If you're looking for a new game to play this weekend, now is the time to try This War of Mine on Steam. It's free to play this weekend, until April 8! The game's developer, 11 Bit Studios, is gearing up to release a new game, Frostpunk. Frostpunk is already receiving rave reviews and is sure to be a hit from for the studio.
From the developer:
"In an ultimately frozen world, people develop steam-powered technology to oppose the overwhelming cold. The city ruler has to manage both the inhabitants and the infrastracture the citizens live in. Leader’s tactical skills face challenges, frequently questioning morality and the basic foundation of what we consider an organized society. Here optimization and resource management often clash with empathy and thoughtful decision-making. While city and society management consume most of the ruler’s time, at some point exploration of outside world is necessary to understand its history and present state."
While Frostpunk looks really cool, like a dark, violent, deadly, steampunk Stardew Valley, it's not free, and it hasn't been released yet. But, the opportunity to play This World of Mine for free is generating even more buzz for both games.
While Frostpunk is set in a completely fictional universe, allowing the player to be somewhat removed from the dark content, This War of Mine, though still fictional, exists in a world that could, and does in some places on the planet, exist today. One reviewer from the Steam community, an Iraq war vet, played and reviewed the game. His take:
"This "game" puts you square in the middle of the experiences of those civilians. It is a brutal, kill or be killed world - where an act of unimaginable violence may let you live another day, but it can also break your heart and soul. Some days, you are offered a chance at compassion - and if you take that chance, risking your own safety and resources for others, you may find you feel a bit better about yourself."
Without question, this is a powerful game that leaves a lasting impression on its players. The reviewer continues:
"Then there are the times where you are stuck between a rock and a hard place. You are unarmed, scavenging for anything to save your friends, and you peep through a keyhole and see a soldier brutally beating - and possible worse - a woman. He has an AK-47, you have a lockpick and a rumbling stomach. So you sit there and watch - afraid that any noise may turn his violent attention upon you. When it is all done, you hide until he leaves and then, shamefully, pick over the bloodied body of the woman for anything she may have scavenged before the soldier got to her."
Basically, with unique visuals and a dark, heartbreaking story, This War of Mine tells a story that perhaps none of us want to see or experience, but perhaps should.
If you enjoy unique survival simulators and questioning your own humanity, you should give this game a try. While a pen and ink sidescroller isn't for everyone, for the sake of the game, it's worth not allowing yourself to give up on the story based solely on the animation style. At the very least, the game is free to play until the end of the day on April 8.
After the free period ends, the game can be purchased at the heavily discounted sale price of $5.99 (regular $19.99) for another day. If you're still enjoying the game, there are a couple of DLC packs, including The Little Ones, which allows you to play the game through the eyes of a child and The Father's Promise, the first in a series of independent episodic stories with more to be released this year. The prices for the DLCs are all $4.99 and under, an absolute steal in the DLC market. Even with the upcoming release of a new game, developers are continuing to bring new and engaging content to a heartbreaking but intriguing game.