Mr. Craiggy’s Top 5 Steam Halloween Sale Picks
It’s that time of year again where Valve put a lot of horror games (and this year, a lot of non-horror games too) on sale over the course of the Halloween period. It also coincides with payday, which means I’m going to be on instant noodles for the entirety of November I think…
What is it about horror games that fascinates gaming audiences? Is it the thrill and adrenaline of being chased? Perhaps it’s the shock and sensation after a jump scare. Perhaps we’re all just masochists and enjoy putting ourselves through the mental trauma. Personally, I love a good horror game, with the Silent Hill franchise, the original Dead Space (before the games got too shooty) and Amnesia being among my favourites. But, with the rise of Indie developers and with horror being a very popular genre, there has been a massive influx of games that you scare fans out there might not be aware of. So, here’s my Top 5 picks for games in this years Halloween Steam sale that you might not have heard of before.
5 – Lucius: Lucius (Available for 69p or in a twin pack with its sequel for under a fiver) sees you taking on the role of Satan’s son. No, not Damien; that must have been copyrighted or something. That’s right, the titular Lucius. In this game, you must use your unholy hell powers to manipulate and murder those around you, be they adoptive family, friends or, well…anyone who gets on the nerves of his demonic nibs. The game plays similar to a Hitman game; locate target, murder target, run like hell (pun intended) and don’t get caught. While the second game feels a lot better put together, I suggest picking up this one first because they are sequential from a story perspective (Although Lucius II does give a good recap), and at 69p you can’t really argue.
4 – Doorways: Doorways is available in a collected edition, with chapters 1-3 being bundled in together at £2.99. This game follows your classic survival horror theme of giving you very little information to begin with but telling the story through notes picked up during play (see: Amnesia) and, without giving too much of the plot away, Doorways sends you on a journey of discovery, but those discoveries aren’t particularly pleasant. These games provide an expected level of atmospheric and enviromental scares, both lingering and jumpy and Doorways is sure to give you a great experience.
3 – Kholat: There have been a lot of horror games over the past few years that have branched out from your typical “stuck in a mansion/asylum/spooky building” setting and taken the scares outdoors. Forests are scary at night, it’s true; there is an inherent, primal fear ingrained in people of being alone in the dark and outside of our shelters. Kholat takes this to the next level. Based on the Dyatlov Pass incident in 1959 up on Kholat Syakhl (literally meaning “Dead Mountain” in Mansi), this game puts you face to face with the terrors of the cold, along with the psychological fear of isolation and the deterioration of the human mind. Although there are night sequences in this game, a lot of Kholat utilises the stark whiteness of the snowscape to bring about its scares, which is refreshing, using such a bright palette instead of the drab, dreary dark schemes of most horror games. Plus, speaking of Starks, this game is narrated by Sean Bean! Kholat is one of the more expensive games on this list at £7.49, but is still definitely worth a look!
2 – Damned: This game is particularly special. Damned is a randomly generated online multiplayer horror experience. Similar to the Some Vs One shooter Evolve, Damned takes up to five players and places them into a stock horror location (mansion/hospital etc.) with four players being the survivors, working together, solving puzzles and trying to escape while one player takes on the role of one of four monsters (my favourite being “Mary”), each with their own playstyle and abilities, from setting traps to detecting loud players to just outright gory stabby murder death. Damned is currently on sale for £5.09 and it very nearly got my top slot, as it is a lot of fun and brings a very interesting dynamic to the survival horror genre by encouraging cooperative play, but it still suffers from a variety of unfortunate bugs which does hinder the game a little bit at times.
1 – “I have no mouth, and I must scream.”: This game, based on a short story by Harlan Ellison and very heavily influenced by the artistic works of the late H.R. Giger, is a psychological point and click adventure game with some particularly graphic and unnerving themes. I don’t usually play point and click games, but this one won me over and that’s why I’ve given it my top slot in this list because if I can be convinced into enjoying a point and click adventure game then it must be good! There are several story paths in this game, each following one of the characters from the original short story and putting them through their own twisted form of torture by the All Powerful Supercomputer known only as AM (As in “I Am”, for those up on your theology). Usually retailing for under £5, this game is always worth a look, but in this weekend’s sale it’s only £1.19 so you’d definitely be missing out, not buying for that price!
So that’s my round-up of games you might never have heard of or thought about playing, all on offer in this weekend’s Steam Halloween sale. Hopefully you’ll find something you like, and if there’s a game you feel should be on this list or that you think I need to try then please mention it in the comments below! I love getting game recommendations.
Stay safe this weekend, folks. Bar your doors and keep your holy symbols close. There’s ghosts and ghoulies and all manner of monster out there just waiting to nibble your noses, so it’s best to stay indoors and play some games instead!
Until next time!