Oh, my sweet summer indie games.
June gives with one hand and takes with the other. The year’s most exciting games event is almost upon us, but it’s also the beginning of the summer games drought. It’s slim pickings for those into their big-budget blockbuster bazillion-A behemoths. While many watch E3’s conferences and look longingly towards the future, however, you can be playing some new indie games right here, right now. Here’s what’s in store for this month.
Vampires used to be pretty cool until Twilight came along and made them all sparkly and glum. Hopefully, Vampyr can work towards restoring our faith in the pasty parasites.
The latest from Dontnod Entertainment of Remember Me and Life is Strange fame, Vampyr looks to continue their focus on story and character interaction we’ve come to expect – with one major departure. As the newly-turned Dr Jonathan Reid you’ll be trying to help the citizens of early twentieth century London… or choosing to feast on them for more power.
The moral quandary of whether to be a righteous but weak vampire or a mighty, self-serving one should make Vampyr an action RPG with a difference. On a side note, how sick is that Don’t Fear The Reaper cover in the trailer?
Vampyr skulks onto PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC on the 5th of June.
I’m gonna be completely honest here: I don’t 100% understand how Haimrik works. The zany trailer isn’t of much help, either. But I know for a fact that I’d love to find out.
This medieval puzzler-cum-platformer-cum-action-adventure-I-think is a tale of a young scribe who comes across a magic book. Granted with the ‘Power of The Words’, Haimrik activates words as he walks across the world with varying results, which he can harness to fight his enemies.
What draws me towards Haimrik is its rambunctious cartoon animation, violently portrayed in a juxtaposition of muted sepia and gratuitous splashes of claret. This delightfully weird egg arrives on PS4 and PC on the 19th of June.
Shape of the World
Are games art? Are walking simulators games? I’ll leave you to debate over those amongst yourselves. In the meantime I’ll be checking out the stunning little Shape of the World.
Shape of the World is all about the joy of discovery. Completely free of hazards, puzzles or other challenges, it’s an otherworldly sandbox in which the world reacts to your presence. As you explore the vivid and surreal landscapes they procedurally morph, grow and blossom in surprising ways. Even the atmospheric soundtrack adapts dynamically to match this passive interaction.
Clocking in at a fleeting one to three hours of playtime, Shape of the World looks like a wondrous experience that you can enjoy in a single sitting. It blooms onto PS4, Xbox and PC on the 5th of June – and you can play the demo right now.
Love or hate Wipeout, one criticism you certainly couldn’t level at the series is that “it’s a bit slow”. Antigraviator takes that blistering blueprint and hacks it beyond the limits of sanity and restraint to deliver an anti-gravity racer with unlimited speed.
Unlimited speed?! I’m getting motion sickness just thinking about it. But that’s a promise: avoid hitting anything and your Grav will accelerate indefinitely. Easier said than done, mind, with rockslides, mines and missiles all vying for your demise.
As well as both local and online multiplayer, Antigraviator boasts Grav customisation so you can tweak your mobile deathtrap to your heart’s content. Antigraviator speeds onto PC on the 6th of June, with a console release to follow later.
Perhaps the most anticipated update for agricultural monolith Stardew Valley was its multiplayer mode – no easy feat for a solo sim. Over two years later, we finally have access to the multiplayer beta. Re:Legend, on the other hand, was built for farming with chums from the ground up.
This cutesy RPG features fishing, farming, building and item crafting with up to three buddies. The real focus of Re:Legend, however, is on monster raising. The world of Ethia is crawling with Magnus, mythical creatures that you can fight or capture. Tame one and you can nurture it to grow and evolve.
Mount them, battle them or even use them for farming – Re:Legend’s Magnus system looks deep and addictive. Capture Re:Legend when it arrives on PC, PS4, Xbox One and Switch at some point in June.
Warhammer 40,000: Inquisitor – Martyr
The Warhammer universe lends itself so well to games, with its rad fantasy factions and their propensity to always be at war with each other. We’ve had shooters, strategies, sports and probably other genres beginning with ‘s’. For the first time, Inquisitor – Martyr brings us a Warhammer action RPG.
As an Inquisitor of the Imperium of Man, you’ll travel the Caligari galactic sector, laying waste to hordes of Chaos heretics. If you’ve ever played Diablo you’ll feel at home here, but Inquisitor – Martyr adds to the ARPG formula with destructible environments, a cover system and customisable missions.
After its stint in Early Access, the ‘final’ launch will only be the beginning. Like how Diablo III has sustained itself longer than anyone could have imagined, Warhammer 40,000: Inquisitor – Martyr promises regular seasons with huge free content updates to come. Fight for the Emperor on June 5th on PC, with PS4 and Xbox One versions releasing next month.
Slow and steady wins the race, as they say. After spending 1,611 days in Early Access and originally going by a completely different name, – ‘Next Car Game’ – Wreckfest is finally at the finish line.
It goes without saying from its new moniker that Wreckfest isn’t about racing respectfully and unscathed. With painstakingly simulated physics, you’ll be hurtling into your opponents at full speed and buckling their vehicles into shapes they were never intended to be bent into.
This mad smash-’em-up features a showroom-full of varied, customisable cars – but that’s not all. You’ll also be able to get your daredevil mitts on school buses, lawn mowers and even combine harvesters. Wreckfest collides with PC on June the 14th.
Well, that lot should keep you busy, right? If any of the above have caught your eye or you’ve got something else on your wishlist for June, let us know in the comments below.
James loves a deep action-adventure game, RPG or Metroidvania. He can often be found in The Indie Game Website’s review section casting his critical eye over the latest indie games.