I wrote about three games today that were, quite sadly, part of flash sales. In my pizza-birthed delirium, I made the mistake of forgetting to check if the deals would last long enough for me to transfer ownership of this column to an editor. They didn’t. So I am writing this introductory paragraph right now with my eyes carefully narrowed and a frown like thunder. Why, Gods of the Bargain Bucket, why have you forsaken me? I was aiming to introduce an authentic, one-of-a-kind Papa Moomin today as the plushie of the day, but that plan fell apart thanks to a lack of time. Instead, I am going to filch a photo from MadKatrina and show off this awesome snake on a bucket. Honestly, people, why have we not made this wonderful lady into a millionaire yet?
There is nothing to fear but F.E.A.R itself. And that scraggly-haired kid who still haunts my dreams and my curtains when I’m about to fall asleep. Good gravy. BundleStars calls it “the best horror FPS series ever,” a line that I think I want to contradict. However, there’s no mistaking the fact that the series is rather good. And terrifying. And weird, very weird. (If you’ve played the games, you probably know what I’m talking about.)
Hector: Badge of Carnage Bundle
Sometimes it’s easy to forget that Telltale have done more than those Walking Dead games that no one will ever stop talking about. Mired in the shadows of more popular franchises like Monkey Island and Sam & Max is their published Hector: Badge of Carnage Series. Our intrepid protagonist is far from the nicest chap in town. He’s a bit rotund, a bit mean, and prone towards being quite vulgar. Strictly not family-friendly, Hector won’t appeal to everyone, but those with a hunger for off-color humor will likely find a winning partner-in-crime here.
Borderlands 2: Complete Edition Bundle
I like Borderlands 2. A lot. Not because it is a particularly good game, but because it is the kind of game that you can lose hours to, because accumulating loot and talking to friends about your daily lives over the roar of plasma rifles can be astonishingly satisfying. To be fair, though, Borderlands 2 does have its moments and a stable of gung-ho female characters who will take absolutely no lip from a passing bounty hunter. (Discussion time: Is Ellie an empowering character or a cheap shot at overweight people?) I have a nagging certainty that the Complete Edition Bundle has, in fact, been cheaper at some point in the past. But, it’s here and available for those who can’t wait for the price to go even lower. Get at it?
Desktop Dungeons was a tangential obsession for me. For the longest time, it only existed in the periphery of my world, buoyed by a friend’s fanatical interest in the game. At a glance, it resembles a standard roguelike or RPG, with simplistic graphics and a horde of monsters to kill. But, Desktop Dungeons isn’t really that kind of a game. It’s built out of puzzles, carefully disguised to resemble something different. Instead of simply requesting you mash buttons, it demands tactical behaviour and careful resource management. I know it’s been cheaper before, but honestly, just buy it already. The game is excellent.
Also of note:
Kentucky Route Zero Season Pass – $12.49/£7.68/€9.64
It calls itself a “magical realist” adventure game, but the truth is that Kentucky Route Zero is just beauty incarnate. The world beneath the caves is gorgeous, faceless, and riddled with a kind of modern mysticism. To quote someone who once wrote about it, it’s the kind of experience that “sticks to your bones.”
Quantum Conundrum Bundle – $4.74/£3.74/€4.74
Is Quantum Conundrum good? I don’t know. I’ve been told repeatedly that it is, a claim that is further bolstered by the fact it was directed by Kim Swift. On the off-chance that you’re unfamiliar with the name, she’s the lady who led the design of Portal, that little-known first-person puzzle game. On top of being pretty and interesting, Quantum Conundrum also features something called the “Fluffy dimension.” How could you not want to play it?
Dungeons & Dragons Comics Sales
Dungeons & Dragons has a comic series? I’m surprised by the fact I’m surprised. I mean, it makes sense that it exists. D&D is the barbaric, brazen heart that beats at the core of so many of today’s video games, after all. And the stable of titles looks so delightful, too. I miss the days when both men and women were provocatively dressed in nothing but strategic strips of fur. (Not really. But.)