On an average day about a dozen new games are released on Steam. And while we think that’s a good thing, it can be understandably hard to keep up with. Potentially exciting gems are sure to be lost in the deluge of new things to play unless you sort through every single game that is released on Steam. So that’s exactly what we’ve done. If nothing catches your fancy this week, we’ve gathered the best PC games you can play right now and a running list of the 2022 games that are launching this year.
Release: October 28
Launch price: $20 | £16 | AU$29.95
Signalis is an appealingly strange take on sci-fi survival horror, mixing dioramic pixel art graphics with a surplus of psychological dread. Protagonist Elster is a ‘Replika’ lost on a mysterious, icy planet, but based on early gameplay footage the game mostly takes place on an abandoned spaceship. Elster navigates these eerie environs in search of her “lost partner and lost dreams”, and as you’d expect, along the way there are plenty of puzzles to solve and enemies to contend with. At a time when modern horror games seem to be leaning more than ever into gore, Signalis opts instead for an oppressive mood of melancholy, taking its cues from the likes of Stanley Kubrick and David Lynch rather than a 1980s VHS video nasty.
Saturn Quest: R. U. N. E. 3000
Release: October 29
Developer: Arkhouse Telegraph
Launch price: $5.09 | £4.07 | AU$7.22
Here’s a fascinating blend of adventure and real time strategy, with surrealist pixel art to die for. Set on a mysterious space station where “illegal experiments” are conducted on the player character, this outing blends the seeming simplicity of a “Zelda-style boss arena” with an accessible take on RTS strategy gameplay. As the trailer above demonstrates, it’s quite a varied thing: expect classic 16-bit overhead exploration, the aforementioned RTS elements, as well as a sidescrolling schmup. This is actually the third Saturn Quest game: the one-person studio recommends playing the first two games before tackling this one. But do what you want. No one’s forcing you.
Release: October 28
Developer: Indigo Studios
Launch price: $22.49 | £18.89 | AU$34.19
Charon’s Staircase is a first-person horror game with a very appealing premise: you’re a secret agent tasked with destroying evidence of your regime’s oppressive past, all the better to win membership to the European Union. Chief among the evidence in need of destroying are some classified documents kept at the Oack Grove estate. Naturally, that’s where you’re headed, and naturally, it’s very spooky. What follows is the usual mix of exploration, puzzle solving, and ghoul evasion, but you’ll also discover that the regime you’re working for is a whole lot more effed up than originally thought.
Paper Cut Mansion
Release: October 28
Developer: Space Lizard Studio
Launch price: $18 | £15.29 | AU$26.05
Yet another horror game (because Halloween), this entry brings Paper Mario-style art direction to the roguelite genre. As you’d expect, Paper Cut Mansion looks more like a horror game than a whimsical Nintendo RPG, with a more mature and painterly take on the paper cut-out aesthetic. It’s a top down survival horror with procedurally generated environments and some other roguelite trappings, namely, permanent unlocks that help increase your chances of beating the game. The appeal of an endlessly replayable survival horror game—complete with puzzles, quests and baddies—is obvious, but it’s the art style that elevates Paper Cut Mansion.
Garbage Pail Kids: Mad Mike and the Quest for Stale Gum
Release: October 26
Developer: Retrotainment Games, Digital Eclipse
Launch price: $9 | £7.65 | AU$13.05
Not many people are aware, but The Garbage Pail Kids Movie is the best piece of cinema to emerge from the 1980s. That alone makes this 8-bit platformer worth investigation: sure, it’s just another retro-styled platformer at heart, but it’s an impressively orthodox one, inheriting even the uglier aspects of ye olde NES games like Wonder Boy. You get to play as four of the Garbage Pail Kids, each with their own abilities, and there are six “exciting” levels to explore, all filled with annoying enemies and traps. The Steam page warns that the game “features pixelated and childlike depictions of flatulence, buttocks, vomit, mucus, and more” so be well warned: this is a delightfully stoopid videogame.
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