Three weeks ago I caught a severe case of the flu. I had a fever the first week and those awful hot flashes, waking up in the middle of the night soaked in sweat and bemoaning death to just take me already (I'd had enough. - "SWEET LORD MAKE IT END"). Okay maybe I’m being a bit melodramatic, but you get my drift. The sweating was a constant annoyance. Gamer Goo helped my hands, of course, but I wasn’t about to cover my entire back and neck in it. I was out of work but couldn’t gather the strength to do much of anything besides lay there and moan in pain. I couldn’t read (even my eyeballs hurt), and TV just annoyed me for some reason. But around day 4 I started playing Super Smash Bros Ultimate with my Gamer Goo hands and took in the full breadth of the mindless joy of gaming, bouncing around as Zero-Suit Samus & actually forgetting (for a few precious moments at a time) that I felt like I'd been run over by a semi. I had found a tiny glimmer of comfort, and I wasn’t about to let it go!
Below are the other games I played, and highly recommend the next time you’re incapacitated by a virus hell-bent on destroying your life. These are relaxing/mindless games that give me lots of joy, so don’t expect anything innovative or ~unique~ on today’s list, just good ole recycled fun. So drink lots and lots of water (or Pedialyte if you’re fancy), whip out the Gamer Goo so you won’t soak the controller (ew), take your meds, and get gaming!
Stardew Valley – Look, I’m a simple gal when I’m sick. I’m not about to be doing frustrating puzzles or complicated story-lines. Give me an endless amount of days to plan and build the most magnificent farm in the valley & several single townsfolk to flirt with & I’m golden. Stardew Valley really is the ultimate in relaxation. Watering the farm is almost meditative. I love fishing, getting prepared for the festivals and dances, gifting baked goods, and mining all day. And as for those single townsfolk, who exactly will my avatar Mima marry? I've been putting it off for ages. I was leaning towards depressed + alcoholic Shane because he really has warmed up & become a sweet fellow (plus he's easy to indulge with pints of beer), but I have to keep reminding Mima you can’t fix people. I mean, have you seen the garbage dump that is his bedroom? TRUST me.
Donkey Kong: Tropical Freeze – When I was little I played Donkey Kong Country so much I had the whole game memorized and timed perfectly so I could fly through it. Legit played it a few years ago and still had my groove. I am now 30 & Tropical Freeze kicks my ass. I'm not sure if this is the norm either or if I'm just really terrible at it, but I don't care to find out. Let me live in ignorance on this one, okay? It was perfect to play while sick because my attention span was even shorter than normal, and DK: Tropical Freeze is the type of game I can handle in small doses only. I'd get irrationally angry when I'd die over and over (& therefore worse at the game), and then had to turn it off. Usually, if I waited like an hour, calmed myself, took a deep breath, and got back on, I’d get over whatever obstacle I was having trouble with in usually the first try. Patience is key in DK, and I have less of it now that I’m older, but when I’m sick I will go back to it because afterwards I get to take an anger-induced fatigue nap, and those are fabulous.
Super Smash Bros Ultimate – Just want to formally talk about this. Anyone else pissed off about how difficult the challengers become to beat the further in the game you get? Like, nearly impossible to beat? Anyway, besides that annoyance, it’s 100% a great game to play while sick because there's not much to it & any button combo you push is gonna make for some interesting moves. I'm not saying you can't strategize, but you can also actively choose not to and still have loads of fun. Zero-Suit Samus is my girl most of the time, but Link has my heart too because I'm absurdly loyal to Legend of Zelda.
GTA: V Online – I know, could I be any more cliche with these choices? But GTA is the ultimate in mindless gaming experiences for me. I wish there was a better solo mode because I do like to avoid all human interaction at times & 10 year old's that troll me with grenade launchers – BUT I digress. There is nothing more satisfying than climbing the tallest building you can find and sniping NPCs or driving with reckless abandon. I am hoping for GTA: VI soon though because I have the San Andreas map memorized & need new territory to explore. Arena War is cool and all, but come on Rockstar, it's been 6 years. Give us Vice or Liberty City again!
Mortal Kombat XL – Again, here we have another fighting game that’s perf to play while sick because you can just mash a bunch of button combos and do cool moves by accident even if you aren't trying that hard. But when you do try hard it really is amazing. Mortal Kombat has never really moved beyond the insane over-the-top violence & bizarre plot-lines of 80's/90's action, which is 100% what we all want, amiright? (Speaking of the 90's, recently I re-watched the movie and it's incredible. Christopher Lambert as Raiden is one of the best casting decisions ever made as far as I'm concerned).
Well, it’s been 3 weeks that this virus has ravaged my internal organs and I’m still coughing up gross stuff & going to bed way earlier than normal. But I do feel a little better, and I can tell because I'm in the mood for challenging puzzles & games again. If you’re feeling low or in the midst of a terrible cold or flu, I hope you find some comfort in gaming, whether it be with my mindless recs or not. Hope all of us sickos feel better soon. Don’t forget your Gamer Goo (good for preemptive flu season planning too btw). Treat yo' self to some (& also Emergen-C)!