There are many words to describe Thomas Happ’s indie masterpiece, Axiom Verge. This metroidvania came into the gaming world by storm and blew gamers away with its unique approach to the genre and its beyond excellent soundtrack. It pulls off nostalgia and innovation in such a way that no other game before it was able to accomplish. This is an indie title that will forever be remembered, because it deserves such attention. With its long-awaited sequel making its way to the hybrid console some time this year (Hopefully!), I thought it would be fun to dive in and remind ourselves why we are so excited for Axiom Verge 2.
My name is Jason, and this is your Nindie Spotlight for this week – Axiom Verge!
The Brilliance of Axiom Verge
Let us remember right off the bat that this game was created, developed, stylized, and composed by one man: Thomas Happ. For those unfamiliar with game development, this is an incredible feat alone, but when you are able to create arguably one of the greatest indie games of all time by yourself… that’s unheard of.
Axiom Verge is ultimately modern nostalgia. This is a masterfully made metroidvania title that equally feels like the legends of old, such as Super Metroid or Symphony of the Night, while also taking the genre to the next step in style.
You play as Trace, a scientist running a lab experiment in New Mexico, and things go awry when an explosion goes off and knocks him out. He awakens inside an egg-shaped machine on the alien world of Sudra, and then a disembodied voice leads Trace to The Axiom Disruptor, a powerful gun. Trace explores Sudra, using the gun to protect himself from massive monsters that attack him in the name of “Athetos”, trying to figure out what is going on.
The Bosses of Axiom Verge
Deciding on only a couple areas of Axiom Verge to focus on is a challenge in and of itself, but it would be criminal to not mention the bosses. As amazing as every aspect of the game is, the bosses stand on their own pedestal and make an already intense game feel even more so.
As you collect more weapons and powerups, the bosses also graduate and get bigger, badder, and more aggressive. Early in the game, the bosses are quite manageable for the most part, but some of the later bosses provide a great challenge and they look amazing in the process.
There are ten bosses in total, and none of them feel like the last. As you progress in the game and begin discovering what is happening in the world, the bosses and their names begin to make more sense. It is a bizarre and abstract approach to storytelling, but it is fascinating and results in one of the coolest endings to a game ever.
OH. MY. GOD. As a lifelong lover of music, I have to admit that we have been spoiled with some unbelievable gaming soundtracks over the years. Game soundtracks like N++ and Celeste are constantly played on my Spotify, but the soundtrack to Axiom Verge is one of the most intense and satisfying in decades.
The way the driving beats and aggressive synthesizers perfectly blend with the theme of the game and what is happening on screen is profound. Again, the fact that the same man who programmed this title also composed this soundtrack is something else.
Seriously, begin the playlist of Axiom Verge and let it play through. Wear some headphones, close your eyes, and let your mind wander. Even if you have never played the game before, the audio paints the perfect picture, and you will feel like you entered an unknown world ready for you to discover.
Like I said, it is a struggle to only focus on a couple key areas, because Axiom Verge is a masterpiece. It won me over with its brilliantly abstract story, its nostalgic and modern approach to the metroidvania genre, its wide range of powerful weapons and items, its glorious pixel graphics, its maddeningly challenging boss fights, and of course its top-tier soundtrack.
This is honestly not just one of the best indie titles ever but genuinely one of the greatest games of all time.
BUY THIS GAME NOW IF YOU HAVEN’T ALREADY AND LEARN WHY SO MANY GAMERS CANNOT WAIT TO PLAY THE SEQUEL. You will absolutely not regret it.
There is your Nindie Spotlight on Axiom Verge. Join us next time for another brief look into the Nintendo Switch’s best Nindie titles. What are some of your favorite indie games? Let us know in the comments below! Thank you for visiting Nintendo Link. Happy gaming, everyone!
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My name is Jason Capp. I am a husband, father, son, and brother, and I am a gamer, a writer, and a wannabe pro wrestler. It is hard to erase the smile on this simple man.