Today’s a public holiday. And while that’s great for gatherings and having a good time with friends, sometimes you just want the day to yourself. That’s a great situation for playing video games – but sometimes you want something that can be done and dusted in a single day.
Fortunately, there’s plenty of great smaller titles that you can enjoy in a single sitting. So if you’re looking for a game you can start and finish in a single day, here’s 9 titles worth looking at.
Day of the Tentacle: Remastered (PC, Mac, Linux, PS4, Vita)
If you’re looking after a classic point-and-click that will keep you going for five or so hours, Day of the Tentacle: Remastered is a great choice. Even when played at a leisurely pace, the iconic LucasArts adventure – perhaps their best, even more so than Grim Fandango or the Monkey Island series – should only take gamers less than six hours.
It’s a great title to start and finish a day with. There’s plenty of humour throughout, and the remaster is an excellent homage to the original: the game has a 98% rating on Steam from nearly 1200 reviews.
If you like stealth puzzles, but you don’t want to be sneaking around for weeks on end, Gunpoint is worth a shot. It’s cheap – $US10 at most, but the game regularly goes on sale – and it’s also beloved on Steam, with a 97% rating from over 8800 reviews.
Created by Tom Francis in his spare time (Francis was working a day job as a writer for PC Gamer, although the success of Gunpoint encouraged him to go full time), Kirk found the game was fun, well written and didn’t overstay its welcome. “Like the diminutive buildings you’ll spend the game circumnavigating and infiltrating, Gunpoint itself is an intricate array of interlocking circuits and gears, finely tuned and waiting for you to bend it to your will,” Kirk wrote in his review.
A must for stealth fans, or people who like games that only last for a few hours at most. Perfect for a public holiday.
After a shooter that last only a couple of hours? SUPERHOT is perfect: hell, you can have a sausage sandwich for lunch and be done with the most innovative shooter in years by dinner. (If the last bit seems a weird thing to say, you’ll understand after playing the game.)
Now that it’s been out for almost a year, it’s not hard to get SUPERHOT reasonably cheaply. It’s well worth at least one playthrough at the full $US20 price though, particularly if you’re looking for something to test out those fancy Rift touch controllers.
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare/Modern Warfare Remastered
Just want to shoot something for an evening? I present the old faithful: the original Modern Warfare campaign. It’s quick, has plenty of great missions and moments, requires little to no brainpower, and can be done and dusted in four to five hours. Hell, you can be done quicker if you take the speedrunners approach. And once you’re done, there’s always multiplayer: the original COD4 still has plenty of modded servers, although you’ll have more luck playing MWR on consoles.
To The Moon
Want to have an evening of feels? To The Moon is a simple story about two doctors trying to fulfil an ageing patients final wish before he dies: he wants to go to the moon, a journey that will take around four hours real-world time.
That’s all I’ll say. Chances are you’ve played this already – it’s been one of the more outstanding point-and-click adventures of the last five years – but if you haven’t and you have the patience for point-and-click interfaces, you absolutely should. It’s beautiful.
Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes
But if you’re after something that’s a bit faster paced with a ton more action, Ground Zeroes might be just the treat. You can blast through the main story in under two hours, or you can take a slower approach with all of the extra content. You can be done with Ground Zeroes in a day either way, although a full 100% playthrough might take you a few days.
Regardless, Ground Zeroes is a treat for any fan of Kojima. It’s also a nice precursor to Metal Gear Solid 5 proper, and it’s currently available on PSN for about the price of a coffee. Go get it.
D4: Dark Dreams Don’t Die
It’s a real shame that the insane arc of D4 will never be completed, but that doesn’t mean Swery’s second adventure after Deadly Premonition isn’t worth playing. It is, in a word, bizarre. Just read the interview Swery did with Patrick two years ago. He’s a character.
And that’s what makes D4 so charming: it’s character. You really won’t play anything else like it, but then there really isn’t anyone else in gaming quite like Swery.
The Typing of the Dead: Overkill
Who said typing can’t be fun? That’s the premise behind The Typing of the Dead, a remake of the classic House of the Dead arcade games where your words become your bullets. Literally. Screw up the typing and you’re instant zombie bait.
There’s a surprising amount of content – it’ll take you around four hours to work through the base game. And then there’s DLC to consider, including the Filth package that makes the mutant outbreak a tad more immature. Don’t overlook Typing of the Dead: it’s a genuinely good way to spend a few hours.
If you’re after something relaxing with some good writing, it’s hard to go past the Jules Verne-inspired choose your own adventure that is 80 Days. You play as Phileas Fogg’s butler as you set out around the world, ideally within 80 days.
The strategy comes from what paths you take, how you respond to encounters along the way, and how you prepare for the journey ahead. But most of the enjoyment is really in the artstyle and the writing. It’s a great adaption of the original novel and it’s a lovely way to spend an hour or two. The Steam version is available for $US10, although you can get a version that’s just as satisfying on Android or iOS.
What are your favourite games you can play from start to finish in a single day?