With so many great games expected to arrive in the coming 12 months, we've collected together some of the titles due out this year that have caught our collective eye in recent weeks. In no particular order, here's 13 indie games for 2013:
Monaco: What's Yours is Mine
For many people, the most anticipated indie release of the year is going to be Monaco. It's a top-down stealth game that attracted plenty of admiring glances when it was first teased to an eager public back in 2010. Pocketwatch Games' Monaco picked up the coveted Seumas McNally Grand Prize at the Independent Games Festival that year, and we've been waiting patiently for it ever since.
It's a heist game at its core, but a wonderfully distinctive visual style has captured imaginations everywhere, including ours. We really can't wait for this one.
Bit.Trip Presents Runner 2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien
The consistently excellent Gaijin Games are back in early 2013 with another Bit.Trip game, Runner 2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien (a tongue in-cheek title inspired by the names given to Western games in order to have them sell in Japan). It's another colourful and vibrant auto-scrolling platformer, and it tasks players with reaching the end of levels without crashing into any of the various obstacles that regularly try to get in your way. The voice of Mario, Charles Martinet, is set to provide narration for the cutscenes, only adding to the game's appeal.
One of the most popular indie games of recent times is Super Meat Boy. Team Meat's debut game went down a treat (it was one of the titles featured in Indie Game: The Movie, which certainly didn't hurt its chances), and the indie studio's long awaited follow up is nearing completion. Mew-Genics is that follow up, but details surrounding the game are still pretty thin on the ground, but we do know you cryogenically freeze cats. How barbaric.
The Showdown Effect
Backed once again by Paradox Interactive, Arrowhead Games (Magicka) are back on the scene with The Showdown Effect. It's a 2.5D multiplayer action game with a firm emphasis on over-the-top action and outrageous weaponry. 8 players will be able to duke it out in the platform arenas, with the ultimate goal being to kick ass in style. Fans of 80s and 90s action movies should definitely keep an eye on this one.
Some gamers want a little more challenge than others. Some gamers like a little bit more pain. For those who like it harsh and brutal, Neo Scavenger could be just what you're looking for. It's a post-apocalyptic adventure game, but where the Metros and the Fallouts of this world are all about experiencing an adventure against the backdrop of a decayed future, Neo Scavenger is all about survival, and although there's a story in there somewhere, you've got to stay alive long enough to work out what it is.
Given that you start the game with just a hospital gown and few disparate items to provide clues as to your identity, survival might be harder than it sounds. This is one game that looks like a masochist's wet dream.
Gunpoint is the creation of games journalist Tom Francis. It's a stealth-centric espionage game that has you infiltrating high tech buildings to, presumably, steal secret documents and stick people's staplers to their desks. That there promises to be "gratuitous face-punching" also captures our interest, but not as much as "unusual" electronic sabotage. We've no idea when this one's coming out (and neither does Mr Francis), but when it does it should come complete with a level editor, which is only going to add to its appeal. Definitely one to keep an eye on if you like your games sneaky sneaky.