Best indie games for Xbox One 2022
(Pocket Ribbon) – There are so many games that are not published by the mega companies that regularly release AAA titles, and some are so good you can hardly believe how few people have worked on them.
We play tons of indie games every year, from short trips to more in-depth experiences, and rounded up the very best options to play on the Xbox One, One X or One S – check them out!
If you’re looking for a different game genre, check out our dedicated listings in the table below.
What are the best indie games on Xbox One?
Disco ElysiumHollow KnightWhat’s left of Edith FinchHadesBrandwachtInsideStardew ValleyCelesteUntitled Goose GameDeath’s Door
The most daring and stunning RPG we’ve played in ages also happens to be an independent game. Disco Elysium puts you in the shoes (once you find them) of a failing detective who sits on a huge bend and must change things by solving a crime.
Whether you do that or waste your time looking for booze and drugs is up to you, with countless other options all equally enticing, and the degree to which you are free to shape your own story is astonishing. It’s a joy to play and needs as wide an audience as possible.
This beautiful game is the product of a small team and has a distinctive and memorable tone. It’s melancholic and wondrous, with hand-drawn art drawing you into an underworld populated by insects and critters, some friendly and most bent on killing you.
You’ll slowly make your way through an expansive map, tackling challenging boss encounters and figuring out how to stop corruption at the heart of the underworld. Hollow Knight is a treasure taking notes from classics like Super Metroid and Dark Souls.
What’s left of Edith Finch
Storytelling is often something that even budget games struggle to get right, but What Remains of Edith Finch definitely manages to capture it. You will explore a huge house and tell the stories of unfortunate members of the Finch family and their untimely demise.
Each is its own vignette with a unique style and gameplay hook, and most of them are heartbreakingly sad. They come together in a collage of stories to make a wonderful point about the nature of family and mythology, all in just a few short hours.
Hades, a great roguelike, makes the genre incredibly welcoming by enveloping it in a brilliant story – every time you return to the beginning of your runs you will encounter a number of characters who will give you a few new lines, some with great revelations.
This means that no run feels like a waste because you are always rewarded with something. In addition, it has excellent combat with a range of random skills that you collect over time, each making your attempt to escape the underworld different from the last.
A game so beautiful that we could walk around in it forever. Firewatch tells the story of a lonely soul who has gone to spend a season in a lighthouse, searching for sparks that could threaten vast forests. With companionship available only through your radio, the pace is leisurely.
Every area you explore is just incredibly beautiful, with a masterful appreciation for color and scenery, and the story that unfolds as you walk around is beautiful too. An ideal choice for someone looking for a more relaxed time.
A side-scroller that is mechanically quite simple and quite short to play through, but will stay in the memory for a very long time thanks to a second half that gets more and more disturbed as it progresses. Saying much more would be to spoil its awesome twists.
However, the visuals are at just the right level for the story it tells, and the whole atmosphere of the game is incredibly well captured. Trust us, you’ll want to play this without knowing much more than we’ve said here.
When a game is made entirely by a single creator, you know it’s probably going to be interesting, but Stardew Valley is more than just a curiosity. It’s a lovely little portal to sink into so you can move to the countryside and start a farm to get away from it all.
You meet a whole city of characters, fishing, harvesting, mining and sowing crops through the seasons, and it’s open enough to support hundreds of hours of gameplay if you’re really okay with the laid-back pace and chilled-out vibe it’s on the hallway.
Sometimes a platformer comes with controls so finely tuned that it feels like a revelation to just move around in them. Celeste nails that foundation so thoroughly that it’s worth a try right away if you like running and jumping.
It also tells a moving story and has a difficulty level that’s expertly tuned – to the point where you’ll be using movement mechanics in the final stages, forcing you to pause for a moment to see if you could make it as a professional speedrunner.
Untitled Goose Game
A game so charming that we still recommend it to people who claim not to like games, in Untitled Goose Game you have to take on the role of a very mischievous goose tearing apart a typical English village in search of a bell to steal .
It has great art style and a dynamic soundtrack that provides comedic moments of brilliance as you apply switcheroos to hapless residents. It’s short and sweet, but fun to play as well as watch, such is its cartoonish beauty.
The door of death
A beautiful, Dark Souls inspired Zelda-esque, Death’s Door may have influences, but it feels like its own thing. You are a crow tasked with luring the souls of the dead out of the world, which is a pretty tough task that gets even more challenging when they don’t want to go anywhere.
The visual style is excellent, the bosses are fun, and the dungeon design is classic and worth exploring, as are the many secrets it offers to more dedicated players. Add to that a very good soundtrack and you have an indie game that meets all requirements.
More about this story
Every game in this list has been tested and played by our team to make sure it’s worth getting included.
We’ve played through their campaigns, put hours into their multiplayer offerings, and carefully compared them to direct competitors to make sure they represent the most satisfying and rewarding options on their platform.
However, with every collection it is not possible to provide a list that will work for every type of user. That’s why we rely on the experiences and opinions of the wider Pocket-lint team – and also thoroughly assess the areas above – to do our best in this regard.
What we always avoid with these guides are unnecessary details – we just want to provide an easy-to-understand summary that gives you an idea of what each game is like to play.
Written by Max Freeman-Mills.