On an average day about a dozen new games are released on Steam. And while we think that’s a good thing, it can be understandably hard to keep up with. Potentially exciting gems are sure to be lost in the deluge of new things to play unless you sort through every single game that is released on Steam. So that’s exactly what we’ve done. If nothing catches your fancy this week, we’ve gathered the best PC games you can play right now and a running list of the 2022 games that are launching this year.
Release: May 18
Developer: Bit Rot
Launch price: $13.49 | £11.69 | AU$19.35
Recursive Ruin is a first-person puzzle game set in “an infinitely recursive landscape,” a concept that will draw immediate comparison with Manifold Garden. But whereas Manifold Garden explored labyrinthine Escher-like structures, Recursive Ruin takes its visual cues from the world of fractals, and not only will you need to navigate these endlessly expanding patterns, but you’ll also enjoy a far-from-realistic relationship with gravity. The setting is cool, but also expect to meet some truly bizarre characters, including but not limited to your cat companion Behemoth. It’s a surreal, narrative driven affair that appears to bring something genuinely unique to the first-person puzzle formula.
Release: May 21
Launch price: $9 | £6.47 | AU$13.05
The Dread X horror compilations barely need introduction nowadays, but for the uninitiated: these are collections of indie mini-horror games, usually wrapped in a theme, and this new collection’s theme is entertainment. That means you should expect alien-themed parties, ritualistic celebrations, bloody karaoke booths, a terrifying sports center, and loads more. As always, this fifth instalment offers a variety of genres, ranging psychological first-person through to more blood-spattered third-person affairs. Naturally, quite a few look like they were originally made for the PS1.
Release: May 20
Developer: Marvelous Inc.
Launch price: $22.49 | £18 | AU$31.45
Deadcraft is a game about murdering droves of zombies, but in an interesting twist, the player-character is a “half-zombie” too. This means you’ll be building up your own army of undead to pit against another army of undead, resulting in double the zombie carnage (I guess?). You’ll build your zombie army by planting the corpses of aggressive zombies in the ground and “growing” them, all the while collecting new weapons and tools to equip them with. Overall, Deadcraft is what happens when a game developer asks: What if we make a zombie game, but with even more zombies? And heck, you’re a zombie too? It’s a zombie festival.
Virtual Circuit Board
Release: May 21
Developer: Reverie Foundry
Launch price: $13.49 | £10.25 | AU$19.35
Launched into Early Access last week, Virtual Circuit Board is a sandbox “logic simulator” that basically gives you the tools to make logic circuits of any complexity you like. Do be warned though: Virtual Circuit Board isn’t presented as a game per se, as there are no pre-set problems to solve. By contrast, you’ll need to set your own goals, and studio Reverie Foundry recommends having “some basic knowledge” about logic gates and also a little bit of programming knowledge. It’s a niche affair then, but it might be just what the doctor ordered if you’ve spent many hours playing around with Minecraft redstone blocks.
Release: May 19
Developer: Cosmonaut Studios
Launch price: $27 | £22.49 | AU$40.45
Here’s another first-person puzzle game, though Eternal Threads has you manipulating and making sense of time, rather than non-Euclidian fractal worlds. Set in contemporary England, it’s your job to examine the decisions and events that led to a fatal housefire, and to manipulate that past in order to avert disaster. The whole seven days before the fire are available to explore straight away, and you’ll need to be constantly shifting forward and backwards through this period in order to understand what happened, and ultimately, to stop it.