Most games tend to be filled with exciting action, tense moments, or thought-provoking stories. These are all great things, but sometimes, it’s nice to just sit back and relax without thinking too much. There are plenty of games that are designed to be relaxing and Xbox One is home to plenty of them. Here are some of our favorites.
Cities: Skylines is an excellent city-building game designed with simple, straightforward systems in mind. It does get more difficult as you go, but it never becomes frustrating or tedious. Additionally, there are options to simply give yourself unlimited resources, meaning you can make your dream city without any strategy at all.
Abzu is a calm and mellow exploration game where you dive through the depths of the sea and observe various forms of aquatic wildlife. Complete with beautiful visuals and authentic sound effects, Abzu is truly excellent.
Unravel is a simple puzzle game about a character named Yarny, who completes challenges with his unraveling body. It has easy mechanics and the puzzles aren’t too hard, making it a great option if you want a relaxing puzzle game.
Minecraft is a truly massive game that gives you procedurally generated worlds to play around in, and you have complete freedom to build whatever your mind can dream of. Not even the sky is the limit.
Aer: Memories of Old is a unique game that allows you to transform into a bird and fly through the skies, getting a bird’s-eye view of the gorgeous and strange lands below you.
RiME is a game about exploring a vast open-world style island at your own pace, with some puzzles dotted around the landscape. It’s visually gorgeous and it has plenty to discover, so it’s definitely worth a shot.
Dear Esther is a walking simulator in which you explore a desolate island filled with stunning visuals and an interesting story that you experience through music and narration. It’s more somber than the other games on this list, but just looking at the landscape is relaxing enough.
Stardew Valley is an addicting game where you build up and manage your own farm, complete with buildings, animals, and crops. It’s not too hard to play, and there’s dozens of activities to do, meaning Stardew Valley can potentially take over your life.
If driving is your thing, then Forza Horizon 4 is a must have. In it, you can drive throughout a seemingly-endless landscape and experience a dynamic world with weather patterns and seasonal climate changes.
Every title in this roundup is superb, but my personal favorite is Abzu because of how beautiful its underwater world is. No Man’s Sky is fantastic for people who love to discover secrets, and Stardew Valley is one of the most fun games in existence for passing the time.
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