BY EMSA SMITH: Taking time out from the world and escaping into a different universe is OK: Gaming is a wonderful way to disappear from the daily grind and explore your imagination. Everyone finds different games relaxing, as some may switch off slaying zombies, whilst others can disconnect through tending their crops.
If you’re looking to shut away from the world for a few hours, here are some games you should consider playing:
Available on: PC, macOS, Linux, Nintendo Switch, PS4, Xbox One
Price: $14.99 (Steam)
Step out of the office and into the sunny world of Stardew Valley: Pick up your watering can and get ready to take care of your crops and ensure your sheep are well fed. Filled with a variety of friendly faces ready to help you grow your farm, Stardew Valley is a wonderfully creative game that helps you learn how to care of all kinds of tasty crops, and even head down into the depths of a jewel-filled mine.
It’s not your everyday style of “farming simulator” as there’s an engaging story to accompany you through your days as a farmer, a story which you will find quite surprising.
Available on: PC, Linux, macOS
Hop aboard your sturdy ship and drift along the shimmering waters in Windward: Set sail and complete tasks to help beachside towns stay safe from pesky pirates, or glide across the calm waves as a postman, delivering packages of food and valuables to towns at the other side of the map. Featuring a relaxing soundtrack so gentle it could put you to sleep, Windward is a wonderfully soothing game filled with features fit for every player: If you’re not a fan of blasting ships to smithereens, you can act as a cruise ship for holiday-goers.
The game is easy to drop into every now and again, and you can even play multiplayer to sail along the ocean with friends, or destroy their ship in PvP…
The Sims 4
Available on: PC, MacOS, PS4, Xbox One
Price: $45 (Origin)
If you’re having a bad day, we won’t judge if you decide to trap your Sims in a pool without any ladders, or create a prison cell with only a toilet, fridge and bed inside. Creating a crazy family who plots to destroy the town and play with the lives of your kind-hearted neighbours is a great way to pass the time and blow off some steam.
Even if you’re not looking to create a destructive family, you can live out your dream celebrity lifestyle through your Sims or even help your beloved creations reach their dreams.
Available on: PC, MacOS, Xbox One, PS4
Price: $10 (Minecraft website)
Who doesn’t love slaying zombies and building their dream castle? Anyone can pick up Minecraft and prepare to survive the deadly night: It’s the perfect game to unleash your inner child and build huge structures, or to simply head down into the mines in search of diamonds.
Why not create a server with your friends and shoot skeletons together?
Available on: PC, MacOS, Nintendo Switch, PS$, Xbox One
Price: $19.99 (Steam)
If tending crops isn’t your style and your fed up of heading into space, then maybe looking after the dead is more of your thing. Instead of planning the layout of your farm in Stardew Valley, Graveyard Keeper puts the success of a graveyard in your hands: You are responsible for repairing gravestones and salvaging guts from the dead. Whilst the thought of making money from the death certificates of buried souls sounds disturbing, planning the layout of your very own graveyard is surprisingly relaxing!