Humble Bundle X Offers 6 Games Wot Are Quite Good

By Graham Smith on January 8th, 2014 at 4:00 pm.

The RPS chatroom, earlier.

It’s almost hard to believe there was a time when we weren’t being constantly bombarded with cheap games, but it’s true. When I was a lad, I had to save up for two months, walk miles through snow to the nearest PC World, and turn my coins over for a game that probably wouldn’t even work. Now every hobo with a bindle is buying bundles of games for only a single week’s pocket money.

Humble Bundle X is the tenth bundle in the “main” series of Humble Bundles, and it contains To The Moon, Reus, Papa & Yo, Surgeon Simulator 2013, Bit.Trip Runner 2 and Joe Danger 2: The Movie. Which is a better, more interesting selection of games than I’ve seen in a bundle in a while. I’ve written more about each of them below.

To The Moon looks like an RPG, but actually it’s an adventure game about making you cry. Here’s John’s Wot I Think, which begins: “I’m a wreck. I can’t delay telling you: To The Moon is a truly wonderful game. It’s the best game I’ve played this year. It’s a pixel-graphics indie adventure, mostly made by one guy, with a preposterous premise, and yet after spending the day playing it I’m emotionally exhausted. I’m not sure whether to write a review, or curl up in the fetal position and hug a pillow.” Videogames! Also John and Adam rubbed their tears on each other’s shoulders in a Verdict.

Joe Danger is a side-on stunt racer about scoring points by shooting over ramps. It’s colourful, cute and it did that frustrating thing of taking a long time to find its way to PC, which means we didn’t WIT or Verdict it. In brief: if you’re going to play it now that it’s here, Joe Danger 2 is the way to do it. It contains everything that was good about the original and a lot more besides. Kieron interviewed Hello Games about it before the release of the first game: “The truth is, we just want to make games, and games that people want to play, ideally something that puts a grin on your face. Hopefully we’ll get the opportunity to keep doing what we’re doing for the foreseeable future. We’ve got some ideas that we desperately want to get out there.” They’re making No Man’s Sky now, of course.

Papa & Yo is a puzzle-platformer which, like so many others, is about a young boy and his magical monster cooperating to solve environment puzzles. It’s also an extremely personal story about its creator and his relationship with his alcoholic father; when your magical monster pal eats a frog, he turns violent towards you, hurling fire. The metaphor works better than the puzzles, as Nathan explained in his Wot I Think: “Puzzling’s main strength, meanwhile, lies in the glorious magical realism of Papo’s world, but even that eventually grows predictable. The first time I picked up a cardboard box and gasped as a full-sized house floated along accordingly, I was utterly enchanted. It felt like I’d stepped into a child’s imagination, this place where adult perceptions of plausibility haven’t even begun to take root. That, however, quickly becomes a common puzzle-solving theme, as does moving giant plots of land and stacking objects into magnificent twisting towers that literally bend to your will.”

Bit.Trip Runner 2 is an auto-runner about stringing together jumps, slides and other dodge-moves to navigate a colourful, 3D platforming world. I’m told that it’s rhythmic and satisfying, though I’ve never played it and RPS has never really written about it in detail. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

If you pay over the average, you can also get:

Reus is a strategy game in which you develop a civilization by using enormous elemental gods to summon trees, water and so on. It’s a little simple, but it’s better than the current crop of god games. It’s also the perfect bundle game: a cool thing you’ve probably heard of but equally probably never got around to playing. Alec nailed its pleasures in an Impressions post: “It really does look magnificent, and the sheer, awesome presence of the gods is such a treat, but I worry that its bread and butter mechanics might feel more a chore than celebratory omnipotence. We’ll see what later escalations bring, though. For now, I’m oddly happy to just sit there in freeplay mode, spinning the vast globe around as my giants grumpily haul their impossible bulk around the perfectly circular planetary crust. It’d be my ideal screensaver, I think.”

Surgeon Simulator 2013 started life as a jam game, but the joke was extended into a full release last year. It’s an arm simulator: you awkwardly control the appendage as you paw around, grappling with surgical tools and trying to perform procedures. I found the free original a better expression of its ideas, but Jim was keen to celebrate its slapstick simplicity in his Wot I Think: “The result of this is that you are essentially incapable of interacting with the scene presented to you in a sensible way. You fumble about in the space in front of you like Octodad inside a paper bag, and you might just be able to grasp a scalpel or a whirring saw. Sure, you might even eventually get through that guy’s ribcage – but what then? Horror.”

And that’s your lot. As always, all six games are available on Windows, Mac and Linux. Go look at the bundle page for more information. The average price is currently $5.62 (£3.42), which means you can pick up all six games for the price of a pint.

, , , , , , , .

47 Comments »

Sponsored links by Taboola
  1. Revolving Ocelot says:

    It is worth mentioning that if you paid $10 dollars you could get 1 of 1000 copies of Starbound. These all went in less than a minute, which drove the BTA price waaaaaaaay up. A lot of people are pissed about this.

    • BisonHero says:

      Assuming I’m looking at the right BTA figure, is $5.51 really that high? Or has it dropped since you made your comment 5 minutes ago?
      Or was that just a side note, and you were saying that people are pissed there were only 1000 copies of Starbound to go around?

      • GameCat says:

        It was like ~$10 for some time, so it was like 2x more than average average price for every Humble Bundle ever.

      • Revolving Ocelot says:

        Ah, it was $8 when I checked earlier this afternoon. People are/were pissed about both price and limited copies.

    • The First Door says:

      People were pissed at having to pay $10 to get six games? I’m not sure people deserve nice things then…

      • RiffRaff says:

        People are pissed because instead of letting the market decide the price as they have always done, the humble used starbound as a cheap tactic to manipulate the price of the bundle. Its too early to say if this is going to hurt them in terms of how much money this bundle will make, but right now it looks like all its managed to do is piss people off, which is never a good thing when you are trying to sell things to people.

        • The First Door says:

          Yeah, sorry, but I just lack any sort of sympathy for people who moan about the this sort of thing!

          It’s $10 for six games and you are supporting developers and charities. If one genuinely thinks that one is being ripped off (which I don’t believe even for a second) simply don’t buy it.

          • RiffRaff says:

            Which is exactly my point, the humble took a risk by manipulating the price and now a lot of people are upset and might not buy it, or will only buy it at $1. I just don’t see the benefit in taking that risk. You can roll out the entitlement argument if you want, but it was the humble that created that sense of entitlement in the first place.

          • chargen says:

            I don’t think anyone ‘rolled out the entitlement argument’, just pointed out the facts.

            But I guess it must have seemed self-evident when dealing with this kind of reaction.

          • Cytrom says:

            The reason the humble bundle still exists today is because it began as a PAY WHAT YOU WANT promotion. Which was quite unique at the time, and people liked it because of that (dont even mention the charity excuse. Its bullshit. Sales of BF4 wouldnt explode if tomorrow EA would announce that half of their profits go to charity, yet still keep it 60 euros.. or whatever they are charging for it.)… so calling people cheap for wanting to actually ‘pay what they want’ instead of paying above your imaginary line of “appropriate” price is kind of stupid.
            HB is simply manipulating the beat the average price lately. While I’m ok with it, and their deals are still great, it does go against their estabilished character and rules, and might bite them in the ass in the long run.

          • chargen says:

            They call people cheap?

            Can’t you still pay $0.01 for the non-beat the avg games?

            Has the average price ever started at zero and been determined only by buyer’s choice of price? Or have they always ‘manipulated’ it by starting it at what they consider a fair average price (ala, 5 or 6 bucks)?

            *ans key: no, yes, no, yes

          • The First Door says:

            RiffRaff, I was basically saying: If someone can find it cheaper somewhere else, they should go do that. Otherwise they should moaning about people ‘manipulating the market’ as if it is a new thing.

        • GunnerMcCaffrey says:

          They didn’t “manipulate the price,” they offered a newly-released indie darling that’s got a lot of buzz at a bargain price. It had the effect of temporarily changing the BTA price.

          Funny how there’s such a high coincidence of people who go on about “letting the market decide” and people who ascribe the worst possible motivations to others.

        • Hmm-Hmm. says:

          ..as opposed to the people using the Humble Bundles’ choose your own price to get a lot of good games for almost nothing? Sorry, I don’t get your point here.

          Personally, I’d be glad if the average selling price was higher. I am usually far above it, so that may have something to do with it, granted.

    • Premium User Badge

      Smashbox says:

      Those poor souls paying $10 for 6 quite-good games.

      • Synesthesia says:

        WONT SOMEBODY THINK OF THE CHILDREN

        • Scumbag says:

          Forget the stinking children! What did they ever do for me?
          I NEED MORE GAMES FOR MY BACKLOG DAMNIT! SELFISH BUNDLE PEOPLE!

    • kwyjibo says:

      If you think the Humble guys are being cynical, just make sure the game developers get all your money.

      • SkittleDiddler says:

        Best advice here. Humble (deservedly, IMO) don’t get their cut, and the devs and charities get theirs.

        • iainl says:

          Or just give it all to devs and cut out Vhild’s Play as well. I’m still not entirely comfortable with donating to a charity that spends most of its money buying games off major-label publishers at full price.

          • Juan Carlo says:

            They need to get a different charity. I’ve never much liked Child’s Play. I’ve always gotten the sense that they try to make the charities as unappealing as possible, though, as they are mostly just a sales gimmick. If they had the Red Cross or an AIDS or Cancer charity or something people might actually be tempted to donate to them.

          • bill says:

            I haven’t paid attention to Child’s Play recently, but back when it started I rather liked it.
            It felt much more direct to give gifts to specific hospitals than to give money to a general charity.

            I can’t remember, it was back when I was earning a lot more, but I think I gave a games console (xbox?) to a children’s hospital somewhere in the UK.

    • primalchaos says:

      go take a quick glance at the Humble Bundle FB page, a lot of people are pissed off with every bundle

    • Deadly Sinner says:

      It actually turned out to be more than 1000 copies. If you paid $10 while the website still said there were keys, you likely got an email with a Starbound key. They also gave you the option to get a refund if you paid $10 and didn’t get a key.

    • The Random One says:

      This may be the first time Humble Prime did it, but Humble has done this before. The Deep Silver bundle and I think the Double Fine bundle had rewards for paying over a specific value, which ran for the bundle’s duration and IIRC it was even costlier ($15 I think).

  2. Stardreamer says:

    Worth buying just to help Hello Games pick up after their disastrous office flood.

    I wantses my No Man’s Sky, precious, yesss!

    • Premium User Badge

      RedViv says:

      I got the Joe Danger double pack right after I heard of that during the weekend. Really awful luck, and I hope they recover.

      • Premium User Badge

        Cantisque says:

        Joe Danger had a generous 50% off launch offer when it first appeared on Steam for both games, so I’d already picked those up. Played the first one through so far, was quite impressed with the tight controls.

  3. Premium User Badge

    Matt_W says:

    Runner 2 is my go to game when I have 5 minutes to chill before dinner. It’s very solid, with great presentation and a host of unlockables.

  4. InternetBatman says:

    It’s a shame I bought Reus during the Steam sale (kinda). I really like it more than most of the reviews, but like too many games they saw fit to arbitrarily limit it through time limits, a cumbersome unlock system, and silly limitations on ambassadors.

  5. Shuck says:

    It’s worth noting that this bundle is actually the debut for the Mac/Linux versions for almost all these games, and they’re not otherwise available through channels such as Steam or even the developers’ own websites. (I was taken aback when they claimed Mac/Linux versions for all these games, given that all but two were Windows only previously, and I couldn’t find any mention on the web that they’d been ported. But it’s true. I wonder if bundle inclusion spurred the development of these versions.)

    • InternetBatman says:

      That is one great thing about the humble bundle. It’s taken almost every high profile indie game and helped the creation of a linux port. Steam, Unity, and kickstarter have certainly helped raised the profile and portfolio of consumer linux, but the Humble Bundle deserves the lions share of the credit in my opinion.

  6. mikmanner says:

    I feel like I own every game that has ever been made through these sales

  7. Felixader says:

    I have made it a habit during these bundles to send the most of the money to those gamedevelopers whose games i haven’t played yet AND i am interested in.
    Humble Bundle of course gets a cut and sometimes Charity.

    Sometimes i adjust that for specific occasions, like this time i gave most (but not all of it) of it to the Joe Danger Guys so they can build up their offices again.

    I want No Mans Sky. X-P

    • harmen says:

      I hadn’t found the per-developer sliders! That’s neat for next bundle.

    • RiffRaff says:

      I didn’t know you could change it to give to individual developers. Good advice, thanks for that.

  8. araczynski says:

    nothing in this bundle worth a single buck to me personally, starbound included.

  9. Premium User Badge

    Yachmenev says:

    It’s a shame that RPS haven’t written about Runner 2 yet. It’s a great little game that’s very fun in short bursts. Anyone who buys it should combine it with the good friends DLC. The dancing animations for Machinarium Josef makes it worth it alone. :)

    I realize it’s hard to write about everything, but I hope that RPS will write a bit more about about the games from previously console centric developers like Gaijin Games and Q Games in the future.

    • playthatfunkytuba says:

      Yeah, I picked up Runner 2 in the Christmas sale and it’s everything the first game couldn’t quite pull off. Better music, the learning curve is much smoother and each level has its own character. It’s hypnotic to play or to watch, and I really wished for a DANCE! button in every other game I played over the holiday period…

  10. Premium User Badge

    Continuity says:

    “Reus is a strategy game” no, its a god game. Pure and simple, 100% thoroughbred, good old fashioned, god game.

    • mwoody says:

      I couldn’t possibly disagree more. It’s a puzzle game. God games are about controlling the people and feeling powerful; Reus is about constantly pausing and looking at every single piece on the board to maximize return on your next move. It’s such an intellectual exercise I find it uncomfortable and stopped playing.

      I could see it be called a strategy game possibly, in the sense that chess or high-end wargaming is strategy, but bears no gameplay resemblance whatsoever to anything I’d call a god game (Black and White, Populous, Dust, etc).

    • Premium User Badge

      Cinek says:

      LOL you ever played it? Or are you so young that you never played any true god games?
      It’s a simple puzzle game that deserves more of an iOS release than a PC. It doesn’t have anything to deal with God Game genre.

  11. Premium User Badge

    strangeloup says:

    I picked up Trials Evolution Gold Whizzbang Shiny Edition in the Xmas sale, and it’s really a bunch of fun, Uplay bollocks nonwithstanding. How does Joe Danger compare? Is it basically more of the same?

    Dunno how I feel about the rest. Bit.Trip Runner 2 is really good but I’ve already got it, To The Moon didn’t really gel with me when I got it for a pittance off GOG, and I suspect Reus and Papo & Yo will fit into the burgeoning category of things that look vaguely interesting but I only end up playing for about half an hour.

    I’d quite like to have a copy of Surgeon Simulator for cheap, mind, even though it is basically one joke.

  12. bill says:

    With the new deal on whether you get the bonus games being based on only the average, there seems to be no reason to buy now. I’m only really interested in To The Moon, so I think I’ll wait until they announce the bonus games to decide whether I want to pay enough for those.

    • Optimaximal says:

      If you buy it now at $1/whatever, you’ll get TTM (and the others) but lock in whatever the current BTA value is. You can then uplift your payment down the line & get it for that amount, rather than the raised amount that happens the second week if the bonus games are good.