Familiars.io is a very retro-styled mini-MMO about catching monsters and battling, and it's now heading to Steam. It's completely free to play, with the developer noting they don't need funding for it they just want more people to give it a try as they do it for fun.
"It's a compact monster-catching fest in an online multiplayer world. It also has some optional hard stuff for people who like a challenge." — Clay Loam
More about it from the developer:
What's it like to play?
- 1 battle = 1 levelup, and the max level is 15. I don't want to waste your time with rpg grinding
- with only 20 Familiars in the game, you can max-out and understand all the familiars in the game within a few hours
- ... and then you're ready for the hard stuff
- find hidden portals to other dimensions, where you must manage your familiars' HP and your potion supply in a slew of battles against fairly smart CPU opponents
- or, if you want, fight other players you meet in the world to test your mettle
What else is there to like?
- it's extremely easy to pick up, play a bit, and put down
- the only way to communicate with other players is by pressing the "howdy" button repeatedly, or running around in circles
- I think the soundtrack is pretty nice
- it's free btw