“Heaven knows we need never be ashamed of our tears, for they are rain upon the blinding dust of earth, overlying our hard hearts. I was better after I had cried, than before, more sorry, more aware of my own ingratitude, more gentle.” – Charles Dickens
Sometimes I want to play something cheerful or uplifting, sometimes I like something that will get my adrenaline going, other times I want to game that is going to give me all the feels! That’s why I have compiled this list of ten fantastic indie games that are sure to bring a tear to your eye, or maybe even get you sobbing like a baby!
Indie Games That Will Make You Cry!
Inked: A Tale of Love – Full review here.
Inked: A Tale of Love is an award-winning story-driven puzzle game in which players take on the role of the Nameless Hero who must set out on an adventure across a beautifully hand-drawn world. As each puzzle is solved, the highly emotional narrative is slowly unravelled and the protagonist becomes one step closer to their lost love.
When the Past Was Around – Prologue review here.
When the Past Was Around is a beautiful & emotional game about love, loss & moving on. It follows 20-year-old Edda & her companion through a series of disjointed and puzzle-filled rooms made from tough but endearing memories. This game is incredibly moving and really captures what it feels like to permanently lose a loved one and how the feeling of loss never truly leaves.
Welcome to Elk – Demo review here.
Welcome to Elk is a charming adventure game set on a fictional island full of true stories and tall tales, and inhabited by the people who lived them. The basic premise of the game is to explore the island of Elk and listen to the backstories of the eclectic bunch of people who inhabit it. Their emotive tales are based on dramatic real-life events and tragedies adding a layer of poignancy possibly unachievable by pure fiction
Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons – Full review here.
Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons is a unique and emotional experience from Swedish film director, Josef Fares and developer Starbreeze Studios in which you must guide two brothers on an epic, fairy tale journey. The mechanics and narrative work in tandem to create a very tangibly emotional game in a way that is truly unique. It also has a soft but detailed art style and a lovely minimal soundtrack that really adds an extra layer of sentiment to the game as a whole.
A New Life – Full review here.
a new life is a short but stunning example of a visual novel, cleverly weaving its narrative and subtly pulling on heartstrings to elicit a genuine emotional response from the player. The game claims to be a classic love story of meet, marry, grow old; however, the branching dialogue trees and consequences mean that things do not always work out as planned. At its centre, the game is a touching portrayal of love, loss and loneliness that may well make you cry, but it’s worth it!
The Stillness of the Wind – Full review here.
The Stillness of the Wind is a relaxing and meditative survival game about life and loss. It centres around Talma, who, having watched the land around her change and the people she loved move on, remains in solitude on her farmstead. It is the perfect suggestion for anyone wishing to relax and sink themselves into a game that is engaging but without urgency but still packs a punch emotionally.
Still There – Full review here.
Still There is a well-mixed cocktail of genres, the game is a psychological adventure executed in a point-and-click fashion, featuring some mind-boggling puzzles and an engrossing sci-fi storyline. The game also manages to implement both the immersive narrative and the satisfying puzzles with an element of humour and silliness that provides contrast and make the deeper moments even more poignant. This game is sure to stir some emotions.
To the Moon – Full review here.
To the Moon is a relatively short, narrative-driven, non-combat, adventure. It tells a sentimental story in which two doctors travel backwards through a dying man’s memories in order to artificially fulfil his last wish. The game touches on a range of difficult subjects such as death, loss and managing life with developmental disabilities but does so in a heartfelt and informed way whilst managing to include an enjoyable hint of silliness.
Curtain – Full review here.
Curtain is a short, free, narrative experience about Kaci & Ally, two queer women in a Glasgow punk band. It dives into their home life and explores the subtleties of their unhealthy relationship. The game is an award-winning piece of interactive fiction and features a garish and psychedelic pixel art style that feels as uncomfortable as the subject matter.
Before I Forget – Full review here.
Before I Forget is a short, narrative exploration game in which players step into the world of Sunita – a woman living with early-onset dementia. Wandering from room to room, she examines faded postcards, scribbled notes, photographs, and more in order to rediscover and piece together her past and hopefully make sense of the present. Its stunning artwork, emotive storyline, relatable narrative, audio elements and empathy combine to make a full and well rounded and moving experience.
More Games That Will Make You Cry!
If you’d like a fuller and constantly evolving list of games that will make you cry you can check out the Indie Hive curator list of the same title on Steam!
If you enjoy the Indie Hive listicles you might also like to read these:
Upcoming Indie Games we’re Looking Forward to in 2022! – 10 Uplifting Games for Self Care and Mental Wellbeing – Four Time-Sinks For When You’re Stuck At Home!