Everyone’s got a game that they can’t get enough of. Maybe it’s a multiplayer shooter, a sandbox game, or just an MMO. Whatever it might be, we’ve all felt that pull that a game can exert on you. Some games seem to have that addictive formula nailed down to where it’s ever harder to walk away. These eight games are prime examples of that.
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The Elder Scrolls
No matter which installment of The Elder Scrolls you prefer, you can’t deny the appeal the series holds. Gamers have sunk thousands of hours into Bethesda’s worlds, and almost everyone knows someone who can’t seem to put the game down. Not only are games filled with story and activities, but they offer a massive modding community that continues to grow and expand the game, making it even harder to pull yourself away.
Few games have captured the imagination of as many people as Minecraft. It’s most easily described as a “digital sandbox” that lets players build almost anything that they want, anytime they want. Want to build a working computer in the game? You can do that. Want to make a challenging maze full of challenges for your friends? Go for it. Want to forget about all the challenging monsters and just build? You can do that too. It’s a combination that has led a lot of people down the Minecraft rabbit hole.
Blizzard’s real-time strategy masterpiece has been sucking gamers in since it first launched in 1998. There’s a huge professional scene, and Starcraft continually is one of the most popular games on PC. Professional players in Korea are as big as sports stars are in America. In an example of the addictive nature of the game, a 28 year-old man died of heart failure brought on by exhaustion and dehydration after a 50-hour Starcraft marathon in an internet cafe in 2005.
The concept behind Counter-Strike is incredibly simple: One side tries to accomplish an objective (plant the bomb, rescue the hostages) and the other team tries to stop them. While it may sound pretty basic, that formula has kept players engaged for over 16 years, and continues to do so today. A number of follow-up game sin the series have been released, but they usually amount to nothing more than a graphical upgrade and a few tweaks. No matter which version of the game is your favorite, you can’t deny that Counter-Strike has captivated gamers for a long, long time.
“Gotta catch ’em all.” That innocuous phrase has left countless gamers hunting for all of the creatures to fill their Pokedex. Once they find them all and beat the game, it seems like there’s a new game in the Pokemon franchise to do it all over again. There have been numerous entries in the series over the years, but the core game really hasn’t changed much, mostly because Game Freak doesn’t want to monkey around with a proven formula – one that has captivated gamers since 1996.
As the second major MMORPG ever released, Everquest broke a lot of ground in the genre, including being the first use a 3D engine. It also captured the attention of quite a few gamers. Even though its subscription numbers would be dwarfed by World of Warcraft a few years later, Everquestmaintains its appeal even today. Over 16 years later, it’s still running, and still has a dedicated playerbase. In fact, the latest Everquest expansion just launched late last year. They really weren’t kidding when they nicknamed it “EverCrack.”
We’ve all been there. It’s way past time for bed, you’re sitting in front of your PC, and for the last two hours, you’ve been muttering, “Just…one…more…turn…” What kind of a game could do this to us? Civilization, of course. Whether you’re trying to conquer that last enemy, or just talk Ghandi down from nuking you, Sid Meier’s empire-building game gets its hooks in you, and then won’t let go. One minute you’re sitting down for a quick game, and the next thing you know, the alarm is going off, you’re about to be late for work, and you’re still trying to convince yourself to play just one more turn.
World of Warcraft
When it comes to addicting games, World of Warcraft is the undisputed king. Almost everyone either knows someone who’s gotten in deep with the game, and if you don’t you definitely know someone who knows one of those folks. Whether they got pulled in by the raiding and guild camaraderie, or just liked the idea of exploring the world, people have ignored their families, trashed their marriages, and lost their jobs because of WoW. The worst part is that even though it’s over ten years old, almost everyone who’s ever played it still considers going back whenever there’s a new expansion. Yeah, it’s that addictive.