Nintendo Indie World Showcase Recap
The morning of August 19, 2019 Nintendo held a live video event they called the “Indie World Showcase” that covered a large offering of indie games and their release windows. There were some expected announcements, some surprises, and a whole lot of titles. In this article we’ll go over everything we think was most important to take away from this Nintendo announcement video. We won’t be covering every title as there were almost 30 titles announced, but we’ll talk about the bigger releases and themes throughout.
Where Did “Nindies” Go?
In the previous years of the Switch’s indie announcements, Nintendo seemed to have taken a particular liking to their coined “Nindies” name and used it all over the place when branding and showing off indie titles. While it’s not clear why Nintendo made the move away from their Nindies showcase it’s worth mentioning that the “Indie World” might be something that pops up again in the future. On their press page Nintendo themselves calls the announcement a “new-look presentation” so it’s possible that we will see this style again with future indie announcements.
Our Top 3 Releases
For the sake of time, in this article we’ll just go into the top three titles announced that we’re excited to see on the Switch. Keep in mind that with almost 30 titles announced there is a lot more information about indie games in general on the Switch but we’ll get into that later in the recap.
Risk of Rain 2
Releases Summer 2019
The first game we want to mention is Risk of Rain 2. The first Risk of Rain was released on the Switch back in September 2018, and with August coming to a close, it looks like we’ll see a similar release date for the sequel. The first game was a retro-looking platformer with the same concept as Risk of Rain 2: survive a wild planet for as long as you can before a permanent death. The game was widely popular and well received on Switch, and the second title in the series takes the gameplay concept to a whole new level. In Risk of Rain 2 you can play solo or with up to 4 players online to fight through herds of wild beasts. The game is based around a permanent death system so every run the goal is to unlock as much loot as possible to continue in the game until you can escape the hostile planet. The way the game combats the repetitive nature of the permanent death mechanic is by making the stages procedurally generated, meaning that no matter how many times you die you’ll never have the same run twice. Risk of Rain 2 was released first on PC in March of this year and quickly afterward there was talk from fans that a Switch port was wanted. While the exact release date hasn’t been announced yet, Summer is coming to a close and we can’t wait to get our hands on this incredible title on the Switch.
Releases Winter 2019
Röki is the debut game of the new developer Polygon Treehouse. The game has been showed off since 2017 and has received acclaim for its incredible art style. While the other two games on this list have been released previously and are just now coming to the Switch, Röki is releasing for its first time on the console. From what we can tell of the game so far, it looks like an exciting adventure-story game that takes you around a frozen world meeting giant creatures. It looks like there will be one main character in the game, a young girl, with two other supporting characters. Polygon Treehouse describes the game as one of “adventure, courage, and folklore” and mentions that the theme is “finding monsters that shouldn’t exist, but do.” The game looks vaguely reminiscent of Rime, but likely plays very different, and clearly has a very different narrative. While we don’t know too much about this game, the short gameplay clips that have been shown lead us to believe that this will be a huge success on the Switch and we can’t wait to play it this winter.
Releases Aug 19, 2019
As another port on the Switch, SUPERHOT doesn’t need any introduction as it has become extremely popular on console, PC, and especially VR. While it was originally released back in 2016, this game has aged extremely well and we’re so excited it’s being released on the Switch. The concept of a time-bending first person shooter is executed extremely well in this game. The mechanics of trying to time every gunshot and sword strike perfectly never get old and with an underlying story that seems to draw the player into the game’s world there’s no reason not to love SUPERHOT. While I personally prefer to play this game in VR, picking up a few casual levels on controller is an amazing experience too. This game will almost certainly play just as it would on the Xbox or PC with a controller and will be a blast to take around on the Switch’s handheld mode. We really are so happy that the SUPERHOT Team decided to bring their game over to the Switch and we can’t wait to start playing. The game is being released on August 19 and is only being sold digitally, for $24.99.
A Pattern in Nintendo Indies
While there were definitely some incredible releases announced in the Indie World Showcase, both ones we mentioned and some we didn’t, there was also a general theme through most of the lesser-known titles. There seemed to be a tremendous amount of roguelike adventure games with the fairly typical set of bad guys to fight and stages to unlock. While there were some incredible stand-out titles that were announced it seems unfortunate that there was also such a wave of games that appeared so similar at their core. While the roguelike genre definitely isn’t for everyone, there are some incredible titles in that world. I personally felt that if Nintendo had perhaps just stuck to the main releases in this announcement video and perhaps had a separate video for the lesser known titles they could have been given more individual attention. While this would have been ideal, however, it’s likely that anyone looking for these niche adventure games is already watching their developers and doesn’t need announcement videos to become aware of their favorite titles being released.
With this large amount of releases being announced by Nintendo, then, there are definitely favorites that everyone will personally have but there were also definitely some big names that I’m sure a large group of people will be excited about. Some popular titles that we didn’t mention that are coming to Switch are the Hotline Miami Collection, Ori and the Blind Forest, and Eastward. There was a lot of great news in this announcement from Nintendo and we can’t wait to see what the future holds for a console that’s so indie-minded. It definitely seems that if the Indie World is any hint at the future for the Switch’s games lineup there will be a steady stream of great titles for the foreseeable future.
Do you agree with our top 3 releases from the Indie World Showcase? Maybe you’re still holding out for a game to be announced on the Switch? Tell us what games you’re most excited for in the comments below!