The best indie games in December don’t even have anything to do with presents, jolly men in red suits, or awkward dinners with family members you’d rather not see. Instead, they involve epic battles, complex stories, and building up a town or two. New games can sometimes chill out a bit at the end of the year, but that doesn’t seem to be the case with 2023.
Because there are so many new games in December on the indie persuasion, we’ve tried to pick out the ones that we think have the highest chance of being incredible. Some of these are in a beloved series, some are from awesome developers, and some just look really cool. So, let’s get stuck in.
SteamWorld Build – 1
SteamWorld has to be one of the most interesting lines of games going. Nearly every game since the original has been in a completely different genre, but all in the same universe. The result is a series that doesn’t even really feel like a series. SteamWorld Build takes the robotic western series into the fantasy town-building genre, and will allow you to try and manage your people’s needs, constantly try and awesome long-lost technology by digging, and defend your mine from pesky critters.
Arizona Sunshine 2 is less about the warm weather and a lot more about killing a lot of zombies in VR. While you can expect more weapons, improved physics, and better graphics than in the first game, the biggest new addition is that there’s a dog now. Expect violence, chaos, lots of zombies and a chance for a lot of fun in co-op as well.
The Day Before – 7
MMOs are generally more fantasy than anything else, but not here. The Day Before is an MMO that puts you into a post-apocalypse open world based on the US East Coast. That’s basically code for: expect zombies, but also sports cars. It’s a really interesting idea that we’re keen to see in action properly when it releases.
If you’re itching for a game that’s like Baldur’s Gate 3, but you’re more into Warhammer 40,000 than any other genre of media, then let us introduce you to Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader. Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader is a CRPG where you start on a huge voidship travelling between different systems. You then get to guide your crew through battles and decisions and decide where your loyalties lie. It comes from the studio that made the most recent Pathfinder games too, so it’s got a good pedigree.
Pioneers of Pagonia – 13
Pioneers of Pagonia lets you try to unite various tribes under your (hopefully) benign rule with loads of different buildings to create, and over 70 different goods to create and trade with. You have to fight off different enemies as you do so, and you can play it forever if you want to, thanks to procedurally generated maps.
Custom Mech Wars – 14
Custom Mech Wars is either going to be absolutely absurd and wonderful, or just the first one. From the company that published a lot of the recent Earth Defense Force games, which are stellar, and we won’t hear otherwise, this mech game lets you spend a probably unhealthy amount of time building your own mech suits as you like with loads of different weapons, parts, and paint jobs, and then go out on missions to use them. It’s got co-op for the story mission, and apparently PvP too.