When you think better, those AAA games aren’t always that great, right? I mean, there are some very strong contenders but, generally, Indie developers always put that extra amount of effort in order to bring the quality game to the market. With that in mind, Indie games often tend to look like full-priced games, and even the gameplay quality is vastly improved in many games. Indie games are not to be overlooked, and that’s why I decided to put up a list of the top 21 Indie games for PC. Enjoy, and save some money with me, as the list of best PC Indie games is below.
What are Indie Games?
The video games that are usually developed independently by individuals or small teams without the financial and logistical backing or support of a big game publisher are referred to as “indie games,” or independent games. These games are frequently recognized by their distinctive artistic approach, cutting-edge gameplay elements, and imaginative storytelling. These games have their own big fan base.
Indie games are frequently made on a smaller scale and with scarce or really low resources, in contrast to mainstream or AAA (triple-A) games, which are typically created by huge and big studios with substantial/high-level budgets. Here unconventional concepts can be explored, gameplay mechanisms can be experimented with, and developers can take chances that cannot be possible in a larger scheme, more commercially focused games.
What are the Best Indie Games for PC
The selection process of the top indie games can be often tiring. Because they are much more common than many other title genres, choosing the best could take days. Based on our testing and experience, these are the best indie games available today –
Have you heard about this horror game? It’s easily one of the best horror games I’ve ever played, and not putting it on the list would be a crime! And yes, this is an indie game, folks. It has everything you want from a horror game; spooky atmosphere, depressive feeling, sense of desperation and pure dread. It’s played from the first-person perspective, which makes the game more immersive, and thanks to great visuals and sound design, you’ll get immersed in the game pretty fast! Now grab your headphones, dim the lights and play it, if you dare!
This list should include the terrifying horror game SOMA. With its ominous mood, sense of sorrow, and bewitchingly stunning images, it provides an immersive experience. You’ll be lured into a terrifying realm as you play in first person. Dim the lights, put on your headphones, and get ready for a scary voyage.
We’ve all heard about that game inspired by 1930s cartoons, but no one dares to play it, right? Well, if you were braver than you are, you would easily enjoy this game. The game is ruthless, and although it’s a run-and-gun game, the constant challenge and urge to stay on the move are the main factors here. Plus, the bosses are easily in class with Dark Souls! Oh, and don’t forget to learn something from this game, and that’s to NEVER make a deal with the devil… never!
8-bit games are now forever into the oblivion, but Undertale seems to do something different. Wait… what… how? Undertale manages to be one of the best indie games ever, and its 8-bit graphics doesn’t hurt the game at all! The sound design isn’t impressive, neither are visuals, but the whole presentation and the execution are where the game shines. In Undertale, every decision you make will affect the finale, and let you fight the different boss. Sure, there are good and bad endings, but I’ll leave it for you to discover.
Spelunky will invoke your explorer’s instincts. This game is a unique platformer that takes you on an epic journey through the procedurally created levels as you explore various places in order to find treasure. Spelunky isn’t all that simple, as there are monsters and traps on your way to the treasure. And, oh boy, they are dangerous! The environment is fully-destructible, so you can use various measures in order to survive. Think twice- react once!
At the first glance, Inside strongly reminds me of Limbo. When I looked a little bit on the internet, I found out why. Inside uses the same game engine as Limbo, and although it’s a lot similar, it still is a very distinct game. The game will immediately throw you in a dark, grim and depressive environment, with only some of the parts colored. Inside is also a very silent game, almost in a creepy way! I often found myself under constant tension, as I expected some sort of jumpscare, but don’t worry- the game isn’t horror, so you can enjoy it.
6. Her Story
How good is the graphics in the game from zero to Her Story? Just kidding! If you played the game, you know what I mean- a series of real-life sequences in the game. The game is essentially all about that. You cycle through the various police documents and listen to various interviews in order to solve the case of a murder. You’ll finish the game in under five hours, but the immersion and shivers I got from this game can never be forgotten! It’s such a fine piece of a game, and it’s cheap as hell.
7. No Man’s Sky
Ohh, what can I say about No Man’s Sky? It made me so mad upon its release, and I immediately started to hate the game. The developers did quite a BAD job of promoting the game and giving us some false info and advertising, that makes me want to press charge against them personally! Now, they posted few updates that bring some of the promising features, and the game isn’t that bad at all. It’s an open-world game for PC, where you explore procedurally-generated planets and gather various items. And if you hope to get into the center of a Galaxy, well… that’s done crappy, so don’t expect any special cutscenes or something like that.
8. Don’t Starve
Don’t starve, or else you’ll get too skinny, and that’s not healthy! I’m serious about that, so don’t laugh. Jokes aside, Don’t Starve is a game about… well, not starving! In this cartoonish video game, you’ll get the chance to experience one of the most compelling survival experiences on PC. Defend your base from the various monsters, collect food and items to survive and live a long and happy life! It’s simple, but once you get to play it, the game will kick your ass with how challenging it is. You can also get your friend to play with you, and starve together. Oh, I forgot, it’s about not starving!
Get ready for an ultimate psycho-horror experience. This beautiful PC Indie game looks gorgeous, and it’s a great cyber-punk game. Finally, a cyber-punk game aside from Deus Ex, thank you! Now, this isn’t an action-packed game, but more a story-based game, where you are Observer in search for some clues about the case. The game is creepy as hell! Those robotic monsters are still haunting my dreams, and the futuristic, yet empty and depressive atmosphere are something you won’t forget. I simply couldn’t spend $20 in a better way!
10. Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice
Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice is an indie game, but as the developers said, it’s an “independent AAA game”. Interpret it how you want, but Hellblade is one of my favorite indie games. It looks stunning, and the sound design is amazing. The headphones with this game work like a charm! Those voices in Senua’s head are the only HUD you’ll get, and the creepiness and darkness in this game achieved just a few horror games! It’s an absolute horror experience, with a focus on story-telling that will leave you speechless after you play it.
11. Gone Home
You know that feeling when you are absent for a long time, and then you return home and your family greets you and your mom makes you your favorite dish? Well, the protagonist in this game doesn’t have that luck. So, what’s happening here, why is it so dark and silent? The answers to those questions are in the game. It’s a story-based game, and the story is told through the various pictures, documents, and hints that lead to a satisfying conclusion in the end. This type of game is for relaxing after a hard day of work, with a cup of tea or a coffee.
12. Stardew Valley
A pleasant and immersive farming simulation game, Stardew Valley offers a relaxed gaming experience. You must put in a lot of effort to revitalize the neglected farm you inherit. Plant and care for crops, look after animals, mine for materials, and establish connections with the community. The game provides a wide range of engaging tasks, a nice pixel art aesthetic, and a piece of tranquil music. Because Stardew Valley is so open-ended, you may set your own objectives and play at your own speed, which makes it the ideal getaway from the pressures of daily life.
Call me a pessimist, or however you want, but when I see the atmosphere like in Limbo, I can’t be happier! It’s another dark game, with slightly colored objects and an atmosphere that will make you think about suicide! It’s so dark, depressive and miserable as you try to survive every sequence and survive in one piece. This game also offers some platforming but also puzzles scenarios, where you’ll get to test your brain. And the monsters in this game are badass, especially that giant spider that took me by surprise and killed me so many times before I finally escaped.
14. Darkest Dungeon
When it comes to games, I’m more about real-time action. But, Darkest Dungeon is a worthy turn-based role-playing game. Red Hook Studios did a really nice job of making the game accessible, and because it’s a 2D PC game, it can be played on almost every PC. Cool, isn’t it? Now, this game isn’t simple by any means. You’ll have to explore the dark dungeons under a gothic mansion and collect various items as you fight against the unforgiving enemies. The whole experience is simply a brilliance, and as the Christmas is approaching, get ready to buy this game at a huge discount!
15. Hollow Knight
Hollow Knight is a hand-drawn 2D action game, but the game packs quite a punch when it comes to graphics. It’s a very colorful game, and the artwork is simply phenomenal. The gameplay is based on platforming and fighting dangerous creatures as you explore caverns and caves along the way. Hollow Knight has that fine balance between being too hard and too easy. It’s a game that offers a little bit of everything for everyone, and I’m sure you’ll love it!
Years after its initial release, you can clearly see that Super Mario Bros had such a big influence on later games. Braid took direct inspiration from that game, but with a more colorful experience, bringing a lot to the table. Its world is vivid, and not only that you’ll do platforming, but you’ll also be able to admire the in-game world. Now, the reason I mentioned Super Mario Bros is that Braid has the same goal, and it’s saving a goddamn princess! Braid is like a sweet child of the aforementioned game and Spelunky, lying comfortably between the two giants.
Tacoma offers a very enjoyable narrative sci-fi experience, and if you liked Gone Home, you’ll like this one too. This game doesn’t offer too much to do in terms of action, but the game’s story makes up for it. the high-tech space station in the game looks amazing, along with the characters that greatly influence the story. If you like exploration and a little laid-back approach, then this game is amazing for you! You’ll quickly get immersed in the world of Tacoma, and embrace it with a full force!
18. Dead Cells
Dead Cells has visuals that I much appreciate in this kind of game. The graphics are a bit on the cartoonish side, but the light effects and general tone are perfect. This is a challenging 2D game that will put you in a role of a warrior who is fighting his way through the procedurally-created castles. Don’t expect to be spoiled by this game. There are NO checkpoints and no save games. It’s either enemies or you- kill or be killed!
19. The Stanley Parable
Is The Stanley Parable a game? Yes, it’s a game. No, it isn’t. Wait, what? This exploration game loves to play with your mind, and although there isn’t any action, the great story and the concept of the game will make you love it. You play as Stanley Parable and your mission is to follow the story because you aren’t Stanley Parable and you don’t follow the story. You know what? Go and play the game for just a couple of bucks and enjoy it. Don’t ask me about the story, though!
Ever wondering what good game can you get for less than a buck? Well, here’s the answer- Investigator. This walking simulator with horror elements is set in a post-apocalyptic world that looks amazing. You’ll survive the harshest conditions such as snow, extreme cold, rain, muddy and wet terrains and those creepy killers that scared the crap out of me. Oh, and the game is created in CryEngine, so expect killer graphics and lots of tiny details.
21. This War of Mine
How well would you fare as a survivor in WW2 era? Well, This War of Mine has the answer to that question. This unforgivable game will let you taste the struggle of everyday lifelong away from the frontlines, as you carefully manage every resource that you pick up. You defend your shelter every day, upgrade it and feed your hungry inhabitants, and go hunting when the night comes. This simple workflow leads to not-that-simple decisions, and surely the game will reward you with some resources, or with a raid on your shelter, leaving you without supplies.
If you grew tired of spending a huge amount of money on the “best” games, these Indie games should do the trick. I mean, I played every single game from the list and I’ve crafted it especially for you, and no… there is no need to thank me! What game will you buy? Will you go for some action titles like Cuphead, Spelunky or Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice, or maybe go with some horror? If you never played any game on this list, I suggest you start now. Save some money, have a nice time alone or with your friends and don’t forget to tell me which one you bought. And if you think there is a great Indie game missing from our list, well… do not hesitate to tell us!