Along with all of the good that Humble Bundle already brings to the table, they additionally offer players the chance to snatch up a medley of video games for a whopping $12 the first Friday of every month by becoming a subscriber. Varying from popular titles to indie games you’ve probably never heard of, Humble Monthly generates a diverse curated bundle to help establish the most paramount game libraries. In addition, every subscriber automatically receives 10% off titles in the Humble Store. You can’t beat the facts, folks—that’s one heck of a deal.

In this month’s bundle, subscribers got to exercise the left hemisphere of their brain and strategize various means of survival. Did August live up to one subscriber’s hopes and dreams? Read below to get a glimpse of my first impressions of the nine games featured in this month’s Humble Monthly.


The Surge

The Surge commences with a guy in wheelchair entering CREO, a megacorporation that grants humans with a heavy-grade exoskeleton. Naturally, things begin to go haywire and our friend Warren awakens in a seemingly ruined section of the facility where homicidal robots are out for blood. Immediately, the visuals deserve a respectful nod. The camera angles, however, took a bit of adjustment but became second nature within minutes of gameplay.

The Surge walks you through how to attack, heal, and recognize weak points in enemies within the first half hour of gameplay, paving a smooth path to a much more bumpy road ahead. Collecting scrap from dysfunctional robots brings upgrades to light for your radical new armor, but they aren’t exactly a walk in the park to attain. The combat proves to be interactive and rewarding at times, but repetitive and harsh as well. This sci-fi action RPG doesn’t offer much mercy to its players, so when it does, welcome it with open arms.

the surge a walk in the park 0005

The Surge presents close-up combat where thinking quick on your feet is the fine line between life and death.

Yay or Nay?

If you’re a fan of the Dark Souls trilogy, The Surge just might be your cup of tea. Up-close combat and relentless defective robots may taste like a bitter pill, but scavenging the loot from their dismembered robotics is well worth the hustle.

Take a look at what we thought of The Surge here.


Sudden Strike 4

Real-time strategy games are often a hit or a miss. Sudden Strike 4 appears to be a hit with its realistic visuals, user-friendly gameplay, and well-structured battlefields. Before hurling yourself into the heat of a battle, a mini interactive tutorial lays out the foundation of Sudden Strike 4, demonstrating a similar scenario you’d encounter during the three campaign modes.

The Allied, Soviet, and German troops represent the World War II battlefields in Sudden Strike 4. Whatever scenario you want to tackle first also brings the choosing of a commander. Their individual abilities bring about assorted approaches to battle, generating a unique combat experience every time. Your use of tactics, though, will determine whether or not you’ll be successful. It may take a couple losses here and there to acquire a win, but it sure feels rewarding waving the flag of victory.

sudden strike 4

Patience is key in Sudden Strike 4 – the progression may be slow, but the end result may be fairly satisfying.

Yay or Nay?

Sudden Strike 4 presents numerous missions to battle through, but at your own pace. Because of this, the gameplay may become dull after a while as you await your sluggish tanks to roll their way to their designated spot. If you can overlook some minor flaws and enjoy a casual strategy war game, Sudden Strike 4 may pique your interest.

Read what we thought about Sudden Strike 4 here.


A Hat in Time

Imagine this: you fashion hats confined with magical powers and command a funky spaceship radiating a happy-go-lucky ambiance. Suddenly your world is turned upside down when the spaceships fuel source known as Time Pieces vanish onto a planet nearby. As a result of such hindrances, the 3D platformer adventure A Hat in Time is born where you lead a clever girl through peculiar worlds occupied by just as equally peculiar inhabitants.

The first thing I noticed about A Hat in Time was not only how vibrant the worlds were, but how large they were as well. Jumping freely from building to building, climbing atop platforms, and walking along very thin surfaces gets our girl to where she needs to be. However, there are nuisances obstructing every path toward victory. The Mafia of Cooks was the first group to encounter, each member equipped with comical anecdotes. Monsters are relevant too, but don’t cause too much heartache. Stitching together new and improved hats is where the fun is at.

hatkidtease

Trying to avoid the Mafia as you roam the street in A Hat in Time isn’t necessary – they’re delightful as long as you don’t attack them first.

Yay or Nay?

A Hat in Time is like a breath of fresh air. The gameplay is relaxed while at the same time exciting. Adventures wait around every corner, within every nook and cranny, and atop even the highest of platforms. With the help of a magical hat, anything is possible.

Read our review of A Hat in Time here.


The Escapists 2

Punching someone out during breakfast to create a diversion for another inmate is only one of many assignments you can take from fellow convicts to scrounge up some extra change in The Escapists 2. The lighthearted strategy experience features whimsical characters, mischievous planning, and unique ways to escape each prison. Crafting weaponry out of socks and the limited items you have access to requires a bit of imagination and patience, especially when having to attend roll call and other prison duties.

Use your free time wisely. I found it sensible to hit the gym so my muscular inmate would win any brawl I partook in. The guards can’t catch me if I beat them all up. The Escapists 2 offers multiplayer modes as well, but getting the lay of the land by adventuring through the mini tutorial will make you feel like a less incompetent convict. You don’t want to look weak in the eyes of another prisoner—they won’t hesitate to knock you out.

the escapists 2

Nothing quite like starting a brawl in the middle of dinner in The Escapists 2.

Yay or Nay?

The Escapists 2 requires an inventive mind and a respectable amount of composure. Chipping away at a wall in your room in hopes of tunneling out into the world once more won’t happen overnight. Acquiring bonds, materials, and skill points will speed up the process, though.


Conan Exiles

Survival games are brutal. Most of the time you start out with merely the clothes on your back. Sometimes you aren’t even given that luxury. Conan Exiles is no exception. Taking a stab at single-player mode enabled the general layout of what was expected of me to survive. The routine means of survival, hunger and thirst, played a factor, but climbing giant boulders to escape rabid hyenas challenged my stamina and strength. What else can one expect among the lands of Conan the Barbarian?

The seamless open world captivated me, but only until I snapped back to reality of being stalked by a ravenous alligator. Naturally, I was on the run once more. A lot of Conan Exiles is learning on the go. Enhancing your knowledge of basic survival by crafting simple pickaxes or torches assists in the path to building a kingdom, but the process is painfully slow. Slaying creatures in the wild requires more than a wimpy stone axe, so looting eggs or devouring bugs suffices for the time being.

Conan Exiles

The ever-changing weather conditions in Conan Exiles is just another challenge thrown at your survival instincts. Build a home and stay warm out there.

Yay or Nay?

Hero customization, exploration, and character growth are three features I experienced within my first hour or so of Conan Exiles. The progression is sustained, along with the inability to slay enemies or obtain a valid source of food. Nonetheless, wandering through Conan with a couple of other barbaric friends would increase the excitement factor. For now, I’ll spend my time continuing to harvest the resources to construct a castle.


Kona

Kona narrates the story of a private detective in the 1970s who has stumbled upon a dead body in an unnerving town. Carl, our protagonist, ventures through a horrendous blizzard in a first-person perspective in hopes to uncover the events transpiring around him. Not only does Carl have to investigate the eerie surroundings engulfed by a winter storm, but he also has to sustain a warm body temperature and tend to any wounds in order to keep afloat.

Kona’s gameplay moves at a slow pace, but the third-person narration complements Carl’s advancement accordingly. However, the narrator won’t hold your hand and lead you to solving the mystery. I merely tipped my toes into Kona’s story, but the 1970s vintage atmosphere generates an intrigue that captivates those who enjoy an immersive story.

kona 08

Because of the never-ending blizzard conditions in Kona, it’s difficult to see what lies in the path ahead.

Yay or Nay?

Exploring the depths of Kona will either bore you or fascinate you. The astute narration illuminates the in-depth history embedded into this game, making the story worthwhile. Take a stroll down the snowy road and take a look for yourself.


Forged Battalion

The first thing I thought of when exploring Forged Battalion’s interface was how much it reminded me of the Command & Conquer franchise. You build a base in real-time to partake in a variety of battles, whether they be in campaign or skirmish mode. Power plants are vital, considering factories need a power source. You also won’t get very far without a refinery either. Luckily, Forged Battalion provides you with the necessities. The construction of vehicle factories and infantry barracks depend on your personal taste. What will it take to conquer the other team?

Like I previously mentioned, Forged Battalion may as well be a modern version of Command & Conquer. You don’t get much of a tutorial, but can read through the guide book to familiarize yourself with the basic gameplay, which is solid at best. The visuals aren’t much to write home about, but really don’t need to be for this kind of strategy game. Managing a faction isn’t a simple task, but Forged Battalion certainly doesn’t make it impossible.

forged battalion

Setting up a base that’s unconquerable isn’t a cake walk. With a strong army, you may stand a chance.

Yay or Nay?

Forged Battalion has a very nostalgic feel to it, but you can tell the game is unfinished. It is, however, worth taking a look at if you enjoyed the Command & Conquer games.


Pathologic Classic HD

The creepy vibe appeared to always be present in Pathologic, whether it derives from the eccentric characters or the unsettling environments. You start out choosing between one of three characters to explore a mysterious town populated by even more mysterious people. You don’t exactly know what’s going on. Conversing with town folk, though, reveals puzzle pieces to assist in understanding the big picture.

The gameplay is a bit of a headscratcher at first, but all you’re really required to do is walk around, interact with people, and buy food. Hunger is still essential, even if the town is warped with some mysterious plague. Events start to transpire and the citizens begin to lose their mind, thus leaving you to unveil clues before it’s too late. Though Pathologic is undoubtedly a dialogue-driven experience, its story is unsettling enough to keep you captivated.

pathologic

You walk out of your house and see this, what do you do? YOU RUN.

Yay or Nay?

You’ll either love Pathologic Classic HD or you’ll find it to be boring and humdrum. It isn’t necessarily a fun and stimulating experience, but one that will stick with you for quite some time. I must admit, I have only experienced a portion of Pathologic, but the images still stay vivid in my mind.


Woten

Humble Originals are inventive games developed specifically for Humble Monthly subscribers, tossing in a black sheep into the mix of games already offered in the bundle. This month’s original game was Woten, a cute 2D platformer where you jump and bash your way through a funky little setting colonized by inquisitive creatures. The sounds and general gameplay give off a Mario vibe, but without the unforgiving gameplay.

Though short in length, adventuring through Woten is nice break from the various survival games featured in this month’s bundle. What appears to be an oversized bat carries our little fella to hard-to-reach surfaces and even strikes up a conversation. It doesn’t hurt to make some buddies along the way!

woten

Woten’s simple visuals complement the relaxing, yet puzzling, 2D setting.

Yay or Nay?                             

If you’re looking for a short Mario-esque adventure accompanied by funky puzzles and nifty little creatures, look no further. Woten is simply charming, even if for a brief time.


August’s bundle challenged players on how tactful they were in means of survival, along with a couple of odd balls. Players had the chance to experience the unforgiving lands of Conan Exiles and two minutes later switch to stitching whimsical hats in A Hat in Time. Variety is key, folks. What were your favorite games in August’s Humble Monthly? Let us know in the comments!

Disclosure: Humble Bundle works with TechRaptor for affiliate partnership, and TechRaptor earns a small commission off purchases made from links in this article.


Amanda Bower

Staff Writer

I'm so awkward when I have to talk about myself. I'm an avid video game player (obviously). When I'm not avoiding reality in imaginative worlds, you can find me trying to master a kamehahmeha while simultaneously devouring buffalo chicken wings.