It’s time for another efficient gaming short list. We got away from this series while we covered other topics but it’s time for an update. As always, we highlight games that offer a lot of value in comparison to time invested. If you only have a few hours to game each day, these games offer a lot in return (and often have convenient save options with “pick up and play” value).
Link: Forza 6 Amazon Platform: Xbox One Game Type: Racing Simulation Format: Single / Multi / Online Cost: ~$33.00 USD Avg Session Time: ~20 minutes to 2 hours
Forza 7 was just released but that shouldn’t diminish the excellent value of Forza 6 (F6). When you consider the micro-transaction debacle of the most recent title, version six looks even better. When F6 was released, it was the best the series had ever been (and possibly still is). Primarily a simulation racing game, it features over 400 authentic/licensed cars and 26 real world tracks. The thing I like about F6 more than any other racing game I have played is the accessibility. It’s a “simulation” in the sense of the term (realistic traction, weather, vehicle dynamics) but is built from the ground up to appeal to a wide variety of motorsport fans. You won’t find any “arcade” modes in Forza 6 but the simulation aspects can be adjusted and tweaked to make the game easier or harder. Building a grand collection of vehicles and then modifying them will keep you coming back even after you’ve mastered all the tracks. Gaming sessions can be as short as you want them to be making it a great game for efficient gaming sessions.
XCOM: Enemy Within (Mobile)
Link: Play Store Platform: iOS / Android Game Type: Turn Based Combat Format: Single / Online Multi Cost: ~$9.99 USD Avg Session Time: ~20 minutes to 1 hour
XCOM:EW is one of my favorite mobile games for a number of reasons: 1) It looks and plays great on a mobile device, 2) It does not require an active internet connection (airplane mode is fine), 3) XCOM is an excellent mix of strategy, RPG, and combat elements. I played XCOM:Enemy Unknown back when it released on PC and I am amazed by how well the mobile version stacks up against it. The developers have retained everything from the PC version and crammed it into the mobile version through some form of black magic. If you haven’t played a modern XCOM game yet, the premise is as follows: Manage a base, while upgrading soldiers, to fight on 3D isometric maps (with turn based combat). The game allows the player to save any point in time which makes it very compatible with a mobile lifestyle. If you want a high quality, portable, gaming experience, XCOM:EW is definitely worth your time.
Link: Origin Store Platform: PC (Origin) / Xbox One / PS4 Game Type: First Person Shooter Format: Single / Online Multi Cost: ~$39.99 USD / ~59.99 USD Avg Session Time: ~40 minutes to 3 hour
Battlefield 1 (BF1) is a departure from its modern cousin, Battlefield 4, and at the same time it’s very much the same. BF1 has taken the series back to World War I but the mechanics are very similar to Battlefield 4. If you are familiar with the modern Battlefield games, particularly Battlefield 3 & 4, then you probably have an idea of what to expect in BF1: massive 32v32 land battles fought with soldiers, tanks, vehicles, and airplanes. Battlefield maps are not the tiny killbox maps that plague that Call of Duty series. These are large land masses that require a literal army of players to conquer. There is a reason the series has coined the phrase “Battlefield Moments.” I’ve been in a trench fending off enemy soldiers when an enemy tank bears down on my squad. Shells are exploding all around us and the enemy closes. It looks like its over when suddenly the enemy tank explodes in a hellstorm of bombs dropped from our bomber. It’s absolutely insane at times.
If this sounds appealing to you, go check out BF1. If you are a fan of multiplayer first person shooters you will find hours of value here. The game has received some “streamlining” and is more accessible than the previous release, Battlefield 4. (Yes, the numbering system is confusing at best. Battlefield 1 was released after Battlefield 4.) Since BF1 has been out for some time they now offer a “complete” package for $59.99 that includes the premium pass and other add-ons.
That about wraps up this new addition to the Efficient Gaming List. If you have some suggestions or questions, please let us know in the comments or on Twitter. Game on!