5 Indie Games to Pick Up This Steam Summer Sale
It is officially that time of year! We have all been waiting for Steam to launch their annual summer sale, as this is the time of year that we can empty our wallets and sign our paychecks directly over to Steam. For me personally, this is really the only time of year I buy PC games, outside of a few exceptions here and there. This is the time of year that allows me to stock up on games, many of which I may have not tried when faced with paying full retail. The Steam Summer Sale allows you to pick up games between 25%-75+% off of their normal price, giving you serious incentive to pick up games that you have been skeptical of trying at over $10. The most expensive game on this list at full price is Gone Home, which is listed at $20 normally. If you keep your eyes open and check Steam often enough, you should be able to find it for $5 or less, which turns a great deal and fun experience into a steal, and one that cannot be passed up for that price.
#5 – Super Meat Boy
I’m going kick off my list with one of the most difficult games I have ever played. Created by Edmund McMillen and Tommy Refenes and developed by Team Meat, Super Meat Boy is a throwback to the controller breaking platformers of the past. Wining Most Challenging Game from IGN in 2010 and selling more than 1 million copies (as of January 2012), Super Meat Boy is a frustratingly fun adventure with beautiful graphics, precise controls and a colorful cast of characters and locales. Full of replay value, Super Meat Boy is a steal at $4 or under, giving you a ton of levels, collectibles and unlockables. On top of a ton of content, this game has a brilliant soundtrack that you can jam out to while you try for the millionth time to “A+” that one final level you’ve been stuck on for hours. It takes a certain kind of player to enjoy the level of frustration Super Meat Boy offers at times. If you grew up playing games like Ghosts N’ Goblins and Contra, and enjoyed the insane difficulty of those games, you will get a ton of value out of Super Meat Boy. Keep an eye out for Super Meat Boy to go on sale for $3.50 or less.
#4 – Gone Home
Gone Home was one of my favorite indie games of 2013, and brings a very unique adventure experience. Released by the Fullbright Company and released by members of the team who worked on Bioshock 2, Gone Home is game that must be experienced to be fully understood. Described as a first person interactive story, Gone Home takes place in the Pacific Northwest in the summer of 1995. You play as Kaitlin, who is returning home for the first time since her parents and sister moved. You explore this foreign home full of nostalgic items for both Kaitlin and the player. While Gone Home may only be a 3-4 hour experience, it is one that cannot be missed. There is no action, but the environmental effects make you feel as though you are not alone, possibly even exploring a haunted house at times. While not scary, the tone of the game can be a bit unnerving. Keep an eye for this gem and pull the trigger when you see it between 66%-75% off, for as low as $5.
#3 – Organ Trail
Remember that feeling you had in grade school when it was time for computer class? Everyone would flock to the computers that had Oregon Trail on them, and would spend as much time as possible trying to venture out west. Created by Ben Perez, Michael Block and Ryan Wiemeyer, Organ Trail is described as a retro zombie survival game that parodies the education games from our childhood. Now, you can recreate these feelings of nostalgia. Instead of heading west trying to reach the coast and settle with your family, you are trying to survive the zombie apocalypse. Featuring a very similar play style to the original Oregon Trail, Organ Trail has you fighting the zombie hoard, all while trying to keep your friends and family alive. Will you make it out west? Will Becky die of dysentery (or more likely, a zombie bite)? Keep an eye out for this game, as you should be able to pick it up for around $2.50 or less if you catch it on a flash sale.
#2 – Papers, Please
‘Papers, Please’ is far away my most played indie game from 2013. So much so that I wrote an entire article on it, which can be found here. Categorized as a dystopian document thriller and created by Lucas Pope, ‘Papers, Please’ gives you a firsthand look into the life of an immigration officer located in the fictional country of Arstotzka. Featuring branching story arcs and a number of different endings, ‘Papers, Please’ is full of replayability. You should be able to pick this up for $4.99, or even as low as $2.50 if you are able to catch it on a flash sale. If you get only one game on this list, ‘Papers, Please’ is most likely going to give you the most value for your dollar. As always: Glory to Arstotzka!
#1 – The Stanley Parable
Rounding out my list at #1 is The Stanley Parable. Another adventure game on this list that features no real action, The Stanley Parable was originally developed as a mod for Half Life 2. The version available on Steam is an updated version that is extremely polished and includes new story elements not available in the mod. This game was developed by William Pugh, The Stanley Parable is one of the most unique experiences I have had playing an indie game. Every playthrough offers you a hilarious experience that is fueled by the narrator, who is voiced by Kevan Brighting. This game is the quintessential example of the power of decision making in modern video games. The Stanley Parable breaks nearly every expectation you may have about games, and allows for amazing lines of dialogue for doing things such as hanging out in a closet for an extended period of time, or clicking on room 430. It encourages you to try everything and really gets you to experiment in ways that other games can’t. Look to find The Stanley Parable for $4.99 or less. It is worth every penny.
What games have you picked up during this year’s Steam Summer Sale? What indie games are you currently playing? Let me know in the comments below!