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15 Short (But Great) Games You Can Finish In A Few Hours

Updated September 21, 2020 88 votes 24 voters15 items

List RulesVote up the short games you can finish in one sitting.

Starting a new game is a lot like starting a new relationship: it requires dedication, patience, and definitely a lot of practice. Considering the state of the world, gamers have more time to stay home and play than ever. Some players may be using this time to grind through that epic adventure they've been itching to break into, but not everyone is down for the slog through 300+ hours of gameplay. The good news is that the games industry is incredibly varied, and therefore has tons of shorter experiences that are equally as enjoyable. If you're someone who prefers to keep their gaming sessions brief, check out our list of fast games you can finish in a day.

While some playthroughs may take a little longer, you'll likely be able to finish all these quick games in under 10 hours (excluding completionist times where players squeeze out every possible second of content), so you never have to be worried about losing track of which side quest you were on or why the big baddie is even mad at you in the first place.

From mysterious puzzle platformers to heart-warming narrative adventures to shooters that will get your blood pumping, there's a little something here for everyone. Check out some of the best fastest games ever made, and vote up all the ones you'd had a blast — albiet brief — time blazing through.

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  • Portal 2
    Photo: Valve

    Average Playtime: 8.5 hours

    Average Completionist Playtime: 20.5 hours

    Portal 2 is considered one of the best games of all time, and for good reason — the writing is impeccable, the puzzles are challenging and rewarding, and the overgrown, underground world of Aperture Labs is endlessly engaging. In a rare case of a sequel actually improving upon its predecessor, Portal 2 builds on what made the original great and adds in brand new mechanics that feel intuitive and that fit into the world. Given the fact that Portal 2 not only has incredibly tight game design, but also has lovable and memorable characters, this is one you're likely to be thinking about for days after you've finished it.

    • Release: 2011
    • Developer: Valve Corporation
    • Genres (Video game): Action-adventure game, Puzzle game, Platform game
    14
    2
    A blast to play?
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  • Firewatch
    Photo: Campo Santo

    Average Playtime: 4 hours

    Average Completionist Playtime: 5 hours

    If you've been spending a lot of time indoors and find yourself craving some fresh mountain air (at least in digital form), Firewatch is an excellent option. You play as Henry, a man who runs from his troubles by becoming a fire lookout in the wilderness of Wyoming. Of course, not everything is as it seems, so Henry and his supervisor Delilah, who you interact with via walkie-talkie, try to unravel the mystery. Between beautiful landscapes, an intriguing narrative, and some of the best voice acting the games industry has ever seen, Firewatch makes for the perfect escape.

    • Release: 2016
    • Developer: Campo Santo
    • Genres (Video game): Adventure
    12
    5
    A blast to play?
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  • The Stanley Parable
    Photo: Galactic Cafe

    Average Playtime: 1.5 hours

    Average Completionist Playtime: 7 hours

    Originally released as a mod for Half-Life 2, The Stanley Parable is a mind-bending, self-aware adventure walking simulator. A disembodied voice is narrating the game and reacts to the choices the player makes along the way. The original game had six different endings, and a remake added an additional 10, so there's plenty of reasons to replay over and over again. If you're looking for a witty and insightful game that also has some pretty interesting commentary on player choice and decision making, The Stanley Parable is a great way to kill some time.

    • Release: 2011
    • Genres (Video game): Adventure
    7
    0
    A blast to play?

    More The Stanley Parable 

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  • Inside
    Photo: Playdead

    Average Playtime: 3.5 hours

    Average Completionist Playtime: 4.5 hours

    Certainly one of the spookier games on this list, Inside is a great option for anyone who loves the dark and mysterious. It's a puzzle platformer that drops you into a dystopian world where you have to make your way through a creepy factory, and of course, try not to die. Released by the same studio that made the equally spooky indie darling Limbo, Inside delivers as the perfect follow-up for those who just can't get enough puzzler games that lean into a Burton-esque eeriness.

    • Release: 2016
    • Developer: Playdead
    • Genres (Video game): Puzzle-platformer, adventure
    7
    0
    A blast to play?
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