Author’s Note: This list is intended as a companion piece to Morgan’s earlier article and is by no means comprehensive, only representing my personal recommendations. I acknowledge that there are many other great games available to pass the time, and if they are not included here it means that I either haven’t played them or couldn’t make room for them. While this list could have been entirely comprised of RPG’s, I have attempted to include as many genres and consoles as possible in order to provide some variety. I, unfortunately, do not play many sports games, preferring NBA Jam and NFL Blitz to the more realistic simulators, which is why they are noticeably absent here. I hope you have as fun reading this list as I did writing it. With that being said, here are some more games to play during quarantine.

Borderlands 3

I cannot think of a more perfect game to recommend at the moment than Borderlands as each entry in the series offers a supreme multiplayer experience. The games have always managed to effectively balance aspects of both the FPS and RPG genres, giving players a truly uninhibited sense of freedom and exploration. The latest installment, Borderlands 3, has made many quality-of-life improvements to refine the experience even further. There is the option to play both split-screen and online multiplayer and jumping in and out of a game session is seamless and has never been easier. Up to four players can play simultaneously online, with enemies scaling up in difficulty for each extra player and acquired loot can be split evenly among the entire party. I have not completed the main storyline as of this writing, but with massive worlds to explore and countless amounts of loot to collect I would highly recommend Borderlands 3 during the quarantine.

Final Fantasy VI (Final Fantasy III on SNES) 

Final Fantasy VI is tied with VII as my favorite entry in the franchise for so many reasons. For starters, the story is absolutely amazing and explores complex emotions and issues. The characters are also extremely memorable, including perhaps the series’ greatest villain in Kefka Palazzo. In addition, FFVI boasts the largest cast of party members in the whole franchise (14 in total). The soundtrack is also incredible and contains far too many timeless tracks to count. There is also a ton of additional content to explore outside of the main storyline. Many endgame staples from later entries, such as optional bosses and additional summons, are already present here. I spent between 80-90 hours in my original playthrough and didn’t even complete everything, completionists should expect to add at least another 10-15 hours. For fans of old-school RPG’s, Final Fantasy VI offers an epic adventure that will entertain for hours. 

Rayman Legends

More Games to Play During Quarantine

As much I loved playing Crash Bandicoot and the 3D Mario games growing up, I have always preferred 2D platformers to their 3D counterparts. Rayman Legends impressed me so much because it delivered a fresh 2D platforming experience at a time when I personally felt that the genre was getting stale. The New Super Mario Bros. games tried to recapture the magic of titles like Super Mario Bros. 3 and Super Mario World but just felt like cheap imitations. Rayman Legends, however, features tight controls, creative and diverse level design, and tons of unlockables. There are over 120 levels to play through, including 40 remastered levels from the previous game in the series, Rayman Origins. The game is also fairly difficult and can present a challenge to even the most seasoned players. A criminally underrated title in the 2D platform genre, Rayman Legends is a rewarding play that is well worth your time. 

Killer Queen Black

more games to play during quarantine

A competitive indie game with a retro aesthetic, Killer Queen Black is an arcade port that is so fun and addictive that players will have a hard time putting it down. I have had the opportunity of playing the arcade version with the full ten players and I haven’t felt such a strong sense of camaraderie in a game in a very long time. Teamwork is an absolute necessity, making the victories all the more satisfying. Switch owners (and Steam users) are fortunate enough to be able to play this game from the safety of their own couch and while it isn’t quite the epic experience that it is in the arcade, Killer Queen Black is still one heck of a good time. The Switch version retains many of the features from the arcade, including the three different ways to win, but the action is scaled to 4v4 gameplay instead of 5v5. The main selling point of playing the Switch version is that all this fun can be had with people online. There are a multitude of online options to choose from that can be played with voice chat, as well as the option to spectate matches, providing endless hours of fun. It is also possible to play locally with AI-controlled players. For those that have worn out Smash Bros. or Mario Kart, Killer Queen Black is the perfect social game and a terrific addition to your Switch library.

Mortal Kombat 11

More Games to Play During Quarantine

Since 2011 I have been so impressed with the way that Mortal Kombat has been able to simultaneously adapt with the times and stay true to its roots, and Mortal Kombat 11 is no exception. I have honestly only played this installment for a few hours but after playing the two previous entries I can safely say that there is a ton of content here. The base game features a good mix of current and classic fighters and contains a total of 24 characters to master. In addition, there are (currently) 7 DLC fighters available for download including additional classic characters, Spawn, The Joker, and the T-800 Terminator. Offline features include a story mode, Towers of Time, Klassic towers, and the Krypt, but that’s just barely scratching the surface. The Krypt is a massive undertaking in itself, containing a myriad of secrets and unlockables. The tutorial mode is one of the most in-depth that I’ve personally ever seen in a fighting game; I spent over an hour and a half and didn’t even complete all of the tutorials. If that’s not enough, you can always test your skills against opponents online for rewards and bragging rights. Mortal Kombat 11 is packed to the brim with content, and with so much to do both offline and online, it will keep you occupied for quite some time.

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

So much has already been written about The Witcher 3 that it is impossible for me to do it justice here, but for those players looking to get the most out of their games, it is an absolute must. The story is expansive and filled with many interesting characters, but that is only the tip of the iceberg. There are usually multiple ways to complete a mission and decisions that are made early on, including romance options, affect how specific events play out later. This doesn’t even include all of the side quests that are available, such as the various monster hunts. These hunts can be particularly challenging because they all require a different strategy and level of preparation, depending on the type of monster. Another time-consuming feature is the card game known as Gwent, a trading card game that can be played with NPC’s all over the world. New cards can be acquired and added to a player’s deck by defeating specific characters, and decks can be customized to a player’s liking. It is this level of customizability that had me hooked, as once I had my deck fine-tuned just right, I would play Gwent for hours on end. There is even a side quest that revolves around a high-stakes Gwent tournament, once certain conditions have been met. I spent over 300 hours on The Witcher 3 and that only accounts for the content that is included in the base game. The DLC that has been released since 2015 will add even more time to the playthrough. A strong contender for best game of this generation, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt offers such a deep experience that it should be played by everyone.

About The Author

Jeremy Nowak is a Doctoral Candidate in Music Theory at the University of North Texas and is currently writing his dissertation on the piano music of Robert Schumann. Upon completion of his Ph.D., he aspires to be a professor of music theory at the university level. He is a childhood friend of Morgan Lewis, having grown up in West Palm Beach, Florida. Besides music, his interests include retro video games and skateboarding. Jeremy takes particular pride in his collection of Super Nintendo games, with Chrono Trigger, Super Mario RPG, and Super Mario World being among his favorite video games of all time.

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