While Nintendo has had some bigger first-party releases this year like Animal Crossing: New Horizons and Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity, it hasn't turned its eye on indie games coming to the Switch. With the end of the year in sight, Nintendo has given us a peek at what to expect from its indie game lineup heading into 2021, including a mix of indie game favorites alongside some new reveals and surprises.
As revealed earlier in the year, Nintendo officially aired its latest (and likely final) Indie World Showcase for 2020, giving us a closer look at the indie titles making their way to Nintendo Switch in the coming months of 2021. Over the course of the 15-minute Showcase we ended up getting a glimpse of nearly 20 indie games heading to Switch (and elsewhere), and below you'll find all of the games showcased at the latest Indie World Showcase.
Spelunky and Spelunky 2
The first announcement from Nintendo at the Indie World Showcase as easily one of the most welcome, with the reveal that both Spelunky and its recently-released sequel Spelunky 2 will be coming to the Switch in summer 2021. The hit roguelike platformers from developer Derek Yu are arguably a match made in heaven to play on-the-go, so Switch owners will only have a bit longer to wait when they debut later next year.
Cat puns and combat meet adorable felines in Fisti-Fluffs, an adorable cat fighting game that was showcased during today's Indie World. Cuddly, charming, and unbearably chaotic, Fisti-Fluffs will be clawing its way to Nintendo Switch in early 2021.
Very Very Valet
In the vein of games like Moving Out and Overcooked!, the upcoming Very Very Valet seems to be next in line for potential party games to play with your friends. As the name implies, the chaotic indie game puts you in charge of a valet driver trying to bring cars back to their drivers. Hilarity ensues. As seen in the trailer, Very Very Valet will be out for Nintendo Switch in early 2021.
Thanks to its hand-drawn art and animation, Tunche from the Peruvian LEAP Game Studios stood out as one of the most distinctive indies showcased at Nintendo's presentation. The side-scrolling brawler will release for Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, and PC in March 2021, and will also feature a cameo appearance by Hat Kid from A Hat in Time.
Developed by Mechanical Head Games and published by Shovel Knight's Yacht Club Games, Cyber Shadow looks to be one of the most promising indie releases on the horizon, and we only have a few more weeks to wait for it. During the Indie World Showcase, it was revealed that the game will be coming to consoles and PC on January 26, 2021, and will also include a Switch-exclusive feature to import your favorite Shovel Knight characters using their official amiibo figures.
Fisti-Fluffs wasn't the only cat-themed game to grace the latest Indie World, as developer Whitethorn Games showcased Calico, its management sim all about running a cat cafe. The cozy cat-friendly game is out now on Nintendo Switch and was launched today during the showcase.
Alba: A Wildlife Adventure
From the studio behind Monument Valley, developer Ustwo Games shared a new look at their next project titled Alba: A Wildlife Adventure. Set in the midst of a lush tropical island, the game has players taking on the role of Alba as she tries to preserve and nurture the wildlife on her idyllic home, and will be coming to Nintendo Switch in spring 2021.
For lovers of visual novels or story-driven games (especially Disco Elysium), Gnosia is on its way to release through an English localization by Playism. Partly inspired by Werewolf, the game follows a group of explorers on a space station as they're eliminated one-by-one by the titular Gnosia, an eerie lifeform taking their appearances and taking them out. Gnosia will release for Nintendo Switch in early 2021.
Despite what its title might imply, Happy Game is meant to fill you with a bit of uneasiness and dread. Developed by Amanita Design, the puzzle platformer has players in the role of a boy experiencing a series of bizarre nightmares set to the music of the band DVA. Happy Game will be out for Nintendo Switch and PC in spring 2021.
Super Meat Boy Forever
Coming on the heels of the original's tenth anniversary, Super Meat Boy Forever has been a long time coming. The long-awaited follow-up has been in development for several years and was initially expected to arrive last year. Despite some development setbacks, we won't have too much longer to wait as it was confirmed that the meat-quel will be a console launch exclusive for Nintendo Switch with its debut on December 23, 2020.
Originally released last year as one of the first titles on Apple Arcade, the addictive puzzle game Grindstone is finally making its debut on consoles with its launch on Nintendo Switch. As revealed during the presentation, Grindstone is out today on Nintendo Switch, making for one of several shadow drops that Nintendo had in store for this latest Indie World stream.
Finally, Nintendo saved its biggest announcement for last featuring one of the biggest games of 2020 (or 2018, depending on who you ask), Among Us. After the title's explosive rise in popularity throughout this year, the hit multiplayer game has now made its console debut and is available today on Nintendo Switch for $5. Additionally, the Switch version also features cross-play with the PC and mobile versions and supports both online and local multiplayer, so don't worry about being sus.
Aside from these games, you can also check out some trailers below for a few other titles that Nintendo highlighted during the Indie World Showcase in a quick montage:
When the Past Was Around
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With Cyberpunk 2077 finally out in the world on consoles and PC, the launch of the highly-anticipated game is likely driving interest in its source material, the classic Cyberpunk tabletop RPG. Recently, publisher R. Talsorian Games introduced the latest iteration of the RPG with Cyberpunk Red, and now is expanding even further in the sci-fi tabletop universe with a new miniatures game coming next year.
R. Talsorian Games has announced that a new tabletop game set in the world of Cyberpunk Red is in the works and coming in 2021 from Monster Fight Club. Specifically, the game is called Cyberpunk Red: Combat Zone and will be a "miniatures-based skirmish game" inspired by the latest edition of the tabletop RPG.
You can take a look at the official box art for Combat Zone below:
— R. Talsorian Games. Cyberpunk RED out now! (@RTalsorianGames) December 15, 2020
According to Monster Fight Club's website, Combat Zone will put players into the role of a team of Cyberpunk characters "who are looking to make a name for themselves." Specifically, the tabletop game will revolve around "organic, free-flowing actions" with "no rounds, no turns," lending itself to something that might be a bit more streamlined compared to other miniatures-based games.
Last year, R. Talsorian Games released the Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit, which served as an introductory release for both the newest edition of the tabletop RPG and to help players dive into the Cyberpunk universe and lore. The full edition of Red released last month with a 458-page manual, though at the moment the physical edition is a bit hard to come by and currently sold out on the publisher's website; the digital edition is available to purchase now, along with the physical Jumpstart Kit.
Cyberpunk Red is available now from R. Talsorian Games, with the miniatures game Combat Zone to arrive sometime in 2021.
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Look, you and I both know that the 1995 Mortal Kombat movie is an all-time classic. To this day, it stands out as one of the best game-to-film adaptations. The only issue is the absolutely terrible CGI. To that end, Warner Bros. is finally giving the series the big-budget reboot it deserves. We've known for a while that it's coming to theaters and streaming exclusively on HBO Max. However, now they've announced that the movie will release on April 16, 2021. Give it a look.
— Mortal Kombat Movie (@MKMovie) December 14, 2020
I don't want to get too excited just yet, but as a big fan of the Mortal Kombat lore, this is shaping up to be a movie I can't wait to see. Regardless of the quality, it should be fun. Personally, I'm a big fan of the casting. Ludi Lin as Liu Kang is a perfect fit. Not only does he have a background in martial arts, but I've liked everything I've seen him in, even that Power Rangers movie. They're also bringing in Joe Taslim to be Sub-Zero. If you don't know who he is, please do yourself a favor and watch The Raid. It's phenomenal.
The rest of the cast I'm less familiar with. However, those two can easily carry the action on their own. It doesn't look like many of the other actors have serious martial arts backgrounds, but I don't think that's necessarily a problem. Either way, I can't help but think this one could be solid.
Mortal Kombat releases on April 16, 2021. While you wait, make sure to pick up Mortal Kombat 11 and see where the video game version of the story has gone over the last year. It's available now on Nintendo Switch, PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X.
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Temtem's initial reveal about a year ago followed a perfect storm of Game Freak, the Pokemon Company, and Nintendo angering Pokemon fans for a number of reasons. From overanalyzing tree textures to complaining about the exclusion of the National Pokedex in the latest entries in the series, fans were fed up. Temtem, a game that aims to emulate and capture a lot of what makes Pokemon so great comes along with a nice art style and the promise of being an MMO on top of that was announced. It garnered a decent amount of attention from alienated fans.
Temtem's greatest allure is that it offers all the gameplay elements that a core Pokemon game would have, just without the Pokemon. That's a gargantuan task for a number of reasons, not the least of which being that it's a new IP trying to capture the inherently charming and nostalgic aesthetic of Pokemon. Plus, it's trying to create a seamless MMO with entirely new creatures and a distinct battle system. For every risk and change the game takes, more succeed than fail. However, in removing some of gaming's most iconic and beloved creatures, you lose a lot of that Pokemon charm.
In standard Pokemon form, you're tasked with traveling throughout the world, battling and leveling up your party of Temtems, and becoming the best 'tamer' you can be. You have a starter, a rival, and an encyclopedic database of all the creatures you encounter. As you progress, you'll encounter multiple boss-like tamers who rely on one or two types of Temtem that you have to overcome to move on. Really, expect to find just about everything you could expect from the creature-collector template.
While the framework is largely the same, as it turns out, removing some of gaming's most beloved and iconic characters and having someone else write it serves to make the game itself less charming and enjoyable. In fact, I'd never thought twice about writing in a Pokemon game until I spent a few hours with Temtem.
There's a specifically naive, goofy sensibility to how JRPGs, especially Pokemon games, are written. Temtem does not share that same trait. While not necessarily bad, a lot of the dialogue was missing the childlike wonder and naivete that helps make Pokemon so magical. I did really appreciate the amount of agency Temtem gives you in the dialogue department, but because the writing was lackluster, it didn't really end up mattering that much. Instead, I found myself never really caring what options I chose. In fact, I found myself using the skip feature for a lot of the dialogue when I knew it'd all end in a battle anyway.
Writing aside, the game's more soft, pastel art style and understated music has such a pleasant vibe. Aside from a few specific themes and locations, most of Temtem's art and environments were incredibly relaxing. That soft feeling extends to the Temtems themselves, in fact.
As a whole, the (admittedly small) roster of Temtems, much like any generation of new Pokemon has its ups and its downs. In fact, if someone had blurry footage of this game running on a Switch and put it on the internet, I have a feeling most people would assume it was a Pokemon game.
That said, the MMO-like UI with horribly small text and no discernible options to change it sticks out like a sore thumb. Aside from that, the only thing that would instantly tip off most Pokemon fans is the battle system. The system takes the format in several really interesting directions to differentiate it from the games that inspired it. The biggest change to the battle system is that each creature has a stamina bar that each of their moves draws from. This is a big change from using PP (Power Points) for each move to indicate how many times it can be used.
To make things interesting, when the Temtem exhausts their stamina meter, they dip into their HP. To balance this out, stamina regenerates every turn. It's probably the most compelling and distinctive addition to the battle system. It encourages more proactive switching and makes passing on a turn or using a weaker move viable strategies.
The other nifty addition to the battle system starts the moment you have two or more Temtems in your party. From then on, just about every fight is a double battle, if not at least a 2-on-1 battle. Because of this, the game takes the opportunity to introduce specific moves that, when used with a Temtem of a specific type on the field, will have improved properties. While this isn't something that's totally new to the genre, Temtem uses it the most frequently. In fact, because of the nature of the battle system, I wish it had been implemented more.
That's partially because the move pool is just too small and emphasizes moves that just don't feel that weighty. Part of that is because some moves require the Tem to be in battle for a turn or two before they can actually use it. Normally, that wouldn't be a bad thing, especially since you will usually be in control of two Temtems at a time. However, the stamina system and the fact that the game encourages more frequent switching are directly at odds with any mechanics that require you to wait for a move to be available.
Of course, it's not really a monster collecting game if the battle system doesn't feature complex rock-paper-scissors type-based matchups. Temtem certainly has that on lock. While not every type is the same, and some types are totally new, most matchups work in a predictable way. That said, people coming from Pokemon might want to have a type matchup chart at the ready just in case. Some matchups, like Temtem's equivalents to fighting and normal types, don't function the same way at all. While that's not necessarily a problem, it could confuse people like me who've spent over half their lives learning Pokemon type matchups.
Unfortunately, sometimes nailing the right match-up doesn't feel as satisfying as it does in Pokemon. To make matters worse, you will encounter countless sections in the game that feature level gaps that slow progression to a grind-y halt.
Now, I know this is something that's in most Pokemon games, especially the earlier ones, but Temtem handles it really, really badly. The example that sticks out in my head the most is when I was stuck on a dojo, Temtem's gym equivalent. I had to either bash my head against the dojo leader or grind against wild Tems that were half the level of the lowest member of my party.
It took hours of slow, ungratifying grinding against under-leveled enemies to get my team up to snuff before I could eke out a win. This was made even more frustrating by the fact that most of my team was a higher level than most of this leader's team. However, because they never learned many strong, reliable moves, I found myself decently over-leveled after I won.
As a game in early access, Temtem shows a lot of really interesting, innovative departures from the Pokemon gold-standard. That said, there are also an almost equal amount of missteps that can hopefully be fixed before the game's out of early access.
In some ways, my time with Temtem brought me back to being a kid discovering Pokemon for the first time, wholly unaware of the matchups or what the creatures were. But with that comes a sense of uncertainty and confusion from some of the differences.
If you're a lapsed or disgruntled Pokemon fan or just someone who's played every Pokemon game looking for something similar, Temtem will provide you with the gameplay and design that you need to scratch that Pokemon itch. Just don't expect it to quite live up to the magical, childlike charm.
Editor's Note: TemTem is still in early access and as such, we'll be updating this review in the future as the game continues to grow.
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Originally launched in 2008, Grand Theft Auto IV was a revolution in the GTA series and prepared the foundation for its successor in the case of gameplay and world design. However, twelve years after its launch, the game might be a little bit outdated in the case of visuals for those who want to play it for the first time. Fortunately, modders can solve this problem for you.
Hayssam Keilany, one of the veteran modders who has started rolling out iCEnhancer mods for Grand Theft Auto IV since 2010, is now working on a brand new version of the update that targets to bring some quality-of-life improvements to the game, including volumetric fog, improved water effects, new tree models, multi-layered clouds, high-quality reflections, improved night shadows, and some other fascinating stuff.
The mod was announced with a new trailer showing off how the game and its world will look after applying all the improvements mentioned above. Honestly, the game looks like an 8th-gen title with the new mod, especially when you look at reflections, night shadows, and the new water effects.
iCEnhancer & RevIVe doesn't have a release date yet, but according to the trailer above, it seems like a lot of the work has been already done. However, if you can't wait for it, you can download the third version of iCEnhancer that was launched for the PC version of Grand Theft Auto IV back in 2015.
Apparently, Hayssam Keilany had another mod for GTA IV under development after iCEnhancer 3, but somehow it has been canceled in the course of development.
As you may know, Rockstar usually doesn't react friendly to modders, especially the ones who attempt to remaster or remake its old titles. It's yet to be seen how Keilany's new mod will be treated by Rockstar and if there would be any copyright-related action against him or not.
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Today's the big one folks. FIFA 21 players have been waiting for a marquee player to pop up in the SBC section for the ongoing FUT Freeze promo. EA has finally answered that call with a new Aaron Wan-Bissaka card that moves him from right back to center back. Given that he's a Premier League player, he was always going to be pricey. However, I'm not sure if he's worth it, but hey, they're your coins.
The first thing that's important to note is that EA released a repeatable Icon SBC yesterday. This caused high-rated fodder to skyrocket, making every FUT Freeze player much more expensive than they probably should be. So, while the asking price might've been more reasonable two days ago, today it's a bit stinky.
To get him into your FIFA 21 club, you'll need to shell out nearly 400,000 coins. And once you do, those coins are gone. You'd be better off getting a tradeable inform Joe Gomez. At least you can get some money back once he's behind the power curve. That said, if you absolutely have to have Wan-Bissaka in your club, give the solutions below a look for inspiration.
Again, I would steer clear of this one unless you're a Manchester United fan. There are too many great, tradeable options available. Heck, you could just use his gold card off chem. It's basically the same. I'd prefer to see a much better boost for this many coins. Unfortunately, that Icon SBC kills everything. At least now you'll make more coins selling all that fodder all your FIFA point packs when you don't get anything useable!
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We all have that one friend that thinks puns are the peak of comedy. Keep this game far away from them. Fisti-Fluffs, a paw-to-paw combat game where players duke it out as cats was one of the many titles revealed coming to the Switch during today's Nintendo Indie World showcase.
Developed by Playfellow studios and published by Rogue Games Inc., this title looks like what would happen if Gangbeasts had cats instead of human-esque fighters. The Game seems to take the physics-based approach to combat, with each fighter flailing at the other until one cat is crowned king. Cats will be able to swipe at each other and use household items to best their enemies.
Besides fighting other cats, Fisti-Fluffs seems to have some other game modes as well. Today's trailer for the game shows a group of cats tearing apart the inside of a cafe as negative dollar amounts fly across the screen. I suppose it wouldn't be a cat game unless there was a way for them to just totally destroy something.
— Nintendo of America (@NintendoAmerica) December 15, 2020
Fisti-Fluffs is due to arrive on the Switch early on in 2021.
The post Cat Combat And Bad Puns Arrive on Switch With Fisti-Fluffs by Otto Kratky appeared first on DualShockers.
Coming from publisher Yacht Club Games, the upcoming Cyber Shadow is an indie title that many have had their eye on for some time. Thanks to its spot-on visuals inspired by retro games of the past, the upcoming platformer is now gearing up for release early next year, and will also be featuring some special features for its release on Nintendo Switch.
During the latest Indie World Direct, Nintendo revealed that Cyber Shadow will officially release on January 26, 2021. In a new trailer shared during the Direct, the broadcast gave a new look at the retro-inspired ninja platformer that bears quite a bit of resemblance to classics like Ninja Gaiden, Mega Man, and Castlevania.
As seen in the latest trailer, Nintendo also revealed that the Switch version of Cyber Shadow will feature exclusive support with the Shovel Knight line of amiibo figures. Specifically, players can scan their amiibo figures from the Shovel Knight series into the game and unlock a support character that will assist players to help take down enemies, including Shovel Knight, Plague Knight, and other familiar faces from the Yacht Club title.
Having played a bit of Cyber Shadow myself earlier this year at PAX East 2020 (back when actual gaming events were a thing), I have high hopes for the game heading into its launch this winter. We also had a chance to play a bit of the game last year, where Max Roberts felt that the game was "a perfect fit for Yacht Club Games' lineup." Thankfully, we won't have too much longer of a wait with a little over a month left until its console and PC debut.
Cyber Shadow will release for PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PC on January 26, 2021.
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Playism announced on the latest Nintendo Indie World Showcase that Gnosia will be localized in English in early 2021. On Switch. Inspired from Loup-Garou or the Werewolf game, Gnosia features colorful characters on a spaceship. However, one or more of these characters is Gnosia. A life form which take the appearance of others and eliminates humanoid beings. First, each night on the spaceship, the Gnosia will erase one of the characters. Secondly, the remaining characters, the player included, will try to find the Gnosia. By voting for who's the most suspicious person. A concept everyone knows nowadays with Among Us. A cold sleep system is used on the character with the most votes. The days goes on until the Gnosia kills everyone or until it's put in cold sleep.
Moreover, once you're done with your first run, the game Gnosia loops over and over with new possibilities, characters, and scenarios. Each run will take between 5 to 15 minutes, and it's up to you to keep going and reach out to the truth.
A single run can contain multiple Gnosia characters. Moreover, the Gnosia can be the player themselves. In that case, they need to kill everyone without being found out. At some point you are also able to customize your run, picking beforehand the numbers of Gnosia, the characters, and their roles.
Why compare Gnosia to Disco Elysium?
We thoroughly explained the game systems of Gnosia in a previous story. Be sure to check it out. In particular, Gnosia is an RPG and an Adventure game (what we call Visual Novels outside Japan). When starting the game, players can customize their characters, attributing points in stats such as Charisma and Stealth. The player can earn levels to increase their stats to learn new skills usable during conversations. Some of the actions avalaible such as "lying" have a success rate depending on your stats. you can do such as lying will succeed or fail depending on your stats. Moreover, the NPCs can use Skills as well. Lastly, the player's stats and level carry over in each loop.
As such, we've been comparing Gnosia to Disco Elysium, also first released in 2019. In 2019, Disco Elysium was critically acclaimed worldwide. Meanwhile, multiple Japanese outlets praised Gnosia too.
The announcement was accompanied with a video message from Toru Kawakatsu, producer and director of Gnosia at indie developer Petit Depotto. Toru Kawakatsu explained: "Gnosia is an experience only realizable with the medium of video games." I personally couldn't agree more, and I could say the same for another recently localized Japanese game, 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim.
Gnosia English Switch Release Reveal Trailer
A mysterious lifeform has blended in among the crew of a drifting spaceship. Stop it before it claims its last victim when Gnosia infiltrates #NintendoSwitch in early 2021. #PLAYISM #IndieWorld pic.twitter.com/jJDdhLeNAz
— Nintendo UK (@NintendoUK) December 15, 2020
Gnosia was first released exclusively on PlayStation Vita in Japan on June 20, 2019. On April 30, 2020, a Switch port was released.
Toru Kawakatsu previously explained they released the game on Vita only on purpose for it to gain a reputation. This is what allowed it to be noticed by Nintendo and be featured in the Japanese version of the March 26, 2020 Nintendo Direct Mini. Toru Kawakatsu later told Bloomberg journalist Takashi Mochizuki that Gnosia would be localized if the demand was strong enough. Gnosia is an exceptional game we've been covering a lot on DualShockers, and it's incredible to see it get a localization. Personally speaking, I can't wait to try the game out in English.
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Today's Nintendo Indie World showcase included some neat smaller titles and one huge one. That standout was Among Us, the 2018 game of whodunit that has skyrocketed to popularity. Although limited to PC and mobile phones, the game will soon have a new home. Among Us is set to arrive on the Nintendo Switch later today.
The game's shadow drop fits in with Nintendo's recent trend of announcing or revealing new titles and putting them up for sale almost immediately. An Eshop page has already been made for the game, and don't worry, it still costs only $5.
Playing Among Us on the Switch will come with its own drawbacks though. Obviously, the game won't have any performance problems on Nintendo's mobile console, but being a social game, it's important for players to be able to communicate easily. The Switch doesn't exactly facilitate that. Nintendo doesn't have voice chat on the Switch and instead pushes the Switch app, which comes with voice chat rooms. At that point though, you're better off just using Discord's mobile app. Either way, you won't be able to communicate with your friends outside of typing in Among Us with the Switch's hardware.
— Nintendo of America (@NintendoAmerica) December 15, 2020
This marks the second time Among Us has been in the news recently. The game also had a standout performance at The Game Awards. Besides winning two awards for best multiplayer game and best mobile game, a new map for Among Us was also revealed. The map, titled 'The Airship,' will arrive in 2021 as part of a free update. Players will find new tasks, choices of what room to start in, and more new features when this map debuts. Among Us is also set to arrive on the Xbox Game Pass for PC on December 17.