With games like SEASON: A letter to the future, RE:CALL, 8-Bit Adventures 2, and A Space for the Unbound, 2023 is already a rocking year for indies — and it’s only January! But there’s no time to slow down. Indie Asylum — a diverse group of studios banding together under one flag to help and elevate each other — celebrated the last day of this jam-packed month with a showcase of its projects.
And though I thought it was already full, I can’t resist putting some of the event’s participants on my to-watch list. If you want to view the direct for yourself, I have the whole show below. Otherwise, read on for a breakdown of the titles that graced the Asylum Direct.
Games Showcased In The Asylum Direct
Worship – Chasing Rats Games
Unfairly, this game’s art style features two things I can’t resist: A black-and-white palette and hand-drawn visuals. Then the developers hit me with a Cult of the Lamb-like premise and an out-of-the-blue adorable inspiration? It’s just playing dirty now. Check out what the creators have to say for themselves:
Blindly serve a dreadful god and lead its cult in a fresh take on the roguelike genre inspired by Pikmin. Put on the robe of a cultist and ready your ceremonial dagger to serve the old god of your choosing in the grim universe of Worship.
This Bed We Made – Lowbirth Games
I’m not entirely sure what’s going on in this unsettling title, but I think that’s the point. But if unraveling a sinister-seeming mystery sounds like your cup of tea, be sure to check This Bed We Made out.
This Bed We Made is a third-person mystery game in which you play as a maid in a 1950s hotel and snoop around strangers’ rooms to uncover their deadly secrets. Discover what links the clients together in this tale of love, heartbreak and murder!
Broken Edge – Trébuchet
Another beautiful looking game, Broken Edge makes the showcase’s hosts look hilarious as they swipe around trying to defeat each other. One plays as a duelist while the other jumps in as a knight, but there are several other types of sword fighters to choose.
Broken Edge is a VR multiplayer fantasy dueling game where you embody historical swordfighters. Use their unique techniques and powers combined with cutting-edge fencing mechanics to claim victory against online opponents and climb the ranks!
Roots of Yggdrasil – ManaVoid Entertainment
Promising to unite city building and narrative — with a dash of roguelike — Roots of Yggdrasil has you take control of Sunna. The Viking’s task is to reach the top of the World tree, building settlements on a variety of procedurally generated locations. However, a force called the Dark Void is out for you. Though the game is in early development (with a Kickstarter currently ongoing), there’s already a demo up right now.
Roots of Yggdrasil is a narrative roguelike city-building game set after Ragnarok. Build settlements and restore your Viking clan scattered across the cosmos. Can you survive the end of the world?
Checkmate Showdown – BadRez Games
Framed as a “a combat game with a chess-like strategic twist,” BadRez’s next title looks intriguing. Sadly, we didn’t get a ton of information on the upcoming project during the show, but hopefully fighting game fans can look forward to more news soon.
(Unnamed Project) – B Df’rent Games
According to its website, B Df’rent Games “is the exclusive, worldwide licensee and developer of software games, based upon the images, films, music and archival materials of the filmmaker Charlie Chaplin.” If that doesn’t get your attention, I don’t know what will.
FORWARD: Escape the Fold – Two Tiny Dice
This pixelated card game comes from a France-based solo developer who has already released Forward: Escape the Fold on PC, but today’s presentation revealed the title is coming to mobile. Along with the platform change, players will find new objects, enemies, and a fresh playable character.
FORWARD: Escape the Fold – Ultimate Edition was created to be the perfect bite sized roguelike dungeon crawler. Choose your champion and face a relentless crawl through the card-based dungeons, collect items to power your abilities and defeat the gruesome monsters facing you. But keep going FORWARD!
BIOMORPH – Lucid Dreams Studio
Biomorph’s leading character may look cute, but its main power is to inhabit the body of any creature it has killed. If you still want to pet it after that, you do you. But that power does present interesting options for ever-changing gameplay options.
BIOMORPH is a soulslike metroidvania game. Fight terrifying monsters and steal their shape and powers! Solve ingenious puzzles and navigate a stunning 2D world. Meet quirky characters, rebuild a city, and uncover the secrets of a sprawling, fallen civilization… and of your own mysterious origins.
Two Falls – Unreliable Narrators
With two very different main characters leading this narrative-heavy game, Two Falls offers a glimpse of the world from both protagonists’ eyes. To reflect this, the developer uses two distinct art styles to highlight the, sometimes opposing, perspectives. So, players will often see one location in startlingly different lights as the story unfolds.
Immerse yourself in the harsh wilderness of 17th century Canada through the eyes of Maikan, a young Innu, and Jeanne, a French woman who crossed the Atlantic to start a new life. Decide how the characters will survive, and watch the impact of your choices unfold in this coming-of-age story!