The Latest Humble Bundle Is A Cracker For RPG Fans

If you like getting a lot of good games for bugger all (and RPGs are your thing), you'll be very happy with the latest Humble Bundle.

Billed as the "Classics Return" bundle, the package is basically two tiers of banging turn-based RPGs with a bit of point-and-click adventure and strategy for good measure. Even the top tier is reasonable value if you're a fan of April Ryan and Baldur's Gate, with Dreamfall Chapters and Torment: Tides of Numenera rounding out the offering.

Here's what's on offer.

Tier 1: Pay what you want

  • Shadowrun Dragonfall: Director's Cut
  • Tesla Effect: A Tex Murphy Adventure
  • Shadowrun Returns
  • Broken Sword 5 - The Serpent's Curse

Good value if you like campy FMV games or just really like your cyberpunk turn-based RPGs. Broken Sword 5 is the outlier here: it's fine if you grew up with Nico and George, but even then I still found all the animations just a little too weird and the UI isn't great. Buy for Shadowrun, stay for dodgy FMV.

Tier 2: Pay above the average

  • Xenonauts
  • Shadowrun: Hong Kong - Extended Edition
  • Age of Wonders 3
  • Wasteland 2: Director's Cut

The average is $US7.67 at the time of writing. And that's a pretty good price for what's one of the highest value tiers Humble has ever offered. Xenonauts is an absolute cracker for anyone who remembers the original X-COM: UFO Defence.

Age of Wonders 3 was a decent return for the Tolkien-inspired franchise, although HOMM3 will always have the strongest place in my heart. Shadowrun Hong Kong is definitely worth playing for anyone who enjoyed Shadowrun Dragonfall or Returns, and Wasteland 2 is basically the closest you can get to a modern retelling of the original Fallout games.

Tier 3: Pay $US15+

Image: Supplied
  • Torment: Tides of Numenera
  • Dreamfall Chapters

The top tiers are always the hardest sell, since you already have so many games by this point. But it's a good discount on Torment if you haven't picked it up already, although games like Divinity: Original Sin 2 are a little more widely palatable.

Dreamfall Chapters is the anchor of the tier here: it's worth playing if you want some closure with April Ryan's story, but it's a very traditional, slowly paced point-and-click adventure that might be difficult to play in 2018. The cyberpunk setting in Zoe's chapters also fit the theme of the rest of the bundle pretty well, which is nice.

So, lot of good games. Xenonauts and the Shadowrun trilogy is a good way to spend a few weekends, and Tesla Effect can actually be a lot of fun with a group of friends and some homemade drinks.

For those who have played through the Shadowrun games: which was your favourite? And if you have strong opinions about Tesla Effect, don't hit me up. I gave it a bad review and someone kindly wished my dog was dead. Fans can be strange at times.


    Torment: Tides of Numenera is basically all I am interested in. But $15 is a decent price on that but do I really need another crpg that I'm not going to play

      "YES," said the evil shoulder demon. "YOU DO."

        Did you notice that the sunrider games are in the other boobie bundle?

          I did not even know that such a bundle existed. I am intrigued. Sunrider was enjoyable.

    I ended up being so disinterested by the time Numenera came out that I gave away my Kickstarter key.

    Shadowrun's initial campaign is okay, good bite-sized length and not too bogged down in the parts of Shadowrun that make you wonder why you're not just playing D&D. Could not get into Dragonfall at all.

    Still, for $15 US it's an okay bundle I guess.

      Numenera did take a ridiculously long time to come out, but is totally worth playing--as long as you like words. I don't think I've ever inhabited a world like the Ninth World.

        I got very badly disappointed by Pillars of Eternity and in the intervening period I also discovered I really strongly dislike Numenera as a system & what passes as a setting, dislike the developer, and just gave up on the game by the time it finally came out.

          Hrm. If you disliked PoE, you'll probably also dislike TToN.

          But I almost wrote an article when TToN came out about what I really liked about Numenera as a system. For instance, I really love the 5 Tides alignment system over the traditional 3x3 D&D alignment system. Really really elegant.

          Having said that, I think the Ninth World is really cool as a video game setting to enter, but sucks as a tabletop RPG setting, because there's not enough constraint. If you have a world where you can have magic and fantasy, and you can have absolutely everything, it's hard to be specifically anything.

          Cyphers, meh. Monte Cook? Meh.

            I feel very similarly to you re: Numenera tabletop - not enough details, not enough constraint, not enough is concrete. It's all very "whatever the DM wants". I prefer a bit more than that.

            I didn't like PoE because I couldn't get into it at all, primarily because there wasn't a solid plot hook early on, and more importantly the asinine, poorly thought out fatigue system which put me into a catch-22 situation where I couldn't fight anything because I was fatigued, but couldn't get the money to buy a tent or inn room to recover the fatigue, and couldn't sleep outdoors without being roused by the guards or attacked by monsters (which would beat me because of fatigue). Maybe it was an amazing game if you got a bit further in, but first impressions really ruined it for me.

            It possibly didn't help that by the time I got to it (it came out while I was on vacation) The Witcher 3 was out. I think also it turned out that I didn't want a game that played like Baldur's Gate II, I actually wanted a game that made me feel the way I did when I played Baldur's Gate II the first time.

      The first shadowrun game perfectly captured what it was like to play one of the old tabletop modules for it :)

      Dragonfall is to this day one of my favourite RPG'd ever with characters I actually grew to care about

        Everyone seems to love Dragonfall, but it just left me completely cold since it leans hard into the fantasy elements of Shadowrun, which honestly is the part of Shadowrun I always really disliked (why go to the trouble of crafting such a great cyberpunk setting and system and then shove elves in?). But I was always more of a Cyberpunk 2020 person.

        I really liked the original Shadowrun campaign though. As you say, it felt exactly like playing a tabletop module. Possibly also helped that it was set around Seattle and I had literally just moved there when I played it.

          Just because Elves have a sexual preference towards squirrels doesn't mean they should be excluded from Shadowrun :D

    Kotaku, can you please caption your images with the names of the games? It would be super helpful :)

      Shadowrun Returns
      Age of Wonders 3
      and I am assuming Torment: Tides of Numenera

    Any of these happen to have co-op?

    Need to see that tesla effect review

      Here you go. Be kind!

        It's fair. I'm an old school fan so it did scratch that itch for me but I can see that it definitely felt like a game that was past it's prime. I feel that they had to do that to appeal to fans - it was after all, funded by them by kickstarter. They're working on a new one - The Poisoned Pawn, which hopefully will take some of the grievances you and other gamers have shared and moved with the times.

    And I have apparently owned Tesla effect since 2014 .. Steam backlog for the win !

      This happens to me a lot.

      "Oooh, this game's on special? I've been meaning to keep an eye out for that one! I've heard good things abou-- oh, I already own it. MAYBE I SHOULD PLAY IT."
      *loads up Civilization again*

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