Couple playing video games

Looking for a Pandemic-Friendly Couple’s Activity? Try Gaming

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These days, it can be hard to find things to do that don’t involve going out into crowds.

Restaurants might be feasible, but honestly how romantic is it to be served food by people wearing hazmat suits? Concerts and other shows are a no-go. Movie theaters still sound a bit risky. And outside activities aren’t always ideal when it’s still a zillion degrees outside.

So what’s a couple to do, besides sit around and watch TV? Surely, by now you’re craving something a bit more intellectually stimulating than sitcom reruns. (And less infuriating than current event coverage).

Enter the wide world of video games. If you’ve never been interested in gaming, you might be surprised at what your relationship could get out of it. It forces you to communicate, work together, and problem solve as a team. 

Whether you want something fun, competitive, cinematic, or atmospheric, there’s a game to break you out of that quasi-lockdown rut.

So where to begin? Let’s look at a few genres and titles to get you started on your next great adventure as a couple.

Narrative Adventure Games

These games rose to prominence around 10 years ago with titles like Telltale Games’ The Walking Dead. They’re set up in a sort of “choose your own adventure” format. Scenes play out, and you’re presented with choices to make on behalf of the characters.

These can be incredibly fun to play as a couple. They’re not too chaotic, but you will have to make decisions together that will affect the outcome of the story. Many of these are based on existing intellectual property. You’ll find titles connected to Game of Thrones, Guardians of the Galaxy, and Batman. Other notable ones to check out are Life is Strange, A Wolf Among Us, and Until Dawn.  

Cinematic Games

People often underestimate the incredible storytelling power of video games. But believe me, they can be beautiful, and sometimes downright gut-wrenching.

An example of this would be The Last of Us. It’s the story of a smuggler tasked with escorting a teenage girl across a post-apocalyptic United States. The imagery, music, and performances are all gorgeous.

There are plenty of other great examples. A Way Out is a co-op game where you play prison inmates attempting to escape. In A Plague Tale: Innocence, you play a young girl trying to find a cure for her ill brother during the Black Plague. And The Witcher III is one everyone’s sure to be familiar with after the popular Netflix series aired.

Platformers and Turn-based Strategy Games

You’ll love these games if you’re looking for something fast-paced that will make you work together. You’ll need to solve puzzles and strategize through battle and survival scenarios.

These examples are all co-op, so rather than passing the controller back and forth like you typically will be in more cinematic games, you’ll both be playing at the same time. 

Child of Light is a gorgeous platformer role-playing game where you play as Aurora, a child who’s died from a mysterious illness, and must bring back the sun, the moon, and the stars to make her way home.

Salt & Sanctuary is a fun and fast-paced action-adventure game. Divinity Original Sin and Divinity II are turn-based fantasy role-playing games. And How to Survive is an incredibly fun survival game set on a deserted island in the zombie apocalypse.

Arcade and Party Games

Looking for something a little less intense? Arcade and party games are fast, fun, brightly colored, and typically enjoyably chaotic. I would say racing games also fall into this category, and Mario Kart is a famous example 

Other great ones to check out are the new Fall Guys, a hilariously adorable game that I would describe as American Ninja Warrior with blobby, klutzy cartoon characters. Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime is a space-shooter co-op that requires teamwork to explore the galaxy, rescue kidnapped space-bunnies, and avoid a vacuumy demise. 

I’d also recommend an odd little game called Human: Fall Flat. It isn’t technically a party game as you’re not competing against each other or anyone else. But you’ll be rolling on the ground laughing as you try to navigate the gravity of this platform puzzler. Trust me, just check out the trailer.

Happy Gaming!

This is, obviously, not a comprehensive list. There are so many more genres and games to check out if you’re interested in gaming as a couple.

Hopefully, this has piqued your interest in a new activity to keep you both entertained while you’re stuck at home.