Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Great Games for under $4

I have never been one to rush out and buy a video game the first week it is out. Frankly I have never been one to buy a game till it drops to about 50% of its original price. That is if it's a PC game. Xbox or Nintendo or Sony I'll just play on your system. So I got to thinking about how to get games for the cheapest possible (legally). I think I may have found it.

So Valve's Steam has been given a lot of flack in the past, but is currently on the good side of most gamers. If you don't know what Steam is I'll tell you. Its a content distribution system, and additionally a piracy deterrent. Say you want to buy Halflife. Well normally you would drive to the store buy the product, get taxed on it and return with a CD and a serial code. You install from the CD and enter the serial code and go. Well with Steam all you have to do is log on with your free account and purchase the game. Its is downloaded to your computer and you never have to worry about loosing that serial key or cd. Its always yours. If you buy a new computer just re-download it. If you are on someone else's computer you can download it there. The real jewel to this is the sheer amount of content it offers. I defy you to find a new copy of the original Counter-Strike. You're not going to find it anywhere, but on valve you can buy it for $10. If you don't mind old graphics its a great game and lots of people are still playing it online.

Now one of the offerings is a complete Valve package. For $80. Now thats alot of money for games that aren't very new, but its still a bargain if you don't have these games. This includes Halflife, HL2, Counter-strike and CS:S, Day of Defeat and DoD:S, HL2 Ep:1, HL2 Deathmatch, and some other junk. There are about 17 games there. Not all are worth playing, I'm looking at you Ricochet. By my estimate about 8-12 are really worth playing depending on your personal style.

But there is more.

I'm talking mods. Source was designed to be modded. And there are dozens of HL mods that are already established. Valve lists quite a few of these on Steam.

Here are a list of mod that you can play with this pack that are worth it:

Hidden:Source - Very scary not many people on at any one time. Beta 4 is very playable.
Source Forts - Clever mod of Deathmatch. Seems difficult for new players.
Natural Selection - Like playing Starcraft in FPS. Source version in production.
Digital Paintball -If you are a fan of paintball I guess. Source version in Alpha
Dystopia- Source mod. Bizarre and hard to get into. Think Tron meets Quake
Gary's Mod Version 9 - HL2 sandbox. Wanna see who will win against Zombies and Combine?
HL2 Capture the Flag - Interesting mod of Deathmatch. Includes new weapons and Parkour.
Minerva - Adam Foster didn't think Valve did a good job on map design and did his own. 2/3 parts done.
Pirates Knights Vikings II - HL2 mod. Will be testing this one out.
Plan of Attack - Tactical game the way Counter-Strike should have been.
Zombie Panic - Its like resident evil only the zombies are real people. Now you can kill the teammates that let you down.
The Trenches - Sort of DoD for WW1

This is just a quick overview of some of the mods for the above pack. Most of these games are worth playing and almost all are multiplayer. All are worth something. So theres about 20 games there that I mentioned. At $80 that comes out to about $4 a game. Not to mention the other mods that are out there. Many of these will play on an older computer. All will play on my laptop. So if I left off any HL or Source mods send them my way I'd like to try them.

Remember just say no to $60 games!

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