Humble Choice: March 2021
March’s bundle has some high-highs, and some fairly low-lows. But none so low as December 2020. (Seriously, what the hell Humble?) If you don’t yet own the top-picks then it’s a fairly easy choice to not pause this month in my opinion. Not a universally held opinion though — so if you’re after an alternate view, check out Magi’s take who is planning to hit the pause button.
My advice though?
If you haven’t had the fortune of playing it yet, that will make more sense to you after you’ve been through the part of Control that now sits somewhere in my top 10 gaming moments of my gaming history.
In any case, time to jump to the list. As always, I’ll attempt to rank the games in order of preference, starting with most preferred to and ending with least preferred. Where I own a game already I will pretend for the purposes of this list that I don’t.
My Picks for March 2021’s Humble Choice
|Control Standard Edition
|Action, Adventure, Supernatural, Sci-Fi
|Kingdom Two Crowns
|Sidescroller, Adventure, Strategy
|Open World, RPG
|XCOM: Chimera Squad
|Sidescroller, Action, Adventure
|Arcade, Action Racing
|Pendulum-Swing 3D Platformer
|Medieval Melee Combat, Online PvP
|Peaky Blinders: Mastermind
|TV tie-in, Puzzle, Adventure
|WWE 2K Battlegrounds
I really appreciate that Control offers the choice of either the Steam or Epic Game Store to match your personal preferences. It’s unfortunate only the standard edition here sans DLC is on offer, but not surprising.
The base game is an incredible experience and more than enough to inform you whether or not you’d like to go ahead with a later DLC purchase.
The ordering of my next three might be a little controversial. XCOM: Chimera Squad for me was simply too streamlined for my tastes. And that’s OK — it isn’t trying to be a mainline game entry. This isn’t an XCOM 3 attempt. It’s a spin-off. Just one I personally didn’t enjoy as much as I hoped I would.
ELEX also occupies an interesting space. It’s from Piranha Bytes — the makers of the Gothic and Risen series. If you imagine a European take on The Elder Scrolls… Well, you’d be all the way there. Particularly if you were already imagining the degree of jank that usually comes with these titles.
But for all that — it’s an interesting world and technically it holds up to modern standards very well. Heck, it even supports super ultrawide (32:9), not perfectly — but far better than it had any right to being a 2017 title.
So Kingdom Two Crowns? Well- I’ve played the older Kingdom titles… Going all the way back to when it was actually a browser based game. And honestly, they’re fantastic. Extremely minimalist city builders, in a side-scrolling format with beautiful pixel art. And this one even adds in the ability to play co-operatively. And so, to my taste? Rises well above the more expensive Chimera Squad and ELEX. Your values may of course differ!
Beyond that point though, I lose interest rapidly. Wildfire I hold some hope for and may make it into the games of this bundle that I actually give a try to. But the rest, each in their way and for their respective genres, remind me of something else already done better. Ageless in particular almost earned a set of italics for this. It is trying so very hard to be Celeste but cannot pull off the execution and so, while perhaps being alright as its own thing, invites comparison where it comes out worse for wear in almost every respect.
As for the rest… Just… *sigh*