Celeste‘s creative platforming mechanics, accommodating difficulty levels, and emotional story make it not only one of the best indie games of the year so far, but one of January 2018 best Steam games period. Universal themes of loving yourself and never giving up only make Celeste that much more memorable, cementing it as a must-play experience no matter the type of person you are.
Subnautica offers huge marine environments filled with adventure and Steam mystery to explore in January 2018. Beautiful aquatic vistas are available for viewing both during the day and at night, adding life to a game that already bares no shortage of thrilling moments from the get-go. If you possess even a slight curiosity about what a world below the sea could be like, look no further than Subnautica.
Dragon Ball FighterZ has the Steam gameplay foundations to usher it into the echelons of some of today’s premiere tournament-worthy fighting games. Easy-to-learn mechanics, beautifully rendered Dramatic Finishes, and a challenging arcade mode make it an entertaining title that’ll make you want to invite all of your fellow Dragon Ball fans over for a couple of matches, if only to see Vegeta curse Kakarot’s name one more time.
Railway Empire forces you to think on your feet, as strong tactical track building skills are needed to effectively place and link your train lines. Aside from this, the Steam game also serves as a lesson detailing the development of the transcontinental railway and other significant events in America’s train history. If you’ve ever been passionate about locomotives, Railway Empire is right up your alley.
Disturbing cult classic Yume Nikki has finally made it’s way onto Steam after releasing via RPG Maker nearly a decade ago. The title in January 2018, which means “Dream Diary” in Japanese, is a strange journey through a dozen terrifying dream worlds. It leaves a lot up to interpretation, which is perhaps what’s made it so memorable through the years. The best thing about it, however, is that it’s completely free on Steam.
The Red Strings Club‘s most enduring feature lies in its cast of relatable characters that add a hefty weight to every cocktail poured and bullet fired throughout the game. It asks whether or not the risk truly outweighs the reward and oftentimes ends up in somewhat of a moral gray area as its narrative unfolds, leaving you spellbound in the process.
Shotgun Legend plays the same way it looks. It’s a retro throwback that handles like something straight out of the early days of console gaming, though has enough challenge for you to overlook it’s crude graphical style. Indeed, Shotgun Legend is a tribute to those simpler yet still compelling days of gaming and is definitely worth a look should you consider yourself a veteran fan of the medium.
Iconoclasts features some of the best art that 2018 has seen so far. Coupled with it’s Metroid-inspired design, a surprisingly poignant story filled with twists and turns, and excellently crafted boss fights that’ll test your wit as much as your reflexes, Iconoclasts is a complete package well worth the price of admission.
Candleman: The Complete Journey is a platformer that focuses on quiet self-reflection rather than action-packed gameplay. Its story is touching in all the right ways and leaves an impact on you well after the credits begin to roll in January 2018. The game’s beautiful graphics and effective use of lightning only aid in leaving an impression on you.
Rusty Lake Paradise is a very peculiar game in January 2018. Keeping in line with other Rusty Lake titles before it, fans can expect the same macabre, profoundly disturbing experience they’ve fallen in love with before, this time with crow-faced creatures and a rabbit-eating fly-man thrown in for good measure.
A Raven Monologue is a beautifully illustrated game that follows a bird who can’t speak in any language, including that of his own species. Players are able to interact with townsfolk silently using images, making this brief story compelling if only for the way its narrative attempts to present itself.
Hello Charlotte: Childhood’s End is the third and final episode in the Hello Charlotte series and serves as a satisfying conclusion to all the mad twists and turns that fans have experienced so far. It’s a strangely deep and personal game that’s truly a culmination of the art and mechanics Hello Charlotte has experimented with before. To say more about it would spoil a surreal, unique title like no other in January 2018.
David is an Italian/Latino New York City-based writer whose passions include music, anime, cosplay, movies, bike riding, video games, and just being an all-around nerd. He's always out and about, going to anime and gaming conventions alike across America and posting all of his shenanigans on social media for the world to see. If you bump into him, wherever he may be, don't be shy to say hello!