Free Points: Introducing Avant-Garden, an Itch.io Collection of Surreal & Unique Games!

One of the best resources for good, free games is definitely Itch.io, the Steam for indies. Today I’m introducing my Avant-Garden collection on Itch.io, a collection of surreal, engrossing, and sometimes just lovably weird games that I love. And most of them are point-blank free!

Free Points is a series of weekly(ish) free game recommendations. The games may range from the most surreal of Alt Games to the most traditional of platformers; the only requirements for a Free Points game is that they’re free (real free, not free to play!) and very much worth your time.

What Is Avant-Garden?

Avant-Garden started out as “Cool Weird Games”, a collection I’d add every…cool, weird game I found into! I frequently use Itch.io to find interesting experiences for my YouTube, and after removing games from my “to review” queue, I liked to add them to another “worth playing” collection for others to see.

Sacramento, a game in Avant-Garden
Like Sacremento here, many of these games are brief, but leave a lasting impression.

After a while I grew a bit tired of the old name, and I’ve noticed some of my favorite game developers don’t appreciate the simplicity of calling their games “weird” in general discourse—though I certainly don’t mean it as a negative myself! It is a bit frustrating to see fantastic, unique games reduced to “look at this weird crap I found!” on various big YouTubers’ channels, after all.

Looking for a better word, I came upon a fun pun and Avant-Garden was born. I find it encapsulates the feeling of a quick, meditative romp that many of these games offer, and matches the experience I have of cultivating and adding to the collection. I adore finding new games to add to my garden.

Avant-Garden as it appears on itch.io
A sample from the gallery, which shows metadata, thumbnails, and descriptive blurbs. The icons show which platforms a game can be run on; itch.io can have Android APKs too, not just PC games!

Not absolutely everything in Avant-Garden is free; many are Pay What You Want, some are premium, but most can be played free of charge. Itch.io collections helpfully list the price if any.

Why Play Avant-Garden?

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