Humble Choice: September 2020
It really is a matter of perspective, these bundles. Well- I guess most things are. But these bundles in particular. Or even if not, they’re what we’re focusing on right now. Magi quites like this month’s set. I’m less pleased. Having said that, there are a couple of multiplayer titles here — one I was already aware of, one completely new to me — that saves the month from being put completely on pause, even if only just.
And I think too, that if I didn’t already own Forager I’d be quite pleased with the month overall.
I think a lot of my issue with the humble choice bundles for the last little while is that they haven’t had anything at all that I’ve specifically been after. Finding the odd side-find is always nice, but they don’t have quite the same resonance with me as something I really wanted.
As always — my list pretends I don’t own any of the games in the bundle and then ranks in order of descending preference.
Update: Although worth noting — this is another month where Classic subscribers get all twelve games; and this time so do Premium subscribers. Further — if you’ve not tried Humble Choice before (it is unclear to me whether ever being a prior Humble Monthly subscriber counts as well or not) you can get the Premium bundle for $12 USD.
My Picks for September 2020’s Humble Choice
1) Strange Brigade
Official Description: Embark on an exotic journey into danger in this rip-roaring 1930s third person adventure for 1-4 players! Encounter pulse-pounding action, treacherous traps and tales of derring-do!
This is the multiplayer game I was already aware of, noted in the introduction. It’s made by Rebellion — developer of the Sniper Elite series and it’s Zombie spin-off co-op game — so I had some reasonable expectations out of the title. Not enough to pull the trigger on purchase though, it seems.
It strikes me as a colonial / supernatural spin on the Left 4 Dead formula. But with bosses. So… A colonial / supernatural spin on Vermintide 2, I suppose. Should that be half right, it should be a bit of fun and is the primary reason I’m not putting this month on hold.
Official Description: The highly popular and quirky “idle game that you want to actively keep playing”. Explore, craft, gather & manage resources, find secrets and build your base out of nothing! Buy land to explore and expand!
After a bit of a rocky start (for me) where it seemed to be overly slow ahead of automation… This ended up being a fairly hard to put down game. I wrote a little about that back in last year’s June journal.
Since then it’s had a number of additional updates, although I don’t believe the once mentioned co-op has yet eventuated. I could be wrong though, and if I am — that might be a good cause to pick it up again.
3) Generation Zero
Official Description: Welcome to 1980’s Sweden. The local population has disappeared, and hostile machines roam the streets. Explore the atmospheric open world as you attempt to survive and prepare to strike back. Play alone or together with up to 3 friends, as you discover ways to defeat the invaders.
This was the other multiplayer game mentioned in the intro — this one I’d never heard of before. It’s published by Avalanche (they who otherwise develop the Just Cause series, oh- and also the Mad Max game).
It seems to also use the Avalanche engine, so it has at least a little bit of a pedigree behind it.
Colour me intrigued in any case.
4) Golf With Your Friends
Official Description: Why have friends if not to play Golf… With Your Friends! Nothing is out of bounds as you take on courses filled with fast paced, exciting, simultaneous mini golf for up to 12 players!
I’m alone in thinking this within my general online-play friend group unfortunately — but I would be all over this if anyone else was keen too.
Looks like some pretty light-hearted fun, plus a level editor! :D
5) Evoland Legendary Edition
Official Description: Evoland Legendary Edition brings you two great and unique RPGs, with their graphic style and gameplay changing as you progress through the game!
I have such an intense sense of deja vu writing about this one, that I really can’t comprehend search on my site bringing up nothing for Evoland already…
But in any case, Evoland Legendary Edition is both Evoland 1 and 2 in a single package. Evoland started with the conceit of unlocking Adventure/RPG game mechanics through the differing eras of time, along the way updating the graphical style to match. Beginning with Gameboy black and white (Green and grey?), all the way through to 3D modelled JRPG.
Evoland 2 took this conceit and made something of a ‘real’ RPG story out of it. Well worth a look in if these have somehow still managed to slip you by!
6) Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair
Official Description: Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair is a brand-new 2.5D platformer from some of the key creative talent behind ‘Donkey Kong Country’. As the colourful buddy duo you must tackle a series of stunning, 2.5D levels and explore a puzzling 3D Overworld rich with secrets and surprises!
Platformers aren’t generally my ‘thing’. Occasionally one will come along and get me past that fact, but it’s rare.
Yooka-Laylee isn’t likely to achieve that in the same manner that Ori did, yet it does tug on another possible access line. One of nostalgia and reminiscing about playing this style of game as a kid. Possibly even a game I could play alongside my youngest depending on the difficulty.
7) Catherine Classic
Official Description: Catherine: a tale of love, betrayal, and the terror of commitment. Experience the mature action-adventure-puzzle game unlike any other from the makers of the Persona series, now enhanced for PC in all its Classic glory. Is love over? Climb to the top or die trying.
I still know basically nothing about this game beyond that there description. I’m told this is the best way to approach it, too.
So I shan’t go spoiling it for myself or for you. It is made by the same guys as the Persona series though — and Persona 5 (my first forray into the series) left me with a rather positive impression. So there’s that!
8) The Occupation
Official Description: The Occupation is a fixed-time, investigative thriller set in North West England on Saturday 24th October, 1987.
With ‘fixed time’ in the context of this gaming meaning time passes 1:1 with the real world as you play. One minute is one minute.
I’m curious how this plays out with regard to conversing with NPCs. Can you skip through text faster as a quick reader to gain time? Does it break with it’s ‘fixed time’ if you do, keeping it to the length of time it would’ve taken for the lines to be read?
However it works, it’s an interesting enough idea to earn itself a spot on my list.
9) Vampire: The Masquerade – Coteries of New York
Official Description: Vampire: The Masquerade – Coteries of New York is a narrative experience set in the rich universe of Vampire: The Masquerade 5th Edition. It presents the struggle for power between two vampiric factions – the Camarilla and the Anarchs – bathed in the night lights of the Big Apple.
A visual novel type thing, set in the world of Bloodlines? … Well OK; it wouldn’t be my first choice (clearly, given it’s 9th even on this list of games)…
But I could see myself perhaps giving it a go.
10) The Shapeshifting Detective
Official Description: The Shapeshifting Detective is a supernatural murder mystery FMV game where you play as a detective who can shapeshift into other characters, allowing you to unlock secret conversations and private encounters.
I think the last FMV game I played was Zork Nemesis. I found it in a bargain bit a good number of years after Return to Zork. I don’t remember if it was also true of Nemesis — but I do recall that in Return to Zork it was possible right from screen one to take actions which rendered the game unbeatable.
Certainly a different era in gaming, eh?
The Drop Outs
So that leaves the drop outs this month as being:
Or at least they would be, if I didn’t in actual fact already own Forager and Evoland. :)