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Comfort Food Games for Christmas

On 11/28/2020 at 12:51 PM by The Last Ninja

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You know what comfort food is, right? It's something that you love to eat that puts you in that perfect mood where "life is wonderful" in that moment. It could be ice cream, or pizza, or something that your mom makes that is your absolute favorite. Well, comfort food could describe other things too, like games. A comfort food game could be one that you are super nostalgic about, or simply that has all the right ingredients that makes you feel like you're playing something very familiar and fun. It's that new game that you took a chance on and said, "This game is perfect, I love this game!" Of course, comfort food games can be different for everyone, but here are some that I think make great comfort food games for many gamers right now. All of these games are available on current consoles. Christmastime is probably the BEST time to enjoy those comfort food games. (Quick note, I haven't actually played all of these games) PLEASE feel free to share what your comfort food game would be right now down in the comments! 

Super Mario Galaxy--Super Mario 3D All-Stars (Switch) 

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Galaxy is my favorite 3D Mario game. When it first came out in 2007, I bought it and loved every second of it! Because of its innovative platforming, fantastic worlds, fun yet familiar mechanics, awesome boss fights, charming story, and incredible music, it's just an all-around perfect game to pick up and play at any time. And you can play it again right now thanks to Super Mario 3D All-Stars on Switch. It is arguably the best 3D Mario game, and tons of fans are still hoping for a Super Mario Galaxy 3. 

Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair (PS4/Xbone/Switch/Win) 

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This game is instant comfort food. It's basically the spiritual successor to the original Donkey Kong Country games (made by many of the original Rare team members) as it plays and feels just like those games! The level design is outstanding and feels just right. The game rewards exploration with tons of things to find and collect. The overworld between levels also has quite a bit of exploration. And if that's not enough, the game is oozing with charm and colorful characters. What's really cool is that you can play the last level (the impossible lair) at any time, but it's super hard, so you will probably want to make sure you're prepared. 

Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time (PS4/Xbone) 

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Developer Toys for Bob did a great job making not just a good CB game, but also a good CB sequel. CB4 picks up right where CB3 left off. The game instantly feels like a Crash game, but it's not all nostalgia. There are plenty of new additions and tweaks. CB4 has two types of side levels: flashback levels and alternate timeline levels. The alternate timeline levels have you playing as three other playable characters, each with their own moveset. This gives the game some great variety. On top of this, there are tons of things to collect (if that's your thing). You can also switch between Retro Mode (no checkpoints) and Modern Mode (checkpoints). Any CB fan will have a blast with this excellent platformer. 

Animal Crossing: New Horizons (Switch) 

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Nominated for Game of the Year, AC came out at just the right time. It sold like crazy because people have been cooped up in their homes. It offers all the familiar trappings of AC but with a new twist: you start from scratch on an island and you have to build your town. It's really great to see things grow and change. New additions include Nook Miles, a DIY crafting system (a very simple one), and simultaneous multiplayer. Since the launch of the game, the development has added new features like swimming and visiting other players' dreams (trippy). This is perhaps the most relaxing game of the year. 

Dragon Quest XI (PS4/Xbone/Win) and Dragon Quest XI S: Definitive Edition (Switch) 

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I recently beat this game on the Switch and was blown away. It's regarded by fans as the best game in the DQ series. First of all, the story and characters are fantastic. The story is a bit typical, but throws in some twists along the way. The little stories of different towns and their problems is perhaps my favorite part. The main characters are really charming, endearing, and often very funny. The battle system is simple with just enough new things to make it interesting. The game is challenging, but never too difficult. It's also a beautiful game, and the Switch version has fully orchestrated music that sucks you into the world. There are also a ton of sidequests if you don't want the game to end or if you want to get extra costumes for the characters. 

Octopath Traveler (Switch/Win/Stadia) 

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The opposite side of DQ XI, Octopath Traveler is a brutally difficult JRPG. But don't get me wrong, it's an incredible game! The eight main characters each have excellent stories and personal journeys that they must travel. The art style is really gorgeous to look at. The battle system is different: you have to find out what each enemy is weak against (swords, spears, knives, or fire, ice, etc.) in order to do the maximum damage. This system is used to great effect, especially for boss fights, which can be brutally difficult and go on for an hour or more! Topping it off is an amazing soundtrack. The town themes are beautiful while the battle themes are rocking and epic.

Spider-Man: Miles Morales (PS4/PS5) 

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Insomniac has done it again. In this game, you play as Miles, who is being mentored by Peter Parker. The game focuses on Harlem during Christmastime, and your interactions with regular people doing everyday things is such a delight. The story is about growing into and becoming a hero, and despite some typical plot stuff, it's a powerful story. The combat is great here, but they added Miles' electric powers, which you can enhance with power-ups and new moves. There's plenty to do here. I think everyone is very excited to see where Insomniac goes next with this series, and really, the sky is the limit. 

Streets of Rage 4 (PS4/Xbone/Switch/Win/Linux/macOS) 

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I'm a huge fan of beat 'em ups, so I was very excited when I heard that SoR4 was not just a simple cash-grab. Lizardcube really put their heart and soul into this game, and it shows. Every playable character is excellent, with their own moveset and abilities. The actual fighting feels very good and satisfying. You'll see tons of familiar faces as you fight your way to the Y Twins (Mr. X's kids). I love that the game is 4 player! Also, there's a bunch of stuff to unlock, including more playable characters. Yuzo Koshiro also did some of the music, which is also superb. 

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (Switch) 

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Who doesn't like Smash Bros? The series now represents the entire gaming spectrum (although we're still waiting for Master Chief). The amount of characters and content in Ultimate is staggering. Some will say that there are too many characters, but I think in this case, the more the merrier. Due to the huge cast, any player will be able to find a character that they are comfortable using. World of Light is a fantastic one player mode, and the new modes are all welcome additions. Playing online is a blast, you can always find someone that will compete on your skill level. The game is accessible to new players while also catering to hardcore fans that still like Melee a little bit more. It's the perfect pick up and play game, which is why I think Ultimate is the perfect comfort food game. 




11/28/2020 at 09:19 PM

Toys for Bob did CB4? I'm going to have to check that one out. Also, Spider-Man Miles Morales sounds interesting. 

My comfort food game right now is Farm Together, the closest thing to Animal Crossing on Xbox. In the past it's been games like Earth Defense Force and Defense Grid 2. 

The Last Ninja

11/29/2020 at 12:26 AM

I think life sims can easily become comfort food games because they're so relaxing and you wish real life was as good as it was in that particular game. We can dream lol 

Matt Snee Staff Writer

11/29/2020 at 03:07 AM

I have multiple comfort games, but I think my biggest comfort game would have to be Final Fantasy IX. That game just give me so much endless pleasure in being so good, but also in reminding me of happy times. I've played it a lot, and it never gets old. 

The Last Ninja

11/30/2020 at 01:33 AM

Now that I think about it, I think I feel the same way about FF VI for SNES. 

Cary Woodham

11/29/2020 at 08:19 AM

I just wrote a blog about Super Mario 3-D All-Stars, and how good Super Mario Galaxy is, so I recommend you please go read that while it's fresh!

I got Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair last Christmas.  It's a lot better than what I thought it would be, but it got to the point where collecting enough coins to unlock new levels got too hard.

Never been a big fan of Crash.  Only game I like from him is Crash Team Racing.

Definitely Animal Crossing.  New Horizons is going to be my GOTY, no surprise there.

I wish I had time to play more RPGs like the new Dragon Quest.  Classic RPGs like FF6 are definitely comfort food for me, though.  Octopath Traveler was good, but got too grindy after you found all the characters.

Streets of Rage 4 is great.  It'll win a big award when I do my GOTY blog.  Smash games are great, too, but I'm not very good at them.

Other games I consider comfort food include Kirby and classic arcade titles.

The Last Ninja

11/30/2020 at 01:37 AM

Great to hear that some of these will make your GOTY list. A lot of it is subjective, of course. I also have a soft spot for Kirby games. 

Super Step Contributing Writer

11/30/2020 at 03:09 PM

I'm really looking forward to playing CB4. 

I thought SoR 4 was just ok. It just couldn't live up to the magic of SoR 2 for me, and I'm saying that as someone who never played on Genesis until I bought my mini console, so it's not nostalgia speaking. 

I played a demo of the 2D Yooka Laylee game and had fun with it. 

I've never played a DQ game, but apparently the Yakuza 7 (Like a Dragon) game I'm playing is really similar. 

Miles Morales is definitely a purchase with my PS5 when I get one. It could be a while though. 

The Last Ninja

12/01/2020 at 09:50 AM

Miles Morales is also out on PS4. 

Honestly, DQ XI is a great game to jump into the series with because it's very simple to understand and just all around really great. You should check it out. 

Super Step Contributing Writer

12/01/2020 at 10:28 PM

Yeah, I know, and that might be the route I go but ... I kinda think I want to play it on PS5. lol I'm greedy that way. Too bad I'll also need to buy a 4KTV to fully enjoy it ... 


12/01/2020 at 06:32 PM

Mine are Terraria, Metal Slug X and 3, Doom 64, Shadowgate (NES), Fallout: New Vegas, X-Com: UFO Defense, Deus Ex, Dwarf Fortress, the MetroidVanias. Games I can instantly jump into and "feel at home."

The Last Ninja

12/05/2020 at 12:07 PM

Those are some great games! There are so many great metroidvanias out there. 


12/06/2020 at 12:53 PM

I'm meaning specificially the Castlevanias on GBA and DS. Guess I should have just wrote that lol


12/02/2020 at 04:07 PM

Animal Crossing has definitely been my comfort food game of the year. It was the game that finally made me decide to get a Switch (I spent three and a half months trying to find one before I got lucky). A few of my friends and I have been having meet ups on each other's islands, whch has been fun. Too bad there isn't voice chat (well, I guess there is, if you use the smartphone app, but I don't have a smartphone). Other games that have been my comfort games are the Ratchet & Clank franchise and Sleeping Dogs. And although I played DQ XI on my PS4, I really want the Switch version, because I missed the orchestral soundtrack from DQ VIII. 

The Last Ninja

12/05/2020 at 12:08 PM

AC is fantastic, tons of people bought a Switch just for that game. 

Definitely get the Switch version of DQ XI, it's so good. The music alone is comfort foood. 

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