People that don’t play indie games simply because they only want games with excellent graphics are people that miss a lot of good games. The indie gaming scene brought us many memorable games, including Papers Please and Hotline Miami.
But these games are just aberrations in the world of indie games. The rest of the indie scene is filled with low-quality games that are just gray copies of more successful releases. New indie games are boring, and they offer nothing new and exciting. When you go to Steam store, you can find hundreds of indie games that are utterly dull and uninventive.
For instance, we got Mercenary Kings, a platformer game in which you go on missions to kill enemies and build up your base and upgrade some stuff. The design of the game is pretty, but the game is repetitive, and it doesn’t bring anything new that would wow anyone. The game has a minuscule number of level designs and after around 30 minutes you see everything the game has to offer. This is a wrong way to make a game, and people should realize that. The same can be said about Strider. That is just another platformer game, whose developers tried to make the profit due to the popularity of this genre.
So, what is the problem here? The problem lies in the simple way through which someone can release their game to a wider audience. If you create a game you can send it to Greenlight, and when some people (developers Facebook friends) approve it, the game hits the Steam. Developers that have no new ideas found this as an easy way to gather funds by only making a copy of a popular indie game and changing it slightly.
The evidence for this is everywhere. For example, Trine manages to grab the attention of many, and suddenly you have dozens of platformer games all over the internet. The Bastion manages to captivate many with its fascinating story and all of a sudden you got a ton of isometric RPG-like indie games on the Steam.
Then there is the pixel art. Several pixel art games became popular and all of a sudden a whole wave of indie developers started using pixel art in their creations. You still have quite a few pixelated games that are exciting, innovative and fun. But you also have hundreds of pixelated games that are failed copies of those that became popular. This retro style that uses pixel art is outdated, and there are limits to everything. An example of a failed retro style game is the Shovel Knight who brought the NES style of pixel art to the PC.
We shouldn’t forget games that are plain and stupid, like Rock and Grass Simulator. Those games tried to jump on the train whose origins rested in Goat Simulator. Goat simulator was a game that was stupid, but it was created to draw Youtubers and reap profits from the hype those people generate.
Those ugly copies tried to replicate that, and they failed, like a dozen of other simulators as well.