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Video Games You Need To Play If You're Tired Of Basic, Mainstream Trash  

Nathan Gibson
719 votes 218 voters 5.2k views 15 items

List Rules Vote up the video games everyone should be playing.

As with other forms of entertainment, there are some vastly underrated video games most people will never play. See, the vast majority of people will stick to the blockbuster video game titles they were introduced to when they first picked up a controller. These tried and tested titles continue to find success because players know exactly what they'll get.

The truth is, though, many of these AAA titles are average at best. There is a whole world of next level video games you need to play. Whether they are indie releases made by small teams, or a bigger budget titles people just overlooked, there are plenty of better versions of popular video games. They move on from the basic stuff you would normally see, and introduce some truly wonderful ideas and innovative, genre-bending concepts. So, if you're tired of playing the same old games over and over again, check out some of these titles.

Subnautica Is A Better Exploration Game Than No Man’s Sky
Subnautica Is A Better E... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Video Games You Need To Play If You're Tired Of Basic, Mainstream Trash
Photo:  Unknown Worlds Entertainment/Hello Games

Subnautica and No Man’s Sky might not look alike superficially, but both games are essentially all about exploration. While No Man’s Sky had a big budget and huge marketing campaign behind it, it left players largely unimpressed. Subnautica, on the other hand, is a more engaging game that is far less repetitive.

Since areas and creatures are not procedurally generated, actual care has been taken with where things go and how they work. Ultimately, the underwater title lets you leave a genuine mark on the world with your actions, while you just seem to be a galactic passerby in No Man’s Sky.

Dying Light Is A Better Parkour Game Than Mirror’s Edge
Dying Light is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Video Games You Need To Play If You're Tired Of Basic, Mainstream Trash
Photo:  Techland/EA

Even though the Mirror's Edge series has attracted a dedicated set of fans, it has failed to live up to its potential in both incarnations. The idea of a first-person game based around parkour certainly has promise, but DICE and EA could not deliver. One other game, however, has taken essons learned from Mirror’s Edge and built on them. That game is Dying Light.

Containing many of the same elements as the EA franchise, this zombie title added exciting combat, a day-night cycle that changed gameplay, and many other ways to interact with the large open world. Mirror’s Edge just cannot compete with the innovative gameplay mechanics included in Dying Light. When you add in the much more detailed world (and zombies), and compare it to the bland environments in EA’s offering, it becomes clear who the winner is.

More Dying Light

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Cities: Skylines Is A Much Deeper Experience Than SimCity
Cities: Skylines Is A Mu... is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Video Games You Need To Play If You're Tired Of Basic, Mainstream Trash
Photo:  Paradox Interactive /EA

SimCity has always been the standard-bearer of the city simulation genre, but the 2013 offering hit a few sour notes with longtime fans. One game filled the void, despite the fact it is still relatively unknown: Cities: Skylines. It isn’t just that the game looks and runs much better than its EA counterpart, Cities: Skylines is without a doubt a much deeper and more complicated simulation.

Each inhabitant of a city has their own life to lead, including a family and a schedule. Cities only evolve and grow through meticulous planning, requiring the player to actually think about what they are doing. The interesting mechanics behind traffic management mean that you can come up with thousands of solutions to a problem by creating new roads, while extensive modding capabilities give players the option of changing up the experience. Add to that a tremendous map, and Cities: Skylines is essentially everything that SimCity should have been for half the price.

Sheltered Is Far More In-Depth Than Fallout Shelter
Sheltered Is Far More In... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Video Games You Need To Play If You're Tired Of Basic, Mainstream Trash
Photo:  Team17/Bethesda

Sheltered is a better game than Fallout Shelter, both because of the level of complexity and the choice available to players. Unlike the free-to-play title from Bethesda, Sheltered puts you in charge of just a few inhabitants, rather than an entire vault. This provides an opportunity to have a more meaningful relationships with both the characters you play as and come across in the wild.

The management of your shelter is also a much more in-depth system, with everything from waste management to the cleanliness of the underground dwelling coming into play. Whereas Fallout Shelter is a game you might play for a few brief moments a day, Sheltered engages your full attention when playing, and will keep you occupied for hours.