Games in the shadows: Top ten obscure games

What kind of games do you play? Mainstream, steam, handheld? What about computer games? Sure, there is League of Legends and Minecraft, but have you wondered what else is out there? There are plenty of great games that get overshadowed by other great games of today and the best part about a lot of them, in my opinion, is that they’re free! Here’s a top 10 list of games that I consider worth trying out. The games might only last for an hour or two, but they’re sure to be very memorable hours, enough to leave a small sense of nostalgia at their mention.

1) Phoenotopia

Quite possibly one of the best 2D games to have been released in 2014, Phoenotopia follows the adventures of Gale on her quest to rescue her village, which ultimately leads to an adventure much bigger. It has a great backstory and theme driven music intermixed with a cute art style that’ll make you fall in love with the game. The game contains tons of secrets, lots of items to collect, missions to complete and a combat system that requires strategy yet leaves room for individual approaches when fighting enemies of various attack patterns. Also, for anyone out there that’s a Zelda fan, this game contains a number of references that pay homage to the series (like holding a new item over your head when you get them).

2) Road of the Dead

Those who don’t like blood should probably stay away from this one, as you play as a man trying to escape from a quarantined city filled with zombies, using his customized car to ram through the undead, the opposing army, barricades and helicopters! It is a first person driving game with excellent graphics and professional voice acting, all coming together with a story that will draw you into the chaos that is the zombie apocalypses.

3) Seedling

Modeled after the old Legend of Zelda game format, Seedling places the player in the role of a boy created from the wind. Not only will the player battle many tough enemies and become more powerful in the process, the game’s story takes your actions into question and may have you forever looking at similar games in a different light.

4) Morningstar

You’ve crashed landed on a deserted planet for an unknown reason. Now what? In this point and click game, the player is tasked with guiding a crewman on surviving the ordeal, repairing the damaged ship, and uncovering the mystery behind why this happened. The game has great artwork and challenging puzzles that are intuitive enough to solve yet still hard enough to leave you scratching your head.

5) Rogue Soul 2

How many times has a sequel been better than the original? At least once now! Rogue Soul 2 is a side-scrolling game where you take the role of a bandit as you jump, slide, stomp, throw knives and glide through levels to collect treasure and beat up enemies trying to stop you. The storyline is refreshing and the humor thrown into the dialogue only helps to endear the main character to the player further. Do you think the bandit is the bad guy? I suppose the only way to know is to play!

6) Endeavor

You think all adventure games are the same? Perhaps Endeavor will change your mind. It is a 2D platform game with a unique art style and music where you play as a dwarf trying to find his way back home, but much like life, there is more than one path and what is right and wrong is often times not clear. Endeavor appears to be partly inspired by the game Shadows of the Colossus.

7) The Grey Rainbow

Although at first glance, it may appear as though a child is responsible for its creation, the Grey Rainbow is a point and click game with hand drawn art (some pictures are better than others admittedly), a few interesting tasks to complete, and a deeply touching story that I’ve found is riddled with words of wisdom that are worthy to be hung on a wall.

8) Gray

This game is the shortest of the adventure games listed though it will probably have the greatest impact on you as a whole. You play as a person trying to convert others over to your view of life. The gray-scale colors as well as minimalistic graphics adds a sense that the situation is a universal experience, a very real piece of everyday life. This game touches on the subjects of politics, sociology and polarization. You will most likely come out of the game with a different meaning behind it than someone else that has played it and yet, you won’t be wrong.

9) Escaping The Prison

What is a game exactly? Although this has been called into question before, nonetheless, Escaping The Prison will provide some laughs and enjoyment to those who experience it. It is a point and click game where you play as Henry Stickman (I think the rest is self explanatory). This game is one in a series of similar games made by PuffballsUnited.

10) Abyss

Had Flappy Bird never came to fame, this might have been the top bird game of the decade. You play as a flightless bird who has been thrown into a volcano by the chief birds of the island in the hopes that you would escape and, in doing so, break the curse held over the island. Sadly, however, the player controls the birds that don’t make it out. Jump from wall to wall to go as far as you can to escape the rising lava and avoid the traps set to stop you from escaping your inevitable fate.

Keep in mind, most of these games were chosen partly due to game play length and overall quality and meaning, but there are games that I very much enjoy and would consider just as unique and worthy of merit as the games listed above despite their length, games such as Looming, Mittens, PROBE, QUAD::, Memohuntress, It Came From Outer Space, Psychiatric Evaluation, Rebuild, Relive Your Life, Swept to the End, The I of It, Escape the Car, Alight (in dreams), Prism Core, Rescuebot. There is a large number of great games out there, all with a little bit of individuality from the creators and I hope you won’t miss out on them!

The series is called Indie Quests.

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