Best indie game
Up until recently, Nintendo didn't allow independent developers to release their titles on Nintendo hardware. That changed within the past 10 years and we're super happy it did. Here are the best indie games that made their way on Nintendo Switch.
1. Untitled Goose Game
You get to run around a small village, stealing things, breaking others, and messing up everyone's day. Since you play as an adorable goose, you can't be morally opposed to the destructive content of the game. Everyone knows geese are ornery, which further adds to this game's appeal. Unlike other games that have you going around helping random NPCs, this one lets you live vicariously through your inner goose as you go around messing with people's lives and cackling to yourself about what you've done. All I have to say is HONK HONK HONK! -Rebecca Spear
2. Ori and the Blind Forest
Equal parts beautiful, challenging, and touching, Ori and the Blind Forest is one of the best indie games to release in the past decade regardless of platform. Though we are anxiously awaiting the sequel, the original earns stars for stunning environments, a compelling narrative, and a difficulty level that will have you screaming at your screen. Players control Ori, a white guardian spirit, and Sein, the light and eyes of the Forest's Spirit tree, in this platform-adventure game solving puzzles while trying to bring balance to the world.
Ori must recover three main elements to save the forest of Nibel, but this is not a task for the casual player. The platforming is challenging, requiring pinpoint accuracy and perfect timing, and the story is a gripping coming-of-age tale that will draw you in. Plus, it has an amazing soundtrack. The Definitive Edition has a few new modes, including an easier difficulty and an even more challenging "One life" mode, making it more accessible to players of all skill levels. It is definitely worth picking up. -Sara Gitkos
Cuphead delivers on every conceivable front. From its tight 2D side-scrolling combat to its absolutely jaw-dropping art style, this indie passion project manages to outclass many of its AAA contemporaries. Cuphead simply oozes style and originality, presenting players with some of the best animations in video game history. This bright world filled with oddball characters is only made even livelier by an incredible big band era jazz soundtrack. What started as an Xbox exclusive is now one of the must-own games for Nintendo Switch. -Miles Dompier
4. Hollow Knight
This is one of those beautifully difficult games out there. Since you lose all your money when you die, the stakes are a lot greater and require you to play more skillfully. I love the challenge it brings. There are also different endings for you to discover, giving the game plenty of replay value. You'll definitely want to play through the levels more than once. The game is both simple and incredibly complex. Finally, the art style and haunting music are amazing. If the beauty of this game doesn't move you, are you even human? -Rebecca Spear
5. Stardew Valley
When Stardew Valley hit the scene back in 2016, I was immediately in. I grew up playing games like Harvest Moon, so a new IP farm sim meant I was extra excited. I expected the standard gameplay, but I didn't expect that I'd come to love (and replay) this game so much. You have a mine, seasons, a farm, a town this is struggling, and the evil Jojamart that wants to put the local market out of business. Along with all of these aspects are romance options, the ability to build your home, exploration, raising animals, and plenty more.
Stardew Valley is easily one of my favorite games because the developer put care into every aspect of gameplay to create something fun and soothing instead of stressful. I love watching my crops grow, participating in festivals, and falling in love over and over again. It's a beautifully polished product, which is something I don't often say about any game, much less an indie. -Jen Karner
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