A truly ‘Humble’ opportunity


Welcome back to a time when games are plentiful. The summers always seem so empty for some reason, but the crew working at humblebundle.com provided a little excitement when the site released its third set of games.

The Humble Indie Bundle is a collection of independently developed and produced games that are brought together into one game pack benefitting charity. Players choose what they wish to donate and get access to all the games for the current edition of the bundle. A player can choose to pay nothing, or up to $4,000. I thought I’d cover a few of the games available in the bundle and tell you how to sign up for the bundle’s mailing list so you are informed of the next bundle’s release.

The first game I took a look at was “Crayon Physics Deluxe.” The object of the game is to maneuver a small ball into the goal area using different objects created within the game. The puzzles can be as elaborate or simple as you want and there are hundreds of ways each level can be accomplished. Every play will be different so every object the player draws will be different, giving this game a fun replay value. Since this bundle has been closed, as it is a limited event, this title can be purchased from their website, crayonphysics.com, for $20.

The next game was by far my favorite. Maybe it was the old school 8-bit music style, or maybe it was the totally unforgiving and difficult puzzles that restarted every time the character died. “VVVVVV”, with 6 V’s, is a platformer with a twist: your character can’t jump, but he can reverse gravity. So if there is a gap in the floor across a room, the player would reverse gravity and walk on the ceiling to avoid death. Using this one simple game mechanic, the designers built a masterpiece. The game is separated into levels, but you must first find them by exploring the game grid. Each level may be split into different areas — think old “Zelda” games from the NES era — which allows the puzzle to be even more evil as you fly through the air avoiding spikes. For me, though, the soundtrack is what really hits the nostalgic cord. The 8-bit melodies take me back to a much simpler time and at only $5, this game is a must have. The website and purchasing information can be found at thelettervsixtim.es.

The last game I’m going to cover from this bundle’s original six games is “Cogs.” This is a puzzle game that employs the use of slide puzzles, but in 3D, so puzzle pieces have both a front and back side, forcing you to solve two patterns at the same time. There are also cubes, timed puzzles and puzzles with chimes that must play a certain tune. I’m not a huge fan of puzzles, but this game offers a very fun experience. “Cogs” can be purchased for a small fee of $10 from Steam or their website cogsgame.com.

The Humble Indie Bundle is an excellent opportunity to delve into a world that corporations haven’t yet gotten their bland, gunmetal colored hands on, and at a price that you can name, what is to stop you from getting all the games offered for free.

The most recent bundle offered bonuses to anyone who paid over the average of $5.83 by including all the games from the previous Humble Bundle, which included critically acclaimed “Braid.” This time around, the Humble Bundle managed a staggering haul of $2.1 million, with 372 thousand donors. Each buyer decides how their payment is applied, either to the developers, to the two charities this program contributes to, or a mixture of both. I’m eagerly awaiting the e-mail that announces the next Humble Indie Bundle.