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.
Alaloth: Champions of The Four Kingdoms
Release: July 1
Developer: Gamera Interactive
Launch price: $20 | £17.59 | AU$30.39
This old school ARPG was featured at the PC Gaming Show back in 2020, and now it’s finally hit Early Access. As Tyler noted back then, this retro-styled isometric affair has a lovely art style that recalls the lush pre-rendered backgrounds of days of yore, and the whole thing comes across as a love letter to the Baldur’s Gate games. Set across four territories, you’ll play as a human, elf, dwarf or orc as you explore this Middle Ages-inspired world, accompanied by a dozen different companions, with all the crafting, questing and reputation building you’d expect. This Early Access build will gain new quests, voice overs and more as Alaloth: Champions of The Four Kingdoms works towards a 1.0 release, which is expected in “approximately 12 months”.
Fobia – St. Dinfna Hotel
Release: June 29
Developer: Pulsatrix Studios
Launch price: $27 | £21.41 | AU$38.65
Fobia is a timeline-hopping survival horror game set in a grandiose, decrepit hotel. As an ambitious journalist, you’ll visit this spooky site with a view to figuring out whether the scary rumors surrounding this ruin are true or not. They probably are, this being a survival horror game, but given your role as a journalist you should expect quite a bit of puzzle solving and deduction, alongside the usual pissbolting and unsteady combat. Puzzle solving ties into the time-travel aspect: using an “enigmatic camera” you’ll be able to access “parallel realities” that reveal a lot more about the old hotel than meets the naked eye. If you love haunted house style horror, this looks really well done.
Release: June 30
Developer: Maciej Targoni
Launch price: $1.79 | £1.52 | AU$2.65
Hook 2 is a simple puzzle game about—you probably guessed it—unhooking hooks. If you happened to play the original, know that this sequel adds a third-dimension, meaning you’ll need to rotate the hook puzzles, which no doubt complicates things a little (though not too much—these games aren’t designed to be super taxing). It’s a gorgeous looking affair, resembling a piece of minimalist art you can tinker with.
Mercenaries Rebirth: Call of the Wild Lynx
Release: June 30
Developer: ESQUARDRA, inc., RideonJapan
Launch price: $18 | £16.19 | AU$26.05
Yes, Disgaea 6 released for PC last week, but if you’re after an old school tactics RPG that doesn’t mess with the tried and true formula, Mercenaries Rebirth might be more to your taste. An unapologetically orthodox affair, this instalment mixes 3D rotatable grid environments with pixel art sprites, and as you’d expect, it’s all about smart positioning, careful use of powers and potions, and the gradual bolstering and specialization of each party member. In addition to the story campaign there are “free battles”, which are basically replayable fights that will come in handy if you want to do a lot of grinding (and you probably will). For fans of FF Tactics, Disgaea 5, and other strategic and whimsical Japanese fare.
Release: July 2
Developer: Kane Carter
Launch price: $4 | £3.19 | AU$6
This Five Nights At Freddy’s spinoff actually released for Gamejolt back in 2020, and is an improved version of a game that first released in 2016. But here it is now as a premium edition on Steam, and if you’re heavily invested in the FNAF universe you’ve probably already played it. For everyone else, well… do understand that POPGOES Arcade is meant to resemble an in-universe arcade game belonging to the Popgoes Pizzeria franchise (a rival to the main Freddy Fazbear’s Pizza). Whether it’s fun divorced from that context I’m not entirely sure, but it does present as an interesting and charming retro RPG surrounded by some hectic world building. Based on the ‘mature content description’ on Steam, you should probably expect some horror elements to creep in.