Ones To Watch 2014: Indies Part Two

We’re no doubt scratching the surface when it comes to Indie games coming out next year, but following on from last Friday’s initial selection of games, we’re back with another handful of titles and studios to keep an eye on in the new year.

We start off with a sequel to one of our favourite Indie games of the last few years.

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1TW-Velocity2X

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Velocity and Velocity Ultra have been big successes for FuturLab, so it’s no surprise that they are working on another title in the series. Rather than resting on its laurels, Velocity 2X comes with a twist and gives us a chance to get out of the spaceship we’ve been flying in the first game and kick some ass on foot as well!

You play as Kai Tana, who blacked out while travelling through a wormhole in space. Unfortunately her Quarp Jet chassis was ruptured and she’s ended up somewhere inhabited by a race called the Vokh. The gameplay is as you’d expect for the flying sections, but the on foot stuff is just as slick. We’ve been promised moon bases, space stations and alien planets.

Bring it on!

1TW-Hotline2

Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number looks set to continue the total overkill of the first game, which was a fast paced blood-fest that required razor sharp reflexes to get through.

The sequel has already seen controversy, as a scene strongly hinting at sexual assault was flagged up by Cara Ellison at PC Gamer for making her feel like walking away from the game. The devs are now ‘reconsidering’ the scene so hopefully they can push the boundaries without overstepping the mark.

Hotline Miami was one of those games you just couldn’t put down and you can expect more of the same from the sequel. Wrong Number takes place before and after the events of the original Hotline Miami so will tie in nicely with the storyline and will further flesh out the back story of ‘Jacket’.

1TW-Rapture

Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture was one of the big surprises at Sony’s E3 conference this year. Coming from the creators of ‘Dear Esther’, it is a first-person adventure game set in England – Shropshire to be precise – during the apocalypse. We will have a big open world to play in and the story will be based around six different characters.

It looks to be set in 1984, if the trailer is anything to go by, with Primary and Omega events having occurred within a week of each other. In the trailer everything had a wonderfully ‘British’ sentiment, right down to the emergency broadcasts playing out on TV/Radio in the game world. Gameplay looks to be in the same vein as Esther’s exploration but with an emphasis on the player interacting with the world in ways that can shape the story.

1TW-Helldivers

In Helldivers you’ll be battling the alien enemies of mankind as part of an elite government unit. The game is a top down shooter with procedurally-generated battlefields, so you won’t come across the exact same level twice. Helldivers features a single player campaign and (up to) 4 player co-op content, so this could be a title to grab with friends and get yourself online.

Then again, considering that this is the team that created Magicka, you’ll want to be careful who you play with. Team killing, intentional or not, will be prevalent, and the game looks to be quite brutally difficult.

You can play online or locally and one of the great features of Helldivers is the ability to play cross platform, so whether you have the PS4, PS3 or Vita version you should always have someone to play with. Helldivers is cross-save as well as cross-play so if you’re making good progress on PS4 and want to transfer to your Vita to carry on during your commute to work/lunchtime then you can.

1TW-Luftrausers

In Luftrausers you control a fighter jet as you try to avoid death at the hands of enemy pilots that fill the screen, which sounds simple enough. Your jet can be upgraded with new weapons and special armour to help protect you against the onslaught. You can tweak other aspects of your jet to increase handling and speed – it seems like there will be something to suit all play styles!

Vlambeer know how to make an original and addictive game, and the twist with Luftrausers is that your health will regenerate while you aren’t firing your weapon so you’ll need to take evasive maneuvers and play defensively just when you’re at your weakest.

The game has a great art style, using red silhouettes to represent the jets and ground force, while the sky is a shade of beige. As you take out enemies point numbers show on screen, much like Borderlands, and you’ll be tasked with trying to rack up as high a score as possible.

1TW-Telltale

Telltale Games have been busy over the last 12 months, with The Wolf Among Us and The Walking Dead: Season 2 both having their first episodes land this year, and agreeing deals for games set in the worlds of HBO’s Game Of Thrones and Gearbox Software’s Borderlands.

Starting with the known quantities, the first episode of The Wolf Among Us was well received upon release and will have another four episodes during 2014. Based on the Fables comic series but set 30 years prior, it tells the story of Bigby Wolf, one of many fabled characters now living among, and disguised as, humans. It’s a point and click adventure game in essence, but with a branching story line, which has quickly become Telltale calling card.

Similarly, Telltale’s other title The Walking Dead Season 2 will play in much the same way but most of us won’t be playing this one for the gameplay, it’s all about the story. In season 2 Clementine’s story continues but now the player will now be controlling her and making tough choices in her shoes.

We know practically nothing about Game Of Thrones, and the trailer was the definition of a ‘teaser’!  However, we do know that it will be based in the universe of the TV series rather than the full on books, but they’re still deciding on which characters will feature and when it’s set.

Thankfully we have a bit more info on the Borderlands title because the trailer gave us some concrete information. Marcus returns and seems to be warning a couple against imitating the vault hunters. Might one of them be your character? Or will you character tie in more with Handsome Jack, who also made an appearance in the trailer? I like the universe and humour of Borderlands so I think this could turn out to be a good little side series while we wait for Borderlands 3.


Come back tomorrow, when Tuffcub will be tackling some of the games heading to the PS Vita in 2014.

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7 Comments

  1. When will Telltale hit the limit of indie ? Where is the cornerstone where we stop calling them an indie developer ? They are currently producing 4 games, have greatly increased the company’s size and even have a game in works about a mainstream fantasy world.

    • Agreed, I wouldn’t consider them an indie developer anymore when they are working on titles like Game of Thrones.

  2. I’ve got my eyes firmly fixed on that Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture, it sounds fantastic. Is this coming to consoles or just PC?

    • It’s only be confirmed for PS4 – they said there are no immediate plans for a PC version. So you had it the wrong way round :)

      • That is good news for me then! nice one!

  3. EG to the R for me, also watching out for Hohokum and Octodad.

    • Spot on, fella. All three look absolutely full of promise.

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