Steam Charts: Right Let’s Get This Over Edition

Some websites will fob you off with scant details about your favourite best-selling games, but not RPS. Here you will find gaming’s most insightful commentary on the leading games of the modern age.

10. Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age

This month’s years-old Final Fantasy release is only just troubling our charts. The twelve year old PS2 game will certainly scratch JRPG itches, but as Brendan reports, isn’t a stellar example in its class. The itch scratching class?

But you shouldn’t scratch itches, should you? It only makes them worse. Especially if it’s an insect bite. Oh that sweet relief of the initial scratch lies to you, as the poison swills back around and the inflammation only becomes more fiery. And then you’re scratching until it bleeds, and even then you can’t stop, and before you know it you’ve scratched a hole all the way through your arm out to the other side, and that’s when stag beetles get in. So maybe you shouldn’t play FFXII if you don’t want stag beetles living inside your arm-hole. Just something to bear in mind.

9. Slay The Spire

You know what I miss? Playing Slam. Slam was the best card game, because not only was it fast, but you also got to hit your sister and technically you couldn’t get in trouble. Now my sister’s 38 and hits me back way harder, so I can’t play Slam any more.

But I worry about you kids, with your Spire Slayer, and your Magical Gatherings, that you might have missed the purity of that most revered and respected of card games. For generations Slam was the game of choice, from the bars of the Wild West, to the gambling halls of Vegas, to the drug dens of old London town. It’d be a shame to see this great tradition lost.

8. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

Oh my goodness, can you even believe it?!?! Counter-Strike: Global Offensive has got into thezzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

7. Dragon Ball FighterZ

Well, what don’t I know about Dragon Ball FighterZ?! Goodness me, let me tell you all about it.

It’s all about a man, probably, I imagine called Jake or similar, who has a magical Dragon Ball. It’s like a Pokeball, except it has a dragon inside, that when bounced off three surfaces is UNLEASHED! This is the 26th game in the series, hence the Z in the title, although of course that doesn’t include spin-offs like Dragon Ball Fighter$, Dragon Ball Fighter¬, and 2017’s German-only release, Dragon Ball Fighterẞ.

For some slightly less useful information, here’s our review.

6. Dying Light: The Following – Enhanced Edition

Get ready, because I’m about to do a joke about how this two year old game about zombies has come back. You’ll want to prepare yourself, because it’s going to be pretty clever. All set?

Dying Light: The Following – Enhanced Edition is back from the dead!!!

Goodness me, do you see, because it’s about zombies, and zombies are humans that come back from the dead, and this is a game that was popular a couple of years ago, and now is back in the charts!

Once you’ve recovered, wiped the tears from your eyes, and gotten back up onto your seat, try to catch your breath, and I’ll explain why. It’s because the pack, including the original Dying Light, its season pass, some stupid skin pack, and the enormous The Following expansion, has all been 67% off this week. That’s ending in a matter of hours after this is posted, so if you can find the wherewithal after all that mirth, jump on it. LIKE A ZOMBIE MIGHT JUMP ON YOU!!!!!!!!

5. Kingdom Come: Deliverance

Enough people have been convinced to buy this game before they’ve read reviews (our review is coming 8am tomorrow, in time for the game’s release) to see if it’s great or a pile of stinko by the most desultory of offers: some extra pretend armour you obviously don’t need since people who don’t pre-order the game will be able to play it fine without it!

That’s all it takes! There was a time when publishers thought they had to put together extraordinary pre-order offers to trick people into spending £40 on something that might well be a steaming turd, adding in entire sections of the game unique to the gullible. They’ve since realised they just need to change the colour of a shield and announce it’s “EXCLUSIVE!”, and enough people will pay up to get the unreleased game in the charts.

I mean, sure, I’ve only spent the last two decades reviewing games with the pure purpose of advising people whether it’s worth shedding a huge chunk of their money on, to have that now be so completely undermined as to be farcical, so maybe I’m a touch bitter. But GOOD GRIEF, HUMAN BEINGS.

4. Subnautica

You know what this is a picture of? It’s a picture of a fish farting.

This is Reason #563 why Subnautica is best.

3. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt – GOTYE

Oh bloody hell, really? It’s bloody back again? It went half price for a few days, and I believe the very last people on Earth not to own a copy finally bought theirs.

So this is the last time we’ll see this in the charts, ever. And I won’t have to think of a new way to write this same tedious snark. Although I feel absolutely certain that GTA V will be back next week just in time.

2. Sid Meier’s Civilization VI: Rise And Fall

It’s tempting to argue, to myself, that the reason I write so much gibberish for the Steam Charts is the games that chart tend to be the ones I know nothing about. As I’ve chronicled many a time, the closest I’ve ever got to playing a Civ game was losing the boat battles in Civ 1 when my poor dad would let me have a go at that bit, in between looking at graphs about wheat, or whatever this weird series is about.

But then again, I’ve played Subnautica to a comprehensive level, and still just wrote a stupid not-even-a-joke about fish farts.

What I’m trying to say is, I’m sorry. I’m sorry for my whole career.

1. Plunkbat

How about a pleasingly melancholy cover of The National’s Start A War, by Dom La Nena?

61 Comments

  1. chuckieegg says:

    You see that? GTA V is missing! Only the mighty Yorkshire Gubbins could have done this. You mark my words, its time as the next Plunkbat is approaching. Soon all the world will be crushed beneath its flattened vowels. Buy a copy quick to beat the rush.

  2. Faldrath says:

    My strongest memories of Civ, even though I played them all but VI, are still losing battleships to phalanxes, and the printed technology chart that came with Civ II.

    So this means (a) I’m old, and (b) John probably caused his dad some similar memories. Boat battles were horrible.

  3. Gothnak says:

    I think you should open this column out to the community and get a different RPS reader to write the game comments each week. Should be suitably refreshing and random at the same time :)

    • Premium User Badge

      Drib says:

      Pull people from the comments section, have THEM do it. Then it’ll be an unpredictable disaster. Or a predictable one.

      • Sin Vega says:

        It would be great to read about how Plunkbat’s aunt’s neighbour made three thousand rupees an hour working free from home

      • Catterbatter says:

        “How can Valve put Subnautica on the Steam bestsellers list and leave off Hollow Knight?”

  4. Theroux says:

    You think people pre-order just for the odd thrill of being FIRST! You know, like the weirdos who line up for the new iphone, or me, who got up early today to buy tickets to a gig that will not sell-out but hey FIRST!

    • Premium User Badge

      phuzz says:

      Yes, but haven’t we all had the pain of “oh, that gig won’t sell out, I’ll pick up tickets later” becoming “what do you mean there’s no more tickets left?!”

      • juan_h says:

        Of course, but how does that apply in a world of digital downloads? “Oh no, I’d better pre-order now so that I get the game before all those other downloads wear out the server and it explodes!”

    • Ghostwise says:

      I think it’s very important to be the first, because that’s the best way to benefit from all the bugs, and all the stuff that’s not optimised yet, and all the stuff that’ll be rebalanced, and the drivers issues, and the teething problems with the servers, and….

    • punkass says:

      Aren’t we all lucky that the meme of people writing FIRST!!! on every article ever’s comments section is over.

      I’m genuinely curious as to why anyone did that? Can anyone shed any light?

      • jrodman says:

        Is it? I assumed I just had stopped reading the places where people did that.

  5. Yay_Anonymity says:

    I always enjoy the steadily increasing existential crisis in these articles.

    • nitric22 says:

      And I wonder what is says about me that Steam Charts: John Writes Words Edition is the highlight to my week. For at least six weeks running. Masochistic? Well so be it.

  6. Cryio says:

    “Get ready, because I’m about to do a joke about how this two year old game about zombies has come back.”

    Dying Light is 3 years old mate.

  7. syllopsium says:

    Just to say I have neither GTA V or The Witcher 3. Do have 1 and 2, and still haven’t played them..

    • trollomat says:

      No Witcher 3 here either, although I loved 1 and 2 and am craving for it. Have to upgrade (or replace) my 8 year old PC first, no money.

      I’m also tempted to write a lengthy comment about how the preorder thing is not a problem of HUMAN BEINGS in general, but rather one of consumerism and income distribution, but I think I’m too tired.

    • LewdPenguin says:

      I too must greatly disapoint/exasperate John in that I also lack a copy of Witcher 3, yet will someday eventually purchase one whenever I get around to getting back into 2 enough to actually finish it. But not yet, because the stars are not correctly aligned for such an event to occur.

    • wackazoa says:

      Ha! Got mine in the Black Friday sale. Enjoy there being no more left when you go to get your copy. ;p

    • Premium User Badge

      particlese says:

      Same here… Quick, everyone buy the latter this week, before CDPR’s Witching license runs out!

  8. Buuurr says:

    Kingdom Come: Bought! See you clowns in there.

    • April March says:

      The game is probably going to be, at the very least, decent, but now I’m wishing it’s bad only so I can say WHO’S THE CLOWN NOW? In fact, I’m going to wish that it isn’t even bad, it just has a lot of things that annoy you, personally, so that you can’t bear to play it, even though it’s great. There. I’m wishing.

  9. derbefrier says:

    I preordered Kingdom Come. I am a sucker for first person melee games and i wanted it and it looks awesome. Plus i am on vacation and i wanted something new to play other than Monster Hunter World(which is fantastic BTW).

    • John Walker says:

      None of these things are changed by your waiting to find out if it even works!

      • Buuurr says:

        Other sites have had hands on with it and have had nothing but good things to say (from my perspective at least) so I did the same thing.

        • John Walker says:

          It’s perhaps a touch unlikely that at a choreographed preview event, they’d show a bit of the game that was unfinished or still buggy.

          Which is why previews are not reviews, and in no sense buyers’ guides.

          • Buuurr says:

            Of course not. I do however trust the opinions of those sites far more than this one. The vast majority of them doesn’t have the manufactured outrage this site has. That, and when they say they like it, I usually do. Not so with the opinions of this site for the most part. I usually get a feeling from a group of sites and go from there. Doing it this way usually leads to something I like.

  10. Imperialist says:

    What is with the bitterness of that KCD rant?
    Its a first-person open world rpg without all the floofy magic and dragons and stuff, with a focus on realism and historical authenticity. Nobody seems to care about making games set in the high middle ages anymore…and even if its a buggy, horrid disaster, i will still support its…idea.
    Regardless, some people got their hands on it early a few days ago because some retailers slipped and let it go prematurely…and they seem to like it. So, why the hate? If anything, reserve the bile-laden commentary for CSGO and PUGB.

    • April March says:

      That was not a KCD rant, that was a preorder rant.

    • John Walker says:

      What an odd reading of what I wrote. I was talking about pre-ordering.

      • Imperialist says:

        I think it was the implied “this game will probably suck” way in which it was said that “triggered” me. The language reeked of a lack of faith, though, if this is how you are going to say you meant it…so be it. I can accept that.

        • gobbo14 says:

          You’re spot on Imperialist.. that’s exactly what John was insinuating, no matter how much he pretends he wasn’t. Just wait and see the review.

          • John Walker says:

            I’ve not played a second of the game, and at the time of writing knew zero information about whether it would release in a good enough state to purchase. So obviously had no opinion either way!

            I have persistently argued against pre-ordering for years on this site, for the same reasons, no matter the game.

            So no, you’re entirely wrong, and you might want to remember this next time you make such absolute statements based on your own imagination.

        • Cederic says:

          No, this site (and particularly this writer) has been very consistent on the ‘do not preorder’ message, which many readers also support.

          The game in question has had some controversy which may or may not be mentioned in the review, but the bias here is against giving people money without knowing whether you’ll get value.

      • Stefarooh says:

        Who cares. Let people do what they want with their money. It is theirs after all not yours. It irritates me no end when people run around trying to tell others what to do with their cash, especially when it comes to this hobby.

        Some do it for the pre-order bonuses (which I agree tend to be mostly crap), some do it because they want to always be current (and lord knows how many big AAA games seem to all be bunched together on the same release dates) , some do it because they have a large disposable income and it means nothing to them and some do it because they are fools with their money…at the end of the day do I run around with an axe to grind and in the process set my head ? NO!

        Some people have

        • John Walker says:

          It’s possible to imagine that perhaps I’ve thought through my reasoning on this, beyond a peculiar desire to control how other people spend money.

          Because while, yes, people can do as they wish with their cash, the actions of aiding a situation where publishers can rely on pushing out broken games in the knowledge that they’ll be tided over by pre-order money ensures that games continue to be released in a broken state. If people, en mass, held back their money until they’d read reviews, publishers would be forced to ensure a better quality product was released in the first place.

          Never mind that the only useful purpose of pre-ordering to the consumer was to be able to get the game posted to their house on the day of release, or reserved in their local shop so it wouldn’t sell out. As such, publishers would make review code available to magazines ahead of release so that people would know whether it was worth spending their money on in advance. All that has become meaningless in an online world. Hence the ridiculous pretend pre-order nonsense, to desperately try to maintain this source of income before the reviews can put anyone off – something I consider worth fighting against.

  11. wackazoa says:

    So anybody who has play Dragonball Z, only 1 question… Is there a Krillen owned counter?

  12. fish99 says:

    With Steam refunds there isn’t much risk in pre-ordering now. Or if, like me, you prefer to buy from key sellers pre-ordering will save you enough money that you can afford the odd stinker.

    Having said all that I don’t feel inclined to preorder KC:Deliverance.

    • Buuurr says:

      There is no risk at all actually. They give you an ample two hours to play before the return period expires.

  13. icarussc says:

    I, personally, would just like to say that I think it’s hilarious and wonderful that (a) this column is so popular and that (b) it appears to be something of an albatross around the collective neck of the staff.

    P.S. I love this column.

  14. napoleonic says:

    I don’t have Witcher 3, and never will. I hate Geralt.

  15. Glavius says:

    What’s the problem with preordering anyway? Steam gives you 2 hours of playtime to return it if it’s broken anyway. If Steam had no return policy then the preorder argument might holdup but with a return policy it really doesn’t.

    • Buuurr says:

      Yep. Just more bush whacking by the staff.

    • Throwback says:

      I think that’s a bit disingenuous. The reason NMS was happy to refund to any and all takers is because they knew the vast majority of people wouldn’t refund. Surprise surprise, they didn’t.

  16. Blastaz says:

    Which chart is this reviewing exactly? Because clicking “Global top sellers” sees Kingdom Come in 1st place (which would be worth talking about to finaly dethrone plunkbat) Rocket League in 4th (hello old friend) and TotalWarhammer 1 & 2 in 6 and 7 respectively…

    • John Walker says:

      I might just start adding this to the bottom of every column, but… it’s the internal charts from Valve for the highest grossing games of the previous week.

  17. ZachG81 says:

    Ok the ‘pre-order’ rant didn’t really make sense to me. If you want the game its either; spend $60 now, or spend $60 a few days later. What’s the difference? I get exclusive armor and can pre-load the game on my steam account to access it quicker.
    Tough bargain there.
    Really, really hard decision to make.
    Hmmm… either get two pros and pay the same price, or get no pros and pay the same price. I think my point is obvious.

    (TBH – I didn’t even know about the armor until I had already pre-ordered the game anyways)

    • Mael Milscothach says:

      Or, you know, not spending $60 at all because the game turns out to be terrible and you waited for the reviews to come out. All John was pointing out is that this is a thing you can (and, arguably, should) do.

  18. Hyena Grin says:

    Don’t worry, John.

    I’m patiently awaiting reviews for Kingdom Come before I dish out the cash.

    I mean, they did make it easy. There’s no pre-order discount to take advantage of. No significant content locked away behind the pre-order.

    I actually have to give them some credit for that second bit, the pre-order content thing is sometimes… egregious.

    And despite how interested I am in playing it if it is good, it also seems very much like the kind of game that might be making promises it can’t keep, and might fall flat on its face after a couple of hours of play. Honestly, the studio lacks the pedigree and resources to guarantee a good game. That doesn’t mean they can’t make one, I just can’t see a reason to preorder before a review appears.

    … I am not always this patient.

  19. radfoxus says:

    wtf that isn’t CS:GO pics, that’s Black Squad right?

  20. snekodinsson says:

    Hey, number nine has returned. Guess you guys find it then? Good on ya, mates.

    “…I imagine called Jake or similar, who has a magical Dragon Ball. It’s like a Pokeball, except it has a dragon inside, that when bounced off three surfaces is UNLEASHED”

    So… basically, the plot of ‘The Dark Tower’ series by Stephen King?

    Edits: good god, I have no idea how this HTML code stuff works.