must navigate class animosities to brave the Siberian cold together. Help Will Come Tomorrow is a game about mediating these relationships and keeping the survivors alive and healthy even as resources slowly begin to dwindle.

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Phantom: Covert Ops

Three words: VR stealth kayak. Phantom: Covert Ops requires little more explanation — save the reassurance that the alchemy behind such an unlikely combination of elements just works. Paddling cautiously into enemy territory, silenced sniper rifle at the ready, you can engage targets lethally or infiltrate in the shadows, the choice is yours. All of it makes for tense, cinematic gameplay that’ll make you forget you aren’t actually treading water. This really is stealth action redefined for VR…

The game releases on 25th June and will be available on both Rift and Quest platforms.

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