As we’ve just entered the holiday month, families all around the world are preparing for the special day later this month. With gifts to be had and food to be shared, it’s a time of joy and togetherness. As we’re making our way towards the day itself though, and you’ll be spending most of said day off of video games, you may want to spend some time with your online friends (or solo) prior to its arrival. With so many holiday events being imbued into various games though, it’s tough to choose which games you should play. No need to worry though, as I have you covered. Here are some of the best and most festive holiday-related video games you can play with your friends, family, or by yourself to end off the year!
Kicking off our list of holiday-related video games is a game that will arguably send more families and friend groups into swirling chaos than it will have you appreciating them (that’s the fun of it though, right?). In Overcooked 2, you and up to three other extremely skilled chefs will prepare various dishes for some hungry customers in a short window. With such little time and so many dishes to be made though, these kitchens become absolute chaos. While the enjoyment of friends and family alone is enough to belong on this list, Overcooked 2 has a set of levels entirely themed around the Christmas season. Oh, and a summer-related DLC for the few of you in the southern hemisphere.
It Takes Two
While I wouldn’t recommend this game for children due to a few traumatizing scenes and deeper themes, this title’s perfect for couples or friends wishing for a solid co-op adventure. It Takes Two sees a husband and wife contemplating divorce as their marriage has been less than functional. When their kid begins to believe she’s at fault though, her tears send their consciousness into dolls, and they’re forced to work together to free themselves from their wooden prisons. While that alone might seem less than ideal for Christmas time, the spirit of togetherness and the title’s major winter level earn it a spot as one of the better holiday-related video games you can play this Christmas season.
You may be noticing a bit of a strange theme with these being loosely related to the Christmas season, and with this latest entry, that isn’t going away any time soon. Fall Guys is a battle royale that circumvents the overbearing guns and fast gunplay of your standard fare. Instead, you’re one of a group of beans vying for a crown and the top spot in the world’s cutest battle royale. With the mix of silliness, potential teamwork, and a whole host of faithful winter-themed levels for you to take part in, Fall Guys can be a great family-friendly game to play before or after Christmas dinner, letting you all appreciate the hundred references and array of goofy costumes while falling down an ice slide. That, and the hot dog bean is the best costume. No, I won’t be taking counterarguments at this time.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons
Let’s take a quick detour into some more peaceful games, shall we? Animal Crossing: New Horizons likely doesn’t need an introduction for Switch fans, but it can be great for those who want a more casual, relaxed experience. That, and the inevitable Christmas event will transform your island into a winter wonderland. In Animal Crossing: New Horizons, you play as a small person designed by you while interacting with new villagers, building up your island, collecting new resources, and so much more! With so many adorable villagers (especially Tom Nook’s apprentices), you’re sure to appreciate how warm and colorful a game like this is. Just be careful, as a few hundred hours in this game will come a lot sooner than you might expect.
Super Mario Odyssey – Snow Kingdom
While with most games I’ve spoken on the games as a whole, Super Mario Odyssey is a bit too on the nose with holiday-related video games through its Snow Kingdom. Featuring a new outfit for Mario, theming him as a Santa Mario of sorts (Santa’s looking a lot more Italian than usual as of late), the platforming goes fully festive alongside Christmas-themed enemies. If you’ve wanted a reason to return to this critically acclaimed puzzle platformer, then the Snow Kingdom may be just the place for you. Who knows, maybe it’ll inspire a whole new replay and give you something to do during your time off.
Resident Evil Village
With these family-friendly entries out of the way, let’s throw some more mature games out for those who wish for something just a bit more in their age group. Resident Evil Village sees players step back into the shoes of Ethan Winters, who’s enjoying a nice family life with his wife Mia and daughter Rose. All things go awry though, as Ethan finds himself captured by Chris Redfield and his squad, who kill Mia and take Rose. Trapped in a dark village, he must use all his strength to take on werewolves, mutations, and the evil Mother Miranda. You may have already picked up on why I added this game, but in case you didn’t, the game’s winter setting makes it perfect for the holiday season. That, and who doesn’t love a little horror to contrast the increasingly festive world around them?
Finishing us off (in more ways than one, clearly) is Bayonetta 2, which has been considered a Christmas classic among fans. While I wouldn’t let children touch this game with a 10-foot pole, this can be great for adults who want a holiday-related video game that’s fast-paced, beautiful, and full of sexual innuendos straight from Bayonetta herself. Plus, with Bayonetta 3 currently set for release next year, what better way to get ready for its release than by playing or replaying its predecessor?
Now I want to hear from you. Which games are your go-to’s for the Christmas season? Anything from this list? Let me know in the comments below!