End of Year 2018: Favorite Timeout Game


Favorite Timeout Game

Call it escapism, self care, winding down, your ‘podcast game,’ the name doesn’t matter, not really. Everyone has a game they turn to when they need to take some time away from the world and recharge.

These are games we can effectively use as a ‘Time Out’ from all the things the World is throwing at us on a day to day basis. While these outlets are as varied as their players, this category is for you to tell us what game experiences of 2018 helped ease your worries, hold your focus, and, as the category says, take some time for yourself. Some might be relaxing and wandering, others might have an intensity that you can only navigate when you’re in the zone. Either way, we want to hear about the games that help you get away from it all when that’s exactly what’s needed.

Your vote might just help someone else find their new break.

Nomination Submissions

[click here for access to the submission form]

You will have until 5th January to nominate your games – this is our cut-off ahead of polling going live.

Remember: you can nominate up to three games, so be creative with your choices!

Be sure to check the Q&A section below if you have questions, otherwise feel free to reach out to one of us! We hope you enjoy this event and we’re excited to see what sorts of discussion each category inspires!


Q: End of Year? What's that?

A: I’m glad you asked! Just head over to our pinned topic if you need a catch up! You can also find details on the process for the event here.

Q: How do I nominate a game?

A: To nominate a game, head on over to our google form and write down your submissions in the appropriate field. You may nominate up to three games and you will be able to edit this submission at any time by returning to the google form (before the nomination date closes).

As the nominations will be done externally, this thread will instead be the place to discuss what your favorites were and to make the case for them if you feel strongly. We welcome thoughtful posts about how you made your decision, as long as we keep it positive and respectful.

Q: When does the nomination process end?

A: The period of time to make your nominations will end January 5th, 2019.

Q: What games can I nominate?

A: For this category, we’re specifically looking for games that were released between 10th December 2017 - 15th December 2018.

Games that either entered Early Access or hit 1.0 during this period are eligible.

Ports, remakes, and remasters are not eligible.

Standalone games/expansions are eligible, however Downloadable Content (DLC) is not.

Mobile and browser games are eligible as long as they meet all other relevant criteria.

The moderation team reserves the right to remove any game from nomination if necessary.

  • Thank you to @Emily for the banner!

End of Year 2018: Waypoint Community's Favorites
The 2018 Waypoint Community List of Lists
End of Year 2018: Vote for your favs!

I’m going to go ahead and nominate Call of Duty Black Ops IIII.

It’s honestly just kind of relaxing to play a straightforward shooter that doesn’t have to involve coordinating with your team. You can just hop in and shoot people and hey even if you lose the match the numbers still go up and you unlock stuff.

I would also like to nominate Pokemon Let’s Go but it is technically a remake/remaster of Yellow but it is also very different compared to the original so I would like an official mod ruling before I submit :stuck_out_tongue:

Magic The Gathering Arena also just came out and although I’ve only played a bit of it I can see myself getting sucked in the coming year and it seems like the perfect kind of game to just throw a podcast or some music on and play a few rounds.


Just something to reiterate and make clear – make sure to put your nominations in the Google Form! If you put them here alone, they will not be totalled in our nominations tally – so get them in there too! (I think Wazanator was waiting for our ruling but we want to make this as crystal clear as possible to avoid people not being counted).

Pokémon Let’s Go is definitely eligible for this – I think you’re being a little tongue-in-cheek, but just wanted to clear it up here.

While we have a specific category for re-releases, we’d welcome folks to ask to clarify the point. There are a few games this year which skirt the border of ‘re-release’ and ‘new game’ – Let’s Go is such a change from the original that it is, as you say, mostly ‘technically’ a remake. The other game that jumps to mind is Yakuza Kiwami 2, which is heavily based on Yakuza 2 but is markedly different from the original. We feel that both cases should be considered for both, although we’d encourage folks to ask first if in doubt.


Yoku’s Island Express was a deeply relaxing experience for me. A lovely mixture of pinball and some metroidvania-style wandering about made for something I could very easily mentally check out while enjoying. It’s a good length and never pushes you forward too aggressively, and was a great palate cleanser between bigger, more demanding releases.


Destiny 2 is, to me, basically “Video Game: The Video Game” and with Forsaken, it’s better than ever. Seems only natural to nominate it.


It turns out that it’s my nomination here for precisely those reasons. (Even though it’s technically in open beta.)


Might sound odd, but when I was kind of spinning my wheels for an escape I found myself booting up Northgard a ton. Maybe something about the way that, despite being an RTS, it has a much more casual pace about it. Unless you’re playing on a harder difficulty (a fun challenge in its own right) or one of the missions that have a bit of a timer, I found I could kind of muddle my way through it while also watching or listening to something and not worry too much about my play. And the art and general aesthetic is pleasing as well—it often came across to me as being able to escape to a calm, muted winter landscape that I miss from my youth.


I’m going to nominate Kingdom: Two Crowns. It’s a beautifully simple micro-strategy and survival game. The pixel art is gorgeous, with small lovely animations and a river running through the bottom of the screen, reflecting everything around you. The UI is clear of clutter, the game is free from tutorial, letting you learn on your own. It’s relaxing to travel through the forest on horseback, gathering resources and subjects, expanding your borders and defending against the nightly Greed attacks. I play this with some ASMR playing on my phone beside me and it’s a nice break.


Tetris Effect

I’m feeling chill just thinking about it.

Edit: does this count as a remake? Feels like it could go either way.


While the core mechanics have decades of history, it is not really directly re-creating pre-existing game (also it has new mechanics such as the zone and ability to switch out pieces) so it would count as a new game.


Minecraft’s aquatic update came out this year, but I don’t think that really counts for a nomination. And anyway, it’s not the particular update that makes it my “timeout game”. I always find enjoyment circling back to Minecraft every 2 or 3 years, starting up a new solo survival mode game, and seeing what’s new.

Going through all the motions of finding a spot to build a base, delving deeper and deeper into caves and mines for better resources, and forging out with maps to chart my surroundings… all of that is really comforting for me, even when I get to the point where I’m stepping around lava to find diamond or creeping through the nether.

Minecraft communicates a lot with audio but it mixes just fine with a podcast playing over it. So, Minecraft is my favorite Timeout Game I played a lot of in 2018, even if it’s not a 2018 game :stuck_out_tongue:


I already said Tetris Effect, but then I was standing in line at the DMV yesterday and pulled out Holedown for about the 200th time this year and realized that was my real answer.


I got kind of weirded out when I realized my most played game of 2018 by a very large margin was FIFA 19 because I literally know nothing about football? I’m here for the cutiepies and pop music.

FIFA 17 was, for me, the perfect reintroduction to the series since they included The Journey, a charming single player story mode following Alex Hunter, an up-and-coming English footballer with a predictable, but heartwarming story. The soundtrack for that year was especially sweet, though 18 and 19 also have nicely curated playlists of offbeat pop and hip-hop.

Having learned the basics through The Journey, I find myself turning to FIFA whenever I need to zone out for an hour or two. I’m currently playing Career mode and I’m basically Kuroko, I love it.


Hey folks!

With the deadline for phase 1 fast approaching we wanted to remind everyone to get their nominations in if they haven’t already. The google forms will stop taking submissions by 10pm GMT (2pm PST / 5pm EST) on Saturday.

That said, these threads will remain open so that people can continue to share their thoughts on specific categories/games for the remainder of the event. We hope you’ve enjoyed the event thus far and we’re excited to unveil the the voting phase over the weekend!