2016 Nindie Round-Up

This year we witnessed Nintendo spend hours upon hours showcasing Zelda, yet they only released snippets and a sizzle reel for their Wii U Nindie games coming out in 2016. Below you can check out some of the upcoming games heading your way before Nintendo makes its last call for the Wii U.

Mighty No. 9 is the currently maligned brainchild of Keiji Inafune which claims to be the spiritual successor to Mega Man. The gameplay involves you taking control of Beck, a small combat robot. He contains a human heart and is able to possess the ability to turn into any other robot.  In traditional Mega Man fashion you must battle other robots, take their powers, and defeat an evil Mad Scientist. The game was released on June 21st to much scrutiny for a combination of constant release date setbacks, massive bugs (including potential bricking rumors for WiiU), and the now infamous quote of “It’s better than nothing.” So far only the brave are picking this game up on the WiiU and those that have are giving mixed reports. Wii U specific features include off-screen play.


Tumblestone claims to be the “first original action-puzzle game of the past 15 years”.  While unreleased it has garnered various awards at PAX, IndieCade, Intel Level Up, and other gaming competitions. The game revolves around matching 3 color boxes together as they fall towards the bottom by shooting them with a laser. If you are an old school puzzle gaming fan and just aren’t happy with mobile offerings, this looks like the game to pick up this summer! Special features for WiiU includes full controller support (Gamepad, Wii remotes, Classic Controllers, and WiiU Pro Controllers), landscape/portrait WiiU Gamepad functionality, and Miiverse Integration.

Axiom Verge is the much acclaimed retro-style Metroidvania game that is finally making its way to the Wii U. In Axiom Verge you play as a failed scientist that dies in an accident to awaken in a mysterious, alien world. Gameplay consists of 9 non-linear labyrinthine, interlocking areas, over 40 weapons/tools with almost 100 upgrades to unlock, almost 1000 rooms, and in-game “glitches” that allow you to break the boundaries of normal gameplay. Exclusive features to the Wii U include a customizable menu on the Gamepad where you can toggle the maps, weapons descriptions, notes, and passcode tool. Rounding out the Wii U specific features include an Off-TV play mode.


Jotun: Valhalla Edition is a hand-drawn action exploration game where you play as Thora, a Viking warrior who died an inglorious death and must prove herself to the Gods to enter Valhalla. Major selling points include epic boss battles and beautiful hand-drawn graphics that are akin to a storybook exploration of Norse mythology. Reviews of the game are generally positive on metacritic and overwhelmingly so on Steam. Gamepad integration includes a constantly visible map and God Power activation on the touch screen.


Noitu Love : Devolution is the second game action game in the Noitu Love series that takes place 100 years after the world is saved from the evil Darns. In Devolution it is up to Xoda Rap to save the world as you fight through seven different stages that include several different tactics and boss battles along the way. Reviews of the games evoke feelings of classics such as Mischief Makers and Gunstar Heroes so if you are looking for a 16-bit inspired, fast paced action game this is the one to look out for. Wii U specific features are sparse at the moment outside of touch/pointer controls to emulate the unique mouse controls. The release date has not been set in stone but should be out before next year.


DubWars is a Robotron inspired space-shooter that fires your weapons in beat with the Dub Step music playing in the background. While playing, various musical noises will cause your spaceship to fire off different effects leading to the inevitable dubstep drops which in-turn fire massive screen filling lasers. Before playing a level the game displays a loading screen talking about the musician responsible for your inevitable victory or demise. Gameplay becomes harder during silent musical passages and includes 10 levels with selectable difficulty. Currently information regarding the Wii U release is non-existent so keep an eye on Nintendo Enthusiast for future updates.


Severed is a touch based RPG with light adventure gaming built in. You take control of a one-armed warrior named Sasha who wields a living sword on a journey through a nightmare world in search of her family. Severed has a very vector-influenced style similar to their last project, Guacamelee.  Check out Severed this summer on Wii U with features that include Cross-Buy with 3DS, in-game achievements, and off-tv play.


EctoPlaza is a competitive 2 to 4 local player smash’em up where you choose a ghostly friend to fling, dodge, and ground-pound your way to victory. EctoPlaza was an IndieCade Official Select and winner of the “Dare to be Digital Audience Choice Award” in 2015. Information on specific Wii U Gamepad integration is bleak at the moment but look for this game to jump out and spook you sometime this summer!


Forma.8 is another game in the Metroidvania genera based on a small exploration probe stranded alone on the surface of an alien planet. The gives the player no weapons or hints because it is up to the player to explore the planet and deal with its often hostile inhabitants. The story of the planet is uncovered visually as there is no verbal communication in the game. This may be a fun game to pick up if you were a fan of Affordable Space Adventures as it has a somewhat similar core idea but with more freedom to explore.  Currently there is no information on Wii U specific features.


Rive is a self-described metal wrecking, robot hacking shooter. The player causes fast-paced destruction in 360 degrees and is able to hack into enemies to have them help you in creating utter mayhem. Currently the game is scheduled for September 2016 on the Wii U with off-tv play.


Rocket Fist is an arena game where you battle as robots with the ability to fire off their fists of fury. Think of the game as robot enhanced dodgeball for 1 to 4 players on the same screen. As of now, there seems to be no special Wii U features but if you are looking for something fun to play with friends in the same room check this game out in August.


Soul Axiom is a first-person story-driven adventure puzzle game set in a futuristic cyber world. The game touts multiple powers, multiple endings, and a sort of choose your own destiny concept. Currently there is no information on Wii U specific features nor a specific release date.


Hollow Knight is a sidescrolling adventure game using gorgeous hand drawn graphics. You play as the enigmatic Hollow Knight as you brave the depths of a forgotten kingdom beneath the town of Dirtmouth. As of right now there is little information on Wii U specific features but this is one of the rare games that will only be on Wii U and not other consoles. There is no official release date for this game as of yet.


Shantae: Half-Genie Hero is the latest game in the Shantae series where you explore action packed worlds, conquer diabolical bosses, and belly dance to transform into powerful new forms. The game uses thousands of frames of hand drawn animation and offers various play styles with the addition of DLC characters. The game touts classic controller pro support and full HD graphics. Look for Shantae: Half-Genie Hero on September 27.


Hive Jump is a chaotic run-and-gun 2D platformer where you can team up with 4 players in local multiplayer to kill aliens, avoid traps, and collect treasures and lost relics. The main goal is to defeat the hive queen to save the galaxy from further infestation. Wii U specific features include unlocking exclusive content via amiibo, mini-maps, and other navigational systems on the Gamepad. Look for Hive Jump sometime this summer!


Zarvot is a local multiplayer battle game where up to four players can duke it out in minimalistic “voxelike battlescapes”. The game is intended for people who don’t necessarily like the complexity of most fighting games but want to duke it out anyway. Very little information is out there regarding the Wii U release or any specific features.


Stardew Valley is a farming simulation role-playing game with tons of content ranging from farming and fishing to a mysterious cave you can delve deeper into and fight off monsters. As of right now details are sparse in regards to the Wii U version but the developer has been very keen on using the Wii U gamepad to improve controls. Look for Stardew Valley sometime in Q4 2016.


Kerbal Space Program is a game where you must build a space-worthy craft, capable of flying its little alien crew into outerspace, without killing them. In this version you will be able to control your ship from inside the Wii U gamepad, plan your flight with touchscreen controls, and steer your ship with gyro motion controls. While there is no release date listed the developers are claiming the Wii U to be the “definitive version” of Kerbal Space Program.

So that is it for now folks! Check out Nintendo Enthusiast for future updates on these Nindies as more information becomes available.

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