The best addictive games of 2020
Have you ever had loads of free time but with nothing to do? There’s a lot of that going around this year and it’s the perfect excuse to take a vacation on our couches and get immersed in – or maybe obsessed with – a virtual world.
Warning: These games might keep you playing for “five more minutes” that turn into “five more hours.” Don’t forget to sleep.
What’s really the most addicting game to be released in 2020? The answer is Nintendo’s Animal Crossing. When it was released in April, it quickly became Switch’s top selling game debut of all time in Japan, and could potentially overtake legendary franchises like Pokemon, Mario and Zelda worldwide. It’s all about building a world in a tropical paradise and it’s hard to get more escapist than that.
Looks like a kids game but don’t be fooled
If there’s one word used to describe Animal Crossing in nearly every review, it’s customisability. You can build your home and fill it with furniture, dig – or fill in – your own lake and wear a different outfit every day. You can even influence the characters that live on your island. People have found themselves at war with a bear named Pinky because they kept talking about progressive rock and was always mean to her friend Martha. Eventually, they took the hint and departed for distant shores to be replaced by a cool cat wearing a red helmet and sweatbands.
Because we live in a post-Minecraft world, you’ll need to collect a lot of resources, so kick every tree and rock you come across for items you can use to build things or sell for Bells (the local fiat currency). And check in every day with Animal Crossing’s resident talking raccoon, Tom Nook, at the Nook Stop to collect Nook Miles.
It’s not the kind of game to have an end, so with seasonal changes and the constant new content you will always have “one more thing” to do on your island paradise.
Street Fighter II: The World Warrior Slot
Every once in a while, a game changes everything you thought you could do with a genre and Street Fighter II is that for slot machines. This 90s throwback is brought to us by NetEnt, who created the legendary Hall of Gods Slot responsible for a gigantic €7.5 million payout in 2017, one of the highest in history.
The merchandising machine carries on rolling
Before stepping into the ring, you must choose your character. The RTP varies from 96.02% to 96.08% depending on your choice. Street Fighter II has no pay lines. Repeat: No pay lines. The mechanics have more in common with an addicting puzzle game than a traditional slot. It’s played on a 5×5 grid format with a new grid dropping from the sky with every spin. Payouts occur when four or more matching symbols connect and depending on which symbols either you or your opponent will take damage. After every payout, new symbols slide into the grid and can cause a chain reaction that will keep the spin going and payouts coming.
If you lose the round there’s no penalty, and you’re treated to a classic Car Smash Bonus Game. But if you win, you’re awarded Beat the Boss Free Spins, where things get really fun. You don’t receive a set number of free spins per se but spin continuously until your character is “KO’d.” The multiplier increases with each boss: Balrog(x2), Vega(x3), Sagat(x5) and M. Bison(x10). Players have never had as much fun with a slot than cheering characters on to victory through a frenzy of payouts and multipliers.
The best twist is the Insert Coin feature. If you lose during free spins, you have the option to “continue” by giving up a hefty portion of your winnings. Whether you give it your all or live to fight another day, make your choice wisely.
Take your time in choosing which game you want to try. There are always new options, but it may be safer sticking to well-known brands.
Ori and the Will of the Wisps
If you’d like a more traditional escape, Ori and the Will of the Wisps will transport you to a magical forest filled with life and beauty and put you in control of a wordless protagonist, who is so adorable he literally glows.
The follow-up to Ori and the Blind Forest, Ori and the Will of the Wisps is a faithful sequel that takes everything from the previous game and makes it bigger. The scope of the world, intuitive gameplay, vibrant art, crashing musical score and emotional resonance have all been dialled up for the sequel to make perhaps the most gorgeous overall game ever.
Beyond the compelling ambience and story, Ori is on the list of addicting games because it’s a Metroidvania style game where you’ll gradually explore the lush environs and collect power-ups and abilities to gain access to new interconnected areas of the forest. There will always be one more boss to fight, puzzle to solve or secret to uncover. Or you can just turn on the game to immerse yourself watching Ori zoom through the forest. He’s very fast.
The editorial unit