7 Games You Missed Out On...
Updated: Jan 7
By Lucky Knight
Keeping up with the big names in the gaming industry is easy. If there is a well-loved developer or studio releasing another triple-A title, you can't seem to avoid it. The name is hashtagged across social media. The ads are begging you to pre-order and special merch is mass-produced and sold for those who do.
But as much as I enjoy the hype, sometimes it is the lesser-known games that cause the greatest impact. They're created entirely by a small team. Risks are taken and fresh ideas are born. There's something so refreshing about these games that I find myself rummaging through bins and scouring the internet for those obscure releases more than anything else these days. And because I've heard so little about the following seven titles, I'm going to assume you have too. So here are seven games that you (most likely) missed out on (but shouldn't have).
1 | Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons
If you follow me over on Seven Days a Week (Website), you've heard about this game. It was a recommendation that I took a chance on but paid very little for and I haven't quite gotten over it yet.
Brothers is a short and rather simplistic game; however, that's not a bad thing. Rather than dedicating 50+ hours to a single playthrough, you can wrap this one up in just a few hours. Which also makes the impact of the story that much more riveting. Just as the name suggests, you play as two brothers who must set out on a long journey to obtain a cure for their sick father. The family has already experienced their share of grief, making the way forward clear.
Setting out, you quickly realize that the brother's movements are dedicated to each of your analogue sticks. The controls will feel unnatural at first as you try to navigate the terrain and solve puzzles. For a moment, it's as if you're splitting your brain in two. However, once you adjust to the controls, it's quite easy from there on, and I found myself admiring the ingenuity of the concept.
With the beautiful graphics, gripping story, and unique controls, Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons is a powerful experience that will leave a lasting impression on its players and make you wonder why you ever considered overlooking this title.
For anyone who is a fan of old-school titles like Alundra or the classic-style Zelda, Moonlighter offers a retro experience rarely found among today's overabundance of polygons.
Moonlighter places you in the shoes of Will, a shopkeeper by day and an adventurer by night. Exploring dungeons is the only way to acquire valuable items and unlock new areas to explore. Making a good profit from those finds using your shop is how you will be able to upgrade your gear and purchase useful items.
Originally, I wasn't too confident about this one. The whole concept of playing as a shopkeeper doesn't sound too thrilling; yet, the more I play it the more I enjoy it. Exploring the dungeons and finding new items is rewarding, and returning to the shop is a good break in the action. Furthermore, it's hard not to love the 8-bit style.
This game does pose a bit of a challenge, however. If you die in the dungeon, you will lose all of your current loot and have to start again. It can be a bit grindy at times because of that, but I don't consider this a flaw. If you love retro games, you need to check out Moonlighter.
When I came across The Sexy Brutale, I had zero idea of what to expect and chances are, you're in the dark with this title too.
You play as Lafcadio Boone, a priest stuck in a nightmarish time loop. Every day begins at noon and ends at midnight, and every day, the guests at The Sexy Brutale casino are murdered. It's up to you to solve the mystery behind each of their deaths and save them before it happens. Again.
By exploring the casino and picking up clues, you'll eventually piece together what's truly going on and the story behind the nightmare.
While this game is basically one big puzzle, I never found it overly difficult or too easy. The graphics are gorgeous and the story is intriguing. Additionally, if you're interested in physical copies, this one also comes with a manual and the game's soundtrack. The Sexy Brutale is a phenomenal experience and one that should not be ignored.
Within recent years we've seen a resurgence in Japanese games, and I'm not talking about JRPGs. Sekiro, Nioh, and Ghost of Tsushima are just a few of the games that put you behind the controls of a ninja, samurai, or shinobi. Aragami is the ninja stealth game you didn't know you needed.
You play as a dark spirit, whose history is unknown. Without your memories of your past life, all that you know is that you've been summoned by Yamiko and she needs your help in freeing her. You will have to sleuth your way among the shadows, avoiding the light, if you want to remain unseen, and for that matter, alive.
The enemies in this game wield light as a weapon which will put an end to your ethereal existence. Aragami is simple to master but never boring. The story and mystery behind it, kept me playing. Not everything is as it seems, and the further you go, the clearer this becomes. If you haven't played Aragami, now is the time.
Little Nightmares is yet another game that you've probably never played.
You play as Six, a nine-year-old girl whose entire mission is to escape. In this sinister world, you find yourself a mere pixie among giants. Sleuthing through the shadows and navigating through rooms, it's vital to remain hidden if you want to survive.
It's a unique game that plays off of childhood fears. With its haunting soundtrack and unusual art style, it's both a masterpiece and a nightmare. Play Little Nightmares and you won't regret it.
Until everyone knows of (and hopefully plays) this game, I will not stop recommending it.
Bendy and the Ink Machine pans out like an old school cartoon. You play as Henry, a former employee of the Joey Drew Studios. At the request of Joey himself, you return to the studio to see what's going on. Only, it doesn't take long to realize things are very wrong, and your life is in danger.
What should be a cutesy, playful world of cartoon characters, is actually a sinister trap of ink. Fighting back isn't always an option, leaving you with the option to either run or hide. While this isn't on the level of The Evil Within or Outlast, Bendy and the Ink Machine holds its own in the horror genre.
Originally released on Steam, this game has been remastered for consoles and has never looked better. Whether you played it a few years ago in its previous form or you've never heard of this game before in your life, now is the time to pick this one up and play it.
7 | Rime
Released in the not-so-distant year of 2017, Rime feels like a title that was quickly forgotten. Gamers rarely mention it and so many have never played it. If you're one of them, here's why that needs to change.
Rime is a straightforward title that offers a couple of hours of gameplay. At the start, a nameless boy awakens on the shore of what appears to be an abandoned island. Over the course of the game, you're never given real answers, but the mood of the game gradually shifts and it becomes increasingly clear what the message is.
The story of Rime is powerful and in the end, that is what compelled me to fall so hard for this game. The levels, challenges, and even the weather are symbolic and represent the truth behind the boy's circumstances. Rime, simply put, is an unforgettable experience. From the art style to the gameplay to the story, this is an absolute must-play.
I hope that some of these games caught your attention, and you'll give them a try. While many of these require very little time or skill to play, it is the journey that makes them so enjoyable.
Their graphics dazzled me, their stories left deep impressions and many of them have ultimately become some of my favorite games.
If you've played any of these games (or have any recommendations that fit this list), let me hear about them.
As always, happy gaming!