As Malaysians throughout the country are forced to rot at home again thanks to MCO 3.0, many of us would turn to our console games. We have covered mobile games worth playing during lockdown previously, so if smartphones are more of your thing, feel free to check out that article.
Whether you are a frontline trying to relax or another gamer looking to add more games into the never-ending backlog, here are some of our picks for console games to play during MCO 3.0.
Sleeping Dogs – Kick butt while learning Cantonese swear words
Kicking off this list is a cult classic. Sleeping Dogs may look like a Chinese GTA clone at first, but the game is so much more than that.
Players take on the role of Wei Shen, an undercover cop who has to rise up the ranks of the triads in Hong Kong. Just like the image above, combat is ridiculously fun and makes you feel like a Kung Fu movie star. In fact, there are costumes and other easter eggs paying homage to iconic Kung Fu films which grant you unique attacks!
Getting up close and ignoring social distance aside, Hong Kong in Sleeping Dogs looks and feels like the real thing. From roast duck to joss sticks, this sandbox action game will make you feel more gangster than almost any other game.
The PS4 version of Sleeping Dogs is available on the PlayStation Store for only RM 116.
Returnal – Killing aliens stylishly on loop
While the majority of PS5 games feel like sequels, remakes or remasters, Returnal is one of the few new PS5 games that can stand tall amongst the pre-existing franchises. Honestly, it is one of the best games to play on the PS5 right now, and if you find it hard to believe, check out our review.
As a roguelite, it is perfect for junk food sessions, as you can say things like “Wow, I’ve got some time to kill since I don’t have to commute anywhere thanks to the stringent new guidelines on gathering in public and my office’s flexible work-from-home policies, may as well do a quick run of Returnal.”
Even if you’re not necessarily into roguelites, it has great gunplay, gorgeous environments and glorious atmosphere to keep you hooked for hours on end. It’s to the pricey side for its content when you remember most roguelites don’t hit triple-A prices, but if it is your one PS5 game for the lockdown you will definitely have a blast working your way through it.
Returnal is exclusively available on the PS5. The standard edition is priced at RM 299 on the PlayStation Store, but we feel that it is definitely worth it.
Demon’s Souls – The joys of rolling and backstabbing
The other amazing PS5 exclusive is the remake of Demon’s Souls, the Soulsborne what started it all. Just like Returnal, this game is gonna be a difficult one, and full of resetting. Unlike Returnal though, Demon’s Souls has way less RNG and is more about extremely well-designed encounters that you will need to figure out a way around with the tools the game has given you.
The joy of Demon’s Souls is finding out the one or two things that just hard counter what’s around you, such as a Miracle to disable magic turning all the local spellcasters into bell-toting sword fodder, or using a stealth ring to turn what’s supposed to be a really cool boss fight into a laughably one-sided attack on a blind person.
That being said, the downside is that if you are having bad runs, the lockdown is probably only going to worsen your mood. The world of Demon’s Souls is a bleak one where the bad thing is continuously happening, so you might need to take a break if the crushing weight of defeat in a video game starts to combo into the crushing weight of the current global events.
The standard edition of Demon’s Souls is RM 299 on the PlayStation Store.
13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim – Persona meets Pacific Rim
We are willing to bet that you have never heard of this game before. Even though it was shortlisted for The Game Awards, it is clearly not talked about enough given how niche it is.
Older gamers who played Odin Sphere on the PS2 may recognise its art style, especially during cutscenes, since it is made by the same developer. With a pretty incredible interweaving sci-fi story peppered with mecha on kaiju combat, backed by an OST with select tracks made even better with the official The Branched remix / arrange album, you can easily sink 30 – 40 hours of your time into it.
Just be sure to only look up The Branched AFTER you finish the game.
13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim is playable on the PS4, where it costs RM 239 on the PlayStation Store.
Octopath Traveler – Because eight story modes are better than one
While more commonly known as a Switch title, did you know that Octopath Traveler is also available on the Xbox One?
If you have not already played this game, please do. Traditional JRPGs may be a rather old genre, but as the saying goes, “If it ain’t broken, don’t fix it”. Square Enix is somehow surprised that the good ol’ traditional turn-based games can still sell when you have a banging soundtrack and beautiful art to go with.
While we do feel that the story is on the weaker side as the eight titular Travelers barely interact outside of easily missable skits, there is still a lot of the charm and polish that you would expect from a modern-day turn-based RPG. Combat is pretty swell though, and eventually, you will get to break it over your knee with fun job and personal skill combinations.
Octopath Traveler is available for $59.99 on the eShop.
Subnautica – Let’s go for a swim!
As the last game on the list of console games to play during MCO 3.0, Subnautica is the closest replacement you will get to swimming during the lockdown.
While we know that Subnautica: Below Zero launched just recently, we feel that you should definitely try the first game if you have not. The game’s environments and alien planet is vibrant and abundant with life. Every inch of the sea will scratch that exploration itch that you never knew you had. Furthermore, you can also play the game in sandbox mode, letting you build your own underwater bases and submarines without a care in the world.
Sandbox aside, Subnautica is a survival game at its core. It is not a survival horror game like Resident Evil Village, but Subnautica can be downright terrifying. There is always a bigger fish out there, but worst of all, drowning in the game feels legitimately scary.
Whether you want to sink or swim, Subnautica is available on all major consoles. On the PlayStation Store, Subnautica is priced at RM 129.
That wraps up our list of console games to play during MCO 3.0! While the lockdown is annoying, thankfully, we have our video games to keep us company.
Previously, we also recommended roguelikes/roguelites that are great to play during MCO, so if dying again and again is your thing, then feel free to check it out.