Those on the hunt for fresh gaming freebies have a fine selection of indie delights to contend with this week courtesy of the Epic Games Store, with A Short Hike, Mutazione, and Anodyne 2 all currently available to download for the princely sum of zero pee.
Developer Adamgryu’s A Short Hike, which is where we’ll start, does exactly what it says on the label, sending players on a laidback traipse across a delightfully constructed world, all in a bid to reach its mountainous summit – not that there’s any great hurry to meet that goal. Instead, it’s a game of freeform meandering (with a touch of climbing and gliding thrown in for good measures), revelling in the curious characters and simple pleasures you discover on your way.
“The stuff you’re doing in A Short Hike tends to be very simple, but delivered with lovely writing and characterisation,” said Christian Donlan in his Essential review last year, “Each time I load in, I come out of my little cabin at the bottom of the mountain and feel a powerful sense of freedom, of a mystery calling from every corner. And that’s the joy of A Short Hike, I reckon: magically, even with most of the game revealed to me, I still feel like this is my first time with it.”