Two notes before I get started though: We love the “console gaming” experience. So this list is only geared towards games that look great on a big screen tv and play great with a controller. If you have a PC around, I highly recommend getting an X-Box style controller like this (or the wireless version here) and an HDMI cable and just leaving Steam in “Big Picture” mode.
Second, since I’m a Humble Bundle monthly subscriber, I have a link I can share that should generate an additional 10% off of any games on this list. Try it out and let me know if it works. There’s no membership needed to redeem it, so might as well try it out. Now, onto the games:
Easily our favorite game of the year. Crawl is a roguelike party game that starts off with a set of desperate adventures killing each other in order to survive an adventure gone wrong. A winner emerges and continues their quest through the caves, but is haunted by the ghosts of the other players. The art is fantastic, the game is ADDICTIVE, and the humor is spot on. It’s even fun in single player mode. Top of my list… buy it buy it buy it!
This game is even better than I thought it would be, which is crazy because I thought it was going to be GREAT. It’s a first person shooter where time only moves where you do. Basically, it makes you feel like Neo in the Matrix… or Braid meets Halo. The end result feels like more of a strategy/puzzle solving game than a typical shoot ’em up.
Another roguelike that’s incredibly addictive. If you aren’t familiar, roguelikes are games that auto-generate unique levels that no-one else will ever encounter again. Roguelikes are usually top down, but as the definition has broadened, we’ve started to see more and more roguelike platformers. Spelunky is probably the most popular of which, but Rogue Legacy is more my cup of tea. Every time you die, a new and unique hero is created. Don’t get too attached though, because the levels can be pretty crazy.
A puzzle solving platformer from the creators of Limbo. Nuff said.
Haven’t played Limbo yet? You should probably fix that too.
The Stanley Parable
Tooth And Tail
I’m already a fan of rodent themed real time strategy games, but Tooth and Tail is so much more than that. It’s strategic, but with a more casual feel (compared to Starcraft). As I said before, all the games on this list are intended to work well with a controller, but it’s rare to find an RTS that works well with a controller.
We’ve been waiting a long time for this game to go on sale. It’s one of those games that all of your friends will say “You have to get it”, but you never do… until now because it’s on sale. It’s worth it.
One of the few “Lovecraftian” games that actually gets it right. It’s extremely beautiful and well researched game based on At the Mountains of Madness. Takes about a weekend to play, which is just perfect for me.
Another roguelike game, but one that plays great with a controller. I saw the creators of this game give a talk at Roguelike Celebration in SF last weekend. Imagine my surprise when I went to go buy it and discovered it was on sale for 80% off! I’ve been playing it non-stop ever since.
Gorgeous and fun. Get it while it’s on sale.
I backed this game on Kickstarter a few years ago and have no regrets. It’s a pixel art game with an eye for detail and characters that seem to come alive in front of you. There are so many small little animations and quirks that really make this game feel like a living creature.
This is one of those games that everybody needs to own. The basic premise is that it’s a fencing game, filled with strategy and timing. It’s weird and addictive and I just want to master it. I need to master it.
Imagine a game where you could play as everything. The dog, the car, the beetle, the galaxy, a bacterium. Everything is a game unlike anything else you’ve ever played. In fact, I wouldn’t even describe it as a game. Our favorite way to play Everything is to set a couple simple rules, then sit back and watch as the game explores itself. It’s hard to explain, but a real work of art. In fact, I wish I could have a digital picture frame that just has Everything running on it all the time, so I could just walk by and see some new perspective at any given time. Designed by David O’Reilly and distribute by Double Fine.
Crypt of the Necrodancer
A roguelike dungeon explorer with a really cool rhythm mechanic added to it. Plays great with a controller and fun in single player or multiplayer mode.
Some great deals here. Psychonauts, Costume Quest 2, Stacking, Massive Chalice, Headlander, Iron Brigade, Brutal Legend. Just buy them all.
Let me know if I missed any good deals, but if it doesn’t have full controller support, I don’t want to hear about. Full controller or it isn’t worth mentioning.
Don’t forget, use this link before you buy your games for an additional 10% off. I don’t get a referral or anything, I’m just sharing it because why not.
One more thing, Steam is also doing their own sale this weekend and there are some great games there. I especially recommend picking up Ronin, a fantastic platformer that switches into a turn based strategy game when in combat. I had my doubts, but this system works fantastic and I highly recommend this game and any others by Devolver Digital.