Chewy Games

Based on K Thor Jensen‘s recommendation from the recent Insert Credit, figured it may be neat to have a forum to discuss and recommend games and media that one can enjoy in small bursts over a long period of time, something to"chew" on.

I’ve found RPG's like the Dragon Quest and Yakuza games lend themselves to being “chewed” given their density and can be played in shorter bursts.

What are some examples of chewy media that come to your mind? What makes a game "chewy"? Is there a better term for it?

[“Chewey Games”,“Chewy Games”]

I‘d like to keep gnawing on Yakuza 0 but this one cutscene in the mission in the chiropractor’s office keeps making the game crash and I can't get past it.

@“hammy”#p48082 for me tetris is a good example. a single game of marathon is just long enough without being too long. i have for long stretches played a single marathon session of tetris every day and nothing else.

and as a sufferer of chronic dry eyes, i can finish a game of marathon fast enough that my eyes are only smoking, but not on fire.

I've been playing Shining in the Darkness for the first time and I feel like this is a “chewy” game. You can kinda go into the labyrinth and grind some exp for 30 minutes and turn it off. Then on a day when you really have time you can make an effort to really dungeon crawl and accomplish something.

I find RPGs and the like rather the opposite! Almost entirely a me problem rather than a game problem however — I forget all context if I put down an rpg for any period of time. I forget everything other than the absolute main plot thread. This means I find it difficult to pick one up after having been away from it for a while.

Perhaps Forza Horizon 5 can be this game for me. Load it up, do some driving around for a little bit, put it down again for a while

ALEX JAFFE: Dirtbag hammy asks, What is the cud of video games?

CAPTAIN: Death Stranding. What you have there is a game that is very laid back, Alex—can I call you Mr. Jaffe?—and appropriate for chewing. I spent most of my hour-or-shorter play sessions building stuff to make my delivery routes more efficient, or doing sidequests, although "sidequest" makes the stuff I did sound too important. I got pretty good at deliveries, if I may toot my own horn. The game always shows you a timer of like 60 minutes to run your boxes from one place to another, but I never needed all those minutes. Most times I'd make the delivery way early.

FRANK CIFALDI, BRANDON SHEFFIELD, _in unison (astonished)_: **ONE DAY EARLY?!**

@“rejj”#p48125 I agree with Forza Horizon 5. It's very easy to hop in, click on some map icon and go do ten minutes of Car Stuff after work before you do the laundry.

I guess in general any big, open world, mission based game is kind of *designed* to be chewed on. Lots of RPGs and Car Games fit into this mold. In an adjacent direction any puzzle game with lots and lots and lots of puzzles in it a la Picross is also designed to be played in bites. I guess competitive, short match games are also designed in this way though with no actual end state. The only way to actually *play* a Dota / Fighting Game / etc for any period of time is over many, many discrete sessions.

Any game based around community content is probably the fourth pillar of this. Mario Maker is a constant stream of new stuff as a consequence of where those levels actually come from. That's all the comes to mind for games I would regularly chew.

@“pasquinelli”#461 Tetris definitely fits the bill.

@captain Absolutely agree with Death Stranding. Really hoping the Director's Cut stuff lands on other platforms besides PS5.

@"TheFragranceOfDarkCoffee"#p48159 +1 regarding car and puzzle games (so much time spent playing Lumines).
Rogue-like/lites may also fit into the bill, though perhaps not all equally. I chewed Hades extensively on a daily basis but dropped it upon hitting the final ending. I've never beat Spelunky, but have chewed on it quite a bit on and off over the years.

@"rejj"#455 That makes sense and I agree it varies person to person. Some RPG's have been better about providing summaries for main and sub plot points to mitigate that like DQXI and Judgement which helps.

@“rejj”#p48125 I typically agree with this, however I think Square & Nintendo stumbled into a solution for this with Bravely Default and Octopath Traveler being designed around chewy portable gaming. The games are structured around playing short bursts and short self-contained story episodes and putting the console into “sleep” mode to get the optimal experience. I think if you try to sit down with these in long play sessions over the course of a couple weeks, it comes across as slow, bloated, and have a weak story. But if you treat them like Animal Crossing, where you check in to explore, grind sidequests, craft weapons, give Elvis a new little hat, and then pick it up the next day - it is a great experience. The plot in these games isn't that significant to catch up on, and the “storybook” motif they go for is as much there for theming as it is for giving useful story recaps.

I like to go back to strategy games and city builders in between games, but sometimes those chewy games lose flavor (to extend the metaphor). It's sort of easier and more fun to just delete old Civ campaigns or Cities Skylines builds or Rimworld colonies and create a new game.

The one strategy game where I think it's more fun to _not_ start over from scratch are probably the _**Crusader Kings**_ games, since those games have new protagonists every couple hours anyway. I think if you like to role play the games and set goals that aren't just "min max everything", it can be a lot of fun to pick up in the middle of a game and take your realm in a new direction you weren't planning the last time you played. Even if you're doing well or poorly, there's so much room for growth or disaster at all times. Some games make you quit after a devastating defeat, but in CK2 and CK3 you can always settle for a dukedom under your conqueror and start a new assassination or revolution plot to take them down from the inside.

@“rejj”#p48125 I also have this problem, I hammered out DQXI to 100% completion in about three weeks. I didn‘t chew even a little bit, just gulped it straight down.

I wasn’t even all that keen on it honestly!

I mention Super Hexagon in almost every post I make but I am gonna do it again here. The game is extremely easy to play in short bursts (it only takes 60 seconds to "beat" a level, but the skill ceiling is very high). It's the only mobile game I have played for a meaningful length of time, for a couple years I played it on my phone at least a few times a week. Even now I bust it out from time to time, and I can still beat the hardest difficulty within a few minutes.

Puzzle games are an excellent point. I am perpetually chewing on a Picross!

I've been chewing on Picross 3d for like 3 monhts now!


@“Kez”#p48177 I mention Super Hexagon in almost every post

I chewed on that game for like 8 years but it no longer runs very well on my phone becaus the game hasn't been updated for a while now

In theory roguelites should be the perfect chewy genre because the fundamentals of a 1-2 hour run + permadeath should promote discrete and satisfying play sessions. But for me they‘re just too addicting and I can’t stop. One run before bed becomes one run + I‘ll just do the first floor of this new run then go to bed, but then I get a good run so decide to keep going and all of a sudden it’s 2 am. I think it has something to do with the loot box-esque RNG item discovery. Oh boy! What am I gonna get this time!! Recognizing this has kind of soured me on the genre a bit even as an objective dopamine measurement would identify it as my favorite genre

Tactics games might be the chewy genre for me. I enjoy them but not in a way that I can't put them down. Lengthy battles with correspondingly large rewards mean meaningful progress every session. JRPGs don't always provide that in my experience. Hate to spend my precious 1 hour gaming session on a side quest involving a clown......


@“tapevulture”#p48227 meaningful progress every session

If only you could have seen me waste an hour of my time last night setting up a beautiful defense against an enemy battalion in Fire Emblem 4, only to realize I left one guy with 3HP sitting defenseless on the open, cruel plain . . .

@“captain”#p48229 i'm right there with you baby. except i forgot to put Throw Item on my Geomancer in Final Fantasy Tactics

@“穴”#p48197 I loved very slowly chewing both picross 3D games!! These games are in no hurry.

Animal Crossing has been mentioned in passing in this here thread, but I'll tell you what: I think that game is about as chewy as they come, because there is no end goal. Or, alternative reading: you decide whether there is an end goal, and what that goal should be.

Personally, I recklessly abandon narrative-driven games all the time. I tell myself I'll return to them someday, but rarely do (and even more rarely see them through). But Animal Crossing is effortlessly resumeable. Sure you might have some weeds to pull and some roaches to step on, but that's not a lot of lost context to catch up on.

With regards to my island, Minty, I have fun thinking about the little farm I'm in the middle of starting, and the recipes I might be able to make as a result. I'm sort of toying with the idea of building an outdoor beer garden zone, but I know I'll have to dig up a bunch of flowers first.

But the digging up of the flowers is relaxing and engaging enough on its own. Sometimes, while I'm digging up flowers, my shovel will break, and then I'll have to go to the shop to buy a new one. On my way to the shop, a villager might rush up to teach me a new reaction. Then, something about that interaction will remind me to go visit an island for some resource I forgot I was planning to gather.

In Animal Crossing, the distractions are as much fun as the planned activities, and they're all low stakes and on no particular timeline.

That's chewy.

Also here is my alternative joke post about Disney Infinity being a chewy game “lol”

[upl-image-preview url=//]

@“穴”#p48197 chewed on this for years

lately I‘ve been chewing on dungeon encounters and it’s been scratching the itch to make minor incremental progress and make number go up