With summer having officially arrived, that can only mean one thing – time to spend all (or most) of your hard-earned dollars on tons of steeply discounted games, all thanks to Steam.
The Steam Summer Sale has once again made its return onto desktops everywhere and is offering yet another chance for gamers to pick up and play tons of titles on the cheap. Of course, with the staggering library of games that Steam offers, figuring out what to get (especially on a limited budget) can be a bit of a challenge. Thankfully, that’s where we come in.
In celebration of the Steam Summer Sale’s return, several of the DualShockers staff made their picks for some of their favorite titles (and some great deals) you can grab during the sale, with each writers’ picks totaling no more than $20.
The Steam Summer Sale is running now through July 5th, 2017 – for a look inside some of our personal favorite picks from the sale that won’t break the bank, read on below.
Tomas Franzese, Staff Writer
The three games I think you should pick up in the Steam Summer Sale for under $20 are Game Dev Tycoon, Age of Empires II HD, and 1001 Spikes. Game Dev Tycoon is an addictive simulation game that puts you into the role of a game developer, and is great if you have a wild imagination when it comes to thinking up concepts for games. I have sunk tons of hours into it myself, so I couldn’t recommend it more.
Age of Empires II HD, on the other hand, is a remaster of an RTS PC classic. I actually didn’t pick it up until last year, but I’ve had blast with it and played it regularly since then: you can also pick up all of the game’s expansions for a decent price. The original Age of Empires is even getting remastered later this year, so this is a great time to get into the series. If neither of those games are your thing, 1001 Spikes from Nicalis is also on sale. It’s an expertly-designed and challenging 2D platformer that’s a steal at any price, but hey – the extra discount is nice.
Jordan Loeffler, Staff Writer
Darkest Dungeon ($9.99, reg. $24.99)
Darkest Dungeon isn’t just any roguelike RPG. In most dungeon crawlers, you go adventuring, get something new and powerful, and your characters become more powerful as a result. In Darkest Dungeon your party can actually get weaker. In fact, it’s very likely they’ll be out of action for a few in-game days (or forever!), dealing with the stresses of delving into the dark depths of madness.
Darkest Dungeon utilizes Eldritch Horror tropes to tell the story of a flawed band of heroes: that means over the course of the game, your party is going to get brutalized with the disease, horror, and downright stresses of fighting evil. With an interesting art style and brilliant narrator to match its tone, Darkest Dungeon is an honest and ridiculous dive into the oft-ignored psyche of video game characters. It’s clever, creepy, sometimes funny, and absolutely worth whatever Red Hook Studios is charging for it, especially at $9.99 during the Steam Sale.
Azario Lopez, Staff Writer
I think more people would be into niche Japanese games if they had a small list of great titles that they didn’t know about. The games I picked cover some of my favorite Japanese genres, turn-based RPGs, visual novels, and action RPGs. If you haven’t taken the chance to give these genres a chance, here is one of the best and cheapest opportunities to do that.
Ryan Meitzler, Features Editor
Having survived several Steam sales at this point – mostly meaning that my bank account has survived, that is – the one aspect of Steam’s Summer Sale that I always enjoy is the chance to experiment and try out games that I never would have before. Given that I’ll be more inclined to try out a game that I’m not sure that I’ll like if it’s heavily discounted, some of my absolute favorite titles of the past few years were ones that I happened to have picked up while they were discounted in the Steam sale, and make up my recommendations up above.
To start off my $20 worth of picks, I’d easily start out with The Talos Principle. I knew incredibly little going in to the game what to expect (other than a few friends raving about it), and while I expected a quirky, immersive puzzle game like Portal, what I instead found was a profound and incredibly engrossing brain twister that is still one of my all-time favorite PC titles that I’ve ever played.
At only $10, it’s an absolute steal worth grabbing if you need something to pick your brain at, and it’s a lengthy experience that’s easily worth coming back to time and time again. Bonus – the game’s Road to Gehenna expansion is also available for $3.74, in case you already finished the original or want to augment the incredible, philosophical experience that awaits you.
Aside from that, the one-two punch of Metro 2033 Redux and Metro: Last Light Redux is an excellent pairing of incredible games for only $7.49. Both titles look exceptional if you have a capable PC that can run them at their maxed out settings, but can still look and play great on lower-spec PCs and happen to feature exceptional stories – now would be a great time to pick up and play them if Metro: Exodus caught your eye during Microsoft’s E3 2017 presentation. Meanwhile, Hotline Miami is an indie classic that everyone should experience thanks to its whacked-out visuals and pulsating soundtrack, and at $2.49, there’s no excuse not to pick it up.
With two weeks to grab games from the Steam Summer Sale, what are you planning to pick up? Any titles you’ve bought and played so far? Any recommendations? Let us know down below in the comments!