Top Underrated Games of 2022 You Need to Play Now

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We’ve all heard of or even played some of last year’s biggest games like Elden Ring or God of War Ragnarok and looked forward to the promising new Zelda, but there are countless other games you may have missed.

In this article, we list some lesser-known games from 2022 that are definitely worth checking out. Keep in mind that this is a partial list, and there are tons of interesting games not mentioned here. 

1. Redout 2

Platform: PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, Switch, and PC

For fans of classic hover racing games like F-Zero and Wipeout, Redout 2 fills the void left by Nintendo and Sony. With winding, gravity-defying track designs, incredible speed, boosting mechanics, and the ever-present threat of exploding, this racer should not be overlooked. The graphics are stunning, pushing the limits of the current generation of consoles. The game’s developer, 34BigThings, said, “We wanted to create an experience that takes players back to the golden age of arcade racers while adding our own unique touch.”

2. Tinykin

Platform: PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, Switch, and PC

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Tinykin is a 3D platformer reminiscent of Crash Bandicoot, Spyro, and Banjo-Kazooie. Playing as a tiny character, you must navigate an ordinary home where everyday items become massive obstacles. The colorful creatures called tinykin assist your character throughout the game, providing a unique gameplay mechanic. The game features vibrant graphics and an engaging story that keeps players hooked. “We wanted to create a game that evokes nostalgia while still feeling fresh and innovative,” said the developers at Splashteam.

3. Midnight Fight Express

Platform: PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, Switch, and PC

Midnight Fight Express is an action-packed, gore-filled isometric beat ’em up with an in-depth combo system and varied-level design. Use environmental weapons like chairs, knives, and guns to take on rooms full of goons and test your fighting skills in this underrated action game. The graphics are gritty and stylish, immersing players in a dark, dangerous world. In an interview, Jacob Dzwinel, the game’s creator, said, “I wanted to create a game that feels like the best parts of classic beat ’em ups but with modern gameplay mechanics and visuals.”

4. Arcade Paradise

Platform: PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, Switch, and PC

Arcade Paradise combines sim management with old-school arcade action. Manage a laundromat while enjoying over thirty games inspired by arcade classics. This unique combination will have you sinking hours into this overlooked gem. The game’s graphics perfectly blend retro and modern, capturing the essence of the golden age of arcades. “We wanted to create a game that would appeal to both fans of management sims and those who miss the days of pumping quarters into arcade machines,” said the developers at Nosebleed Interactive.

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5. Vampire Survivors

Platform: Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PC, Mac, iOS, and Android

Vampire Survivors offers simple mechanics and an intuitive play style, creating a rewarding game loop. Control a character who attacks automatically as you move them around the screen, timing your attacks to survive against hordes of enemies. Progress and earn upgrades, ultimately unleashing a barrage of projectiles and weapons. The low-poly overhead graphics style 

lends perfectly to this experience. Developer Poncle stated, “We wanted to create a game that is easy to pick up and play but with a surprising amount of depth and replayability.”

6. The Wandering Village

Platform: PC, Mac, and Linux

The Wandering Village is a unique city-building simulation game that takes place on the back of a giant, wandering creature. Players must balance building their village, managing resources, and keeping their colossal host healthy. The game features stunning graphics and an innovative concept that sets it apart from other city-building games. Developer Stray Fawn Studio said, “We were inspired by the idea of symbiosis in nature and wanted to create a game that explored the relationship between civilization and its environment.”

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7. Unpacking

Platform: PC, Mac, Switch, and Xbox Series X/S

Unpacking is a zen puzzle game that involves unpacking boxes and organizing the contents within various living spaces. With a minimalist art style and a calming soundtrack, Unpacking offers a relaxing gameplay experience. “We wanted to create a game that captures the oddly satisfying feeling of organizing and decluttering,” said the developers at Witch Beam.

Why Some Games Become Overlooked

With so many high-quality games released each year, it’s inevitable that some titles will become overlooked. Limited marketing budgets, the dominance of major game franchises, and the sheer volume of games released all contribute to lesser-known titles struggling to gain recognition.

The gaming industry could do more to promote these hidden gems by highlighting them in digital storefronts, showcasing them at industry events, and giving them more coverage in gaming media. Additionally, gamers can support lesser-known titles by sharing their experiences and recommendations with friends and on social media platforms.

Conclusion

As Will Wheaton states in the 2014 documentary (on Prime Video) Video Games: The Movie, “Video games vastly differ from every other kind of media,” and that’s why they’re loved. With an increasing number of quality studios releasing great titles, it’s easy to become overwhelmed.

While high-profile games like Elden Ring, God of War Ragnarok, and Hogwarts Legacy are undoubtedly worth your time, don’t overlook hidden gems like the ones listed above. Last year was a fantastic time to be a gamer, and this year promises to be just as exciting. Discover more thrilling titles and enjoy the diverse world of gaming. By seeking out and supporting lesser-known games, you’ll enrich your gaming experience and help ensure that innovative and unique titles continue to be developed and find their audience.

Don’t forget to check out our reviews of indie games like Kandria and The Entropy Centre for more hidden gems that deserve your attention and support. Happy gaming!

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