Retro Gaming

Best Retro Games to Get Lost in During a Long Weekend

Explore epic worlds and timeless adventures with our top picks for retro games that are perfect for your next long weekend

Retro Alex

Long weekends offer a rare opportunity, like finding a hidden secret in a game, to dive deep into the pixelated adventures that defined generations. My gaming library grows faster than we can keep up, and the endless number of Steam sales and eShop sales make it even harder to whittle down our lists. A long weekend provides the perfect chance to reduce that ever-growing stack of must-play titles.

Imagine losing track of time as you explore enchanting worlds, battle epic foes in dark dungeons, and solve mind-bending puzzles. This article guides you through a handpicked selection of the best retro games to play over a long weekend. Each title promises a unique journey, ensuring that your days off are filled with excitement, challenge and nostalgia.

Let’s get started:

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (1991)

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (1991) offers an expansive world filled with mysteries and adventures. The game balances exploration with action, ensuring a constantly engaging experience. Its intricate world and compelling story make it an ideal pick for an immersive weekend escape. It’s also considered one of the greatest video games ever made.

Tetris (1984)

Tetris (1984) is simple in concept, deceptively challenging, and immensely satisfying. The game’s increasing speed demands quick thinking and sharp reflexes. It’s a perfect choice for those who enjoy a mental workout in their gaming sessions.

Street Fighter II (1991)

Street Fighter II (1991) revolutionized the fighting game genre. It offers plenty of characters, each with unique moves. The game is both accessible for beginners and deep enough for seasoned gamers. Its competitive nature makes it ideal for those seeking a thrilling challenge.

Final Fantasy VII (1997)

Final Fantasy VII (1997) is an epic journey through a richly detailed world. The strategic battle system keeps gameplay exciting. This game is perfect for players who enjoy diving deep into story-driven adventures.

Doom (1993)

Doom (1993) is a trailblazer in the first-person shooter genre. Its fast-paced action is exhilarating and adrenaline-pumping. The game’s groundbreaking 3D graphics and level design keep players on the edge of their seats. It’s an excellent choice for those who crave intense action.

Sonic the Hedgehog (1991)

Sonic the Hedgehog (1991) is renowned for its speed and vibrant visuals. Playing Sonic is like riding a roller coaster – thrilling and full of surprises. The game’s levels are diverse and challenging, offering a satisfying balance of speed and strategy. It’s a fantastic pick for a fun and fast-paced gaming weekend.

Castlevania: Symphony of the Night (1997)

Castlevania: Symphony of the Night (1997) is a masterpiece of the action-adventure genre. Its intricate castle is waiting to be explored. The game blends platforming with RPG elements, offering a rich and rewarding experience. It’s perfect for those who enjoy exploration and discovery in their games.

Chrono Trigger (1995)

Chrono Trigger (1995) is celebrated for its innovative gameplay and compelling narrative. The time-traveling adventure is a journey through different eras, each with its unique charm. The engaging story and character development make it a captivating choice for a long weekend.

Metal Gear Solid (1998)

Metal Gear Solid (1998) offers a unique blend of stealth and storytelling. Its gameplay requires strategy and patience. The cinematic narrative and well-developed characters add depth to the experience. This game is ideal for those who appreciate a blend of action and story.

Pac-Man (1980)

Pac-Man (1980) is an arcade classic that remains as enjoyable today as it was decades ago. The simple objective, to avoid ghosts and eat pellets, is easy to understand but challenging to master. It’s a great pick for casual yet engaging gaming.

Mega Man X (1993)

Mega Man X (1993) is a thrilling action-platformer. Its level design and boss battles are like intricate puzzles that require skill and strategy to overcome. The game’s challenging gameplay and rewarding progression system make it an excellent choice for gamers who enjoy a good challenge.

Super Metroid (1994)

Super Metroid (1994) is known for its atmospheric exploration and innovative design. The game’s blend of exploration, puzzle-solving, and action provides a deeply satisfying experience, perfect for a weekend dive.

Half-Life (1998)

Half-Life (1998) redefined the first-person shooter genre with its engaging story and innovative gameplay. Its immersive narrative is like being the protagonist in a sci-fi thriller. The combination of action, puzzle-solving, and story creates a compelling experience, ideal for gamers seeking depth and excitement. Half-Life is one of the best games ever made. If you haven’t had a chance to experience it for yourself, use a long weekend to get lost in it.

Resident Evil 2 (1998)

Resident Evil 2 (1998) offers a gripping survival horror experience. Its tense atmosphere is like walking through a haunted house, filled with suspense and surprises. The game’s blend of horror, puzzle-solving, and action makes it a perfect pick for those who enjoy a thrilling and immersive experience.

Baldur’s Gate II: Shadows of Amn (2000)

Baldur’s Gate II: Shadows of Amn (2000) is a deep role-playing game set in a rich fantasy world. The game’s strategic gameplay and extensive world offer a weekend’s worth of engaging and thoughtful play. It’s also one our top picks for the 100 best classic Windows games.

StarCraft (1998)

StarCraft (1998) is a pinnacle of real-time strategy games. Managing resources and commanding armies in this game is like playing chess on a grand scale. Its balanced gameplay and competitive nature make it a great choice for strategy enthusiasts.

The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind (2002)

The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind (2002) invites players into a vast open world full of possibilities. Exploring its landscapes and cities is like being a wanderer in an ancient, mystical land. The game’s freedom and depth make it ideal for those who enjoy creating their own adventures.

Diablo II (2000)

Diablo II (2000) is known for its addictive loot-driven gameplay. Battling through its dungeons comes with the promise of better gear with every enemy defeated. The game’s satisfying progression and replayability make it a great choice for a rewarding and engaging weekend.

Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (2003)

Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (2003) is a blend of action, adventure, and puzzle-solving. The game’s engaging story and innovative design make it an excellent choice for those looking for something different.