Indie Games Reviews 41 – 02/25/2024

Last Seen Online by qwook – https://

This effective retro-OS puzzle game perfectly invoked the specific dread of Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s brand of horror. The naivete of teenage angst doesn’t prevent eternal cyberlamentations.

Perfect World by phasein –

Another brilliant title by phasein, this time tackling capitalism and the Anthropocene. It’s an excellent and satisfying platformer with beautiful mutant floras available for aggressive extraction and a unique sense of style. Strongly recommended.

Meatverse by vaporwario –

Keeping with the capitalistic theme, this time, an office simulator where the office is literally made of humans. The absurdity is on point, and the conclusion is joyfully cathartic.

Replay by Hengikken –

A game within a game is especially efficient in horror, which may explain why many titles use the mechanic. Replay is an excellent example of this state of affairs, keeping the narrative obtuse enough to keep you on your toes well after the final jump scare.

Android Amicicide by Incandescent Light –

First-person interactive fiction of corruption within corruption. Sadness will prevail, even within artificial life.

Fuel37 and Mausoleum by PuKo –

With these two new titles, I am now a certified fan of PuKo’s approach to game design. Fuel37 and Mausoleum are as short as they are uncanny, perfect to escape your mind. They are not complex games with intrinsic mechanics, but they fully exploit spatial design and low-key narrative to generate unpredictable variations of the “click everything to progress horror” formula. 

Neural Parasite by bush –

Exciting experience in toying with gameplay. It’s a classic lo-poly FPS horror through and through, but the unique control scheme makes you revisit classic tropes through a new haptic perspective, generating new affects. The experience makes me believe there’s much to explore regarding gameplay feeling through this transferring approach.

The Last One and Then Another by Kasuraga –

I wonder why I skipped this after the brilliant How Fish is Made, especially since it’s a transposition of Katamari Damacy, one of my favorite games, in an abstract horror hellscape. My only complaint is that I would have taken more of it and that an olfactive plug-in would enhance the experience (or sticking a rotten fish on your GPU while playing it).

The Unholy Smoke by Unprofitable Productions –

I usually don’t write about demos, but this one is promising. Brilliant shotgun mechanic and thick atmosphere of bedlam. I can’t wait to dig further.

Make Me Laugh by noiseminded –

Cards Against Humanity. Peter Kürten edition.



Teleforum (Steamdeck) – Any game that reminds me of the best aspect of Paratopic is an automatic hit for me. The looping narrative avoids the pitfalls of trying to justify the experience while maintaining a lore/world-building before throwing it into the abyss of the unfathomable. Analogic horror done well, refusing the cliché and pushing further.

Alan Wake 2 (PS5) – I was a great fan of the first Alan Wake combat and the Remedy approach to combat in general. It was fast and hectic but still terrifying, a breath of fresh air in horror games’ slow/clumsy trends. I was pretty disappointed in Alan Wake 2 return to that trend, adding bullet-sponge critters (the final boss fight is beyond ridiculous). BUT. There’s no way I can’t highly recommend a game whose development team threw all rational approaches to the budget through the window. The musical is one thing, but for me, the fact they directed a short film worthy of David Lynch that’s completely optional and easy to miss takes the cake. They will probably never recoup from the production cost, even though the unit sales are through the roof. And for this, I salute them.

Turbo Overkill (Steamdeck) – This would have been my number one recommendation for a boomer shooter. Fistpumping dark synth, a brilliant blend of cyberpunk and body horror aesthetic, ultraviolence, a large variety of creative weapons (including chainsaws implemented in each limb), a great sense of humor, complex level design, etc. But it’s at least 5 hours too long, mainly due to frustrating difficulty spikes and uselessly massive levels. Some are uniquely ridiculous (the truck chase is an absolute rush), while several feel like afterthoughts (think sewer). It was still a blast, but I ragequitted the last level and its momentum-breaking timer.