Perfect Games for Your Summer Vacation


As you’re reading this, I’m in the middle of the woods without internet and a flushing toilet. Vacations have always been tricky for me. I’m not someone whose very good at the whole “relaxing” thing, so this is actually the first time I’ll be somewhere completely ~disconnected~ from the world. So while this week clearly isn’t a time for gaming (well, at least not video games. I did pack a deck of cards!), that’s not the case for all vacations. 

Usually when I’m traveling I like to pick a game or two to play in my downtime: in the early morning over coffee, as I’m going to bed in the evening, or while in transit from place to place. Different trips also make me crave certain types of games: sometimes I want something fluffy, other times something a little emotional. However, the most important thing about vacation games is that they’re easily portable. The Nintendo Switch has definitely made on-the-go console gaming easier, but my iPad remains my favorite mobile gaming device. Without further ado, here are the locale-based recommendations I recommend:

If You’re Spending a Week in the Woods *with* a Flushing Toilet

Dark forested areas always make me crave something with a little bit of of substance, maybe a little dark too. Who said Summer was only for easy reads?

  • Oxenfree: A supernatural teen-drama about five friends and not-so-friends trapped on an island. They wrestle with life, love, and loss as they uncover the island’s horrible secret.

  • Gorogoa: An exquisite hand-drawn puzzle game, about a boy chasing a magical creature through a war torn land. It’s unlike any puzzle game other there.  

  • Rusty Lake Series: A series of escape room puzzle games involving a cursed family in their quest for immortality. I think. The story is very confusing, but interesting. There are also 13 games (four of them are longer premium titles), so you’ll be occupied for a while!

While Sun-Bathing on a Pink Sand Beach

OK, maybe not on a pink sand beach, but still. Beaches mean beach reads, and these games might be the equivalent of beach reads??

  • Florence: This “interactive storybook” is the tale of a woman’s first love, which is both relatable and heartbreaking. 

  • Miss Fisher and the Deathly Maze: Whether your a fan of the television show or not, this murder mystery will tickle your sleuthing fancy. It’s also set in 1920s Australia!

  • Hidden Folks: For all you hidden object players out there, this one’s for you. Completely hand-drawn and with mouth-originated sounds effects, this gaming will enamor you with its charm as you hunt down all sorts of objects and people.

If You’ve Got a Long Trek ahead of You

These are the game you can play for hours on end while getting from one place to another (as long as you’re not the one driving of course!). 

  • Reigns & Reigns Her Majesty: Swipe right to chop of his head. Swipe left to spare him. These are the kinds of decisions you’ll make as king or queen in this tinder-inspired monarchy game. 

  • 80 Days: Why not play a game about long journey for a long journey? Travel across the world, carefully choosing where to go, what to bring, and who to talk to. 

  • Stardew Valley: Nothing like an addicting farming game to pass the time. You might even be married with two kids by the time you reach your destination!

While Enjoying the Hustle and Bustle of a City

Play these games back in your hotel as you relax after a night on the town. You can pick them up and put them down and then pick them up again.

  • Animal Crossing Pocket Camp: It’s the free version of Animal Crossing, but it’s still adorable, AND has more furniture than the console version!

  • Mini Metro: If only subways were as calming as mini metro. After a day of delayed trains, take things into your own hands, and create your own efficient system.

  • Love Nikki-Dress UP Queen: Go be your gorgeous-elegant or simple-lively self in this glamorous game. You can make all the big city fashion choices you want for a heck of a lot cheaper.

Stay-cations are Totally a Thing

There’s nothing like staying home with zero responsibilities, no one to badger you, and all the time in the world to just play WHATEVER THE HECK YOU WANT!!!! I’m not gonna tell you what to do! IT’S YOUR LIFE MAN! Do you wanna binge Red Dead Redemption 2?! Then you go binge Red Dead Redemption 2. Or not. The choice is YOURS!

Allie Ast