The Most Relaxing Video Games (Hardback)
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Video games are so much more than just full throttle blasts of gunfights, violence and white-knuckle competition. They can also be beautiful, cosy and even emotionally uplifting journeys too. The ideal escapism after a day you’d sooner forget or the perfect sedative following a particularly stress-filled afternoon.
The Most Relaxing Video Games will walk you through a selection of gaming experiences sure to help you unwind. From the familiar warmth of sitting down with a good classic board game (51 of them to be exact) through to the solving of hundreds of puzzles on a mysterious island using nothing but lines, there’s a world of delightfully comforting video games just waiting to sooth your gaming soul.
Covering over 50 video games and spanning nearly thirty years, this comprehensive guide includes detailed explanations of every peaceful entry along with full-colour screenshots, standout moments, fascinating facts and of course what it is that makes them such a relaxing alternative. Whether you’re a fan of racers, management sims, puzzles or platformers, there’s something here for everyone.
So trade in your firearms for farming gear and punching fists for puzzles. Sit back, get comfy and discover the relaxing side that video games have to offer.
Rating: 5 out of 5 starsNetGalley, Rachel Musselwhite
The majority of my free time is spent playing video games. I met my husband while playing Overwatch, so gaming is a big part of our lives. Between Fortnite and Overwatch, we can get quite frustrated so finding a relaxing game that we can play together or apart is important for remaining relaxed and having a good time.
Stardew Valley is one of our favorite games to play together. There is so much depth that the creator put into the game, so much to do, you can get sucked in for days playing.
A Little to the Left is a fun, relaxing game that i enjoy playing in my free time when nobody else is available for games. It helps to release my need to organize without having to put in too much effort and it’s so fun to finally solve each puzzle.
Rating: 5 out of 5 starsNetGalley, Kathryn McLeer
I really enjoyed reading this as I love reading about video games. Each game was very relaxing to read about and I Love the screenshots. Ryan James writes a great educational book, and I think young kids and teens will love it, especially if they're a gamer.
Rating: 5 out of 5 starsNetGalley, Ink Reads
Are you a gamer? Are you not a gamer but want something different to distract yourself for a little while? Do you need a bit of breathing space without putting down your controller/ keyboard/ VR Headset? Then this is the book for you, a fantastic guide to games you can chill out to. (And lets face it, we all need a bit of down time here and there!)
The first thing I noticed (and really liked) was the table at the beginning of each chapter with all of the relevant details, year, publisher, developer, genre and formats. If you are planning on buying these games, seeking second hand copies online and so on, this is great data to have to hand (not at all making notes to boost my geek points with the other half) The "Did You Know" caption at the end of the chapter is awesome trivia and the page numbers in a controller graphics are a really nice touch.
The visuals are gorgeous and the publishers have done an excellent job at enhancing and refining older style graphics from the older games, beautiful!
The best thing about this book, is that it is clearly written from the perspective of an ardent gamer. No snobbery or pro-game tips, it's all about enjoying games and sharing the love of games (eee, Kirby's world, it's been an age since I have seen that!) Reading through The Most Relaxing Video Games is exactly that, relaxing, a nice trip down memory lane and a lot of banter thanks to the nice, engaging narrative
I would love to read more from this author and will certainly be recommending this book to my gamer friends (I will also be getting a copy as Sunday nights on Worms Armageddon and Online Uno can always make room for some more friendly competition!)
Thank you very much to Netgalley, Pen & Sword and White Owl for this absolutely brilliant ARC! Thank you also to Ryan Janes for writing a book that welcomes everyone and in such an affable and engaging way, wonderful!
I rediscovered the joy of gaming over the lockdown period - I'm very much an advocate now for the mental health benefits of gaming. In Ryan James' introduction he talks about his own mental health struggles and how gaming helps him with his anxiety and OCD. Not all games out there are shooters or violence focused... they can be fully immersive, relaxing, interactive story or puzzle based games, that I've come to find even more enjoyable than reading a good book at times! It's not always easy to know what's out there in terms of games I'd enjoy, so I found this book really helpful to discover new possibilites.NetGalley, Ginny Euston
Very simple book which provides some interesting background and facts about each relaxing game. I liked this book as i am a cozy gamer and am always looking for more games to play, this book is perfect for a range of gamers as it recommends games across different areas of interest from animal crossing to American truck simulator. I think this would make an excellent coffee book and it is an interesting read if you want to learn a bit more about the games your playing. Thanks for letting me review this!NetGalley, Elicia Burge
I have been a lifelong gamer since the Nintendo system came out when I was a child. I didn’t get my own system until I got a SEGA system for my birthday. Now I have an Xbox Series X and a PS5. I don’t expect I’ll ever stop gaming.NetGalley, Jennifer Thompson
So when I saw this book of The Most Relaxing Video Games on NetGalley I wished for it and got it. It’s very well done. The author starts by explaining a bit about each game, its history and why it’s relaxing. There are plenty I hadn’t heard of but loved that he included The Quarry which is a horror game. Of course stuff like Tetris is here but also Farming Simulator to newer games likes Journey.
If you’re a gamer or know one I recommend this book.
Rating: 5 out of 5 starsNetGalley, Marz Hare
A perfect companion to cosy gaming through which I've discovered some new games, revisited old favourites, and found out some fun facts about their developers and worlds.
I can highly recommend this lovingly-written guide to anyone who, like me, likes to unwind with a game. It covers a wide variety of relaxing games for different platforms, so chances are you'll find something new to suit your tastes! I know I'll be giving 'A short hike' and 'The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles' a try soon :D
I’m not a gamer. I’ve never played (well my brother had a Sega once) but my husband and kids are. When I saw this book I thought this was my chance to find something maybe even I could play. And spoiler: I did!NetGalley, Joni Owens
The author gives the information about the game (when it was made, who made it and most importantly what device you can play it on) , what the story if the game is. The cool added was the little known facts the author put at the end of each game.
Rating: 5 out of 5 starsNetGalley, Jac Miller
As someone who enjoys relaxing games, I loved this. Each game is very detailed with a description on the adventure you are about to play, and a fun fact about each game. A lot of time was taken to write such detail about the games. I know when I’m bored next time, I will refer to this book. Great book to give to a someone who wants to play more video games!
You might see this and be tempted to write it off as little better than a list of relaxing games you could find online, but this title goes deeper into games than most lists I’ve personally come across and I have looked - growing up, I remember the high stress I’d get just trying to play Super Mario Brothers, I still get mildly stressed when trying to catch a scorpion or tarantula in Animal Crossing New Horizons so the idea of relaxing video games is definitely appealing. Actiony fighty games are definitely not for me.NetGalley, Michelle Smith
I personally appreciated this - I found a number of new games that I’m interested in trying and feel that this title would make a great gift (along with some preferred gaming platform giftcards) for the gamer in your life who prefers laid back games.
Rating: 5 out of 5 starsNetGalley, A D
My favourite games are cozy games, like farming simulators so this was a great read to find more similar games.
Rating: 5 out of 5 starsNetGalley, Books the Magical Fruit
I had so much fun going over these games with my 13-year-old son! I now have about ten additional tabs open on my iPad of Nintendo Switch games to look into. Also, I saw that some are on sale for Christmas, so it's good timing.
I appreciated how open and vulnerable Janes is at the beginning of the book. He talks about how his anxiety and OCD often kept him from doing more social things, but that video games were always a pleasant escape for him. My son has pretty severe anxiety himself, and I see firsthand how he also is happiest playing his favorite video games.
There's a big variety of games listed, and the author has some from each gaming system, so if you only have an Xbox, or Switch, or PC, etc., never fear--there's something in here for everyone. The "Did You Know" trivia at the end of each section is super interesting, as well.
I highly recommend checking this book out when it comes out in March 2024!
Rating: 5 out of 5 starsNetGalley, Emma Byrne
This book is brilliant, it takes a look at the more relaxing side of gaming with plenty of great ideas and interesting information about the games.
The Most Relaxing Video Games does exactly what it says on the tin and explores over 50 different video games which are all relaxing to play and non-violent. As someone who finds many of the popular video games stressful, this book was perfect for suggestions of games from puzzles to simulations which would be fun to play.NetGalley, Lucy Preston
I really liked that screenshots from the games were included as it provided a great insight into the style of the game and whether its something I would enjoy. The fun facts included throughout were a nice addition and were quite interesting. I thought it was great that for each game it was clearly specified which devices it would work on as this is something I struggle with when trying to find games which I can play on my PC...
Overall, this is a great hand book of relaxing video games and I will definitely be downloading a few of these games myself!