Dec 262013
 

This is the second part of my article on my favorite games released for Linux in 2013, this is the list of my personal top 10.

10 Knight of pen and paper +1
9 Shank 2
8 FTL – Faster than Light
7 Defender’s Quest – Valley of the Forgotten
6 Trine 2
5 Legend of Grimrock
4 Dungeons of Dredmor
3 Don’t Starve
2 Let 4 dead 2
1 Crusader Kings II

As you can see from this list I like strategy games and RPGs, but in this list there are also other genres, you will find a description of the games from position 10 to 6 in the first part of this article.

You can find all of these games on Steam, and most of them are available at a discounted price on The Humble Store, I suggest to take a look at both websites as in these days they are doing big sales on these titles with discounts from 25 up to 75% of the listed price.



5 Legend of Grimrock

Cost: 11€
Genre: Indie, Adventure, RPG

This is a classic RPG game, you’ll have the control of 4 characters that you can choose between 4 races and 3 classes with these “heroes” you’ll have to walk in a dark dungeon searching to regain your freedom.

The game it’s a slow paced real time RPG, where you have to use your wits and intelligence much more than the muscles of your 4 Heroes, the graphics is really well done and i suggest to play it during night time or without strong lights to have a great game experience.

The Story

On top of Mount Grimrock, an airship carries a group of prisoners escorted by armed knights. The prisoners, sentenced by “the court” for crimes against the King, have been sentenced to be thrown into the pit of Mount Grimrock, at which point their crimes will be absolved. However, no prisoner pardoned in this manner has ever returned.

On being sealed within the mountain, the prisoners make their way downwards through the levels of Grimrock Dungeon, guided by a disembodied voice which comes to them in their sleep promising that a way of escape for both it and the party awaits at the bottom of the dungeon. The party also occasionally finds notes from a previous wanderer of the dungeon named Toorum, who aside from offering clues to certain puzzles and hidden stashes of equipment, talks about his experiences of the dungeon’s periodic tremors and the dungeon’s design seemingly meant to be “traversed from the top down”.

More information on my review of this nice game.

Four skeleton warriors attacking from the grid square directly in front of the player’s party

4 Dungeons of Dredmor

Cost: 4€ base, DLC available
Genre: Casual, Indie, RPG

Now, to be honest this game was released for Linux on 2012, but some of the expansions and all the free community add-on available on Steam give it new life also in 2013, and so I really re-discovered this funny little game.

It’s a classic Rogue-like game, you have to move your hero in 10 level of dungeons where you’ll fight against terrible monsters, to get new equipment, skills and fight the big bad Evil guy, from the official site:

Long ago, the Dark Lord Dredmor was bound in the darkest dungeons beneath the earth by great and mighty heroes. Centuries later, the magical bonds that hold him in place are loosening and his power grows ever stronger. The land cries out for a new hero, a powerful warrior or a mystic wizard like those spoken of in the prophecies of yore.

What they have, unfortunately, is you…

Nothing new on the story side, what make Dungeons of Dredmor so appealing it’s it’s comic style and the humour that the authors have used in the whole game.

Character Creation

Character creation is as simple as choosing a new game, difficulty level: “Elves just want to have fun,” “Dwarvish Moderation,” or “Going Rogue Because Losing is Fun” you can choose also to enable the “permadeath” option, so if you get killed you cannot reload and if having or not smaller maps. And then you just have to choose your seven skills out of a choice of 34.

Gameplay

Dungeons of Dredmor aims to a cleaner, less cumbersome interfaces which may be more intuitive to players not experienced with roguelike games; traditionally, these games are incredibly complex, punishingly difficult, or visually simple (the majority of roguelikes consist entirely of ASCII graphics).

The game features many staples of traditional roguelikes; procedural map generation, turn-based gameplay, permanent death. However, it also employs a streamlined user interface with hand-drawn sprites and backgrounds, a mouse-and-keyboard control scheme, and the option to turn off permanent death.

In order to complete the game, the player must find and defeat Lord Dredmor, the game’s main antagonist. To do so, the player must traverse many levels, progressing only by finding staircases leading further down into the dungeon.

Some more information on my review of this game.

3 Don’t Starve

Cost: 14€
Genre: Adventure, Simulation, Indie

256px-Don't_Starve_cover

A particular game both for its gothic graphich, the mood and the story, you play as Wilson (or other characters later in the game), an intrepid Gentleman Scientist who has been trapped by a demon and transported to a mysterious wilderness world. Wilson must learn to exploit his environment and its inhabitants if he ever hopes to escape and find his way back home.

Enter a strange and unexplored world full of strange creatures, dangers, and surprises. Gather resources to craft items and structures that match your survival style. Play your way as you unravel the mysteries of this strange land.

Gameplay

The game’s goal is to survive for as long as you can, while avoiding starvation, insanity, and hostile enemies. The player can collect and craft a variety of tools and items as well as build various structures to aid in surviving. An “adventure mode” is also included in the game (accessed while playing in sandbox mode by finding a doorway that leads to the adventure challenges), which presents increasingly difficult levels for the player to complete.

When the character dies, an amount of experience is received proportional to the number of days survived, eventually unlocking other characters to use in future games in addition to the standard “Gentleman Scientist”, Wilson. Each has his/her own perks. Some characters are only unlocked in “adventure mode”, unattainable by gaining experience through survival.

The game also features permanent death, encouraging a die and retry approach to learn the way the world works

2 Let 4 dead 2

Cost: 14€
Genre: Action, FPS

The game was released on 2009 for many gaming platforms such as Xbox and Windows, but only on 2013 for Linux, this is a good opportunity to play one of the most famous FPS cooperative survival Zombie games.

This game is a co-operative single or multiplayer action horror FPS that takes you and your friends through the cities, swamps and cemeteries of the Deep South, from Savannah to New Orleans across five expansive campaigns.
You’ll play as one of four survivors armed with a wide and devastating array of weapons. In addition to firearms, you’ll also get a chance to take out some aggression on infected with a variety of carnage-creating melee weapons, from chainsaws to axes and even the deadly frying pan.

The Gameplay
Set during the aftermath of an apocalyptic pandemic, Left 4 Dead 2 focuses on four new Survivors, fighting against hordes of the Infected, who develop severe psychosis and exhibit zombie-like tendencies. The Survivors must fight their way through five campaigns, interspersed with safe houses that act as checkpoints, with the goal of escape at each campaign’s finale.

In the first maps of any campaign, the Survivors attempt to reach a safehouse, while the final stage requires the Survivors to call for rescue and either survive a prolonged onslaught until rescue arrives, pass through an especially challenging gauntlet of Infected to reach a rescue vehicle, or (in Dead Center and The Passing) collect and utilize fuel cans to enable their escape.

And if you like the Zombie genre like me I suggest to check out this free to play game: No More room in Hell

1 – Crusader Kings 2

Cost: 40€ base + DLC
genre: RPG, Simulation, Strategy

Crusader Kings II is a grand strategy game set in the High and Late Middle Ages developed by Paradox Development Studio and published by Paradox Interactive as a sequel to Crusader Kings.

This is the game I played the most during the 2013, so far I’ve played as Italian trying (and failing) in the conquest of the whole Nation, as English Earl and my most successful game it’s as Egypt Caliph, with my empire that includes the whole africa, the Persia, the Greece, Italy, Ireland and some large regions in France and Germany.

Crusader-Kings

Gameplay

The game is a dynasty simulator where the player controls a Medieval dynasty from 1066 to 1453, though the DLC The Old Gods allows for a start date of 867. Through the strategic use of war, marriages and assassinations among many other things, the player works to achieve success for his or her dynasty. The simulation is open-ended so the definition of ‘success’ is completely defined by the player. The only in-game objective is to obtain as many prestige points as possible in order to surpass the various historically relevant Christian dynasties in a fictional prestige ranking (the three most prestigious ones being the Capetian dynasty, the Rurikovich and the von Habsburg). The game ends when the player’s current character dies without an heir of the same dynasty to succeed him/her.

The game employs a genetics and education system where children will inherit many traits, culture, religion and skills from their parents and guardian. This adds an additional layer of strategy to marriages, such that a player will attempt not only to form beneficial alliances, but also to select marriage partners with strong heritable traits to maximise the quality of offspring and thus strengthen the dynasty. This requires balancing sometimes conflicting interests: for instance, a beneficial marriage to a prestigious family may provide a strong alliance but carry the negative consequence that some less prestigious courtiers or commoners who provide no meaningful alliance may otherwise have excellent traits, with the player missing the opportunity to incorporate those into their family

While a player can choose almost any landed noble to play, there are some which are unplayable without the use of mods, notably: Theocracies (most notably The Papacy) and landed Holy Orders/Mercenaries (for example, the Templars or the Catalan Company). Muslims, Pagans and Republics are playable with the Sword of Islam, The Old Gods and The Republic DLC respectively.

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