Up For Debate - What Are Your Favourite Relaxing Games?

Written by Jon Sutton on Sun, Oct 15, 2017 5:00 PM
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While we all love a good session of CSGO, Rocket League, PUBG or Rainbow 6: Siege, sometimes it's good to avoid the intensities of warfare or the anguish of intense competition and just settle down with a relaxing experience. One in which the pressures of competition, and life, just melt away.

I’ve been plugging away on Stardew Valley recently and it’s scratched an itch that’s been haunting me for a while. At some point most evenings I find myself cursing a latest Rocket League defeat, and it’s been really rather pleasant to escape to the country, pootling about my farm, watering the crops and heading into town for the Egg Festival. On paper, it’s a bit boring, but in practice it’s an absolute joy to gradually peel back the layers, improving the farm and increasing automation with no time restraints and most importantly of all - no pressure.

The process brought back to me the idea that it’s important we have all these other games that cater to all sorts of needs. Games don’t need to just be about killing, or challenge, or competition. Most of us don’t watch movies to get beaten down repeatedly, we usually watch them purely to enjoy them. That’s not to say there isn’t fun in a challenge, but merely that the two styles can co-exist.

I was also talking to a GD’er here, bluej511, who’s dipped into his own farming world for the first time with Farming Simulator 17. At its core, it’s a game about hard work, but like Stardew Valley there’s something to the rhythm of sow, grow, sell, repeat that soothes rather than simmers. It’s the ultimate escapism for the many of us who are perhaps cramped up in cities or sat indoors as the rain pours outside.

In the interests of getting hold of more of these sorts of games, I’d love to know the games you like to relax to, the experiences that help keep your pressure low between those bouts of Dark Souls 3. So which games do you find the most relaxing? Do you even like chilled out games, or are you always on the hunt for the next adrenaline rush? Let us know!

Our favourite comments:

Project CARS nurburgring

I don't actually own the game but when im bored or stressed or something I get my steam controller, load up the pagani edition of the game and play on the nurburgring, im pretty bad at the game and always end up last so thats probably why its relaxing for me, but as long as i enjoy it then who cares?

SomeRandomGuy128

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12:40 Oct-18-2017

Atm, it's SW KoTOR.

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21:44 Oct-17-2017

For me it's american truck simulator, xplane 11, tabletop simulator and planet coaster.

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16:04 Oct-17-2017

World of Warcraft. When I just wanna play something, without having to actually pay attention, WoW has been my go to game for years. I stopped playing hardcore during WoD, and so for the past couple of years I've played very casually; doing some quick LFR or WQs/dailies for a couple of hours every couple of days makes me relaxed. 7D2D used to be a big relaxing game for me. I would log on for a few hours and just build/scavenge stuff.

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05:22 Oct-17-2017

minecraft was relaxing till that bomb thing pops out

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02:34 Oct-17-2017

Up For Debate - What Are Your Favourite Relaxing Games? LoL, mine? Well, just a normal flash game, Ganguro Girl flash game.

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23:05 Oct-16-2017

Cities skyline is very soothing once town starts to settle.

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22:19 Oct-16-2017

For me it's Euro Truck Simulator 2. Dunno what it is about driving huge trucks around delivering goods but I find it so relaxing.

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21:40 Oct-16-2017

Hunter - Call of the Wild, American Truck Sim, FSX, Sometimes Ship Simulator. These do it for me...

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22:42 Oct-16-2017

I want that first game. It looks very nice.

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18:08 Oct-16-2017

garden dreams

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11:38 Oct-16-2017

tetris

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10:52 Oct-16-2017

Stick Fight: The Game, because it's simple, very funny and can play it with friends.

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10:39 Oct-16-2017

minesweeper

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09:56 Oct-16-2017

Made it into an article, awesome haha. I'd say for me, with some good music, Farming Sim, Euro/American truck sim AND Car Mechanic Simulator 15/18. Something about those games is just serene peacefulness. Rust and Cities skylines can also be peaceful if done right.
We're talking about full on relaxation, games that can put you to sleep bot because they're boring but because they put you in a total trance. I nod off often playing FS17 and ETS/ATS. A Two Steps From Hell playlist and it's heaven.

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09:44 Oct-16-2017

Batman and Splinter Cell

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07:06 Oct-16-2017

Euro Truck Simulator 2 and American Truck Simulator. Played with a decent wheel these two games become the ultimate therapy session.

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07:07 Oct-16-2017

Also surprisingly GTA San Andreas, IV and V also have a calming effect on you.

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10:05 Oct-16-2017

Letting out the inner rage without going on a real life killing spree ;)

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14:44 Oct-16-2017

thats why i play Doom

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17:32 Oct-19-2017

I was thinking about some nice tunes and a good car going on a roadtrip and enjoying the detail of the world but... Killing spree works too :D

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19:15 Nov-15-2017

KDST in the background :)

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09:34 Oct-16-2017

Yup, ETS2/ATS + wheel + some good music/podcast and you´re set for a relaxing gaming session :)

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21:22 Oct-16-2017

Even with keyboard it's enjoyable, a bad steering wheel kind of bores me though. I have the trustmaster gt experience wheel, pretty old, but it does the job. I'm too lazy to setup everything to play for 1h, so I use my keyboard

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22:43 Oct-16-2017

Try steering with the mouse. I don't have a wheel so mouse steering is the best I can get in terms of precise steering. I even play F1 by steering with the mouse although that game doesn't have a built in setting for it while truck simulator does.

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16:59 Oct-17-2017

Hmm, I use the mouse to look around, steering with the mouse is kind of weird. I use the kb to control driving, kind of binary, but it does the job (still hate it that it takes ages to turn the wheel at high speeds using a kb, it goes faster with a steering wheel)

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06:02 Oct-16-2017

Chicken Invaders
Candy Crush

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02:42 Oct-16-2017

Stranded Deep


Very relaxing cruising between lush tropical islands with the only care being the numerous sharks waiting to devour you. :)

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02:02 Oct-16-2017

i fire up a racing sim and maximize the dynamics of a car; suspension, corner weighting and gearing (with and without aero).
between that, absolute drift, turbo dismount, trackmania, i can find something to relax and drift out of the real world.

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01:20 Oct-16-2017

I don't play video games to relax. However, when I do want a game to just zone out in, I usually pick either Melody's Escape, the Spyro original trilogy, or Hatred.

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00:35 Oct-16-2017

GTA V and The Witcher 3. I used to really like The Tomorrow Children on PS4, it was great for playing right before bed or when stoned. They're shutting that down though I don't have a PS4 anymore. Also, shameless plug. I finished my PC finally and the build for pcpartpicker is below.


https://pcpartpicker.com/b/Hp3bt6

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