Best Games To Buy In 2021’s Massive Blowout

Best Games To Buy In 2021's Massive Blowout

A penguin sits with a young man, while another man leans against a wall behind them.

Screenshot: Digital origame

Yes, gamers, it’s that time of year again – the time of the Steam Winter Sale, which becomes more of a normal seasonal sale and less of a playful mess with each passing year (for better and for the better. worse). 2021 has been a pretty awesome, if weird, year for video games, so I wanted to bring that weird, messy energy into my end-of-year recommendations. Without further ado, here are a few games to check out as part of Steam’s massive winter sale:

The Artificer shoots a beam of powerful energy at two beetle guards, as a wave of oil pours over his head.

Screenshot: Hopoo Games

Chance of rain 2

Chance of rain 2 is one of the craziest video games around. There you are one of a dozen little guys and you run around defeating enemies and collecting items to make yourself stronger. There are a lot of enemies and a lot more items. You will become an ascendant aspect of death, you will kill the King of the Void, you will be crushed by a planet time and time again until you barely manage to make your way through. Easily one of the best roguelites of recent years, the game is set to receive its first expansion in early 2022, so now is a great time to jump on it.

Sol Badguy delivers a brutal uppercut to Axl in the middle of a forest.

Screenshot: the arc system is working

Guilty Gear

The signature fighting game of 2021, and my great introduction to the genre, is on sale for a delicious 30% off. Aspire manages to be a perfect introduction to a famously hostile genre thanks to its relatively straightforward combo structure and difficulty level, and plethora of system mechanics that allow more experienced players to gain a great deal of depth from the experience.

A photo of two terminals in Umurangi Generation, each with a QR code.

Screenshot: Digital origame

Umurangi Generation + Macro

is a great photography simulation with shocking depth. It is also one of the best cyberpunk fiction pieces in the history of the genre, telling the fall of a city due to UN mismanagement, the climate crisis and kaiju. Macro, the game’s first and only DLC, builds on this with a surprisingly beautiful and hopeful conclusion. Umurangi Generation manages to capture the realities of life in the early 2020s through an incredible act of cyberpunk self-portrait, and you’d be silly to miss it.

The Heaven's Vault protagonist says she found a crater, in the trees, under a man's gaze.

Screenshot: Inkle

The sky

Developed by 80 Days studio and narrative design tools developer Inkle, The sky is an archeology game about language. The game’s unique narrative structure, stellar writing, and linguistically-based puzzle design have made it a modern cult classic. In fact, the game’s narrative was strong enough to earn him not one, but two novelizations released a few months ago.

A shipbreaker cuts off the wings of a ship, while Rescue Bay waits --- its mouth wide.

Screenshot: Blackbird Interactive

Hard Space Wrecker

Hard Space Wrecker is a game about space capitalism, and brilliant too. You play as a shipwrecker, a highly trained and poorly paid specialist who spends his days salvaging huge spaceships. The game’s use of depressurization, fuel lines, electrical systems, and the terrifying weight of gravity make this a tense yet meditative experience unlike anything I’ve ever played.

A person plays with board game figures, while a strange cat gazes aside.

Screenshot: Dread XP

Dread XP Editor Set

Dread XP has become one of my favorite editors over the past few years, producing five amazing horror collections which are all contained in this delightful Editor’s package at $ 24. The Dread X collections manage to systematically confront the player with unique and thrilling horror experiences, each created by a different developer. Spookware, which is also included in the bundle, is a horror WarioWare and I cannot recommend it highly enough.

Dozens of massive swords loom above as a luminous portal shines in the distance from a yellow-green wasteland.

Screenshot: Streum on Studio

EYE Divine Cybermancy

EYE Divine Cybermancy is a deeply strange video game. You play as a cybernetically enhanced member of a weird order of faith known as the EYE, who does a lot of violence through some of the most ambitious immersive simulation games on this side of Deus Ex. In the end, you’ll pass Stealth infiltrations and shootouts aimed at rabbits leaping across battlefields with enough speed to test the sound barrier, blasting enemies from afar with your terrible psychic power. It’s a weird, messy thing that everyone should try at least once.

A large Battlemech stands on top of a ridge, while the hills stretch below.

Screenshot: Interactive Paradox

Combat Tech + DLC

Combat technology is one of the best tactics games of the past five years and it didn’t receive enough love when it was originally released in 2019. The game sees you at the helm of a new company of mercenaries, trying to find its place in a brutal galactic conflict – while managing your meager funds, the costs of maintaining machinery and the salaries of pilots. Battletech manages to cross the fine line between tactical depth and complexity for the sake of complexity, and includes some really good mech customization that facilitates some really wacky builds.

Image of the article titled The Best Games To Check Out During The Steam Winter Sale

Screenshot: Shiny shoe

monster train

Yeah, yeah, roguelike deck builders are way too common at this point, but …monster train is truly remarkable with its tower-defense combat and formidable build diversity. You play as the commander of a train trying to get to the heart of Hell, which froze in the wake of Heaven’s latest assault. To do this, you will combine several factions of powerful demons, each with their own strategies and mechanics. It’s a great little game that I warmly recommend to everyone.

A deeply scarred young woman talks to a porcelain-skinned young boy, who looks ashamed and scared.

Screenshot: Novectacle

The house in Fata Morgana

The house in Fata Morgana is a stellar visual novel with some of the best storytelling twists I’ve ever seen in any medium. In it, you take on the role of an anonymous protagonist moving through the history of a lavish mansion, with each story revealing more of both its past and yours. The game manages to be conceptually fascinating, thematically resonant, and human-jaw-dropping at every turn – and it’s easily one of my favorite stories in any video game.


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