Steam has well over 30,000 games to choose from right now. Unfortunately, a lot of good independent games have been missed.
Even though other online digital markets like Humble Bundle, the Epic Games Store, and Green Man Gaming have opened up, the Steam Store still has more users than any of them. It’s one of the few online game shops with third-party sellers, game sharing, and, perhaps most importantly, a close-knit community. Fans still love what Steam offers and how their purchases almost always make sense, especially when you consider how cheap some of these games can be.
There are a lot of great games that are hard to find on Steam, but players who do find them say that they are some of the best the shop has to offer. Many of them were made by independent creators, which is why most gamers can’t play them. Even though the people who make these hidden gems rarely have the kind of marketing budgets they need to make their work stand out, the great material they have is enough to do that on its own. With this kind of word-of-mouth promotion, these games get the legs they need to compete with bigger AAA releases and show why they are so good on their own.
- Developer: Omocat LLC
- Publisher: Omocat LLC
- Initial Release Date: December 25, 2020
Omori is one of the best indie RPGs of all time. At first glance, the world seems happy and silly, but when you look closer, you see something really dark and scary in the background that will scare any player out of their mind. Players need to have a strong gut to deal with the disturbing content in this interesting game.
Omori did sell a good number of copies, but it’s a crime that more people don’t talk about how great this book is. Fans of unique turn-based RPGs owe it to themselves to check out this amazing game. Its charming writing and troubling mystery make for a great time, and players slowly figure out why the game is so dark.
- Developer: David Szymanski
- Publisher: David Szymanski
- Initial Release Date: March 10, 2022
David Szymanski is an independent creator who has gotten a lot of attention for making fun games like Dusk and Gloomwood. He has done quite a bit of work in horror games, and Iron Lung, a unique game that fans should definitely check out, is one of his most underrated works. The whole game takes place inside a cramped submarine, where players explore an ocean of blood on a strange moon.
The game knows how to make the world feel scary and mysterious at the same time. The monster that lives in the ocean is really scary, but players don’t get to see it very often. The only clues they get are from the camera on the submarine, which does a great job of making the player feel afraid as the huge monster slowly destroys the submarine.
- Developer: Failbetter Games
- Publisher: Failbetter Games
- Initial Release Date: February 6, 2015
The idea of discovering a version of London that is underground, where people can’t stand to see the sun, and where nightmare creatures roam is a really interesting one. Sunless Sea does a great job of making the most of this setting, which makes for a thrilling experience as players find new places to explore and discover a lot of mysteries that are emphasised by the game’s excellent writing.
The game has a great mood, and players can easily spend a hundred hours in it before they figure out what it’s all about. Early on, the game is very hard, but each time you die, you learn more about how the world works and what you need to do to defeat its many threats.
A Short Hike
- Developer: adamgryu
- Publisher: adamgryu
- Initial Release Date: July 30, 2019
Even though it doesn’t look like much at first, A Short Hike is a great game that you should definitely try. Everything about it, from the cute but simple graphics to the great non-linear story, is very well done. Players are free to explore the game’s beautiful world in any way and at any speed they want.
The game’s slow pace and lively music make it one of the most relaxing games ever made, which is pretty impressive when you think about how few people actually worked on it. As the name might suggest, it’s not very long, but given how cheap it is, few people would complain about that.
- Developer: kouri
- Publisher: PLAYISM
- Initial Release Date: April 11, 2022
Ib came out in 2012, but it was redone with the latest version of RPG Maker ten years later. It’s a 2D exploration game set in a mysterious art museum, just like the first one. The main character loses her parents and has to wander around the constantly changing exhibits, like a character from Night at the Museum.
Ib isn’t a very scary game overall, but it can be a little creepy at times. This makes it a great game for anyone looking for something to make the hairs stand up on the back of their neck. It’s also one of the most underrated horror games on Steam. At the time of writing, only a few thousand people had found out about the remake.
Cats Organized Neatly
- Developer: DU&I
- Publisher: DU&I
- Initial Release Date: October 13, 2020
Cats Organised Neatly is, as its name suggests, a 2D puzzle game in which players have to order a group of cats so that they all fit into a grid. It’s like one of those shape games that a lot of people played when they were younger, but with cute cats instead of little plastic pieces. It might sound boring, but it’s actually a lot of fun and very peaceful.
Even though there isn’t much to the game in terms of how it’s played, it can be pretty hard because there are so many different things to do. There are eighty different rounds and many different kinds of cats, which should keep players busy for a long time.
- Developer: Digital Cybercherries
- Publisher: Digital Cybercherries
- Initial Release Date: April 27, 2020
Hypercharge: Unboxed is fun, which is something that most of the other Toy Story games weren’t. Some people might prefer an adventure with well-known characters like Buzz and Woody, but if you want a game about toys with great gameplay, you could do a lot worse. When the game is at its best, they’ll be hard-pressed to find anything better.
Digital Cybercherries has put a lot of love and care into the game, and everyone can see it. This is true not only of the game’s great graphics, but also of how well the game works. So, Hypercharge: Unboxed is one of the most interesting and fun games that you might not know about on Steam.
- Developer: Baseline
- Publisher: Baseline
- Initial Release Date: March 4, 2017
Deceit is a multiplayer game where dialogue is a big part of the game. The game, however, is not about working as a team, as its name suggests. Instead, it is a test of how well a player can trick other players. It’s more of a mind game than a horror game, but there are a lot of scary parts to it.
Deceit is different from most of the other Steam games, but it is similar to games like Among Us, even though Deceit came out first. The game is cheap on the Steam Store, so there isn’t much reason for people who like social trickery and imposter games not to at least give it a try.
- Developer: Thunder Lotus Games
- Publisher: Thunder Lotus Games
- Initial Release Date: August 17, 2020
Spiritfarer stands out from other games because of its beautiful art style and story that makes you think. The players’ job is to take the souls of the dead to their final resting places. They must build their own boat to not only get all of the lost souls to their final resting places, but also to find them in the game’s colourful world.
Even though exploring is fun in and of itself, it might be how the player interacts with the ghosts that makes the experience so fun. The design is also very good. The hand-drawn art and animation make it one of the most visually appealing games of the past few years. There are also ways to make and farm, for those who like that sort of thing.
- Developers: Adriaan de Jongh & Sylvian Tegroeg
- Publisher: Adriaan de Jongh
- Initial Release Date: February 15, 2017
In this hidden object game, players have to find some people in a wide range of beautifully drawn places. The game is like the Where’s Waldo book series. All of the places in Hidden Folks were drawn on paper first, then scanned and put into the game. Most of the time, the effects are pretty amazing.
Even if they’re not what players are supposed to be looking for, most of the items in the game can be used in some way. Hidden Folks might be the perfect game for people who want a relaxing game that doesn’t take a lot of work.
My Time At Portia
- Developer: Pathea Games
- Publisher: Team17
- Initial Release Date: January 15, 2019
My Time at Portia is easy to compare to games like Stardew Valley and Harvest Moon.The thing that makes it stand out, though, is its post-apocalyptic setting, which, despite being about the end of the world, comes across as being very nice.
Players must, among other things, grow food and raise animals to rebuild a workshop. There’s enough to do in Basket Random game to keep people interested for well over 60 hours, making it a great choice for strategy game fans who want a new game to spend a lot of time with.
- Developer: Ultra Runaway Games
- Publisher: Ultra Runaway Games
- Initial Release Date: November 21, 2013
Even though Paper Sorcerer is a new game, it plays like a dungeon-crawling RPG from the 1980s. It’s a game with an old-school theme that has turn-based fighting, interesting dialogue, and some great puzzles that will make players scratch their heads as they try to figure out the right answers.
The game is not only about solving puzzles, but also about collecting creatures. Players can beat monsters and get them to fight with them in battle. Paper Sorcerer is a great game for a lot of reasons. One of them is that it has hand-drawn sprites with a high quality.
Wuppo: Definitive Edition
- Developers: Knuist & Perzik
- Publisher: SOEDESCO
- Initial Release Date: September 29, 2016
In Wuppo, players take control of a made-up monster called a Wum as it looks for a new home. He goes on an adventure full of puzzles and monsters after being kicked out of his home. Even though the art style might make you think otherwise, this isn’t just a kids’ game. People of all ages can enjoy this epic journey.
The settings in Wuppo: Definitive Edition change all the time, which is part of what makes the game so fun. Many people will go into Wuppo: Definitive Edition with low hopes, but they will soon change their minds after loving every bit of it. It’s a great game that not enough people have tried.
- Developer: Empyrean
- Publishers: Frozen District & PlayWay S.A.
- Initial Release Date: May 17, 2018
House Flipper is a fantastic secret gem for people who like to break things and who are also interested in fixing up houses. When you play House Flipper, you do everything from building to cleaning. This makes the game a lot more complex than just “point, click, and destroy.”
When players do their jobs right, they can fix up houses and sell them for a profit. But people who just want to break things can still have a lot of fun, even if they don’t get as much out of it. If you have the right equipment, you can also play the game in virtual reality, which makes you feel like you’re right in the middle of the action.
The House In Fata Morgana
- Developer: Novectacle
- Publisher: MangaGamer
- Initial Release Date: May 14, 2016
The House in Fata Morgana is a visual novel about going on a trip through time. They’ll wake up in a creepy old house and have no idea who their maid is when she stands in front of them. As soon as they start to look around the game’s world, though, they’ll find that the house is full of mysterious doors that can take them back in time.
The story is interesting all the way to the end because there is no sense of time, life, or death. It’s a pretty long game, especially for a visual novel. Players will need about 27.5 hours to finish it. But it’s definitely worth it, because this secret gem is a must-play.