Stop trading in those precious hours of sleep just so you can chip away at those RPGs. It’s a fruitless venture. I know, because I’m right there with you. It’s time to make the most of your measly gaming hours. It’s time to feel like you’re getting somewhere. Rest those tired eyes. Get that beauty sleep. Here’s a bunch of games that’ll bring you some satisfaction, and make you feel better about being so god-damned busy all the time.
One and Done
Isn’t it nice when you get to sit down and just finish a game in one sitting? Thankfully, there’s a growing number of these titles, and this trend doesn’t seem to be slowing down. So, rejoice! You can complete these games in 2 or 3 hours.
Child-like fantasy meets twisted horror in this pseudo-sidescroller. You play as Six, a young girl trapped on a seafaring resort known as The Maw. You must navigate your way through its chambers and overcome the disgusting beings dwelling there. The puzzles are easy but the setting is fantastic. Tim Burton would be jealous.
Presented as an 80’s TV show, this trippy text adventure explores horror and sci-fi across four of its chapters. Not much can be said without giving too much away, but it layers up storytelling in very clever and unique ways.
Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons
If there is one game that’ll leave a lasting impression, it’s definitely this one. In it, you’ll control both brothers at the same time. While feeling a little uncoordinated at first, it’s this mechanic that empowers Brothers’ storytelling. Not to mention that the varied world Starbreeze has created is utterly beautiful. Give this one a play. Please!
A Few Sittings
Whether you’re after a grand tale or some shooty-shooty-bang-bang, it’s good to play something with a bit more meat on the bone. Here is a selection of games that you can complete in 10 hours or less.
Despite having an overarching story (that honestly doesn’t matter all that much), Hitman’s episodic model makes it easier to digest than ever. Each lovingly crafted level offers a tremendous amount of replayability, and it’s all too easy to jump in and set yourself a challenge. It’s a satisfying game and one you shouldn’t miss out on.
Resident Evil 7
Capcom knocked it out of the park with the latest instalment of the Resident Evil franchise. With a cast of revolting characters and a story that twists and turns, there’s plenty to see and experience. While it opts for the first person perspective, it’s the most back-to-roots RE game in years.
Valiant Hearts: The Great War
Touching, sad, and beautifully rendered. Valiant Hearts is a comic book brought to life to tell the stories and horrors of WW1. It’s able to convey so much without saying a word and makes you feel for every character. If you’re after a narrative experience with some engaging puzzles, this would be a great place to start.
More That Take a Few Sittings
Metro 2033 & Last Light Redux
Spec Ops: the Line
The Vanishing of Ethen Carter
What Remains of Edith Finch
Pick Up and Play
Is your dinner cooking? Toddler napping? Got some time to kill before work? Perfect. Here are a few titles that’ll help you get that quick fix. As with any pick up and play game, it’s important that you don’t spend fifteen minutes remembering the controls or where you left off last. You jump in, have a good time, and bounce.
An Outpost list wouldn’t be complete without mentioning Rocket League. And for good reason. It’s a phenomenal game! What makes this a strong pick is that each match only lasts five minutes, give or take a few, so it’s really easy to squeeze a bunch of games in. You’ll have your ups and downs with it, but it never stops being fun.
What better way to wait for your dinner than to chase the ultimate dinner? A lot of factors play into how long you’ll last each match, but it’s always a learning experience. What did I do wrong there? And how could I have murdered that man first!? It’s a deep battle royale game of skill and strategy, perfect for a match or three. Get that murdah!
Whether it’s against the computer, a stranger online, or couch-play with your partner, Tekken is always a fun way to kill some time. Arguably, one of the most approachable beat-em-ups out there, it’s fun for all skill ranges and has a lot of characters to play with. Just don’t be Eddy Gordo. Don’t be that person.
More Pick Up and Play
Games to Unwind
Many of the games mentioned above fit within this category, but here’s some more to help you unwind. Remember, progression isn’t necessarily the goal here. It’s all about being in that space and stepping away from the real world for a second. Let’s sooth that jellied mass we call a brain.
What better way to unwind than to take a road trip with your Eastern European uncle. Just load up your busted Laika 601 with supplies and hit the road! Each procedurally generated route crafts a unique story of how you just about made it to the border. You could be crawling through dirt paths as the rain batters your car, or changing a busted tire on the side of the road while your uncle grumbles in the passenger seat. No matter the trouble, you will end up falling in love with your hunk of junk. Minskworks! Hurry up and get it out of Early Access so I can give it Game of the Year already!
Diaries of a Spaceport Janitor
Leave your real job behind and grab that litter picker! It’s time to hit the streets of Xabran’s Rock’s Spaceport. As a janitor with dreams of leaving the system for good, you must spend your days incinerating trash for money. There’s little to no plot and a simple end goal, but the act of living day-to-day is oddly satisfying. You’ll find yourself enjoying the hustle and bustle of the spaceport while you explore. You’ll also grumble as you watch aliens drop trash right in front of you. If you’re going to be a janitor, it might as well be here.
theHunter: Call of the Wild
Even if hunting isn’t your thing, theHunter: CotW is an enjoyable game nonetheless. The simulation aspect may go pretty deep, but never far enough to alienate newcomers. And, tracking animals within the serenity of this beautifully rendered vista is simply a great way to clear the cobwebs. Even if it is disrupted by the crack of your rifle and a crying, orphaned Bambi.
More Games to Unwind
Viscera: Cleanup Detail
Thanks for Reading
These are but a few games for us busy folk to enjoy. I know that there’s plenty more out there, so please leave your suggestions in the comments below. Happy gaming.