The Nintendo Switch already has an enormous library of indie games at this point, but it definitely isn't slowing its momentum down. Just the other day, Nintendo held their latest Indie Highlights presentation. It gave a spotlight to nine unique, lovely indie titles (and a quick roll through many more) making their way to Switch this year. One of the standout highlights was the announcement of a new SteamWorld game, which is fitting timing after Heist, Dig, and Dig 2 all made their way to the handheld-hybrid console. The new game is grandly titled SteamWorld Quest: Hand of Gilgamech (or just SteamWorld Quest for short). The SteamWorld series has seen itself put through a lot of different genres over the past nine years, like tower defense and platforming, but now, developer Image & Form is ready to try something new. SteamWorld Quest, as the name implies, is an RPG that utilizes card game mechanics in battle. Basically, it's the Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories of the series.


One of the first things you'll notice about SteamWorld Quest immediately upon seeing it is its beautiful, hand-drawn art style that gives it a very down to Earth appearance. The game leans in heavily on its fantasy inspirations for its artwork and character designs and combines them with the ever-popular aesthetic of steampunk. As players make their way through SteamWorld Quest, they'll collect a total of 100 unique punch-cards to build their decks and effectively fight in combat. The official description of the game goes into more detail. "What awaits you is a luscious treasure chest filled with gold, dragons, vivid worlds, magic, knights in shining armor as well as XP, turn-based battles and all that good RPG stuff!" it reads. If you've had a hankering for a good fantasy game lately, SteamWorld Quest has got your back... when it releases, anyway. The card battling system can be seen front and center in the trailer, and it looks every bit as fun as it sounds.

Other games of note seen throughout the presentation were Wargroove, Double Kick Heroes, When Ski Lifts Go Wrong, Forager, Goat Simulator, Inmost, Unruly Heroes, and CrossCode. Phew, that's a lot of indie games! Image & Form, meanwhile, seem to be trucking along just as fast as Nintendo is. Their SteamWorld series has seen a consistent and steady release cycle ever since its debut with SteamWorld Tower Defense in 2010 on the DSi. Therefore, the developer has always had a really solid relationship with Nintendo, and that looks to only be continuing with SteamWorld Quest. As revealed in the announcement, Quest will have the honor of being a timed exclusive release on Nintendo Switch before it makes its way to other platforms. If you want to play SteamWorld Quest as early as possible, the Switch is the place to do it. The other SteamWorld games (outside of Tower Defense) were made available on pretty much every modern platform imaginable, and once the timed exclusivity ends, it's likely this will be the case for Quest too.


As for when we can actually expect SteamWorld Quest to release, that's still unknown for now. Image & Form is sticking with a 2019 release window for the time being, so they'll update us all once they have something more concrete. The list of other platforms hasn't been outright confirmed yet either, outside of the timed-exclusive Switch launch. The Nintendo Indie Highlights presentation can be viewed down below; it clocks in at just under seventeen minutes, and it's a good look at how the indie space on Switch continues to grow to gargantuan proportions. If you want to get straight to the SteamWorld Quest segment and see what I've been telling you about, skip to 12:42 in the video to see that. Best of luck to all the indie developers mentioned throughout the presentation, and congratulations to them as well! It's a good time to celebrate the work of smaller teams.


Tanner is a freelance writer. He enjoys all things video games, particularly the weirder ones, and can often be found drinking coffee and trying to get through his backlog.

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