A good time to be a PC gamer! Its the Steam Next Fest, which runs from the 3rd of October until the 10th of October. There are hundreds of demos available to download and try out. Also, there are live streams of developers who are playing their games for you to watch.
Over the last few days, I’ve downloaded and played a selection of demos. Including Manor Lords which I have already written about. As is usual with a demo, you get a short taster of what the game will be like. So let’s see what they are all about.
Aka by developer Cosmo Gatto is a sweet adventure game. Finally, war is over, and an old friend is inviting you to his island to live a peaceful life.
Bring back fauna and flora to this paradise that shows past scars. You play the part of a red panda or maybe it’s a raccoon, and are asked to grow a garden and complete some narrative quests for the local animal NPC’S.
Explore handcrafted islands such as Pine tree island. Craft shelter, tools, clothes, or various props. Which can help solve quests or be used for decorative purposes. You will need to gather materials, find objects or win them while doing quests. Aka has a release date of 2022.
Stories of Blossom is a wholesome narrative game with gorgeous storybook visuals. When browsing the demos, I was drawn to this game because it is being billed as Disability Friendly on its Steam page.
It has been designed and tested to help minimize barriers for those with disabilities, with Audio, Input, Subtitles, Visuals and Assistance settings to tailor to your needs. For example, you can set the game so a voice informs you of what button to press each time, which would be great for the visually impaired.
You play as Clara, a young girl still learning the ways of the world. When Clara is faced with a problem in life, she turns to her Grandfather for help and advice as he gives her lots of encouragement.
In each story, you are faced with various challenges to help Clara learn the lessons her Grandfather is trying to teach her. In addition, you’ll befriend cute creatures in odd situations and help solve their problems along the way. Stories of Blossom has a release date of Spring 2023.
Against the Storm is a rogue-lite city builder set in a vibrant fantasy world tormented by everlasting rain. The everlasting rain sounds much like my home town where it forgets to stop raining.
The game is being developed by Eremite Games and published by Hooded Horse. Against the Storm is a meaty demo with around two hours of gameplay.
You play as the Scorched Queen’s Viceroy. You are sent into the wilds to establish and manage new settlements inhabited by humans, beavers, lizards, and harpies.
Building, maps and resources are all randomized, thanks to the rogue-lite element. Every city you build will be different; every set of challenges the Queen sets will be unique. The weather isn’t too friendly either so you will have to compete with it. In addition, you have to contend with a Queen who grows ever more impatient as you try to gather precious materials and extend the frontiers of your civilization. Against the Storm has a release date of October 2022.
Lonesome Village is a cosy but quiet town struggling to rebuild after a strange calamity wiped out their homes.
Take on the role of Wes, the coyote and help bring this village back from the brink in this puzzle-filled life sim. The people of the village of Lonesome have vanished, and a mysterious tower has risen from the ground, bringing secrets of a long-buried village now disturbed.
Equipped with a magic magnifying glass, you’ll solve puzzles using the magnifying glass to reveal glues to help you on your quest. Lonesome Village is a non-combat game with a gorgeous art style that will give you a sense of calm and delight to see what lies around the next corner. Lonesome Village has a release date of November 1st, 2022
The Eternal Cylinder is a story-rich open-world adventure with a strong narrative developed by Ace Team.
In the game, players control adorable creatures called trebhums which are as defenceless as a lamb. Trebhums are small and round with two legs and can roll like a ball and squirt water from their trunks.
Unfortunately, their world is in danger from a massive Eternal Cylinder rolling over the terrain crushing everything in its path.
Of course, the Trebhums must stop it to survive. However, halting such a massive Cylinder seems futile, especially for the tiny Trebhums.
In the full game, you’ll explore a vast, open world with four unique biomes, each filled with extraordinary flora and fauna. Solve puzzles, and The game looks fantastic in the demo, with some bizarre and beautiful creatures and some not-so-friendly creatures. The Eternal Cylinder has a release date of October 13th, 2022
Sprout Valley by developer Vadzim Liakhovich is a farming simulator game. You play as a cute cat named Nico, who wants to step back from his busy life.
Nico finds the land of Ostara, where he settles down to live a calm and quiet life. On Ostara, Niko will find friends along the way and discover exciting events. Help him to learn what secrets Ostara holds.
With a captivating story and handcrafted animation, you’ll grow vegetables and make the garden of your dreams in this cute game. Then, sell and buy the resources you have gathered. As well as use your tools to accomplish your goal of living a peaceful life in harmony with nature.
The game has procedurally generated levels, so there are virtually endless combinations. In addition, each level has a “seed” and, in future, can be shared with other players to recreate the island and share them across the player base. Sprout Valley has a TBC release.
What demo’s did you try out in the Steam Next Fest? Leave a comment below.