OF 2022: The Steam & PC Stuff

‘Of 20XX’ is my attempt to look back and catalog the previous year of gaming in my life. I haven’t done the “Best Of” category stuff in a long time so what you’ll find over this week is a recounting of what I played in 2022 with a mini review or personal anecdote for each, continuing today with Steam and PC.

Lookit me, playing games on a computer in 2022! Ok I admit, it was only a couple of games. Even including non-Steam games — and excluding the PC Game Pass titles we covered earlier this week — it barely counts as a handful. Now that I work from home, sitting at the same desk where my personal PC is, I rarely want to spend more time in the day in the same spot. Still, I spent some decent time at the helm of a keyboard and mouse this year and here’s how it shook out.

Satisfactory – 30 Hours (but it’s already up to 60+ hours by the time I posted this)

After some stutters in the physics-heavy Shipbreaker I wasn’t sure that my PC would be happy about Satisfactory. I have adored, but had not yet played any factory building games, and with Satisfactory being fully 3D I was a little worried. But it turned out to run like a dream and by the end of December I will have sunk over 40 hours into it after buying it just a few weeks prior. It is captivating!

Between plotting conveyor belt pathways and exploring a large sci-fi world with some surprisingly smooth controls, the game has appealed to both sides of my brain. When managing power cycles and rigging up input/output flows gets boring I head out into the wilds with newly unlocked gear to find the next resource necessary to proceed. It’s a great loop, almost devious in its ability to keep me playing long after I know I should stop. I don’t do Early Access often but there’s enough here now to keep me busy while updates continue to come in.

One Way Heroics and Mystery Chronicle: One Way Heroics – 7 Hours

I first got into One Way Heroics when Limited Run Games put out a PlayStation 4 version on disc back in 2016. What I’d forgotten since then is that the Mystery Chronicle version is an expanded and retooled spin on the PC original. When I went to stream the game earlier in the year I couldn’t figure out why the version I had on Steam was so different and wound up buying Mystery Chronicle there as well. I made some good runs on Steam and enjoyed revisiting the game for a few days.

The streamlined RPG experience is still satisfying and the forced scrolling (LEFT = DEATH!) still gives me the Tetris effect. After playing for a few hours I start to see everything as a series of movements that are always sliding to the left. At one point I felt like I need to keep stepping to the right as I was brushing my teeth.

NEO Scavenger – 3 Hours

While I was on an old games kick on Steam I decided to revisit NEO Scavenger and Prison Architect for a day. Prison Architect wasn’t as fun as it used to be but NEO Scavenger continues to entertain despite how terrible I am at it. I think my most successful run is about 3 days before I got too cocky and tried to fight a radioactive wolfman.

Max Payne 2 – 8 Hours

I am always ready to play Max Payne 2, but it’s been a while. After Dan Ryckert completed the original and was about to begin on the sequel back in February, I decided I had to see it through myself before he trounced all over my memories. I’m happy to say it’s still a classic romp and plays great. What a surprise, bullet time is still fun, right? The deadly melodramatic poetry that serves for narration doesn’t hold up so well outside of my 20’s but the noir is still strong! Well worth a playthrough any day of the week and it breaks from the original enough that you don’t really need to play it first.

ArcheAge – Probably another 40-50 hours

Way back in February our love for ArcheAge finally waned. We got back into it in 2021 as it moved from one publisher to another and some parting gifts were doled out. I think it boosted our levels and so we were riding high on new content and skills for a while. But early in 2022 we’d hit the grind again and decided to pull up our houses and structures and put our inventories into storage. Maybe we’ll hop back in again (hopefully after another few years) when they inevitably announce that the game will finally be shut down. Sorry, that’s just where my mind goes these days.

Submerged: Hidden Depths – 5 Hours

Hidden Depths was one of the freebies on the Epic Games Store back in September. I had yet to pick it up so I swooped in and clicked that ‘GET’ button. It was nice to revisit the lonely drowned world of Submerged and see it in higher fidelity, but seven years after the original it was disappointing to see much of the same gameplay. It’s classic Me: I enjoyed the original and it turns out that was all I needed. I was happily exploring by boat and on-foot one day and just never picked it back up again.

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