The Best PS4 Indie Games For 2023
A lot of the most interesting and exciting things going on in the gaming industry tend to happen in independent circles. Progressive game concepts tend to be the premise of smaller studios with less to lose; while bigger studios spin their wheels in pursuit of proven strategies, indie studios are often trailblazers (not always, but more frequently).
As you can probably imagine, 2023 has already given us its fair share of exciting indie games, and there are more to come besides. Here are the best PS4 indie games to look forward to in 2023!
Tchia (March 21st)
The influence of Nintendo’s excellent The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is starting to be felt around the gaming industry, and Tchia is just one of the games taking Nintendo’s lessons to heart. It’s a relaxing adventure in which you glide around a massive archipelago, meeting its inhabitants and engaging with the physics engine in order to solve puzzles and progress. If you thought Breath of the Wild was just a little too dangerous and you’d rather just have existed in its world for a while, Tchia is for you.
Meet Your Maker (April 4th)
Imagine Super Mario Maker, but with Mad Max aesthetics. That’s the basic idea behind Meet Your Maker, in which players construct post-apocalyptic deathtrap fortresses and then challenge other players to complete them. This game will have a large focus on player-generated content, which inevitably means that before long, players will have constructed some truly incredible creations. Keep an eye on this one if you thought Super Mario Maker could have used more whirling sawblade death.
Goodbye Volcano High (June 15th)
In Goodbye Volcano High, you play as Fang, a young 18-year-old dinosaur who plays in a band. Fang’s world is turned upside-down, and suddenly their band going viral isn’t the only thing they’re worried about. This animal narrative adventure promises rhythm-action minigames, lots of characters to meet, and a twisting story to experience, all set against the backdrop of a dinosaur-filled high school. Keep this on your radar if you like slower-paced and more emotionally involving indie games.
Sea of Stars (August 29th)
Developed by The Messenger studio Sabotage and self-professedly inspired by classics like Chrono Trigger and Secret of Mana, Sea of Stars is a true throwback JRPG-style adventure that should appeal to anyone who’s looking for an old-school fix. Its turn-based combat is markedly reminiscent of Chrono Trigger’s, and its beautiful pixel art should give you plenty of lovely scenery to stare at while you enjoy its deep and epic storyline. Here’s hoping this one is every bit as good as its inspirations!
Fall of Porcupine (TBA)
Night in the Woods fans should get a kick out of this animal adventure. You play as a doctor who must balance a hectic work schedule with your daily life after you move to the tiny town of Porcupine. As with Night in the Woods, however, dark secrets loom in Porcupine’s shadows, and it’s up to you to discover them while you diagnose and treat your patients and try to navigate the occasionally prickly (pun very much intended) inhabitants of this little town. A prologue demo is available to try out now.
Afterlove EP (TBA)
If you like The Artful Escape, then Afterlove EP should be right up your alley. This vibrant musical adventure takes place in the Indonesian capital of Jakarta and revolves around Rama, a musician whose girlfriend, Cinta, has sadly died. Rama must navigate life without her anew, although there’s one thing stopping him from doing so: he’s hearing Cinta’s voice in his head. This one promises to be a weepie, so make sure you bring adequate tissue or handkerchief supplies.
Berserk Boy (TBA)
Sadly, at time of writing, the actual status of Berserk Boy is up in the air. The creators appear to be having some problems with accessing their game’s Steam page, although they have promised that their 2D platformer will be released for PC sometime this year. We can only hope that a PS4 release date is also forthcoming for the game, as it looks like a retro-inspired Mega Man-style blast from the past. If you like harder games and more challenging experiences, keep your eye on Berserk Boy.
Thirsty Suitors (TBA)
Annapurna Interactive’s Thirsty Suitors promises a cross between “turn-based battles, skateboarding, and cooking”. If it sounds like a rather incongruous blend, the gameplay trailers we’ve seen so far makes it look like the developers are finding a way to make these disparate gameplay styles work well together. You are Jala, who must reconcile with her ex-partners and confront the mistakes she’s made over the course of her life. If you like Scott Pilgrim, this game looks like it’s offering a similar vibe.
Hollow Knight: Silksong (TBA)
We figure that maybe if we list Hollow Knight: Silksong here, some part of the universe will rearrange or reconstitute itself and the game will magically appear. We’ve been waiting long enough for this wonderful-looking sequel to the 2017 smash hit Metroidvania Hollow Knight, and what we’ve seen of it (which is admittedly little) tells us that this one’s going to be every bit as magical. Of course, we fully understand Team Cherry taking its time over this delightful-looking game, but please – we’ve waited enough for an announcement!
These are just some of the excellent-looking indie games that are headed towards the PS4 in 2023. Don’t count Sony’s last-gen console out just yet! We couldn’t list everything here, so suffice it to say that the indie landscape is looking very healthy indeed this year.