I’ve been wandering around the virtual shopping mall that is the internet this morning, checking out which retailers have got special offers on digitally distributed personal computer games, and here’s my curated selection of which deals are most worth your attention. Beyond this list of games, you can find a regularly updated collection of the best deals on games across all formats over at my website SavyGamer.co.uk. Read on for this week’s bargain bucket.
BioShock Infinite – $9.99/€7.30/£6.17
This is from Amazon US, so you will need to enter a US billing address. Registers on Steam.
This one divided opinions, huh? I, for one, was on the side of the gulf shouting “I was seriously disappointed with this video game”. I found the combat to be tediously safe. It was almost entirely about shooting, whether you were shooting regular bullets or the various different magic powers you get (which all basically work the same way), there was no skulking around before the baddies saw you, or setting up traps in advance. It was just a dumb shooting gallery, after dumb confined arena, after a dumb corridor. Over and over again. The story has some majorly problematic aspects, primarily a lack of self-awareness of the historacle context it was set in, inconsistent characterisation and that wicked beast ludonarrative dissonance rears it’s ugly head more than once. It’s got plenty of beautiful backdrops, some spectacular scripted moments, but it all culminated in one key question: Why on earth did I spend so much time in this game rummaging through bins?
Sleeping Dogs – £3.72/€4.39/$6.01
Surprisingly solid Male Crime World sim. Here’s wot our man Alec thought of this back at release:
I knew exactly what I was doing without having to make conscious effort: this was pure habit. I don’t analyse my morning ablutions, for instance. Then, as it always does in This Sort Of Thing, came The Moment. The moment when it ceased to be merely a game and became My Game. The moment when Sleeping Dogs and I connected. There’s a secret to what makes this happen, in Sleeping Dogs or almost any other game of its sort.
Anodyne, Greed Corp, Incredipede & Ticket to Ride – Pay What You Want
Pay more than the average (£3.81/€4.50/$6.15 at time of writing) to also get The Bard’s Tale & Worms Reloaded. Registers on Steam.
This bundle also includes the mobile telephone versions of these games, although quite how you’re supposed to control them with a numpad or rotary dialer is beyond me. Nathan thought these things about Incredipede:
You sit. You think. You tweak. You fail – countless times, in fact. There’s a reason the level reset option is, by default, mapped to space bar – aka, the biggest key on the keyboard. Depending on the type of person you are, this aspect of Incredipede will either make you fall in love or have you tearing out your own eyes in frustration. For me, it ended up being a little of column A and a little of column B. (That is why I now wear a snazzy eyepatch.) On one hand, it was a fantastic relief to finally play a game in which the designer clearly assumed I was a human being with an IQ higher than “functionally dead and also some kind of sea urchin.” But on the other, that led to plenty of instances where I could only sit there and bang my/Quozzle’s head against a wall in vain hope that a solution would eventually fall out.
Unity of Command – £5.08/€6.80/$6.80
A boring game about men with guns, tanks, hexagons and thinking. Not my scene, but I know a bloke called Kieron who is into all those things:
So – accessible yet deep, attractive and with an AI which teaches you the core of the game by beating you around the head. Scenario play, two campaigns and even a tiny bit of multiplayer (hotseat or internet play, on a single map). It’s a hell of a wargame. But for all its charms, it’s not going to be the one which drags in a (PC) mass audience into a scenario-based hex-map wargame. And, perhaps somewhat sadly, it’s in areas where the game’s most interesting that it’s going to lose people.
Deal of the week
Batman: Arkham Asylum [Goatee Edition] – £1.87/Similar price in other currencies.
Batman: Arkham City [Goatee Edition] – £3.75/Similar price in other currencies.
Apply coupon “GMG25-GRV7N-YY833”. Registers on Steam.
These got patched to have that hideous blight GFWL removed just the other day. More like Games For Windows Dead. If you happened to buy the game from anywhere other than Steam in the past, your GFWL key should now activate on Steam, so you don’t need to buy them again. Your guess is as good as good as mine whether the upcoming sequel/prequel/filler title will live up to the standards of these two, but let me tell you, these are the best games that let you play as Batman and then punch some dudes that I have ever played. I prefered the first one, I thought that the more claustrophobic, more intimate setting of being trapped on an island with some baddies was far more tense than being in a very small city. But they’re both thoroughly enjoyable. Read RPS thoughts on Asylum here and City here.
Also of note:
Point and Click promo at GOG.
Cities in Motion 2, Duke Nukem: Manhattan Project, Impire, Perfection & XenoMiner – £3.44/€4.06/$5.56
To gorge yourself on even more cheap video games, pop along to SavyGamer.co.uk