Time is precious and spending it to play video games may have dwindled down for some of you at times. This doesn’t mean you can’t get a full game completed relatively quick. If you’re seeking out some of the shorter video game titles that you can enjoy and complete in a weekend then we have you covered.
In this list we chart out some of the shorter good games you can easily play and complete before starting up the following week full of school or work. These games are not listed in any particular order but we tried to give you a nice variety of titles to pick from. Likewise, we’ll continue to update this list with new picks regularly so make sure to check back for future updates. Without further ado, here are some great short games you can beat in a single weekend.
#25 Resident Evil 3
The development studio Capcom has a large rich backlog of video game IPs to play with, but one of their more iconic franchise the company is known for is the Resident Evil series. Resident Evil has been around since the original PlayStation and over the years we’ve not only have mainline installments release but spin-off games as well. This franchise is so massive that we’re seeing the development studio go back and remake these games for not only veteran fans but newcomers to the IP as well. After Resident Evil and Resident Evil 2, Capcom went on to remake Resident Evil 3 before they announced the next mainline installment, Resident Evil Village.
This remake is adapting the Resident Evil 3: Nemesis release which came out in 1999. It’s a vastly shorter game as well with the title focusing on one character to play through the campaign along with it being a linear gameplay approach. Rather than going back and forth between different areas, players are mainly continuing down the storyline from one set piece to the next. If you’re not familiar with this game installment, in particular, Resident Evil 3 takes place shortly after the events of Resident Evil. Players will take on the role of Jill Valentine who is researching the Umbrella Corporation in hopes of unveiling their nefarious plots. However, her world comes crumbling down when a new T-virus outbreak overruns the city and the Umbrella Corporation unleashes their latest BOW to take out any and all remaining STARS members. Now Jill is on the run with a growing list of questions that she desperately needs answers for. As mentioned, this is a shorter game than the other Resident Evil installments so you’ll only need to set aside about six hours to finish the main story.
Frictional Games are fantastic developers who know how to create terrifying video games as they previously released Penumbra and Amnesia. Their latest release falls right in line with the past two IP launches. Soma is a survival horror title that puts players into an underwater remote research facility.
Within the game, players take on the role of Simon Jarrett who must uncover the truth behind the facility that’s gone rogue with machines taking on more human characteristics.
If you’re familiar Amnesia, Soma takes on the similar gameplay style in that players will be keen to take a stealthy approach when dealing with the enemy. It’s best to avoid danger when possible while searching for clues and solving puzzles.
What originally started out as a prototype from Game Jam, Celeste later released under indie development team Matt Makes Games. The video game follows a young girl named Madeline who is attempting to climb a giant mountain known as Celeste Mountain. This is no ordinary mountain as urban legends claim that those who manage to climb up the mountain and reach the top will put to rest any inner turmoil.
This is a fast-paced platformer where Madeline can not only jump and climb up the mountain but also perform mid-air dash movements that will shoot her across the area. Of course, the levels themselves are loaded with other mechanics to help the player reach new heights such as springs to fling players upwards though you’ll still need to be careful to avoid any threats such as deadly spikes. If players die during a course, the game will reset Madeline to the starting section of the level.
#22 Gone Home
Gone Home plays out like a first-person adventure title where players take on the role of a young girl who returns home on break. However, once players arrive home they find it empty. This journey is based around finding where your mother, father and sister has vanished too.
Gameplay is more or less a walking simulator where you roam from room to room in order to find enough clues that you’ll figure out just what happened prior to your arrival. While this title looks to be filled with jump scares just waiting to pop out, it’s actually a deep narrative journey that’s relaxed. You won’t find yourself running from a supernatural being or invader. Of course with that said, this is still a mature story that plays out through clues and messages you find throughout the home.
#21 Uncharted The Lost Legacy
The Uncharted: The Lost Legacy is not necessarily a standalone video game, but a single-player DLC for Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End. This particular DLC storyline will take place after the events of the fourth main Uncharted installment. Players will be taking on the role of Chloe Frazer as she travels to India’s Western Ghats mountain range amid a civil war in search for a mystical treasure.
As mentioned this story will follow after the events of Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End and while you don’t need to play Uncharted 4 or arguably any of the previous installments, its well worth going back and doing so. Most of the main characters from this installment are side-characters from the previous Uncharted titles and it helps bring in some background details for the cast. Just keep in-mind that this game doesn’t feature the leading protagonist of the series, Nathan Drake.
#20 What Remains of Edith Finch
What Remains of Edith Finch is a title from developers Giant Sparrow, the team behind The Unfinished Swan. Overall, the video game follows our protagonist as they to explore a colossal house owned by her family. As players learn more of the family history, she begins to discover what happened to each member during their last day alive. It’s up to you as fit together the puzzle pieces which will reveal this family’s history.
Developed by Playdead, creators of the 2010 video game Limbo, players will receive the same feel of tone with Inside. In the game, players take on the role of a young boy who is forced to go through a harsh and dangerous dystopia. Much of the same gameplay mechanics are brought over to Inside from Limbo. With that said, gamers can also expect a dark and gloomy artistic view as you attempt to piece together what’s going on in this disturbing world.
#18 Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture
Set to be a spiritual successor to Dear Esther is Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture. If you’re a fan of walking simulators that puts more of a focus on narrative than gameplay mechanics then we suggest giving this title a go. Overall, players are wandering about in a deserted village as you attempt to track down where all the civilians have gone. As mentioned, there is not too many gameplay mechanics to deal with but there are a few puzzles to solve. Mainly, players will be exploring the world and looking for clues as to what happened prior to your arrival.
#17 Life is Strange
In Life is Strange players take the role of a young adult named Max who is in her senior year of high school after she was accepted into a prestigious academy featuring a desirable photography course. This school actually takes Max back to her hometown of Arcadia Bay, Oregon and it’s with her return that she stumbles upon her past best Friend, Chloe.
Years have passed since Max left with her parents and their friendship slowly chipped away into nothing more than acquaintances. However, one day Max discovers she has a supernatural ability to reverse time and through it, she is able to rekindle her friendship with Chloe. But with all that said, there is something deeper that resides in Arcadia Bay and this game definitely doesn’t hold back. Players will be making some big decisions along the way which will alter the storyline.
#16 Until Dawn
Until Dawn is a PlayStation 4 exclusive and a horror adventure title. Developed by Supermassive Games, Until Dawn follows a group of eight characters who decide to hold a holiday retreat at a cabin within a fictional mountain resort in western Canada.
However, their holiday retreat quickly turns sour as they learn a psycho killer is on the loose forcing our group of eight to survive until sunrise. If you enjoy choice-based video games then this title will be a must play.
Gamers will be able to control the characters at various points in the narrative while making critical choices along the way. Depending on the choices made will alter the narrative and even result in potential characters not making it through the night.
#15 Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice
Hellblade Senuas Sacrifice is a psychological horror hack-and-slash title that follows Senua, a Pict warrior, who must venture into Helheim. Seeking to rescue the soul of her deceased lover, Senua will have to battle a series of otherworldly entities, but with our protagonist suffering from psychosis, the overall world and venture into Helheim may be too much to handle. It’s a hack and slash style game with players battling all sorts of creatures while the gameplay also throws several puzzles at the player to solve.
Firewatch is the debut title for development studio’s Campo Santo. Within the game, players take on the role of a forest fire lookout named Henry. Set back in 1989, Henry’s only form of communication is through a walkie-talkie to another nearby forest fire lookout named Delilah.
Overall, Henry is tasked with maintaining the safety of the forest and preventing forest fires if possible. However, there seems to be something more going out in the woods leading to potential sabotage. During this narrative adventure title, players will discover the reason behind Henry taking a job that essentially secludes him from the outside world.
#13 Little Nightmares
In Little Nightmares, players will be taking on the role of a young girl named Six who had been kidnapped from her home and forced to work at a place known as The Maw, an underwater resort.
The resort caters to the powerful elite, forcing Six to serve their needs. One day, Six is presented with a way back to freedom, though during her journey out of the unpredictable world of The Maw, Six catches the glimpse of the corruption of modern happiness though the journey to freedom is long and treacherous.
#12 Sonic Mania
Sonic the Hedgehog is a staple video game character. Decades have passed and to this day, there are still new Sonic games being pumped out. While some of the more recent releases haven’t fetched the same fame and glory for Sega as the initial launches, there is one title that really became a mega hit.
Sonic Mania is an side-scrolling platformer that fans of the original Sonic the Hedgehog titles are enjoying today. This particular Sonic title returns to the original gameplay and visual art styles. However, gamers can expect new boss fights, expanded levels along with other new elements added in for the franchise.
Developed as their first debut title, Night School Studio released Oxenfree. This is a supernatural adventure video game that puts players into the role of a teenage girl named Alex. It’s within her weekend trip to a local island that events turn for worse leaving her and a group of friends stranded with a mysterious being.
Most of the game is revolved around choices when speaking to the other cast of characters while you explore the island in search for a means to escape. There will also be a few puzzles to solve as well, though the main center of focus is the story. Speaking of the story, the game will give players the ability to go back and replay the narrative a few times as there will be multiple endings available depending on the choices that you make.
#10 Kathy Rain
If you enjoyed point-and-click style adventure games then you may want to look at Kathy Rain. This title was created by Clifftop Games which features a young female going through her final year at a university. However, she learns that her grandfather recently passed away. Despite not having any real association with her family in years, our protagonist Kathy, decides to head back for the funeral. It’s only while attending the funeral that she learns something happened to her father years prior which caused him to become mute.
Kathy decides to stay in town a little while longer in hopes to discover what happened all those years ago to her grandfather. In the process she uncovers something sinister within the small town along with a few mysteries she never knew about her own family tree.
Unravel comes from developers Coldwood Interactive which tells a story of a small yarn figured. Players are tasked with going out to locate memories, but being of yarn, to progress, our protagonist must unravel its yarn to reach new areas.
This is largely a puzzle game as much as it is a platformer. As our yarn figure loses more yarn to reach a new area, gamers must figure out a means to claim more yarn or use what’s available effectively.
#8 A Way Out
A Way Out is an action-adventure journey from Hazelight Studios. This will be the second video game to be directed by Josef Fares who you may be familiar with from his previous title, Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons.
The A Way Out video game is an unique action-adventure title when compared to other selections on this list as it will require two players at all times. Regardless if you play locally or online, the display will be split to showcase both players as you work together to successfully escape your incarceration. Both character stories will be told simultaneously and while one character may be in a cutscene, the other will be able to freely move and execute their tasks making it a game that heavily focuses on teamwork.
#7 A Hat in Time
Developers Gears for Breakfast released a platformer that resembles some of the more beloved platform titles released for the Nintendo 64. A Hat in Time, will play out similarly to Super Mario 64 and Banjo-Kazooie, as there is a heavy emphasis on collecting missing pieces scattered through the game world.
In the overall story, players will take on the role of a young girl named Hat Kid. Hat Kid has the ability to interstellar travel, though during her way home she is intercepted by a Mafia group under control of the evil Mustache Girl.
Stranded, Hat Kid must collect her missing “time pieces” that have been scattered throughout the world before she is able to refuel her ship, but she will be racing against the clock as Mustache Girl and her goons are collecting them as well.
#6 Her Story
Her Story is an indie video game written and directed by Sam Barlow. The video game features live-action police interview footage of a young female and pins the players to solve a murder investigation. Gamers must go through a series of video clips and uncover files that will lead to what really happened to Hannah Smith’s husband just as if you were actually investigating a case.
As a result, gameplay is more of an interactive movie where you’ll watch videos and read files in an attempt to piece this case together. Likewise, this game won’t take players very long with most finishing Her Story within a single sitting of around three hours. After the success of the game, Sam Barlow has begun production of a spiritual successor titled Telling Lies. Supposedly this upcoming release will retain the same overall gameplay mechanics.
#5 Blackwood Crossing
Blackwood Crossing is the debut title for PaperSeven which puts players into the shoes of a young woman named Scarlett. Throughout the game, Scarlett is taking care of Finn, her younger brother though as the game progresses, more and more oddities such as the surroundings begin to change. Ultimately, this takes players to solve a variety of puzzles as they explore moments of Scarlett’s past.
Much like What Remains of Edith Finch, this is yet another shorter adventure title that would be perfect for gamers who like to sit back and enjoy the narrative. Likewise, as you progress the narrative it becomes clear of what is going on around Scarlett and Finn.
#4 Ratchet & Clank
Ratchet & Clank is a classic platformer that many of us remember playing when we were younger. The franchise got its start all the way back on the original PlayStation 2 console and it’s been featured so far on every console released under Sony since.
This current title brought back the iconic platformer for not only veteran fans to enjoy but newcomers as well. It’s still a thrilling adventure title to go through and best of all this can be enjoyed in preparation for Ratchet & Clank’s next big title release, Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart although you will need a PlayStation 5 to enjoy that upcoming installment.
#3 Tearaway Unfolded
Tearaway Unfolded is the retelling of the video game Tearaway on the PlayStation Vita. If you haven’t played the PS Vita title, Tearaway is based around a messenger with a mission to deliver messages but in order to do so, the messenger will have to traverse through obstacle filled areas.
This entire world is constructed by paper leaving some of the environment interactive, for instance on the PS Vita, players were able to use the rear touch panel to give an effect of pushing their fingers through the world in order to progress through certain areas. Now players are able to enjoy an expanded version of the game on the PlayStation 4.
#2 Shovel Knight
Shovel Knight is a 2D sidescroller that resembles the old school days of 8bit video games. The story of Shovel Knight is based around two characters, Shovel Knight and Shield Knight. During one of their journeys, Shield Knight is captured and locked inside the Tower of Fate. Heartbroken, Shovel Knight goes into exile until he hears the Tower of Fate is unsealed thanks to the evil Enchantress who wishes to spread her evil reign across the land.
Hearing the news, Shovel Knight returns to the land in hopes to rescue Shield Knight with his trusty weapon, a shovel. We highly recommend Shovel Knight and there are enough awards and nominations for the game that should sway players into at least trying the game out.
#1 Grow Home
Grow Home comes from the development studio Ubisoft Reflections and was originally developed for an internal release between staff. The only problem is that the game was too much fun and developers decided to go ahead and make the game full release on Windows and PlayStation 4. Players control B.U.D., a robot that is tasked with growing plants to oxygenate the planet. Within Grow Home’s open world, players traverse and plant “Star Shoots” which are giant beanstalks to reach various platforms in order to harvest more seeds.
Hidden Agenda is a crime thriller video game that was developed under Supermassive Games. The title was released back in 2017 where players will take control of Becky Marney and district Attorney Felicity Graves who are on the case of finding the serial killer The Trapper.
This is a short game but it does offer a PlayLink feature where other gamers can join in and vote on decisions that would alter the game. While technically not an online based game, players will need to be connected to a network in order to enjoy the PlayLink feature. Regardless, this is still a fun game to try out with a friend.
Man of Medan
Supermassive Games may be best known for their work on Until Dawn and since then they took that style of gameplay across towards another franchise. Known as The Dark Pictures Anthology, Supermassive Games is developing a series of survival horror titles and the first one to release is Man of Medan. The video game features the branching cinematic choices that you’ll be familiar with in Until Dawn, but instead of being put in a cabin during the dead of winter, players control five characters that are trapped on a haunted ship.
It’s a game that will also allow players to complete the campaign relatively quickly. At the moment, you’re looking at about four hours to beat the campaign. That, of course, is extended if you opt to go through some of the extra content or wish to complete everything the developers have included in the title.