ByCryss Leonhart, writer at Creators.co
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Cryss Leonhart

If the world were coming to an end, I probably wouldn't notice if I was playing the wonderfully addictive and soothing Stardew Valley—unless my PC fell through a crack in the earth. Whether we're bogged down by work, dealing with personal issues or simply in need a break from our usual repertoire of competitive games, there are a number of that are great for when you want to kick back and relax, regardless of how the planet's doing.

The 8 Games To Play When You Need A Relaxing Break From The Real World

There's a definite shorts of murdering and killing things in these games - [Credit: Giant Squid]
There's a definite shorts of murdering and killing things in these games - [Credit: Giant Squid]

Occasionally we all need a break from killing things (not in our daily lives, I hope). If you're trying to unwind after a long day, or recover from the loss of some tough Overwatch matches, here are some great games for making you forget about the stresses beyond the windows.

1. 'RuneScape'

RuneScape is very pretty for a game that's a decade and a half old - [Credit: Jagex]
RuneScape is very pretty for a game that's a decade and a half old - [Credit: Jagex]
  • Developer: Jagex
  • Platform: PC
  • Price: Free / Subscription

RuneScape might be 15 years old, but its unapologetically old-school design makes it worth playing to this day. Upon entering the world, you're given complete control over your character. Whether you want to go questing, leveling or battling, you're free to do so at your pace.

This freedom is retained throughout the entire experience—you can start quests and take a breather at any point, free to return later. With Jagex creating a steady stream of new content, including seasonal events and a recent visual overhaul, there's no better time to jump into the world of Gielinor.

2. 'Stardew Valley'

I mentioned it before, I'll mention it again - [Credit: Concerned Ape]
I mentioned it before, I'll mention it again - [Credit: Concerned Ape]
  • Developer: Concerned Ape
  • Platform: PC
  • Price: 13,99€ (Steam)

Stardew Valley has a great deal in common with RuneScape—at least in terms of my appraisals—ultimately allowing players to tackle the exploration of the rural village they inhabit at their own pace. It takes the Harvest Moon formula that it's loosely based upon and grounds it much more firmly in reality.

Granted you can still head off to the caves and kill monsters, but it's not the focus of the game, which is building your farm and getting to know the locals around you. Though I hope you're prepared to lose a lot of time in the valley.

3. 'Everybody's Gone To The Rapture'

  • Developer: The Chinese Room
  • Platforms: PC, PS4
  • Price: 19,99€ (Steam)

It's the end of the world as we know it, but in Everybody's Gone To The Rapture, you'll certainly feel fine. Exploration is the name of the game—well it's not, but you get my drift—as you explore one of the most fully fleshed out worlds in recent memory.

From the outset, the mysterious story pulls you in, encouraging you to build theories as to what has befallen this English village. Despite the lack of human characters, the fantastic audio diaries and haunting hymnal soundtrack make this a must play for fans of exploration narratives. A soothing walk through the English countryside is perfect for a relaxing time!

4. 'Audiosurf'

Audiosurf will play with any song on your PC - [Credit: Sylan Fitterer]
Audiosurf will play with any song on your PC - [Credit: Sylan Fitterer]
  • Developer: Dylan Fitterer
  • Platform: PC
  • Price: 9,99€ (Steam)

What about mixing music and gaming? Audiosurf allows you to import your own music and generates a driving course, which you'll pilot a futuristic car down, based on that track.

The goal isn't to hit every block like in Guitar Hero, but rather chain color combos and nab power ups to race to the high scores. Depending on the song you choose, Audiosurf can go from a chill, colorful trip to a bounding cosmic blast through space, so choose carefully.

5. 'Abzu'

  • Developer: Giant Squid
  • Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
  • Price: 19,99€ (Steam)

Abzu is an incredibly relaxing experience. The emphasis of the game, brought to us by the creators of Journey, is on freedom and exploration rather than a need to survive. Though if you're looking for an in-depth story, there isn't much context from the get go.

Ultimately it's a little abstract, even for the genre. Though the simple controls and visual cues guide the player forward and it's admittedly hard to not get lost in its enthralling soundtrack.

6. 'MineCraft'

Time to build - [Credit: Mojang]
Time to build - [Credit: Mojang]
  • Developer: Mojang
  • Platforms: Pretty Much Everything
  • Price: 23,95€

Minecraft has something for everyone, regardless of how you like to chill out: building things, destroying things, creating enthralling masterpieces the likes of which I could never possibly achieve—sorry, got carried away for a minute there.

Outside of the light survival elements, mining for resources is pretty therapeutic and the rush when you've finished what you're building is a feeling you'll definitely want to replicate and share with friends.

7. 'Starbound'

Starbound is a blast with friends - [Credit: Chucklefish]
Starbound is a blast with friends - [Credit: Chucklefish]
  • Developer: Chucklefish
  • Platforms: PC
  • Price: 13,99€ (Steam)

You never quite know what to expect in Starbound, partly due to its procedurally generated planets. But what you can expect is a great co-op game to jump into with friends. It might be one of the most challenging games on this list, but exploring planets like the layers of a peel onion is a joy.

There's no requirement to engage in the story, though admittedly it complements the gameplay well. Boss fights can be a little tough, as can dungeons, because of its rogue-like roots, but this is a must-play with your buddies.

8. 'Euro Truck Simulator 2'

  • Developer: SCS Software
  • Platform: PC
  • Price: 19,99€ (Steam)

The winner of not one, but two Steam awards, Euro Truck Simulator 2 is the first result under the 'relaxing' tag on Steam. Imagine Desert Bus, but with some actual variety on your mission of transporting cargo across famous European locales.

Fans of Euro Truck Simulator 2 have considered becoming truckers because of this game—though we're not sure how that would extend to the other games on this list...

With its 'Overwhelming Positive' review rating, it's not surprising Euro Truck picked up two rewards - [Credit: Valve]
With its 'Overwhelming Positive' review rating, it's not surprising Euro Truck picked up two rewards - [Credit: Valve]

We all have different ways of taking the edge off, is there a game you like to play when you want to veg out?

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