Using Games to Relax: Looking Forward to Days Off

For the past month, I’ve been doing an experiment of writing 90 blog posts in 30 days. This is in addition to writing for clients. Needless to say, I’m looking forward to being able to relax with a few games soon.

And I’m mostly talking about games that really don’t need a lot of thought or have a lot of intensity behind them.

Why are these things important?

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How I Use Games to Relax and Unwind

For many, a really good game centers around being a diversion from real life. While there are some instances where these diversions have been damaging on some kind of level, being able to step back for an hour can have a profound impact on stress levels.

I think most of us had that one game that made us call into work to grind out an entire day of gameplay. For me, it was new expansions of EverQuest back in the day.

Today, though, I don’t get to play as many games as I’d like. Mostly because I am incredibly busy or get easily sidetracked with other randomness.

Still, there are some games that I like to play to relax after a grueling day of editing, blogging, or video production. Because even working from home as a writer can quickly tap your mental state.

It takes quite a bit of mental fortitude to do what I do for a living. And being able to relax at the end of the day saves me from burning out.

Everyone Has Their Cup of Tea

Don’t get me wrong, there are days when I enjoy the PvP aspect of something or really need that fast-paced adrenaline rush. But to relax, I usually go for games that are slower or more involved than just pulling a trigger.

There’s nothing wrong with playing COD or League of Legends if that’s what helps you relax. That’s the beautiful thing about gaming…there’s something for everyone.

As long as you’re getting out of the game what you want, that’s all that really matters. Who cares if people laugh at you because you’re 45 and love playing Minecraft?

It all comes down to what you find enjoyable.

Personally, I love playing Fallout 4 simply to build bases. I have hundreds of hours in the game and have yet to get past the halfway mark for the actual storyline.

If that’s what floats your boat, who is to say you’re doing it wrong?

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What Are Some of My Favorite Games to Relax?

Being able to relax while playing certain games is really up to the individual. What I think is relaxing, you might find incredibly boring.

The trick is to really find something that can ease your tensions. Otherwise, you’re just getting stressed all over again.

So, what games do I play to relax my mind after a really long day?

Minecraft

Minecraft is probably one of my favorite de-stressing games available. I guess a big part of it is because I love to be creative and build things.

If there is one thing Minecraft has in spades, it’s building.

Though, I usually tend to go with the Sky Factor 4 mod when looking to just unwind. There’s quite a bit in the mod that I can explore without really being on a time limit.

Subnautica

Initially, I bought Subnautica because it taps into my deep-water anxiety. There are certain areas of the map that literally get my heart racing.

But if I want to relax, I usually focus more on, you guessed it, base building.

Between the visuals and the soundtrack, it’s easily among my favorite games to relax. That is as long as I don’t build a base too close to reapers.

Raft

Raft is a game that I often play on hard mode. Trying to take on two sharks at once can get pretty hairy.

What makes this one of my favorite games for relaxing is setting it to the peaceful difficulty, building, and enjoying the ambiance of the open sea.

The game has some great skyline visuals and a relaxing soundtrack that can quickly put me into a tranquil state.

Bejeweled 3

Puzzle games have always been able to help me unwind after a really screwed-up day. Bejeweled 3 is one of those where I can focus my attention on what needs to be done without worrying about the day’s events.

The endless games are more ideal for this instance as I don’t have to worry about a countdown timer and can just let the game run.

It’s another game that also has a soundtrack that is appealing to me.

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Diablo III: Seasonal Play

I love playing the seasons in Diablo III. And depending on what I’m doing in the game, I can run it while listening to a show on the other monitor. I don’t have to worry too much about what’s going on and can just hack and slash my way to relaxation.

Especially if I lower the difficulty and just go nuts.

Whether I want to do bounties, Nephalim Rifts, or just go out and slaughter demons for shits-n-giggles, I can always find a way to relax with Diablo III.

And sometimes I wind up finding items that I’ve been looking for throughout the entire season. So, sometimes mindless violence can have rewards in a game.

EverQuest II

Yes, I still pay for and play EverQuest II. Although I haven’t been able to get much time in the game lately, it’s easily one that can help me unwind.

Mostly, it’s the crafting I enjoy. If I need something that will take my attention away from the stress of the day, it’s all about making the different recipes available.

There were nights when I spent two to three hours doing nothing but crafting stuff to sell on the market. It’s a great stress reliever.

Defense Zone 3

Sometimes, putting mind-power into strategy instead of the day’s events is most beneficial. For this, I like to play Defense Zone 3.

It’s a tower defense game that can get pretty difficult at the higher levels. But for me, games like this help me relax as I try to come up with the best plan of action.

Since I can pause the game at any point, I can spend quite a bit of time trying to analyze the best method to beat the level. It easily distracts me from the stresses of working all day.

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What Games Help You Relax?

These are just a handful of games that I often play to help me de-stress. Remember, it really doesn’t matter if anyone else likes the game. It all comes down to what you find enjoyable that can deliver what you need.

What are some games that have helped you unwind after a hard day? Maybe I’ll check it out for myself.

Michael Brockbank
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Michael Brockbank

Michael developed ColoradoPlays to help various charities through his favorite pastime. Since then, the blog and Twitch channels have donated several hundred dollars to Extra Life, Geeks of Grandeur and Operation Supply Drop to name a few.

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