Magi did a great post recently about some indie games that are expected to release sometime this year that he’s most looking forward to, and it made me realize that even though about half of my Steam wishlist is pre-release games, I hardly ever talk about things that aren’t out yet. So, since I think imitation is still the sincerest form of flattery, I decided to highlight a few titles I’m waiting oh-so-impatiently for.
anticipated release: early 2022
When the game is a farming sim / community builder in space, it’s not going to be a hard sell for me. In fact, I’ve been looking around for the next great farming sim to sink a few hundred hours into, and have even backed a few on Kickstarter. Obviously, being in outer space is going to set One Lonely Outpost apart a little bit, but I also really like the idea that you’re not entering into an already existing community, but building one from scratch. You also have the choice to focus on traditional style farming, or go high tech with gene-splicing and synthetic animals. Did I mention that it’s being designed to be played in co-op?
There haven’t been too many developer updates on Steam, but their Twitter feed is still active, and there is a Discord for the game. Last I heard, they’re expecting beta access for backers near the end of the first quarter, with an early access release likely sometime this summer.
anticipated release: second quarter 2022
This is one I’ve already committed to, via backing it on Kickstarter. Fata Deum feels like it’s heavily influenced by Black & White, with a lot of indirect manipulation and freedom to be a benevolent god or a wrathful one. There will also be differences in gameplay relative to the day / night cycle, which is an interesting twist that I’m hoping works well.
I feel like I’ve been playing video games for an eternity, and there have been so few really good god-style games, so I’m pinning a lot of hope on this one.
anticipated release: March 2022
Sometimes, you just want to be an agent of chaos. Sometimes, you just want to be a cat and do cat things. Grand Theft Gato: Vice Kitty is shaping up to be the kind of game that lets you do a little of both. Sure, it’s an absolutely ridiculous parody game, but I can see myself losing hours upon hours to it.
anticipated release: July 2022
An absolutely adorable concept, with an ecological-minded twist. World Turtles is a city builder from a solo dev that looks like it’ll be an absolute delight to play. Everything I’ve seen so far leads me to believe that this won’t be a combat focused game, rather a game where you provide for the people and care for the environment. This one is probably going to have an extended early access period, but I plan on buying in early and playing along as it develops.
anticipated release: June 2022
A little bit of creature collecting, a little bit of match-3 puzzling, and a really interesting retro board game aesthetic catapulted Beasties: Monster Training Puzzle RPG near the top of my wish list. The beta is already available on itch.io for less than $5 and buying in early will get you a Steam key when it comes out there later on this year. I really enjoyed the demo when I played it, and am looking forward to seeing the game evolve through beta and early access.
anticipated release: unknown
This is the first of my two games that I think we probably won’t actually see in 2022, but wouldn’t it be wonderful? I don’t know that there’s any other way to describe Paralives than to say it’s an indie version of The Sims. Now, I’ve dropped a lot of hours into multiple incarnations of The Sims over the years, and having finally jumped off that runaway train, I cannot wait to see what a smaller company can do with a modern day life simulation. It’s obviously a huge undertaking for a small company, and it may still be years away, but until it does release, it’ll probably be on my most anticipated list every year.
anticipated release: unknown
Again, I don’t actually expect to be able to play Palia in 2022, as it’s only currently in pre-alpha, and I cannot even imagine everything that goes into making a fully functional MMO. That said, I have signed up to be an early tester, so while I don’t expect we’ll see anything approaching a full release, I may still get a peek at it before the year is out.
There has been a hole in my gaming life for a chill, cooperative MMO since Glitch went dark, and I have yet to see any part of Palia that doesn’t feel specifically tailored to my aesthetic. Sure, MMOs as a whole might be declining, but cozy games seem to still be trending upward, so I’m hoping that Singularity Six can weave all the threads into a beautiful gaming tapestry.