“Not until the creation and maintenance of decent conditions of life for all people are recognized and accepted as a common obligation of all people and all countries – not until then shall we, with a certain degree of justification, be able to speak of humankind as civilized.” – Albert Einstein
Ukrainian Indie Games Bundle Overview
The Ukrainian Indie Games Bundle is a selection of games from ten Ukrainian developers all with Ukrainian localisation. The bundle cost is fifty percent cheaper than the combined retail costs of the individual games which is a hefty saving for the player. Additionally, and more importantly, any profits made by the bundle will be donated to Ukraine’s Armed Forces, humanitarian and volunteer organizations as well as helping the developers themselves.
Released: March 2022
Platforms: PC and various consoles
Available on: Steam
Ukrainian Indie Games Bundle Top Picks
Field Hospital: Dr. Taylor’s Story
Field Hospital: Dr Taylor’s Story is a text-based bureaucratic detective game about making hard choices. In a similar style to Papers, Please, players must study patients’ information and reads their stories, decide who to treat and who to refuse, and face the consequences.
There is limited information supplied about patients but players can request a limited amount from HQ each day to acquire medical reports and dossiers. There are also a limited number of beds each day meaning that players must really take in all the information in order to make effective decisions and save as many lives as possible.
The narrative design is interesting as players are able to explore the backstories of individual patients whilst also conducting an investigation into an overarching situation. The interconnecting stories make for an engaging and satisfying narrative overall. The game has a simple 2D aesthetic with a slight cartoon feel and muted, moody colours. The soundtrack is subtly melancholy and is the perfect accompaniment to this game, the gentle droning and guitar string plucking is emotive in a very understated way.
Overall, Field Hospital: Dr Taylor’s Story is a slow-paced but involving game that will keep players hooked and wanting to save more people. The different stories and the war setting make for a poignant experience that is accentuated by the audio and visual elements. In fact, this is the Ukrainian Indie Game bundle highlight for me personally!
Titan Chaser is essentially a walking simulator except with a car. The player’s job is to scout for the wandering giant beasts that threaten the town and drive them off using light, there will be a new specific task each night. It is a very low-pressure game with no need to manage resources or even do the work if sightseeing is preferable!
As the realistically depicted misty and moody landscapes are explored the protagonist’s story and character are revealed through her commentary. The lighting is especially atmospheric and helps to build an ominous and slightly oppressive environment. The music is plentiful and features a varied selection of lo-fi tracks and radio snippets thanks to a mixed tape provided by the previous owner of the vehicle.
Titan Chasers certainly lacks a bit of finesse and players will almost inevitably get the car stuck on something but it has an intriguing and unique concept. The audio and visual elements that bring the world to life are highlights of the game and encounters with the various impressive beasts are especially mesmerising. It is primarily a relaxing exploratory experience, which it does well, it may have a somewhat niche appeal but I would recommend it to fans of walking simulators and more experimental games.
Players take on the role of Sir Lootalot in this retro ‘Zelda-lite‘ adventure game and battle their way through dangerous dungeons made up of beautiful pixel art. The electronic music is also varied and makes great background noise for the game type and is befitting of the different dungeons that are available to explore.
The game starts off with a slower pace and eases the player into the experience with a nice difficulty curve. It also boasts precise and responsive controls and versatile combat mechanics that make Knightin’+ a pleasure to play. There are also traps, puzzles and enemies to overcome whilst collecting loot and gaining new abilities in this classic dungeon crawling adventure! The puzzles can be a little tricky at times, and there are some difficult enemies and boss fights that will prove challenging.
Loot and abilities are gained in a variety of ways, players can spend coins dropped by enemies with vendors that are dotted throughout the dungeons or solve puzzles and find keys to open chests of loot. Some items can provide upgrades or new skills such as a ring that grants the ability to dash.
Kinghtin+ is a relatively short game and can be completed in 3-4 hours but it has plenty to offer, provides a satisfying level of challenge and is a lot of fun. This welcome addition to the Ukrainian Indie Games Bundle is very easy to recommend.
More Great Titles in the Ukrainian Indie Games Bundle
Taimumari: Definitive Edition
Taimumari is a retro-style platformer that aims to provide some nostalgia! Players tale on the role of Himari, a young female wizard who must traverse the ages in order to restore the balance in time. It offers five vast and diverse levels, a range of abilities, a character levelling system and three difficulty settings and is sure to provide a good challenge alongside its fantasy narrative.
Castle of No Escape 2
Castle of No Escape 2 is a retro action-roguelike set across 216 rooms of procedurally generated enemies and obstacles that must be overcome by the player as they collect necessary artefacts. The game features a selection of differently playable characters with more unlockable through the defeat of mini-bosses. There are also some novel nostalgic nods such as a PAL mode and NES-esque password saves.
Mad Nords: Probably an Epic Quest
Mad Nords: Probably an Epic Quest is a retro parody RPG. Players will explore a vast fantasy world as one of 9 playable characters, completing zany quests and fighting a range of tricky foes. There is a silliness to the game that is matched in the minimal but charming cartoon style artwork as well as the wonderfully eclectic NPCs.
Dead Dungeon is a challenging 2D platformer boasting a clean and vibrant aesthetic and energetic chiptune soundtrack. Reminiscent of Geometry Dash it is colourful, upbeat, provides a satisfyingly tough challenge and is a great addition to the Ukrainian Indie Games Bundle.
Developer: Rex Pex Games
Released: 10th February 2022
Available on: Steam
Cosmic Collapse is a retro-style space scrolling shooter in which players pilot a spaceship and fight hordes of enemies and defend the galaxy! It features a total of twenty-seven levels, three ships, a range of collectable bonuses and in-game currency. It lovingly pays homage to arcade games of the past and I’d recommend it to those looking for a little nostalgia.
The God Unit
The God Unit is a first-person physics-based puzzle game set in a world that is imminently pre-apocalyptic. Players must puzzle through over 42 levels in a range of difficulties by manipulating the mass of different objects alongside more familiar and traditional puzzle mechanics. As progress is made narrative snippets reveal the protagonist’s story as well as why the world might be about to end!
Zombie Derby: Pixel Survival
Originally a mobile game, Zombie Derby: Pixel Survival sees players attempt to survive the zombie apocalypse from behind the wheel. The main objective seems to be crushing the undead and ploughing through obstacles in one of a range of upgradeable cars. However, despite the angry music, the violent premise of the mechanics is softened by the colourful low poly art style and overall aesthetic. This is an ideal game for a bit of slightly gory silliness!
Overall, this small but mighty bundle includes some fantastic indie games from small studios and solo developers from Ukraine. It features titles from a range of genres and will have wide appeal. It is raising money for an incredibly worthwhile cause and is very easy to recommend.
Want to read about some other charity bundles? Check out these articles:
10 of the Best from 900+ Games in Charity Bundle for Ukraine! – Last chance to buy Racial Justice and Equality Bundle from itch! – GDC Relief Fund Bundle on itch.io – Top Picks