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Indiescovery Episode 11: Our favourite indie games of 2023 so far

The GOTFHOTYs special

Four images, running clockwise: A young man strikes a confident combat pose while fighting off monsters with exposed brains while a giant skull vomits green mist overhead. A figure with a skeletal head and long braided hair wearing a cap faces the viewer, with a clock on the wall in the background. The Indiescovery Podcast logo shows a stylised video game mini-map. A young woman stands in a field of purple grass with a forest of pine trees in the background, and what might be a grave marker close beside her.
Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun

Somehow it's June already, which means it's time for the Indiescovery crew to suppress our existential dread at the fleetingness of existence and take a look at our favourite indie games from the first (almost) half of 2023! Don't worry, we very quickly realise that June has such a slammed line-up we can probably give it a best-games episode all of its own to make up for the fact that we tackled this topic a bit early.

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Episode notes

I kick things off by talking about Birth, a lovely chill puzzle game about natural decay and the bonds between people, and then revisit pixel-art life sim Tiny Life now that it's out in early access. Rachel submits the emotionally-charged open-world cycling mystery Season: A Letter To The Future, and Liam can't get enough of retro shooter Slayers X: Terminal Aftermath: Vengance Of The Slayer which is (a) excitingly being released today and (b) deserves to win some kind of award for the most subtitles in a video game name, seriously, Kingdom Hearts can only dream. We also all still love Dredge but decide we've gushed about it enough on the podcast already, and that you should go back and listen to Episode 8 if you want to hear our opinions on why that's a very likely GOTY contender.

In the episode's second half we summon the Ghost of Games Yet-To-Come and list off some of the indies we still hope to see by the end of 2023. Liam can't wait to get his hands on El Paso Elsewhere, the From Dusk Till Dawn-esque action-shooter we never knew we needed this badly; and Knuckle Sandwich, a colourful turn-based RPG where the combat plays out through WarioWare-style minigames. I opt to chant a list of upcoming games with a TBC release date as a kind of protective spell for all the hard-working indie devs out there, before naming the recently delayed Goodbye Volcano High as one I'm still hopeful of seeing before the year's out. Rachel, meanwhile, is sending good vibes to the developers working on dimension-bending storybook platformer The Plucky Squire and nostalgically radical skate/bike/parkour adventure Bomb Rush Cyberfunk, both of which aim to release later in 2023.

Finally, and as ever, we delve into our current hyperfixations. Following his secondment to cover The Legend Of Zelda: Tears Of The Kingdom for some of our console-acknowledging sister sites, Liam has discovered that this hidden gem from Nintendo is a really good game, actually. I've been playing visual novels again (surprise, surprise), and am enjoying the contrast that comes from following up the decidedly-not-indie Paranormasight: The Seven Mysteries Of Honjo with the extremely-indie fangame Love Is Strange. And while Rachel never expected to be talking about Kylie Minogue on an indie gaming podcast in 2023, she simply can't get the new single Padam Padam out of her head!

The gang are also pleased to announce that we're jury members at Indie Cup UK '23, an online festival celebrating indie devs, so be sure to check out our pals at to see what we're up to!

Indiescovery is a podcast from All music is by Dylan Sitts; the songs are Tahoe Trip, Pool Sticker, and Express Check-in. Thanks for listening!

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