A couple of weeks ago, I decided to go and spend $20 on a random selection of games that were cheap as dirt. Of those twenty games, some were great, while others were total garbage. A majority of the games featured are short and sweet and, given the price tag, would you expect anything different? Sometimes you want to throw a few dollars into your ever-growing collection of video games, and there’s nothing wrong with that. However, sometimes that comes with the burden of financial insecurity. To help ease that, here are ten cheap (and free!) games that may be worth your consideration if you’re looking to ball on a budget.
Starting off simple, aMAZE 2 is a small puzzle game where your objective is to get the ball from the beginning of the maze to the end. It’s a simple concept with a nice aesthetic to compliment the simplistic gameplay. All you have to do is use your trusty WASD keys (or the arrows, if you’re into that kind of thing) to move the ball around the lengthy labyrinths. It’s not something you’ll sink hours at a time into. However, it is a nice addition to anybody’s library if they’re ever looking for a solid destress session.
You’re dropped into a map and must survive an onslaught of enemies for as long as you can before you become overwhelmed. That is the goal behind Swarmlake. With pleasant geometric graphics and 10,000 enemies coming at you at once, the main goal here is to improve your score each time.
There’s no clear-cut explanation as to why you do anything you do in HellGunner, but that doesn’t detract too much from the fact this game is a fun way to kill a couple of minutes, and mercenaries. Stranded when your helicopter crashes, you’re tasked with moving from objective to objective all while gunning down mercs and zombies as you make your way through this game. I still have no idea what the premise or the point behind this game is, but it was 99 cents, so can you really complain?
DERE EVIL .EXE
Part platformer, part horror, and all gripping. DERE EVIL .EXE isn’t too difficult of a game, but it pushes the boundaries of the typical platformer by adding a pinch of a horror element to it. There is some backstory that might be needed to get a full experience, but lucky for you, the backstory can all be found in the form of free DLC.
Blood and Bacon
Blood and Bacon is a classic example of a game that’s so bad, it’s good. It has horrendous graphics, an outrageous plot that makes no sense and awkward gunplay. However, I’d be lying if I said that slaughtering zombie pigs in this wonky first-person shooter wasn’t an absolute thrill. The best part of Blood and Bacon is that you can tackle the zombpig apocalypse with a buddy in local co-op or online multiplayer.
Super Dungeon Boy
To put it simply, there isn’t too much to Super Dungeon Boy that hasn’t already been done. It’s a platformer that doesn’t necessarily introduce anything new to the genre, but it is one hell of a ride because it has this nostalgic fun factor that can’t be ignored. Running around in a guise that looks to be a legally safe knock-off of Ash Ketchum, Super Dungeon Boy is just an entertaining way to kill some time.
Burn It Down
Another platformer, Burn It Down adds a pinch of a horror element to the traditional platformer genre. While the developer appears to have chosen style above all else, it’s a solid platformer with some psychological aspects thrown into the fray. It isn’t a particularly scary game. However, the vibe would be comparable to “Mario lost the princess in the murderer’s secret lair.” A quick and fun little novelty of a game.
Zak puts you in the shoes of, well, Zak. This epic short action platformer follows the escape of the titular character to find out what is hiding on the other side of the walls that’s held him and his people in captivity. Graced with superhuman abilities, this brief journey will take you through city streets and sewers, using only a rusty pipe to find out what lies on the other side. You can pay a dollar for this, or you can play the browser version for free.
From beginning to end, No Response had me gripped. Throughout my brief playthrough, I really had no idea what to expect from this creepy and charming walking simulator. After a car crash, you are sent out on your way to walk the paved way, all while getting texts; some seem to reflect on your past, while others had me looking over my shoulder. It has a bit of a predictable ending, but it has a story that is so open for interpretation that it can really make you stop and think.
Don’t Bite Me Bro!
Starting as a class assignment at Parsons School of Design, Don’t Bite Me Bro! is deceptive in that it gives you so much to do in such a small voxel world. A base-building, survival couch co-op game, Don’t Bite Me Bro! tasks the player (and friends, if they so choose) with surviving when an unexpected zombie virus ravages the land. Players can explore the map and find randomly generated dungeons that almost have a “roguelike” vibe to them. Occasionally, you have to return to the base to protect it from waves of zombies, but the time that’s given between waves is more than enough to go out, complete tasks and even save some people in the process.
One thing to take away from this is that these games were chosen entirely at random. That being said, I more than likely missed some solid 99 cent games. Let us know in the comments what your favorite dollar games are!
Featured Photo Courtesy of CafeCredit.com via Flickr.
Travis is a graduate of SUNY Fredonia with a BA in journalism. He has had a passion for gaming ever since he played Pokémon Red Version and Donkey Kong 64. Some of his all-time favorite titles include Halo Reach, Spec Ops: The Line and Fallout: New Vegas. In his free time, Travis enjoys making a hot mess of himself and making situations awkward. Finger guns and puns are his specialties.