11 Joyous Gaming Experiences: A Video Game Bucket List

Shane Dayton
8 min readFeb 23, 2022

Look we all have a bucket list of things to do in life. Many of which are…unlikely. But I’m all about dreaming. So if we understand there are so many great experiences in life we want to have why isn’t there a video game bucket list of experiences you MUST have as a gamer?

Obviously we all have our favorite games, our favorite genres, the games that really gave us a fulfilled experience at the end of it.

One of the best parts about being a gamer who loves many different styles of gaming is the sheer number of different experiences and hidden treasures that I’m able to experience.

Here is a list of 11 very different gaming experiences that I believe every video game fan should experience — add it to that video game bucket list!

Dance with the Happy Slimes in Slime Rancher!

Dancing with smiling grinning pink slimes in slime rancher is just a joyous experience that makes any stressful day completely melt away. If you haven’t heard of Slime Rancher, this is a game you want to have a look at.

Those cute guys are only mildly happy slimes. You should see them during feeding time!

Slime Rancher has you on a planet with a vacuum gun that lets you corral and raise slimes on your ranch. They produce little gems known as plorts when you feed them and take care of them.

These happy little guys weave and bounce, smile and dance, and are adorable on a level that is frankly ridiculous.

There are many different slimes and when you feed them all and stand by the wall they break into big smiles and weave back and forth. I’ve spent minutes just laughing at the adorable graphics and letting the stress from real life fade away.

Wonderful game, and playing Slime Rancher is an experience that should be on the gaming bucket list.

BONUS — Getting “booped” on the nose by an ornery tabby slime. I didn’t know cats could become more cat-like but somehow the tabby slimes have done just that.

Cutting Grass in House Flipper

What is the best way to cut grass before flipping a house! A FLAME THROWER, of course! For anyone who has played House Flipper, this tool, generally the last one unlocked, brings immediate joy.

And a few accidents with setting fuel tanks on fire.

Burning the grass in House Flipper with a flame thrower is amazing. In a game that is simple, straight forward, and all about just fixing up houses and going through the motions of picking up trash and painting walls, you get a freaking flamethrower to take care of the weeds.

It’s pretty great.

Also beware of getting too close to the fuel containers when “trimming” the grass by the door. I have not only blown up the front door, but had the blast take out an interior door and the oven inside the house, as well.

Like I said, pretty great.

Pull the Perfect Frame in Among Us

Among Us is a game that may have seen its heyday during the pandemic, but it’s a fun and well-enough designed game that is great with a group of good friends, especially as you play together and get a history with one another.

You know what’s also great? Deciding it would be funny to frame a friend multiple times and managing to pull it off.

Pulling off the perfect frame job to get a crewmate voted out feels great, because it takes good timing, smart framing to avoid getting sus on yourself, and a little bit of luck.

But when you pull it off, it’s beautiful!

The confusion continues into space…

Turning on the Funny Walking Setting on West of Loathing

Honestly, nearly EVERYTHING about West of Loathing should be on this list. The amazing writing, hilarious stick figure graphics, great pontoon judgement from the narrator — everything about this game is just freaking brilliant

This is one of my favorite video games, and there’s a reason it makes every top RPG or crazy video game list on my video game blog that I can justify putting it on.

Don’t let the stick figure black and white aesthetic put you off — it’s amazing how many details and creative ways they create a world out of this truly minimalistic setup where an RPG takes place in an Old West full of demonically possessed cows, angry skeletons, weird ghosts, and a traveling circus that I definitely don’t trust!

This is a game with absolutely hilarious writing, a unique style many other games have tried (and failed) to emulate the charm of, and it holds up as an outstanding open world RPG.

If you go to the settings screen there is a “Crazy Walk Mode.” Turn it on and be endlessly entertained. Now go beat the game while somersaulting, crab walking, cartwheeling, moonwalking, or whatever else your character chooses to do at that time!

Survive the Wasteland in Fallout: New Vegas On Wild Wasteland Perk

Fallout: New Vegas is an amazing game and there are many who believe despite the rushed production and literally insane drama behind the scenes, that it’s the best Fallout game ever produced.

New Vegas created a vivid and strange world doing it’s thing in the post apocalyptic wastelands Fallout style. Among the many perks that your character can take is a HUGELY popular one among New Vegas fans called the Wild Wasteland Perk.

How does this perk help? It doesn’t!

But it makes the world crazy in unexpected ways including a mysterious line of red rubber balls appearing behind you (kick them and they scatter across the wasteland), coming out of a building to be attacked by a trio of 1950s housewife clones wielding rolling pins, or finding the skeleton of Indiana Jones in a refrigerator that didn’t keep the radiation out.

Don’t forget to take the suave gambling hat, and enjoy the added level of craziness that this perk adds to the game.

Build Your Super Farm in Stardew Valley

Look, there’s a reason Stardew Valley is the Titan of a video game that it is. Even before two gigantic content updates it was a truly incredible game that had sold millions upon millions of copies.

And taking in-game years to design the perfect farm has led to countless jaw-dropping designs that really spark up the imagination. There are an infinite number of ways to design a farm that looks and feels like something special starting from very humble roots, and you haven’t completed any video game bucket list until you’ve added your own!

Just one of literally tends of thousands of shared screenshots online of Stardew Valley farms, originally shared here.

Retro: Beat Final Fantasy 6…and Make Cid & Shadow Survive!

Look, this is an over 25, possibly 30 year old game at this point so if these are spoilers…I just can’t have too much sympathy.

Final Fantasy 6, released as 3 in North America, is one of (if not the) greatest RPG ever made. The satisfaction of beating this game is next level especially since it had a mechanic that was unthinkable to gamers back then.

You Lose.

This is like two games in one and in the first game, you actually lose to the bad guy Kefka. The world ends, and your group of survivors is scattered across the planet.

In a post apocalyptic world you need to pick up the pieces to finally beat the big baddie. This starts with a super emotional scene where Cid slowly dies while creating a boat to get your one returning character off an island.

At least that’s what many of us believed for years.

Turns out, lost in the pixelated SNES graphics, were that there were two types of fish and if you avoided giving Cid the “bad” ones, he survived to end game. Which told me one of the culturally traumatic moments of my childhood was a lie…and then made it worse because that meant despite all my young efforts not to kill him, I was Cid’s executioner.

So now that you know, go back and save the world (eventually) and make sure Cid is alive to see it!

Oh, and wait on the continent falling out of the sky until the last possible moment so you don’t leave the ninja to die. Cheeky game.

Solve the Mystery of the Obra Dinn

Unique graphics, strange mechanics, the designers of the cult classic “Papers, Please!” one-upped themselves when they created the game Return of the Obra Dinn.

This fascinating game takes the concept of being an 1800s insurance claim investigator, hands you a magic compass that shows flashes of the past, and sets you off on a level of craziness in trying to determine the fate of all the crewmates that creates a gaming experience totally unlike anything else I have ever played.

This is an incredible game and you feel the accomplishment of figuring out the clues to piece together the fate of each crew member on this ghost ship, and few game finishes have given me such an incredible feeling of accomplishment after completion.

Perfectly Complete Music Levels in Rayman Legends on Switch

Rayman Legends is a game that has flown under notice to even many avid gamers. This platformer for Switch delivers an incredibly fun experience, and the music levels involve game takes on classic rock songs where graphics and obstacles react to the beat of a song.

This leads to a fun, familiar, and yet unique experience that is just old school fun.

Reach 10 Wins with a Meme Team in Super Auto Pets

Super Auto Pets is a game that doesn’t need any introduction with most gamers at this point. This wildly popular game has caught fire for a reason and while it’s fun and challenging against good players, winning with a meme team is fun and hilarious.

And very challenging.

This is a worthy entry for any gaming bucket list, and when you pull it off whether it’s with a bee, a bus, an all fish/water animal team, or all birds, it’s just great.

No! I was soooooo close — and yes, there were three more straight losses after this one!

Defeat Dark Souls (Finally)

This is pretty self-explanatory at this point as everyone knows what Dark Souls is, the legendary difficulty of this game, and thus why it feels so freaking good when you finally beat it.

If you have beat this game, you KNOW you’ve earned it!

Bonus - Dark Humor Only: Conquer Kindergarten & Kindergarten 2!

If you don’t have a super dark sense of humor, go ahead and skip this one. For those of us who have more twisted senses of humor, these indie games were crazy, have super pixelated violence, and are next level insane even for those of us who really enjoy dark humor.

If you do enjoy dark humor, buy these two short games, enjoy them, and see if you can unlock the super secret “Metal” ending via Nugget. Enjoy!

--

--

Shane Dayton

Writer, gamer, passionate traveler, I'm at my happiest when I can spend my time where my interests meet. Hope you enjoy and thanks for reading!