Indie Games to Watch for in the 2013 Winter Sales - The Darkest Link Blog - www.GameInformer.com
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Indie Games to Watch for in the 2013 Winter Sales

Winter is coming, and that means sales. At the time of this writing, the Humble Bundle Winter Sale has begun on their website, and according to a leak (which was accurate about the fall sale) a while back, the humongous Steam Winter Sale begins tomorrow.  The games going on sale are numerous, but I'm going to tell you which games YOU should look out for. I haven't played all of these games, but I have heard great things about many of them. I will rate how much you should look out for deals, and give a brief blurb about the game if I've played it. Some games like Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons and Castle Crashers won't appear because in order to play Brothers and have a good time in Crashers, you need to hook up a controller to your computer.

 

My wallet has survived past sales, but I'm not hopeful this time.

 

Bastion

This has to be my favorite indie game ever. While Bastion did release originally on XBLA, it is now available on Steam and usually gets a really large sale. Also, Bastion has one of the best soundtracks ever (two of the four songs nominated came from the game which it won, and also got best soundtrack in the 2011 VGAs), a perfect blend of story and gameplay and one of the best narrators ever. Oh, it also looks really good.

Search for this game on sale, as it is really worth it.

Buy it rating: 10/10

Antichamber



 

Antichamber is a puzzle game that reminds me a lot of Portal. The puzzles are really brain-bending (this game pays no attention to the laws of space), and they entertain throughout. There is a lack of narrative, but with puzzle solving this good, it's amazing. You can return to a central hub at any time if you get stuck which will happen quite a lot. To the best of my knowledge, Antichamber is PC exclusive, and given the amount of positive reviews of the game, expect it to be on sale.

Buy it rating: 9/10

Speaking of Portal...

Portal

Portal is one of the biggest successes when it comes to downloadable games. When released with the Orange Box, people didn't know what it was. Now, people can't stop saying "The Cake is a Lie!" and a full fledged sequel came out  in 2011. The narrative is strong, and the puzzles are great. The game is short, but the challenge modes make you think outside of the box by limiting your portal number and the steps you take. I'd be surprised if you have not played Portal yet, but if not, give it a try

Buy it rating: 9/10

Gone Home

While some of you may argue that Gone Home is a game, I consider it to be one. I played it through in about two hours, and I enjoyed the entire game. Gone Home is a fantastic experience whether you count it as a game or not. The story is one of the best I've experienced all year (Note: I haven't played Bioshock Infinte, The Last of Us, or GTA V), and even today I still think about it. Kudos to you, Fullbright Company.

Buy it rating: 8/10

Cave Story+

Many platformers are accused of not having a good story (Mario mainly), but Cave Story+ has an amazing story. Cave Story was developed by one guy and it's really impressive. I would recommend it to almost anyone, as the end gets incredibly challenging, with challenge mode even more so. The story seems quite simple, but it evolves the more work you put in trying to find hidden secrets, and the game's endings revolve around what you decide to do. I actually played through half of this game again because I made a choice I didn't want to, and I felt crushed. 

Buy it rating: 9/10

FEZ

Yet another puzzle game. While originally XBLA exclusive, a port was brought to Steam, and again it is another great indie game. It's a combo of platforming and puzzle gameplay, with both being intertwined very closely. The titular Fez allows Gomez, the main character, to shift his perspective. This is used for some truly great puzzle solving. QR codes, a secret code, and it's 8-bit graphics make it a great throwback while still being new.

Buy it rating: 9/10

Monaco



I'm actually still playing through Monaco with my friends as recently Monaco has been having some server problems. If anyone gets a copy, message me and I'll play with you. Monaco is a stealth game, with classes that help you with thieving objectives. Either I'm bad at stealth, or this game is hard as I have experienced many game overs, especially playing two player. From what I've heard, it's basically a 2-D Payday. The gameplay excels, and there is a workshop available for crafting your own heists.

Buy it rating: 8/10. +1 if you're gonna play with me.

Psychonauts

That's right. The Psychonauts from Super Replay. And the Meat Circus is a lot worse when you experience it in person.

Psychonauts its a great 3-D platformer, with some of the best humor ever in any video game. The levels are incredibly memorable, with standouts like The Milkman Conspiracy and the horribly difficult Meat Circus. The characters are quirky, and I was laughing throughout. The psychic powers are also really useful, and enhance the experience without making it easier.

Buy it rating: 9/10

Quantum Conundrum

Quantum Conundrum was made by Kim Swift, the creator of the original Portal, and this game feels very inspired by it. There is a voice constantly over the intercom, the puzzles are physics based, and the gameplay is incredibly solid. Some problems arise when trying to first-person precision platform across tables and chairs. Also, the DLC and the soundtrack aren't the best

Buy it rating: 8/10 +0 for DLC and soundtrack

Terraria

2D Minecraft except it's more focused on surviving and digging down to the center of the earth. I have barely logged any hours on it, but it is a lot better with friends.

Buy it rating: 8/10. +1 if you play with friends

Trine 1&2

I'm lumping these together as I played them both in two days’ time (but that was really focused hardcore playing). The Trine games are puzzle platformers with RPG elements with Hack and Slash tidbits. They are both very fun games, but sometimes the puzzles are a little to easy and the level-ups a little over powered. But the Trine games look stunning. I just had this happy feeling the entire time I was playing the game because it was so incredibly pretty. I haven't played the Orc's Story DLC for Trine 2 for quality testing, but if it's like Trine 2, it's worth it. Also, the Trine 2 complete story pack goes on a 90% off sale sometimes.

Buy it rating: 9/10. +.5 if you have a HD PC.

Stanley Parable

This is the beginning of the list of games I haven't played yet. But everyone has been talking about the Stanley Parable since it released and comparing it to Gone Home. With how much I enjoyed the latter, I'm hopeful for the Stanley Parable. I did try the demo, and would recommend the demo as it doesn't have anything to do with the story.

Buy it rating: 9/10

Guacamelee!

What used to be a PSN exclusive is now available on Steam. The rave reviews have me excited, and the theme seems to be similar to the bullfighting level in Psychonauts.

Buy it rating: 9/10

The Swapper

Again, I know little, but what I have seen has me excited. Puzzle games seem to be the theme of this list, as a lot of indie puzzle games are very well made.

Buy it rating: 9/10

Cloudberry Kingdom

I'm just going to link to this trailer. There.

Buy it rating: 9/10

Papers, Please

Papers, Please is a game where you check passports and get punished if you do it wrong. Sounds like the type of fun Dark Souls or Super Meat Boy are. Speaking of,

Super Meat Boy



Super Meat Boy is said to be one of the most challenging platformers ever. I'm looking forward to the challenge

Buy it rating: 8/10

Honorable mentions: FTL: Faster Than Light, Final Fantasy VII, Braid, Dungeon Defenders, Final Fantasy VIII, LIMBO

Well, there's the list. Miss any? Any games you think I would like? Feedback or criticism? Tell me in the comments below!

P.S. If there are any font problems i.e. certain blocks of text being bolded, I have tried to fix them, but it might not transfer into the post.

 Also: Guacameele! is on sale at the Humble Store.com Still haven't played it yet, but it is purchased. I might do another blog talking about all of the indie games I got during the Holiday Sale and which ones were worth it. Stanley Parable is worth it already.

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