Steam sales are a beautiful thing. As someone who was raised on a staple diet of Sony and the occasional Gameboy, finding the Mother Superior of cheapness that is PC gaming, the Steam Sale is one of the best things in my calendar. However, despite all the good it does in keeping me at my PC and thus out of mischief, it’s a hideous beast which costs me a lot of money every time it rears its ugly head. I can’t help myself. The angel Gabenewell descends from the heavens on high, and slaps everything with His Almighty Discounts. I can’t resist a cheap game, and I throw my money at Steam while rationalizing the purchase, spouting “Oh I’ll play this later” or “This is a classic I definitely need to play it”, and other such lies. Here are 5 games which I have bought, and now sit abandoned in the deep dark recesses of my C:/.
1. Hitman: Codename 47
Wow, this game did not age well… Released in the year 2000, this game is one of those games which I booted, stomped through the tutorial and went “Huh? What the hell do I do now??” Steam tells me I managed 47 minutes, which amuses me greatly. Sadly, I don’t think I’ll bother adding any more time to that number. I hate games that hold your hand more than the next guy – I couldn’t stand Arkham City for that exact reason – but this game drops you in at the deep end and runs away screaming. It didn’t control well, it wasn’t intuitive and it just confused the hell out of me during that first hour. Honestly, it made me give up and start a new build on Skyrim. There have been a number of games in this franchise since, with the most recent edition gathering a whole host of bad publicity with the sexy-nun-punching debacle, but I don’t know if this is a franchise I will bother returning to. I already have Blood Money and Silent Assassin sitting on my hard drive as part of the same bundle, but why would you bother playing those as these days, when you have Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag?
The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim is a fantastic game, isn’t it? I loved that much that I went out and bought myself a copy of the 3rd and 4th games in the series. I figured, Oblivion, let’s work our way backwards and start with Hell… or something like that. Oblivion was a laugh, but didn’t hold a candle to Skyrim. I finished it some time around level 13, after just blitzing the main story quests, and a couple of the Daedric side quests; The Daedric Prince of Madness, Sheogorath, is one of my favorite game antagonists of all time, and I loved his expansion pack. Still amused by the end of Oblivion, I booted up the 2002-flavoured goodness that is Morrowind and my smile turned into a frown [Editor’s note – total sacrilege!]. I killed the game and retextured it with a ton of mods, and tried again. I got a total of 111 minutes in before I gave up on reading text. Call me spoiled, but if you aren’t reading it to me, it’s not important. I mashed the spacebar, skipped all the text and had zero fucking clue what was going on. This game is one I am still interested in, and I will play the hell out of the Skywind mod if it ever gets released. Morrowind on Skyrim’s engine sounds like a good way to invest another 60 hours of my time, give or take.
3. Grand Theft Auto 3
This came in a bundle with the Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, which I regard as not only the pinnacle of the franchise, but of the entire shoot-em-up-gangster-style genre. Now why the hell would I play the 2001 edition of GTA 3 when I can stomp around San Andreas with my cornrows, flame-thrower and a badass jetpack? I didn’t even really like GTA 3 the first time I tried (and failed) to finish it, but then again, I’m not one to turn away an extra game for an extra 50p. Damn you Steam Sale…
4. System Shock 2
Again, I only lasted 2 and a bit hours on this game. I kinda feel shamed by this fact, considering it has inspired great works such as the Bioshock and Dead Space franchises, both of which are in my top 3 franchises of all time, along with Resident Evil. Resident Evil 4, by the way, is intense and you should play it. I have heard many a long tale about how incredible System Shock 2 is, and how it is one of the games I have to play before I die, but after starting out and getting my ass handed to me while not having a clue what the hell was happening, I just sighed the word “naaaaaaah”, and moved on. This game, may be one of the greatest games of all time for all I know, but in its current state I’m not going to get any more joy out of it. If this was re-released as an anniversary edition like they did with Halo: Combat Evolved, I would be all over that preorder. A retexturing and a more up to date UI would bring this game to a whole new audience, making it more accessible to newcomers like myself, but I sadly don’t really see that happening. Who knows, with the loyal fanbase this game has, there may already be a string of mods which bring this game into 2014 in the way that I want.Horror may be a core theme of this game, but it’s hard to be scared by anything when you’re this jaded about anything, let alone the antiquated graphics.
5. Deus Ex
It’s well documented how much I love Deus Ex: Human Revolution. I bought it on the recommendation of a friend who wouldn’t stop nagging me to get it. His nagging paid off, and I have not looked back since my sneaky endeavors as Adam Jenson came to an end. In fact, I’ve completed Human Revolution around 5 or 6 times now, and would put it in my top 10 games of all time. This love spurred me to pick up the Game of the Year edition of the original Ion Storm game, Deus Ex. I started my adventures as JC Denton, and about an hour later I stopped. For some reason I just couldn’t get into this game. I came back a few months later and tried again, but for the life of me this game just doesn’t mesh with me. I don’t know if it’s the abhorrent textures, or the fact that I broke the game 20 minutes in by jumping over a wall I shouldn’t have been able to jump over, but this game defeated me. I would definitely be interested in a re-release with a decent engine and a semi-decent graphic overhaul, but until that day, I will lay Denton to rest, 2 hours into the game. So there you go; 5 games I have which I will never finish, thank you very much, Steam Sale. What games were you expecting to see that you didn’t? Are there any of these 5 which you can encourage me to attempt one last time? Let me know in the comments below.