Nowadays, video games are defined by their long lifespan and impressive content that spans at least 60 hours. These AAA titles have incredible storylines and cutting-edge game mechanics to delight and excite fans. The biggest names in gaming today take great pride in keeping gamers glued to their seats for hours on end.
However, a long playtime does not prove that the games are fun. Most long-running titles are doomed as video games slowly come to a halt and the end is nowhere in sight.
It takes a while to play through the story, or for finalists it takes a bit longer to do everything the game has to offer. But there are games that balance that well and a good story.
Five enjoyable open-world video games that take the longest to beat
1) Death Stranding (113 hours)
This list features games with long playtimes and amazing stories. This entry is one of the most technically advanced games Hideo Kojima has made.
Death Stranding is the first strand-like video game that emphasizes on telling a great story and fantastic gameplay that makes players feel like they are in the post-apocalyptic world.
The fantasy elements of this game are increased to eleven and the characters look realistic. Hideo Kojima has made his characters and the cutscenes they star in much more authentic with an all-star cast.
Death Stranding’s gameplay loop is simple but weirdly complicated. Stealth and traversal are the main aspects of the game, as direct engagement is discouraged. Weather is also tied to how gameplay works, as rain is a big factor in slowing down progress.
Building bridges and making areas previously impossible to cross is just one of the things that makes Death Stranding special. When online mode is enabled, players can see structures built by others and use them to travel the world. This type of gameplay creates a sense of community and makes playing the title for long hours more fun.
The game offers a long playtime, but every minute is enjoyable. Death Stranding is a beautifully crafted open-world title that has exceeded all expectations, and fans can’t wait to see what Hideo Kojima has to offer next.
2) Elden Ring (127 hours)
FromSoftware has always been known for its iconic Souls video games, but this is arguably its biggest release ever. Elden Ring is masterfully crafted and incredibly well thought out.
Players have beaten this game in record time, but the real beauty of Elden Ring is its huge open world littered with things to explore and enemies to fight.
FromSoft has always been one step ahead of everyone else when designing enemies and bosses, but Elden Ring takes the cake. Players will get lost in the Lands Between, encountering every FromSoft trope out there.
The World of Hidetaka Miyazaki takes an impressive 127 hours to complete in its entirety. However, this does not include the deaths and walls that players run into while trying to beat bosses.
With expertly designed dungeons that themselves feel like a Dark Souls mini-game, users will spend hours trying out different playstyles and ways to approach a difficult situation.
It might not be the longest video game on this list, but it’s one that offers never-before-seen replayability and freedom. Elden Ring has steeped itself in history and fans will expect DLC.
3) The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt (172 hours)
CD Projekt Red’s most successful title and series to date, The Witcher redefined the ARPG genre with iconic characters and a narrative plot that draws players in. When you play any Witcher game, fans are automatically drawn to the protagonist, Geralt of Rivia.
The series has become a pop culture icon, spawning a television show and other pieces of fan fiction.
Witcher 3 starts off quite slowly, but players mostly enjoy this pace because the laid-back approach to exploration works well with the game. The combat is challenging and they must use all the tools and skills at their disposal to take down enemies.
The title’s main story only takes around 50-60 hours to complete, but it’s best enjoyed for long periods of time.
With Witcher, there’s always an air of mystery, and the iconic story of the Wild Hunt brings all the creatures of Polish folklore to life. The Witcher 3 has a long playtime, but users will enjoy every second of it.
4) Red Dead Redemption 2 (172 hours)
This list would be incomplete without a Rockstar Games video game. RDR2 is one of the greatest open-world experiences to date. The game is as long as it is beautiful to get lost in it.
Red Dead Redemption 2 follows the classic Rockstar formula by bringing the expansive Western story to life. The characters are incredibly well done and follow human stories that have a profound impact on players.
Video games like RDR2 arrive from time to time, especially for Rockstar, which takes time with its releases. This game is still remarkable and can be played in 2022.
The story follows the protagonist Arthur Morgan, who has before him an epic and violent adventure, including tragedy, betrayal and hope. These are just a few RDR2 themes, and the change to tell these amazing stories against the backdrop of the old west setting is a treat to enjoy.
Red Dead Redemption 2 boasts an incredibly long lifespan, but it’s enjoyable from start to finish.
5) The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim (212 hours)
As far as long-running RPGs go, Skyrim is still a vast and wonderful video game to step into in 2022. With countless remasters releasing, Bethesda aims to keep players in their massively fleshed-out world until the next Elder Scrolls. comes along.
Skyrim is set in the titular lands and follows the story of the player-character, called the Dovahkiin. Skyrim’s story is expansive and takes a ton of routes.
Users have access to many playstyles and quests. With NPCs and things to do scattered across the entire map, the world of Skyrim never really seems to end.
RPG mechanics allow players to tell their own stories at their own pace. If players want a more linear experience, Skyrim offers that as well. The main quests can be completed in 25 hours, but the authentic Skyrim experience is all about exploring everything the video game has to offer.
Note: This article reflects the views of the author.