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The best cozy games

Stardew Valley player walking through town.
ConcernedApe

In a world where so many games send you on missions with tense action and high stakes, sometimes it’s nice to just sit back and relax a bit. That’s where the cozy genre comes in with calming exploration, crafting, and decorating that give you a sense of purpose without all of the stress that comes from more action-oriented games. If that’s what you’re after, look no further, as we’ve compiled a list of what we consider to be the best cozy games you can play right now.

Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Animal Crossing: New Horizons
83%
E
Platforms
Nintendo Switch
Genre
Simulator
Developer
Nintendo EPD, Nintendo
Publisher
Nintendo
Release
March 19, 2020
Animal Crossing has long been known as the quintessential franchise within the cozy gaming genre, and Animal Crossing: New Horizons has only further sealed it’s status as such. With its diverse cast of characters, near-endless amount of customizability, and a bustling community of die-hard fans eager to help each other and work together, this entry in the beloved series showcases the very best of what a cozy game can and should be. There’s really just nothing else that compares.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons - Nintendo Switch Trailer - Nintendo E3 2019

Disney Dreamlight Valley

Disney Dreamlight Valley
80%
E
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), Mac, iOS, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Role-playing (RPG), Simulator, Adventure
Developer
Gameloft
Publisher
Gameloft
Release
September 06, 2022
Disney Dreamlight Valley asks, “What if Animal Crossing was a Disney game?” and manages to pull it off shockingly well. This cute and vibrant social sim sets you off on an adventure filled with beloved Disney characters and plenty of ways to customize your valley. However, it also stands out with its quest-based structure and various unique gameplay mechanics that ensure that there’s always something new to be doing in Dreamlight Valley.
Disney Dreamlight Valley - Announcement Trailer

Spiritfarer

Spiritfarer
86%
T
Platforms
Linux, PC (Microsoft Windows), Mac, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Google Stadia
Genre
Platform, Simulator, Adventure, Indie
Developer
Thunder Lotus Games
Publisher
Thunder Lotus Games
Release
August 18, 2020
Do you want to relax, but also potentially cry? Spiritfarer might be for you. This charming game is as heartwarming as it is heartbreaking. It casts you as a ferry master who must accommodate the deceased for their final journey to the afterlife. It’s wonderfully laid-back game that sees you fishing, cooking, and exploring a gorgeous world — but it may also tug at your heartstrings in ways you aren’t expecting, so keep a tissue nearby.
Spiritfarer - Gwen Trailer [PEGI 3 - Provisional]

Toem

Toem
84%
E
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), Mac, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Puzzle, Adventure, Indie
Developer
Something We Made
Publisher
Something We Made
Release
September 17, 2021
If you’re into photography, TOEM might be right up your alley. This calming little title sends you on a journey taking specific photos and checking off lists as you visit various unique locations drenched in a compelling black-and-white aesthetic. TOEM‘s humorous vibe is sure to keep a smile on your face, and the folks you meet along the way will stick in your mind for weeks afterward.
TOEM - European Game Showcase Trailer

Unpacking

Unpacking
73%
E
Platforms
Linux, PC (Microsoft Windows), Mac, Android, iOS, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Point-and-click, Puzzle, Simulator, Indie, Arcade
Developer
Witch Beam
Publisher
Humble Games
Release
November 02, 2021
One of the more unusual games in the cozy genre, Unpacking is an interesting game that sees you doing exactly what the title suggests: unpacking things. As you move through various homes throughout the game, you’ll unpack belongings and get a glimpse into the different stages of a woman’s life. It’s at once incredibly relaxing and thought-provoking. Iit can be completed in just a few short hours, and it’s well worth seeing through to the end.
Unpacking Early Gameplay Footage

Tchia

Tchia
69%
T
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5
Genre
Adventure, Indie
Developer
Awaceb
Publisher
Kepler Interactive, Awaceb
Release
March 21, 2023
Tchia is the ideal game for anyone who loves to explore and find creative ways to complete objectives. This coastal sandbox game takes place on an archipelago inspired by New Caledonia and allows you to take control of the animals that inhabit the area to jump, glide, climb, and run throughout its beautiful jungles and beaches. You’ll even take control of a raft to sail to new islands and see what fresh adventures await there. Tchia is a truly special experience that shouldn’t be missed.
Projet Caillou - work in progress compilation - (c) Awaceb

Stardew Valley

Stardew Valley
87%
E10
Platforms
Linux, PC (Microsoft Windows), Mac, Android, iOS, Wii U, PlayStation Vita, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch
Genre
Role-playing (RPG), Simulator, Strategy, Indie
Developer
ConcernedApe
Publisher
ConcernedApe, Chucklefish Games
Release
February 26, 2016
Stardew Valley is one of the cozy genre’s most popular entries, boasting an old-school 16-bit aesthetic and no shortage of things to do. After inheriting your grandfather’s farm with limited money at your disposal, you’ll spend your time tending crops, wooing dates, and trying to make a life for yourself in a lovely little town. With so much content available, this one can easily provide you with months and months of chill fun.
Stardew Valley Trailer

PowerWash Simulator

PowerWash Simulator
75%
E
Platforms
PC (Microsoft Windows), PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Simulator, Indie
Developer
FuturLab
Publisher
Square Enix
Release
May 19, 2021
There’s no more satisfying game on this list than Powerwash Simulator. Taking a powerwasher to a wide variety of locations to clean every little spot is one of the most fulfilling experiences you can have in the cozy genre. There’s no time limit and nothing to worry about — it’s just you and some power washer attachments as you spray away at the grime. It’s easy to lose hours in this game as you constantly say, “OK, just one more area, and then I’ll take a break.”.
PowerWash Simulator Early Access Launch Trailer

Coral Island

Coral Island
70%
E10
Platforms
Linux, PC (Microsoft Windows), Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S
Genre
Role-playing (RPG), Simulator, Strategy, Adventure, Indie
Developer
Stairway Games
Publisher
Humble Games
Release
October 11, 2022
Coral Island is a fairly standard cozy game from a gameplay perspective, as it sets you loose in a new town to create a life for yourself. But it gets a lot of the fundamentals so right that it’s hard not to recommend it to fans of similar games like Animal Crossing: New Horizons, or Stardew Valley. Whether you’re nurturing bonds with its other villagers, planting and harvesting crops, or adopting a new pet to love, Coral Island is a coastal wonderland worth exploring.
Coral Island — Official Announcement Trailer | 4k

New Pokémon Snap

New Pokémon Snap
74%
E
Platforms
Nintendo Switch
Genre
Simulator, Adventure
Developer
Bandai Namco Studios
Publisher
Nintendo
Release
April 29, 2021
New Pokémon Snap revisits a simple but brilliant idea that was first introduced on the Nintendo 64 so long ago: just take pictures of Pokémon. This casual Pokémon experience offers you an opportunity to travel across jungles, beaches, deserts, and beyond as you coax out some of the pocket monsters you’ve grown to love over the years so that you can snap their pictures for research. It’s a pleasant little on-rails adventure that is sure to please most fans of Nintendo’s long-running franchise who are looking for a serene time.
New Pokemon Snap - Official Switch Trailer

Editors' Recommendations

Billy Givens
Billy Givens is a freelance writer with over a decade of experience writing gaming, film, and tech content. His work can be…
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