Steam sales are always a big deal for PC gamers. The discounts give those with enough an opportunity to save and those with little the opportunity to grab the titles they’ve been dreaming of. The Steam Autumn sale is here and with it, great deals.
This week, the Autumn sale arrived with a plethora of great discounts and a new feature called Steam Awards, where users nominate their favorite games to different categories, as well as coming up with their own. And now that the final day of discounts is almost here, let’s have a look at some of the best deals the event is providing. Unlike other compilations, this list aims to showcase the best discounts for games that garnered positive reviews, whether they sparkle with the latest graphics, innovate with clever mechanics, or are just downright fun. In no particular order:
Note: Click on the images to access the store pages
Game: Zombie Grinder / Genre: Shooter / Developer: TwinDrills / Publisher: TwinDrills / Overall reviews: Mostly positive / Early Access: Yes / DLCs: No / DISCOUNT: 75%
Zombie Grinder is a 2D shooter reminiscent of the 1993 SNES classic Zombies Ate My Neighbors. With a moderate retro vibe, adorable designs, and a focus on multiplayer, the title first became available to a larger audience in 2012 through Desura, a Steam-like platform that focuses on indie games. It arrived on Steam on October 16, 2015, through Steam Greenlight.
Game: Don’t Starve / Genre: Sandbox survivor / Developer: Klei Entertainment / Publisher: Klei Entertainment / Overall reviews: Overwhelmingly positive / Early Access: No / DLCs: Yes (3) / DISCOUNT: 75% (base game), 65% (Don’t Starve Alone Pack), 66% (Don’t Starve Mega Pack bundle), 80% (Best of Klei bundle)
One of the most successful Early Access stories, Don’t Starve is a survivor game set in a surreal sandbox world with designs reminiscent of Tim Burton. First released in 2013 to critical acclaim, it features a curious cast each with unique traits and a variety of crafting recipes to help them survive the harsh environments. It won several awards and spawned two expansion packs (Reign of Giants and Ship Wrecked) as well as a standalone multiplayer version.
Game: Life is Strange / Genre: Story-driven adventure / Developer: Dontnod Entertainment / Publisher: Square Enix / Overall reviews: Overwhelmingly positive / Early Access: No / DLCs: Yes (2) / DISCOUNT: 75% (Complete Season)
Life is Strange is one of the titles that made 2015 shake on its base. The story-driven interactive adventure tells the story of Max, an ordinary geeky teenager who one day finds out she can rewind time. Although the premise is simple, its execution delivers a compelling story revolving around relatable characters. Unlike other story-driven adventure titles, Life is Strange thrives in its use of time manipulation, allowing players to see the immediate consequences of their actions and quickly revert them if they so desire. Despite the last episodes leaving some fans disappointed, Dontnod’s sophomore title garnered multiple awards and left its mark on video game history.
Game: Dishonored / Genre: Stealth action-FPS / Developer: Arkane Studios / Publisher: Bethesda Softworks / Overall reviews: Overwhelmingly positive / Early Access: No / DLCs: Yes (4) / DISCOUNT: 67% (base game), 50% (Definitive Edition), 40% (DLCs)
Another game that marked the year of its release, Dishonored came out in 2012 to a positive reception. Set in the plagued city of Dunwall, the title tells the story of Corvo Attano, a bodyguard who is framed for the murder of the Empress. Bestowed with magical powers, Corvo finds himself amidst a sociopolitical conflict and supernatural events to which the general population is unaware. It won multiple awards and spawned a sequel, Dishonored 2, which released on November 11.
Game: Hyper Light Drifter / Genre: Action / Developer: Heart Machine / Publisher: Heart Machine / Overall reviews: Very positive / Early Access: No / DLCs: Yes (1) / DISCOUNT: 40%
A mix between The Legend of Zelda and Dark Souls, Hyper Light Drifter was on everyone’s lips early this year, yet it failed to remain relevant shortly after its release in March. Not that it was trying or that it needed. The debut title of indie studio Heart Machine, this is one of those awe-inspiring indie games that deserve a special spot in every gamer’s library but get shadowed by triple-A releases and their expensive marketing campaigns. Hyper Light Drifter puts players on control of the eponymous Light Drifter, an agile fighter who survives an apocalyptic event. With an abstract plot told over images rather than text and dialogue, it offers a beautiful open world full of secrets and engaging fast-paced action combat.
Game: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim / Genre: RPG / Developer: Bethesda Game Studios / Publisher: Bethesda Softworks / Overall reviews: Very positive / Early Access: No / DLCs: Yes (4) / DISCOUNT: 67% (base game), 73% (Skyrim + Add-ons bundle), 50% (DLCs)
This should be no stranger as Skyrim is one of the most popular games of all time. Although Bethesda was already popular before it, its release in 2011 changed the industry. The iconic fifth entry in the The Elders Scrolls franchise is a hybrid of first and third person RPGwith modding support, a feature that helped its popularity. It allows players to create their own custom character, the Dragonborn, who must venture through the cold land of Skyrim to stop an elder dragon.
Game: The Talos Principle / Genre: Puzzle / Developer: Croteam / Publisher: Devolver Digital, Croteam / Overall reviews: Overwhelmingly positive / Early Access: No / DLCs: Yes (3) / DISCOUNT: 75%
Winning several awards following its release in 2014, The Talos Principle is a puzzle game in the likes of the popular Portal and Quantum Conundrum. Putting players in control of a robot, The Talos Principle tells a timeless story about a group of scientists and their revolutionary project whilst exploring difficult existential questions such as what defines consciousness. It is one of the best puzzle games on the market, sporting gorgeous graphics, breathtaking sceneries, head scratching problems, an inspiring soundtrack, and plenty of secrets.
Game: Undertale / Genre: RPG / Developer: tobyfox / Publisher: tobyfox / Overall reviews: Overwhelmingly positive / Early Access: No / DLCs: Yes (1) / DISCOUNT: 50%
Another release that shook 2015 on its base, Undertale is an RPG developed in GameMaker Studio by one person, Toby Fox. Taking inspiration from old school quirky RPGs such as Earthbound, Undertale offers players the choice to approach encounters either passively or aggressively. Although simple in concept, it won gamers’ hearts and continues to be one of the most relevant indie games of all time, receiving several awards from different gaming publications as well as nominations on The Game Awards and the BAFTA Games Awards.
Game: Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen / Genre: Action RPG / Developer: Capcom / Publisher: Capcom / Overall reviews: Very positive / Early Access: No / DLCs: Yes (2, one being a pre-order bonus) / DISCOUNT: 60%
Capcom’s take on modern open world RPGs, Dragon’s Dogma made its way to PC to a warm reception. Surviving the test time since its first release in 2012, players still recognize the brilliance of its combat while enjoying the seemingly endless amount of content. Taking place in the fictional world of Gransys, the game follows the Arisen’s journey to take his or her heart back from The Dragon. With twice as many fiends and mythological beings, the PC port available on Steam includes the expansion Dark Arisen with all its DLCs and enhancements.
Game: Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor / Genre: Action adventure / Developer: Monolith Productions, Inc., Feral Interactive / Publisher: WB Games, Feral Interactive / Overall reviews: Very positive / Early Access: No / DLCs: Yes (20) / DISCOUNT: 50% (Game of the Year Edition)
Taking Tolkien’s legacy forward, Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor was the target of controversy back in 2014 when Warner Bros. only agreed to provide preview copies to media outlets if they signed a contract stating they would give the game favorable reviews. The publisher’s requirements proved unnecessary as Shadow of Mordor was well received and won multiple awards, including Game of the Year from different publications. Taking fans back to the classic Middle-earth, Shadow of Mordor takes place between the events of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings to witness the story of Tailon, a ranger who’s killed by the Black Hand of Sauron and whose spirit merges with the wraith of the Elf Lord Celebrimbor to avenge their loved ones.
The Steam Autumn sale ends on November 29, with the Steam Awards coming this December. This collection of titles was brought to you by Gabriel and Dante.