The RPS Bargain Bucket: Brutal Improvisation

By Lewie Procter on October 12th, 2013 at 1:16 pm.


Would you like to play an electronic game of chance? How about spending a relatively small amount of money for some code and some assets packaged up into a consumable package? Then it seems that you’ve come to the right place, the RPS Bargain Bucket, where cheap games go to be curated into a convenient roundup. Don’t forget that for some reason I seem to spend all of my time posting links to the best deals on all kinds of video games over at SavyGamer.co.uk.

Alpha Centauri – £1.49/€1.76/$2.39
Oh my goodness you must buy Alpha Centauri. Here’s what I said about it in my retrospective:

The setting creates a kind of tension that is missing from a lot of similar strategy games. On the one hand you are motivated to act in the interests of the greater good, with the hope of establishing sustainable survival for the human race. On the other hand, you’ve got to be responsible for your faction. No one else is going to keep the mind worms from melting all of your civilians brains in the night.

More here. Hey, Firaxis! How about a spiritual successor to this please. Pretty please with sugar on top. Don’t make me get out the nerve staples. This also comes with a copy of The Witcher, which GOG are including for no additional charge with any game you buy from them at the moment, so might be worth taking a look at the rest of their EA promo.

AssCreed 3 – £6/similar prices in other currencies.
Apply coupon “GMG25-7VBH8-67CAC”.
I’ve not played this entry in the Ass series, but I have played every prior entry, and I’d be utterly shocked if this one was actually a game about assassination, rather than a weird blend of walking between cutscenes, doing the specific thing that the game tells you to do exactly how it wants you to do it in order to complete the mission, and gawping at the utterly beautiful and yet ultimately shallow environments. Mix in some sci-fi bobbins that they are obviously making up as they go along, some problematic representation of women, a baffling web of different retailer exclusive editions and day one DLC, and some bits where you sit on a bench to hide from the people that were chasing you down moments ago, and you’ve got yourself a multimillion dollar transmedia IP. Here’s wot Alec thought if you want that in more words.

F1 2013 – £12.99
Registers on Steam.
The eagerly anticipated sequel to F1 2012, players have been waiting for a year after that cliffhanger ending in last year’s release: Will the man who drives the fast car reach the finish line before the other men that also drive the fast cars? Find out by sticking your key in the ignition and putting your foot down on the go pedal. And also buying and installing and playing it. But is this year’s entry a 2.4 litre V8, or is it just running on air? There’s no verdict on the RPS database as of yet, maybe some of your fellow drivers can let you know whether they enjoyed their time in the cockpit via the comments. I best stop writing now before the wheels fall off this car metaphor, and I crash into a barrier.

Teleglitch: Die More Edition – £1.68/similar prices in other currencies.
Apply coupon “GMG25-7VBH8-67CAC”. Registers on Steam.
I’ve not yet given this a try beyond the demo myself, but it was certainly pressing many of my buttons, and I’ve picked it up this week whilst it was cheap. Here’s wot Jim had to say about this somewhat rogueish thing.

All the effects, really. Visually it does some startling things with stuff like the weapon distortion blasts. It’s just beautifully made, in a way that a lot of games just miss. What I thought was odd, actually, was that I loved this but didn’t enjoy Hotline Miami, and I wondered if it was because in Teleglitch your death takes longer. You will die, but it’s seldom without a tooth-and-claw scrap. And there’s a lot of brutal improvisation with bombs and things to get past.

More here.

Deal of the week
World of Goo – 62p/€0.73/$0.99
Registers on Steam.
Doesn’t time fly when you’re playing videogames? World of Goo, unleashed on the world just months after Jonathan Blow first invented indie games, is now celebrating it’s fifth birthday. Happy goo day! The games industry has changed quite a lot since then, but dragging and dropping balls of goo to construct makeshift lattice structures in order to get bits of goo from A to B is still extremely entertaining. World of Goo will make you think, it will make you laugh, and then it will make you feel emotions. Remember those? Head over here to read something called a “review” of World of Goo from the RPS archives.

Also of note:
Dark Messiah Might & Magic – £1.87//similar prices in other currencies. Apply coupon “GMG25-7VBH8-67CAC”. Registers on Steam.
Devil May Cry: The New One – £7.49/€9.99/$12.49.
Six Sided Sanctuary – Pay What You Want
Blood Bowl: Legendary Edition, Cities XL Platinum, Confrontation, Divinity II: Developer’s Cut, Game of Thrones & R.A.W. Realms of Ancient War – Pay What You Want

Direct your web browser to SavyGamer.co.uk for all of the cheap games.

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75 Comments »

  1. MrBillwulf says:

    What makes Alpha Centauri so good is that any strategy is viable, because the game gives the player so many tools to succeed. Got mind worm problems? Make some empath units. When AC poses a problem, it also provides multiple tools for overcoming those problems. What frustrates me about the Civilization series is that it’s possible to come to an impasse. For example, in Civ 5, there may come a point when it’s not possible to keep your people happy. All you can do is wait. These impasses rarely, if ever, happen in AC.

    • SephiRok says:

      Shameless plug; we’re making a spiritual successor to Alpha Centauri, out soon: http://pandora.proxy-studios.com/

      • MrBillwulf says:

        Not shameless at all. I’m in the beta for Pandora. Haven’t had a chance to play much yet, but I’m hoping to play this weekend. ;-)

      • lordcooper says:

        Shameless plug: I just applied for your beta, please let me in!

      • hypercrisis says:

        Tell me, do you plan to combat the usual problem I find plagues intergalactic 4X games: vagueness, in both UI and direction? Firaxis are always well directed and you never find yourself unsure of how to act on something, which made Alpha stand out. That and a consistent pace is always a nice thing to have (looking at you, Sins of a Solar Empire)

        • Bugamn says:

          Wasn’t Alpha Centauri intraplanetary?

        • SephiRok says:

          We are set on the ground of one planet, not out in space. But nevertheless, in terms of UI, our general directions are simplicity, clarity and usability. If you like the Civilization 5 interface, you will probably like ours too. If you wish the Civilization 5 interface required less clicks to go through, you’ll probably love ours.

    • BooleanBob says:

      Also, you get to flirt with a planet.

      • Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

        Bah, I do that every day with Earth. She pretends not to notice me, but I can tell by the saucy continental drift she does when she knows I’m watching that she loves the attention.

  2. LTK says:

    Regarding World of Goo: Does the Humble widget give you Android versions if they are available? I’ve got the Android version from a bundle but I don’t know if they usually package it with the PC versions.

    • Bugamn says:

      Depends on the sale you bought it. First android sales included pc versions of the games, but the last ones don’t.
      You can check your humble account to see if it appears. And anyone that buys often those bundles probably has one, or two, or three, or fours copies to spare.

  3. Faldrath says:

    Is SimplyCDKeys really legit? That’s an awfully low price for F1 2013, considering it’s just been released.

    • trjp says:

      It’s part of Simplygames who are a pretty well known seller of physical boxed stuff – been around a good few years.

      I strongly suspect their keys are CIS keys (Russia’s zone on Steam) which is a bit naughty on their behalf – but as few games have any region restrictions on them you really won’t notice the difference…

      IIRC, you might want to use a card or make sure your PayPal email matches your account email – otherwise they put you through a validation thingy which can take a few hours.

      p.s. they’re also doing XCOM: The Bureau for £7.99 which is astonishingly cheap for a game that recent…

      • melnificent says:

        Simply Games – Who recently engaged in a bait and switch regarding PS4 Pre-orders? Yeah, their as trustworthy as a used car salesman short on their target

      • Faldrath says:

        Hm, ok, thanks. At least I can use paypal and not give them my card info directly. And given that I’ve been buying half-baked Codemasters stuff for full price for a few years now, I won’t feel too guilty about being a bit naughty this once!

    • Carra says:

      Bought 3 games from them, haven’t had a problem yet.

    • Flea says:

      I bought Borderlands 2 from them awhile back and had no problem whatsoever. The CD key came almost immediately after checkout, had to wait a few minutes.

    • Deadly Sinner says:

      I nearly bought Rayman: Legends from a keyseller, but I didn’t want to send my details to a shifty website over an unencrypted connection. I bought one from Ebay instead where I could do it anonymously over Paypal, and it only cost $2 more.

      Just make absolutely sure what region the key is coming from. Personally, if it isn’t region free, I wouldn’t buy it.

    • gnodab says:

      So what kind of key do you get? I mean which region? Do you get a UK key or does it depend on your region while you buy it?
      Because since i moved to germany I cant buy many games on steam anymore. They are either cut or german only or outright unavailable for purchase. Very sad and very silly.

  4. BloonerNL says:

    Regarding World of Goo: It doesn’t actually register on Steam I’m afraid… Just bought it and the Humble Store does not allow you to get a key for it.

    The game is on sale in the Steam Store too though, for 0.14 euro more, but that is to be expected…

    • Almond Milk says:

      Aye, I’d like to confirm this as well. Bought in hopes of gifting it to my 6 year old nephew, as he can “take” his games from house to house by using our steam account.

      Not a big loss, as it’s so cheap and available for the same price on steam (in our Canadian funny monies), but should be changed in the article.

  5. Yosharian says:

    Even though I know it’s a pile of crap, I’m still tempted to pick up AC3… bah

    ok i have read some reviews on metacritic and i am cured of my urge to buy this game! woot!

  6. zipleft says:

    Am I a bad person if I only buy games when they are ~5 € or below? Even the indie games where I should/want to support the developers?
    Does the developers and publishers decide if a game is -75 % on Steam? Or is it a Steam choice and they pay the difference (ok, that seems too nice)?

    • FF56 says:

      I’m not on Steam but I assume they operate the same way as every other digital store. They only place a discount with the approval of the developer/publisher.

    • GunnerMcCaffrey says:

      You’re not a bad person. You might be participating in a trend that might be really bad for creators in the long run, but you’re hardly the only one. Even if the dev or publisher makes the choice (and it might not be them, it might be the publisher), there’s kind of a race to the bottom on now. Seems like a lot of people have started considering anything over a couple of bucks to be a lot for independent games, which is mad. So maybe the real question is whether you’re bothered by that but do it anyway.

      Kind of depends on the game, though. Is it an old game, a game that bombed, or a game that went unnoticed, and has probably already made 90% of its sales at normal price? Was the decision likely made by the developers or the publisher, and who’s likely to actually get the money (or who would get the money if you’d paid full price)? Etc. etc.

      • Kasper says:

        A heavy discount can actually be a good thing for the creators – there are examples of games making a lot more money when discounted. Valve themselves have made some experiments where slashing the price by 75% caused the gross revenue to increase by a factor of 40.

        http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2011/10/24/less-is-more-gabe-newell-on-game-pricing/

      • Snakejuice says:

        “there’s kind of a race to the bottom on now.”

        This feels like a natural trend in an industry that’s grown big enough to be compared to the movie industry. I’m expecting new game prices to eventually be much closer to new movie prices. It’s not a bad thing, as you get more customers you can afford to charge each customer less because the production costs is independent of how many people liked your game.

    • RobF says:

      “Am I a bad person if I only buy games when they are ~5 € or below? Even the indie games where I should/want to support the developers?”

      Not really. It’s not your job to prop up the games industry or anything is it?

      Enjoy your cheap games!

    • HadToLogin says:

      Still better person than someone only pirating and never buying.

    • zapatapon says:

      The overall amount of money I have given out per year to indie games must have increased five- to tenfold since bundles have started to exist, although I generally pay under 5 EUR. I hardly see how that would make me a bad person. On the other hand, I can understand that indie developers are worried whether this trend they now have to submit to is beneficial to them in the long run.

  7. Ross Angus says:

    Assassins Creed 2 is also on sale for cheapness (£2.49), but it’s from Green Man Gaming.

  8. mwoody says:

    Just a warning: Blood Bowl is fun, but the company that makes them releases new versions with tiny improvements as entirely new products, not DLC. The version in the bundle above is NOT the newest version. Owning that version on Steam does, however, give you a % off of the new version, but not – given the tiny improvements involved – enough.

    • Randomer says:

      Now, when you say “tiny impovements”, do you mean the extra races that get added in? Or do you mean basic patches, like “Gave skaven linemen +2 to shove for balancing purposes” or “Fixed bug wherein dwarves fall through the floor after a field goal”?

      I’ve had my eye on this for years, but never wanted to shell out big bucks for a sports game. Still, my friends and family have been raving about “fantasy football” for years, so I thought I should give it a try.

      • cpt_freakout says:

        I enjoy Blood Blow immensely, it’s very very fun. The bug patches (which were few anyway) affect all versions, so don’t worry about it. The game hasn’t been supported patch-wise in a very long while, though, so I wouldn’t worry too much about getting the Chaos edition or Legendary. What mwoody means by tiny improvements is that they added two new teams and like three new stadiums… and that’s it. Cyanide has released four versions of the game so far: the normal one, the Dark Elves edition, the Legendary Edition, and now the Chaos edition. The Dark Elves edition was a joke because it only added Dark Elves and was sold full-price; the Legendary Edition is what people were really looking for, and is what the normal game should have been ever since the beginning. The two new teams and stadiums in Chaos aren’t really all that exciting unless you’re really into the lore, but it is the most ‘complete’ version of the game. If you don’t mind that or don’t care, then the Legendary Edition is what you should go for.

        • malkav11 says:

          The Dark Elves edition was a free upgrade of the original release, actually.

        • Don Reba says:

          I enjoy Blood Blow immensely, it’s very very fun.

          Is this Blood Bowl by Jonathan Blow?

    • BooleanBob says:

      On the flipside, the fact that the content increments in each update have been scandalously small does at least mean that this version is mostly feature-complete*, despite not being the newest.

      *That is, a mostly feature-complete version OF a mostly-ish feature-complete digitisation of the original board game. There’s still significant content missing, but if you’re coming to the game cold there’s more than enough to recommend for the price of pennies.

      • malkav11 says:

        By most accounts it’s only worth playing in multiplayer, though, and I would assume the multiplayer community tends to move to the most current and complete edition.

        • BooleanBob says:

          Perhaps, but Legendary and Chaos edition multiplayer is totally integrated, so you’re still only missing out on access to three teams.

          And I’ve sunk many an hour into the single player mode. It doesn’t teach you much beyond the basics of the game, sure, but thrashing the computer can be very cathartic. Plus being able to develop teams over the course of days, that would rather take months to reach fruition in online tournaments, opens up high-Team Value play for fun and experimentation.

    • Baines says:

      Chaos Edition is 67% off if you own a previous version on Steam.

      I don’t think the discount stacks with sales, though. Which is rather bad when you consider that Chaos Edition has reached 75% off entirely on its own during Steam sales.

      • SkittleDiddler says:

        I have Steam copies of both Dark Elves and Legendary, but the price is firmly set at $29.99. It doesn’t change at checkout, either.

        I think that whole “previous owners get a discount” thing is a myth for the most part.

        • malkav11 says:

          I think it may be that it has existed in the past, it’s just a temporary promotion rather than a permanent discount like it, y’know, ought to be. I’m pretty sure the Dark Elves to Legendary transition featured a discount for Dark Elves edition owners that only lasted a few weeks after launch.

        • Baines says:

          I have Legendary and just checked Chaos. Page displayed 67% off, with a price of $10 instead of $29.99. Adding to the cart, it displayed $10 in the cart. I didn’t go through with a purchase because I didn’t really want it. (And like I said, the game has actually gone cheaper than that during sales.)

  9. SkittleDiddler says:

    Not that I was going to buy it, But AssCreed 3 isn’t showing a price or a “Buy” button for me. Hmmm.

    It’s too bad GMG shut down the Mass Effect sale last night. With the coupon code, there were some fantastic deals going there.

  10. Morte66 says:

    Crysis 2 Maximum Edition £6.24 on Steam. Do we have thoughts about that?

    Assume I like tactical shooters where you blow up cars next to enemies instead of just shooting them, and I only want singleplayer.

    • RobF says:

      It’s Roland Emmerich: The Videogame. It’s an overlong spectacle led blockbuster thing that should have ended 3 or so endings before it actually ends and contains more padding than a padded thing with lots of padding in (hang fire, player, it’s walk slowly time) and for bonus points you get to do some stuff 3 times like pressing a button, that’s always a good thing to do 3 times. Because Crytek are clearly insane.

      But! It’s a very pretty spectacle indeed and looks magnificent at turns if you can ignore the smeary vaseline every time you turn and when it finally lets you play in the little arenas it has for taking enemies down, nice and Predator-in-the-city-y. Probably a bit too dumb for anything really tactical though? The enemies just run around a lot really.

      So yeah, kinda enjoyable and a bit depressing at the same time.

    • dE says:

      Crysis 2 is weird. When you’re fighting humans, it’s one of the best Predator Titles there is. Give these guy the official IP already. It’s just the right amount of soldiers panicking while you’re crawling around invisible, taking them out one by one. Great fun.
      But when you’re fighting other stuff, it’s also the most generic and (to me) dull shooter I’ve seen in a while. For the price they’re asking, meh I think that’s a fair price.

    • fish99 says:

      Hmmm…. how would I describe Crysis 2. Solid, fun, and very pretty. Worth playing. Story is kinda bad, and doesn’t follow on from Crysis/Warhead very well at all. It’s more linear than Crysis with smaller areas, but they’re still bigger than your average shooter.

      Btw if you never played Crysis get that instead, it’s a much better game and it probably looks better. Warhead is good too.

    • Yosharian says:

      Its absolute crap, don’t bother

      (and I loved the first Crysis)

    • Cytrom says:

      I replayed it recently.. for whatever reason. Probably shouldn’t have.

      It doesn’t really contunue the story C1 started. It is super monotonous and repetitive. You fight the same kind of enemies all the way with pretty much the same kind of weapons. Even the alien fights are exactly the same as fighting humans. The only difference is that they like to use melee attacks when they are within 2 meters of you. The story is dull and stupid at times. The level design is linear.. although pretty, but lacking any style. Turning the nanosuit into this all knowing god device that solves every conceivable problem was just embarrassingly stupid.

      On the upside, the multiplayer can be entertaining, if cod-with-nanosuits sound fun to you.. it is kinda fun for a short while.

      Far Cry 3 completely surpassed crysis (and the original far cry) in realising the core idea of far cry(sis). Which would be scouting out enemies, making a plan of your free choice how to systematically wipe them out, stalking them, and sneaking around in a pretty jungle environment. Basically being the predator.

      The crysis series is now simply obsolete.

    • Morte66 says:

      Thank you, genttlefolk, I gave it a miss.

  11. dethtoll says:

    Resident Evil 6 is a big chunk off ’til Monday, too.

    I’m really not sure I don’t want to get it at that price.

  12. TechnicalBen says:

    Got world of Goo. After about 6 years, they got £0.62p out of me. 6 years ago, I was happy to pay full asking price, if they had not shut down their PC store for a Wii exclusivity deal (normal publishing deal, but still they shut down the PC store). So hope that at least gives an example of what happens when you shut off your consumer base.

    Do I expect anyone to notice? No. My back balance is happy about it though. :)

    • jalf says:

      What?

      I’m pretty sure it’s always been available on PC.

    • Bent Wooden Spoon says:

      As Jalf pointed out, it’s always been available on the PC. The only thing exclusive to the Wii was 2 player co-op.

      Well done showing those indie devs though!

  13. rubywright says:

    I quit working at shoprite and now I make $35h – $80h…how? I’m working online! My work didn’t exactly make me happy so I decided to take a chance on something new… after 4 years it was so hard to quit my day job but now I couldn’t be happier. Heres what I do, http://www.Pro67.com

  14. phelix says:

    Buy Dark Messiah. Seriously. It’s the best spike trap simulator around.

  15. hamburger_cheesedoodle says:

    All these comments and not one person talking about teleglitch?

    Well I was finally able to afford it, poor bugger that I am. It’s also on sale directly through Steam if you don’t want to go through greenmangaming, for one cent more. It cheap enough that I was able to buy it by selling skins from CS:GO and hats from TF2, and I highly recommend it.

    • mwoody says:

      Oh cool, thanks for that; too lazy for greenman but that Steam sale is worth a click.

  16. kalirion says:

    Groupees 1c megabundle: http://groupees.com/1cmb

    Build your own 1c bundle, minimum two games for $1, each additional game $0.50 each.

    Not gonna list them all, and the games range in quality from poor to great. I personally recommend King’s Bounty: The Legend and Armored Princess to everybody, and hear good things about the Men of War series for RTS fans.

    No matter which ones you choose, you get all the bonus games – Men of War: Red Tide, FairyTale, Death to Spies Gold, Freight Tycoon, Dawn of Magic 2, so it’s really 7 games for the minimum $1, 8 once Reign: Conflict of Nations is unlocked.

  17. GoTo2k says:

    Thx RPS, now I own 3 new old games! ;)

    I really had to laugh when I saw that Assassins Creed Brotherhood (which was quite boring to be honest) was just stated as AssBro :D

  18. Apocalypse says:

    Alpha Centauri? Screw alpha centauri, dungeon keeper 2 in a nice win8 ready box is on sale on gog as well, and nearly all wing commanders. (except for privateer 2)

  19. fish99 says:

    Kinda off topic but is anyone else a touch paranoid about having so many digital games in the hands of so few companies? As time goes on the amount of games I’d lose if any of them went bust just gets bigger and bigger, and there’s only the GOG games which are DRM free and where I can keep my own backups of them.

    350 steam games (if that sounds a lot, half of those are due to various bundles, mostly HIB), probably 12 on Origin, 10 on UPlay, 10 on GOG, 2 on Capsule.

    • kalirion says:

      Desura provides DRM Free installers for 99.9% of their games as well. Just download off the game pages, no need for the client.

    • Randomer says:

      I would probably be happier if I lost 90% of my games. I’d have less option paralysis. As it is, I have a hard time enjoying any game because while I’m playing it, I’m thinking of all the other games that I have that I’m not making any progress on.

      Anyway, most of your Humble games have DRM free installers for PC, Mac, and Linux that you can grab off of your personal humble page.

      • fish99 says:

        Good point, I keep forgetting you can download most games from HIB.

        I know what you mean about being paralyzed by having too much choice. It’s not just sales, there’s way more games being made than there used to be, and too many good games to play them all.

        I finally got round to Skyrim recently (now nearly finished), next up Dishonored, or maybe Red Faction Guerrilla, or maybe Dead Space 2, or Arkham City, or GTAV, or some more Planetside 2, or Darksiders 2, or Spec Ops, or the Witcher, or Gears 3, or Last of Us, or Guild Wars 2, or ……. (head explodes)

        • kalirion says:

          Foolish mortal, Skyrim will [i]never[/i] be finished.

          See you in 400 hours.