Let’s be honest here: The current pandemic crisis sucks. but while we’re all staying inside and spending our time wisely, there is the time to get stuck into some great video game titles and lose yourself in a fantastic storyline, a historic quest, or just seeing how many Sims you can trap in the swimming pool.
Some video game titles now give you the opportunity to put hundreds of hours into them, with DLCs, side quests, and New Game+, several writers from The Edge give their recommendations for video game titles to look into:
Red Dead Redemption 2
Red Dead Redemption 2 (RDR2) is an excellent video game, about protagonist Arthur Morgan and his part in the Dutch van der Linde gang in late 19th century America. But the engaging story, hectic gunfights and emotive characters aren’t why it works so well as something to keep you entertained in self-isolation.
A huge amount of effort was spent on the world of RDR2, the minutiae of this world are what makes it so excellent. Arthur draws much of what he experiences in the world in his journal, animals hunt each other and their corpses decompose in real-time. While certainly unpleasant its these details that make even the more mundane aspects of RDR2 fantastically engaging. I have spent countless hours trying to complete the many challenges, which fall under a variety of categories. While mini-games like poker are boring asides in other games, there’s something very charming about playing poker against other unsavory characters in a 19th-century saloon, especially in the game’s first-person mode.
The outfits, in particular, are very time-consuming, but finding the correct animal in the huge world is fun in itself. The realistic limitations are what creates this sense, you have to use certain weapons on certain animals as to not damage their pelt, you can only carry so many at once, and some animals just naturally have poor quality pelts. The challenge of getting this all right is what makes it rewarding in the long run, very little is done for the player’s sake. The rewards themselves are often a little odd and you end up looking like a crazy 19th-century survivalist, somewhat fitting I guess.
These smaller elements help play into RDR2‘s bigger moments, Arthur’s journal gives you his inner thoughts about missions and characters, and the harshness of the environment reflects the candid storytelling. These elements small to large enable the game to be an excellent time in self-isolation.
– Conor O’Hanlon
Animal Crossing: New Horizons
In this time of international stress and panic, sometimes it feels like you can’t really get away from everything. Animal Crossing: New Horizons offers an idyllic escape that genuinely could not have come at a better time. It’s hard to think about the world ending when I’ve got flowers to grow and cherries to pick and bugs to catch. The genius of the game, and the Animal Crossing series in general, is that it’s so very simple; there is no overarching plot, deep game lore, game-breaking conspiracy theories and so on. You are simply a villager tasked with creating the best town possible for your adorable, massively supportive new animal neighbours, whilst also building yourself a Grand Designs-level house and collecting everything in sight in the process. It’s easy and fun to play, has a beautifully cute aesthetic, and is a sure-fire way to lift anyone’s spirits in this current climate.
– Alice Fortt
Honestly, The Sims 4 is great for any time. But when the whole world is stuck inside with no where to go, simulating the monotony of everyday life has never looked so appealing. The world is in absolute chaos, so instead of choosing your favourite fantasy game, why not enjoy the pleasures of daily life?
Live vicariously through your Sim self while doing unthinkable things like going outside, eating at restaurants and hanging out with friends. And if you go on Origin, you’ll find the base game and expansion packs on sale, so there’s no better time to binge this wonderful gem. You can even buy expansion packs based on what’s missing from your life (I’ve been enjoying Discover University and City Living) for that added sense of escapism during lockdown. The Sims has been with us for 20 years now, but now it’s more necessary than ever.
– Vicky Greer
Assassin’s Creed Odyssey
If there’s any franchise that’ll keep me captivated for hours at a time, then Assassin’s Creed is the one. Every time I start the games I want to visit every sync point, find every collectible and read all of the extra pieces of information that you can unlock about the history and the people. With the setting during the Peloponnesian War, there’s bound to be lots to discover.
You can put 300+ hours into this game and still be nowhere close to discovering everything. Hidden members of the Cult of Kosmos are everywhere, legendary ships abound in the Aegean, and the seemingly endless amount of sidequests will be there to keep you busy. What’s more, as the series’ first RPG title, there are several different endings to the main quest of the game, and New Game+ allows for you to carry your equipment over into a new save file. So why not try to get every possible ending? And then there are the DLCs to consider!
Want a more relaxed experience? Odyssey also contains the more informative Discovery Tour mode that is free for anyone who owns the game and can be purchased separately. Want to expand your creative talents? Try the game’s photo mode or quest builder!
– Louise Chase