As a busy semester comes to a break, college students may find some extra time on their hands. Much of this time is usually allocated towards working. That said, it is important for hardworking scholars to take a step back and relax every now and then. Gaming can be a fun, interactive hobby to occupy this newfound spare time. It also serves as a great way to rewind after partaking in demanding university courses. Video games do not only offer an engaging gameplay experience, however. Many modern games also offer narrative storytelling that rivals the likes of major film and television productions. Without further ado, the following are three narrative-driven video games that students will not regret playing during their break from school.
1. The Last of Us Part I
The Last of Us originally came out in June of 2013 for the Playstation 3, but that was only the beginning. It has since been remastered for the Playstation 4 and now completely remade from the ground up with the Playstation 5’s specifications in mind. The PS5 is where gamers will find the definitive version of the critically acclaimed action-adventure game. This version features enhanced visuals, fast loading, haptic feedback, adaptive triggers, 3D audio, and more according to playstation.com.
Gamers will find themselves deeply connected to the main characters, Joel and Ellie, as they go on a long quest across the country to find a cure to the zombie outbreak virus. Ellie is a fourteen year old girl who found herself in this predicament after she discovered that she is immune to the virus and can not be infected. Joel is an older, hardened scavenger who is willing to do anything to survive in this grim, post-apocalyptic world. He hesitantly agrees to smuggle Ellie outside of the quarantine zone in exchange for weapons from the militia group looking for a vaccine. Throughout the course of their journey, Joel and Ellie go from distant strangers to having a father-daughter-esque relationship. This special bond between these characters is what makes the story so heartwarming.
2. Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection
Released in 2015 by Sony Computer Entertainment, Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection features the first three video games in the Uncharted franchise. However, these are not the same exact games ported over from the Playstation 3. The third-person, action-adventure games have been remastered for the Playstation 4 by Bluepoint Games. The remasters provide much smoother gameplay, better animations, increased resolutions, and better graphical quality. One thing the developers left untouched for the better is the intriguing writing and storytelling. This means that players will get the same witty, charismatic characters. Game Reviewer, Vince Ingenito, from ign.com appears to agree with this sentiment. He gives the remastered games a 9/10. Furthermore, he states they have never “looked or played better,” are a “blast to play,” and the “characters are as charming and memorable as ever.”
Gamers will find themselves playing as Nathan Drake, or Nate for short, who believes himself to be a descendant of Sir Frances Drake – an english explorer/pirate. Nate is a lovable, adventurous young man looking to discover more about his “family’s” history and riches. Throughout his adventures, he is met with obstacles both new and old. He has to fight his way around other thieves looking to make their own fortunes. Additionally, he must keep his eyes peeled for ancient booby traps put in place centuries prior by pirates. Thus, student gamers will be faced with lots of combat, puzzle-solving, epic set-pieces, and dramatic cutscenes.
3. Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales Ultimate Edition
This is the game for college students who are fans of Spider-Man or the Marvel Universe in general. This package deal features both the remastered Marvel’s Spider-Man and Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales developed by Insomniac Games. The first of which focuses on the story of Peter Parker, who has had his powers for eight years. He uses his abilities to fight crime and protect the civilians of New York City. However, Peter consistently struggles to find balance between his personal life and his duties as Spider-Man.
While Spider-Man has amazingly fun gameplay mechanics such as web-swinging through city streets, it isn’t only gameplay-oriented. It has the perfect balance of action and story, as pointed out by a 9.5/10 gameinformer.com review. Andrew Reiner states, “The story has a soul, and isn’t afraid to slow down after a hard-hitting fight to show players Peter is every bit as interesting as his alter ego.” This statement rings true for many gamers, as they wind up sympathizing and feeling for Peter throughout the immersive game.
On the other hand, Spider-Man: Miles Morales focuses on Miles’ role as the second Spider-Man to protect his home – Harlem. Unfortunately for Miles, Harlem is also the home to an ongoing war between Roxxon Energy Corporation and a terrorist group known as the Underground. To follow in the footsteps of his recently deceased father and become a hero for Harlem, Miles knows he must get to the bottom of this nasty war. In doing this, Miles discovers that even the people he loves and trusts the most can betray him and the whole city.
To wrap things up, college students can’t go wrong with playing any of these compelling video games during their break from classes. Whether they are a fan of gritty zombie stories, action-packed treasure-hunting, the Marvel universe, or great narrative storytelling in general, students will find themselves struggling to put the controller down wile playing any of these masterpieces.