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You can't jump in the brutal, beautiful world of Unworthy

In the Indie GIF Showcase, we dig up the best-looking new and upcoming indie games and explore what makes them special. Are you a developer with a game to submit? Use this form  

Unworthy is an exploration-driven 2D action game with a twist: you can't jump. That might sound like 'a racing game where you can't accelerate,' but developer Alekz Kuzmanovic Games has come up with some clever workarounds for this considerable handicap, not the least of which are good old-fashioned ladders—which the game's aggressive enemies are evidently eager to knock you off. This sets the tone for Unworthy's ostensibly hardcore combat, which features a tried-and-true focus on dodging and stamina management.  

The many ladders connecting Unworthy's levels are especially interesting because they aren't always obvious. Some blend into the game's layered background, which uses variable scrolling speeds to atmospheric effect, while others are outright invisible until you shine your lantern on them. 

This is complemented by the subtle gradient of its almost one-bit pixel art. There's surprising depth to its world, and its silhouetted sprites find character through sharp animations. I particularly love the jingling chains in the shaky foreground of this boss fight, to say nothing of the dancing torchlight in the backdrop. 

Unworthy will launch on Steam (opens in new tab) in early 2018. 

Austin Wood
Austin Wood

Austin freelanced for PC Gamer, Eurogamer, IGN, Sports Illustrated, and more while finishing his journalism degree, and has been a full-time writer at PC Gamer's sister publication GamesRadar+ since 2019. They've yet to realize that his position as a staff writer is just a cover-up for his career-spanning Destiny column, and he's kept the ruse going with a focus on news, the occasional feature, and as much Genshin Impact as he can get away with.