Steam Greenlight & Games Worth Your Votes

Steam Greenlight

Whichever way you look at it, the future of Mac (and PC) gaming lies within the Steam ecosystem. While large AAA publishers can set up their own storefront and DRM measures (i.e. Uplay, Origin, Battlenet), many indie developers know if their game doesn’t land on Steam it probably means their game doesn’t even have the chance to land in the hand of most players. This is why Steam’s Greenlight page is an important, albeit very flawed, system that gamers need to enthusiastically venture into.

With the Greenlight program, Valve sought to fix the problem getting onto Steam by letting us, the gamers, vote on projects that we wished to see in the storefront that we all love. Unfortunately, due to fixing votes for free keys, low effort games hogging real estate, and a very low discoverability rate, Greenlight isn’t the solution that we hoped it would be. Even Valve’s head honcho Gabe Newell said “In other words, we should stop being a dictator and move towards much more participatory, peer-based methods of sanctioning player behavior. Greenlight is a bad example of an election process. We came to the conclusion pretty quickly that we could just do away with Greenlight completely, because it was a bottleneck rather than a way for people to communicate choice”. 

If a developer was not within the top 100 within the first few hours they uploaded their game into the voting process, it was very likely that the game would be buried underneath the hundred of new Greenlight pages that are created everyday. Due to all this, Valve is looking to shut down Greenlight with a new program that helps each developer show their games in an equal environment. 

However, Green Light is still an ecosystem where you can find unique and interesting ideas that you can support. Gamers might even find Kickstarter projects that need help to get funded! I’ve done my duty here to wade my way through the shovelware to show you guys some of the most interesting Greenlight games that need voting, or are already in the process of getting on to Steam. Show em some support!

Ghost in the Machine 

Ghost in the Machine Ghostly Machines Indeed

Ghostly Machines Indeed

Gameplay/Greenlight Page: http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=245693211 

Try the demo here: http://mikejmoffitt.com/pages/08-gitm.html 

Dev’s Website: http://mikejmoffitt.com/index.html 

I love platformers that make me want to pull my hair out, only to give me the greatest sense of satisfaction when I beat one of its levels. I couldn’t get enough of precision based platforming from the likes They Bleed Pixels, VVVVVV, and Super Meat boy, so Ghost in the Machine seems to scratch that itch for me. 

With a minimalistic four color graphic palate, a pounding chiptune soundtrack and tight controls, Ghost in the Machine seems like another rage inducing platformer for you masochists out there. The game is already out for OSX, and with a level editor in the works you can already get knee deep into the game.

Impact Winter 

Impact Winter I wouldn't want to be stuck in those clothes

I wouldn't want to be stuck in those clothes

Gameplay/Greenlight Page: http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=379015391 

Dev’s Website: http://www.mojobones.co.uk

Though it had an unsuccessful Kickstarter campaign, Impact Winter went through a various number of changes to become the wintery apocalypse survival game it has become now. 

The premise is Earth, eight years after a large asteroid has decimated the earth. But, unlike most survival games, there is no monster to fear, although the game has a very “The Thing” vibe going on with its blinding snowfall. The game instead concentrates on four survivors, whom the player needs to take care of. This includes the cold, hunger, and even the emotional needs of the characters. 

Developer, mojo bones, promises a fresh new experience every playthrough, with dynamic weather and obstacles. This is definitely a game you want to keep your eyes on.

Drift Stage 

Drift Stage Drift, drift baby

Drift, drift baby

Gameplay/Greenlight Page: http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=354509686 

Try the demo here: http://supersystems.itch.io/driftstagealpha 

Game Website: http://www.driftstagegame.com/ 

If you’re fond of fast paced arcade racing in the likes of Outrun, Drift Stage may be the next game you might want to get your hands on. With a successful Kickstarter campaign, the game is looking at a December 2015 release. 

One of the most slickest aspects of Drift Stage is it’s visuals. It mixes the retro aesthetics of 80s arcade racers, with a 3D twist. Hell, there’s even a photo mode built in so players can take pictures of their most insane turns. 

The soundtrack can only be described as, rad, with jamming synth beats to make sure player’s driving experience is the coolest it can be. 

The tracks of Drift Stage remind of Trackmania’s with its endlessly winding paths and loops. The drifting mechanic is definitely the focus here, with lots of sharp turns for your car to stylishly execute.

Catacomb Kids 

Catacomb Kids Kids in Catacombs. That's new.

Kids in Catacombs. That's new.

Gameplay/Greenlight Page: http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=192229324 

Dev’s Website: http://www.fourbitfriday.com/index.htm

Steam Page coming 2/20/15: http://store.steampowered.com/app/315840/ 

I.Cant.Get.Enough.Roguelikes(lites). If you take a look at my personal gaming history you’ll see that games like The Binding of Isaac, Tales of Maj'eyal, Dungeons of Dredmor, and Rouge Legacy dominate playtime. So when I saw Catacomb Kids, I instantly fell in love. 

With its randomly generated dungeons, fast paced combat, devious traps and numerous ways to destroy enemies, I couldn’t believe the myriad of mechanics that were at work in the Catacomb Kids. You can, for example, use a rock to distract enemies to get behind them, only to knock down a torch on a nearby wall to make sure they burn into a crisp before they fall to their deaths into a pool of lava. 

The best part is you can partake this adventure in local co-op, where I’m sure the action would only get more frantic. Catacomb kids is a journey gamers should all check out, and with its early access build coming out in few days should think about supporting. 

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