Where will I find the time to play Below & Hyper Light Drifter?

“Below” and “Hyper Light Drifter” look to be very fun, unique, and visually stunning.

Aside from the occasional round of Alto’s Adventure or Monument Valley on my iPhone, I have precious little time or resources to play video games these days. And yet, there are so many great-sounding titles out there today (or soon to be out there). And I’m not referring to the big budget titles that make headlines coming out of E3; I’m referring to smaller titles that, nevertheless, are filled with style and verve to spare. You can add Below and Hyper Light Drifter to that small-but-elite list.


Produced by Capybara Games (previously known for Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP), Below is a top-down roguelike dungeon crawler that finds your character exploring a massive underground system of caverns and structures. From the trailers and press materials, it’s obvious that a lot of emphasis has been placed on communicating the vastness and alienness of what you’re exploring. Oh, and music by Jim Guthrie has a nice, ominous synthwave tone to it that’s simply aces.

Not a lot is known about the plot, but the game is apparently very difficult and death is permanent. If you die, you must work your way back through as a new character, and try to pick up where your previous character left off.

Below will be released this summer for Xbox One and PC.

Hyper Light Drifter
Hyper Light Drifter

Hyper Light Drifter

Funded by a very successful Kickstarter campaign, and inspired by designer Alex Preston’s own battle with heart disease (and Hayao Miyazaki’s movies), Hyper Light Drifter is an action RPG with a very unique look inspired by classic 8-bit and 16-bit games. Preston says that “visions for this game have been fluttering in my skull for ages,” and the game has a interesting style that evokes both fantasy and sci-fi. Indeed, the game’s description talks about “forgotten knowledge, lost technologies and broken histories.”

The game’s retro look — and Miyazaki-esque animations — remind me of Children of Morta, but with a decidedly more sci-fi twist. In a word, it looks fantastic. (And sounds fantastic, too, thanks to Disasterpeace’s soundtrack.)

Hyper Light Drifter comes out on March 31 for Mac and PC (preorder) and later this year for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

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