12 Phenomenal Indie Games That Deserve Your Attention In 2015
12. Axiom Verge
Electing to do for modern gamers what Super Metroid's legendary release did back in 1995, one-man development powerhouse Tom Happ has paid tribute in everything from the look of the map to the feel of blasting aliens apart with your variety of laser-weapons. The differences come later, through more modern design elements bringing the 'Metroidvania' feel of gameplay up to date. Alongside a brilliantly well-told story that focusses on scientist Trip wielding the titular weapon as he explores the surrounding alien colonies before him, is a bevy of environmental tricks that evoke real-world cartridge errors to give it one hell of a unique feel. Controls are supremely sharp and responsive, exploration is encouraged through every unlockable move (it really is a love letter directly to Castlevania and Super Metroid from start to finish), and better yet, graphical flair exists in the most subtle of places, meaning every boss you take down ends in a shower of deformed pixels. Axiom's difficulty asks a lot of you as a player, remembering where you've been and which paths you're yet to take, but for fans of the aforementioned franchises, this harbinger of nostalgia builds on its legendary brethren to great effect.