Did you enjoy that big rush of videogames over the last month or two? I sure hope so, because this is where things start to slow down. There’s nothing at all of value coming out this week, and nothing I’ve even heard of aside from the new ‘Jaws’ game, which I won’t even dignify with a write-up. Games miss the point of ‘Jaws’. It’s not about the shark. It was never about the shark. It’s about the men.
Instead of trudging through descriptions of games that you won’t buy or play (I hope not, anyway), I’m going to highlight a few lesser known games from 2011 that you may have missed.
Bastion (360, PC)
‘Bastion’ is an action RPG that blew me away the first time I played it. The game is simple enough that you can get the hang of it pretty easily, and the variety of enemies and obstacles keeps you on your toes. But the thing that really sets the game apart is its narrator. The gruff-but-friendly voice that talks about the adventures of “The Kid” helps to draw me into the world, and makes me want to try new things just to see what he’ll say. You can pick up ‘Bastion’ on XBLA or Steam.
The Humble Indie Bundle (PC)
I mention this set-up as often as I can, not only because it’s a crazy good deal, but because it’s for a great cause as well. You pay what you want for four games and get another two for free if you beat the average price paid. Right now, the average is at $3.75, so there’s no reason you shouldn’t be able to beat that. Money goes to the developers, the Humble Bundle organization and to Child’s Play and the Electronic Frontier Foundation. You can split that out however you like when paying.
Indie Royale (PC)
That’s right, more indie PC games. Why? Because they’re awesome. Indie Royale lets you get a handful of games at a nice low price. They also make a game out of buying. There’s a minimum price that starts low and goes up every time someone pays the minimum. If you pay more than the minimum, you knock the price down. The “Really Big Bundle” goes on sale today. I’ve already preordered it sight unseen, but the first bundle was very much worth the purchase.
DLC Quest (360)
PC is where innovative and clever games thrive while the Xbox Indie Games marketplace tends to be filled with more shovelware and clone games than you can shake a stick at. That’s clearly a lot of games, since shaking a stick is actually pretty easy. ‘DLC Quest’ is an exception to this rule. The crappy games rule, not the stick-shaking. At the beginning of the game, there isn’t any sound or animation, you can’t jump and you can’t move left. Once you get some money, you can buy DLC that unlocks these features. I won’t ruin it for you, but the very last piece of DLC that lets you beat the game is hilarious – especially if you’ve been playing the 360 since the beginning.