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#1 Posted by NTM (11749 posts) -

Are there any games that you put into your console (or PC) just to walk around at a relatively slow pace to soak in the atmosphere and relax? While it's not the only, nor necessarily my favorite, one of the most recent games was Red Dead Redemption 2 which I decided to go back to. I didn't do a lot of running, and when on my horse I didn't do a lot of galloping, it was just holding the stick forward and having the character walk forward, taking in the views and the sounds of waterfalls, leaves rustling; trees cracking; rainstorms, and all the other things like its city life with carriages roaming about, people talking, church bell ringing, and the sound of theatre.

Another is Spider-Man which I really enjoy. I'm not sure if I'm in the minority or not, but I actually find city life sounds kind of relaxing (at least from a distance). The swinging is a whole lot of fun in the game, but I also really enjoy just standing atop buildings (like the Freedom Tower or Avengers tower) and watching the ferries on the Hudson River, the planes and helicopters fly around, the skyline and just the city in general. Then there's also getting onto the ground and walking around; the detail Insomniac put into the stuff you do below what takes up a lot of your time in the game, which is swinging, is great. Are there games you have which you go to for that kind of thing? I think a new game might be Days Gone; I may end up coming back to it at some point after I've finished it.

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#2 Posted by llyama (9 posts) -

The Witcher 3 is still a joy to just run around in, especially the Blood and Wine expansion area. I like to just get on my horse and let it auto path me at a slow trot and take in the sights. Towards the end I stopped using fast travel altogether as travelling was so enjoyable.

Other than that the GTA games are always fun just to drive around or walk around in. I actually prefer GTA4 for that, I think the world reacts a bit more than GTA5.

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#3 Edited by fauxical (68 posts) -

A Switch game called Rime. I got it as a gift last year and it's beautiful to look and has lovely locations but it's a chore of a game to play. I would want to play it more because it looks great but sadly it doesn't play well enough.

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#4 Posted by isomeri (3119 posts) -

I've spent a lot of time in the Forza Horizon games just aimlessly driving around and maybe not even doing any actual racing. It can be relaxing in the same way as a long walk or bike ride in a rural area.

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#5 Posted by FrodoBaggins (2049 posts) -

@fauxical: What!?!? Rime is great, keep going with it and the pay off is huge.

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#6 Posted by FacelessVixen (2577 posts) -

Dragon's Dogma came to mind, but this is basically how I played both Skyrim and Fallout 4 for 900 hours each.

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#7 Posted by arcadefire (29 posts) -

Dragon's Dogma came to mind, but this is basically how I played both Skyrim and Fallout 4 for 900 hours each.

Yeah I sunk over 500 hrs into Skyrim just basically playing like this.

Probably pretty close with the Witcher 3 as well but I kinda dropped off hard from that game.

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#8 Posted by acharlie1377 (117 posts) -

Breath of the Wild is easily the game that fits that the most for me. I always anjoy climbing a mountain or gliding into a canyon mot for another side quest, but because I just want to see what's there.

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#9 Posted by Teddie (2138 posts) -

I enjoy going back to Yakuza 6 every few months to chip away at the side content, mostly because of the laid back, sleepy atmosphere in Onomichi.

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#11 Posted by Nick (1039 posts) -

The Elder Scrolls games, Breath of the Wild, and Minecraft have been this type of game for me.

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#12 Posted by Haz (420 posts) -

Breath of the Wild. I can do that for hours in that game, it’s always relaxing and a joy.

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#13 Posted by warius87 (12 posts) -

Red Dead Redemption 2, Fallout and The Elder Scrolls series. I also love exploring smaller, more interior worlds, such as Bioshock, Prey and the Resident Evil series.

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#14 Posted by nutter (2110 posts) -

Witcher 3, once you’re leveled enough to not wander into a death trap...

Crackdown is my go-to. Level up so combat is a breeze and go looking for orb.

I’ve been digging the Krypt in MK11. You’re basically exploring Shang Tsung’s island from MK1. It’s super cool to see it realized and explorable. It makes me want to see some crazy MK1 remake in the vein of Shenmue.

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#15 Posted by notnert427 (2207 posts) -

@isomeri said:

I've spent a lot of time in the Forza Horizon games just aimlessly driving around and maybe not even doing any actual racing. It can be relaxing in the same way as a long walk or bike ride in a rural area.

This. I do the same often to wind down. It's really relaxing to just drive around and occasionally take some photos. With how amazing Horizon 4 looks in 4K HDR, it's a good time.

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#16 Posted by NTM (11749 posts) -

@notnert427: Yeah, I generally don't get into car/racing games, but I've thought about getting Forza Horizon 4 largely for that reason. While not solely a driving game, the game that has driving in it that I enjoy most is GTA 5 from a relaxing perspective.

@facelessvixen: Hmm, I've always kind of wanted to play Dragon's Dogma, but didn't get it. I don't know, what's the variety like in the environments?

@fauxical: It's not just a Switch game, it's also on the PS4 and Xbox One. I beat it on the PS4 and really enjoyed it (I also played several minutes of it on the Xbox One). Yeah, it has a nice set of environments though it's not all cheery. My biggest issue with the game is the frame rate. Also, the story goes in a different way than initially expected. From what I remember, the farther you get along into it the more you're predicting what's happening. It's kind of cool. Some say it doesn't earn the ending it has, but it was fine.

---

The Witcher 3 definitely, though I've put around 600 hours into it (since I went through it on the PS4 and Xbox One) so I kind of got what I wanted out of it. That said, I do still play it from time to time (just did a few weeks ago, comparing the Xbox One X version to the PS4 Pro version).

Oh, another one for me is the first The Division. I would not have put about 150 - 200 hours into from the time of its release up to the game's sequel if I hadn't liked its wintry New York setting as much as I did. I love the game's soundtrack, and the gameplay is fun to me, but its the setting that had me coming back.

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#17 Posted by fisk0 (6867 posts) -

That's essentially how I play all open world games, and if they won't let me play them like that, I skip them.

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#18 Posted by Warren2007 (82 posts) -

Proteus for the noises, look and stuff that happens when animals are nearby is delightful.

Race the Sun gives me that 'I just want to zip along' feeling. Simple goal and just keep going.

Abyss Odyssey I think is Ace Teams finest work. Strange as anything but a solid (if not as ambitious as Xenoclash) combat system. It makes no difference if I fail, the feature I use most, and I never seem to get bored of just looking at it.

Occasionally, I will go back to Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call for cutesy nostalgia business but my hands are too decrepit now to play much of it.

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#19 Posted by BoboBones (261 posts) -

Assassins Creed Odyssey

The Witness

The Witcher 3

Forza Horizon 2/4

GTA V

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#20 Posted by notnert427 (2207 posts) -

@ntm said:

@notnert427: Yeah, I generally don't get into car/racing games, but I've thought about getting Forza Horizon 4 largely for that reason. While not solely a driving game, the game that has driving in it that I enjoy most is GTA 5 from a relaxing perspective.

I could not recommend it more. It's basically a perfect game, especially for this purpose. The seasons add even more vistas. It's so good. Buy it.

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#21 Posted by stantongrouse (196 posts) -

I'm definitely a wanderer in open world games, it's how I'm meandering through AC: Origins and Breath of the Wild right now. In the past though Red Dead Redemption, GTA Vice City and Fallout New Vegas probably clocked up the most wandering time for me.

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#22 Posted by FacelessVixen (2577 posts) -

@ntm said:

@facelessvixen: Hmm, I've always kind of wanted to play Dragon's Dogma, but didn't get it. I don't know, what's the variety like in the environments?

Nothing too far from the usual environments that come to mind when thinking about fantasy really. You've got your fields, forests, fortresses, caves, catacombs, castles, colosseums, cliffs, cathedrals, camps, towns, beaches, and some other-worldly locations here or there.

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#23 Posted by Saber (4 posts) -

Breath of the Wild. It's therapeutic. My video game happy place.

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#24 Edited by JohnyMyko (1869 posts) -

I always liked the idea of having a game with a world to aimlessly roam around and relax after a day of work, but for some reason almost all the time I’ve tried to do that, it never worked for me as I intended. Maybe it’s the lack of a narrative to follow since I usually prefer games that rely on a story.

However, there’s been a few exceptions lately:

Red Dead Redemption 2 has been the game that did it for me. I never felt so good and relaxed by just slowly traveling around and enjoying the view. Even gameplay mechanics I always hated end up being enjoyable for me. I really like to roam around, maybe hunt something, cook and sleep and carry on with my journey. Maybe it’s because the world is detailed and full of random events, maybe it’s because the idea of Arthur traveling makes sense in a narrative stand point. All I know is that it works for me.

Spider-Man also worked for me sometimes. Swinging around, or just standing on top buildings looking at the city felt so good in that game.

GTA V was another one that worked for a while. I would often just drive around listening to the radio and often stoping to take pictures, just going through the city looking for good photo opportunities. Most of my shots were awful, but the whole process was super relaxing.

But RDR2 was definitely the one that did it for me like never before. I’m pretty sure I have more game time exploring and relaxing than progressing through the story, which never happened to me. I’m still in chapter 3 after playing it for at least two months.

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#25 Posted by FinalDasa (3188 posts) -

Minecraft still gives me these vibes. It's nice to just wander around, get inspiration from the world about what to build, and still have the option to get up and start something completely new and different.

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#26 Posted by NTM (11749 posts) -

@johnymyko: I think in the case of RDR2, and what most open world games should strive for especially when you're done with the main storyline and all the side tasks you can think of, is put in a bunch of discoverable things that you had no idea was a thing. There is a lot of that in RDR2. It helps so you feel like there may be something new that you, and maybe no one else has discovered. In playing RDR2 last time, I discovered a ghost train that I've never seen. I was on my horse so I was hurrying out of the way off of the tracks only to turn around and see that it was only a ghostly figure. I looked it up and it's something that only happens at a certain time and only in certain places. On my go through when it came out, I also came upon a cabin in the middle of the night that had dead people in it; I read something and all of a sudden the cabin lights up and I look above me to see a UFO. That's just some examples, but there are many more that you can find in the game. That's also something that The Witcher 3 did to some degree where the map wouldn't give you all the exclamation marked locations in the game so you'd actually have to come upon them by roaming the world. I put those in spoiler tags if you don't want to know. It has nothing to do with the main or side stories.

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#27 Posted by zombiepenguin9 (758 posts) -

I've repeatedly fired up games in the Elder Scrolls series just to wander around for a while. More recently it was the Witcher 3 that scratched that itch. I'm not usually interested in clearing icons off of a map, but the weather, lighting, and sounds made the world in the Witcher 3 so enjoyable and realistic feeling that I'd happily roam around from one question mark to another.

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#28 Posted by Sahalarious (770 posts) -

Breath of the Wild for sure, especially with them doing away with the auto populated map, i was truly exploring. Now weirdly enough Days Gone, that game does have its share of problems but one thing I dont hear enough about is how gorgeous that world is, the rain and mud and trees all come together with the very limited scope of revealed areas on the map.

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#29 Posted by FacelessVixen (2577 posts) -

Final Fantasy XIV is also becoming that game for me now, though mainly because it's new to me. New stuff is fun to explore.

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#30 Posted by someoneproud (562 posts) -

Just Cause 3 for me. I find gliding around Mediterranean countryside sooo relaxing, don't care too much for the rest of the game tbh but I go back to it a lot just for the gliding.

I'll also echo the Yakuza series, replay them pretty much annually and it feels like revisiting a childhood haunt or something every time I return to Kamurocho.

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#31 Edited by Blu3V3nom07 (4497 posts) -

Grow Up, Dragon Quest Heroes 2, Gears of War, Halo , SSX