The RPS Bargain Bucket: A Hit, Man

By Lewie Procter on October 10th, 2009 at 9:33 pm.

It appears that the Atlantic is causing some serious fiscal interference with the internet this week. The waves are disrupting EA’s discount rays, and they can only cut prices in the UK. Maybe global warming is to blame. Still, there are some great deals to be had for both those that say tom-ah-toe and those that say tom-ay-toe. If you want more video game cheap niceties, go to SavyGamer.co.uk.

The Hitman Collection – £6.99/€9.99/$9.99
“From the makers of Kane and Lynch, and Mini Ninjas”, this collection (and indeed Steam) seems to omit Contracts, no idea why. You can either get the collection, or you can buy the individual games at similar discount. This is a series of games in which you play a man who makes hits, as in, killing people. Jim makes the fairly compelling argument that they play more like a puzzle game than anything else. I’ve got a funny relationship with the games, first I tried to play the first one on a PC that should have been good enough to run it, but it didn’t run well at all. Then I bought Hitman 2 from a Blockbuster clearance sale, only to later discover the disc was missing. Then I got Blood Money on the 360, only to find out it is one of a very small number of 360 games that don’t output over VGA (what I use). I think someone doesn’t want me to play them.

Empire: Total War – £14.99/€24.99/$24.99
The latest in the total war series enters the 18th century, and you can recreate the battle of the Boston Tea Party, The Discovery of Australia and the invention of the automatic flour mill. This is the first entry in the series to have sea battles too. I’ve not played a Total War game since Rome, I really enjoyed the campaigns, but not the battles so much, which is a shame because they are hugely cinematic and have a very impressive scale. Aside from resenting the DLCization of the game, how should I feel about Empire? If you can find this retail for cheaper, you can (and indeed have to) register the serial on Steam. RPS coverage here, and demo here.

Cellblock Squadrons – £3.13/€3.39/$5
I’ve not heard of Cellblock Squadrons before, but I’ve done a little research and it won a GOTY award from Game Tunnel, so it is probably worth a look. Also, the developer is called “Super Furious Software”, which I have to give kudos for. It appears to be an indie Wing Commander-esque game about flying a space ship and shooting other space ships. The Impulse coupon “SURVEY-2009″ is still active, but you need to buy something else to cross the coupon threshold. There’s a demo right here, if you think it’s worth evangelising about one way or the other, please do so.

Ishar Compilation and Robinson’s Requiem Collection – £3.74/€4.05/$5.98
GOG have got a pair of collections of games on promotion this week. You get: Crystals of Arborea, Ishar: Legends of the Fortress, Ishar 2: Messangers of the Doom, Ishar 3: The Seven Gates to Infinity, Robinson’s Requiem and Deus. That certainly was a mouthful. These are all Dos flavoured RPGs, from a strange and distance time period know as the early nineties. It being from GOG, you should have no trouble running these on modern hardware.

(UK) Deal of the week
Burnout Paradise: The Ultimate Box – £4.99
It was hard to pick from all the EA games available for this price. Mass Effect, Mirror’s Edge, Red Alert 3 and Dead Space for a fiver are all fantastic deals too. Burnout Paradise won mainly because it is by far the cheapest it’s ever been, whereas those others have been available for around a tenner or less in the past. It’s a driving game where you get to drive fast and smash things. Such things as billboards, barriers, other cars and records. Criterion are an excellent dev, and with Burnout Paradise they have done a fantastic job of pushing forwards online interaction in racing games, created a lovely open world for racing in, and done a great job of post-release support, with lots of lovely new free content added over time. Black 2 please. RPS coverage here, and demo here. Other EA games for a fiver here.

(USA) Deal of the week
World in Conflict: Gold – $4.99
Believe it or not, fact fans, but this is actually an unofficial sequel to the Wes Anderson film “The Royal Tenenbaums”. It’s a fairly large scale realtime tactics game set in an alternate history Russia. There is no base building or tradition resource management. It’s by Massive Entertainment, and is somewhat of a modern spiritual successor to the ground control series. For this next to nothing price, you get the original game and the Soviet Assault expansion pack. Stonking good deal if you ask me. RPS Coverage here, and demo here.

Also of note:
Last week of the rather fantastic D2D games for five currencies sale UK/USA
Perma-price drop for Defense Grid on Steam
10% off Spiderweb software

If that lot’s not enough for you, do check out SavyGamer.co.uk for constantly-updated bargains across all formats.

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114 Comments »

  1. Vinraith says:

    How you should feel about Empire: TW depends on what you want and expect from a Total War game, really. If, like me, you buy them as much (or more) for the mods as you do for the base game, you should feel it’s a horrible move for the franchise advertised by whopping great lies about being the most moddable TW game ever when in fact it’s barely moddable at all because they’ve encrypted most of the files. If you just enjoy playing the vanilla campaign, however, I gather the patches have brought it pretty well up to spec and it’s enjoyable enough on that level.
    *
    Oh, and WiC is set in an alternate history U.S. being invaded by an alternate history Russia, not set in alternate history Russia (at least not as far as I've gotten in the campaign).
    *
    Lots of good deals this week. I picked up WiC earlier, tried the demo for Hitman before concluding it wasn’t for me, and am deeply envious of you UK chaps for having access to Burnout Paradise at that price.

    • LewieP says:

      Bah, I’ll blame my poor wikicribbing on my horrendous freshers flu. In fact, I think it might be some sort of swine variant.

      I’ll bear E:TW in mind, but think I’ll hang on for sub-£10.

    • Vinraith says:

      Blech, I hope you feel better soon. To my thinking that’s a sensible, safe price point for E:TW. I bought it at full price before finding out about the mod-locking (which most attribute to the DLC issue), and would have to say it’s probably the worst purchase I’ve made this year from a price/gameplay perspective. Honestly, I still spend more time playing Rome: TW than any of its successors, much as I like Medieval 2.

    • Alexander Norris says:

      WiC’s multiplayer is what really makes it worth it for me. It’s the sort of thing that if you happen to enjoy FPSes and the occasional game of RTS, you’ll find more alluring than if you really like RTSes. To make this paragraph a little less like gibberish and a little more informative: WiC MP essentially plays like a class-based FPS, and is the only strategy (well, really, RTT) game to do so, which is why it’s worth at least $5 to try it out for the novelty of it all.

      Regarding Empire, and leaving aside TCA’s locking the base files away to make modding the game to the same standards as MII/Rome impossible, I found the combat boring and the continent-juggling hard to follow (but then, I never really was a strategy gamer). I hated the muskets (line up, fire; watch men reload for two minutes; repeat) and the artillery (turning most late-era big battles into a game of running-around-dodging-cannon-fire) and so promptly bought Medieval II, had far more fun, uninstalled Empire and didn’t touch it again. It’s also worth mentioning that there are a number of people out there having significant technical issues and that the latest patches have only made it worse in some cases; that said, when I last played the game (in the two weeks after the last £15 deal), I only experienced a single crash while playing 3-4 hours a day.

      In retrospect, this should have been titled “Bargain Bucket: Damn You LewieP, I’ve Just Graduated And Now I Find Myself Facing An Impermeable Job Market While Sorely Missing The SU Bar’s Cheap Pints.” *shakes fist*

    • BigJonno says:

      My local Asda had a couple of copies of Empire for a tenner, not sure if it was a nationwide thing.

  2. jameskond says:

    To bad most cool stuff is region/IP locked, now love for the european inlanders =(

  3. robrob says:

    I read somewhere that the Contracts thing is to do with unlicensed music? Sounds a bit odd any way.

  4. St4ud3 says:

    And where’s the EU deal of the week? :D

    I’ll get the Hitman Collection. Liked Blood Money, but never played the other ones, so heres my chance :D

  5. Dominic White says:

    For anyone who gets Dead Space (and you should, because it’s great), two things:

    A: Play on Hard mode. Normal is just a bit too easy.
    B: No, it’s not supposed to run like crap, and there isn’t meant to be a full half-second control lag. The Vsync in the game is broken and never got patches. Just go to the in-game options menu and turn it off. Voila, fixed! If you want it back on AND running better than ever, you can use DXOverride (part of the Rivatuner pack) to reactivate it with triple-buffering.

  6. drewski says:

    I’d be all over WiC: Gold were it not for the region locking. Curse you, D2D!

  7. Doctor Doc says:

    If you get to pay Steams euro price then you might be more interested in a good old hard copy.

    http://www.play.com/Games/PC/4-/11314451/Hitman-Ultimate-Contract/Product.html

  8. Doctor Doc says:

    Wait a minute, Steams collection does not include Hitman: Contracts, and that’s the best freaking one in the series IMO! Screw them, get the real collection.

  9. Sir Digby says:

    Oh my, Burnout was a great buy for me when I got it for £15!

  10. Carra says:

    Dead space for 5 pounds, not bad.

    But I’ve never bought from EA store, how is it? Can I even buy games as an inland European? How about the DRM?

  11. Mac says:

    At the EA Store – buy any 2 games for £5 each, and then add Mercenaries 2 and the basket for 3 games = FREE :)

    • Biscuitry says:

      I noticed the “three games free” thing on EA too, and I can’t help but think it has to be a glitch. Take it if you will, but I honestly wouldn’t be surprised if EA start pulling games from people’s accounts or levying retroactive charges when they work out it’s happening.

  12. FP says:

    How good/bad is the EA store wrt DRM / redownloading / etc (ok they’re only £5 but still…)?

    • Tei says:

      I have buy WAR there, and my experience was horrible. Not email with “You have buy this sucessfully”, poor webpage, no panel control to check if the sale was sucessfull (theres a way to know what have you paid, but is really hard to find). But for a very cheap game can be ok-ish… I suppose.

    • alset says:

      Don’t forget the 6 month redownload limit with a premium if you want to extend it. It’s like they don’t want people to buy from them.

  13. Alexander Norris says:

    Bargain bucket, “(Rest of the world) deal of the week: No, Fuck You, We’re Not Interested In Your Money Unless You’re Paying Full Price For Games That Have Been Out More Than A Year” edition.

    • LewieP says:

      I really feel for you guys. As a UKer I know exactly what it is like to get screwed over by any international inconsistencies most of the time, but in the DD stakes at least, you guys certainly get it worse. <3

    • Alexander Norris says:

      The best part is how most of my spare income is still in my UK account but unless I use a proxy, EA won’t let me access the UK store to buy games in English with my UK debit card tied to my UK account. Ever tried paying for something in pounds when your statements get sent to a foreign address? It’s hilarious how confused your average online store will get (and by hilarious, I mean “this is plain stupid and I’d like to spend my money now, please”).

      I could go on a rant about how regionalised online stores are just the big corporations wanting to get all the benefits of globalisation while denying all of their customers the same benefits, but then I’d just sound like a raving pinko commie madman.

    • Caiman says:

      No Alexander, you don’t sound mad at all. Most people don’t care about this because most people live in the US or the UK, but for those of us in Other Countries (yes, they do exist) it’s really frustrating. Not only is my local bricks and mortar store not really selling PC games anymore because it’s all going online, when I go online I find that I’m a third-class purchasing citizen anyway. I see the piracy stats for my country and it’s no surprise: if you get repeatedly shafted by these rules, you’re going to want to break them.

    • Carra says:

      Most people live in the UK or USA? Not really. Europe has a lot more inhabitants than the USA.

      And Germany is one of the biggest markets for *pc* games.

      So I it makes little sense to leave behind main Europe.

    • Vinraith says:

      I think he must have meant “most people on this site” because otherwise yes, that would be absurd.

      I, too, feel bad for the continental Europeans. I don’t understand the logic of excluding a huge market from these things, how is that anything other than pissing money away?

    • Caiman says:

      Yes indeed I was being lazy with my grammar. I’m in Asia btw, so the EA store link directs to that. Ah yes, Mass Effect is still $79.95 for me (about US$65 at current exchange rates) as a direct download. Fortunately I bought it for US$5 at Dubai International Airport a few weeks ago, which is about what it’s worth a couple of years after release.

    • Alexander Norris says:

      @Carra

      They’re not leaving Europe behind, though, because people can and will continue to buy games at these outrageous prices. They’re just making money at our expense, which to be frank is what US publishers have been doing for the last twenty years each time they released games in Europe at full price six months after their US release. It’s not like they’re being dumb; they’re deliberately choosing to milk the golden cash-cow because apparently, while I had my back turn, we Europeans brought back the slave trade and monopolised the spice trade again and now live in gilded cities with diamond domes, earning ten times as much as Bobby Kotick for menial labour.

      @Caiman

      You must be in Oz or NZ, in which case I’m very sorry to hear that. A fair few of my friends and colleagues are Aussies and I know you get shafted worse than we do. :(

  14. Mac says:

    I bought the combo of dead space, mirrors edge and mercenaries 2 – so it may not work for other combos. But free is free :)

    • Krondonian says:

      Wow, I just did this and can confirm it worked.

      …not sure whether to be super happy to have 3 free games, or feel like a dirty thief. I imagine EA will realise soon and take them back, but that’s a big mistake on their part.

  15. Po0py says:

    Aw, heck! What are the chances of Burnout Paradise ever appearing on Steam as a weekend deal anytime soon? Thats just a shame. I want it on Steam! Even at a few quid extra for Steam tax. Still a bargain.

    • Po0py says:

      Upon thinking a little about this. Last week there was a Direct2Drive £5 deal on a load of Ea games. Then this week we get a bunch on the EA store for £5. Chances are Steam might be next. Fingers crossed. I’m gonna wait.

    • Po0py says:

      Ok. Cancl all what I said previously. I somehow, in my drunken staturday night state of mind, managed to buy Burnout Paradisce, Mirrors Edge, Mercerneries and Deadspace all for £4.99. Thats £4.99 for the whole damn lot. What the fuck didi I just do.? Being drunk rocks. I’m fuckign supermanr when I’m drunk. I’m only drinking Bulmers. Wat theh fuck.?

  16. Phil says:

    I live in Bermuda, which most direct download websites consider “rest of the world”, yet I managed to add Burnout Paradise to my cart and get all the way to the “Review order” screen without it telling me I couldn’t buy this. Yes, the price is in GBP, but it doesn’t look like it’s going to stop me buying it (of course it could still complain when I click Submit). Why do you think this is restricted to the UK only, and am I going to have any problems if I press ahead with the order (like it not actually allowing me to download the game)?

    • Phil says:

      Well, I can confirm that despite living in Bermuda I was able to buy both Dead Space and Burnout Paradise from the UK EA store by following the link from the article, even though normally I get defaulted to the US EA store.

      Thanks MMan for that voucher code – made an already great deal even better.

  17. Krondonian says:

    What’s this about free games?

    I too am very interested in the EA deals, but I’ve heard bad things about EA’s download system.

    Regarding Hitman, if you’re only interested in Blood Money, it’s cheaper to go retail in the UK. http://www.gamestation.co.uk/PC/Action/Stealth/~r404790/Hitman-Blood-Money/default.aspx?added=404790

    • Dominic White says:

      The EA downloader software itself is actually pretty good, and they’ve got a ton of bandwidth. I’ve pulled games down at a solid 1.6MB/s, when my line is behaving itself.

      The problem you’ve probably heard is that you’re not allowed to download forever. This is true. They may change the policy sometime, but at the moment, you get one year of access to files unless you pay for their extended download warranty, which puts it up to a few years.

      My advice? Just download it, burn it to DVD and call it a hardcopy.

    • Krondonian says:

      Well followed what Mac said, and am currently downloading Mirrors Edge at 1.9 mbps. Not bad!

      I might be very stupid, but I thought you needed an ISO file to burn to DVD?

    • Vinraith says:

      You’re not creating an install disc, you’re creating a data disc with the installer stored on it.

    • Krondonian says:

      Oh, that makes sense. I was being very stupid.

    • Vinraith says:

      We all are from time to time. :)

    • klumhru says:

      The EA downloader time expiration thing seems to still be bugged. I just opened my confirmation email for buying Mass Effect at the EA store (release day, I’m a Bioware whore, I know), and the download still works when I use the link in the email, despite being way beyond the 6 month limit….

  18. PetitPiteux says:

    Damn, the Ishtars… A gaming ‘madeleine de Proust’, again. But I am not sure they would be playable anymore…

  19. Günter says:

    Hit Man eats, shoots and leaves.

  20. Rob says:

    The EA £5 deals can be bought with a 25% voucher code from http://www.hotukdeals.com and I got 10% Quidco

  21. Miker says:

    I don’t suppose there’s an easy way to purchase UK games from D2D or EA store if you live in the US, is there? Easy and safe, that is. Although I can live without some of the deals, as I’m sure Mass Effect will get a half-off weekend sometime around ME2′s release. I’d love to pick up Red Alert 3 though.

  22. Mman says:

    If you put “VoucherCodes.com25%” in where it ask for a promotional code in the EA store you can get 25% off. So you can actually get those deals for £3.75

    • Mman says:

      Wow, that “three games for free” thing works. Seems it only works with the Dead Space, Mirrors Edge and Mercenaries 2 though, which is too bad as Mercenaries 2 is the only one I don’t own. At least I seem to get the ME sountrack CD with it though.

  23. Mashakosha says:

    Let’s talk about this free EA games thing. Is it legal? By UK law, sure it is. They listed them at the checkout as costing nothing. Is it _right_? Now, that’s a different kettle of fish. Could it possibly be a publicity stunt from EA? Think. How often have you mentioned EA in the past month or so? Not very often, I’ll wager. This might just be a way of them trying to curry favour with those gamers that they’ve neglected over the past few years. Give us your thoughts and comments. I’m interested.

    • LewieP says:

      My take:

      It is definitely legal.

      It is almost certainly moral.

      I think it is unlikely that it is intentional, but it is a definite possibility.

    • Krondonian says:

      I do feel slighty bad, but the fact that I would never have bought Dead Space or Mercs 2 anyway due to bad press means that they have someone interested in their franchise who would never have been before.

      Also, the EA Download Manager is a lot better than I was expecting, with fantastic speeds. I think I’ll go back and get Burnout and Mass Effect now that I have a good first hand experience with it, wheras before I was cautious.

      It’s super-improbable they’d intend to give away games, but it’ll get them more of my money than had they not.

  24. sinister agent says:

    I’ve only played Hitman 2 and Blood Money, but they’re terrific games, endlessly replayable, and I’d be all over that deal even though I have one of them already (and the other on the funsquare) if it weren’t on steam. Although I’d rather nab Contracts as well, but hey ho.

  25. Git says:

    Bah! The site refuses to let me buy Burnout and Mass Effect for actual real money via either CC or PayPal. Ok, EA, Ok, I’ll spend it on beer instead.

  26. Drakkheim says:

    Oh and hey, Gamersate has Risen on sale for $10 off for 39.95 USD (not sure if it applies to you chaps across the pond, but it might since GG are in Stockholm..)

    • Phinor says:

      Nope, good old 49.95€ here. I’m really hating these digital services right now, there are around five games I want to buy from D2D but they refuse to sell them to EU. I want to buy Dragon’s Age from Impulse, but they refuse to sell it to EU. I want to buy Cities XL from Impulse, but what do you know, North America only. I wonder if we ever get borderless Internet or is this crap here to stay..

    • Pidesco says:

      Risen can be bought from UK online stores for around 30 euros.

  27. Wooly says:

    Just played the demo for Cellblock Squadrons, and I was pretty impressed! Then again, I know next to nothing about alienshoots in space, so I might be a bit ignorant. Still, I’m going to pick it up, it’s only $5!

  28. UK_John says:

    Know what this article and comments tell me? That Global Climate Change is not going to be dealt with, so there’s no more than 50 years to finish all the games you have. That the PC games market has about 2 years left and that if you have any investments make sure they are converted to gold before 2020.

    Why you may ask? Well this article and comments just shows the short-termism of the media and consumers. Because let’s face it, neither the article author or any of the comment.writers gave one thought to what this means for PC gaming, and how fire sales like this is a prelude to companies going bust, or in this case, a gaming format.

    To see ETW already well below half price, along with the other ridiculous deals here, that you don’t see in the console market, tells me one thing. PC gaming is in dire straights.

    So get these bargains while you can. Because by 2011 there won;t be mainstream PC titles any more, and you;ll have to rplay the titles from the list above, that you got so cheap without a thought to what it means for the PC games market!

    • St4ud3 says:

      You are a bit negative. There was a Gabe Newell Interview on this site about a year ago, that discussed the whole steam sales thingie.

      A few months after the release sales decline steadily. When steam has a sale for 50% off sales rise about 300-600% depending on the game and since a digital download costs them next to nothing, it would be just lost money, if they wouldnt put up these sales. It’s much harder to get people to download full-size games on a console, because they have extremely small HDDs and places like Steam or the EA store don’t exist.

    • sinister agent says:

      Oh please. As if it really costs £30 – £50 per copy to make a game.

    • Vinraith says:

      UK_John is the Doomsday prophet of RPS. At least once a month, he goes up the mountain and decrees that PC GAMING IS DYING! Considering the sales numbers we’re seeing, and considering the fact that digital distribution allows sales that are virtually pure profit, I suspect he’ll be making that decree for a long, long time.

  29. Phil says:

    I can confirm that despite living in Bermuda, and paying with a local credit card, I was able to buy Dead Space and Burnout Paradise at the discount price by following the link in the article (normally the EA store defaults to the US version for me). If it worked for me, I can’t see why it wouldn’t work for anyone else.

    Thanks MMan for the voucher code – made a good deal even better.

    • St4ud3 says:

      Nope, doesn’t work here, it just defaults to the German main page. Maybe Bermuda isn’t listed in theyre IP tables, so you can shop in every shop :D

  30. Nimic says:

    I bought Empire: Total War on Steam when it first came out, played it for a day or two, and haven’t touched it since. The whole “gun combat” part of the game didn’t appeal to me at all. There’s nothing quite like two armies clashing in Rome or Medieval 2 (or Shogun, bless it), but it didn’t do it at all for me in Empire.

    The Hitman pack sounds good, though personally I’ve only really played Blood Money. I tried the others, but they weren’t as good. Then again, Blood Money is really good. It’s also a game it’s fun to just faff about in for a while if you’re bored.

    • sinister agent says:

      Yeah, I can imagine going from Blood Money would make the others look bad. I was lucky enough to play the second one first, so I can enjoy it as I had no such basis for comparison. I still think 2 is better in several ways – for one thing, you could carry tonnes of weapons and store them for later missions, whereas in blood money there’s no point at all in carrying anything but your stock guns (and most of those are useless anyway because they’ll instantly raise the alarm – in 2 you could dress as a guard or soldier in most missions, so carrying a rifle wasn’t too suspicious).

      It made those moments where you went on a cathartic rampage much more satisfying. As did the silly over the top ragdolls. And that last mission was so great, I must have played it fifty times just to see if I could do it using only the shotgun, only the desert eagle, only the knife, etc.

  31. squidlarkin says:

    WIC sounds awesome, but I’m hesitant to buy a two-year-old game primarily for its online component. (yes, even for $5, I’m poor.) How active are the servers these days?

    • Mashakosha says:

      Surprisingly active. And it’s still a stunningly pretty game, for an RTS. It does have a steep difficulty curve though, especially if you’ve just come from the campaign where your own units can take twice as much fire as the enemy before they go down.

    • Vinraith says:

      If enough people end up buying it we should coordinate some RPS games. I know I’d like a friendly environment in which to learn the online side of the thing, and I suspect I’m not alone.

    • Matzerath says:

      I just bought it, and love it, so count me in for some RPS online, if schedule permits!

    • Alexander Norris says:

      Much like Battlefield, TF2 or other team-based FPSes, WiC requires people willing to use chat (preferably voice chat) in order to communicate and co-ordinate, otherwise you lose and stand there thinking “fucking pubbies.”

      I’ma go make a thread in the Social Club now, and we’ll see if enough people have it for a game or two.

  32. Theoban says:

    I would like to register my complaint against this column.

    This week I have bought the Hitman games, Lucidity and the Monkey Island Special Edition.

    Please, please stop this column. I can’t resist the juicy savings held within. I’m poor enough as it is, without these wonderful, tempting, sweet berries of golden gaming deliciousness hanging in front of my face.

    I’m only human!

  33. Duffin says:

    Mass Effect for a fiver is daylight robbery.

  34. klumhru says:

    Thanks for the pointers on these deals, they’re always nice to get on the weekends. Sadly/Happily I have all these games, except the Cellblock Squadrons (demo downloading).

    For Empire Total War, if you haven’t played any of the TW games, don’t get Empire. In fact, if you’ve played all of them, don’t get Empire unless you have a high pain threshold.

    For me, Rome and Medieval 2 tie it for the best TW titles. I’d recommend M2:TW for newcomers to the series. Play a campaign and then get one of the excellent total conversions. Oldcomers will of course already have Rome:TW, the star of the series in my opinion.

    I only mention this as M2:TW is $19.99 and Rome is $9.99, so both are considerably cheaper than Empire.

    Also, if guns/ships are your thing, just wait for Napoleon: TW, released early next year. It will be practically identical to Empire, but will have Napoleon. And Old Boots. And other guys you might recognize from history class.

    • Mad Doc MacRae says:

      You’re no oldtimer if you pick Rome as the best. Shoggy for the 5 true, ancient purists and Med1 for the rest of the old guard.

      Any other opinion is frankly wrong.

    • Vinraith says:

      I didn’t play Medieval 1, so I can’t comment, but Shogun’s campaign map was pretty pathetic compared to the more sophisticated overmaps of later releases. Rome’s mods alone, however, easily give it the crown IMO.

    • JB says:

      I have to say, I’m shocked at all the hating on E:TW I see on the comments threads. I understand Vinraith’s (and others’) problems re: “most moddable Total War” claims, and I’m still waiting for the multiplayer campaign myself. But myself and a good friend played a /lot/ of Rome back in the day, and a fair amount of M2:TW and Kingdoms. We weren’t entirely sure about Empire to start with, but we’ve been having a total blast playing it. Oh, and we’ve had one crash in abut 100 turns on our current campaign. Also, only one other bug I can think of. It is /very/ different battle-wise to Med2 and Rome, but then that’s only to be expected.

      Anyway, I’m done anti-hating on E:TW now. If anyone else actually likes the game and would like to have a crack at the multiplayer campaign when they /eventually/ release it (it’s looking fairly imminent), then give me a shout!

    • Vinraith says:

      I think a lot of folks were surprised by the differences between melee and musket-line combat, really. I read a lot of complaints about that, but to be honest it’s not one of the things that bothers me about the game. If they’d unlock the files for modding and give us that MP campaign, I’d actually be an ardent defender of the title, because the underlying combat and campaign mechanics are pretty good IMO.

    • Okami says:

      Stating that either Medieval or Shogun are better games than Medieval2 or Rome doesn’t make you look like one of the old guard, but is just plain silly. While both Shogun and Medieval were great games, there’s not a single thing that either one of them does better than their sequels.

    • klumhru says:

      I’m sorry I sounded somewhat pretentious laying down the law of R/M2 supremacy. Obviously only my own opinion is mine to offer. Okami voiced my thoughts on the subject quite succinctly.

    • Mad Doc MacRae says:

      @Okami – for starters, campaign AI is much better in the first two TW’s than the predecessors. Part of the problem is that CA’s eyes are too big for their programmers. But Rome and M2 (and from what I’ve read from actual TW players, ETW) have broken AIs.

      The Total War games were originally about providing excellent tactical battles with a simple but not-too-shallow campaign backdrop to give the battles context. Shogun exemplified this, and M1 improved on it with increasing depth in the campaign (and without sacrificing AI or functionality to do so). Rome was a mess at the start (stupid AI, tactical battles were just run over everything with cavalry, particularly ahistoric even for Rome). Several patches, an expansion or two, and complete reconstructive surgery by the modding community you have an ok game (but one I never found compelling anyway). M2 was more of the same, though the tactical battles were better (but the campaign worse!).

      If CA had kept to the old campaign style, perhaps they wouldn’t be facing a revolt in their fanbase.

      (But you probably found the tutorial campaign too hard so this won’t mean much to you)

  35. Heliocentric says:

    the 3 free ea games seems to be dead now. :(

  36. The Dark One says:

    Valve also has one of those four-pack deals for Borderlands, but of course that involves making sure everyone pitches in for their share of the price.

  37. Heliocentric says:

    from the ea site

    Rule #1 for mercenaries: EVERYBODY PAYS.

    http://eastore.ea.com/store/eaemea/en_GB/DisplayProductDetailsPage/productID.106153100

    Hm…

  38. MD says:

    Man, I can’t even follow the EA links without them detecting my location and redirecting me to their Asia-Pacific site. On the plus side though, I can get the Burnout Paradise Ultimate Box for the low low price of $79.99! (£45)

    Wait, that’s not good news at all!

  39. Inigo says:

    To be honest, I prefer Shogun and Medieval 1 to the later full-3D games, if only because the unit pathfinding wasn’t pants-on-head retarded. Unfortunately, they are now completely unplayable thanks to driver incompatibilities. Thanks Nvidia!

  40. biscotti says:

    Despite being in Spain I managed to grab the free EA bundle through Tor.

    I notice as well that on the US Steam site Borderlands is $44.99 whereas on the UK site it’s £26.99. This means the UK is getting it at a saving of £1.16 over our American cousins (at current exchange rates). I don’t think I’ve ever seen a price difference on Steam in the UK’s favour before.

    • Tei says:

      I have TOR too. I suppose since the shop will be a HTTPS conexion you are almost safe, but I don’t know how the “man-in-the-middle” attacks may affect TOR. Do you know If Dragon Age is in localized to spanish?

    • biscotti says:

      A quick check of the EA store shows that you can pre-order Dragon Age with Español as your idioma. So I guess the answer to your question, Tei, is yes.

    • Tei says:

      I have tried, to check if is available.
      I follow this link:
      http://eastore.ea.com/store/eaemea/es_ES/DisplayProductFinderPage&productID=129421400

      And it result on a page with the “Antes de poder añadir Dragon Age:™ Origins a tu cesta, debes hacer las siguientes selecciones:” text, a image of the box of the game, and nothing else.

      I suppose something broken,since I can’t continue. EA don’t want my money enough to make a decent webpage. Thats what you get wen you let a company be driven by the marketing department: good marketing, but you can’t buy, because the technical thing is bloated and broken beyond repair.

      ….
      My findings about avoiding IP Bans using TOR:
      http://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2007/12/maninthemiddle.html

      It seems, yes, man-in-the-middle attacks are possible. But will need to forge new certificates. So If you open other browser, and compare the certificate of the browser using TOR, with the one not using TOR, you can tell if is forged. Much probably a MITMA certificate will be self-signed anyway…

      So, while is possible to avoid the IP banning, theres still the total crappyness and braindead corporate culture of his digital shop.

      Anyway, the game will unlock in november. 20 for EU guys, about 8 for other people. So theres not need to rush this one. It may be wiser to wait for Steam or Impulse to offert this one.

    • Tei says:

      Also, If you understand spanish, you must watch this hilarious review for a arcade game:

  41. Heliocentric says:

    MD, I think you might be interested in buying a bridge off me.

  42. Alexander Norris says:

    For those interested, I’ve gone and made a thread in the Social Club for people to exchange their Massgate profiles and organise some online World in Conflict.

    It’s also got a fairly long and detailed intro post that explains part of the multiplayer game for people who’ve never played it.

  43. ArtyArt says:

    No mention of Bullet Candy Perfect? How sad. Charlie has revamped and remodeled the old Bullet Candy and is giving it away for the modest price of 1$ plus howevermuch you’re willing to spend. It’s a worthy upgrade that plays and looks way better. I happily paid some more money for it (even if I just recently bought the original Bullet Candy). Go get it here:

    http://www.charliesgames.com/wordpress/?page_id=203

  44. CMaster says:

    They seem to have fixed the free ME/DS/MC2 bug by now.
    However I still have all 3 of them available to download, along with Burnout Paradise. Thing is, ME is ht eonly one I actualy wanted anyway – I already own Dead Space, while Mercenaries 2 holds no interest to me.

  45. Mashakosha says:

    The EA store bug was fixed at 3am GMT this morning. Nothing more to see from this particular subject, until they start revoking games. To paraphrase from their Ts & Cs, the most they can do is ask the people who took advantage of the glitch to pay for them. If they decline, then they can have their games taken away. If they accept then obviously they get to keep them.

  46. MrTest says:

    Mercenaries 2 is a laugh. Blood Money and World In Conflict are the gems on that list, though.

  47. CMaster says:

    Just to add to all those thiking about WiC – it’ a very good game. The small-tactics multiplayer are where it really shines, however the SP component is pleasantly cinematic and well worth $5 on its own.

  48. KindredPhantom says:

    Duffin said:
    Mass Effect for a fiver is daylight robbery.

    Nah, Mirrors Edge at £3.74 is daylight robbery. (Five pound from the EA store plus the 25% discount code.

  49. bill says:

    I really want to play mirror’s edge. But it ALWAYS seems to be region restricted.

    on the plus side, i found out there at least IS a ea japan store, and they do have a few english games. On the minus side, not much i want and not any real bargains.

    But, it’s a step forward I guess. As far as i know it’s the first real official pc download store in japan. and that it supports english versions at all is a bit of a shock.

  50. Adamos says:

    Hitman sounds tempting
    Asides those games i found sins of a solar empire on impulse for 14euros and honestly the best purchase i did for years ( i’ m gonna also buy the entrenchments add-on )

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