The term “summer drought” is common tongue for any gamer. It’s that span of time from early June to late August when the frequency of high profile games slows down to a crawl. We are left with making horrible decisions with what to do with this free time. We could develop some sort of skill that will improve us as a person or god forbid, be social. I say nay to that!
Summertime is usually meant for the backlog the of games we haven’t played all year (I’m looking at you Dishonored!). Unfortunately, when we do this we miss out on playing even more games that get released that we will never get to or worse, ignore entirely.
To me, there is nothing more horrible than a great game played by no one. I’m doing this feature to highlight the best games that get overlooked. Here are just a handful of games that stood out this summer that you need to play. Don’t worry if I missed something, I’ve got a huge list of games that fall under this category that will get some attention soon.
Developer: Cellar Door Games
Rogue Legacy is a great game to play in bite size chunks. This 2D platformer offers addicting and challenging game play. Explore an always changing 2D castle to avenge the death of your king as one of your many many many children. In Rogue Legacy death isn’t the end, it’s progression. It’s a new take on rogue-like games that are known to be mercilessly punishing. The concept of playing as your heirs with different traits like color blindness or vertigo adds something new to each playthrough.
Why You Didn’t Play this Game
At a glance, it looks like every other goofy roguelike-metroidvania-platformer on the market.
Why You Should Play this Game
Rogue Legacy is a love letter to hardcore platformers of old without the frustration of throwing a controller at the screen. The look and feel of Rogue Legacy is charming. Seeing a dwarf knight with an over-sized sword and fart-clouds every time he jumps never gets old. Whether you play ten minutes or three hours, Rogue Legacy will have you addicted.
Somehow the idea of being an immigration inspector manning a booth at the border of the great communist state of Arstotzka doesn’t really sound that appealing. Yet, Papers, Please manages to make a game of essentially checking the accuracy of documents compelling. You job is to make sure the folks you’re admitting into your country are who they say they are and not suicide bombers. Every time you let someone through with bad documentation you get docked cash. Do it too many times and it’s game over. If you take long then you don’t make much money to bring home. If you can’t cover rent, game over. Can’t afford medicine for your family? Well guess what? They die then it’s game over. You’re put in the awful position and given power over the fate of so many poor souls just trying to survive.
Why You Didn’t Play This Game
The games description sounds painfully dull. There’s nothing sexy about checking a passport for misspellings and invalid expiration dates.
Why You Should Play This Game
Papers, Please always finds ways to have you making decisions you don’t want to make. You’ll commit racial profiling, take bribes and ruin lives. Papers, Please will stress you out in ways you didn’t think a game would. What more could you ask for?
Developer: The FullBright Company
You’re back home from a year abroad but your family is nowhere to be found… Something is wrong and its up to you to figure out what happened. Gone Home is an exploration game in the sense that the adventure is uncovering the secrets of this family going through hard times.
The story is told through journal entries by your missing sister, Samantha, and your family’s personal belongings.
All the characters are beautifully flawed in ways you can relate to. There’s a looming aura of discomfort as you explore your family’s spooky mansion. Gone Home is only about two hours long yet it manages to keep you completely enthralled in the mystery. There’s no monster chasing you or weird block puzzles. Its just a house full of secrets. Its a story about second chances, coming of age, and true love.
Gone Home manages to be a scary game without the need of jump scares. The idea of being alone in a mansion during a thunderstorm with ominous noises throughout the hallways does the trick of setting the mood. Gone Home is a spooky, touching and beautiful game.
Why You Didn’t Play This Game
Its $20 dollars for a 2 hour game in which everyone who tells you to play it can’t describe it in fear of spoiling it for you.
Why You Need to Play This Game
Gone Home has great writing and by the end of it you will feel something you didn’t expect. Assuming you’re not an robot or a Vulcan.
So what are some other games that got overlooked this summer that you guys think should get some attention? In my opinion, there’s no greater satisfaction than seeing someone enjoy a game you recommended.
With gigantic releases like GTA V or Assassins Creed IV: Black Flag it will be easy to miss out on some great games that just get overshadowed by these monolithic titles. No worries though, I’m sure to let you know what you missed. No judgments….promise.