Blaugust Reviews – Humble Choice March 2023 Edition

I’m filling in for the incomparable UnwiseOwl again this month on summing up our group review of the offerings in this month’s Humble Choice bundle. Every month, when the bundle releases, a bunch of us get together on the Blaugust Discord and hash out which games we’re most excited about and divvy up the titles for us each to look at during the month. Some folks just take a quick look, and some really go all in, but we want to give you a jumping off point to help you decide if this month’s bundle is going to be worth it for you.

Unfortunately, despite my best intentions, this post is coming out just a little too late if you were debating whether or not to pause – the automatic charge for this month’s bundle will have already gone through by the time this post goes live. However, if you were on the fence about activating your subscription for this month, you still have a few more days before the bundle rolls over to April on Tuesday, April 4th.

The first headliner from the bundle was Biomutant. Oddly, it’s neither the most expensive title in the bundle, nor does it have particularly good reviews. Stalking Vengeance of Cubic Creativity went all in on this title, putting in around 40 hours, and found it to be interesting, even if it wasn’t quite living up to its potential. Some components (like the character creation and the general worldbuilding) were top notch, and others (like the KBM controls and the NPC character development) were beyond disappointing. All in all, it seems to have come by its mixed rating honestly, but as long as you use a controller and are patient through an overly long intro section, it’s an enjoyable – if ultimately forgettable – game.


Paeroka of Nerdy Bookahs took on the secondary headliner this month – Jurassic World Evolution 2. Sure, it’s a more niche title, which is probably what put it into the second spot rather than the first, but if it’s game you’ve had your eye on, this is probably the cheapest you’ll be able to pick it up, and might carry the bundle for you if this is your jam. Paeroka enjoyed it, although she felt the campaign mode somehow managed to be both too short and tedious. Thankfully, the other three game modes are more engaging, although the Sandbox mode requires you to unlock maps via completing them in other modes. There are some quality of life upgrades from the first game, including the ability to build with the game paused, but it’s still a bit micromanagement heavy if that is a turn off. Overall, a solid game at a deep discount, although it has the absurd amount of DLC, which has become expected of Frontier Games, and none of that is part of the package.


For the classic JRPG fans, there’s Edge of Eternity. Naithin of Time to Loot found it to be fairly enjoyable in a comfortable way, as a player who has a history with the genre. There’s nothing groundbreaking here, and some of the edges are still a little rough, but for an indie game on a budget, it perhaps looks and sounds better than one might expect. If mediocre voice acting and animations that range from basic to disconcerting are a deal breaker, or if you’re not already a fan of this genre, it’s probably not the right game for you, but for someone looking for a new JRPG, it seems to be a pretty solid choice.


UnwiseOwl of Leaflocker struggled a bit with Hero’s Hour. Can you call a game a success if what it does it makes you want to play the game that it’s heavily inspired by? As another gamer who grew up with the Heroes of Might and Magic franchise, this was probably the game in this month’s choice I was also most excited by. UnwiseOwl found this tribute to be needlessly complex in the amount of detail that is in the factions & town management, with far less interesting combat mechanics. This homage might actually be more successful for folks without fond memories to compare to, however, since the Steam reviews are Mostly Positive.


I took Rogue Lords for a short spin, and although I loved the concept and the aesthetics, I wasn’t a big fan of the pacing. Overworld traversal is slow, combat is slow, and good lord, is the text reveal speed slow. When I play a roguelike, I want to be able to dip in for short sessions, and have to think fast on my feet. However, I may have liked it more if I approached it from the perspective of someone diving into a turn based RPG and stopped trying to rush it. I loved the dark art style, and the mechanic where you’re allowed to cheat since, duh, you’re the devil is brilliant. Depending on your expectations of the game, you’ll either love it or be bored silly. Don’t be like me, adjust your expectations and enjoy the ride.


Kluwes of Many Whelps played a few hours of the 3D platformer, Demon Turf and was not only satisfied by the game play, but really enjoyed the soundtrack. This quirky title features 2D sprites, placeable checkpoints instead of static ones, and optional collectibles to hunt down. The levels are short, but well designed, and the game comes with a full second game mode called The Tower. In The Tower, you climb until you die, but you carry over permanent upgrades in between attempts, which is a neat cookie to toss towards fans of roguelite platformers, but without the procedural generation bits. Kluwes actually liked the game enough to recommend the full bundle purchase based on this title alone – which is a pretty big thumbs up, I would think.


Magi of IndieCator tackled this month’s horror title, the deeply disturbing Golden Light. This procedurally generated FPS survival horror is not for the faint of heart or the weak of stomach. Once you dive into a fleshy hole in the ground to save your love, you never know what you’ll encounter. You can go in guns blazing, and destroying everything in your wake, but this infuriates the living dungeon you’re in, making everything harder. Not everything is what you expect, and there’s bits of story scattered throughout if you look hard enough. However, the bosses are bullet sponges, and it’s easy to make fatal mistakes in The Gut, which will put you back at the beginning of the level. This game will be most appealing to fans of tense body horror who aren’t terribly concerned about whether or not the gameplay feels fair.


Because I really want to like creature collection RPGs, and since I have yet to learn that they frustrate the hell out of me, I spent about half an hour with Monster Crown. This might actually be the most niche title in a bundle that seemed to have more than its share this month, because really this is probably only going to appeal to Pokémon super-fans who have run out of other stuff to play. It seemed perfectly serviceable, but perfectly serviceable also means “nothing special”. It’s also rather short, and several Steam reviews complain about lingering bugs. Maybe it gets better, I don’t know. As is typical of games in the last slot, this isn’t the game that most people will pick up the bundle for, but for creature collector fans, it might provided a dozen or so hours of fun.

In conclusion, if you’ve been waiting for a deal on Jurassic World Evolution 2 or Biomutant (and you’re comfortable enough with the quirks of these two titles), this bundle is definitely worth grabbing from a cost perspective alone. Otherwise, unless you’re really excited about two or more of this month’s indies, there’s just not enough genre overlap in the March bundle for most people to make it a good value, although Kluwes makes a strong case for Demon Turf being this month’s hidden gem.

Personally, I actually considered skipping this month’s bundle, before I remembered that I never skip them. After all, I never know what I might be in the mood to play tomorrow.

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