Animal Well could be the best indie game of the year

Animal Well could be the best indie game of the year

Ever since Animal Well was announced in January 2023, the game has attracted a lot of attention. Much of it is because this is the first game published by the indie game publishing company Bigmode, founded by the famous YouTuber videogamedunkey, Jason Gastrow, and his wife Leah.

As Gastrow stated in a video announcing his company, "I think we're going to bring insane value to the table and the bottom line is: help good games succeed and help them continue to succeed into the future." Co-founder Leah Gastrow said their ultimate goal was to "put together a catalogue of unique, high-quality games that can be enjoyed for many years." So there were high expectations from fans regarding the quality of their first project.

On May 9, 2024, Animal Well was officially launched on PlayStation 5, Windows, and Nintendo Switch, followed by an announcement/interview video on videogamedunkey's YouTube channel on May 10:

Animal Well is a Metroidvania video game developed by Shared Memory and published by Bigmode. The player controls a blob and explores a labyrinth filled with animals. Animal Well revolves around exploration via nonlinear platforming and puzzle solving. The developer stated that the map is "not nearly as big as some games, but it aims to be much denser."

In an interview with the game's sole developer, Billy Basso, he stated that the game uses a custom engine designed by himself. Animal Well is rendered in different layers, using various lighting techniques, fluid simulation, and particle effects to give the 2D art a sense of depth. The engine also has very low latency, allowing for precise platforming.

Upon release, Animal Well received "universal acclaim" from critics, earning a Metacritic score of 91, and Overwhelmingly Positive on Steam. Richard Wakeling from GameSpot highlighted the game's unique take on traditional items, visual design, and neon-soaked world, awarding it a score of 90 and noting that the game "might look antiquated and familiar at first glance, but this well is cavernous and unpredictable." Rebekah Valentine from IGN awarded Animal Well a 9/10, describing it as "a beautiful, multi-layered puzzle box that’s both fun to simply play around with, and an utter delight to slowly crack open."

With 20 hours of unique gameplay and an extremely small game size of only 40MB, Animal Well promises to be a highly worthwhile experience for those who want to immerse themselves in a unique Metroidvania world. So what are you waiting for? Try out Animal Well now by using our price comparison tool.

  • Official website : Animal Well
  • Categories : Action , Adventure
  • Editor : Bigmode
  • Developer : Billy Basso
  • Mode(s) : Solo
  • Release date : May 9, 2024
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