Time… It’s become such a valuable commodity for many of us that we base all of our daily activities around how much time we have to spare. I’m sure we’ve all had to cut something out of our daily routine just because there’s not enough time. When you’re a young adult like me, with a full time job and other responsibilities, it’s honestly quite hard to find time to play video games, which is a pity because I love video games. This list is designed to show you which game genres take the most time to play through, starting with the least.
When I think of platformers, I think of games such as Super Mario World, Kirby, and Mega Man. These types of games are typically broken down into individual levels or stages that you must complete. Often, you are given the opportunity to save your game after a stage, meaning that you can shut it off afterwards if you are out of time. Also, these types of games are fairly short. Megan can beat Super Mario World in just a couple of hours, whereas I… I’ll get back to you on that.
6. Third-person Shooter/Action
We go from cutesy looking character sprites to hardcore action and destruction. For this genre, I’m thinking of examples like Max Payne and Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, just to give you an idea. These games are also broken down into stages commonly referred to as “missions”, and they’re usually longer than your typical Mega Man stage. They’re almost always action-packed, so it can be easy to lose track of time. Luckily, these games are also fairly short. If you’re skilled like anyone but me, you can get through Max Payne 3 in an eight-hour day.
5. Turn-based Strategy games
SO manly different types of strategy games. It’s such a popular genre, but for this entry, I’m thinking of games like Disgaea, Final Fantasy Tactics, Fire Emblem, and Gungnir. In these sorts of games, you control a party of characters and have to eliminate enemy forces and usually meet some sort of condition during the battle. Typically, you control all your characters, then the enemy gets to make their move. Games in this genre can be pretty lengthy and can take up several hours of your time if you’re not careful.
4. Real-time Strategy games
The next type of strategy game we have on the list is Real-time strategy. For this genre, picture games such as Age of Empires and Starcraft. In these games, you have to build up your forces by collecting resources and upgrading units. This genre ranks higher than the turn-based strategy because while some of the battles may be short, others can take several hours if you have evenly matched forces with the enemy. This can make it a very time consuming game genre.
3. Turn-based RPG / J-RPG
For this genre, I’m turning to one of the most well-known turn-based RPG series to date: Final Fantasy. You knew it was coming, didn’t you? As soon as you saw the title and, your mind immediately went to thinking of Final Fantasy. These games are known for having a very in-depth story-line and can often span multiple CDs/DVDs worth of content, containing hours upon hours of gameplay. The average playtime of a turn-based RPG can be anywhere between 18 and 36 hours, and even the cut scenes of these games can be quite lengthy. So before you pick up one of these games, make sure you have nothing else planned for the day. Now you may be asking “If these games are so long, why aren’t they higher on the list?” Well, keep reading, my friend.
2. Epic RPGs / Action RPGs
Do the titles “Skyrim” and “Fallout 3” ring a bell? Yes, these little gems are notorious for being long games, and for good reason. You have vast worlds to explore, epic quests to complete, and many game-people to talk to. These games give you a lot to do, and keep you busy, so it’s very easy to lose track of time. The other day I had picked up Skyrim to record some gameplay, and *poof*, 3 hours were gone. These games are immensely fun to play, but can take up many days worth of precious time. Personally, I’ve logged a total of about 160 hours in Skyrim so far, though that pales in comparison to some people. Surely this is one of the most time-consuming genres, but there’s one more on the list…
For the maybe 7 of you who don’t know, MMORPG stands for “Massively-Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game”. We don’t call it that though, because it takes up precious time that we could be spending playing games. So we call them MMORPGs for short. World of Warcraft, I’m lookin’ at you. Games like these are often pay-to-play, meaning you pay a monthly fee to keep playing. This genre is the most time-consuming game genre because people have lost jobs and spouses due to how immersive the games can be. You can spend countless hours on these games, and may even become addicted if you don’t moderate how much time you spend on them. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not one of those people who try to get MMORPGs banned because of how addictive they can be. I happened to spend a lot of time playing Guild Wars, and enjoyed it. Just don’t let them take control of your lives, because they will.
Runner Up: Minecraft (and other open world building/digging games)
What “Time consuming game genres” list wouldn’t be complete without everyone’s favorite building/mining sandbox game? Minecraft is endless. Sure you can beat the Ender Dragon, but you’ll still be compelled to keep playing. Must be something about being able to manipulate an entire world with nothing more than a few pickaxes and shovels. Problem is, I didn’t know what genre to describe this game as. Perhaps one day it will be its own genre. Minecraft is time consuming because you can spend hours just wandering through caverns, looking for rare minerals. It didn’t rank on the final list because it pretty much falls under it’s own genre, and that wouldn’t be fair now, would it?
So this little list should give you a general idea of what types of games to play given the amount of time you have to spend. I know I left out several game genres, such as racing, fighting, etc., but this wasn’t meant to be a comprehensive list of game genres. Maybe that will be a list for another day.