Key Provided Coverage

I occasionally stream on Twitch, push content to YouTube (presently mostly Twitch highlights), and occasionally also post content on this website. Once in a while said content is done with a key provided. I generally get keys either via Keymailer, Terminals.IO, Team Critical Hit, or on a couple occasions, direct from the developer/publisher. I’m not sure to what degree the publisher has direct influence on who gets keys via Keymailer and Terminals, and how much is decided by said PR firms. I believe that in the case of Keymailer, it is the publisher who grants the keys, while with Terminals it appears to be handled by the Terminals staff. Below I just note, “key provided via”, as an overall cover, but figure that in most via Keymailer, that likely means the publisher.

I’m also not 100% sure when a key provided becomes “sponsored content”, but I’ve never tagged any of said content with the sponsored tag, as I’d assume that is when they provide the key not only directly, but provided some other incentive to stream it. However, I do mention a key was provided, at least in the fist stream/highlight/video, and most typically in the description of the highlight, especially as the highlight might cut my disclaimer.

The purpose of this page is to try and present a list of a content produced, where I was provided a key in some shape or form. It might not be comprehensive, but I’m endeavouring to make it as compresenive as possible. If I ever get a board game, then I’d add it to this list as well. If I did an article on it, and that includes most, if not all the content pushed for it, then I’ll just let the article itself link to the videos.

Not included on this list are keys won via contests, or mass giveaways, lucking into a beta (with two exceptions noted below, though if beta access was ever granted just for content purposes, then it would be noted below, just never happened as of the initial writing). The below are keys provided for content purposes.

Keys gifted by online friends, viewers, whatever, for content creation purposes (and not just filling my Steam Wishlist for birthday, fun, or holiday reasons ), will be noted at the end with Gifted Keys section. See that section for more details.

On occasion, I may call out a title as being okay, to even good, but might say it just isn’t streamable, or worth streaming again… or something to that effect. In general this means that I enjoy the title enough, but not so much as to be a fun title for me to stream, and given I’m not looking to make a living off streaming (though bless it if I did), I can afford the luxury of just doing it for fun, and if it’s a title that is too close to meh, for me personally, then I don’t see a point in streaming a lot of it.

Coverage comes via this site, my Twitch Page, or on occasion my YouTube page. Once upon a time I was going to focus mostly on the YouTube, but Twitch is a bit easier with my schedule… I’d stream to my Mixer more, but I haven’t been able to get a smooth stream there yet.

The games here are more or less in alphabetical order, except for the first two, which are on this list, not because I got a key or beta access for content purposes, but did get to show them off earlier than the public at large.

Gigantic. Technically, this title wouldn’t normally be here as didn’t get a key or into the beta for content purposes, just lucked into the beta, but I did get special permission to stream it before the NDA dropped with a number of other content creators. A Few Gigantic Highlights was the article for that special event.

Dreadnaught. Like Gigantic above, this normally wouldn’t be here on this list for the same reasons. However, I again got permission to stream it before the NDA dropped (same PR guy at the time, Thor on Twitch who had just moved from Gigantic to Dreadnought) and had a ton of keys to giveaway.
First Dreadnought Match
2nd Dreadnought Match and Giveaway Winner
Another Match Another Giveaway
Trying to Give Away Dreadnought Keys – But No Viewers

Airheart. Key provided via Keymailer. Taking to the Clouds with Airheart: Tales of Broken Wings is the only stream kept, though I think I streamed it a second time. One of those titles that I occasionally think I should stream it again. It’s relaxing enough, and good enough… but at the same time is just on the edge enough not to stream even when I play it, to have missed further times.

Arboria. Key provided via Terminals. Trying Not to Suck at Arboria. I’ll leave it to the video description to explain my thoughts on it in more full, but here’s the basics. After the first hour of what seems to be a very early build, I’m not sure it is worth the $20 yet, but it shows promise as a rouge like if the more clunky bits get worked out.

Banners of Ruin – Key provided via Keymailer. Checking Banners of Ruin – Key Provided – PT1.

Battlefleet Gothic: Armada II. Key provided via Terminals. So far the only one kept has been For the Emperor, Let’s Try Battlefleet Gothic: Armada II. I just had a hard time figuring out how to do well in it, might do more coverage anyhow, because in general, I like the Warhammer 40K and Classic Warhammer universes (and no, I never played the tabletop versions).

Breach. Key provided via Keymailer. I only got to do Trying Breach, and planned on doing more, but then they announced they were shutting down… Shame too, not only because I planned on more content, but because I thought it was a unique game, even if there are some questions on what was happening on the backside. Hopefully it is picked up by somebody…

Call of Cthulhu: The Official Video Game. Key provided via Terminals. Call of Cthulhu First Look (Part 1) would make one think I had more parts…. never made it back to this title. It sadly didn’t grab me strong enough, it’s meh, not horrible, but not enough to really say play, and show others.

Clustertruck. Key provided via Terminals. For some reason, I can’t find a highlight of me playing this myself, though I know I did it on stream, perhaps I didn’t save a highlight. My Youngest Son Plays Clustertruck (he’d have been 7 at the time) is the only coverage I see of that off hand…

The Church in the Darkness. Key provided via Terminals.
Coverage coming soon.
Just How Dark is this Church? – The Church in the Darkness – Key Provided Coverage.

Chuck’s Challenge 3D 2020 – Key provided via Keymailer. From the maker of Chip’s Challenge comes a new generation of puzzle challenges. Trying Chuck’s Challenge. The long and short of it. Fun enough, and at $10, hard to complain, but if I wasn’t provided the key, I’d probably wait for $5-7 sale, but I just liked Chip’s Challenge, and those that loved it probably should jump on this.

Conan Exiles. Key provided via Terminals. I wrote up Conan Exiles – Early Alpha Thoughts. I’m fairly sure I did some streams after that, but I don’t think I kept any highlights. I never got fully into it.

The Cycle. Key provided via Keymailer. Betas are very short, so I’ll do my best to do them during their open periods. Game will be free to play, and from what I hear, most everyone who applies via the main site, gets one. In this case, they key used to download the game was via the one from Keymailer… I did get one via the signup though, seems most people who sign up get one. So do it. It is actually a really fun game.
Playing the Cycle – Tutorial
Playing the Cycle – First Match
Playing the Cycle – More Matches, Chatting with Viewers
Playing the Cycle – Experimenting with Crafting
Playing the Cycle – Another Match, Another Teamup
Playing the Cycle – Looking at Emotes

Dead Cells. Key provided via Terminals. To be honest, I forgot I was provided the key here until I was checking things out later. I did a highlight of My First Time Playing Dead Cells, and this is a title I’ll have to try to stream again. Great title, a must own I’d dare say.

Deadside – Key provided via Keymailer. I tried to like get into this, but two attempts and nothing… Here’s a VOD that will expire soon. I’m just not into those open world games where nothing really happens until you run into other players… I’m sure it offers some good crafting and all, but I just couldn’t get into it, plus my motion sickness reared it’s head both times.

Destroy All Humans – Key provided via Terminals. A super classic game reborn for the new age.

Disintegration. Key provided via Keymailer. I didn’t end up streaming this title. Didn’t do a write up. “Disintegration’s multiplayer beta doesn’t click as an RTS or FPS” over at PC Gamer pretty well summarizes, my feelings for it. It just didn’t click for me, which is a shame, as it looks cool. Could be fun. Now, there is a single player element that wasn’t up in this beta test, and that could well turn out to be fun. As for now, can’t really say it was outstanding.

Everspace. Key provided by Terminals. I can only find one highlight, Checking Out Everspace, though I know I did a couple other streams, but didn’t make more highlights. Fun, good enough title if I recall properly. I think it’s got some updates since then that might deserve another go…

Far: Lone Sales. Key provided via Keymailer. Only one highlight was made, Let’s Try FAR: Lone Sales. Good enough game, not sure it’s worth the current $15 price, but okay enough, which is probably why I haven’t done it since. It sort of gets the “I get the point” pretty quickly, and just didn’t build enough after that for me personally.

Fell Seal: Arbiter’s Mark. Key provided via Terminals. A successor to the FF Tactics crown? We’ll see… EDIT: Based on the first hour, it is off to a good start. Doesn’t jump in to far too fast.
Fell Seal: Arbiter’s Mark – First Hour

Floatsam. Key provided via Keymailer. Interesting lite city builder. Provides some humor and interesting choices.
Let’s Check Out Flotsam – Key Provided – PT1

Forager. Key provided via Keymailer. A lot better than I was expecting going in… I actually had meant to only stream it for an hour or so, then make calls, get ready for work the next day, all that… ended up going for another half hour on stream, then another half hour off stream once my call was done…
Foraging in Forager PT 1

Gold Express. Key provided via Keymailer. Described as a Cyberpunk Dead by Daylight. It was okay… nothing to write home about so far.
Checking Out Gold Express – Key Provided.

Green Hell. Key provided via Terminals. I covered this twice so far, only saved the first one, Checking Out Green Hell. This one has gone through lots of changes since then, since the stream after that which I didn’t keep, so I’ll likely come back to this soon, though it is another survival game that is (or was at least) overly hard on the thirst/hunger bars. Like come on, you die of thirst or hunger far faster than the game day/nite cycles would suggest you’d be near death by. Hours instead of days. Still might come back to it.

Killing Floor 2. I’m not sure this should be here, as I got in on the beta, and I don’t know if that was the luck of the draw, or because I do content… probably more the former, but Tweets were exchanged as I recall, so I’m going with enough of a chance of the latter to list it here. Another one I haven’t given nearly enough attention to, but I did Killing Floor 2 – Thoughts and Video from the Stress Test Beta.

Long Journey Home. I’m not sure when/where I got the key, but apparently direct from the publisher. I wrote up It’s Going to be a Very Long but Fun Journey Home, which includes links to the stream highlights. One of the ones I might return to someday.

Meeple Station. Key provided via Keymailer. Only one stream so far, Will Meeple Station Satisfy that Spacebase DF-9 Itch? Let’s Find Out. That said, I do plan on coming back.

Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden. Key provided via Terminals. So far the only coverage has been Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden – First Look, and that started to get punishing, but it’s one of the titles I most want to get back to showing off. It deserves attention.

Mystic Vale. Key provided via Keymailer. So Mystic Vale is one of my favorite board games, and I loved this one so much I picked up the expansions on my own dime. I’ve covered it only twice so far, and there probably will be more coverage. First was Trying Mystic Vale – Steam Version, and then I got back to it after a lot of improvements with Returning to Mystic Vale.

Neoverse. Key provided by Keymailer. My attempts to stream this title hasn’t worked out. First time I was having massive frame drops… the day I was going to make a second attempt, again massive frame drops and encoding issues with the game I was doing prior to it, so I held off even trying. Hopefully, when I get to a third attempt, it’ll work out better.
Third attempt didn’t fare much better. Not sure at this point if the game overloads the network (which I HIGHLY doubt) or if I just have network issues every time I try to stream it. Stream died twice during the attempt, and had lots of dropped frames. I did manage to save two highlights (second one starts after it auto reconnected… it didn’t reconnect after the second drop).
Trying Neoverse – PT 1
Trying Neoverse – PT 2
I may try it off stream to get a better idea of if I like the game or not…

Offensive Combat Redux. Key provided via Terminals. Checking Out Offensive Combat Redux Beta was the highlight. As I recall, I wasn’t impressed enough to really push for more content.

Overgrowth. Key provided via Keymailer. I did Playing Overgrowth – Slight Review, and that’s been it. Probably won’t be more. Okay title, but just not one I find interesting enough to stream again.

Pascal’s Wager. Key provided by Team Critical Hit. This is a really good iOS game, sort of along the lines of Dark Souls. I haven’t been able to play it as much as needed to write an article yet, but overall impressions so far are good. Also I’m still having issues with streaming iOS games, so can’t do it that way yet.

Pine. Key provided via Keymailer. Cool open world single player game. I’ve seen videos on how the NPCs evolve or de-evolve, over time as you influence the world around them… evolve might be the wrong term, but they change, they grow stronger or weaker as you work with or against them.
Checking Out Pine ( Key Provided ) – PT 1

Rapture Rejects – Key provided via Keymailer. There were no players as of any attempts to play so far. As of Oct 4, 2020, I’ve given up trying to find players, and they don’t have bots to play against… so dead game.

Rebel Galaxy. Key provided by the developer. Getting an Early Look at Rebel Galaxy was my article, with highlights… great game, can’t wait for the sequel/prequel… The press preview was somewhat limited… and I don’t know if that expanded to the full version on release, or if I purchased it with my own money. Steams/videos did get muted due to the music, so I didn’t Stream it as much as it deserved. Did I say I can’t wait for the sequel/prequel?

Satisfactory. Key provided via Keymailers… So even before this came out, before I got a key, back when I was hoping beyond hope just to be part of the NDA Alpha… I covered it with a short story called A Satisfactory Job. I also covered it on my article On the Odd Cult of Launcher Loyalty. So to say I’ve given it some coverage might be an understatement, and is probably the most heavily covered of the games I was given a key for. On YouTube I’ve pushed most of my Twitch Highlights, with my Satisfactory Playthrough Highlights playlist. As those are encoded at Twitch’s end, then again at YouTube’s end, probably the worst of the quality, so might be best to stick to the series on Twitch itself.
Satisfactory – Test Weekend PT 1
Satisfactory – Test Weekend PT 2
Satisfactory – Test Weekend PT 3
Satisfactory Early Access – Fresh Start PT 1
Satisfactory Early Access – Fresh Start PT 2
Satisfactory Early Access – Fresh Start PT 3
Satisfactory Early Access – Fresh Start PT 4
Satisfactory Early Access – Fresh Start PT 5
Satisfactory Early Access Part 6 – Onto Oil
Highlight: Very Quick Factory Tour

There will be more.

Seven: The Days Long Gone. Key provided via Keymailer. This is one I thought I’d do a lot of, but ended up only doing Trying Seven: The Days Long Gone. This one I might return to, but don’t be too surprised if I don’t. It was on that border for me.

ShockRods. Key provided via Keymailer. Here the publisher had the offered keys section, rather than a request from me. I usually skip those, but I figured I’d give it a try… unfortunately, this was a time limited beta, and the beta expired literally the day before I was going to stream it.

Sigma Theory. Key provided via Keymailer. As I note in the highlight below, I’m only two hours into it, so hard to tell what to think. I don’t think I was doing things right, so I was hurting my scientific advancements… and when you try to get a scientist from another country, there’s this interesting battle, but you don’t have to do that battle for when they take one from you… aside from that bit of off balance, it was okay. If they didn’t carry the theme so well, I’d probably be a bit more meh on it, but the theme works well enough to carry it further. Might just not be my sort of game, though I usually am fine with turn based strategy games… here I just really need to find a way to get more scientists on my team.
First Look at Sigma Theory.

Space Hulk: Tactics. Key provided via Terminals. So far, Space Hulk Tactics First Look is the only highlight, and only stream period… but I did enjoy it enough I’ll try to get more.

Steambirds Alliance. Key provided via Terminals. Fun game by some of the people who made Realm of the Mad God. It is a twin stick shooter MMO with permadeath. The first stream is Checking Out Steambirds Alliance. There will be more.

Streets of Rogue. Key provided via Keymailer. Genuinely cool rogue like game. You pick from a number of characters, add mutators, and the like, then try to get to the upper levels of the city.
Checking Out Streets of Rogue.

The Surge. Key provided via Terminals. Because I got this on PS4, and I don’t have a good way of reliably streaming from there, I didn’t stream it, but did write up the First Two Hours of the Surge. I still suck too much at Souls like games to do much more with… okay game overall, but not as good as say the From Software titles directly, and better than Lords of the Fallen… I have recently reinstalled it, as my 10 year old (as of this writing in 2019) is obsessed with Dark Souls, so I might have him give it a spin, get his input. That’s a strong might though.

Undying – Key provided via devs (lucked into it, not given just for streaming reasons). Trying the Undying Alpha.

Volcanoids – Key provided via Terminals.

Wartitle. Key provided via Keymailer. Checking Out Wartitle was the only highlight of this one. Given my love of board games, and Armello, I had much higher hopes for this. Title is okay though, and like some others, just not really something to stream.

We Happy Few. Key provided via Terminals. I wrote up We Happy Few – Preview and Second Look Coming Soon. This was a title I had a lot of hope for… it did get better, but I didn’t keep any of the highlights after that the one in the article there.

Wingspan – Key provided via Keymailer. One of my favorite board games, now in digital form.

Gifted Titles

So far none… If a viewer, online friend, or somebody gifts a key, and I know who did the gifting, then I might include it here (assuming they are okay with me disclosing their channel, Twitter or whatever), if they provided said key specifically for content creation. If they provided it just for fun, for birthday, holiday, or other reasons, it might not, it really depends on if they want a call out or not. Want a shoutout, check my Steam Wishlist out, send a game as a gift, a voila, appear on this list (or appear anonymously if you want). Though if a developer/publisher gifted one that way, it’d probably have to go in the above.

Random Musings of Father, Gamer, Author, and occasional YouTuber, and Twitch Streamer, Brian A. Thomas.