Best Indie Games In May 2023 | Our Top Picks
April showers bring May flowers as well as a bunch of other fresh beginnings to enjoy. Though the outside is enticing with nature in full bloom and the weather lulling you into a nice sense of comfort, you can always find a reason to stay inside. For me, it’s all the pollen out there attacking my senses, so I’m safer indoors with a controller in my hand.
However, as usual, in order to consider what to play, I comb through the upcoming indie games. This month, like practically all months before it, there’s plenty to get excited about. From medieval to outer space, here are the top picks for great new indie games to check out this month.
City of Beats
Everything has a rhythm, you just need to listen for it. Whether or not you believe this, there are developers trying to use games to prove such a point. An upcoming addition to this idea is City of Beats by Torched Hill. The cyberpunk theme really goes well with music and flow, probably due to all the neon lights making it seem like a constant rave. Well, in this cyberpunk city, you’re a rooftop ranger trying to stay above it all. It makes sense after all since the city looks pretty polluted and all the best loot is out of reach. However, there’s still plenty of danger and bad guys trying to knock you down. If that happens, you’ll be left to the RNG of the city skyline as no two places are the same, but at least you’ll have some upgrades and better know-how to improve your chances.
City of Beats will release on May 1 on PC.
It’s still in the middle of spring and yet there are those who want us to think about autumn already. Granted, autumn is my favorite season so I’ll take any excuse to visit it early. Thankfully Team Midautumn is giving me one with its upcoming game Midautumn. Albeit it’s not mainly about the season, much of the game takes place outside and among the trees, but that’s not the most interesting thing.
You play as Robin Lam who was looking to unwind at their grandma’s house only to learn that the Spirit World is a thing. After entering it through the basement, Robin is also appointed the new Spirit World guardian with all the responsibilities and powers that comes with it. This means you’ll need to balance Robin’s real-world life with their spiritual life as they face threats, meet new people, and gain the strengths and skills of their ancestors.
Midautumn will release on May 9 on PC.
Death or Treat
While you may get too old for trick-or-treating, you’re never too old for Halloween. Although it’s still months away, Death or Treat by Saona Studios will have you celebrating it early. Unfortunately, this will have to wait as the holiday is in jeopardy! Yes, apparently the Halloween Spirit has gone missing and that’s not good. Luckily a plucky and adorable ghost ironically named Scary is on the mission. He’s going to explore every nook and cranny of the ever-changing HallowenTown to save the spirit. Scary’s got a lot of powers to work with and as you lead him through his adventure, he’ll gain even more. Pick up your bag, mask, and plastic sword to make sure there’ll be a Halloween this year!
Death or Treat will release on May 11 on PC, Switch, PlayStation, and Xbox.
There are a lot of things associated with the word drift, but what comes to my mind are the words “quiet”, “slow”, and “mysterious”. Not to toot my own horn, by my mind may have hit the concept on the head according to Drift by KAR Games. The whole time you’re playing, you are drifting in one form or another. The setup definitely sounds bleak: You and your team end up stranded on an unknown asteroid drifting through space while conducting research. Hope is not lost though since you still have plenty of equipment and each other for support. It’s also fortunate that the asteroid is rich in useful and valuable resources. Mine these, turn them into devices, and more so that you can escape the asteroid and see more of the universe.
Drift will release on May 12 on PC.
Castle Of Alchemists
Alchemists are basically the scientists of the wizard world which means they deal with a lot of potions and magical mixtures. This means that they can come up with unbelievably concoctions and devices that would be fun to see in practice. You can see what I mean in Team Machiavelli’s Castle of Alchemists. You are a powerful warrior who has been tweaked by alchemical meddling and you have one job: Protect the castle. You may be alone but with your superhuman strength and all the gear you have access to, you’re by no means defenseless. Find the fastest routes around the castle as you set up traps and other defenses to deal with the onslaught of intruders. If things get too hairy, you’re always welcome to throw yourself into the heart of the fray.
Castle of Alchemists will release on May 17 on PC.
Warhammer 40,000: Boltgun
Warhammer 40k is responsible for what has come to be known as the grimdark genre. The series is set in the far future where space-faring is commonplace and everyone is constantly at war with each other. While there are plenty of titles that have you controlling massive armies, Auroch Digital wants to take a Doom-like approach to the conflict with Warhammer 40,000: Boltgun. As a solo space marine, one of the strongest factions in the Warhammer 40k universe, you are armed with the trademark weapon, the Boltgun. With this in hand, you’re off on an FPS action adventure where everything is sprites and even scraping an enemy will explode blood at you. It looks fast, gory, and satisfying so jump in your power armor and get blasting.
Warhammer 40,000: Boltgun will release on May 23 on PC, Switch, PlayStation, and Xbox.
Do Not Feed the Monkeys 2099
With the widespread reach and accessibility of the internet, everyone is out there in one way or another. The creepy thing is that there are people whose job it is to observe everyone in any way they can. Fictorama Studios took this premise and put it into Do Not Feed the Monkeys, and continues it in Do Not Feed the Monkeys 2099. This sequel puts you in the far future where everyone is online in one way or another. Your goal as a creepy observer is to creepily observe them and gather information without drawing attention to yourself. It’s a game built around humor and weirdness in a future filled with all a manner of species and ways to share what you’re doing with everyone else. The challenge is despite what you see, you must follow the cardinal rule: Do NOT feed the monkeys.
Do Not Feed the Monkeys 2099 will release on May 25 on PC and Switch.
Space Mechanic Simulator
If there’s one job that will remain secure forever, it’s the job of fixing things. Everything breaks in one way or another and if it can break, there’s a good chance that someone knows how to fix it. This will become more prevalent as machinery gets more advance as can be seen in Space Mechanic Simulator by Atomic Jelly and Tomas Jelonek Studio. If you haven’t guessed already, this game has you playing as a space mechanic in space where there is a lot of technology floating around. Satellites, space stations, spaceships, and more are constantly breaking down which is lucky for you to maintain your job security. Just make sure you do a good job otherwise you’ll fly off into the void unable to reap any of the benefits.
Space Mechanic Simulator will release on May 31 on PC.
Will Quick is a freelance media wizard living in Spain. When he's not gaming or writing, he's doodling comics or whatever else pops in his head.