Paradox Sale on Steam! Pick up Magicka and Majesty for cheap!

This weekend, from June 7th – June 10th, 2012, Steam is having a sale on titles by Paradox. If you’re not sure who Paradox is, that’s alright, it took me a second as well to remember. They don’t have a gigantic selection in their stable of games, but two titles stick out that I highly recommend: Majesty and Magicka.

Magicka straight-up is one of the most fun action titles I have ever played. It combines an ever-present satirical humor with a “discover the best combinations on your own” dynamic gameplay. The premise is that you are a wizard from from a sacred order and have to use an elemental spellcasting system to stop a big bad evil. You have eight general schools of magic: Water, Fire, Lightning, Earth, Cold, Shield, Arcane, and Life that you combine to create devastating effects.  Combine Arcane with Fire to create a burning laser beam, combine ice with earth to create a huge snowball, combine earth and shield to erect a wall of spikes surrounding you. The combinations are numerous. You also have to be a quick typist as you set up spells by typing them in with the Q,W,E,R,A,S,D, and F keys. Then on top of this, you get higher “magicks” that require a specific combination. Think you’re a fast typer? Here are a few spell combinations I wrote down for quick reference.

Thunderbolt: QFASA ; Tornado: DQFQQF ; Conflagrate: FQFFQFFQ ; Thunderstorm: QFQFASA ; Napalm: QFDWFF (Napalm is only available in the Magicka: Vietnam DLC, but it’s well worth it).

Now how do I get my rogues to stop stealing…

The other title I recommend Majesty is a fantasy, real-time strategy title with one gigantic caveat: you don’t have direct control of your units. Essentially, you build a castle, then you start building “guilds” around your castle. A warrior’s guild, a thieve’s guild, a ranger’s guild, etc. Through these guilds you hire heroes who will show up and then meander around your town. They’ll wander off on their own, find monsters to slay, and acquire gold. Well, now you have to give them something to do with this gold, so you build inns, blacksmith shops, marketplaces, and trading posts. Your heroes buy stuff and upgrade their equipment, then you collect taxes generated by the sales and put it back into your town’s infrastructure. You convince your heroes to explore and attack by placing reward flags. Want that dragon killed? Put a nice bounty on it’s head and your heroes will rush for the reward. You still have scenarios to accomplish and foes to fight off, but it adds a nice twist to the standard real-time strategy model.

Game well, my friends. Game well.

\\ Ocho

P.S. – If you are an MMO player like myself, another title recently introduced to Steam is the Lord of the Rings Online, and a Starter Pack. Although the game is accessed pretty much the same way as before, I like using Steam as a platform not only for easy screenshots, but also for the nice extras thrown your way for using Steam. The Starter Pack comes with a Noble Grey Steed, Northdowns, Evendim, and Misty Mountains quest packs, a token that gives an extra 25% experience on monster kills, and 1,000 Turbine Points on top of that. Right now, it’s still at its introductory price of $15, which isn’t a bad deal at all, especially if you’re a new or free player.

If You Don’t Get The Humble Indie Bundle V, You’re Just Not A Gamer

I’ll flat out say it: If you don’t pick up the HumbleBundle.com deal, you’re probably not even a gamer. Really, look at this list!

Amnesia: The Dark Descent (Steam price: $19.99)

Superbrothers: Sword and Sworcery EP (Steam price $7.99)

LIMBO (Steam price $9.99)

Psychonauts (Steam price $9.99)

And if you pay more than the average…

Bastion (Steam price $14.99)

Do the math! That’s $62.95 worth of games.

Now, I can’t really speak for Amnesia, Superbrothers, or Bastion, but I have played Limbo and Psychonauts and I can guarantee that they are worth Whatever-price-you-want-to-pay-for-them! I don’t know if there is a minimum, but that means if you even donate $1, you get the top 4 games, but you shouldn’t only donate that as the money is going to good causes like Child’s Play and the Electronic Frontier Foundation. If you pay more than the average, which is currently at $7.49 as of this writing and climbing quick with every purchase made, you also get Bastion, too, which looks pretty sweet.

Psychonauts: From a little known studio called “Double Fine Productions”. Oh, wait! They’re known by everybody!

Well, what are you waiting for! Go donate!

\\ Ocho

GameTime! Max Payne Screenshots

I’m currently working my way through the original Max Payne, and I’m loving it. Its exactly as I remember it. Gritty, raw, and with one of the best “bullet-time” iterations in any shooter. Although, at one point, I overheard a conversation between two guys warming up around a burning trashcan, and one said “It may be the end of the world as we know it, but I don’t feel fine.” Yeah, that definitely dated the game a bit.

Warning… these screenshots do have a little blood in them…

I made it up to and through the level where Max was slipped something and ended up in a nightmare, reliving past horrors. Not pictured in the last shot: the endless cries of his wife calling for help and his baby crying. If you haven’t played it and enjoy a little of the macabre, I highly suggest you pick it up, although really, I’d wait for a sale first. $9.99 is a little much for an 11 year old game.

\\ Ocho

P.S. – If you’re looking for great deals on games, I recently found SteamGameSales.com. It shows all the discounted games across many different services, like Steam, Impulse, and a ton I’ve never heard of.

Lord of the Rings Online Mithril Edition 50% Off on Impulse – May 10th, 2012

'Get Her'. That was you plan all along? 'Get Her'?

[Just FYI: This deal occurred around the time of posting, May 10th, 2012 and has already ended. It may go on sale again in the future, but this is only about that one time deal. I still highly suggest picking it up if it does go down in price, though, as it’s well worth it.]

For all of you deal hunters, going on right now until May 15th, Impulse, GameStop’s online presence, is having a sale on the Lord of the Rings Online Mithril Edition for 50% off. That brings it down to $15.

If you have a lifetime membership to LotRO, this is worth picking up. If you are a current subscriber, this is worth picking up. If you are a Pay-as-you-go player, this is DEFINITELY worth picking up. If you live under a rock, you may want to pass. But here is why you want to get it as soon as possible:

1) Steed of the Horse-Lords Mount – A nice steed so that you don’t have to spend in-game money at a low level for your first one. You still have to spend Turbine Points to get the riding ability, but they are easy to get in-game at that level.

2) 2000 Turbine Points – 2000 TP generally costs around $25, so if for no other reason the TP alone is worth the price.

3) Trollshaws, Eregion, Mines of Moria, and Lothlorien quest packs. – If you are not paying by subscription or don’t have the lifetime account, you need to purchase Quest Packs. If you don’t have these areas, this is a great way to pick them up. Also, if you are currently paying by subscription and decide to stop, you’ll still have these quest packs.

4) Possible Glitch – VIP status for 1 day – No, really, I bought the deal, and it instantly set me as a VIP to expire the next day. If you are a free player, you know how Turbine rolls… if you want to use more traits, extra bags, currency cap, fast travel, auction slots, you must subscribe or pay for them piece by piece. However, if you do subscribe and then stop, Turbine isn’t going to pull the rug out from under you, you get to keep the individual character improvements you already have. Disclaimer: Just a word of warning, though, the 1 day VIP is a glitch and is not intended. Since it is not intended, it may not work in every instance.

The process is a little tricky. You pay for it, then a code arrives in your e-mail that you enter in Turbine’s Account page. But watch out, you have to mark it as owning a game card, but then opting to enter it in later.

So there you go. Mount, Turbine Points at a great discounted rate, quest packs, and individual character unlocks. If you play Lord of the Rings Online, you have no reason not to pick this up.

\\ Ocho

P.S. – A Casual Stroll to Mordor has a write up about this deal as well, and Goldenstar is one of my favorite bloggers, so check out her take as well.

EDIT: It has come to my attention that the 1-day VIP is indeed a glitch, and I have edited the post to reflect this. You might still get it, but it is certainly not intended. It is far from game breaking, however, and I still highly suggest picking up the Mithril Edition while you still can on sale. As I mentioned, the discounted TP alone is worth the cost.