Hello! I bet you were worried there’d be no bargains (plushies) this week. Sorry about that. Family tends to want to monopolize your time when you haven’t seen them in a while. Anyway, it looks like the year is slowly beginning to ramp up. New games and announcements seem to pop up every time I turn around. GDC is barely weeks away. All around me, I hear games journalists sharpening their metaphorical blades, ready to engage in a gladiatorial write-to-the-finish. Or something. This week’s plushie, which looks like it might sorely be in need of larger living accommodations, is courtesy of one Jason Kruta, who failed to include their RockPaperShotgun username and, as such, must be referred to by name.
Humble Indie Bundle II
Pay at least $4.68 / £2.79 / €3.39 to get everything
The way certain organizations keep going, it sometimes feel like I’m recommending the same bundles over and over again. Which is, in a word, frustrating. Because there’s only so many ways you can write, “Yay!
The 2K Essential Collection
$29.99 / £19.99 / €29.99
Okay, so. If you crinkle your nose up at this bundle, I’m afraid we can’t be friends. I enjoy indie games as much as the next person, but this is delicious. Sure, BioShock Infinite might be more bacon than the perfect portabello mushroom pizza but there’s a reason as to why so many people seem to guiltily enjoy it. And don’t get me started on Borderlands 2. For a while, it was all I played. Mindless? Sure. But oh-so-entertaining. Similarly, XCOM: Enemy Unknown and Civilization V are more than likely to swallow up your time. My only point of contention with this entire bundle? The fact that they labeled it so demurely. I’d have gone with, “The 2K Goodbye-Free-Time Collection.” (P.S: Discount codes are your friend: OQE4LG-WEQPSE-SMCME1)
$5.24 / £3.74 / €4.49
Speaking of familiar faces, here’s a bundle from the guys over at Frozenbyte. At this point of time, the Trine franchise might well be my most (accidentally) evangelized series. But I suppose there’s a reason for that. While it’s not the most affecting game you’ll play this week (or this year), it’s beautiful, co-op experience riddled with some fun puzzles and some potential for mischief. As for the Shadowgrounds property, I’m not really sure. Do you enjoy top-down shooters? If so, this might be for you. Reviews certainly seem approving, if not outright glowing. (Anyone have experience with this?)
$1.99 / £1.19 / €1.44
Waking Mars is an odd one for me. I’m a little claustrophobic so any game which requires me to wander through tight, subterranean levels makes me nervous. But the game is, however, smart and atmospheric and oddly reminiscent of The Swapper. Except without rampantly abused clones, of course. However, that isn’t Waking Mars’ selling point. No, Waking Mars’ main thing is that it turns you into an intergalactic gardener without instigating any amount of silliness. It’s thoughtful, and weird and completely unafraid to beat you over the upside of the head for any demonstrations of stupidity. Actually, read this Wot I Think.
Simon the Sorcerer
$1.79 / £1.07 / €1.29
Ah, don’t you remember the good old days of adventure games and puzzles that barely made any sense at all? Simon the Sorcerer was one of the banes of my early life, though largely in the same way that the old Monkey Island games were. I thoroughly enjoyed the humour in it, and at its current price, it may well be worth picking up for old-school, point & click aficionados. (P.S: The sequels are all available for cheap on GOG.com right now.)
Also of note:
Groupees’ Scandinavian Bundle – $1/£0.60/€0.72
Besides the fact that it’s only a dollar, this bundle gets my vote because of The Journey Down: Chapter One, a somewhat underrated point & click adventure.
Rome: Total War Collection – $1.45 / $0.87 / €1.05
Is this the entire collection? Like, the whole nine yards? I can’t tell with these things, sometimes. There always seems to be a missing expansion somewhere. That said, if you’ve been hankering to get your strategy gaming nostalgia on, you might like this little discount.