Smashing shooter Crimsonland is free to play this weekend


This weekend, why not spend some time surrounded by creeping death that approaches from all sides in the form of horrid aliens and giant spiders? Sounds appealing, doesn’t it? What if I told you that you don’t even have to leave your house and that it won’t cost you a penny? SOLD, you’d say, and I’d patiently restate that you don’t need to pay anything at all.

Crimsonland, the top-down shooter that inexplicably doesn’t have a sequel (more on that shortly), is free to play via Steam right now and for the rest of the weekend. Hurrah! It’s great and you should definitely try it if you’re not allergic to Smash TV, monsters or the killing of monsters.

If you buy Crimsonland during the free weekend, which has already begun and ends Sunday evening, you’ll get an 80% discount. That makes it £2.12. You used to be able to buy a house for that in the eighties.

Now let’s turn to the subject of sequels, because the reason Crimsonland has become a freebie temporarily is part of a promotional campaign for the next game from developers 10tons. That’s coming next week and it looks very Crimsonland-y, which is to say, fast, chaotic and with lots and lots of monsters. It’s called Tesla vs Lovecraft and owners of Crimsonland get a 20% discount if they decide to buy it when it’s released on the 26th.

And they’ve made other top notch top-down shooters as well. Most recently there was Jydge, which John described as follows:

“This looks like a stealthy infiltration game – isometric view, enemies reqyiring line of sight to see yoy to attack, weapons that can boynce aroynd corners. Byt the appearance is deceptive, and this is an arcade game at its centre. It’s aboyt charging in, blowing shit yp, and getting oyt.”

He liked it a lot.


  1. davebo says:

    Oh man, I used to love this game. I’d copy the install files from computer to computer over the years. I still have them but I might just have to rebuy it for the convenience of having on steam. I even love the Learn-to-Type mode. Way bloodier than Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing.

    • valuum says:

      Double oh man, I have the exact same experience. I bought it on steam a while ago when it first came out to support them based on the hours and hours I spent back in the day. Too many games nowadays though, so I havent actually played it.

      • Malkara says:

        Wow, flash to the past, I remember playing a shareware? freeware? demo? version of this many, many years ago via a PCGamer demo disc.

  2. Urthman says:

    This game can be so great at making the upgrades and the hordes crazier and crazier so you feel both overpowered and overwhelmed without feeling at all like it’s just jiggling hit point numbers to keep the game balanced.

    And the balance will get off, you can get ridiculously swarmed and stomped to a pulp or grab the last few upgrades that make you able to clear the screen like a god, but both are hilarious or fun and then the level’s over and you go back to the beginning or on to the next one and everything’s reset so those are just fun moments rather than the whole game becoming too hard or too easy.

    I think it’s easily the best Horde Mode game I’ve ever played.

    • Baines says:

      I last played Crimsonland nearly three years ago.

      Back then, I described it as a game that had not only ignored ten years of improvements in the genre, it had actually managed to regress somewhat over its own original incarnation. It was sluggish and boring. Survival just threw everything at you at once with no rhyme or reason, making that a muddled mess. Quest mode wasn’t well balanced to certain game changes. The life bar was redundant in quest mode, as you needed to beat the level without getting hit to get the gold star. And beating a level without getting hit was itself too often tied to luck, due to how unbalanced the weapon drops were. What was originally a genre-defining classic had become a mediocre entry in a flooded market.

      The dev later replied to my negative Steam review saying that the game had since been updated to make it more like the classic version in areas (and to include the entirety of the classic game as well), but I admit that I had never gotten around to reinstalling it to play it again since then.

      In other words, I recommend anyone interested actually take advantage of this free weekend. Give the game a whirl and see how it strikes you.

      • Vodka, Crisps, Plutonium says:

        As an “old version” veteran, I had the similar conflicting impressions over this re-release (although I had played it initially on PS Vita and I was just happy to have a version of Crimsonland on my handheld)

        Bought it also for PC some time ago, went back to actually play it recently, finished the campaign in one sitting and was overall surprised how well the game felt both in terms of presenting the experience of the original game (in both Campaign and Survival modes) for the new generation of players, but also has attempted to re-balance things enough to refresh gameplay, fix old, forever bugged-out perks from the classic version and yet preserve the pace of the original game.

        Oh, and also you get to play the original version as well, if you wish so, which is very nice of the developers to make it available, so everyone can make a comparison between original and revamped versions for themselves.
        Heartly recommend this one to buy for everyone who enjoys some “crowd-control” in their shooters.

      • Don Reba says:

        The life bar was redundant in quest mode, as you needed to beat the level without getting hit to get the gold star.

        You only have to have full health at the end. Whether you retain it through the level or come within an inch of death and then regenerate doesn’t matter.

  3. onodera says:

    I still think the freeware original (the one without metal soundtrack) was better. My god, time flies, doesn’t it? I played it in December 2002, that’s 15 years ago!

  4. DEspresso says:

    In a way Crimsonland(Steam) is the sequel to the original nonsteam Version, different optics, slight gamebalance changes.. unfortunately it did not grab most people as the original did.

    Good Thing the Original Version is since included in the new one =) Still great!

    Did you know radiation will stop the reproduction of giant spiders?