Steam's latest 'Game Festival' event offers up 59 free indie game demos
Get a taste of the trade show experience at homeBy Cohen Coberly
In brief: In December, Valve offered its Steam users a taste of the gaming trade show experience via the "Game Festival," a three-day digital event that corresponded with the real-world Game Awards. It allowed users at home to test out several in-development games through timed demos. Now, Steam is trying this event format out again (but on a bigger scale) with the Game Festival's "Spring Edition."
Overall, the Spring Edition Game Festival isn't much different than its predecessor. It's still tied to a real-life event (or events, in this case -- more on that in a moment), and there are still game demos for players to enjoy. However, there are far more of them this time around: dozens instead of a handful.
These demos showcase games from the Indie Megabooth, The Mix, Day of the Devs, and Wings, and there's quite a bit of variety. Upon first glance, there appear to be multiple puzzle games, a couple RPGs, and even a few retro-style platformers. Since the latest Game Festival is primarily indie-focused, don't expect to see any big-name titles in the demo line-up. They're all smaller, lesser-known projects that you've likely never heard of before.
That's far from a bad thing, though. The indie market is arguably where you'll find much of the innovation in this industry, and there are so many demos on offer (59 in total) here that you're virtually guaranteed to find something that appeals to your tastes.
There's the adorable afterlife boat management simulator Spiritfarer (you take care of the dead as you ferry them to the next life), the grim side-scrolling hack-and-slash known as Vigil, and Carrion, a "reverse horror" game in which you play as a monster tasked with stalking and destroying any humans that you meet.
If you feel like taking some of these games out for a test drive, feel free to cruise by the Game Festival page for yourself. The event runs from today to March 23, so you have about five full days to experience some of the latest indie titles.