How are we already done with January? It’s been a fairly quiet month, but that doesn’t mean that there haven’t been a few gems here and there. If you didn’t go through your entire gaming budget over the holidays, here is a chance to try something new.
Here are 10 games that you might have missed that may be worth adding to your collection.
Miss our 2023 list? Give it a read here – it was an incredible year for gaming.
Hidden Through Time 2: Myths & Magic
Who Is It For? Hidden Through Time 2: Myths & Magic is a nice little game for puzzle fans who think they have a keen eye. It’s more of a digital “Where’s Waldo” book than a game, but it’s still entertaining. When players finish the story mode, they can enjoy creating their hidden object puzzles in the game’s Architect mode, which can be shared online to extend the life of this cozy little game.
Who Is It For? There aren’t too many solid point-and-click games coming out these days. Lil’ Guardsman is here for those who need more of these games. Fans of the genre are not only getting a new game, but they are getting one that’s exceptional. Lil’ Guardsman has great puzzles and a better narrative that makes this a must-play.
The Legend of Steel Empire
Who Is It For? Just look at the screenshot above. This is for the fans of retro shoot ’em-ups. This is a port of a ’90s game that still holds up surprisingly well, especially considering that it’s one that you don’t often hear about like R-Type or Cotton. Those who aren’t hardcore fans or score chasers may want to try one of the more prolific shoot ’em-ups on the Switch, but this is an excellent addition to the library for anyone who has exhausted all of the hits.
Who Is It For? Anyone who needs a new platformer can’t go wrong with The Cub. It may be short, but the low price point combined with a genuinely interesting story and competent gameplay makes this one to keep an eye on. It looks great, sounds great, and has just enough interesting set pieces to make this one of the best platformers under $15.
Who Is It For? This is the second puzzle game on our list this month, but it plays more like a video game than a search-and-find book. The puzzles here are excellent, even if they don’t innovate the genre. The narrative and setting are entirely told through the puzzles and environment, and there is enough here to hook puzzle enthusiasts. It’s hard to do much better.
Who Is It For? The third game in the Pixel Pulps series is perfect for those who have already played Mothmen 1966 and Varney Lake. It continues that retro, pulpy horror feel while delivering an entirely original story. Anyone who hasn’t jumped into this trilogy owes it to themselves to give these games a try. You don’t need to play the previous games since the series utilizes the anthology format, but Bahnsen Knight’s predecessors are excellent, so why would you start here?
Who Is It For? I am once again here to share the best Metroidvania of the month. Anyone who enjoys Metroidvanias that are blended with Souls-like gameplay should vibe with GRIME. The combat isn’t innovative, but it’s tight. The environments are excellent and have personality. Players will have a great time all the way through, even if GRIME doesn’t do enough to stand among the best in the genre. It’s just well-made and fun, and sometimes that’s all you need.
Legend of Grimrock
Who Is It For? Anyone who misses the old real-time dungeon crawler games of the 90s will fall in love with Legend of Grimrock immediately. It takes the best of a forgotten era and combines it with modern level and combat design to deliver one of the best games of its genre. This is a port, and a well-done one, so even those who experienced the original on PC might want to double dip because this one is great in handheld mode.
Who Is It For? This is easily the clunkiest game on the list, but fans of horror classics, especially Fatal Frame, might want to check this one out. DreadOut has a lot of things going on that should disqualify it from being a good game. The character models look clunky. The combat is janky. The story is full of cliches. It’s not even that scary. Still, DreadOut 2 is just a fun time, and I’m a sucker for using a camera to switch into first-person view to face the horrors dead on. If anyone needs a short and fun horror game, DreadOut 2 might be what they are looking for.
UNDER NIGHT IN-BIRTH II Sys:Celes
Who Is It For? I know that Tekken is the big fighting game of the month, but that isn’t on Switch, so this is what you get if you want a new fighter. Fortunately, UNDER NIGHT IN-BIRTH II Sys:Celes is a really good game, even if I have no idea how to pronounce it. It is full of singleplayer content, has smooth gameplay, and features great tutorials for easing newcomers into the game. If anyone needs an anime-style fighter and is waiting for the next Guilty Gear or BlazBlue, this is a good game to sink your time into.
There you have it! What are your favorite games of the month? Did we miss anything? Let us know in the comments below!