The games I’m playing during coronavirus self-isolation


In an attempt to slow the coronavirus outbreak, health organizations like the WHO and the CDC are recommending that people exercise social distancing in communities where the virus is spreading. On top of that, sports organizations like the NHL and NBA have postponed the remainder of their seasons, Broadway theaters are closed until further notice, film distributors are delaying major upcoming films, and there’s even talk of movie theaters temporarily closing.

With the directive to avoid crowds when possible, that means a lot of entertainment options have vanished. There’s still plenty of entertainment to be had at home, though, thanks in part to video games. If you’re looking stay inside as much as possible in the coming weeks, here are several games you can really sink your teeth into as you pass the time.


When the topic is “games you can play forever,” Terraria makes the top of my list. Terraria is my most-played game on Steam by a longshot, and even though I’ve sunk hundreds of hours into it, there’s still plenty for me to do. Given that Terraria is one of the best-selling games of all time (at least according to this list), it stands to reason that many have already played it, but even if you have, there’s plenty of reason to dive back in and give it another go.


While Terraria might be the PC game I’ve played most, RimWorld is the game that currently occupies much of my free time. RimWorld is notable for being among the best-reviewed games on Steam, and there’s good reason for that: as a survival colony sim, RimWorld succeeds with flying colors, ensuring that no two attempts at building a thriving colony are the same. RimWorld hits all the right notes and does so masterfully, and it’s one of those games where the hours seem to melt away while you’re playing.

World of Warcraft Classic

I know that seeing World of Warcraft Classic on this list will probably elicit eye rolls from at least some readers, but it turns out that sometimes looking at the past through rose-tinted glasses is well warranted. World of Warcraft Classic takes us back to the days when WoW was at its best (or shortly before WoW peaked, depending on who you’re asking), and just like it was in 2004, it’s a fun way to kill a lot of time.

Fire Emblem: Three Houses

The Nintendo Switch certainly isn’t lacking in really good first-party games, but Fire Emblem: Three Houses is among the best of them. In fact, I’d argue that Three Houses was one of the best games of last year, and with three different houses to play as, the game’s already lengthy campaign has a good amount of replayability. Three Houses could very well be Fire Emblem at its best, and it’s worth checking out for anyone who likes tactical RPGs.

They Are Billions

If you’re looking for a challenge, you need look no further than They Are Billions. They Are Billions combines the real-time strategy and survival genres, tasking you with building a colony that can survive an onslaught of zombies. It can be insanely difficult, but it has adjustable difficulty settings so those who are just starting out can find their footing and stand some small chance at winning. Equal parts addicting and frustrating, They Are Billions is perfect for those who don’t mind learning through failure.

Literally any Civilization game

Those wanting to forget the troubles of the outside world for a while would be well served in starting a game of Civilization. It doesn’t matter which of the six Civilization games you pick – a match in any of them can hold your attention for hours on end. Personally, I’d go for Civilization VI, but you can’t go wrong with Civilization V and its DLC content (of which there’s a lot).

Path of Exile

Modern-day action RPGs don’t get a whole lot better than Path of Exile, a free-to-play Diablo challenger that has been going strong for a number of years now. To those who are used to playing games like Diablo 3 or Torchlight 2, Path of Exile‘s extensive passive skill tree can feel intimidating, but part of the fun is navigating the tree and figuring out builds that work well and are fun to play. A new seasonal league called Delirium even kicked off last week, which is perfect for those who are hunkering down while the COVID-19 outbreak plays out.

Dead Cells

When the task at hand is getting a lot of mileage out of the games you buy, roguelike titles are well worth considering, and Dead Cells happens to be one of the best (assuming that you like action platformers). There are a ton of roguelike games out there that are worth your money and your time – FTL, Enter the Gungeon, Rogue Legacy, and Don’t Starve to name a few – but Dead Cells is really in a league of its own.

Of course, there’s no lack of great games to dive into while we wait for this outbreak to run its course, and a lot of us are looking forward to the release of Animal Crossing: New Horizons next month. What are your go-to games going to be over the next few weeks? Head down to the comment section and let us know!

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