Adorable indie games are nothing new. Titles like Tiger and Squid’s 2015 watercolors adventure Beyond Eyes, Southend Interactive’s button-eyed puzzler Ilomilo and the forthcoming Zelda-like Secret Legend – which replaces the usual armored adventurer with a tiny, bushy-tailed fox – are just a taste of the projects that point to a growing wave of digital plushies from small developers that you could spend days wading through on Steam, Xbox One and PSN. Moblets, due in 2018 from Rebecca Cordingley, is yet more proof that charm is trending.
Unofficially crowned game of the show by a host of attendees during its debut at October’s Day of the Devs – a mini E3 for Indies in San Francisco – even the curators from indie publisher and developer Double Fine were singing its praises. As Cordingley prepped almost single-handedly for the show, she admits her nerves got the better of her.
“I was completely convinced that everyone would hate Moblets, that everyone would say that it was crap,” she says.
It’s not, of course. It’s got monster collecting, farming, and toylike visuals that wouldn’t look out of place in a children’s book. What makes it stand out from all the other weird and wonderful indies out there? Killer mechanics, gleaned from some of the most fondly remembered and successful Nintendo games ever – like Pokémon and the classic RPG Harvest Moon – wrapped in a world that charms without feeling gimmicky.