Nostalgia Saturday – Retro-Inspired Games Making A Comeback

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With retro-style games making a major comeback through Indie game development, I wanted to take some time to talk about its benefits as well as simply discuss the topic on a general level. On this edition of Nostalgia Saturday I plan to do just that. So sit down, get comfortable and let’s get retro!

It’s not really news that retro-inspired games are back on the rise, this has been happening for the past few years, but within the last year or so they have skyrocketed not only in numbers but also in popularity. It’s not just that these retro-inspired games are being made more frequently, it’s that they are being made well and are therefore becoming huge hits within the gaming community. It’s not just the older folks who may be playing them to reminisce about the old days of gaming either, people of all ages and gaming backgrounds are falling in love with retro-inspired Indie games.

This is definitely a good thing, in my opinion. Not only are these games fun and well made, they prove that you don’t have to have some kind of huge, crazy budget to make worthwhile video games. Retro-style games are bringing back a lot of diversity through relatively simplistic means. A lot of gamers have been complaining that new AAA games are all the same or that they are generally bland and lack diversity among one another. Indie games in general break that particular status quo with new and innovative ideas and in regard to retro-inspired games they take it one step further with their ultra classic elements and design.

I guess the point I am trying to get out is that Indie games, including but not limited to retro-inspired Indie games, are great. These games lack AAA publishing/development constraints and aren’t trying to play to huge crowds, they are trying to appeal to you as an individual which typically makes them more unique and innovative in general. There is something out there on the Indie game market for everyone and I think that is the best part. In case you haven’t already delved into the awesome world of Indie games, namely retro-inspired Indie games since that is what this whole post is about, below is a list of some fun games that you can start with. They all range in genre and are definitely in the retro-inspired category, so dig in!

  • Starbound – Adventure, RPG (PC)
  • Rogue Legacy – Platformer (PC)
  • Guacamelee! – Platformer, Beat ’em up (PC, PSN)
  • Risk of Rain – Platformer (PC, PSN – Vita Only)
  • Spelunky – Action/Adventure (PC, XBLA, PSN)
  • Nidhogg – Fighting (PC)
  • Gunpoint – Stealth, Puzzle (PC)
  • Fez – Puzzle, Platformer (PC, PSN, XBLA)
  • La-Mulana – Action-Adventure, Platformer (PC)
  • Don’t Starve – Action/Adventure, Survival Horror, Sandbox (PC, PSN – PS4 Only)

To those of you without a PC (or at least without a PC that is capable of gaming) this list may seem daunting. Rest assured, most of these titles are either already on consoles or are planned for console releases within the year. Indie gaming is becoming a huge deal as far as console play goes, this year we will see a lot of Indie titles coming to the console side of the fence. That being said, it’s pretty much guaranteed that a good number of those games will feature that retro style we all crave.

Have any games you’d like to add to my little list? What are some of your favorite retro-inspired games and why do you enjoy them as much as you do? Be sure to share the answers to these questions as well as any other thoughts on the topic in the comment section below.

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