It Begins: The Steam Autumn Sale

By Nathan Grayson on November 21st, 2012 at 9:00 pm.

And hey, look who's back. It's those guys!

You’d think I would’ve figured this out by now. Every year, Steam hosts one of its wallet-eviscerating sales right around American Thanksgiving (or, as it’s known to many of you, Thursday), yet I consistently fail to budget the necessary amounts of money or time for its incredible bounties. One reason for this might be that it’s impossible. Indeed, it would require setting aside all the money in the world and forever, respectively, and I don’t have either of those things. Alas. But good gravy, these are – as ever – some terrifyingly enticing deals. Can you say Darksiders II for 66 percent off? How about Walking Dead at 50 percent? Anybody want to give me a loan? And, er, immortality?

To kick things off, Valve’s got XCOM going for $33.49, Walking Dead for $12.49, Darksiders II for $16.99, Age of Empires III for $9.99, Terraria for $3.39, and Magic the Gathering: Duels of the Planeswalkers 2013: The Subtitlening for $4.99. That’s less than a dollar per word in its title! What a steal.

There’s also a heap of steeply discounted indie games on offer (Legend of Grimrock for $7.49? Yes please) and roughly a billion other games that have had their prices slashed, but aren’t listed on the front page in any special way. So that’s inconvenient. Also, publisher bundles don’t appear to be part of the package this time around. Valve has, however, upped the number of flash deals by quite a lot, and physics-based metal slugger Intrusion 2 for $3.39 and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic 2 for $2.49 are probably things you should jump on.

There’ll be new deals each day until November 26th – which is roughly 27 seconds before the inevitable Steam Holiday Sale kicks off, thus dooming us to lives of poverty, squalor, and totally awesome explosions for all eternity.

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122 Comments »

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  1. Beanchilla says:

    I’m hoping natural selection 2 goes on sale! I want to try it before I buy it for 25 bucks but I’d spring on it if it goes on sale.

    Bought Jagged Alliance 2 though! It seems pretty cool.

    • ZIGS says:

      Unlikely, it just came out

    • Squishpoke says:

      Natural Selection 2 is well worth the $25.

      Just pretend that it used to cost $40 and just went on sale for 40% off.

      • Moraven says:

        $19 if you get in on a 4 pack.

      • hamburger_cheesedoodle says:

        Yes indeed- NS2 has its share of problems, but it is still an incredibly fun game. And the best part is, because it’s an old-school game development team, they’re continuing to support the game with patches for performance, balance, new content and new maps for $0 dollars. That’s pretty cool.

    • Zanchito says:

      NS2 is really fun, I can recommend it without hesitation at the normal price (which is already way cheaper than most games).

      • Yosharian says:

        Isn’t it just another online shooter? I got plenty of those already

        • Faxanadu says:

          Nope, it’s a real-time strategy game (ala StarCraft) combined with “just another shooter” – and more than that, your opponents don’t have guns – they’re aliens. (Or you are, depending on your taste.)

  2. Taidan says:

    Hmmm. Maybe if I get around to finishing the last 150 unplayed games I have left over from previous sales, and get through some of those games I’ve picked up during recent Indie Bundles, I mights stop by and have a look.

    Wait, a digital copy of KOTOR II for less than £2? Ker-ching!

    • Syra says:

      OH DAMN YOU WHY’D YOU HAVE TO GO AND POINT THAT OUT NOW I’M BUYING MORE GAMES WITH A LIST OF LOTS OF GAMES TO PLAY AND A MAJOR EXAM IN THREE WEEKS :<

      • Voronwer says:

        Please not that KotOR I is equally on sale.

        • Bhazor says:

          It is also terrible compared to Kotor 2.

          • mouton says:

            Not really. Just not as good.

          • Voronwer says:

            I disagree. I like both games equally.

          • Narzhul says:

            I disagree, it was too post apocalyptic that it no longer felt anything like a Star Wars game. if it was another IP, I probably would’ve liked it more. Also, there was only 5 seconds of Bastila. Such heresy.

          • Yosharian says:

            0/10 must try harder

            KotOR 1 is one of the best RPGs on the PC, even if it isn’t groundbreaking in terms of writing it’s a very well-made game and fun as hell to play.

            (And I’m a die-hard Obsidian fan)

          • Premium User Badge

            Cinek says:

            Yosharian – lol lol lol. That’s all I can say. I’m quite die-hard RPG player and never would put KotOR as best of the best PC RPGs. It’s definitely one of best console RPGs, but on PC? I doubt it’d even hit top-10 on my list. It’s good, well made game with very decent story, but let’s not cheat ourselves: So are numerous other RPGs. Meanwhile it got loads of gimmics, idiotic design decisions (which obviously don’t work on PC) and other crap that puts it roughly to a Skyrim level (ok, maybe it’s bit better then Skyrim, but only a little bit).
            KotOR 2 was a very decent game as well, and once you stop looking on it as on a sequel of original KotOR you’ll see that in many, many ways it exceeded it’s precursor being also an excellent, solid product, especially once you install the restored content mod (after that I could argue that besides main storyline in exceeded first KotOR in every respect).

      • yanko44 says:

        Time to cast HOLY WATER!

      • Taidan says:

        Pshh, those exams will be over and forgotten soon enough, but a great gaming experience will stay with you for a lifetime…

    • Shuck says:

      Yeah, this is a serious problem. Based on the rate at which I finish games, and given how many I’ve picked up in Steam sales and various indie bundles, I’ve calculated that I can start buying new games approximately 20 years after I’m dead.

      • Noburu says:

        Pretty much this. At this point I have over 150 games on Steam. I have installed maybe 1/3 and played 1/4 and finished hardly any.

        • AngoraFish says:

          I currently have 382 games in my Steam library, but otherwise the percentages are pretty much the same…

        • adamantium says:

          Hehe I know that, 1280+ games for me, all installed and i think ive passed maybe 20 of them :(

    • zind says:

      The safest way to approach Steam Sales is with a well-curated wishlist. I try to avoid looking at the front page when it comes time for me to “shop” and instead just look for things that are sufficiently cheapified on my list.

      • Shuck says:

        Well dangit, that doesn’t help – everything on my wishlist is on sale, almost all at 50% off or more.

        • Gnoupi says:

          50% is not a trigger, most games will hit 75% sooner or later. That’s when you buy without thinking.

          • belgand says:

            Indeed the smart way to deal with one of these sales is to keep said wishlist and then regularly check whenever new discounts are offered to see if your wishlisted games have changed in price. If they are not yet at 75% do not buy them. If they go down to some odd price like 66% during a flash sale or such you might want to buy them or have the patience to wait until a future sale when they go lower. On the last day of the sale then go back and evaluate whether you think there will be a better deal in the future (e.g. is a sequel coming that might see the entire line discounted? Is the game fairly recent?) and then purchase all those games that never saw a deeper discount. It’ll still be there at the end, but you can’t take back the purchase when you see it offered for less.

      • ramirezfm says:

        The safest way to approach Steam sale is with a stick. A very very long stick.
        And preferably no Internet connection.

        • Shuck says:

          Finally! The voice of sanity.

        • Noburu says:

          Either this or dont participate at all if you have ANY money. I constantly find myself saying ooo thats SOO cheap who cares if I dont NEED it.

        • Premium User Badge

          jezcentral says:

          Fortunately, I’m on holiday in Barbados, where the internet connection is as reliable as a pre-launch Molyneux promise. I may have to wait until the Xmas sale.

      • pertusaria says:

        Yeah, wishlist… that’d be the thing that seems to have been wiped in a random Steam update, wouldn’t it? :S

        (Yes, I know this isn’t the place to gripe, will file support ticket in the morning.)

        • Narzhul says:

          You can access the wishlist through your profile, or just plain http://steamcommunity.com/id/name/wishlist

        • Dances to Podcasts says:

          It’s still there, just harder to find for some reason. I tend to use a game that’s already on there, since it has a message saying ‘already on your wishlist’ with a link.

          • LionsPhil says:

            Look on your profile, right hand side, just above the screenshots thumbnail.

            No, I don’t know why they seem to be removing links to it, given the increased focus on social stuff, gifting, and past Summer/Christmas sales about “fill in a wishlist and you might win games from it!”. It seems like it’s good juicy demand data and reinforcement for people to spend money with Steam buying games for their friends.

          • Premium User Badge

            jezcentral says:

            Or get the mobile app. It’s laid out very nicely, amd you can’t miss the wishlist on it.

  3. Stupoider says:

    Gods and Kings on sale over at Amazon, needs a US billing address.

    It’s at $7.49 and the Mac Download (which is the discounted one) registers on Steam as a PC version too. Cheapest I’ve ever seen it, snapped it up in a jiffy.

    I’ve also heard Dark Souls is going on sale there tomorrow, for $15.

  4. Drake Sigar says:

    By Grabthar’s hammer, what a savings.

    • Premium User Badge

      Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

      Internet marry me.

    • trjp says:

      Weeeee have been studying your heestorical documentssss….

      Awesome film, utterly and totally excellent…

  5. DeFrank says:

    Capsized: $2.49
    Defender’s Quest: $7.49

    That’s 10 bucks well spent. You’re welcome, everyone.

  6. mooken says:

    Also, Mass Effect 3 for $12, Dishonoured & Skyrim both 50% off at GreenManGaming.
    Deus Ex Collection for $11 at GamersGate

  7. Melliflue says:

    I think GamersGate are having a sale too. At least in Europe they are.

  8. AngoraFish says:

    Thankfully, as a result of previous Steam sales, I now have every game ever made already. This season I’ll be saving a packet by not having to buy anything new!

    • ShineyBlueShoes says:

      But what of the games that came out between then and now?

    • derbefrier says:

      you say that but we all know its futile. I said that during the summer sale, a week later I had 5 new games I still have not played much of…

  9. djbriandamage says:

    Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords for $2.50!! It already cost you more in electricity to read that title on your PC than to buy this brilliant game!

    • Cytrom says:

      It’s probably the best game on sale today. A real classic.

  10. ShineyBlueShoes says:

    Remember, as usual don’t buy anything not on special until the last day. In fact because the winter sale will be coming in 4-6 weeks if it’s not a featured special wait until the last day of that sale unless you just have to have it right now.

  11. Daleof says:

    Critter crunch is €1.49 (-75% off) and Snapshot is €4.99 (-50% off). Also Serious Sam: TRE is 99c (-75% off).

  12. Mr. Mister says:

    Intrusion 2: in a nutshell: Awesomeness with a positive exponential growth each level. Refined in Russia.

    • Warduke says:

      Been waiting for that one to go on sale.. purchased!

    • grundus says:

      Wasn’t sure about it but I am now, thanks person I don’t know on the internet 2k12! I value your opinion.

      • Mr. Mister says:

        Me too! We have a lot in common, being persons we don’t know on the internet!

  13. The Tupper says:

    Quick question, folks: I love Minecraft, was a bit underwhelmed with Spelunky so, bearing that in mind: do youze think I’ll like Terraria? It’s on sale.

    • DeFrank says:

      It’s a bit simple. If you’re feeling adventurous try Cortex Command. :)

    • Randomer says:

      Terraria is awesome. It hits all the same buttons (and pushes them harder) as the adventuring/exploring part of Minecraft. If building is your thing, you might not like it – I found myself extremely put off from building anything in Terraria (apart from practical dungeoneering structures like ledges). But the exploring/hack’n’slashing/treasure hunting aspect is superb.

      • The Tupper says:

        Sounds good, Randomer. I’ve bought it – thanks for the advice.

        Without wanting to open a can o’worms, I have an XBox pad and it seems like the kind of game where that would be useful: any thoughts on the pad vs keyboard?

        • Mazza says:

          In my experience, Terraria is not a game you could feasibly play with a gamepad. Pretty much everything apart from moving your character is done using a cursor.

    • Didero says:

      You may want to hold off on Terraria and wait for Starbound. Terraria isn’t being supported anymore, and Starbound is basically Terraria 2. Far more extensive, better thought out, and I’m pretty sure one of the Terraria devs is working on it too. There’s no release date yet, but it shouldn’t be too long anymore.

      • Fiatil says:

        It’s worth noting that it’s not being supported in the sense that the devs released two massive content patches for their $10 game and declared that it was complete. You’ll definitely get your $3.50 out of the content that’s there, and tons more if you’re into it.

    • Yosharian says:

      Terraria is a great game.

      This is coming from someone who first looked at Terraria when it came out and said “LOL MINECRAFT RIPOFF ITS ALMOST CERTAINLY SHIT”.

  14. JoeGuy says:

    Skyrim was €30 earlier before the sale and now it is €33 on sale? That’s quite messed up tbh.

  15. pakoito says:

    I’m looking to trade some of my games for stuff in the sale: http://pastebin.com/QD1rm6cU

    NOT A BOT, and that’s really a pastebin.

  16. MondSemmel says:

    Wow. I just noticed Puzzle Dimension now only costs 2.5€ regularly, and it is even 75% off.
    At that price, I highly recommend _everyone_ who likes puzzle games buy this.

  17. Warduke says:

    Hmmm… my entire wish list seems to be on sale… Curse you Steam!!

    • Premium User Badge

      Llewyn says:

      Yeah, that caught me by surprise too. Thought I’d check it just in case any of them were reduced and basically they all are. My feeble willpower is cursing my rampant curiosity at the moment.

    • grundus says:

      Oh my, I feel your pain. Only two aren’t discounted; Hitman: Absolutely (which will have to drop some before I pick it up) and FTL, which is surprisingly not discounted. There’s still time I suppose.

      I think I need to stick a post-it on my monitor to remind myself that I want to replace my sim rig’s Samsung 226BWs (which are older than me in technology years) with 23″ Dell Ultrasharps. A mere £450 upgrade… Might help curb my spending.

    • Vurogj says:

      I do hope there is room in your boat for extra people, as that is the state of my wishlist as well. I was frankly surprised and a bit horrified. I also have stuff I bought in the summer sale that I haven’t started yet, mutter grumble.

  18. Arcanon says:

    After KOTOR I, I never got around to play Sith Lords…..it’s MINE!!!

    Also, new Magic Decks, yay xD

  19. P4p3Rc1iP says:

    Just picked up KOTOR 2! Sweet! :D

    Edit: It also appears the store servers are down at the moment…

  20. Moonracer says:

    Every Steam sale I tend to look at the top sellers and think “at this point everyone has Terraria by now, right?”

  21. Lanfranc says:

    I’d recommend the Tropico Trilogy package on Steam, 75% off at €5, or just the Tropico 3: Gold Edition for €3.75.

    And Gamersgate has the Deux Ex Collection, also 75% off at €10.50 for another 9 hours.

  22. Ninja Foodstuff says:

    Wish they would show which ones are SteamPlay. Kind of annoying to have to click through each offer to find out.

    • TillEulenspiegel says:

      I got a real non-hackintosh Mac for the first time recently, and I was surprised that Steam does nothing to tailor the storefront for your OS. There’s a “Mac Games” category, but that’s it. Maybe this will change after the Linux version goes public.

      It’s worth noting that a Mac version of Torchlight II is in progress, and presumably the Steam version will be updated to reflect that when it’s finished.

      • Ninja Foodstuff says:

        Well at least they fixed big picture mode so that there’s a Mac OS filter now.

        Previous sales have always had the SteamPlay icon, it almost seems deliberate that they don’t have it this time. Maybe it’s one of their “experiments”

  23. Premium User Badge

    dangermouse76 says:

    Rage has now reached worth the risk pricing… lovely. And XCOM on sale great. My mates been bugging me about DayZ for ages…..cool. Withcher 2 and stalker always get told to try those out, brilliant.

    Ah shit I’m poor again. WTF man !

  24. secretdoorinvisiblewall says:

    English Country Tune for $1.24 is nice.

  25. The Tupper says:

    This is the first Steam sale where I have some money saved in my ‘wallet’ to buy stuff.

    Does anybody think there’s a chance X Com could be further reduced later on, or is a 33 per cent off with a game this new sound about all they’ll do? As I say, my funds are already with Steam, so other discounts by other retailers aren’t of interest.

    • Lanfranc says:

      It’s unlikely to be reduced further during this sale. But there’s typically another Winter/Christmas sale in late December, so you might consider waiting until then. It’s hard to predict, but it might be cheaper at that time.

    • JoeGuy says:

      It’s already the Daily Deal so it won’t go cheaper, plus the Christmas sale is in a month and the game will have only been out 2~3 by then, it won’t hit 50% till next year, it’s always in the top 10 when I check.

      • The Tupper says:

        Good point. Another game nabbed – Thanks.

        Anybody tried the DLC yet? Any good?

        • Bluefox says:

          I was tempted by the DLC enough to purchase it after twenty hours of playing vanilla. Being able to customize your soldiers is nice, the armor kits look good, and getting the extra soldier at the beginning can be useful if you go through recruits like hot plasma through deck plating.

          That said, it doesn’t offer anything huge; unless you like palette-swapping, even the sale price may seem a little steep.

          Later DLC is rumored to have more maps, weapons, tech, and/or modes of play, so it might be worth waiting for that.

  26. Vinraith says:

    I don’t need any new games for the next month, my backlog is full enough as it is. I think I’ll take a pass on this one.

  27. wodin says:

    Achtung Panzer OS and two DLC and Steel Fury and a few other games thrown in all for $4.99

    http://strategyfirst.com/games/2681-strategy-first-thanksgiving-bundle.html

  28. Dances to Podcasts says:

    Got me Jet Set Radio, Dream Machine, Sword & Sworcery, Cargo Commander, Unstoppable Gorg and InMomentum so far. :)

  29. Squishpoke says:

    Serious Sam 3 is 75% off, $9.99.

    Better than most of the 33% off sales on the front page!

  30. GunnerMcCaffrey says:

    Zeno Clash for $0.99.
    Sanctum collection for $4.74.
    Warlock for $9.99.
    AI War for $2.49.
    Defense Grid for $2.49.
    Dream Machine bundle for $5.99.

    • Premium User Badge

      P7uen says:

      Alright then, I’ll buy AI War.

      What is the best approach? Should I start vanilla or get X Y or Z expansions? The “Alien Bundle”?

  31. IckyThump says:

    The Mount and Blade games are 50% off – should I start with warband, or the original?

    • Premium User Badge

      Joshua IX says:

      Skip the original and play Warband. It is superior in every conceivable way…

    • Yesman1ification says:

      Wait for the daily deal / flash sales OR the last day so that you have a chance to buy for 75% off.

      And start with Warband.

  32. fish99 says:

    Witcher 2 for £8 looks like a great deal, but it’s not a daily so I’ll wait till the last day to pick it up, just in case.

  33. MadTinkerer says:

    Those utter bastards. It used to be a once a year winter sale. Now between the summer and winter sales we have Halloween and “AUTUMN”!?!

    They’re just not going to stop until I’ve purchased every Steam game, are they? Over eight hundred isn’t enough for them. That’s more than one game every week* since I got The Orange Box and first installed Steam. And it’s not enough.

    My poor, poor wallet. :”'(

    *Though some of them are originally Genesis/Mega Drive games, a lot of them were purchased in bundles, a few of them were free, et cetera.

    • FCA says:

      It’s an American thing: they have this holiday “Black Friday”, in celebration of buying their land for next to nothing from the natives. As an American company, they’re obliged to participate, and so everything is on sale, in remembrance of their forefathers.

  34. Frank says:

    That cheapshark thing you guys are advertising is quite useful for browsing these deals and others. Hooray for ads

  35. One Pigeon says:

    I just got paid, Planetside 2 has just come out and I’ve saved up. So that’s my time and Xmas presents sorted for this year.

    What’s that, a steam sale? I will resist, I will resist, I will res… bugger.
    Looks like the family are getting socks again.

    • Premium User Badge

      Joshua IX says:

      *You hear a whisper from a dark corner of the room*

      Pssst… Planetside II is free to play so all your hard earned cash can be spent on the sale ;)

  36. bill says:

    I haven’t played any games from the last 3 steam sales… and most of the deals seem to be repeating anyway.. so they’ll be the same price or cheaper in the next 10 sales.

    So I think I’ll skip this one.

  37. Catastrophe says:

    Something I’ve noticed Steam are doing in this sale, which is very annoying and I did not notice them doing in past sales is advertise a game as % off, displaying the current price and the price its been apparently reduced down from, when in reality the price its showing is its RRP.

    For example Darksiders 2, 66% off, £11.89 down from £34.99, when in reality before the sale it was £29.99.

    Isnt this the same thing large Supermarkets were recently pulled on?

    • Catastrophe says:

      Darkness 2 – 50% off, £29.99 down from £59.99… seriously what?

  38. Hmm-Hmm. says:

    It seems a bit strange to have a sale now when it’s so close to the christmas sale. Might have been better off having the sale some time in october, I think. Yeah they had a small halloween sale, but they could just have a single bigger sale instead.

  39. Premium User Badge

    cpt_freakout says:

    Chivalry at $17, what say ye?

  40. Premium User Badge

    Llewyn says:

    Goodness me, Max Payne 3 for £7.50? That seems to be very cheap very quickly.