The Steam Summer Sale is off to a good start this week. After good deals on The Wolf Among Us, Tomb Raider, and Skyrim over the weekend, a few more of our favorite PC games go on sale today.
Don't forget to check out GOG's summer deals, too.
Reminder: if a game isn't a daily deal or a flash sale, it could pop up later in the sale for an even lower price. If you want to be safe, wait until June 30 to pick up a sale-long deal.
5 - Surgeon Simulator 2013
75% off: $2.49 / £1.74 - Steam store page
To enjoy Surgeon Simulator, you have to like that the impossibly finicky controls and unpredictable physics—game-breaking flaws anywhere else—are by design, and that you'll occasionally stab your patient in the eye with a scalpel when you meant to pick up a saw. The jokes that endear us to Surgeon Simulator—that QWOP-like surgery is hard, that throwing a heart into an open chest cavity qualifies as a transplant—are used up pretty quickly, but there is some joy to mastering all the operations, especially when taking turns and laughing at the failures of your friends.
4 - Risk of Rain
75% off: $2.49 / £1.74 Steam store page Flash sale: Buy it before 8 p.m. EST
Where most roguelikes are slow and methodical, Risk of Rain is fast and frenetic. A constantly ticking clock increases the game difficulty every few minutes, until dozens of weak enemies turn into massive piles of bosses. Risk of Rain is a tough game, but it also strikes a great balance between skill and luck—there are 9 playable characters, each with unique attacks and special abilities, and there are dozens of power-ups to memorize. Hunting for that perfect combination for a successful run is what a good roguelike is all about. Bonus: Risk of Rain's devs recently updated their blog to announce that they're moving the game to a new engine, which will fix some of the game's technical issues.
3 - Dark Souls: Prepare to Die Edition
75% off: $4.99 / £4.99 - Steam store page
Dark Souls often gets discounted to $5, but if you haven't picked it up already, you're missing out on one of the best action RPGs of the past five years. It's brutally difficult but rewards the determined with a deeply interconnected world to explore, precise combat to master, and so, so many secrets to find. Dark Souls almost never tells you where to go or what to do, which is so uncommon these days that it's initially daunting. Dig in, and you'll realize how refreshing it is to discover and defeat everything yourself. Just remember to install DSfix , the mod that fixes Dark Souls' terrible locked resolution and other issues.
2 - Arma 3
50% off: $29.99 / £17.99 - Steam store page
The sandboxy war simulator has never dropped below $35, so this is the cheapest Arma 3 has ever been. Bohemia has done some good work augmenting Arma 3 with the free “Zeus” DLC recently, and over 7,700 mods and custom mission content await in Steam Workshop . Make sure you're close to the recommended spec, but this is absolutely one of the highest-fidelity, open-ended, moddable, and malleable PC games you can own.
1 - Hitman Collection
80% off: $8.99 / £5.99 - Steam store page Flash sale: Buy it before 8 p.m. EST
Hitman: Absolution wasn't exactly our thing , but this collection includes the game that made us disappointed in IO Interactive's latest stab at the series: Blood Money. Blood Money, released in 2007, is where it all came together: the elaborate maps, complex AI, arsenal of deadly weapons, and the incredible varied ways all those pieces can come together. Take Tom Francis' word for it : "Hitman is a murder simulator, and that might be a terrible thing. I don't know. But if you're going to make one, make it as beautiful as Blood Money. Make it a dark and complex work of interactive art, a working model of the mathematics of lies. Six years later, people like me will still be too enthralled with playing it to care." Unfortunately this collection omits 2004's Hitman: Contracts ( it's also on sale separately for $1.99 / £0.99 ) but it does include the first two games, which are a fun nostalgia trip that show how far the series has evolved.
Other great deals today
Remember that games not categorized as Daily Deals or Flash Sales may be reduced further later in the sale.