Those who have been watching the Indie Game Bundle sales are probably pretty familiar with the Indie Gala bundles. Well, Indie Gala is back with the Indie Gala X bundle, which includes nine games and the promise of more to unlock before it is done. The Indie Galas can tend to be hit and miss when it comes to quality games. On which side of the coin does Indie Gala X fall? That is the question I will attempt to answer with this edition of Bundled.
Just as a refresher, the rankings for Bundled are:
- PAY: Buy this bundle. There is enough offered in it to make it worth the purchase.
- PASS: Do not buy this bundle. Just not worth it.
- PAUSE: Consider if you are really going to play the games. If not, wait to see if they add enough to the bundle later to make it worthwhile.
Who Is Indie Gala?
Indie Gala is a group which puts together bundles of mostly Indie games for charity. The bundles are the name your own price style, but you must beat the average to receive any bonus games and sometimes albums which unlock as the bundle progresses. While the temptation is there to wait till all the games have unlocked before making a decision, Indie Gala does reward early adopters in two different ways:
- More Gala Points Earned: Every Indie Gala purchase earns you Gala Points. These points can be used in the recently opened Gala Store to reduce the cost of several indie games. Early adopters get bonus Gala Points, as do those who beat the average.
- Better “Happy Hour” Bonuses: Indie Gala will run what they call “Happy Hour” from time to time on the website. During this time, you get double the gifts for any gift purchased. Early adopters can get up to four gifts for every one purchased during this time.
One other really nice feature of the Indie Gala bundles is the games are separated individually. You get individual Steam code or download links for each one, allowing you to buy a bundle with games you already have in it and give those games to your friends. This is its one major advantage over the Humble Bundles, which give out steam codes for the bundle itself.
Indie Gala does tend to have one disadvantage when compared to Indie Royale or Humble Bundles: the games themselves. While many of the games which have been offered through the Indie Galas are great, they are generally not as well known as the games in many of the others.
Indie Gala X
Indie Gala X is the latest offering from the Indie Gala. A strategy heavy bundle, there are nine games offered in the main part, with other games unlocking if you beat the average. The games are Omegalodon, Praetorians, Majesty 2, East India Company, Rome Gold, Knights of Honor, Elven Legacy, Heart of Iron II Complete and, to break things up just a bit, Lead and Gold. For many of you, those names may not mean a lot, so let’s tak a look at some of the highlights:
- Elven Legacy: A turn based, hex board strategy game by Paradox Interactive and 1C. While it is good, it can be a rough game to try and play, especially if you are not familiar with the genre. Chris did a preview of it on the site a while back, which you can read here.
- Majesty 2: An RTS with a twist. You do not directly control your units in the game; you instead place bounties on areas where you want them to go or not go by putting outrageously high ones there. Chris also covered that game here.
- Hearts of Iron II Complete: A grand strategy game based around World War II. In other words, a very in-depth war strategy game.
- Lead and Gold: The exception to the strategy rule for this bundle. This is a Wild West shooter reminiscent of Team Fortress 2. While the gameplay is good, this game was absolutely crippled by lag when I last tried to play it. Patches have been released since then which were ment to address this issue, but I have not played it since as my initial experience was so poor. An online shooter with serious lag is a major problem.
The Verdict: Pause
There are two things to consider before you decide whether or not this bundle is for you:
- Are you a hardcore strategy player? When I say hardcore, I mean HARDCORE. The mechanics and depth of strategy in many of these games will bring even many RTS veterans to their knees. They have a steep barrier of entry and are not for everyone. Sure, Lead and Gold has been included to break this up a bit, but the lag issue is one to consider if that is the game which is pushing you over the top.
- What games are going to unlock? So far, The King’s Crusade has unlocked. There are at least two others which will unlock based on what is shown on the site, and there could be more. Remember, however, you do not get the unlockable games if you do not beat the average, which appears to be about $6 currently (not labeled clearly).
If these games really appeal to you, this is a great deal. If you are hesitant, I would wait to see what else unlocks. I am doing that myself. As of right now, there are still over 8 days remaining to purchase this bundle.