March 2019 Humble Monthly Overview: Quintessential

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March 2019 Humble Monthly Overview: Quintessential

March 18, 2019

By: Luigi Savinelli

 
 

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.

Humble Bundle offers to their Humble Monthly subscribers a new set of amazing games to play. The bundle starts with a triptych of very different but equally wonderful games with Cultist Simulator, Earth Defense Force 4.1, and Vermintide 2. The other games that have been revealed are no less interesting and enjoyable. You can punch your way through hordes of enemies in Fight'N Rage, sit back and enjoy the story with Late Shift, or go around for a drive with Slipstream. Very different games that have in common the straightforwardness of their gameplay.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=62MsuDQMZGY

 
 

Cultist Simulator

Disillusionment about life is the driving force of Cultist Simulator. Life got so hard and pointless for our main character that he does the only reasonable thing in this situation: invoke Lovecraftian space deities and create a cult.

Cultist Simulator is definitely one of the most original indie games of the recent years. It plays like a board game where time moves in real time. Players will have a bunch of cards on their board, each with a specific function. You use these cards on tasks, allowing this combination to generate a result that depends on the kind of card (or combination of cards) used, the type of task, and several other factors.

The game is extremely narrative-driven despite its very simple appearance. Depending on how you use your resources (cards) to do what, many events will unfold that may bring you many followers and maybe attract unwanted attention. The point of the game is, of course, to create a cult and use it to achieve one of the many victory conditions. The ways to do so are countless and discovering each of them is always amazing.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=heaH_KvB4eU

Yay or Nay?

If you like narrative-driven games that test your attention to details and resource management, Cultist Simulator is the perfect game for you. If it clicks, you will spend countless hours on it thanks to its huge replayability.

Check out our Cultist Simulator review here.

Earth Defense Force 4.1

For those who know the series, Earth Defense Force is the very definition of a power fantasy. In this saga, you play as an operative of the EDF, a special unit of the planet with the purpose of defending the Earth from menaces of planetary scale. The game starts with an invasion of giant insects wreaking havoc around the world’s cities. Our heroes will have to unleash an impressive arsenal against the menace, reaping tens of insects at every mission. As the game progresses, more kind of enemies will become available to fight, including Kaijus and aliens.

While the gameplay itself is pretty simple, the numerous possible weapon combinations for the available classes makes EDF 4.1 extremely replayable. Flying around with the wing diver or calling an air-strike with an Air Raider or even slamming against giant creatures with the mighty fencer is always as satisfying as the first time. The large available arsenal encourages experimentation making playing the same levels again always fun.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bE1eff1xvLg

 
 

Yay or Nay?

Earth Defense Force 4.1 is as straightforward as a game can be. Shoot all the things until they are dead and then do it again but with new toys. Considering that the game comes with all the available DLCs (which expand the already huge arsenal) it is definitely worth a try.

Warhammer: Vermintide 2

For many, the Vermintide series is a match made in heaven. The original game managed to combine the immediacy of the Left 4 Dead formula with the interesting setting of the End Times from the Warhammer fantasy franchise. The result is a game that managed to be fast-paced and fun while taking advantage of its peculiar set pieces.

For Vermintide 2, the developers took everything that made the first game a success and improved it. The main gameplay look remains the same but the game is prettier, bigger, and has more loot than ever. It manages to create the tension of fighting hordes and hordes of humanoid rats without ever making it boring, by throwing special enemies in the mix and a whole set of different objectives to reach, with a loot system that encourages experimentation, even with some limitations.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GfYBSWAOcZs

Yay or Nay?

Vermintide is a well-liked game and pretty known, so in a way, you already know if you like this one. If you enjoyed the first title, Vermintide 2 is nothing less than a treat because it’s more of that, but better. If the original Vermintide bored you, there’s nothing here that will change your mind.

Tower Unite

Many of you will remember a little not-exactly-game called Garry’s Mod (or Gmod). What Gmod did was create a tool for players to express their creativity creating their own scenes and experience using the Source engine. One of Gmod’s most popular mods was Gmod tower. In this mod, people could participate in a variety of minigames to earn credits to design their own apartment to chill out with their friends. At one point the devs of Gmod tower decided that it needed its own stand-alone release. That’s Tower Unite.

The game is still in Early Access and, in fact, it lacks many features as one can see from the “coming soon” labels in many places of the game. Despite that, there are already many mini-games available and a lot of customization options for the apartments, with even more thanks to the Steam Workshop support. You can play minigolf or the casino or a weird version of Super Monkey Ball. When you get bored with an activity, another one is ready to be picked up.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g6BXEpeOZP0

 

Yay or Nay?

Tower Unite gives a lot of freedom to the players to create their own fun. While still in Early Access, there’s already plenty to do and much more is coming with the regular updates.

Late Shift

Full motion videos are kind of a lost art. There used to be many more in the past, most of which have become notorious (ever heard of Plumbers don’t wear ties?). Despite the fact that FMVs became kind of a rare species, there are a few around that are worth playing. Late Shift is one of them. The game is a thriller where an innocent night guard is forced to participate in a grand heist.

Late Shift, as most FMVs, plays basically like a movie. At regular intervals, a choice prompt will appear on the screen and players will be granted a few seconds to click on one to decide how the main character will approach the situation. Each of the 60 available choices will bring the story forward in different ways towards one of the 7 possible endings.

The story is fairly entertaining and the acting is good enough to make the whole experience pleasurable. Sometimes the dialogues are a bit on the nose with their mentions of “choices” and probabilities, making some cracks appear on the fourth wall from time to time.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vzscNA5ZN4E

Yay or Nay?

While not perfect, the story of Late Shift is interesting and the acting actually not bad. It’s an enjoyable FMV but, obviously, not the best if you’re looking for a videogame with a lot of interaction.

Paradigm

Do you remember LucasArts point and click games? Titles like Day of the Tentacle, Grim Fandango, and the Monkey Island series set the example of what an adventure game should strive to be. Their signature humor and approach to gameplay have been inspiration for many titles to come. Paradigm wears that inspiration on its sleeve and brings honor to it.

Paradigm is the name of the main character of the game, a weird little man with a deformed head who lives in the country of Kusz. Paradigm lives in a surreal world where the 80s and the distant future meet halfway. In order to avoid a catastrophe in the nuclear plant where he works, our hero explores the bizarre world full of surreal characters and great challenges. The art style is interesting and kinda unique, and the humor is almost always on point, making Paradigm a great game for the point and click aficionados

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lS46leUFXek

Yay or Nay?

As mentioned earlier, Paradigm pays homage to the LucasArts adventure games with every frame, to the point that many titles are directly referenced in the game. If you like point and click game in that style, Paradigm is a sure bet.

Fight'N Rage

Imagine getting into a time machine and you find yourself in the early 90s in one of those huge arcades with a bunch of quarters in your pocket. Fight’N Rage is one of the games that you might find yourself playing in a situation like that.

Fight'N Rage is a sidescroller beat ’em up with a strong nostalgia component. It plays like the classics, such as Streets of Rage or Cadillacs and Dinosaurs. The player will take control of one of the three characters available at the start, each with their own moves and combos, and walk right beating the hell out of anyone that stands between them and the edge of the screen. There is a story of sorts but we all know that plot is not the focus. In these games, gameplay is king and Fight’N Rage does not disappoint.

Behind the cured yet deceivingly simple pixel art aesthetic, there is a surprisingly deep combat system, with many possible combo possibilities and super moves which feel great to chain one after another.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P2ujLI3FgQY

Yay or Nay?

Fight’N Rage is a simple pick-up-and-play arcade sidescroller that manages to scratch that button mashing itch with that hint of depth in the combat system to keep it interesting. The huge amount of unlockables will have you coming back often.

Slipstream

Slipstream reduces the racing genre to its quintessential essence. The game plays with just four buttons to accelerate, brake, and steer. With these simple commands, the game will ask you to participate in races in the traffic against weird characters, some of which are inspired by pop culture icons like Bob Ross.

The trick to succeed at the game is to learn how to drift. With a couple of quick taps of the brake and steer buttons, your car will be able to take even the sharpest turns without losing speed. It’s basically impossible to win a race without drifting. I know because it took me a while before going into the tutorial mode and see how it was done. The other trick is to use the slipstream. Driving behind another car for a while allows the player to catch that car’s slipstream, getting a significant boost in speed. That mechanic plays a critical role in all the races.

https://youtu.be/2955JiYgcQQ

Yay or Nay?

Even for those who, like me, don’t usually like racing games, Slipstream has something to offer. Its '80s aesthetic with the simplicity of its mechanics and the variety of game modes makes it an interesting play.

20 Minute Metropolis

This month’s Humble Original tells us what happens when city builders meet time challenges. 20 Minute Metropolis is pretty self-expanatory. The player starts each game with a city center and a bunch of randomly generated resources in the map, and they have 20 minutes to build the biggest and most efficient city as possible.

Building options are kept to the bare minimum in order to do not make the game too confusing because of the time constraints. The player can build only adjacent to other human-made constructions or roads. Connecting a building with people to a farm will generate food which, in turn, is converted in work that can be converted in other resources like plastic, stone, metal or wood by building the right resource extractors. As time goes on, bigger apartments will be required, which means that we need to generate power and bring electricity to the more advanced buildings. While the game itself is pretty simple and straightforward, maximizing the possible points in just 20 minutes can be a challenge.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f0Pk5eWaYio

Yay or Nay?

20 Minute Metropolis will test your planning skills under pressure. If you like city builders, this one offers a different experience than most. Definitely worth a couple of runs.

An old saying states “less is more” and this month’s Humble Monthly seems to take that saying by heart. Each game of March 2019 offers something pretty simple and straightforward to the player and does not try to be something different than advertised. The gameplay of each of this month’s games is condensed to its very essence and offers a pure experience for the player, be it the conceptual gameplay of Cultist Simulator or the old school point and click of Paradigm or the power fantasy simulator Earth Defense Force 4.1. Each game is at its purest which allows the player to really savor them.

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

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