Umihara Kawase: running + jumping + fishing rod = "rubbering
Cave Story: made by one person over several years, this
platform/action/shooter rivals the best SNES games, in terms of
gameplay, story, graphics, music, etc..
Colorful Notes: really awesome style, and a great/simple puzzle game
A2K and Z-Lock: abstract shooters with minimal vector graphics
http://homepage2.nifty.com/isshiki/a2k.zip <--download link
http://homepage2.nifty.com/isshiki/z-lock.zip <--download link
Spout: 1-bit graphics, particle-tastic abstract cave-flier
Warning Forever: abstract shooter made of endless boss fights (hence
the name); the enemy ships are genetically evolved based on how you
destroy them, and are drawn using procedurally generated+assembled
Every Extend: a weird and yet addictive combination of puzzle and
shooter, apparently coming soon to psp
<--download link (it's sort of hard to find)
Kenta Cho/Aba games.. this guy is amazing! of special interest for you
might be his game "Noiz2sa", which has super-abstract graphics. but..
really, check all the games out, they're each unique and awesome.
Also, many of the games (such as parsec47) use BulletML and a random
number generator to produce always-unique waves of enemies,
enemy-shapes, bullet-patterns, etc..
Wirehang Redux: almost no graphics to speak of, but INCREDIBLY
Frontline: yet more unclassifiable and addictive stickman action
UFO: strange sumo-wrestling with spaceships.
the way that they handle shooting is pretty cool (the aim direction
constantly rotates 360deg, so to "aim" the player just has to fire at
the right time; this simplifies the controls a LOT while adding a
totally weird and new dynamic to the game)
Seiklus: abstract stickman adventure game
Puchi: another tiny stickman game, this was a huge inspiration for N,
Super Bubble Blob: another game that inspired N, more simple yet
Klass of 99: remake of an old ZX Spectrum game, this game is AWESOME,
the tiny pixel-y graphics are cool and the game "genre" is totally
unique.. a puzzle/adventure/simulation
Iteration Games: a lot of good, abstract, retro-y games
FlapFlapFlap: AWESOME example of simple-yet-stylish graphics, and
Orbital Sniper: made for a 48h game contest
Medieval Clash: another genre-defying game (other than "strategy" in
general) with tiny pixel-y graphics and awesome gameplay
Fallen Angel Industries: another great freeware group, these guys have
lots of great retro-yet-contemporary games; check out Commando, Seige,
and Tango Strike
Brainchild Design: more great freeware; jump-n-bump is highly
(note: you might want to download the windows version of jump-n-bump
since the originals are DOS-based and hard to get running:
WW1 Medic: a bizarre yet pretty cool game
Free Lunch Design: you've probably already heard of icy tower, but
just in case.. get it!
Binary Zoo: very fun, very abstract-looking games
Euphoric Rush/Chris Street: "zone runner 2" is another game we played
a lot of while making N
Ikiki: this guy has made several really cool, weird platforming
games.. here's one. others (google them) are called "bimboman",
"teppoman", "teppodon", and "100ponknock"
Legend of Shadow: retro super-ninja action
Super Secret Ninja: tiny stickman stealth platforming
Helix Games: cool freeware platformers, "jumper two" and "dim" are two
you should definitely check out