Debate of the Day: What Video Game Do You Play to Relax?

guild wars

My video game life is quite interesting these days. Usually, I’m playing whatever new release is out rather quickly in order to write a timely review about it. It’s still fun that way, but hardly what I’d call a laid back playthrough. And when you’re done with most of these games, especially the single player-heavy ones, you’re done, that’s it. There’s really not that much to go back to later.

Then there are the perennial games that never go out of style, but I would hardly describe as a “leisure” activity either. They may have been out for a while, and can be a lot of fun, but I have to say I’m usually incredibly tense during a match of Halo, League of Legends or Call of Duty. They require a decent amount of focus and can induce copious amounts of rage when they don’t go properly.

That leaves game that I would classify as true “leisure activities.” Games that are actually pretty relaxing to play casually. I don’t think there are really all that many for me, but if I had to pick a few, I have to say that quest/looting/ARPG/MMO type games are what I’m talking about. You can play Torchlight 2 or Diablo 3 or Guild Wars 2 whenever you want, for however long you want, and don’t have to worry about playing either fast, or competitively. You can simply quest, level and loot at your own pace, and I find this to be the most rewarding game type when I’m really just trying to unwind.

What about you? What games do you play when you want to relax?

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  1. Tiger Woods or generally laid back sports games.
    I’d say most IPad/Smart phone games in general too.

    As far as consoles go specifically, that’s a real tough question.
    Maybe the Party Play modes in COD (ie gun game, one in the chamber, sticks n stones)

    Good topic.

  2. Usually it’s one of the first two Uncharted games. Just pick a good combat level and blast my way through a few stages. Aside from the really well-balanced gameplay, the games aren’t too far in the way of manic or violent tendencies, they move fast, and the characters are fun to hang out with.

    Recently, it’s been Shadow of the Colossus, simply because it’s a game that knows when to be quiet.

  3. Pokemon.

    I have a spinal injury, so a lot of my rehab involves taking it easy on the couch. I don’t like to use a console to game most of the time because my wife can’t watch TV with me hogging the whole screen.

    I was playing Heart Gold for a while just trying to get my team strong enough to beat Red, but leveling in that game gets tedious near the end.

    I got Black 2 when it came out. I wasn’t that crazy about White when I had it, but I have been nothing but pleased with Black 2. I spent a good chunk of my rehab completing my living Pokedex, and now I’m EV training a team. It’s just engaging enough to take my mind off of things, but not so much that I can’t pay attention to whatever is on the TV.

  4. Gotham City Imposters. It’s like COD and Team Fortress. I’m reeeaaallllly good at it and it’s just fun to play in general. Plus everyone’s out to have fun, not competitive like other shooters

  5. I tend to lean towards open world games when it comes to relaxing. Games where you can explore, and have free roam over the entire game. Rockstar is really good at making this possible, even in LA Noir, and Red Dead Redemption.

  6. Pokemon Gold, replays of the Mass Effect series on Easy, the Sims 3, wandering and exploring Skyrim, the xbox Scene It games, NBA 2K11 and franchise mode on Madden.

  7. Depends on the situation but these are the staples:

    Skate 3
    Full House Poker
    Far Cry 3 (now that I beat it, just knocking out some hunting/death missions)

  8. Any rockstar game, GTA4 or Red Dead Redemption specifically. Going on a rampage or just crashing a nice car into something really helps me relax.

  9. to relax I like to play some classics like Lumines with it’s catchy J-Pop techno club music is good fun, hexic and of course tetris if I only have my phone handy

  10. Fallout NV (3 also works, but I like NV better), The Sims 3 and the Oddworld games (all of them, if you don’t know them you should try them out, they’re all available on Steam)

  11. Just Cause 2 Mercenary Mode is my go to game for goofing off.

    I can also load up Skyrim and just run around (100% complete in regards to Achievements) I always end up finding one or two places I’ve never been before.

  12. I like to play sports games to relax. Madden or UFC Undisputed 3. Something that I can pick up and play a game of any time, over and over again. I used to play GTA San Andreas a lot too but my copy of the disc sharted out on me. Dead Rising can be good too but the whole time limit thing kinda ruins it. Open world games are always fun to relax with.

  13. Sudoku, Minecraft and Fable.
    I also play Fable when I’m so high I just want to enjoy some ambience, I go to The Arboretum – the place behind the Greatwood Gorge demon door. Rain, awesome relaxing music and an interesting setting make for some awesome vegetating.

  14. Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time for N64

    I was surprised to find there was only one other old school classic on here, Sonic for Sega Genesis

  15. Dragon Age is a great one to kick back and relax with. Great story and absolutely no time limits. Hit a stressful part of my life, and 20+ hours in i felt like I was beginning to feel better.

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