Crossfader’s Steam Summer Sale Top Picks

Rev up those wallets, ‘cause it’s time for another Steam sale! You’ve prepared for the day, getting a new router for gaming to make sure you’re ahead of the crowds, and now the sale is finally here! The digital store is offering massive discounts on its range of products until July 4th, so now is your chance to snag that game you wanted for the price of a Big Mac. With such a dizzying array of products, it can be a bit intimidating deciding which ones to grab, so the lovely people of Crossfader have compiled a list of our top picks.

steam age of empires

AGE OF EMPIRES II: HD EDITION – $20.00 ? $2.99

Though STARCRAFT has long dominated the competitive scene, I think there is little doubt that AGE OF EMPIRES II is the most venerable RTS out there. Nearly 20 years old and still going strong, Ensemble’s landmark title receives updates and expansions even to this day. The simple yet shockingly effective graphics remain functional and lend further character to an already quirky game. The truth is, many of AoE II’s concepts will seem vanilla to RTS fans, but that is simply because it is the gold standard of the genre. AoE II spawned countless imitators, but none have ever rivaled the OG. [Ed Dutcher]

steam collage

The Summer Sale Point-and-Click Bundle – $60.00 ? $30.34

A bit pricier than the other items on this list, but it’s also probably the greatest steal. Point-and-clicks are one of the oldest formats in the book, and this bundle has both classic and modern spins on the genre. This will get you four games for half the cost of one, and offers over a hundred hours of gameplay to boot. Whether it’s GRIM FANDANGO’s whimsical Day of the Dead take on CASABLANCA, the gothic horror of FRAN BOW, the SNATCHER-esque cyberpunk mystery in READ ONLY MEMORIES, or THE SILENT AGE’s moody time-travel tale, this pack has something for everyone. [Ed Dutcher]

steam desperados

DESPERADOS: WANTED DEAD OR ALIVE – $5.00 ? $1.24

If you haven’t heard of or played DESPERADOS: WANTED DEAD OR ALIVE, then boy howdy, are you in for a treat. I still remember being exposed to this real-time strategy game back when I was only 10 years old. Similar in playstyle to XCOM, the DESPERADOS series (the second installment being okay and the third wholly forgettable) puts you in the shoes of a rag-tag team of heroes, each with special abilities. You navigate through classic western settings and have to grow your small army by freeing a plantation slave and stopping the hanging of a doctor. The kick is this: If one person dies, it’s game over, so always keep a good eye on your map. It’s stylish, cool, and decidedly old-school in the best way possible. If that hasn’t convinced you yet, then its current one-dollar price tag should. [Sergio Zaciu]

steam robin hood

ROBIN HOOD: THE LEGEND OF SHERWOOD – $8.00 ? $2.00

If the playstyle and mechanics of the gunslinging DESPERADOS franchise intrigued you, but you just can’t seem to like the Wild West, then you’re in for a surprise with ROBIN HOOD: THE LEGEND OF SHERWOOD. Bolstered by a fantastic series of side quests and a lush, atmospheric environment, this swashbuckling adventure features a handful of design choices that feel far ahead of its time. Incredibly entertaining and boasting an intuitive sword swinging system, this two-dollar purchase is a surefire hit. [Sergio Zaciu]

steam xcom

XCOM: ENEMY UNKNOWN Complete Pack – $49.99 ? $9.99

What is easily my favorite game of the last 10 years can now be picked up, complete with all DLC and expansions, for 80% off. ENEMY UNKNOWN mixes the best parts of role-playing, troop command, and base management to create a fascinating hybrid of genres. Combat takes the tactical mechanics of shooters, like line of sight and cover, and places them into the context of a turn-based, class-centric strategy game where each choice you make can actually alter your fate. Each of your XCOM agents develops and assumes a greater persona with each mission you send them on, making it that much more painful if they get killed by alien lasers, zombie bites, or plain-old friendly fire. The ENEMY WITHIN expansion ups the ante by adding new soldier types and abilities on both sides, as well as throwing a human terrorist faction into the fray to sabotage your organization on a global scale. Neither game is for the faint of heart, as each mistake you make is brutally punished, but by this same token is each victory made all the sweeter. Seriously, if you haven’t picked this up yet, now is the time. [Ed Dutcher]

steam huniepop

HUNIEPOP – $9.99 ? $3.09

Hey look! It’s a puzzle game! Kind of like the one grandma plays. But hold on! What?! Anime titties? A dating sim?! Though its successor HUNIECAM didn’t do much for us, HUNIEPOP still holds up as a fun alternative to your typical match three and quickly became my most played Steam game in a matter of days. Like in real life, each date with your potential waifu is a new challenge. A board of colorful tokens is laid out before you with each one representing a desirable trait. Matching a few talent tokens may showcase some of your carnival game skill and earn you points with the gamer girl. Take the kinky school teacher out and be sure to keep an eye on those sexuality tokens. This creates a unique sense of accomplishment after a successful date that neither the puzzle or dating sim genre has seen the likes of. And adding even more nuance, two characters are fiercely independent single mothers and you can play as a female! Who says dating sims can’t be progressive? At a price of about three dollars, it’s well worth checking out. [Alec Larios]

Crossfader Staff

The good people of Crossfader Magazine.

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