The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

Highlighting the best of the best in indie video games 2016


2016 was a great year for video games all around.

Games like “Overwatch,” “Uncharted 4,” “Civilization VI” and “Dark Souls III” all came out in the last calendar year, and all have been incredibly popular.

Yet with so many Triple-A games taking the spotlight this year, it is easy to forget the less advertized games. To bring some worthy attention to these undersold games, here are some of the best indie video games of the 2016.


“Oxenfree” is the debut game of Night School Studio, founded in 2014. It is the earliest game on this list, as it came out on Jan. 14. “Oxenfree” is a supernatural story-based adventure game, centering on a girl named Alex who goes to a party on an island with her friend and her new stepbrother.

The game is for most major operating systems, Xbox One, and Playstation 4. Not much can be said about the plot without spoiling it, but the $20 price tag is not unreasonable. “Oxenfree” tells two very different stories based on how it is played, but outside of that has little replayability.

Darkest Dungeon 

This game was the first ever released by Red Hook Studios, a company founded in 2013. “Darkest Dungeon” actually came out just four days after “Oxenfree,” on Jan. 19.

As a turn-based strategy roleplaying game and roguelike, “Darkest Dungeon” is exceptionally difficult. It is also much more gritty and dark than any other game on this list, focused on killing monsters and developing psychological illnesses in response to the stresses of that.

The game is on most major operating systems as well as Playstation 4 and Vita. At $25, it’s tied for the highest priced game on this list, but is definitely worth the cost. As a roguelike, it can be played over and over and still provide a new experience every time.


Perhaps the most highly anticipated game on this list, “Owlboy” is the second game to be developed by D-Pad Studio. The game began development in 2007, and was only released on Nov. 1 for Windows. As of Jan. 27 this year, it is also available for macOS and Linux.

“Owlboy” is an adventure platforming game with a gorgeous pixelated art style. The character plays as Otus, a mute owl whose village is attacked by sky pirates. The difficulty is just right, as is the soundtrack and the story. This game is $25 dollars as well, but is also the least replayable. With a playtime of about eight hours, it is up to the individual buyer to decide if the cost is worth the game.

Stardew Valley 

This game was released by Chucklefish Games on Feb. 26, and was the studio’s next big project after releasing “Risk of Rain” in 2013. Taking after the “Harvest Moon” franchise, this simulation role-playing game is all about building up your own farm after you inherit it from your uncle.

On top of farming, the player can also fish, make friends with townsfolk, and slay monsters. “Stardew Valley” is also a game about choosing between supporting an evil capitalist institution and becoming the hero of a magical race of apples. It is a leisurely game, made to be relaxing rather than difficult.

The game began on Steam, and was later released for Playstation 4 and Xbox on Dec. 14, and is coming out on the Nintendo Switch when that console launches. At $15, it is the cheapest game on this list, and has some of the best replayability.

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