Ultimate Guide to Relaxing Video Games: Unwind and Escape Stress

Video games have evolved beyond being just a source of excitement and adrenaline. While challenging RPGs and hardcore boss fights exist, there’s a delightful world of video games that allow you to relax and escape the hustle and bustle of life. In this guide, we’ll explore a curated list of the most soothing and calming video games that cater to your need for tranquility and leisure.

The Rise of Relaxing Games

Relaxing video games have gained immense popularity in recent years. Titles like Minecraft and Stardew Valley have paved the way for a genre that offers players a serene escape from the demands of work and competitive gaming. Whether you’re an indie game enthusiast or prefer big-name titles, there’s a relaxing game waiting for you. These games strike the perfect balance, engaging you without overwhelming your senses. Many can even be enjoyed in the background while you listen to audiobooks or podcasts.

1. Kingdom: Classic – Ruling at Your Own Pace

  • Release Date: October 21, 2015
  • Developer: Thomas van den Berg & Marco Bancale
  • Platforms: Mobile, PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One

Kingdom: Classic takes you to a fantasy medieval world filled with procedurally generated wonders. As a king or queen atop your trusty steed, you’ll embark on a cozy 2D sidescrolling adventure. The game’s strategy and resource management elements are just challenging enough to keep you engaged while maintaining a soothing atmosphere with lush pixel graphics.

2. The Legend Of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild – A Quieter Hyrule

  • Release Date: March 3, 2017
  • Developer: Nintendo
  • Platforms: Switch, Wii U

While The Legend of Zelda series is known for its epic adventures, Breath of the Wild offers a quieter and cozier Hyrule experience. You can teleport away from danger anytime and indulge in the serene exploration that defines the game.

3. Everything – Embrace the Universe

  • Release Date: March 21, 2017
  • Developer: David OReilly
  • Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch

In Everything, you can truly become everything. Play as a plant, animal, rock, bug, or even a planet. While there’s no story, you’ll explore a vast world and listen to philosopher Alan Watts discussing Eastern philosophy, adding to the relaxation factor.

4. flOw – Swim as a Peaceful Creature

  • Release Date: April 14, 2006
  • Developer: Thatgamecompany
  • Platforms: Browser, PS3, PS4, PSP, PS Vita

flOw, a creation by Thatgamecompany, invites you to embody a worm-like creature that swims and consumes smaller organisms. The game is relaxing because you can’t die, and the difficulty adjusts to your skill level.

5. A Short Hike – Explore, Swim, and Relax

  • Release Date: April 5, 2019
  • Developer: Adam Robinson-Yu
  • Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One

A Short Hike is a game purely about exploration, offering a delightful journey that can be completed in a couple of hours. Treasure hunting, swimming, fishing, and conversations with fellow hikers await, all at your own pace.

6. Journey – Squeak and Ascend

  • Release Date: March 13, 2012
  • Developer: Thatgamecompany
  • Platforms: iOS, PC, PS3, PS4

In Journey, you become a human-like creature on a quest to reach the top of a mysterious mountain. Interact with other players through simple squeaks and collaborate to progress. This short game offers a truly enchanting experience.

7. ABZU – Dive into the Depths

  • Release Date: August 2, 2016
  • Developer: Giant Squid
  • Platforms: Amazon Luna, PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One

ABZU takes you on an underwater adventure as a diver exploring the ocean’s beauty. Interact with sea life using sonar chimes and even ride larger marine creatures. It’s a visually stunning and calming experience.

8. Minecraft – Endless Exploration

  • Release Date: November 18, 2011
  • Developer: Mojang Studios
  • Platforms: Mobile, PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S

Minecraft lets you explore an infinite world, gather materials, and build at your own pace. Whether you prefer survival or creative modes, Minecraft adapts to your mood, making it both relaxing and exciting.

9. Cozy Grove – A Tranquil Life Simulator

  • Release Date: April 7, 2021
  • Developer: Spry Fox
  • Platforms: iOS, PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S

Cozy Grove is akin to Animal Crossing, synchronized with real-world time. As a Spirit Scout, you’ll explore the woods, assist local ghosts, and craft decorations. Perfect for a daily dose of relaxation and charm.

10. Flower – Wind-Powered Exploration

  • Release Date: February 12, 2009
  • Developer: Thatgamecompany
  • Platforms: iOS, PC, PS3, PS4, PS Vita

Control the wind and a flower petal in Flower, a unique game known for its captivating soundtrack. Experience the rise and fall of your actions through music. This artistic masterpiece can be completed in just an hour.

11. Stardew Valley – Farming and Friendship

  • Release Date: February 26, 2016
  • Developer: Eric Barone
  • Platforms: Mobile, PC, PS4, PS Vita, Switch, Xbox One

Stardew Valley, a labor of love by a single developer, offers farming, relationships with villagers, mining, fishing, and even family life. Its flexibility allows you to choose your level of excitement.

12. Astroneer – Colonize Distant Planets

  • Release Date: December 16, 2016
  • Developer: System Era Softworks
  • Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One

Astroneer, a sandbox adventure, challenges you to colonize planets without a set goal. Unique challenges await on each planet as you craft items and reshape terrain.

13. No Man’s Sky – Endless Exploration

  • Release Date: August 9, 2016
  • Developer: Hello Games
  • Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S

No Man’s Sky has evolved from a rocky launch to a relaxed and limitless universe. Play as an explorer or trader, finding peace in the endless possibilities.

14. Animal Crossing: New Horizons – Real-Time Bliss

  • Release Date: March 20, 2020
  • Developer: Nintendo
  • Platforms: Switch

Animal Crossing: New Horizons offers daily surprises with real-time gameplay. Enjoy decorating your home and exploring a changing world, or revisit older titles in the series.

15. Slime Rancher – First-Person Ranching

  • Release Date: August 1, 2017
  • Developer: Monomi Park
  • Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One

Slime Rancher puts you in the shoes of Beatrix, a rancher exploring a foreign planet, raising slimes, and constructing your ranch. It’s a sandbox adventure that’s as charming as it is relaxing.


These relaxing video games are your passport to a tranquil digital escape. Whether you crave the serenity of exploration or the peace of a cozy virtual world, there’s a game here to help you unwind and relax. Take a break, immerse yourself, and let the stress melt away as you embark on these calming gaming adventures.