The 7 best video games to lose yourself in this summer


Summer is here! But amid the hot weather and long days, sometimes there’s no better feeling than heading indoors to cool down, sitting back in your favourite chair, and finding a great video game to play for a while.

So if you’re feeling physically and/or mentally exhausted from the summer, and you want something to lose yourself in Eminem-style, check out these 7 “big” immersive video games where it’s truly easy to lose track of time:

1. “The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt”


I’ll admit: At first, I found “The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt” to be too big and too ambitious for the time I had available to play video games. But earlier this summer, I started the game from scratch and decided I wouldn’t skip past all the dialogue, but actually let the game fully immerse me – and I’m so glad I did.

“The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt” is, simply, one of the best games ever made. It’s got a little bit of everything: Action, adventure, storytelling, romance, strategy, and decisions that actually affect the world you live in. And the world, by the way, is the star of the show: You can get lost just wandering around the fantastical world of “The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt,” through bustling cities, dark woods, quiet villages by the water, and more. It feels like you’re living in a medieval, Game of Thrones-type European world, and there’s nothing like it.

Available on PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.

2. “Super Mario Odyssey”


“Super Mario Odyssey” is just a joy to play. I actually played this game late last year, in the midst of a bad illness, and this game totally made me feel better. I played the game to completion with my fiancée, and neither of us ever wanted to put it down until the adventure was finally over – and then after that, we still wanted to uncover all the puzzles and secrets the game had to offer.

If you want to be immersed in a fun, cartoony, and lighthearted world starring one of the most beloved video game characters of all-time, look no further than Super Mario Odyssey. An adventure like this is perfect for the long summer months.

Available on Nintendo Switch.

3. “BioShock: The Collection”


Want to sink your teeth into some great science-fiction/horror stories? Do you like games where you can find and wield new superpowers? Then the BioShock games are for you – and thankfully, you can buy all three of them in a package that’s been remastered for current-gen consoles, called “BioShock: The Collection.”

“Bioshock: The Collection” includes “BioShock” (the 2007 classic); “BioShock 2” (from 2010); and “BioShock Infinite” (from 2013). In the first two games, you’re surviving the underwater city of Rapture; in the final game, you’ll be traversing the airborne city of Columbia. All three games drip with mood and atmosphere, feel great to play, and look even better than they did years ago thanks to the visual improvements in the remastered package. If you’ve never played a BioShock game before, or it’s been a while, it’s time to jump in.

Available on PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.

4. “Dark Souls: Remastered”


Most people describe “Dark Souls” as one of the hardest games ever made. That’s true! But it’s not hard to the point of unfair – it’s challenging, but in the best way possible. And that’s why it’s one of the most beloved games ever made.

When you die – which happens a lot in “Dark Souls” – it’s usually your own fault. You rushed into a group of enemies, or you didn’t see that trap. But the beauty of “Dark Souls” is that you learn from your mistakes, over and over again, until you overcome them. It’s a rare game that teaches you about perseverance just by playing it. And what’s more, this game has finally been remastered for current-gen consoles.

Available for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and soon Nintendo Switch.

(Note: If you enjoy “Dark Souls,” I also highly recommend “Dark Souls 3” and “Bloodborne,” with the note that the latter game is for PlayStation 4 only. I’d argue it’s worth buying a PlayStation 4 for “Bloodborne” alone.)

5. “The Witness”


I’ll admit it: I’ve still never finished “The Witness.” But it’s a perfect game for the long summer: It’s gorgeous, big, and full of puzzles that will keep you busy for hours.

Each puzzle is completely different from the last, but many puzzles build upon each other in clever ways. And you’re solving these puzzles in one of the most gorgeous settings ever created in a game. There’s nothing quite like it.

6. “Dragon Age: Inquisition”


I had never played any of the previous “Dragon Age” games, but I loved playing “Dragon Age: Inquisition” – even though I admittedly never finished the game.

It’s been a while since I’ve played it, but here’s what you need to know: The game is absolutely massive, gorgeous, and filled with things to do; you create your own character, The Inquisitor, to your liking, and can choose which companions join you on quests and journeys; you have a variety of weapons and magic at your disposal; and it’s a role-playing game, which means you’ll be interacting with many characters and making tough decisions. You’ll even have a chance to romance certain characters.

You may never run out of things to do in “Dragon Age: Inquisition.”

Available on PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One

7. “The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild”


The Legend of Zelda franchise has been around for over 20 years – and during that time, it’s pumped out some of the best games ever created. “A Link To The Past” and “Ocarina of Time,” in particular, have been called some of the greatest games of their generations.

Considering the impressive pedigree of Zelda games, Nintendo was faced with sky-high expectations for “Breath of the Wild,” its first open-world Zelda game and the marquee launch title for the Nintendo Switch in March 2017 – and it somehow managed to surpass those expectations.

“Breath of the Wild” is one of the best video games ever made. It’s easy to pick up, beautiful, and filled with unforgettable characters and adventures. More importantly, it moves the entire video-game medium forward in several important ways: It provides an area where everything you see can be explored, and the game’s physics provide endless opportunities for strategising and replayability. It’s quite easy to lose yourself – and track of time – in “Breath of the Wild.”

Available on Nintendo Switch.