Mostly Everything

(More than) a week of PC game launches

Hey it’s me Jayvee. I’m still here. It’s been more than a week since my last update. Blame it on the handful of new game launches the past few days. If you’re on the PC and looking for new titles to play, here’s a compilation of some of the free (and not so free) games that are worth dipping your mouse and keyboard into. I actually won’t include Borderlands 2, Guild Wars 2 and the new WoW expansion as these are already no-brainer titles that you must pick up if you enjoy the genre — Borderlands 2 is an RPG-action first person shooter that is already claiming the title for biggest game sold this 2012. It outsold its precursor. You can pick up a copy in Datablitz. Guild Wars 2 is of similar interest, being a skill-oriented MMO that appeals to gamers who have absolutely no time to play World of Warcraft. Two good things about it — no monthly fees and the game doesn’t penalize you for not playing often. Then of course there’s Mists of Pandaria which comes out today!

See, that whole paragraph was dedicated to games I haven’t recommended. Let’s do this!

Planetside 2
Screenshot above. If you’re into stuff like Battlefield 2, meet the original title that started massive scale combat. Planetside 2’s title is such because it really makes you feel like you’re in a huge planet where several mini-battles are happening in different areas of the map. Although still in beta, you can try requesting for an invite. The game will be free to play online when it launches.

Mechwarrior Online
It’s been a long time waiting, but you can now check out Mechwarrior Online in its beta form. If you were a fan of the original Mechwarrior series of games from way way back, the franchise continues in a free-to-play online skirmish. You can reserve your pilot name and get into the beta here.

FTL is finally out of invite-only and for USD $9.99 on Steam you can get what I dub as the “darling indie game of the year.” If you like the grit space opera feel of Joss Whedon’s Firefly and absolutely love Star Trek, FTL brings the desire to command your own rickety starship to life. To me, FTL is the Left 4 Dead of the space simulator genre, where you always barely make it alive to the next jump point. Rerouting power, killing fires, dealing with boarding parties … all in a day’s work for an alliance space captain. And yes, you will die. A lot.

Torchlight II
It’s finally out — if you enjoyed Diablo III but after a while suffered from attrition of repetitive grinding, well guess what? Torchlight II absolutely delivers a better experience in bringing in end-game content even just early on. Rares and uniques at level 3? Most definitely! I classify Torchlight II as somewhat similar to Guild Wars II in the sense that the game doesn’t make you work too hard to feel like you’re doing end-game content as the item drops are insane and the spells all look rather powerful even during the early levels of play. There is a bit of a hardcore element to it since Runic decided to not allow you to completely re-roll your skills (you can only re-roll the last 3 skill points you bought). Runic also opened the game up to support 3rd party modding tools so expect the shelf life of Torchlight II to go on for a couple of years. Also, 6 player multiplayer and LAN support. Yes folks, this game supports offline LAN play, just like the good ‘ol days. It’s USD $19.99 on Steam.

Black Mesa
The original Half Life re-invented for the modern day computer. This game is an absolute must acquire. It’s fan made, endorsed by Valve and enhances on the original Half Life experience from the 90’s. Best of all, it’s free.

Half Life was an important landmark in the gaming industry because it took first person story-telling to a new level with scripted events, making your typical shooter more than just about blowing things up. The new and re-imagined Half Life runs on the Source engine which Valve uses for its games such as Left 4 Dead and Counterstrike.