Friday, October 1, 2021

Monsieur Bezos! With These Free Games You Are Really Spoiling Us!

Pinch, punch, first of the month. Free games from Amazon. Oh, Jeff, have you not blessed us enough already with your wondrous New World? I wonder if he plays? Or even knows the game exists as anything other than a footnote in his gigantic ledger of All The Money?

Speaking of Mr Bezos, I saw several news stories about him and the game today or, rather, the same story several times. A number of news outlets seemed intrigued, even outraged, that Amazon devs had thought to block the uber-boss's name and various versions of it at Character Creation. 

Clearly those people have never played an mmorpg before or they'd know almost all of them have a No Famous Names clause somewhere in the EULA. Amazon have just taken the trouble to enforce it pro-actively. I wish they all would.

Of course, to be any use, that kind of lockout actually has to work. It would have made for a better story if any of the items had included a screenshot of the guy I saw on launch day running around Monarch's Bluff on Zuvendis with the nameplate Jez Befos. Or maybe it was Bef Jezos. Something like that. Close enough I knew what he meant, anyway. This would be a better anecdote if I'd taken a screenshot, too...

The free games that come with Amazon Prime vary in interest for me month by month but last month's's pick was pretty sweet. I claimed several, downloaded three and actually played two of them. 

One was Unmemory, which I posted about a couple of weeks back. The other two were both part of something called the Secret Files. The first has the subtitle Tunguska. You can probably guess what that's about. And you'd be right. The second is called Puritas Cordis, which meant absolutely nothing to me, even though I did Latin at school. I googled it and it means something like "Pure of Heart". 


Still none the wiser but there's a guy in the cover picture who looks like Indiana Jones so I'm guessing that's a clue. In case I'd forgotten what Indy looked like (I hadn't.) there he is, the real one, staring at me from the cover of Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis, which was also in September's selection, along with The Secret of Monkey Island and Sam and Max Hit the Road. Not a bad trio, that.

Nothing to do with Amazon but on a related note, last week I also grabbed a couple of free games from Steam: Syberia 1 and 2. Two more point and click adventures. I think I have enough for the whole winter now, should we get snowed in. Or locked down. Bound to be one or the other.

I love point and click adventures but they do take up a lot of time. I'm still playing Tunguska. It's really long. I was expecting to have finished it and posted about it by now but it's just going on and on and on. 

I'm enjoying it well enough even though both the voice acting and the translation (from the original German) are a little awkward. The plot and the puzzles are engaging enough to make up for it and the graphics are lovely. The elevator pitch must have been "You know that Broken Sword series? We thought we'd do it again only with Germans. Since, you know, we are German and all." Apart from the German thing, that puts it right in my wheelhouse (Ah, wheelhouse! Just the sort of location you get in one of these games!)

There seem to be at least three in the Secret Files series, the two I took last month and a third that arrived in the October bundle. This one doesn't seem to have a subtitle and the description tells me absolutely nothing other than it appears to continue the story from Tunguska. You mean it's three games long?! We'll be here 'til Easter! 

And when am I going to find time to play the four Wallace and Gromit games I just claimed? Oh, right, did I not mention those? Four more point and click adventures, although "graphic" ones this time. I assume that means clicking on pictures rather than Wallace with his kit off. I hope so, anyway. Oh, and Batman: the Enemy Within. I got that last month, too. 

That's a whole lot of free adventures. It would be great if I had nothing better to do but I have New World, now, don't I? A new mmorpg trumps a new point and click adventure any day. 

Well, maybe not any day. I also just snatched a free Steam key from MassivelyOP for Gloria Victis but I don't think I'll be playing that before I finish Tunguska. Or the sequels, most likely. I mean, I've been aware of Gloria Victis for years but I've never felt the need to find out anything about it, much less play it.

That's the power of free,though,  isn't it? I'll take things for nothing even when I don't really have any immediate use for them. I do at least limit myself to things I might have a use for some day. There are  plenty  more free games on Prime and Steam I could have claimed but didn't. I do have some standards. They might be low but they're there.

It's not just whole games, either. It's bits of games. Or bits for games. 

Free with Prime come any number of in-game freebies for all kinds of games I don't play and never will. I say "any number" but I can tell you exactly how many it is this month, if you want.  It's forty-one. That's forty games Amazon doesn't make or, for the most part, sell and one they do. Very public-spirited of them until you remember they also own Twitch so, presumably, any game that people watch makes Amazon money somehow.

Of those forty-one titles, the one Amazon makes is, of course, New World, because that's currently the only game Amazon makes. They used to make two others but they both closed down. If they ever gave anything away for those I missed it, just like I missed the games. 

I did take this month's freebie for Guild Wars 2. GW2 was only recently added to the Prime giveaway stable. I've already missed one of the free things. It was a good one, too. Well, not good but I might have used it, which is more than I can say about most of the things ArenaNet give away in the game itself.

I did get the Booster Pack and Mini Pet freebie and today I got the latest one, a pack of dyes. I logged in to claim that, just to be sure. Dyes are always worth having. 

The freebie I missed was an "Ascended Aurene Clothing Outfit", basically a T-shirt and shorts. I can't say it's amazing but I would have liked to have had it all the same. I like contemporary casual wear in mmorpgs. I think the best clothing options I ever saw were the street fashions in The Secret World.

So much free stuff, eh? Stargrace posted a couple of days back about all the stuff she's been given in Black Desert Online. She said "Like a lot of gamers, I love loot boxes, I love free things" and so do I. When the free things are entire games, though, and I've already got games I just paid to play, I do wonder sometimes just where it's all going.

It's just as well I'm semi-retired. I'd hate to think how I'd have coped if companies had been throwing stuff at me like this back when I worked full-time.


  1. Ha, I certainly saw a few iterations of Mr Jeff's name running around in the first couple of days.

    Anyway, that aside, there are Wallace & Gromit games?! Smashing!

    1. They're all done by Telltale, who are supposed to be good, although I've never played anything of theirs yet.

  2. How did I not know I had a bunch of free games with my Amazon prime subscription? I claimed a game I have been flipping to play last night, thanks for the heads up on something I really should have already known about . . .

    1. It used to be the free games you got with Twitch and when Amazon bought Twitch they (eventually) moved the whole thing over to Prime. They give some very nice stuff away.


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