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When the outbreak of the novel coronavirus made us all house-ridden even those who thought they’ll never be gamers have discovered the value these virtual worlds have to offer. With the popularity of video games hitting the roof, it’s normal that everyone wants to join in the fun.

So, you’ve purchased an Xbox, but just one look at those numerous buttons and dual joysticks is enough to make you regret that decision. The sheer number of games at your disposal is equally intimidating.

But entering the gaming realm is like entering any other – by making the first step. That’s why we’ve put together a list of easy Xbox games that will be perfect to induct any curious beginner.

Regaining a Sense of Control

If you feel like you’re losing control over your life in these COVID-19 times, installing The Sims 4 and plunging into a virtual non-quarantine existence is the best way to regain it. This world-famous life simulator has no standard levels, battles, bosses, puzzles – just a plain old everyday life with all its delights and challenges. Being in control of everything involving your Sims family, from their careers to their love lives, you’ll soon realize the pressing feeling of helplessness will begin to evaporate. 

The Narrative

Telltale Games, is a well-known games developer that released a collection of games for the Xbox platform, that included such famous TV-sourced titles as The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones, along with their very own The Wolf Among Us. The different narrative paths of these interactive episode-based and movie-style games will unfold and progress based on your choices.

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What makes Telltale Games’ output great for beginners is the lack of skill required for such an interactive experience. All of the episodes are mostly comprised of exploring small locations and different dialogue options. Action scenes simply require you to react fast and press the right buttons, which is pretty easy to get a hang of. Narrative choices are enriched with some puzzle-solving, and even if you get stuck, you’ll receive step-by-step instructions from other characters and continue to progress. 

A Roll of the Dice

One thing that can’t be simulated is the thrill of betting real money. Luckily, Xbox also has a solution for that. Just a few years ago the platform offered only a couple of casino-based games without the ability to bet real money, but today you can use it to play in real online casinos. Right after loading up the browser on your Xbox, you’ll be able to enjoy a wide variety of casino games. If you’re a beginner to games of chance, the colorful diversity of slots will guarantee countless hours of fun, and even when you explored all the local options, you can cast your net wider to include international offerings like those found at online casino NZ.

Meditative Journeys

Most of us spent 2020 having our movements restricted, unable to leave the country or take an annual vacation. As such, any kind of journey or escape is welcomed, but Journey and Abzu offer something completely unexpected. Exploring the worlds of these two games is a meditative experience – the gorgeous art and haunting soundtrack will fill you with a sense of awe and wonder. 

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In Journey, you’ll explore a mesmerizing desert of otherworldly beauty, slowly discovering the ruins of an ancient civilization. There are some obstacles along the way, but the game’s engine is clever enough to figure out if you prefer exploring over problem-solving and will allow you to pass the levels with greater ease. The unique multiplayer mode will enable you to connect with other players in an almost mythical way.

In Abzu, the exploration takes place in the vast ocean’s depths, inhabited by a variety of breathtaking sea creatures you can travel with. As in Journey, you’ll also find traces of ancient civilizations, but this one will have greatly advanced technology. The meditative beauty of this game also lies in the apparent lack of either a goal or motivation of your character, so a unique narrative always forms in the mind of the player. Although this may sound pointless, exploring every inch of that boundless aimlessness is a feast for the eyes and just the kind of freedom we all need right now. 

New Horizons

Firewatch offers up a different level of engagement. Set in 1989, in Shoshone National Forest, Wyoming, the game explores coming to terms with painful events in our lives, seeing the other side of the negative, glimpsing hope. Your character has accepted the duties of the fire watch, a diversion from dealing with his wife’s illness. 

This game doesn’t require any level of skill since it is mostly comprised of walks through the forest and occasional talks over the radio. What makes the game noteworthy are the small decisions made (like the ability to either wear or not your wedding ring) that influence your character’s progress and the story, going forward. 

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Endless Possibilities

If you still don’t understand the global craze for Minecraft, the attraction of this game lies in the fact that this 3D virtual sandbox offers endless possibilities to exercise your imagination. It is practically an ode to creativity, shown by the fact that it’s also used as an educational tool

Although the crux of the game is about building shelters and survival, the ultimate goal can be anything you make it – from simply exploring the environment to building magnificent cities. Here, your gameplay skills take a back seat to the most important factor in Minecraft – your creativity. Living in a world that at times seems like it’s crumbling in front of our eyes, the ability to build and create endlessly makes this one of the best antidotes to the everyday.

The above-listed games are just a handful of titles available for the Xbox platform. Our goal was to provide you with those that have, apart from the low entry-barrier, the ability to uplift your mood during these difficult times. There is no wrong choice, and we wish you the happiest of gaming.