Whether in pursuit of mental freedom from the tedium of the day-to-day or simply to transport one’s mind to a place where immorality and wish fulfillment are implicit, video games and cannabis persist as a potent pair. Whether you’re looking for a multiplayer game to pair with your group cannabis sesh or you want to unwind with a single-player game while enjoying cannabis solo, here are some of my favorite video games to play while enjoying cannabis.
Multiplayer Video Games for Group Sessions
Super Mario Kart
The Super Nintendo is one of the best consoles ever made, which is why a couple of SNES mainstays have made the list. Super Mario Kart is a classic racing game with combat elements that suit players looking to cruise vibrantly-colored courses while launching projectiles at their foes. This game also has a versus arena mode where players or teams can go head to head and see who survives. Super Mario Kart invented the kart-racing genre and will always have a place in the canon of exceptional multiplayer racing games.
Super Smash Bros. (Wii U)
Super Smash Bros. is the completive fighting game. With a massive catalog of characters, move sets, and unique stages (modeled after settings throughout the Nintendo Universe), Smash offers virtually unlimited enjoyment thanks to its endless playability. This game creates more moments of laughter, rage, and passionate gameplay than nearly any other multiplayer game I’ve had the pleasure of enjoying amongst friends.
Rocket League is a game that combines kart-style driving with the structure of soccer. While the mechanics are simple, the technique required to guide a rocket-propelled vehicle into a massive ball and then into a goal is difficult to master. This unique twist on popular sport leads to moments of celebration and excitement while riding dirty in a tricked-out DeLorean.
Overwatch (Quick Play)
Overwatch by Blizzard Entertainment is a team-based first person shooter (FPS). This game is almost entirely multiplayer and challenges each team to work cooperatively to capture a point, control a point, or push through an objective. Blizzard has done an exceptional job at creating unique, well-balanced characters that play off each others’ strengths and weaknesses. This game also has a completive mode for players seeking to test their skills against the best of the best.
Single-Player Video Games for Solo Sessions
The Legend of Zelda, A Link to the Past
The Legend of Zelda, A Link to the Past is another Nintendo masterpiece. This game is a pitch-perfect action adventure that spans massive levels while still honoring the age-old “damsel in distress” trope, and the hero that must save her. A Link to the Past is artistically brilliant and masterfully designed, encouraging discovery and narrative progression seamlessly. Each area feels unique, and the weapons and tools you attain throughout your journey make you feel powerful and worthy of the title, “The Hero of Time.”
Few games have made me question the fabric of space and time like Bioshock Infinite. The third Bioshock installment led by Irrational Games is easily the most brilliant narrative-driven FPS I’ve had the pleasure of playing. With immaculate design and mechanics overlaid with a futuristic yet pastoral façade, this game redefines the limitations of gameplay storytelling while letting me shoot fireballs from my palm. Bioshock Infinite develops characters worth caring about and forces you to make symbolic choices that encourage the gamer to consider fate in a way that transcends the game itself.
Grand Theft Auto 5
GTA is a franchise that has been helping people blow off steam since the ’90s. Grand Theft Auto 5 elevates the open world model not only by portraying a true-to-life mashup of Los Angeles and San Diego, but also in its astoundingly diverse simulation capability. For example, if you want to go to the tennis court and play tennis, you can. If you want to invest in the stock market, you can. Skydiving, yes. Get your pilot’s license, yes. Own a recreational cannabis dispensary, yes. This game has a multifaceted story, brilliant voice acting, and an online mode that is just as massive and enjoyably messy as the single player campaign.
Journey is a beautiful indie offering from Thatgamecompany (or TGC for short). The story is subtle; it contains barely any dialogue at all, but even without guidance the player is drawn towards an impossibly bright pillar of light in the sky, and that’s enough to move the narrative forward. Every element of Journey is a thoughtful juxtaposition of colors or sounds that seem familiar while remaining otherworldly.
Limbo is a horror-survival puzzle platformer and so much more. With a dramatic Chiaroscuro art style that is as haunting as it is beautiful, Limbo follows the path of a young boy/entity trying to survive the rather murderous denizens of this high-contrast world. With challenging puzzles and one-of-a-kind set pieces, this indie game is an instant classic.