The Steam Next Fest 2023 may be over, but some of the fantastic demos we’ve seen this year have stuck around.
2023’s Steam Next Fest was a massive showcase of indie gaming, and featured some early looks at very promising upcoming titles.
Below are 5 of our favorite Steam Next Fest titles whose demos are still available. We hope you enjoy:
Inspired by both Wario Land and Pizza Tower, Antonblast is a fast-paced 2D platformer where you dash uncontrollably through levels at a breakneck pace.
Featuring two playable characters, Dynamite Anton, and his coworker Annie, you’ll move through levels blowing up everything that stands in your way, learning the stage’s layout while dashing towards the end, and then trying to beat the clock when returning to the beginning of the level.
Antonblast differentiates itself from Pizza Tower by having some unique twists, like layered stages in which the player travels between the background and foreground to make their way around obstacles, as well as a much higher emphasis on racking up combos.
Antonblast is a great title to try out if you are still hungry for more Pizza Tower. The game clearly doesn’t hide its inspirations but does its best to still be unique and original.
Antonblast is set to release at some point in 2024, and will be available on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Microsoft Windows (You can play the game’s demo right now Steam).
4- Yellow Taxi Goes Vroom
With visuals inspired by low-poly classics, such as Mega Man Legends, Yellow Taxi Goes Vroom is an arcade game where you play as a wind-up taxi cab. The game is at its core a 3d platformer, but with a unique twist.
In Yellow Taxi Goes Vroom, the player can’t jump, and instead has to rely on ramps and dashes to gain momentum and launch themselves into the air.
The game is an ultra colorful adventure where you are always going fast and trying to pull off the most insane maneuvers to reach your goal in the most creative way, feeling like a souped-up mix of Super Mario 64 and Crazy Taxi.
Yellow Taxi Goes Vroom is a fantastic title for those who enjoy retro collect-a-thons, featuring lots of secrets, a great sense of humor, and a chaotic need for going fast.
Yellow Taxi Goes Vroom has no release date yet, and will be available on Microsoft Windows (You can play the game’s demo right now on Steam).
Balatro is what happens when someone manages to combine the thrill of poker with the randomness of roguelikes, making for a dangerously addictive game.
In Balatro, players go through regular games of poker, where they have to reach a certain score by playing the best hand they can. The twist is that the player can hold five different joker cards at once, all of which will multiply your score in some way.
The game manages to tickle that part of the brain that loves seeing numbers go up, and has just the right amount of randomization to be both a fun roguelike and poker simulator.
It’s incredible that the developers behind Balatro managed to make poker somehow even more addictive, but without compromising the core rules and structure of the game.
Balatro is a great title for those who enjoy the thrill of seeing numbers go up, as well as those who just want to play a few quick poker matches without any stakes involved.
Balatro has no release date yet, and will be available on Microsoft Windows (You can play the game’s demo right now on Steam).
2- Rabbit and Steel
Rabbit and Steel is a multiplayer bullet hell game, which seeks to simulate the party experience of fighting bosses in MMORPGs.
It’s impressive how far Rabbit and Steel goes to emulate your usual MMORPG boss encounters. The game goes as far as to feature a set of skills, which benefit from being rotated properly, as well as movement mechanics that MMO players should be used to by now.
Bosses will place tethers on players, force them to move inside of safe areas, do massive screen-wide attacks, and even bind a player’s movement to a single axis.
The game manages to mix genres expertly, featuring fights that wouldn’t be too out of place in something like World of Warcraft or Final Fantasy XIV, but without compromising its bullet hell gameplay.
Rabbit and Steel is a fantastic game for those who want to coordinate as a party and take down difficult bosses with challenging movement mechanics, essentially emulating an MMORPG in small scale.
Rabbit and Steel is set to release at some point in 2024, and will be available on Microsoft Windows (You can play the game’s demo right now on Steam).
1- Nine Sols
Nine Sols is an ultra-violent metroidvania with a heavy emphasis on parrying and retaliating against your enemies.
In Nine Sols, we play as Yi, a cute-but-deadly hero who seeks to slay the 9 gods of his world, after a fateful encounter that left him gravely wounded.
The game is deeply rooted in Asian folklore, both in its story and visuals, and manages to expertly mix a cyberpunk aesthetic with themes of Taoism.
Nine Sols is a game for those who enjoy quality metroidvanias with fantastic art directions. It’s a deceptively violent title with deep philosophical themes, and despite its short demo leaves quite an impression.
We actually enjoyed Nine Sols‘ demo so much that we dedicated an entire preview to it. You can read our more in-depth preview for the game right here.
Nine Sols is set to release in early 2024 for PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, and Microsoft Windows (You can play the game’s demo right now on Steam).
Well, there you go, those are our recommendations for games that managed to stick around after the Steam Next Fest 2023 showcase wrapped up. We hope that you are as excited as we are for these upcoming titles, and that you enjoy getting an early look at these fun games.