The Great Escape: What I’ve Been Playing While Social Distancing

The itch to travel and escape to a different city or country typically hits me between the spring and summer months. I’m always dreaming of new places I haven’t visited or explored yet. Sometimes I may even get nostalgic for the ones I have been to and decide to plan a trip there again. But current events being what they are right now, travel anywhere in the world is out of the question at the moment and maybe for the rest of the year. How the remainder of 2020 will look like in the next 5 or 9 months depends on how soon it will be considered safe to resume normal life again. While I can’t hop a plane to my next exotic destination any time soon, I’ve taken solace in video games for a bit of escapism. The game I have returned to lately is The Legend Of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.

My progress with the game still remains mostly slow. As Link I’ve been taking my time getting to know Hyrule. Breath of the Wild remains my first and only game I’ve ever played so far, which means I’m entering the series with fresh eyes. While I have a few other Zelda games that were given to me as presents long ago, this one has captured my interest the most with its beautiful graphics and open world, nonlinear gameplay. I like that I can play the game however I want without feeling rushed to move onto the next part of the main story. Eventually I’ll want to move on and see how the story ends, but I’m having too much fun letting Link run through the wide expanse of grassy fields or splashing around the crystal clear streams.

I find myself spending hours finding new apple trees to pick clean, herbs to gather, or new animals to hunt for Link’s next dinner. Every time there is an empty pot over a roaring fire, I’m always eager to discover what new dish Link will make when combining all the new items he has stored in his inventory during the times we scoured the land. It might sound kind of boring, and maybe I’m not playing a Zelda game the way most people would, but I find doing all of this peaceful and relaxing during all the uncertainty happening around us right now.

Playing a few hours of Breath of the Wild has been the ultimate escape for me, and has temporarily quenched my desire to navigate new worlds and places unhindered. My latest discovery is the ability to tame wild horses and make them your riding companion. Seeing all the different type of horses I could tame and later register at a stable made me absolutely obsessed with finding a new horse to add to the growing collection of horses I already registered. So far I’ve caught a black, white, and pink horse and named them Midnight, Grace, and Strawberry respectively. Horses are majestic animals and I love that Link can gain their trust to be his loyal steeds for life. I’m living my best life through Link.

We may be living through scary times right now but I’m so lucky that I can step away from all of that to be someone else. Breath of the Wild has been the perfect game to play while self-isolating and it truly does transport me to a place that’s different from my own. A beautiful locale, the promise of adventure, and meeting new people along your journey? This game has got everything a lady like me could ever hope for!

What video game have you been playing during your extended time indoors?

7 thoughts on “The Great Escape: What I’ve Been Playing While Social Distancing

  1. Breath of the Wild is a great choice for times like these. You can’t argue with its beautiful visuals and solid gameplay. And parts of it, like you say, are really relaxing, whether you just want to spend time exploring or picking apples or filling up your stable. 🙂

    In recent weeks, I’ve mostly been playing GTA Online and The Elder Scrolls Online. The former is just fun, silly nonsense for days when thinking is in short supply. The latter is very much like Breath of the Wild – good for exploring and storytelling, taking down dungeon bosses here and there, and collecting anything and everything in sight.

    1. Nice picks! I definitely find fantasy to be my comfort food in these dark times we’re living in. I guess the draw could be that even when a situation seems bleak and impossible, somehow, the hero pulls through and everything turns out okay in the end. Maybe I’m hoping that feeling I get from a video game like Breath of the Wild will translate into our real world situation. I’m remaining optimistic in spite of everything. 🙂

  2. That seems like a great choice. I didn’t play Breath of the Wild, but I watched Rob play it and it looked like such a beautiful world of adventure! It is nice to “get away” right now through video games. I’ve been playing Elder Scrolls Online with Rob. We tried Black Desert first, but then got hooked on ESO. I love that world and it has great little stories to explore through quests. 🙂

    1. Haha, seems like you and Cary have the same thinking for your games of choice. 🙂 As I said in my reply to Cary’s comment, I just think there’s something comforting about fantasy worlds. It certainly ticks off the escape box for sure, but I also think it has the classic “good triumphs over evil” theme that we’re all so desperately craving right now. It’s just nice to see that play out, even if it’s happening in a fictional world.

  3. For me, it’s all about Animal Crossing and Persona 5 Royal. Having so much control over how my island looks has got me kind of obsessing over it. As for Persona, the game was excellent the first time around and it’s even better now. They’ve added so many interesting extras and changes that it’s been fun just discovering them all.

    1. Haha, I think Animal Crossing is just about everyone’s game of choice for a great escape during this pandemic. I can see why. There’s a lot to do in Animal Crossing and it kind of adds a sense of normalcy in a world that’s currently not running the way it should right now.

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