Sometimes, we just need a new game to get excited about! Especially with the rise of cozy gaming and the spotlight being shone on the need for more diversity in gaming, new games can be super refreshing. Here are some cute cozy games by indie studios set to release in 2022 (or very early 2023), with a little bonus game at the end!
1. Spells & Secrets
Spells & Secrets is a roguelike indie game by Alchemist Interactive which lets you live out your wizarding school dreams at the Academy of Greifenstein! The story of this game is simple: there was a disaster, and now some of your classmates are missing. You must look for your lost peers by exploring the castle-like school. You have to solve puzzles, defeat magical creatures, and experiment with new spells.
The gameplay for Spells & Secrets seems quite straightforward. You get to play around with your spells and explore creative ways to use them while getting to progress within the castle. Every floor also comes with its own list of optional quests for more experience points! You can level up your character by collecting experience points that you can use to upgrade your character or buy new spells during your forays into the castle. During your dungeon (castle) crawling, you can also find money with which you can buy potions or grenades.
Spells & Secrets can also be played online with a friend in local co-op! This means that you can cast spells on your friends and get up to fun shenanigans together! This game’s release is planned for Summer of 2022 on Switch and Steam! I think I might try to convince a couple of my friends to get it…
To find out more, you can visit their Kickstarter HERE, or add Spells & Secrets to your wishlist on Steam HERE.
Aka is a hand crafted open world adventure RPG by indie studio Namra Games. It’s about a red panda who retires to his friend’s island after his homeland was devastated by a war. It features an sweet, cozy open world play style and calming gameplay with naps, gardening, and decorating as its main mechanisms.
At its heart, this is a game about finding inner peace, especially after having been scarred by traumatic events. Aka features gardening, construction, and relaxation, as well as a few yet to be defined minigames. Its quest system is designed to be completed at your own pace so you can explore Aka’s four islands at your leisure!
To find out more or help fund Aka, you can click the link HERE (link goes to its KissKissBankBank crowd funding page). To add it to your wishlist, you can visit its Steam page HERE! Aka is set to release sometime between Summer 2022 and Spring 2023 depending on their funding!
3. Critter Crops: Mystery of Mullery Mansion
Critter Crops is an adventure rpg and farming sim by the women-led SkyReach Studio. In this adorable yet spooky game, you play young Sylvey, who has been banished from her hometown for being a witch. You move into an old, haunted mansion in the abandoned Mur Mur Town to start your new life. You soon realize that not everything is quite right in town, and you set off to explore the island with the help of your Critter Crops! Sylvey’s magic helps you grow unusual crops: little critters that can help you explore the island!
As a witch, you need a Grimoire, so you get to choose from 3 different books to help you learn spells from different schools of magic. As the game progresses, you get to know your Grimoire on a more personal level. You also get to make friends with other outcasts around the island and invite them to join your town! According to some of the images, it also looks like there is a cute messaging app to keep in contact with your newfound friends (and maybe access new quests)!
Critter Crops looks super adorable. I love the hand drawn style; it makes the game so unique and gives it a personal touch you don’t see often in games. Critter Crops is set to release by the end of 2022. If you want to support its creation, you can find it on Kickstarter HERE, or add it to your wishlist on Steam HERE!
4. Ages of Cataria
Ages of Cataria is a town management sim with a little twist: it runs in real time, and the focus is not only on building the best village, but getting to know and shaping the lives of your villagers! Villagers live life spans of 7 real world weeks. Instead of just assigning them tasks like in other management sims, they also have unique personalities so each villager will need special attention!
Ages of Cataria is also (optionally) multiplayer, so you can trade with your friends in other villages around the world. Your village can domesticate animals and even find rare mythological creatures, build unique buildings, improve your villagers’ skills through minigames, and explore the lives of your villagers through text-based stories!
Third Pie Studios’ vision sounds like the perfect game for me. What do you think? You can find out more about Ages of Cataria HERE (link goes to its Kickstarter). To add it to your wishlist, you can visit its Steam page HERE! Ages of Cataria will also be available on Switch! Ages of Cataria is currently set to release in June 2023!
5. A Garden Witch’s Life
A friend of mine told me that this game is the most “me” game he’d ever seen. A Garden Witch’s Life, by Freetime Studio, begins with a premise not unlike many other cozy favorites: You’ve lost your job and moved from the city into a a small town. Your new home? An old witch’s house.
You settle into your role as the town’s new resident witch, and get to work gardening, collecting resources, making potions, and befriending the townspeople. A Garden Witch’s Life features adorable art and a whimsical world with an ancient mystery to explore. The NPCs look super lovable too, and the game emphasizes that it’s okay to sometimes take a break!
I’m pretty excited about this game. A new world to explore! Plus, you can pet the animals!!! You can find out more about A Garden Witch’s Life HERE (link goes to its official website). To add it to your wishlist, you can visit its Steam page HERE!
Planturi! This game is actually a student thesis project, and won’t be released on Steam as far as I understand, but it will be available on itch.io! Planturi is a game in which you take over your late parents’ flower shop and unravel the mystery around their deaths. It has a strong environmentalist stance, and features elements such as crafting, gardening in your greenhouse, and repairing your parents’ shop, which was destroyed by a mysterious explosion. With an intriguing storyline, adorable art, and engaging gameplay, Planturi really seems like it’ll be a 10/10!
You can support their Kickstarter HERE, or visit their itch.io page HERE!
Let me know what you think!
I hope you’ve found some games to get excited about over the coming year! Let me know in the comments if you’re interested in any of these games!