23 Upcoming Indie Games of 2023 for Nintendo Switch, PS4, PS5, Xbox, PC
There are a lot of big, flashy AAA video games coming out in 2023, made by big studios with hundreds of developers. But smaller, independent studios continue to lead the way in innovation with story, mechanics and gameplay. This list is a collection of 23 exciting indie games, across all genres, expected to be released in 2023.
A few of these games were included in the 2022 roundup, but were delayed a year to get things right without pushing developers past their limits. Like 2021, in 2022, developers reckoned with how they work. Workers at independent game studios, along with QA workers at major studios, led the way in the industry’s unionization movement – a way to ensure less crunch and safer, healthier and happier workers.
These are the 23 most anticipated indie titles coming in 2023, but we’d love to hear in the comments about the indie games you’re most eager to play.
From the developer Visai Games, Friend is described as a “narrative cooking game” set in 1980s Canada. Centering on an Indian mother, it tasks players with cooking and recalling lost recipes. It’s a story of “family, love, loss and more,” the developer wrote on Steam. Beyond cooking, Friendhas an incredible art style and a complex story with branching conversations and separate storylines.
Friend expected on Nintendo Switch and Windows PC spring 2023.
Falcon age developer Outerloop Games debuted Thirsty suitors during the Game Awards 2021. The trailer showed cooking, skateboarding, dating and “RPG turn-based combat” which was apparently part of the dating aspect of the game. The story centers on a woman named Jala who has returned to her small, gossipy hometown. Family, friends and, of course, exes will play a big part in the proceedings.
Thirsty suitors expected on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Windows PC, Xbox Oneand Xbox Series X sometime in 2023.
Songs of Glimmerwick
From East shadow developer Eastshade Studios, Songs of Glimmerwick mixes music and magic in a role-playing game set in a witch academy — music is magic, and players must learn different songs to cast spells. There is also a magical garden, potions and a mysterious world to explore. It’s not the only magical school-themed game coming out next year, but it does seem to have a unique fantasy world.
Songs of Glimmerwick expected on Windows PC sometime in 2023.
If I only had one word to describe it Dordogne, I would go with “fantastic”. The game has a wonderful watercolor style that immediately drew me to it. The narrative adventure game will make the player engage in “childhood memories”, according to the Steam page. It’s set in the present and the past, and both of these worlds look equally gorgeous.
Dordogne expected on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Windows PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X sometime in 2023.
Spirit Swap: Lofi Beats to Match-3 Two
Soft not weak Spirit Swap: Lofi Beats to Match-3 Two is a rhythm match-three game with a killer soundtrack and a host of witches and demons – some of whom you can hang out with, get to know and maybe even date? All of this takes place across five different match-three modes.
Spirit Swap: Lofi Beats to Match-3 Two expected on Windows PC sometime in 2023.
Frank and Drake
Frank and Drake said to be a variant of classical novels which Frankenstein and Draculaset in a turn-based world and focused on two housemates with opposing schedules.
Frank and Drake will be available at MacNintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Windows PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X in February.
The Little Bear Chef
Last year we played as a bear who ran a bed and breakfast. This year, from developer Banana Box, we’re excited to play as a cooking bear. The game is called The Little Bear Chef, and, as the name suggests, it’s about a tiny little bear who cooks in an ordinary human-sized kitchen. We don’t know much more about the game yet, but based on the premise alone, we’re eager to see more.
The Little Bear Chef will be available on Nintendo Switch.
Super Space Club
Graham Reid’s Super Space Club is a colorful, lo-fi space combat game – something like Atari’s Asteroids if it was an open game.
Super Space Club expected on Windows PC, Xbox Oneand Xbox Series X sometime in 2023.
She Dreaming Elsewhere
She dreams elsewhere, as you may have guessed, takes place in a dream. Described as an adventure RPG, this indie game has a surreal feel – the perfect setting for a bad dream. The music, composed by Mimi Page, sounds perfect.
She dreams elsewhere expected on Mac, Nintendo Switch, Windows PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X sometime in 2023. It will also be available on Xbox Game Pass.
Terra Zero is a strategy game from the developer Free Lives where the goal is not to command and conquer. Instead, the player must restore procedurally generated wastelands and bring life back to the world.
Terra Zero expected on Windows PC sometime in 2023. A demo is available now on Steam.
Pixel nesias Afterlove EP, published by Fellow Traveller, is a dating sim, a rhythm game, and a narrative adventure. All this takes place in Indonesia’s capital, Jakarta, with a story of loss and love.
Afterlove EP will be available on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 and Windows PC.
Hollow body is a survival horror game from developer Headware Games, inspired by horror from the early 2000s. Here’s the premise: You’re a character named Mica, living in a futuristic world of decay where you’re “an unlicensed shipper working for a notorious ring of black market freelancers.” You get stranded in the “exclusion zone” with limited resources and you have to get out of the sealed, horrible world.
Hollow body will be available on Windows PC.
Troubleshooting will look familiar to anyone who has used an early Windows PC. Developer Jam Rascals uses the internal world of a computer to create gameplay centered around fixing Wi-Fi and hunting viruses, among many more activities. Naturally, you’re a JPEG, and it’s a first-person shooter with puzzles and stacking games involving odd objects, like hot dogs. It looks chaotic and good.
Troubleshooting will be available on Windows PC in “springish” 2023.
Bomb Hurry Cyberfunk
Jet Set Radio homage Bomb Rush Cyberfunk was originally scheduled to be released in 2022, but it was delayed until the summer of 2023. Developer Team Reptile focuses on high-intensity BMX bike, skateboarding and inline skating gameplay that will be set to an incredible soundtrack – including works from Jet Set Radio and Jet Set Radio Future composer Hideki Naganuma.
Bomb Rush Cyberfunk will be available on Nintendo Switch and Windows PC in summer 2023.
Season: A letter to the future
Season: A letter to the future contains the story of a young person who leaves home for the first time “before a disaster washes everything away”. Season is a road trip game, but on a bicycle — and as with all road trips, it is important to document everything in recordings, videos and photos.
Season: A letter to the future will be available on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5 and Windows PC on January 31.
Superfuse looks like Blizzard’s Diablo series, at least when it comes to genre – it’s an action RPG with a lot of top-down slashing. But the art style looks and feels like a cartoon. Players will take on a “vast conspiracy that endangers all of humanity.”
Superfuse will be available in Early Access on Windows PC on January 31st.
Deadeye Deepfake Simulacrum
If Deadeye Deepfake SimulacrumThe lo-fi beats haven’t already drawn you in, perhaps the game will: “Empower the ultimate cybernetic corporate agent. Master deadly gunplay, time manipulation and supernatural abilities. Hack computers, people, even the individual bullets flying at you. Confront the future, and die trying,” developer nodayshalleraseyou wrote on Steam.
Deadeye Deepfake Simulacrum is currently in Early Access on Windows PC.
Gestalt: Steam & Cinder
Gestalt: Steam & Cinderits gorgeous, pixelated world is second to none – the steampunk setting is astonishingly detailed and full of life. The 2D platforming and combat will be just as important as the “twist-laden narrative” set in the Steam City of Canaan, a world filled with “dangerous truths.”
Gestalt: Steam & Cinder will be available on Nintendo Switch and Windows PC.
Elation for Wonder Box 6000
Claymation first person game Elation for Wonder Box 6000, from developer Digital Tchotchkes, looks like a horror game, but it’s actually about nostalgia (with a whole bunch of horror elements). In the game, you play as a person who is looking for a favorite childhood game that no one else remembers. Look, we’ve all been there.
Elation for Wonder Box 6000 expected on Windows PC sometime in 2023.
Rusty Moss described by the developer as a “bullet-helly” Metroidvania, traversing involves swinging around with a grappling hook that’s also your robot buddy. Like any good Metroidvania, exploration is a big element of the game – and the travel mechanic looks exciting too.
Rusty Moss expected on Windows PC in early 2023.
Red Candle Games is known for its horror games Devotion and Imprisonmentbut Nine suns seems to be going in a completely different direction. Nine suns is a 2D platformer with Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice– silent battle. Not only does it look complex and challenging, Nine Sols too looks gorgeous with its detailed, hand-drawn illustration style.
Nine suns expected on Windows PC and other platforms sometime in 2023.
Stylish and unique platform Shim means controlling a little soul that jumps from shadow to shadow. The platform is part of a world-sized puzzle where players guide a small frog-like shadow back to its human counterpart. It is expected until 2023 on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5 and Windows PC.
Shim expected on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5 and Windows PC sometime in 2023.
Tchai, from the developer awaceb, is inspired by New Caledonia, a small island where the developers come from. The main mechanic is “soul hopping”, where the player will be able to transform into different things in the environment – both animals and objects – while exploring the beautiful world. In addition, there is a ukulele that is fully playable!
Tchai expected on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5 and Windows PC in early 2023.