The RPS Bargain Bucket: The Point is the Click

Have you ever sat down and thought to yourself, “Man, I’m not going to have a life when this comes out?” I’m eyeballing Everquest Next: Landmark the way a geriatric cat would monitor a drunken bird. The moment it hits? I’m pouncing. What games are you looking forward to this year, Bargain Bucket readers? I don’t get to talk to you much outside of these weekly encounters so I want to make the best out of fleeting meet-ups. (While you’re waiting to see if reality lives up to your videogaming dreams, why not take a moment to browse through this week’s Bargain Bucket of goodness?)

Humble Bundle
$5.31 /£3.22/€3.89 

Hey, look! A properly indie Humble Bundle for the PC! The tenth in the series, the latest Humble Bundle features four games I keep ranting at my friends about: To The Moon (it made John cry ) , Papo & Yo (it made other people cry), Reus (it didn’t make anyone cry but is still a properly interesting game) and Surgeon Simulator 2013 (it’d make the in-game characters cry if they woke up midway). You’d need to pay at least $5.31 in order to unlock Reus and Surgeon Simulator 2013 but I think it’s worth the opportunity to play God.

The Whispered World

Above all things, The Whispered World is tooth-achingly pretty. Really, really pretty. I’d love a TV series from these people — so long as they promise to keep the leading clown’s trap muzzled. Despite the loathsome voice acting and the sometimes ridiculously illogical puzzles, The Whispered World isn’t without its merits. The writing is mostly wonderful, the jokes mostly superb and Spot is easily one of my favorite side kicks ever. Best of all? The Whispered World is currently cheaper than a cup of tar-black coffee.

Hitman Absolution: Professional Edition
(with a bonus cameo by Hitman: Blood Money!)

I don’t know how I feel about Hitman Absolution. Mostly because it felt slightly less like a proper Hitman game and more like an attempt at … something. I don’t know what. But it isn’t terrible and, ignoring the absurd fetish nuns and how it deviates from the original formula, can be decent. Adam wrote a Wot I Think so you might want to flit over and check out what he thought before picking this one up. (Bonus 25% voucher code: GMG252-0YUM5-VKMVU)

Or, you could just, you know, buy Hitman: Blood Money for $2.24.

Tales of Monkey Island

Ah, back to more familiar seas. Have I mentioned I really, really like point & click adventure games? I continously rail against their absurdity but I love them anyway. It’s a dysfunctional relationship. You probably already knew this but Telltale Games did a kick-ass job with their continuation of the Monkey Island series. If you’ve been hankering for a reason to go back to tropics, here’s five of them. Mind the grog.

Metro 2033
$R 5.99/$2.54/£1.54/€1.86

While Metro 2033 doesn’t quite demand you keep a spare change of underwear close by, it’s still another piece of evidence supporting the hypothesis that Russians and Ukranians really know post-apocalyptic creepy. Metro 2033 isn’t perfect but it’s certainly likeable. If nothing else, the world they’ve constructed is elegantly claustrophobic. You should get it if you enjoy having mutated rat things lunge at you from the darkness.

Dominions 3: The Awakening

Dominions 3 is imposing, like all of the other Dominion games before and after it. There’s a complicated colossus of mechanics and strategies to navigate, each of which might be potentially essential to your campaign to be the one true god. Have I mentioned the absolutely insane 300 page PDF manual? Because it has a 300-page manual. Who even does that anymore? But Dominions 3: The Awakening, in spite of its eccentricities, remains something you can properly sink your teeth into. Best played with like-minded friends to ensure optimal godly bickering.

Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning

Disclaimer: I’ve never played this. I don’t know why either. I suspect it may have been because I was wrapped up in something else or transitioning between airports. But John’s dissertation on why this is something we all should have checked out and its low price tag has me convinced I should give it a spin. In case you’re utterly in the dark as to what I’m talking about (and can’t be bothered to read the article), Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning is probably best described as a single-player, action-RPG that wants to be all of the coolest RPGs in the market at once. Which sounds kind of entertaining, honestly.

Note: Discount is only for US residents.

Also of note: 

Deus Ex: Game of the Year Edition – $1.74
I’m absolutely smitten with Deus Ex: Human Revolution yet everyone tells me it doesn’t hold a candle to the original. As such, I’m picking this up. I didn’t need the extra cup of coffee, anyway.

Torchlight 2 – $4.99/£3.74/€4.74
Pew pew pow pew
! Torchlight 2 is a whirlwind of colors and particle effects. It’s also an excellent ARPG that doesn’t try to be anything more than a conduit for obsessive-compulsive hoarding.

Back to the Future: Season 1 – $3.74
Did you know that Dr. Brown is voicing Dr. Brown in this adventure? Well, you do now. It’s a decent tribute to the movies.

Borderlands: Game of the Year Edition – $4.99
Borderlands might be ancient in the eyes of many but there’s no denying that it’s excellent co-op fun. There’s a 90% chance most of you already own both Borderlands and Borderlands 2, but just in case you don’t? It’s going for 83% off on GameFly right now.  (Note: Discount is applicable for US residents only.)

As always, I’d love for you to send in any tips you might have about upcoming deals. Also, photos of plushies in buckets. Don’t you want your favorite stuffed animal to make an appearance on the front page? Hmmm? Don’t you? (This week’s plushie is a counterfeit Wailmer from a store in Singapore’s Vivocity. He scores 6/10 in cuddliness.)


  1. grimdanfango says:

    I’ve been waiting for this game long before it was conceived. Ever since the Settlers games stopped being Settlers games and became cutesy war games.

    • BTAxis says:

      I’m possibly even more hopeful for Stonehearth, but that’s assuming the finished product will be anything like the mockups and promises made on the kickstarter. It’s too soon to tell there, but IF it achieves that level of quality then I will be most happy.

      • grimdanfango says:

        It certainly looks interesting, but for me personally it focuses on all the same things that I dislike about any other town-builder. Build beautiful towns, build a working economy, because LOTS OF BATTLES AND WAR!

        I specifically love the idea of Banished because the enemy, the *only* enemy, is the elements. You build to survive the winter, not to defeat the invading armies.

        Even Settlers 1 had battles, but it was most definitely secondary to the joy of building up your town, and just watching it work. That said, because even in Settlers, the objective was inevitably to “win”, it still didn’t have any real goal besides beating other tribes.

        Banished looks like that one-game-in-a-million for my personal tastes. I’m really hoping I’m not over-hyping it to myself :-)

        (Edit: I know the Anno games are essentially “build-for-the-sake-of-building”, and I have enjoyed them, but ultimately I find them way too rigid. Every game requires the exact same buildings in the exact same quantities, laid out in an optimal way. They just don’t give that feeling of fighting to survive with whatever limited resources you have available)

        • BTAxis says:

          I can definitely see that. I don’t mind having combat in my city builders though, so long as it doesn’t degenerate into a thinly veiled base building RTS.

          I tend to prefer having a goal when building my city, and raising an army can be such a goal. To date the city builder I’ve most enjoyed was Zeus: Master of Olympus, which gave you all kinds of tasks to perform with your cities. Though it was still lots of fun watching the cities work, there was nevertheless a certain satisfaction to be had in meeting your goals and moving on to the next scenario to begin anew.

          • DragonOfTime says:

            I can attest to that. Zeus was amazing. It also holds up really well and I still play it occasionally, I bought it on GOG because I lost my original disc and can definitely recommend everybody to do the same.

    • Bent Wooden Spoon says:

      Whilst I fully agree with you, I’m wondering where in the abject fuck this conversation started.

      Are we all in the right thread?

      • Ich Will says:

        “What games are you looking forward to this year, Bargain Bucket readers? I don’t get to talk to you much outside of these weekly encounters so I want to make the best out of fleeting meet-ups.”

        • grimdanfango says:

          That’s the one. I realised after posting that perhaps that little invitation wasn’t quite intended to be the focus of discussion… but well, Banished is tenuously on-topic… it’s coming out at only $20, which in my book makes it an incredible bargain worthy of anyone’s bucket!

          • Cassandra Khaw says:

            (I think Horace ate my comment.. Reposting. u__u)

            The reference to the bucket was delightful. All hail the bucket! Honestly, I’m happy with the discussion. Banished somehow didn’t quite enter my radar and I’m now deathly excited for it. But more than that, I like being able to get a better read on what everyone enjoys just so I can keep an eye out for relevant things to put it. (Plus, it’s exciting to hear more than “THIEF THIEF THIEF OMG THIEF”, y’know?)

  2. daphne says:

    ‘Man, I’m not going to have a life when this comes out?’

    Ah, the joys of being able to live free of financial responsibility…

    • Cassandra Khaw says:

      I miss those days too. I’ll miss what little I have of a social life when Landmark comes out, though. :C

  3. CookPassBabtridge says:

    Does that fish have a massive grin, or that just its lovely cod fillet underbelly?

    Now I want to go for a swim. Or have fish & chips.

    • Prolar Bear says:

      Or play COD.

      • Shadowcat says:

        Pisces what you did there.

        • Koozer says:

          Wailmer minute guys, I think it’s a Pokemon.

          • Tams80 says:

            This is not the pokémon you are Seaking.

          • raggnarok says:

            Actually, that is not a wailmer. It’s a wailord.
            And yes, I went through yet another (surprisingly not so) awful registration process just to say this. I might have some kind of OCD or something of the sort…

            Cassie, please take good care of it. It’s cute as hell and almost makes me cry like a little kid who fell on the pavement.
            wow i have so many flaws

          • Rizlar says:

            Someone make a raggnarok cuddly toy so we can give it a hug! I’m sure you’re not the only oddish one around here anyway…

    • Shadowcat says:

      …and did you actually take it on an outing to get that photo? That’s awesome :)

      (The other option would seem to be that you flooded your kitchen, so hopefully it’s not that.)

      • Cassandra Khaw says:

        There’s a pool in my apartment. I went out earlier today and spent about ten minutes furiously trying to balance and/or shoot the plushie. The kids there looked tickled. >_>

        • AngelTear says:

          Did you emphatically shout “For Journalism!” while you were doing it? I’m sure they’d have understood it was for a very important cause.

          • The Random One says:

            Cassandra: For Journalizm!
            Kids: *stare dumbfounded*
            Cassandra: …and videogames!
            Kids: YAAAAAAAAAAAAY

        • thedosbox says:

          You really shouldn’t spoil the plushie choice on twitter. Guessing is part of the fun.

        • Temple says:

          SPOILER WARNING!!!
          I don’t want to see behind the curtain, wait I did want to know about the Alpaca (and I am thankful for the rps readership for introducing me to Weebl). Gah, it is like there are no hard and fast rules. Definitely not checking out twitter though if you are letting the plushie out of the bag early.

          • Cassandra Khaw says:

            Oh, god. I genuinely do feel bad about that. It was a throwaway comment because the whole notion of what I was about to do tickled me pink. I’ll make sure not to spoil the plushie choices next week. D: (Also, I will have a little, silly surprise as compensation.)

      • CookPassBabtridge says:

        Also wasn’t there a Bargain Bucket Foxer a while back? A red upside down cat that we had to link to some cultural reference … what was the answer?

        • Cassandra Khaw says:

          Hah. XD I can’t remember my exact reasoning on that one but it has something to do with the fact I’m East Asian and that was a maneki neko. (Cat, not a fox. :3)

          • Gap Gen says:

            “Foxer” after Tim Stone’s weekly puzzle in the Flare Path column.

          • CookPassBabtridge says:

            Indeedy. They need their own name I think, like Bucket Bamboozler or Cassandra’s Cuddly Conundrum

  4. Scumbag says:

    Madame, with these cute bucket animals you are really spoiling us.

    • Prolar Bear says:

      The More You Know: it’s not an animal, it’s a pokémon

      • skalpadda says:

        Pokemon aren’t animals? I mean, I know they’re fictional and all but aren’t they fictional animals?

        • BTAxis says:

          They’re “monsters”, which I’m inclined to believe doesn’t count as animals.

          • Blackcompany says:

            You are correct. Skyrim’s creation kit clearly separates all members of the game’s bestiary by type using keywords. The keyword “Creature” is used to denote non-animal monsters. The keyword “Animal” is used to denote normal, non-fantasy type animals of the relatively harmless variety.

            Clearly, this means that, in point of fact, animals and monsters are definitively two completely separate types of being.

        • AngelTear says:

          As far as I know, Professor Oak has yet to publish his paper concerning the proper taxonomy of Pokemons, but preliminary research shows they’re somewhat akin to living advertisement.

  5. MuscleHorse says:

    Unless I’m missing something, Kingdoms of Fantasy Land isn’t discounted that heavily: Gamefly says it’s £10. I’d pick it up if the article’s price were correct.

    • malexmave says:

      Same here, would love to grab it at 5 €, but at a roughly converted 12 €…

      • malexmave says:

        It is also highly impolite that they won’t even let you purchase using a proxy. I mean, damn, why do I have that US VPS? Most vendors are content with paying lip service to region restrictions (aka “checking the IP address”), but they actually go to the trouble of checking your paypal billing address. Well, I’m not paying triple just because I am not from ‘Murica.

        Has anyone checked what you get after the purchase? Because if it’s a Key I can ask a friend from the US…

    • Cassandra Khaw says:

      Weird! Looks like it might be for US only? Hola apparently likes screwing with my head. I’ll update to match. *frowns*

    • AngoraFish says:

      Stay away from Gamefly. Almost certainly the most US-centric, region-enforcing digital retail bar none.

  6. instantcoffe says:

    I can only find Kingdoms of Amalur with 50% off, making it 10£.
    Also, it seems to require Origin.
    Knowing that the devs are out of the game, I’m starting to wonder if it’s worth getting it.

    • Baines says:

      I think only the Steam version only requires Steam, and everyone else sells the Origin version. But the Steam version (licensed directly with the studio) was caught up in the whole bankruptcy thing, which is why it never saw discounts for so long, while everyone else discounted (the Origin version) repeatedly.

      Amazon was working on a deal that would get the Steam version discounted for a sale, and was supposed to get the ability to sell Steam keys in return. The deal went through enough for Valve to have a sale on Steam, but Amazon never offered the Steam version, and the Amazon guy at CheapAssGames went silent about the whole effort. It seems like either the Amazon part of the deal fell through for some reason, or Amazon was cut out of the deal by the other parties.

    • Chaz says:

      Well considering you can pick it up for £4.99 on Amazon right now or £6.99 or so inc P&P, then no, that £10 sale price isn’t worth it.

      • Cassandra Khaw says:

        Huh. I actually checked and it’s telling me that it’s going for $17.99. Which item are you examining? I’d love to add a note about that.

        link to

        • Donkeyfumbler says:

          That’s because it’s the UK site (hint: the fact that he’s talking about £ and not $ is a bit of a giveaway). I realise that RPS is now supposedly an international site rather than a British one, but at the moment it seems that trying to cover all of the various markets (from wherever you are based) just means that there are more errors and we can’t trust any of the prices.

          • Cassandra Khaw says:

            I probably should have predated that comment with a reference to the fact I was using Hola. *grumbles* It’s a slow trudge uphill. I’m still working on learning all the various sites’ idiosyncrasies. Hopefully this pricing inconsistency won’t persist.. So, bear with me please. m(._.)m

  7. AngelTear says:

    But, is there a game that is so good/bad, that even if you don’t have friends/a life, when you start (not?) playing it you suddenly find a lover, friends and you go out a lot?

    Cause I’d buy a dozen copies of that.
    In the meantime, I’ll concentrate on getting more plushies. (Thanks for your link last week, Cassandra <3)

  8. Bull0 says:

    Kingdoms of Amalur and Torchlight 2 are well worth your time and money

  9. trjp says:

    We’ve talked about Kingdoms of Amalur a lot here (forums) and the consensus is that there’s fun to be had but…

    a – it’s as generic as toilet paper in the story/character department
    b – it has FAR too many grindy missions and FAR too much content overall – all of which will sap your will to proceed.

    The general feeling is that you pick a class you like and then just stick to the main story and leave everyone else languishing (see the infamous Penny Arcade cartoon for the general idea) – completism will drive you insane.

    • Yosharian says:

      Attempting to see infamous PA comic. Error: comic not found.

    • Bull0 says:

      In terms of problems to have with a game, “too much content” is one of the better ones.

      • Yosharian says:

        Not if the content is fucking boring to do (e.g. Skyrim’s endless radiant side quests)

      • Rizlar says:

        It’s a real problem in Amalur though.

        I started playing it having read John’s warnings already but curiosity got the better of me and I found myself totally finishing a couple of inconsequential zones. After that I found it hard to re-focus on the main story, since it’s mostly more of the same monster-bashing, and haven’t picked the game up since. :'(

        So yeah – try just doing the main quests and you may make it to the end!

      • mwoody says:

        The problem is not really that is has too much content, per se, it’s that it has a very vertical leveling scheme, further evidence of its mmo roots. There’s so much content that even doing a part of it will leave you massively, game-breakingly overpowered. No enemy in the game had a hope of killing me about 30 hours in (around when I gave up), and I skipped entire zones in a desperate attempt to stop what was happening.

    • fish99 says:

      To be fair, every time KoA is discussed there’s always plenty of people who loved the game, and enjoyed the world/story, me included. As for being too long, it’s entirely up to you how many side quests you do. It’s about half the length of Skyrim (not including radiant quests).

    • Jenks says:

      I don’t mind games with actual grinding, I love old school JRPGs.

      KoA is a different kind of grinding, the kind that you do in modern MMOs. The kind where you do extremely easy, meaningless tasks for a bunch of people standing still with punctuation over their heads. Incredibly boring, I’d steer clear unless you enjoy the method of progression in post WoW MMOs.

      • fish99 says:

        The grinding you do in MMOs is just for XP though, whereas in Amalur you have a fully voiced quest and you’re doing it to tell that particular little story. The main difference though is (tradition hotkey) MMOs have no gameplay to speak of, the characters just stand there waving sword at each other 10 ft apart while you watch damage numbers float up the screen, whereas in Amalur the combat has weight and feel to it, and you can see your blows connect. There’s movement and timing (even if it does get too easy).

        I don’t know how much of it you played, but I found the stories of the side quests at least as interesting as Skyrims (not talking about the radiant quests, but the actual side missions).

  10. Yosharian says:

    I’m checking the date, and it’s the 11th, yet this Kingdoms of Amaloony game thing appears to be £9.99 rather than the £3.03 advertised in this here article. I feel misled.

    • Squirrelfanatic says:

      Check the discussion on this topic above. Apparently this price is only valid for US customers, the site checks your billing address to determine your assumed location. It’s also noted in the article now.

  11. Yosharian says:

    I found Kingdoms on for £4.93 which is a reasonable deal I suppose, but not quite the magic 3 quid price point that originally got me interested.

    link to

    Plus, not sure how reliable this G2A website is.

    Honestly thought this game looks pretty bland and average.

  12. CookPassBabtridge says:

    Dear Cassandra

    As RPS foremost plushie expert, please please please can you consider leading the charge on getting Horace plushies to market? They don’t have to be infinite, they can just be in two bits joined by velcro to simulate infinity when you peel them apart and stick them on opposite sides of the room or something.

    You would all become rich overnight and millions of happy RPS’ers would contentedly snuggle Horace’s roundy headed furzeliness, bringing world peace.

    Kickstarter Horace plushie page! Have my money :)

    • Blackcompany says:

      +infinity on Horace plushies. And I agree…the plushies themselves having necessarily finite limits aren’t an issue. I understand that while Horace is endless, his plushie spawn would necessarily require finite limitations in order to fit in our abodes (and also the mail man’s box).

    • Noburu says:

      Holy shit I would buy one in an instant. My daughters would love a stuffed Horace.

    • FriendlyFire says:

      You need to think harder!

      What you do is have a front plushie and a back plushie, both sold separately, and then you sell a “midriff section” with a mention on it that says to ONLY attach to either a front part, a back part or another midriff section.

      This way, Horace is truly infinite, it’s just that people haven’t bought enough midriff plushies to complete him :)

      (And if they attach a midriff to both the front and the back, they’re violating the Horace hypothesis)

      • The Random One says:

        I like that idea, except that there shouldn’t be a back plushie. The back plushie should be only sold after enough midriff plushies have been sold, enough in this case being infinite.

        Also I like the idea that RPS readers would be willing to by a featureless brow-haired cylinder with velcro on both sides if they were told it was Horace’s Midriff, like it was a holy relic. Maybe if enough people bought it RPS wouldn’t have to rely on MALE GAMERS CRIME WORLD ONLY ads.

        • Shadowcat says:

          Yes, RPS should just sell mid-sections. Ideally each section would be pretty long, but manageable for one person. Then at the annual Horace Assembly, everyone brings their mid-section (RPS provides the front and/or back), and we find out how long a Horace they can make!

      • CookPassBabtridge says:

        The midriffs would be like Horace chops, which takes us back to The Trauma Of The Christmas Vultures.

        I reeeeeally actually do want a Horace plushie though :) I am almost tempted to find someone who makes plushies and commission myself a Horace if I can’t get one.

        Also you NEED a back section because HORACE ‘TOCKS link to

      • Shadowcat says:

        You could enforce this with magnetic connections, you know :) You just need the front and back connections to share the same polarity.

      • Llewyn says:

        (And if they attach a midriff to both the front and the back, they’re guilty of Horasy)


  13. melnificent says:

    “Discount is only for US residents.” NO Oceans :(

  14. Max.I.Candy says:

    Just saw Defiance for £3.48 on
    I think thats well worth the price just to have a bit of co op fun to kill some time. And the good thing is you dont really have to care too much about levelling up in that game.

  15. Beebop says:

    … new US focused bargain bucket sends me fleeing back to Savygamer. Honestly don’t know why you bother anymore.

  16. gwathdring says:

    That whale is incredibly adorable.

  17. jarowdowsky says:

    Was I wrong in thinking RPS is a UK focused website? Fair enough if it isn’t but if it is then some clarity around discount links would be nice.

    • Gap Gen says:

      They normally try to make it clear which discounts are available where, but yeah, it’s not 100% for subjects of King David the Babyfaced.

  18. kalirion says:

    Dungeon of Elements looks decent for $1. Comes with DRM Free download, Desura key, and Steam key if greenlit. Linux, Mac and Windows all covered.

  19. Uglycat says:

    KoM:R desperately needs a sale for the DLC as it’s always full price.

  20. Reginald XVII Archduke of Butts says:

    I ended up buying Kingdoms of Amalur based on John’s Recommendation. It’s honestly one of the best WRPGs I’ve played in years. There’s so much to do and it’s all really fun. It tends to be what I play when I need a break from Dark Souls.

    I don’t really understand what people mean about it being generic. I normally hate the fantasy genre, which typically reads as if it’s written by someone with an unhealthy fascination for Tolkien and Feudalism.

    Instead, Amalur gives a world that’s superficially colourful and cheerful, but deeply weird, very violent and a little unsettling at its core. About the only thing that feels similar to me is the French game Wakfu.

    • fish99 says:

      That was my experience with KoA as well, I found the world a breath of fresh air after the gritty realism of Skyrim, and I got genuinely immersed in the world and all the little stories. It also has a good variety of scenery as you move across the map which keeps things fresh, and a great soundtrack.