Whether it’s convincing your other half or your relatives, chances are, you too have used the excuse “just one more game” during your gaming career. I think we all have, to be honest. We’ve all tested the patience of our loved ones for one more quick session before surrendering to the guilt that loiters over our shoulders. Be it a deathmatch on Call of Duty, a side-quest on Cyberpunk 2077, or just “one more” game of FIFA; we’re always trying to cram in as much as possible before shutting down our consoles for the day. Whether it’s midnight or midday — we’re usually prone to power on for minutes that evolve into hours. And that’s perfectly normal.
While games are growing into dangerously-lengthy domains, there are still mounds of shorter titles that can be completed in a matter of hours. Of course, that’s perfect for any gamer who’s just on the hunt for a quick game that won’t be too demanding. Whether it be a story-rich experience or a basic walking simulator — there are always games you can discover that won’t tax you of your entire weekend. Just take these five, for example. All you’ll need here is a few spare minutes and a hunger for the checkered flag. Oh, and a whole basket of skill. You’re definitely going to need that.
5. Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
Okay, so there’s a reason why we’re putting Skyrim on this list, despite the fact that not every gamer can complete the main questline in under sixty minutes. However, it is worth pointing out that, well — it can actually be beaten insanely quick. But this one definitely isn’t for the faint-hearted. In fact, unless you’ve already poured at least a hundred hours into Skyrim beforehand and quite literally know the mechanics like the back of your own hand — then you won’t stand a chance at tackling this one. Oh, and did I forget to mention that you’d be level 1 when you fight Alduin? But, I mean — don’t let that put you off or anything.
While Skyrim in its entirety is enormous and packed full of spin-off quest chains and fascinating lore that beckons to be unearthed, it is possible to bypass the bulk of it and head straight for the finish line. Of course, we wouldn’t recommend it to anyone looking to fully immerse in the tale of the Dragonborn and the many wonders of Skyrim. But we would, however, recommend it to any speedrunner looking to load another challenge under their belts. That being said, this probably wouldn’t be the easiest starting point for your career. Who knows? You might just surprise yourself at how well you know Skyrim after all.
4. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
Similar to Skyrim, Hyrule was designed to be explored with a fine-tooth comb. With hundreds of combined shrines, memories, korock seeds and towers to discover and unearth, Breath of the Wild was clearly built to give the player enough to stay busy both pre and post-credits. That being said, even with the hundreds of hours of content to experience, Hyrule can in fact be reclaimed from the vengeful Ganon in under an hour.
As with most titles that hand you a final showdown on a silver platter from the get-go, players can expect a serious challenge if the conclusion is the only destination on the agenda. That essentially means that if you’re an inexperienced player and new to the series, then you’re probably going to flatline pretty quick. If, however, you know the platform and are able to adapt to Hyrule from the moment you fill Link’s shoes, then you might just stand a chance at reclaiming the kingdom before the sunset touches the apex of Mount Hylia.
Like most puzzle-platformers, each chunk of gameplay is designed to keep you scratching your head over and over again until you finally reach the finale. And that works wonders for anyone who’s looking to immerse themselves in a fascinating world where every obstacle must be mapped out and overcome with great delicacy. But is it suitable for speedrunners? No, no it isn’t.
While INSIDE can technically be completed in under sixty minutes, it would take a player of great skill to beat each portion without succumbing to the spontaneous difficulty spikes. That’s why we strongly suggest you play the game like everybody else: in under three hours, and at a steady pace where no stone is left unturned. And, if that doesn’t prove to be too much of a challenge — then you can give the sixty-minute sprint a whirl. Just expect a few hiccup attempts along the way, though.
Seeing as we’re on the lines of the puzzle-platformer genre — it seems only right that we shed a little light on our beloved Portal. With its humorous approach to problem-solving and trial and error gameplay, it feels as though GLaDOS and the labyrinth of puzzle clusters are incredibly ripe for this list. Plus, they’re also beatable in under sixty minutes — should the pad fall into a rather skilled set of mitts, that is.
On average, you can expect to sail through the Aperture Science Facility in just over 3 hours. Of course, that’s taking into account all of the wandering about, as well as actually solving the various puzzles scattered through the ashen white network. But should you be hungering for the showdown and an overall escape strategy from the get-go, then you can pretty much tackle both Portal entries in under sixty minutes or less. Or maybe even fifteen minutes, as many speedrunners have demonstrated. But hey, baby steps, baby steps. One portal at a time, people.
1. Gone Home
With a game as story-rich as Gone Home, the last thing you want to do is plough through the adventure and cut every corner along the way. In fact, with the narrative inviting the player to explore every nook and cranny of the old crooked home, the last thing you feel like doing is pursuing an ending before the lore has been sewn together to form a complete picture. That’s the beauty behind this simplistic walking simulator: it draws you to paint the picture without putting too much pressure on your shoulders.
With all of that in mind, there is a shortcut one can take to obtain the end results without having to listen to ninety-five per cent of the story. Of course, with a game as emotionally riveting as Gone Home, we’d only suggest you bypass the story after experiencing it in its entirety. But yes, it is possible to complete the game in less than sixty seconds. All you need is a keen eye for detail and a whole boatload of persistence. And hey, if you do manage to beat the game in under a minute, you’ll even walk away with a nice 100G/Bronze trophy. Surely that’s got to be one of the quickest achievements you’ll ever get your hands on, right?
In the mood for a few more lists like this? You could always take a look at these: