back to top

25 Indie Video Games That Are Way Better Than AAA Titles

Clear your schedule because these games are seriously good.

Posted on

Recently we asked members of the BuzzFeed Community to recommend what they thought were the best indie video games of all time. Here are some of their answers.

1. Life Is Strange

Dontnod Entertainment

What it's about: The game's plot focuses on Max Caulfield, an 18-year old photography student who discovers that she has the ability to rewind time while saving her best friend. The pair soon learn however, that changing the past can sometimes lead to a devastating future.

"Hands down the best indie game I have ever played. Besides the story, my favorite part is that you can make your own choices which makes it feel so realistic. I also fell in love with the characters, and have laughed and cried multiple times while playing." – lexid5

Available on: PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.

Advertisement

2. Little Nightmares

Tarsier Studios

What it's about: Little Nightmares is a dark, whimsical tale that confronts all your childhood fears. You play as Six, a hungry nine-year-old girl who is trapped in a dollhouse inhabited by corrupted souls looking for their next meal.

"It's a beautiful, dark puzzle-platform game with a great story." – oliviamae

Available on: PC, PS4, and PS4.

3. Typoman

Brainseed Factory

What it's about: Typoman is a puzzle-based platformer which calls on the player to alter the environment by changing, creating, or destroying words, in order to progress to the next level.

"It sounds simple, but the game also makes sure to up its own ante throughout each level. It's also really cute, challenging, and fun!" – yougomollycoco

Available on: PC.

4. Slime Rancher

Monomi Park

What it's about: In Slime Rancher you play as Beatrix LeBeau, a young woman who moves to a planet far from Earth so she can attempt to make a living wrangling slimes. You must help her construct her ranch and explore the environment in order to collect, raise, feed, and breed the slimes.

"Slime Rancher is an amazing, adorable game. It also has a storyline that'll rip your heart out, so that's fun, even if it meant I was bawling on my bed at 2am when I hit the end of it." – starfond

Available on: PC and Xbox One.

5. Undertale

Toby Fox

What it's about: Undertale is a role-playing game where players control a human child who has fallen into the Underground. Along the way, you are required to not only solve numerous puzzles, but decide whether you want to murder the monsters or instead pacify and spare them. These choices affect the game, with the dialogue, characters, and story changing based on the outcomes.

"Undertale really took every conception of a video game and turned it on its head. The characters, the music... all of it is so perfect and much, much better than a big budget game." – SolarisWillows

Available on: PS4, Playstation Vita, and PC.

6. Monument Valley

Ustwo Games

What's it about: In Monument Valley, you manipulate impossible architecture to guide a silent princess through mazes of optical illusions.

"One of my favourite games of all time. It has an amazing storyline told beautifully through interesting graphics and well-written characters." – katharinea437da5d6b

Available on: iOS.

Advertisement

7. INSIDE

Playdead

What it's about: Haunted and alone, a boy finds himself drawn into a surreal environment where he has to escape mysterious forces.

"The graphics are breathtaking and the soundtrack is simple but helps the gameplay in the best way, heightening both suspense and wonder. Plus the narrative, which makes your heart break during certain parts of the game, makes you care about the main character." – Jenna Christine, Facebook

Available on: Currently PS4, PC, and Xbox One, but it will be released on Nintendo Switch and iOS in the future.

8. Dirty Bomb

Splash Damage

What it's about: Set in London after a series of "dirty bomb" attacks, the game features two teams completing various objectives whilst fighting one another.

"My favorite shooter game! It's super fun and fast-paced to play, and it's free on Steam." – rcstarch

Available on: PC.

9. Oxenfree

Night School Studio

What it's about: In Oxenfree, players assume the role of teenager Alex on a weekend trip to a local island. There, seemingly supernatural events occur and Alex and her friends must unravel the secrets of the island.

"You’re basically given complete control over the main character Alex, and can mold her into whatever kind of person you want. Pair that with a beautiful art style, an ode to classic teen movies, and an eerily beautiful soundtrack, and this game will easily suck you in for multiple treks around Edwards Island."

joell486ac020f

Available on: PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC, Android, and iOS.

10. What Remains Of Edith Finch

Giant Sparrow

What it's about: The game follows a collection of strange tales about the Finch family and their home in Washington state. As Edith, you explore the colossal Finch house, searching for stories as you she tries to figure out why she's the last one in her family left alive.

"I just finished What Remains of Edith Finch and it was amazing! It's not a game in a classic sense, but more of a visual narrative. It's for sure my favorite game ever."

m40f3f6d80

Available on: PS4, Xbox One, and PC.

11. Hyper Light Drifter

Heart Machine

What it's about: Drifters of this world are the collectors of forgotten knowledge, lost technologies, and broken histories. Your drifter however, is suffering from an unknown illness, and hopes to discover a cure by traveling further into the lands of Buried Time.

susiemeine

Available on: PS4, Xbox One, and PC.

Advertisement

12. The Turing Test

Bulkhead Interactive

What it's about: You play as Ava Turing, an engineer for the International Space Agency sent to discover the cause behind the disappearance of a ground crew stationed on Jupiter. Upon arrival, a series of puzzles awaits you – tests which, according to the station's AI, Tom, can only be solved by a human.

Marrubi

Available on: PS4, Xbox One, and PC.

13. The Binding Of Isaac

Edmund McMillen/ Florian Himsl

What it's about: Featuring a rogue-like gameplay, The Binding Of Isaac follows the story of Isaac's mother hearing the voice of God who demands a sacrifice be made to prove her faith. Hearing this, Isaac escapes into the basement where he faces deranged enemies, lost brothers and sisters, his fears, and eventually his mother.

"The Binding of Isaac has a great gameplay including having items that can alter the way you play. Even if you finish, there are lots of achievements to unlock." – gurkantuna15

Available on: PC.

14. Journey

Thatgamecompany

What it's about: As a nameless, cloaked traveller, you only have one goal: walk towards the shining mountain in the distance. Along the way you'll perhaps meet other players on the same journey who are able to meet and assist you. The only form of communication you have however, is a musical chime.

"Journey is a masterpiece with its music and visuals. The whole game is incredibly serene and I recommend it to everyone." – Jayson05

Available on: PS3 and PS4.

15. Unravel

ColdWood Interactive

What it's about: Unravel follows the adventures of Yarny, a small anthropomorphic creature made of red yarn. The player must navigate him through the environment, utilising the unravelling yarn which makes up Yarny to solve puzzles, avoid dangerous creatures, and transverse obstacles.

"Unravel has a touching storyline, incredible graphics, and some really challenging puzzles." – Jayson05

Available on: PS4, Xbox One, and PC.

16. Stardew Valley

Eric Barone/ConcernedApe

What it's about: In Stardew Valley, the player takes on the role of a character who, to get away from the hustle of an office job, takes over their grandfather's farm. Here you must manage the character's time and energy to clear land, plant and tend crops, raise livestock, and engage in social activities in order to expand your farm.

"It's a phenomenal game that's very peaceful and serene. I never thought working on a farm would be this much fun. Also, you can get married and fight slimes in a cave. What's not to love?" – anthonystephen1087

Available on: PC, PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch.

Advertisement

17. Papers, Please

Lucas Pope/3909

What it's about: The communist state of Arstotzka has just ended a six-year war with its neighbouring countries. Your job as immigration inspector is to control the flow of people entering the Arstotzkan border who may be hidden smugglers, spies, or terrorists. Using only the documents provided by travellers, you must decide who can enter and who will be turned away or arrested.

"This game is truly one of the most absorbing and fascinating gaming experiences I've ever had. You're presented with constant moral choices, some big, some small. But the tense, dark atmosphere and the constant worry about making enough money to provide for your family makes it really hard to always be a good person." – Sarah Doherty Granoff

Available on: PC, iOS, and PlayStation Vita.

18. Night In The Woods

Infinite Fall

What it's about: College dropout Mae Borowski returns home to the former mining town of Possum Springs to resume her former life and reconnect with the friends she left behind. But things aren't the same and there's something hiding in the woods.

"I love Night in the Woods! Everything from the aesthetics, to the storyline, and the relationships you build with the characters is great. It also hits close to reality since Mae is still trying to find out how everything fits into her life... I mean, who hasn't gone through that?" – gustavosandovalv

Available on: Currently on PS4 and PC, with an Android and iOS version being released in 2018.

19. Kerbal Space Program

Squad

What it's about: In the game, players direct a space program that is staffed and crewed by humanoid aliens known as "Kerbals". The main objective is to build a space-worthy craft, capable of flying its crew out into space without killing them.

"Having played over 1,000 hours of it, I have to vote for Kerbal Space Program. It's difficult but fun, and it's educational but exciting. Plus, the game has a great community of players." – joekcom

Available on: PC, PS4, and Xbox One.

20. TowerFall Ascension

Matt Makes Games

What it's about: TowerFall Ascension is an archery combat arena game where players fight each other with arrows and head-stomps until only one player remains.

"Amazing music, great multi-player co-op gameplay, fast paced, and extremely addicting. It really deserves a lot more love." – ddane

Available on: PS4, Xbox One, Playstation Vita, PC, and Nintendo Switch.

21. Shovel Knight

Yacht Club Games

What it's about: Presented in 8-bit graphics, players become Shovel Knight, wielder of the Shovel Blade, who collects treasure and fights against the Order of No Quarter to save his lost beloved.

"Shovel Knight is a super fun, old-style platformer with amazing music and graphics. It's very challenging but rewarding!" – ashleyh40bd1762f

Available on: Nintendo Switch, PS3, PS4, PS Vita, PC, Nintendo 3DS, and Wii U.

Advertisement

22. Pit People

The Behemoth

What it's about: If you're familiar with The Behemoth's previous work like Castle Crashers, Pit People follows a similar art style and humour. In this game, players need to rally their troops and plot a course across an apocalyptic wasteland filled with sinister electrobots and deadly vampires.

"I'm currently obsessed with Pit People. It's a really fun, turn-based strategy game with some strong Pokémon vibes." – j4c10cca47

Available on: Xbox One and PC.

23. Cuphead

StudioMDHR Entertainment Inc.

What it's about: Inspired by cartoons of the 1930s, Cuphead has players fighting a series of bosses in order to repay a debt to the devil.

"OH MY GOD MY SWEET BABY CUPHEAD, I LOVE YA." – thefeelingismutual

Available on: Xbox One and PC.

24. The Path

Tale of Tales

What it's about: Based on old variations of Little Red Riding Hood, The Path involves players controlling six different sisters who are sent one-by-one by their mother to see their sick grandmother. Whether you choose to stay on the path or wander the woods is up to you.

"The Path is less a game and more so a piece of art that you can wander through and garner a story and meaning from. It's gorgeous, weird, and has a creepy, great soundtrack, but I absolutely adore it." – Shannon Lumpkin, Facebook

Available on: PC.

25. That Dragon, Cancer

Numinous Games/Ryan and Amy Green

What it's about: That Dragon, Cancer was initially developed to relate to Ryan and Amy Green's experience of raising their son Joel, who was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Following his death four years later, much of the game was reworked to memorialise and personalise their time and interactions with Joel for the player.

"Different and super sad, but beautiful in its own way." – Jorge Vilar, Facebook

Available on: PC and iOS.

Note: Submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.

Want to be featured in similar BuzzFeed posts? Follow the BuzzFeed Community on Facebook and Twitter.

Promoted

Every. Tasty. Video. EVER. The new Tasty app is here!

Dismiss