The world is in the midst of a pandemic. While it's important to stay informed, and up-to-date on the latest COVID-19-related news, it's also OK to take mental breaks.
Video games are among the best forms of entertainment to help provide an escape. Here are nine titles to help ease your stress.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons
(Nintendo Switch) KGUN's review
Nintendo's latest hanging with animal friends simulator is packed with depth and charm for both experienced gamers and newcomers. In Animal Crossing: New Horizons, you play as a villager who's sent create your very own island paradise, and the possibilities are truly endless. The game provides a constant positive attitude and sense of whimsy, making each play session an absolute joy.
(PlayStation 4, PC) KGUN's review
Tetris Effect enhances the classic puzzle game's formula with a sense of style and pizzazz. If you're into high scores and challenging speeds, this game provides it, but Tetris Effect's "chill marathon" is the mode to play to cure any anxiety in the short term. If your tetriminos reach the top of the playfield, the board simply resets rather than hitting you with a frustrating game over. It's the same old Tetris, but cool Tetris.
(PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC)
This outer space adventure is layered with mystery and intrigue. The less said about the plot, the better, but if you're into page-turning adventures with a new twist around every corner, Outer Worlds is for you.
Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age
For the Japanese role-playing game enthusiast, the classic Dragon Quest formula is enough to improve any rough day. If comfort food was a video game, this adventure would fit the description. The series' newest adventure Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age is available on most platforms, but the Switch version packs extra features, including the entire game playable in a classic retro art style. It's time to save the world by defeating one slime at a time.
Untitled Goose Game
(Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC)
Are you in need of a good laugh? Have you ever wanted to take on the role of a goose? Untitled Goose Game assists you with both of those needs in this honk-tastic romp. You're a goose on the loose with the goal of causing absolute mayhem in a village filled with unsuspecting
humans. Have fun!
(PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PS Vita, iOS, Android)
Stardew Valley lets you live out your farming fantasies. In this role-playing indie game, you can plant crops, date townsfolk, and fight monsters in mines! Its addictive tendencies will cause you to lose hundreds of hours, and gain back a sense of warmth and happiness.
(PlayStation 4, iOS, PC)
Donut County is for the person who needs to clean in order to destress. In the game, you play as a hole in the ground that sucks up objects in the world and the job isn't done until the entire area is clean. Its simple premise makes for an odd, yet satisfying two-hour experience.
(PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, PC)
Journey's ability to convey emotion is a perfect detractor. If you've never played this modern-classic, don't look anything up, just go in blind. By the time you complete this free-flowing adventure, you'll wonder how you ever got by without experiencing it.
Super Mario World
(Nintendo Switch Online, Super Nintendo)
What is there to say about the classic Nintendo 2D platformer that hasn't ready been said? Super Mario World is like a warm cup of hot cocoa on a rainy day. It's an absolutely perfect game and everything about it oozes positivity and fun. Mamma-mia, this game is still fantastic.