Last week, Steam’s hallowed Summer Sale began. Yes, that one of two times a year when folks can pick up a plethora of games, mostly old(er) but sometime new, for pennies. Though my wallet would like otherwise, I am not immune to Steam’s charms during these sales. In the past, I’ve used the Summer Sale to clean out my wishlist of most of the 99-cent to ten-dollar steals that pop up in order to have plenty to play over the fall and winter. (Until Steam’s Winter sale, when again my wallet cries out in agony, and I silence it ever so gently with a “shhh, it’ll be alright.”)
But this summer, I said “no.” Oh yes, I heaved a big, ol’ NO at Steam with its super sales and special deals, because…I can’t. I really just can’t right now. I simply have too much to play. Too many choices, if that’s even possible. (It is.) And I’m not just counting my Steam library here. Recently, we consolidated our collections of current games from this and last generation, and while they don’t take up a whole room or anything, they more than reminded me of the fact that we have a lot of games that I haven’t played. As well, the process also reminded me that I still have a number of console games in mind to add to the collection. All this left me with zero desire to spend much time in this year’s Steam Summer Sale. So my wishlist there will have to wait. This is despite the fact that, at less than four dollars, I really should just get Day of the Tentacle, because, it’ll put me one step closer to completing my LucasArts game collection. And, I know I’ve not had the best track record with TellTale Games, but everything I’ve seen and read about The Wolf Among Us makes it seem like a “must” for a player like me. My love of quirky, oddball titles also makes it hard to pass up, again and again it seems, the likes of Jazzpunk, Stick it the Man!, Little Inferno, but such is the way things must be right now. My heart thinks, “Oh look, Broken Age is so beautifully cheap! And Child of Light is just what your stress-ridden aura could use right now!” But my brain says otherwise. And I can’t think of a single excuse to not get The Cave, other than “do I really need another pretty platformer right now? No. No, I don’t”
The answer to all of it is simply no.
Ori and the Blind Forest. My one and only purchase during the sale. I wasn’t planning to get it, either. Story goes, I’d been after a Steam controller for playing on our Alienware Alpha, as using a mouse and keyboard on the couch just hasn’t been ideal at all. During this sale, Steam had (and still has) its controller and Steam Link in a decently-priced bundle. Though I didn’t care much about the Steam Link, my husband figured that it might be useful, so I opted for the two. And then he says to me,” Are you going to get any games as well?” And I firmly said “Nope, no Steam games for me!” And he said, “what about Ori and the Blind Forest?” And I said, “Oh…?” He remembered that of all the games shown at E3, Ori and the Will of the Wisps was the only one that tugged at my heartstrings. In response to seeing the trailer, I think I even said that I should really get Ori and the Blind Forest. Along came the start of the sale, and I checked the store. Indeed, there it was, Ori and the Blind Forest all on sale. But I was steadfast. I was so super sure that I wasn’t going to get the game, until he simply said to me “You should get it.” Sigh. Sigh. And…sigh. I did, because he was right. In fact, I should have gotten it when it was released in 2015. There’s no release date on Ori and the Will of the Wisps, so that should give me plenty of time to play catch-up.
Looking at my wishlist now, sans Ori and the Blind Forest, I feel okay with keeping the games I’d like to have in queue. As long as Steam’s around, the opportunity to acquire each of them someday, over time, is enough hope for me. But my wishlist, with its general action/adventure-platformer-puzzler-RPG feel, contains a single outlier that’s akin to me as a fly being attracted to a bug zapper: We Happy Few. It’s been in Early Access (no thanks) for a year now, and the more I read about it and watch of it, the more I want this game. And I shouldn’t because of two words. Survival. Horror. Yes, We Happy Few is a first-person, survival horror game. I’m not into horror games. And I’m utterly terrible at survival games. So it follows that We Happy Few shouldn’t be anywhere near my gaming world. And yet…I’ve had it on my wishlist since about the time the game was first placed in Early Access. What’s hooked me is its dystopian-esque, mind-altered/ing story, and wildly visual graphics. Should the game ever be fully released (fingers crossed), I know I’ll get it. And I might be terrible at it. Or not. With Bioshock finally under my belt, which, in hindsight, I could considered as something like a horror-esque game, I’ve become much more comfortable stepping outside of my gaming comfort zone. Of course, We Happy Few seems to revel in uncomfortableness, but playing with fire is just something I have to do every now and then.
What’s your experience been like with this summer’s Steam sale? Have you once again emptied your pockets for anything and everything, or have you played it safe with your wallet?
Lede image by cary