It’s the dawn of a new year, and quite a few indie games came out in the past month, spanning a variety of experiences. Here’s the best ones we could find.

If you thought it’s going to take a while for 2018 to warm up, you’re dead wrong. Indies not only exploded in numbers, but in sheer quality too. We’ll no doubt be hearing about some of these indie games in the end-of-the-year lists, that’s how good some of them are. January also covered a breadth of experiences, from simulating old-timey whaling to exploring alien oceans to even cyberpunk pottery.

Here’s the top indie games that came out last month.

InnerSpace (PC, Mac, Linux, PS4, Xbox One, Switch)

Developer: PolyKnight Games
Publisher: Aspyr
OpenCritic Score: 68
Steam Reviews: Mostly Positive

In the ethereal InnerSpace, you find yourself flying in inside-out planets, through skies and oceans full of the ruins of ancient civilisations. This is a world where the gravity will pull you out, not in. The game is focused on exploration, storytelling and beautiful vistas; looks like a good time if you want a calming experience.

Full Metal Furies (PC, Xbox One)

Developer: Cellar Door Games
Publisher: Cellar Door Games
OpenCritic Score: 85
Steam Reviews: Very Positive

Full Metal Furies comes from the creators of Rogue Legacy, and it is an action RPG focused heavily on ‘true co-operative’ play. Every player character in the game is equally important, and teamwork is the key to victory in this title. If you’re playing solo, the game offers a ‘Pick 2’ system that lets you swap between two characters at will, retaining the nuance of the multiplayer experience.

Nantucket (PC)

Developer: Picaresque Studio
Publisher: Fish Eagle
OpenCritic Score: 78
Steam Reviews: Mostly Positive

Nantucket is a sequel to Moby-Dick, and has you playing as a whaler during the Golden Age of American whaling. You’ll manage a crew, set sail, travel to distant ports, hunt whales a whole lot, battle pirates, and more. And of course, you’ll chase down Moby Dick (spoilers for Moby-Dick, sorry).

Sairento VR (HTC Vive, Oculus Rift)

Developer: Mixed Realms, Swag Soft Holdings
Publisher: Mixed Realms
OpenCritic Score: 78
Steam Reviews: Very Positive

In Sairento VR, you play as a cyber ninja in VR. What, you need to know more? But why? Oh well. You get to look one-hundred-percent stylish while using katanas and pistols to dispatch enemies in slow-motion. The game is primarily mission-driven, but also includes competitive and co-operative multiplayer modes.

Vesta (PC, Xbox One, Switch)

Developer: FinalBoss Games
Publisher: FinalBoss Games
OpenCritic Score: 66

Vesta has you playing as a six-year-old girl who lives in an underground labyrinth. With a robot for a companion, she explores her complex surroundings, solving puzzles, fighting robots, and figuring out the truth of her situation.

The Red Strings Club (PC, Mac, Linux)

The Red Strings Club screenshotDeveloper: Deconstructeam
Publisher: Devolver Digital
OpenCritic Score: 81
Steam Reviews: Very Positive

The Red Strings Club is a narrative adventure that involves pottery, bartending and impersonating people on the phone, all in the quest to take down a corporate conspiracy. It’s quite psychological, and reminds us of the modern classic VA-11 HALL-A.

Subnautica (PC, Mac)

Developer: Unknown Worlds Entertainment
Publisher: Unknown Worlds Entertainment
OpenCritic Score: 88
Steam Reviews: Very Positive

Subnautica has you exploring an extraterrestrial ocean with limited resources. In this underwater survival game, you will need to find food, water and material to craft items with. You’ll also come across many strange and curious lifeforms in the alien ocean—some of them harmless, and the others somewhat dangerous.

Iconoclasts (PC, Mac, Linux, PS4, PS Vita)

Developer: Joakim Sandberg
Publisher: Bifrost Entertainment, DANGEN Entertainment
OpenCritic Score: 85
Steam Reviews: Very Positive

Iconoclasts is an indie Metroidvania with a strong narrative that has you playing as the mechanic Robin. She may not have a license, but she’s committed to fixing the world that’s falling apart around her. Expect combat, puzzle, boss battles and a story with some depth.

Celeste (PC, Mac, Linux, PS4, Xbox One, Switch)

Developer: Matt Makes Games Inc.
Publisher: Matt Makes Games Inc.
OpenCritic Score: 92
Steam Reviews: Overwhelmingly Positive

Celeste is a tough-but-accessible indie platformer in which the protagonist Madeline is doing her best to climb up Celeste Mountain. It’s got just three simple moves: jumping, climbing and air-dashing, but the set-up will keep you occupied for hours. It’s also got a deeply personal story to boot.

Strikers Edge (PC, Mac, PS4)

Developer: Fun Punch Games
Publisher: Playdius, Plug In Digital
OpenCritic Score: 63
Steam Reviews: PositiveStrikers Edge is described as ‘medieval dodgeball’ or more simply, ‘dodgebrawl’. Armed with weapons, powers and your own ability to play mind games, you must compete in 1v1 or 2v2 arenas to anticipate your enemies’ moves and get ’em good. It’s mainly intended to be multiplayer, but also features a singleplayer with story.

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