Lots Of Games For Charity (and $30)

Image copyright Yogscast

This is one of those posts I meant to do a while ago but wasn’t sure about it as the games are being done in the style of an advent cakendar so you don’t know what you’ll get in the days to come. Also I know a lot of my followers probably don’t follow me for games but even if you don’t this might be something you could buy as a gift for someone who does (again, I know late for Christmas sorry).

You may or may not have heard if the Yogscast, they’re a group of gamers who make YouTube videos on a range if games though they started out with WoW and became well known because of Minecraft. They’ve grown and for the past four or five years have done livestreams around Christmas for various charities. The past year or two Humble Bundle have joined up with them so as well as giving for a good cause, or causes, you get a bunch of games too. This year there are six main charities: Mental Health, Special Effect, ILGA (International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association), Cancer Research, WDC (Whales and Dolphin Conservation) and Games Aid. However this year there’s also a feature where you can search for your own charities or ones in your area and then move sliders at the bottom to decide which gets how much.

So far this year the running total is $2.4 million (a bit more but it changes as I type so I’m rounding) and sales of various things and subscriptions get added so the actual total will go up after December.

If you want to read more on how to get the games and what games are actually in it keep reading or check out the website atย the Humble Bundle Jingle Jam website. You do have to be quick, I think it disappears at the end if the year so hopefully you’re reading this before 2017!

This year’s games have a big range though most fall into the adventure, horror or puzzle categories for me with a range of art and playing styles. These games have all been donated by the Devs so some of them have run out of keys due to the amount that have been claimed already but most of the games are still available. These games or things you get range from cosmetic, premium and bonus items for free to play games to full games along with DLC or additional exclusives added on in one package. It was said at the beginning there would be more than 60 games worth over $600 (if I’m remembering that right) though a lot of the games are in sales at the moment so it’s going by the RRP I think.

To get all of the games you have to pay $30 but with the amount you get I think it’d be worth it even without the charity side of it. If you donate $5 you will often get your message read on their stream (this does depend on amount of donations in the stream and who’s doing it) and you get a print and play game designed around a previous stream highlight from a Civ 5 game called Datlof that is pretty enjoyable but probably won’t appeal to people not a fan of the Yogscast.

These streams are on every day, though the last is tomorrow the 30th for live gameplay and they’ll be streaming highlights afterwards. Almost all of the streams are also up on the Yogscast Live YouTube channel, things like the karaoke aren’t for copyright reasons, so if you want to watch them without subscribing then that’s the place to find them or the individual Yogscast members’ channels.

I’m not going to list all of the games, follow the link at the beginning of this post to see the list, as it is very long and I have no idea what a lot of them are so I’m going to just emotion the ones I’m most excited to play, I’m interested in it I already own or have seen gameplay discussion know what they’re about.

The main game I want to play in this bundle is Kholat. It’s one I have actually had in my wish list on Steam for a while. It’s a survival horror game based around a true mystery of a group of scientists who went missing and we’re later found dead on the mountain. It is narrated by Sean Bean (always a plus for me) and, as far as I recall, it includes diary entries from actual members of the party. It’s definitely a horror and is one of those ones that seems that have a supernatural element to it. I know this isn’t a new game and lots of YouTubers have playthroughs of it, I remember watching Markiplier do one, but I might do a proper review of this in the future if my computer can handle it.

One that I already own, but I love it and it’s on the iPad so I’m happy to get a computer copy, is Botanicula. It’s made by the same people as Machinarium and is such a beautiful game. It is a puzzle game but it gives me Studio Ghibli feels for some reason when I play it. There’s no talking and you can get hints in the form of diagrams so it’s one of those games that can be picked up by anyone who speaks any language. You play as little creatures who are trying to save their world and you have to work together as they each have different skills for the different situations. It’s fairly challenging but at the same time relaxing.

Another I already own is BitTrip Runner 2, a scrolling game where you have to run along, dodge obstacles and collect coins. It’s got a very cartoony art style and the rules are simple the play even if the levels aren’t. It’s one of those egames that gets harder as you play but you get a bit of muscle memory and it definitely tests your reflexes as you go on. As it is all running it can get a bit repetitive but if you like this style of game you’ll probably enjoy it, though you’ll likely already own it as it’s been out a while and was popular on YouTube at one time.

One that has been around a while and has had plenty of coverage on YouTube is Goat Simulator. It’s not one I’ve played and I can see it being one of those you play a bit for novelty but not one you go back to all the time as it’s just being a goat and destroying things trying to get achievements. It definitely doesn’t take itself too seriously and there are patches and different modes to play that do switch it up a bit. I can see it being a fun one to play for short periods of time as a light filler and it’s definitely different from any others I already own.

Some of the others I’m looking forward to trying are Hue (changing the colours of the background to get round puzzles), Mirrormirror (another puzzle game that uses mirrors somehow), Two Digits (apparently very hard maths puzzle game) and one called Back to Bed where you have to guide a sleepwalking g man through obstacles that reminds me of a game I played years ago called Mr Snoozleberg (just found out it was released in 1999 so very old for an internet game). Also a collector’s edition version if Guns of Icarus, bonus bits for Robocraft and I think Guild Wars 2 was at one time well known but it’s been out a while, as has Psychonauts, so will be interesting to see how well it’s aged. Tales Across Time looks good too, one where you control different people living in the same place but different time periods, will be interesting to see how that one plays.

As I said before I’m not going through everything but there’s a good range if games in the bundle and you can always gift ones you don’t want. Also if any of you have these games any that are your favourites to try out first? There are so many some will sit in my Steam library for a while so recommendations on where to start would be great. Not sure how much I’ll play the multiplayer ones (apart from Robocraft when that works again on my computer I will be losing hours in that game again). I always worry when it’s older games with an established fan base that they’ll get annoyed with someone just starting out, though I know how the games work.

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