July 15th, 2012 | By Dominic Tarason
If three is the magic number, then four must be something extra special. It’s the fourth day of Summer sales over on Steam, and this means that a metric ton of indie games are going to be very cheap, although usually for only one day at a time. IGM are here to help you pick out the wheat from the chaff while the daily deals are active.
Today’s Individual Deals:
- Serious Sam 3: BFE – 75% off – A throwback to an era where the first-person shooter was about moving fast, carrying more guns than most battleships, and fighting hundreds of weird and wonderful pan-dimensional monsters, instead of a million seemingly suicidal guys with AK-47s. A little more restrained than the overtly wacky previous entries in the series, but still a fantastic-looking game, and exponentially more fun in co-op.
- Trine 2 – 75% off – The original Trine was excellent. The sequel is even better – an astonishingly pretty platform puzzle adventure which actually gets deeper and more complex as you add friends. With one player, you’re free to switch between the three playable characters to solve puzzles and navigate the levels. With three players, you need to act as a team to overcome each others limitations and use your strengths to move forwards as a team.
Today’s Flash Deals – They’ll Be Gone Soon!
- Q.U.B.E. – 75% off - 5 hours and counting down on this one. – It looks like Portal, but it’s really more of a classic block-shifting spatial puzzle in 3D space. No story here, no sassy narrators and no goal other than solving puzzles. It looks great, has some interesting challenges and is neither too short nor too long. Good value.
- The Legend of Grimrock – 60% Off – 5 hours and counting down on this one. This was one of the daily deals earlier in the sale, and honestly has earned the encore. It’s a beautiful, well designed and unashamedly old-school bit of first-person dungeon crawling with a lot of brain-crunching puzzles mixed in with simple-but-tense realtime combat. If you grew up playing Dungeon Master, this is the closest thing you’ll find to a modern remake.
- Magicka – 75% Off – 3 hours and counting down on this one. One of those special co-op games where your friends are as deadly as your enemies. A clever take on the isometric arcade shooter. Rather than play as burly men with guns, you control wizards. You assemble your spells on the fly by combining elmental symbols, and then let fly. Lightning spells leap between targets, while a rainstorm will stop enemies from trying the same trick. This deal includes all the DLC except for the most recent expansion.
- Killing Floor – 75% Off – 11 hours and counting down on this one. Contrary to popular belief, Killing Floor is what inspired Left 4 Dead, and not the other way round. KF was originally a mod for Unreal Tournament 2, and was later adopted by Red Orchestra developers Tripwire for the commercial treatment. Continually expanded (and for free!) since launch, and wrapped in an aggressively grungy, grindhouse-esque art style, this is slower and more tactical than L4D while being all the more brutal.
- A Valley Without Wind – An interestingly divisive one, this. An ambitious take on the 2D, procedurally generated platformer by AI War developers Arcen Games. It really should still be considered a work-in-progress, as major new gameplay elements are still being added in patches, and a kickstarter funding drive is happening soon to produce a whole new official art style for it to replace the rather awkward ’3d clip-art’ style it has going on right now.
- Atom Zombie Smasher – A zombie game, yes, but far more abstract than most. You’re commander of a force tasked with evacuating an entire country while fighting back a zombie plague – unfortunately, you only have one small evac chopper and a scattered handfull of troops and guns to fight the undead with. Failure is acceptable, although not inevitable. You have to make some tough calls in this one. Sometimes, it’s better to bomb twenty civillians than let a single zombie get to a crowd of fifty.
- Blocks That Matter – A clever and very charming puzzle-platformer with a very silly plot: The creators of Minecraft and Tetris have teamed up to create an environmentally-friendly puzzle-solving robot that can mine blocks, and then reassemble them into Tetris-like shapes. Lengthy, tough and with a catchy soundtrack.
- Sanctum – FPS meets Tower Defense. It does just what it says on the tin, really. Just imagine Defense Grid, but instead of raining death from above via an orbital laser to defend your base from rampaging alien hordes, you’re right there up on the front-lines with a variety of guns. Simple, compelling fun and designed to be played with up to four players in co-op. Has a lot of quite worthwhile DLC, too.
- Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery - The iOS point-and-click adventure hit come to PC with some tweaks and a mouse-driven interface. Mixing mystical monomyth with self-aware hipsterisms and a semi-abstract but very charming pixel-art style, there’s a lot to like here. The music is especially great, with the game actually describing itself as an interactive EP. It’s definitely more game than music video, but there’s some nice tunes to hum along to.
Good deals today, along with a couple of returning bits. There seems to be a focus on co-op games, so bring a friend and things get even better. As with the previous Winter sale, the previous days core deals are available for a few hours more, so snap them up if you missed any you wanted.
A bit of advice: As with all big Steam sale events, if something you want isn’t a daily deal today (or you missed out on the day that it was) then put it on your wishlist and hold onto your cash until the final ‘encore’ day of deals. You never know what’ll be featured! Shop smart, and you’ll come away from this with a fat sack of games to last you until Winter. And then the cycle begins all over again. Ain’t gaming great?