As Britain continues to bask in an uncharacteristically temperate summer, Steam has managed to remind gamers why they should remain firmly transfixed by their screen with the coming-and-going of the highly anticipated Summer Sale. The online games retailer and distribution software developed by Valve uses its fantastic rapport with both the hordes of developers and its loyal and often rabid fanbase to slash prices on almost its entire catalogue.
Ranging from recent triple-A releases to old school classics and indie hits from its 'greenlight' section, it slaps discounts from 30 to 90 per cent and uses a combination of flash sales and pack deals to ensure that there’s always something for everyone; or, as this case for me and most people, a lot for everyone.
Yet again, I find myself helplessly throwing money at the screen as the combination of ease of purchasing and the belief that just-one-more won't hurt me leaves my wallet lighter than before. Now the sale has ended, I can sift through my new mini-catalogue of games and see just what I've spent all my money on.
As with every sale there are few titles that I've wanted for a while but had always been out of my financial reach. 1940's detective roamer L.A.Noire became the first that I've installed, managing to grab the highly rated motion-capture darling for under £4. Bargain.
The currently still-in-alpha Prison Simulator was another title that I've had my eye on for a while and I managed to grab it whilst it was on a four hour flash sale for 75 per cent off. As with Minecraft this price will include all future updates, meaning I get to watch it blossom from a glitchy half-game to a polished, finished product.
And as a large portion of my childhood was spent popping over inflated heads and curing elvis impersonators in Bullfrog classic Theme Hospital, Prison Sim was just the first of a list of simulator games I purchased including Rollercoaster Tycoon 3, Simcity 4 and Euro Truck Simulator 2. The latter i'm still not entirely convinced I wanted but hey, I might make a great European truck driver and it was only £2....Will it deliver the goods? Time will tell.
Taking advantage of their fantastic collection of classic and indie games I also got hold of narrative driven Bastion, the Bioshock predecessor System Shock 2, the ever changing 'shooter' The Binding of Isaac, and the blindingly frustrating yet heavily addictive Super Meat Boy and McPixel - the latter of which which I'm not too sure about but it had decent reviews and it was 50p so why not. In fact, I managed to bag most of these games for under £1, which is a deal that could only really be beaten if I'd been a scrooge on the pay-what-you-want for charity Humble Bundle.
Add to that the triple-A titles I also bought including Tomb Raider, Fallout: New Vegas, Baldur's Gate, Deus-Ex, and Fable III, I'm left with a long list of quality games to sink my teeth into. Though I don't have too much time, I mean, the winter sale is only 6 months away!