Some mini games are so much fun – and so addictive! – that they could almost be their own game. From the total Zen of fishing in World of Warcraft to the excitement of the casino games in Grand Theft Auto, mini games add an extra dimension to our favorite games. Below is a list of some of the best ones.
World of Warcraft – fishing
With the release of Classic, many people play WoW to complete quests and wander through its detailed, beautiful landscapes. Others play for the high intensity raids, spending their time dungeon crawling and hunting the big bosses. But there are some people who are just in it for the fishing. Technically a secondary profession that can be practiced in most bodies of water (and lava!), fishing is a chill way to gain items and pass the time while waiting for another raid or respawn.
If you’re not a MMORPG fan, many of the games in the Legend of Zelda franchise have a great fishing mini game. The one in Ocarina of Time is particularly good – it even includes the option to cause some trouble by throwing the pond owner’s hat into the pond!
Red Dead Redemption – poker
Red Dead Redemption and its sequel have been at the top of gaming lists for years because of their impressive graphics and sprawling open worlds to explore. It would be impossible to have a game set in the Wild West without including poker in some way. Poker can be played in a variety of locations, including saloons, hotels and ranches, in both games. The game employs Texas Hold ’em rules and is just as engaging as any online casino poker game. Playing the poker mini games also increases certain skills and ammunition capacity, so even if you’re not a natural card shark there are good reasons to play.
Witcher 3 – Gwent
Gwent might be the only game that has jumped from the virtual world to the real one! With the ever-expanding popularity of the Witcher franchise, it’s no surprise that this mini game became popular enough to warrant its own spin-off, but it was a cool innovation to see limited edition physical card decks released with certain versions of the game.
Gwent is a card game that exists in the lore of the Witcher series, appearing throughout the books. Gwent is a turn-based card game where each player controls a different faction. The game is a war between the factions, with each round consisting of multiple duels. If you’re just starting out, this mini game can be played with just a basic understanding of the rules but as you become more familiar with it, you can incorporate bluffing and strategic deck construction. On top of that, the art of the cards is beautiful and makes the world of the Witcher come to life even more.
Skyrim – lockpicking
Unlike other mini games that are just for fun and can be skipped over without having an effect on gameplay, the lockpicking in Skyrim is critical to progressing in certain quests. It can be frustrating at the lower skill levels where picks break easily (stock up on lockpicks to avoid getting trapped in jail!) but the practice and dexterity that the lockpicking mechanic requires make it an enjoyable challenge. There is something particularly satisfying about a mini game that feels like the real thing.
Grand Theft Auto Online – Diamond Casino
With the Grand Theft Auto Online: The Diamond Casino & Resort update, GTA introduced not only a casino heist storyline but a bunch of classic casino mini games as well. Along with roulette and slot machines, the mini games also include some card games. The Three Card Poker and blackjack mini games are seriously addictive and a great way to spend some of the GTA cash burning a hole in your pocket. Well designed and engaging, the Diamond Casino & Resort feels like a new online casino which SuperLenny has made an extensive article about.
If you’re looking for something a little less intense or just want to spend a bit of time outdoors, Grand Theft Auto V also has a great golf mini game. The improved mechanics includes a full set of clubs to choose from and allows the player to adjust their stroke type and power.
A well-designed and fun to play mini game adds the extra element to a video game that takes it from a good game to a great one. From games of skill to games of chance or games of pure relaxation, there’s a mini game for everyone.