All the free demos you can play in Steam Next Fest this October

Steam Next Fest’s week-long event features demos ranging from psychological card-based horror games, to comedic visual novels and pixel-art cyberpunk.

Running from October 1st to 7th, Steam Next Fest, previously named Steam Game Festival, will be a week-long event featured on the platform. It gives players the opportunity to enjoy free demos for upcoming games, to chat with developers, and to provide them with valuable feedback.

Registrations for October’s Steam Next Fest opened up back in July of this year, meaning these developers have had plenty of time to polish up their playable demos since then. Even better for us players, in order to have their games featured, developers must release their games between October 7th 2021 and May 1st 2022.

The Last Campfire lonely protagonist
Image: The Last Campfire / Hello Games

The Last Campfire, developed and published by Hello Games (creators of the now redeemed No Man’s Sky), brings us a completely new vibe with this 3D puzzle adventure.

Developed by the Artistocrats, Starship Troopers: Terran Command is a real-time strategy game based off of the 1998 movie of the same name. The game features “heroics, explosions, gore and Bugs. Lots of Bugs” that you’ll have to combat with tactics combining terrain, line of sight, and line of fire.

Next is Tunic, an action-adventure, isometric game developed by Andrew Shouldice. Playing as the cutest fox protagonist I’ve ever seen, you’re equipped with a simple sword as you “discover spooky ruins, and fight terrible creatures”.

Airhead, developed by Octaco Games, is a pretty wacky puzzle platformer. In a side-scrolling, metroidvania-style world, you’re tasked with trying to keep a head-like organism from dying as it leaks air, whilst battling monsters and tackling environmental puzzles.

Unexplored 2: The Wayfarer’s Legacy, developed by Ludomotion, is the sequel to action-adventure RPG Unexplored. Tasked with destroying the Staff of Yendor, the possibility of your death is quite real. But death doesn’t mean your task has failed entirely, with an innovative piece of design that may “come back to bite you in the ass” somehow.

Mahokenshi, developed and published by Game Source Studio, is a deck-builder and turn-based strategy board game. Playing as a samurai wielding magic, you must drive the demons from the Celestial Islands.

Decoherence, created by Efecto Studios, is a turn-based and top-down strategy shooter game in which you build your own robots and battle it out alongside other players in PvP matches or an optional single-player mode.

Itorah from Grimbart Tales is a beautifully handcrafted, 2.5D action platformer inspired by South and Central American landscapes. As seemingly the only human left in the world, Itorah must discover what happened to everyone and save the world from a mysterious plague.

Similarly hand-crafted Life of Delta, by Airo Games, is a point-and-click sci-fi game set in a post-apocalyptic Japan where “all humans are wiped out”. Filled with rusty looking, hand-painted landscapes, fully animated cutscenes, and over 50 mini-games, the game follows the robot life of Delta, its protagonist.

ANNO: Mutationem couldn’t be more different though. With 2D and 3D cyberpunk pixel art/anime styled laser swords and battle mechs, Thinking Stars’ upcoming RPG features a “rich, dark, and bizarre plot” to look forward to.

If you’d prefer to spook yourself, there’s always the horror card-based game Inscryption. Developed by Daniel Mullins Games, this curious combination of elements is not for the faint of heart when you “acquire a deck of woodland creature cards by draft, surgery and self mutilation”.

If that sort of darkness isn’t your style, the event also includes an interactive sitcom, Negative Nancy, developed and produced by FEED. As a retail clerk, you take control of your life by simply saying ‘no’ to anyone and everyone.

Last, but not least, Biwar Legend of Dragon Slayer from Devata Game Production is a 3rd person action-adventure where you battle against creatures inspired by Indonesian mythology. A linear pathway means no maps are required and the graphics look amazing already.


Steam Next Fest runs from October 1st to October 7th, 2021.