At The Virtual Viking we are here to champion the casual gamers. So it seemed right…NO, it seemed our DUTY to kick off our Special Features with a list of games for all the Non-Gamers out there. The everyday people. This is for you….
Octodad: Dadliest Catch
An idea for a game that must have been born out of some repressed childhood nightmares, or with the help of some cheeky illegal substances. How can I best describe this? You play an octopus (cool). Who wants to be a person (okay, who doesn’t?). So he dresses in a suit, finds a family and convinces them that he’s a man (…right…). Who works, and shops, and does chores, and everything (…okay, you’ve lost me…)
As you can imagine, it’s not easy being an octopus in human disguise. The logistics must be a nightmare. And that is the premise of this comedic, physics-based game. The hilarity comes from not being able to control Octodad as he awkwardly struggles his way through all the jobs that we should probably be doing instead of playing video games. There’s no need to learn complex controls, or have lightning reflexes, to appreciate this indie gem, just grab some mates, some beers and let comedy commence.
Unchartered 4 is a shining example of how modern games are becoming increasingly like interactive cinema. Naughty Dog’s other success, The Last Of Us, tells a story better (in my opinion) however, for the overall experience, casual gamers can’t go wrong with Unchartered 4. You have puzzling, incredible landscapes and breathtaking cut-scenes; you have action, comedy, drama and you have Nathan-fucking-Drake! Granted the difficulty may be an issue for some gamers, but with the correct difficulty setting applied I challenge anyone to give Unchartered 4 a go and not have a good time.
Any Lego Game
I. Love. Lego. But that’s not why these games have made it to the list. Lego regularly release games parodying popular franchises, but with their own little comedy twists. As a fully grown adult you know you shouldn’t be playing it (you may have even grabbed a random nearby child when buying it just to save face, no shame), but it’s just so bright and colourful and… WAIT I GET TO PLAY AS HULK NO FRICKIN’ WAY!
Ahem, anyway, the controls are simple, you can’t really die AND it’s one of the few games around these days that supports couch co-op. Oh, and you get to play as superheroes or Jack Sparrow or even Jurassic Park dinosaurs, so, yeah.
For the puzzlers out there L.A Noire is a solid choice. The beauty of this game is that it has an emphasis on solving cases using patience and wits rather than blowing everything up and arresting whoever’s left alive (we’re looking at you Battlefield:Hardline). And let’s not forget the facial animation technology, which was revolutionary at the time and to be honest is still better than a lot of modern releases. Rockstar got the stylised setting spot on with this game and on the rare occasions where you have shit go down in L.A. town, if you can’t handle it then no worries, they have your back. ‘We noticed you’ve died quite a few times there, urm, would you like to skip this part of the game and go back to the sit-down-at-a-desky part?’ Why, yes Rockstar. Yes I would. Aren’t you a sweetie?
What better genre for a casual gamer than a side-scrolling adventure puzzle platformer. Why The Cave though? Because it’s clever and funny. Deal with it.
In all seriousness though there are many games of its genre that could replace The Cave on this list, but we believe that the dark yet humorous narration and the interesting level and puzzle design is what sets it apart and will keep the attention of even the most modest gamer. Not to mention the fact that on each play through you will only see the story of 3 of 7 characters, which come the end of the game will have you jumping straight back in with another unlucky trio without hesitation.