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This coffee bean will wake you up and then kick your ass

And some spooky skeletons to get October started

a bean jumping back while trying to shoot down a helicopter with a hand gun Image: Killer Bean Studios
Ana Diaz (she/her) is a culture writer at Polygon, covering internet culture, fandom, and video games. Her work has previously appeared at NPR, Wired, and The Verge.

Indie developers continue to push the envelope with the wild and weird worlds we get to play in. A lot of the joy of this column comes from seeing what developers create, when left to their own devices — and this week it’s a third-person shooter where you’ll take on the world, fighting as a coffee bean who barrels headfirst into James Bond-level action.

We have dangerous coffee beans and more in Cool WIP, Polygon’s weekly roundup of eye-catching clips, and screenshots of works in progress. Each week, the Polygon staff scours the internet for the most interesting games still under construction, to give you a sampler of the coolest up-and-coming projects.

This week we have a proper kick-off into October with a spooky open-world adventure, a gardening sim that you can play now as part of Steam’s Next Fest, a Jet Set Radio-esque third-person fighting game, and a hardcore racing game that’s actually just really cute.

This coffee bean will wake you up by kicking your ass

This bean has got some pep in its step (and also two guns). Killer Bean is a third-person shooter where you play a coffee bean. A clip posted by its developer, Jeff Lew, shows the bean fearlessly approaching a fully armored tank in a vast, natural environment. You gotta appreciate the spunk behind this one! As of now, the developers plan to release Killer Bean in 2022. You can follow updates on the developer’s Twitter account.

A spooky RPG that reminds me of Majora’s Mask

Lovely Hellplace is creating a game called Dread Delusion — a spooky open-world RPG where you explore floating islands and encounter creatures like a goth girl wearing a black cloak that floats over the school. A short clip of the game shows off its world, including a giant looming moon in the sky that reminds me of The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask. The game is coming “soon” according to its Steam page and you can wishlist it now.

Play a demo of this peaceful sim on Steam’s Next Fest

The Garden Path is a beautifully crafted game that looks like an aged-up world from a children’s storybook. A GIF from the game shows one character you’ll encounter in the game, Greet Reed, a giant humanized stalk of celery. The developers at Carrotcake describe the game as a “slice-of-life sim about the joys of gardening.” The developers will release the game sometime in 2021, and you can play a demo of it as part of Steam’s Next Fest right now.

Oh no! Another new Jet Set-esque indie game

Nukefist is a duo making a Jet Set Radio-esque, third-person fighting game called Genokids. A short clip shows the game’s fighting in action where the character pulls off a slick combo along with a dodge. Although the developer says there’s a lot of polishing to do, it already looks pretty snazzy with the character’s bright blue sword and super dramatic attacks. There’s no release date on this game yet, but you can follow the developers' work on their Twitter account.

The cutest racer for hardcore speedsters

The developers of Circuit Superstars advertise their upcoming game as atop-down racer built by racing fans, for racing fans,” but also its toy cars are just dang adorable. One of the developers, Alberto Mastretta, showed a GIF of a small toy car rolling over from its roof back onto its wheels. Mastretta says this is an “important mechanic” for accurately simulating the car, but it also looks cute struggling to get back up. Original Fire Games is developing the game for Xbox One and will release the game on March 5, 2022. You can check out more information about the game on its Steam page.

The next level of puzzles.

Take a break from your day by playing a puzzle or two! We’ve got SpellTower, Typeshift, crosswords, and more.