Video games are a behemoth of an industry. Every year, hundreds of games get released to captivated audiences. While everyone knows the big names like Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft, it can be daunting to try and actually get into gaming as a hobby when you don’t know where to begin. Luckily, there’s no reason to fumble your way through Call Of Duty if you’re new to the gaming sphere. Plenty of easy to pick up games exist in a variety of genres for those who don’t consider themselves “hardcore” gamers, or those who just want to relax.
1. Stardew Valley
The Stardew Valley 1.4 Content Update is now available for PC, Mac, and Linux on Steam & GOG! pic.twitter.com/FgtrPBvwvf
— ConcernedApe (@ConcernedApe) November 26, 2019
If you’re looking for a stress-free game, Stardew Valley should be at the top of your list. In this pixelated farm simulator, you have inherited your grandfather’s old farm in the heart of the valley. Throughout the years, players will transform the overgrown fields into an idyllic and bountiful farm full of crops. Players can also raise animals, fish, explore caves, craft items, and build relationships with the residents of Pelican Town. One of those residents might even steal your heart, if you’re so inclined. With extremely soothing background music, it’s very easy to lose track of time playing Stardew Valley, but sometimes that sense of whimsy is necessary.
2. When The Night Comes
Platforms: itch.io (PC and Mac)
In terms of gameplay, When The Night Comes is the simplest game on our list. When The Night Comes is a supernatural romance visual novel, or VN, where the player takes on the role of a Hunter, a person who works to protect people from the creatures of the night. The Hunter is sent to the small but spooky town of Lunaris to help solve a string of grisly and mysterious murders. While unraveling this mystery, you’ll be introduced to a colorful cast of characters that you will quickly fall for. With six individual romance paths, two polyamorous paths, and even the option to play without a romance, WTNC is a game with something for every taste. The developers, Lunaris Games, pride themselves on making VNs that are inclusive and representative of everyone, and WTNC succeeds at that flawlessly. With ten main story chapters and two mini-stories, the game is sure to keep you occupied for hours.
3. VA-11 Hall-A
#DailyVA11HallA Day 22, 16th day.
Alma makes a big step in dispelling any doubts Jill has about meeting Gaby in New Year's.
Also, Anna happens again, and again, and again, and again. pic.twitter.com/QrwTpMLW9w
— Sukeban Games (@SukebanGames) December 28, 2019
Another game with graphics that harkens back to the age of pixels, VA-11 Hall-A takes place in a post-dystopian world where everything is touched by technology, corporations are king, and the White Knights prowl the streets to ensure everyone is following the laws. Except, you don’t play as any of these people. Instead, you play as Jill, a bartender at VA-11 Hall-A, also known as “Valhalla”. Part visual novel and part bartending simulator, the game revolves around getting the right drinks for each interesting personality that the bar hosts. VA-11 Hall-A has the branching storylines of a visual novel, but the outcomes are based on just what kind of drinks you serve. Serve the patrons the right drinks, and they might just divulge all kinds of secrets.
4. Don’t Starve
— Klei (@klei) February 8, 2020
Minecraft is well-known as one of the most iconic survival/crafting games, but if that isn’t your style, Don’t Starve might be. Similar in premise to Minecraft, you play as Wilson, a scientist trapped in a mysterious world, who must learn to adapt to his new surroundings and find a way to get back home. The game’s hand-drawn-esque style can be both charming and spooky, adding to the overall vibe of the game. If you don’t want to face the wild and wondrous world alone, there’s also Don’t Starve Together, the standalone multiplayer version of Don’t Starve. Whichever way you choose to play, Don’t Starve is easy to pick up, but the wilderness is truly hard to master. Just make sure you, you know, don’t starve.
Pinstripe is a one-man passion project that is bound to make you emotional. In this platforming/adventure game, you take on the role of Teddy, an estranged ex-minister. When Teddy’s little daughter, Bo, is swept away by a mysterious demonic entity, he must venture through a beautiful yet frozen afterlife to save her. Along the journey, Teddy confronts his own skeletons in the closet, along with Mr. Pinstripe, his nemesis. Fans of Alice In Wonderland, Coraline, and The Nightmare Before Christmas will easily recognize their influences in Pinstripe, with the haunting art and backing music that is sure to chill every player to the bone and simultaneously take their breath away.
6. Monster Prom
OUR FAVORITE MODS
The modtool is great as a creative challenge for artists to create their own content inside the game. We love what @megatr0njones did here.
— Monster Camp is OUT NOW! 🎃 (@monsterprom) February 7, 2020
It’s three weeks until prom, and you have to find a date in this absurd yet charming roleplaying game and visual novel hybrid. Oh, and did we mention that everyone (including yourself) is a monster? Monster Prom is a game that will keep you laughing for hours with its unapologetic dialogue and wacky situations. The game can be played solo or with up to three of your friends as you compete to raise your stats and charm one of your unique classmates into being your date at the biggest school event of the year. With a variety of endings to unlock, its easy to fall in love with your fellow monster classmates. The game even allows you to mod, so there is truly no limit for the artistically adept.
Birds… aren't usually too friendly towards Yarny. Did you manage to avoid them? pic.twitter.com/fKfqPH7srq
— Unravel (@unravel_game) July 15, 2016
Another puzzle platformer that will take your breath away, Unravel is a hidden gem of a game. In it, you play as Yarny, a little creature made of a single strand of yarn. Throughout the game, you utilize your yarn to solve physics-based puzzles and climb through gorgeous, literally larger-than-life scenery. Along the way, you slowly begin to piece together the heartfelt and wordless story of a long-lost family. While the concept of the game is simple in itself, the puzzles are complex enough to have you scratching your head as you try to avoid the dangers of the outside world.
8. The Sims 4
Of the games on this list, The Sims is the most well known. The Sims 4, released originally in 2014, is the latest entry into the well-known life simulation game. If you’re unfamiliar with the franchise, The Sims is a game where your creativity is the limit. From molding your characters just right to literally building mansions from the ground up, you can do almost anything in the game as you work to achieve your Sim’s dreams. While the base game has plenty of features, new expansion packs like City Living and Eco Lifestyle are always being released with new features to further expand the world. You can easily live the life of your dreams, all from the comfort of your own home. For excellent PC deals, you can check out fierce PC.