‘Eh’. That’s my summary of this month’s humble choice. You’re welcome.

Oh alright. I guess I can muster a few more words on the matter and some semblance of a list. There are a couple of items this month which just barely keep me from making pausing the subscription this month an automatic choice.

And there is one must-play here, but I find it difficult to imagine most people with even a passing interest in playing haven’t already picked it up given it has been sold on deep discount many times over and has even been in a Humble Monthly before.

In any case — as always — my list pretends I don’t own any of the games in the bundle and then ranks in order of descending preference. After the top few though at least for myself… Interest levels drop off a cliff. Not to say there isn’t some potentially fun stuff here, just that I know they’ll never surface high enough up my backlog to ever see play.

Nonetheless, let’s get going!

My Picks for June 2020’s Humble Choice

1) Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice

Official Description: From the makers of Heavenly Sword, Enslaved: Odyssey to the West, and DmC: Devil May Cry, comes a warrior’s brutal journey into myth and madness. Set in the Viking age, a broken Celtic warrior embarks on a haunting vision quest into Viking Hell to fight for the soul of her dead lover.

I don’t believe the official description does much justice to this game. But I’m also unsure how much in the way this game needs in the way of introduction at this point. If you do need a little more, I finally finished it earlier this year (in what seems like a life time ago now) and wrote some spoiler free thoughts.

The short of it is though; if you’ve somehow managed to miss a chance at grabbing Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice so far, either in a sale or last year’s inclusion in a humble monthly selection, now is your chance.

2) Supraland

Official Description: A mix between Portal, Zelda and Metroid. Explore, solve puzzles, beat up monsters, find secret upgrades and new abilities that help you reach new places.

Wanna know something of a secret? Of the three games listed as inspiration for Supraland — Portal is the only one I’ve actually played.

Even so, Metroid and Zelda have become such a touchstone reference that I know the game styles they describe and have come to love many of the other titles in existence sharing them as an inspiration.

So that was all I needed to at least be interested, despite never so much as hearing about Supraland before today. But combine it with an Overwhelmingly Positive review score and I might even give it an actual try.

3) Overload

Official Description: A new six-degree-of-freedom shooter with intuitive controls, amazing lighting and graphics. From the creators of Descent, Overload is the best zero-gravity robot-blasting combat ever.

Descent formed a large part of my younger gaming life. I played the keyboard like a grand maestro. Orientation by arrows. Strafe on WASD. Other keys of interest scattered about the place. No mouse. I hadn’t yet learnt to aim with one yet. That would come later with Quake.

Descent and Descent 2 I actually played online, using IPX/SPX protocol emulators Kahn (and later Kali). Let me tell you — using a PPP Dialer in DOS was quite the experience!

All this to say… The death of six-degree-of-freedom shooters with the poor showing of Descent 3 left me saddened. There has been the odd attempt here and there, but none lived up to the glory of their predecessors.

So!

I’m interested. But I’m also afraid that this will confirm what I already know: My manual dexterity is not going to be anything remotely close to what it was as a teen. I don’t know if I’d be able to play this competently let alone exceptionally. Some of that will be age. But also there is the fact that I simply won’t be dedicating 100’s of hours to this — or possibly any other game — ever again.

4) Barotrauma

Official Description: Barotrauma is a 2D co-op submarine simulator – in space, with survival horror elements. Steer your submarine, give orders, fight monsters, fix leaks, operate machinery, man the guns and craft items, and stay alert: danger in Barotrauma doesn’t announce itself!

Huh. I had completely forgotten this even had co-op let alone such a heavy focus on it. That is likely why I hadn’t picked it up yet.

I knew it would be a hard sell for my particular friend group — but otherwise I loved everything about the concepts of taking the FTL and expanding to a whole new realm. I mean… It’s still in space. But it’s in a SEA in space!

5) Remnants of Naezith

Official Description: With the powers granted to him by the dragon, Kayra will destroy the Remnants of Naezith, enchanted fragments of the dragon’s body, to prevent anyone from exploiting their power for evil. Rush and swing through levels to top the leaderboards in this fast-paced, grappling hook precision platformer.

This one had actually been on my wishlist for a while, despite not typically enjoying platformers.

It reminded me of an old browser game, that I thought was called Pendulum. But either wasn’t or has been buried in the deeper recesses of the internet. Searching for it now brings up some other game similar in concept but… Not very good. In any case, this old Pendulum game (or whatever it was called) was all about swinging and leaping through procedurally generated levels, picking up in speed as you had to swing past ever enlarging gaps in the ceiling to hook your grapple to.

While there appear to be more mechanics than just that to Remnants of Naezith — it reminded me fondly of playing this. Enough so that while I don’t think I’d end up finishing it, I will probably at least open it up for a looksie.

6) GRID: Ultimate Edition

Official Description: GRID is a racing experience like no other. Offering unrivalled wheel-to-wheel racing for everyone, where every race is unpredictable as you create rivals and nemeses on your road to conquering the world of motorsport.

I should probably call out that this is the ‘big value’ offer this this month’s choice selection. To buy the ultimate edition would cost ~$80 NZD / $49 USD at the moment.

Racing games aren’t typically my ‘thing’, and I’ve turned down a high value racing game in the recent past. But that one was a technical / simulation game. This one is at least tuned more in the arcade direction, and with that being the case I’m up for at least giving it a go (in theory if not reality).

7) The Messenger

Official Description: As a demon army besieges his village, a young ninja ventures through a cursed world, to deliver a scroll paramount to his clan’s survival. What begins as a classic action platformer soon unravels into an expansive time-traveling adventure full of thrills, surprises, and humor.

I was confused by this one at first. I couldn’t place whether it was taking after the 8-bit or 16-bit era games.

Turns out the answer is: both.

There is a time travel mechanic which also incidentally jumps between the 8-bit and 16-bit styles.

8) The King’s Bird

Official Description: Escape into a world kept secret by a tyrant, and discover the truth about your freedom. Run, jump, and fly through forgotten lost kingdoms with a uniquely momentum-based flying mechanic.

This one looks so purty!

Watching gameplay of this put me in the mind of a (hopefully) less intensive Dustforce. Granted that one had less flight, though.

Dustforce was the last ‘serious’ platformer I tried… well… seriously. It came out in 2012. So… a long time ago.

9) The Stillness of the Wind

Official Description: A quiet game of life and loss. One by one, everyone left the village for the city. Everyone, except Talma. Approaching her final years, she maintains a simple way of life tending to her homestead, surviving, subsisting, whilst increasingly disturbing letters arrive from her family in the city.

The premise sounds interesting. Perhaps slightly depressing. But interesting.

You play as an old lady, the last remaining resident of a once-town. Meanwhile, something is going on out in the real world.

I did just note though that the developer / publisher names all have rather religious notes. So I wonder if it’s about the revelation.

10) Felix the Reaper

Official Description: Felix The Reaper is a challenging and strict 3D puzzle game about bringing humans into deadly situations. You are Felix, the ever-dancing bringer of death, who just so happens to be dangerously in love with Life.

From (potentially) a religious title to… Death personified!

Seems to be a fairly light-hearted (your avatar of death seems to literally dance non-stop) puzzler.

But honestly? This far down the list… At least for myself, it’s just filling space.

The Drop Outs