Steam has been a wonderful platform for PC gamers around the world. From a marketplace that offers a ton of games from indie and big developers, to a community centre where people can converge around their favourite games and interact with other fans and create new content to be shared. And with, comes opportunities for people to try out new games before it is released in its final form.
Some find this to be a privilege as you’ll be able to play the game in early access, with the ability to provide feedback if necessary so that the game can realize its full potential. In essence, a small part of you exists in the game you’ve given feedback on. As a gamer, that’s an honour of the highest level. So let’s see where you might be able to leave your very one mark. Or perhaps you just like playing games that aren’t out yet and be able to experience new things before it becomes the final form.
These early access games need to be purchased first before you’ll be able to play them. So remember to top up with these Steam Wallet codes! And if you’re from a different region, don’t worry, we got you covered here!
Right off the bat, we’ll be talking about the game that generated quite the buzz when it was released in September last year. Phasmophobia is a game where you and your friends work as paranormal investigators that are tasked to figure out what sort of entity is currently residing in the houses that you’ll be visiting for your assignments. You’ll quickly find out that the game’s strongest point is the atmospheric immersion which forces you to focus on the slightest sounds or disturbances. From the muffled sound of rain inside the house to the creaking of the floorboards, you’ll find yourself flinching from time to time. Now, I’m probably losing the horror fans right about now. What’s so scary about 4 underpaid paranormal investigators shuffling around? Well, the entities in the house will try to kill all of you after a certain amount of time has passed. You don’t have any offensive nor defensive capabilities, and there’s no run function. It’s either walk or walk faster. Those are the two-speed options.
You hide in closets and lockers, or you try to run out of the house. And if you manage to piss the entity to the absolute limit, you’ll find the front door locked shut when it’s in hunting mode. In order for you to complete the game, you have to use special tools to figure out what sort of entity you’re dealing with. Is it a demon that communicates through an ouija board? Or perhaps a Shade that hunts players that are left alone? The sudden whispers and flashes of the ghostly entity will definitely trigger even the sturdiest amongst us gamers. Phasmophobia is fun to be played with friends where figuring things out together and being scared together is an interesting experience to be had. Oh, and here’s another thing. The game detects your in-game microphone. Try not to cuss at the ghost you’re looking for.
Maybe you and the gang are bored being stuck at home. Perhaps all the mainstream games lost their lustre for you after years of playing it or games in the same genre. Introducing, Valheim where you and your buddies can create burly Viking characters and dominate a randomly generated world. You start off with nothing as you’re dropped off by a Valkryie into this world that equates to limbo in Viking mythology. You gather resources and build shelter and weapons. You’ll have to hunt for your food and protect yourself from the elements. You’ll have to fight off the occasional monsters that will come at you with full force. Pretty cool if you ask me!
Valheim balances the open-world sandbox gameplay with some combat mechanics. This is to ensure that player can experience a peaceful experience of gathering resources and building great structures if they choose to. And if you’re bored of pandering to your nesting instinct, you can go out there and explore new biomes where you’ll find harder enemies to deal with, as well as unique and exotic materials only available to a particular biome. You’ll encounter wolves, giant trolls and even aggressive poisonous blobs in your journey across various biomes.
You will also find that you could initiate mini-boss fights at certain points of your progression if you choose to do so. Defeating each of these mini-bosses will grant you a special power that ranges from faster stamina regeneration to the ability to chop down trees in a shorter period of time. All in all, Valheim is an interesting open-world sandbox game that incorporates unique physics and Viking themes across the uniquely generated characters and the world that is nicely wrapped with engaging and immersive background music.
Gaming doesn’t have to be adrenaline rushing and nervous battles all the time. It doesn’t have to be a battle royale every time. It could be like Dorfromantik, a peaceful building strategy and puzzle game. Your objective is to build a beautiful village with the option to expand it further across various biomes. You use unique hexagonal tiles which is the superior of all tiles to mandate what to build on top of it. Farms, houses and other unique landscapes.
Dorfromantik is more a tile placer game than a city building game. It’s closer to a puzzle game than a city building. So if you’re expecting a Sim City experience, the game isn’t built like that. The game perfectly captures the summer vibes of the countryside. So, if you’re looking to relax and just vibe with upbeat sunny soundtracks, this game fits the bill. It’s not a loud game and it’s not looking to prove anything. It just is. Doing it’s own thing and giving gamers a piece of respite from the cray reality we live in today.
Imagine if you’re in a shipwreck. Now you’re on a makeshift raft. Now, insert a great white shark that attacks your raft occasionally, chomping off pieces of your raft. Now is not the time to panic my friend. For it is time we defend ourselves from the menace that lurks beneath the ocean! But going against the great white shark unprepared in Raft is definitely going to cost you. That’s basically the gist of the game. You collect garbage floating on the surface of the ocean to construct makeshift items for your survival. From sails to water desalination device, every single piece of trash that you collect will find its use when you’re building your raft.
You’ll occasionally come across islands, where you can collect resources before making sail in your raft. But be careful, you might come across more animals that would like to get to know you, in their bellies. Build quirky gadgets and defend yourself from the menace of the ocean.
“Enough with games that have chill vibes! We want games that pump adrenaline into our veins!” We hear ya. And what we have for you, is a tactical FPS that is an online team-based gameplay that takes place in fictional locations constructed from real-life places in Bangladesh. The locations in the game are constructed with real-life scale in mind. So, prepare to immerse yourself in close living environments.
Unlike the Call of Duty or Battlefield franchise, Zero Hour is not about the flashy gun games or high octane pursuits. It’s about a highly tactical and calculated approach when it comes to its general gameplay. It brings a more grounded and close quarter combat experience that requires a patient mind in order to execute missions perfectly. This game shares the same veins with games such as Arma 3 or Insurgency Sandstorm. Close to real-life combat and not overly flashy.
The game features multiplayer gameplay where a team of 5 battle each other, taking the role of SWAT team or the terrorists. It also features a co-op mode where you need to complete several objectives before you’ll be able to call for extraction. Hostage AIs are built differently whereby instead of just staying at one spot helplessly, they would try to make a run for it when the opportunity presents itself. There’s also a heavy emphasis on resource management where you have limited sets of weapons and devices to work with. Picking up the enemy’s weapon would prove beneficial for you so that you could conserve resources where needed and get carried forward to the next round.
All in all, Zero Hour is an interesting take to the tactical FPS genre where realism is an emphasis throughout the game. the set design is absolutely realistic and the ambient lighting gives a sense of depth to the space around you.
And there you have it, folks! A couple of recommendations for early access games that we feel you might get your money’s worth. Check out the community tab to catch up on future updates or just join the discussions about the game. Play an active role in the community so you too could contribute to making these early access games into a polished final product that you’ll enjoy playing for hours at a time. What early access games are you currently playing? Let us know in the comments if we’ve missed any other gems on Steam!