(Santa Vs. The Devil not included because it doesn’t exist…yet.)
Christmas is almost here, and guess what? I got you all presents! You all deserve them, especially after what you all did during the Kingdom Hearts marathon! That kind of charity is the true spirit of Christmas/Hanukkah/Kwanzaa/Holiday! Do you like platformers? Before you answer…of course you do! Do you like free games? Of course you do! Except when they suck. Yes, there are some free games that make you wish you could have the time it took to click the link, download the game and play the game back. That’s not the kind of game listed here. These games are completely free and also worth all that time, and what’s better, they are actually worth money! And you don’t have to pay a thing! You’re welcome. Read on and click the game names to get your presents!
There’s no question if this one is worth money, because there’s an HD copy on Steam right now. Not saying that this version is bad though. In fact, this version is excellent and shows off how disturbingly cute this game can be. It began life as an entry in a contest to create a game in the spirit of Lovecraft without actually just copying one of his stories. The result was an adorable platformer with no crazy creepy twist at all! Give it a try and don’t worry about the game turning into a crazy hellscape at all. Also, collect all the gems to see my favorite video game ending ever!
I’m doubling up on this one because these are basically the same game. This is like zen in video game form. If you’re ever super-frustrated from a Call of Duty match or ultra-frustrated at a level in Super Meat Boy, turn this on and chill out to the minimalist beauty and calming soundtrack as you guide a monkey or little girl to either escape or save the world. Along the way you find items that help you explore, much like a very laid-back Metroid. Plus, in Stories you have extra mission packs and a robust level editor available! It’s the gift that keeps on giving, assuming you make levels for it forever.
Yeah, that sarcastic cynic/critic Yahtzee can put games down. But can he make a good one? Turns out he can! This is a great stealth-based platformer designed around getting treasures and boosting your reputation to unlock new thief powers. The tight controls, fun story and classic visuals all come together in a tight and concise package that doesn’t mess around with…well, all the BS that Yahtzee usually whines about. Funny how that happens!
As you can tell by now, I am crazy for platformers. The only thing I hate about them is that they end. If only someone would make a procedurally generated randomized platformer! Also if it could be like Indiana Jones, that would be awesome too. I bet that kind of game would encourage exploring and dying and trying again, but allow you to use gold to open paths to later areas so you could still beat it. Too bad this game doesn’t exist, because that game would also be awesome to put out for download on the Xbox later on. Oh well, some day.
Now these games are all great, but this one is the one that inspired me to make this list. This is basically Metroid Deus Ex where the world gets destroyed by aliens before your eyes IN THE INTRO CUTSCENE. The story after that is amazingly good too, detailing the fight between the aliens that decimated the world and an even worse threat. That story’s not set, either, as you can make choices that affect what ending you get, and not “save a puppy or kill an orphanage” choices either. Whether you decide to destroy as many aliens as possible by becoming a whirling dervish of energy beam death or give the crazy aliens a break, maaan, this game is the best. The awesome old-school Flashback-style graphics don’t hurt, either!
Well, those are my gifts to you. If I didn’t get the one you wanted, feel free to post your own free games in the comments! Have a Merry Christmas, Happy Holiday, and Great Game-times!