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Top 5 indie games for March 2020

March 2020 is a big month for gaming with some big names such as Doom Eternal and Half-Life: Alyx plundering our wallets. While we are super excited about these games, this article will focus on the top 5 indie games for march 2020. In between all the heavy-hitting AAA releases, March has some fantastic indie titles that are worth your time. The indie gaming market has visibly matured over the last two decades. This is thanks to platforms such as Steam and game development tools such as Unity, Unreal and Blender. These tools and platforms give small developers the opportunity to create, publish and sell games that are not bound by the profit margins and bureaucracy of larger studios. This results in games with some truly innovative and engaging mechanics and gameplay. The following five games have us excited about what they bring to our gaming tables.

Number 1: Curse of the Dead Gods

Top 5 indie games
Curses, traps and treasure. Sound fantastic! [Image: Passtech Games]

Luckily I won’t have to wait long to play the Curse of the Dead Gods as it launches with Steam Early Access on the 3rd of March. This is the indie game that excites me the most from those that launch this month.

With an art style reminiscent of Darkest Dungeon’s, I am already sold. Curse of the Dead Gods is a dungeon-crawling rogue-lite with an ominous and dangerous atmosphere. The game is set within the Lost Temple, a place that you sought for its riches and other more sinister treasures. Now you are cursed to explore its depths and die repeatedly to the many dangers inhabiting its god-forsaken halls.

There are a good deal of indie rogue-lite’s out there and some of the best ones include Dead Cells and Darkest Dungeon. Curse of the Dead Gods looks to be real competition for these games with its fantastic looking combat and interesting setting. Developer Passtech Games emphasizes the fact that players can use the environment to help them survive. This is primarily achieved by using the various traps in the temple to damage enemies and even kill them. You can shove enemies into spike traps, lure them into vicious flame traps and use many other nefarious methods of getting rid of them.

For those who want more of a challenge, Curse of the Dead Gods features skill-based combat. This is hardly unique in this genre, but based on the gameplay trailer it looks like Curse of the Dead Gods has taken skill-based combat to the next level. Blocking is an integral part of successful combat and will be a tough skill to master. If you manage to master blocking, you will be a force to reckon with as each block is followed up with a powerful counter. Apart from the blocking mechanic, the game features a wide arsenal of weapons. Each of these weapons has different attack patterns, ranges and ideal situations of use and getting acquainted with each of them is pivotal to survival.

Passtech Games’ Curse of the Dead Gods enter Early Access on the 3rd of March, so be sure to check it out!

Number 2: Ori and the Will of the Wisp

Ori and the Will of the Wisps Spider
So beautiful but also so creepy. [Image: Moon Studios]

Our second entry on the list is controversial, as perhaps the second Ori game is not strictly speaking an indie game anymore. Ori and the Will of the Wisps will be released on the 11th of March and is published by Microsoft. Although Microsoft is the publisher of the game, the core gameplay and the world of Ori is still rooted in its indie origins.

If you are subscribed to Xbox Games Pass for PC, it will delight you to hear that Ori and the Will of the Wisps will release through this service. This means you can play the game at launch with no additional cost!

Ori and the Blind Forest enchanted audiences with its beautiful world, satisfying gameplay and brutal difficulty. By the looks of it, Ori and the Will of the Wisps will offer players more of the same. While the first game had fantastic graphics, Will of the Wisps is on another level regarding the visuals. The graphics look out of this world and the various creatures are superbly created to make a statement in the game world.

I will definitely jump into the game on launch and I hope I’ll see you there.

Number 3: Yes, Your Grace

Top 5 indie games
If you always wanted to manage a kingdom, here is your chance. [Image: Brave at Night]

My brain has been primed and my subconscious lights up with delight at the slightest mention of “your grace”. This directly results from the bombardment by Game of Thrones since 2011 when season 1 aired. Because of the grooming I received from Game of Thrones, the title “Yes, Your Grace” immediately had my attention.

Yes, Your Grace is both a simulation game, and an RPG set in a fictional version of the middle and dark ages where you are the ruler of a medieval kingdom. Your job as ruler is to:

  • Listen to petitioners and lend your support to those you find worthy;
  • Aid your own family with their personal lives and even decide their fates;
  • Hire a variety of agents to help your efforts;
  • Prepare for battle and make alliances by playing a political game with other lords and kings; and
  • Follow the stories of the different characters that visit your halls.

I doubt anyone needs more information than this, so go ahead and toss a coin to your indie dev on the 6th of March!

Number 4: Iron Danger

Iron Danger Gameplay
Iron is less dangerous when you can turn back time. [Image: Action Squad Studios]

Do you hate dying in games? Do you hate it when a slight misstep ended an otherwise promising run? Do you hate it when you blame the game when your death was obviously your own fault? Then look no further! Iron Danger is an upcoming indie RPG that allows you to cheat all the above mentioned complaints.

The game is built around a unique time manipulation mechanic. Whenever something bad happens, you can turn back time and try your best to avoid whatever caused the event. Took an arrow in the back? Turn back time and strafe to side to avoid it. Took too long to get out of the radius of a grenade explosion? Turn back time and roll to safety. You get the point, the game builds cheating into the core gameplay and I am all for it.

Tactical combat games are generally extremely punishing and forces you to either lose your squad or replay dozens of rounds to make a better choice. With this mechanic you can still experience the high intensity of the genre while having a second chance if you mess up. I think Action Squad Studios can potentially deliver a fantastic new addition to the tactical combat genre, and I am excited to play their game.

The game hits Steam on the 25th of March and promises to be an epic experience.

Number 5: Dead Age 2

Top 5 indie games
Please release in March. [Image: Silent Dreams]

For our last entry on the list, we speculate a bit. There is no confirmation that Dead Age 2 will release in March, but there is a slight possibility. As it will be released with Steam Early Access, I think there is a good chance we might see it.

Dead Age 2 is another rogue-lite entry on the list, but this one has a zombie and post-apocalyptic flavour to it. You are tasked to help a colony of survivors navigate a harsh new zombie-infested world. Strategic turn-based battles are the main activity you will perform, but Dead Age 2 adds 3D base-management to the mix. It sounds like something along the lines of a turn-based State of Decay, which doesn’t sound bad at all.

I absolutely loved Dead Age, and the turn-based battles were difficult but not unfair. This resulted in satisfying combat with valuable rewards and loot from the dead zombies and wildlife. Slaying stuff should obviously look good, but the graphics were not the strong-point of the game. While the graphics weren’t the best, it had a strange charm to it and didn’t detract from the gameplay.

All said, Dead Age 2 looks like an interesting game with good mechanics and satisfying gameplay. We will keep an eye on the release date and will update this article as soon as they announce it.

Let the games begin

This is our list of the top 5 indie games for March 2020, and hopefully you discovered something new you can play during March. Quite a few of these games are hitting Steam early during March, so go ahead and play some of them while you wait for Doom and Half-Life Alyx.