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12 shortest open world games to play in 2023

It’s a great feeling when you are completely immersed in an open world game. Whether it’s the vast wild west or the sprawling magical world, there’s so much to take in, explore, and interact with. This year will see the arrival of new ones that are even more fun to play, from The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom to Starfield. But jumping into a new open world game often requires you to spend a lot of time getting through it, and if you don’t have 50 hours to devote to a new game, you should know about shorter open world games. to play that won’t take up too much of your time.

In this list, we have collected the top 12 shortest open world games, according to How long to beat, to help you quickly find something to pass on. To complete their main story, these games last from over an hour to about seven hours. They also offer a wide variety of experiences, from short and sweet indie games to stellar action-packed expansions to the games you already know and love. Starting from the shortest open-world game on How Long to Beat’s website, here’s our list of the 12 shortest open-world games to play in 2023.

  • Time to win: Average 1h 20p for Main Story
  • Communication: Available on computerPlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita (Note: unfortunately not available on PS Store)

If you have an hour to kill and are looking for something simple to pass the time, look no further than Proteus. This game just asks you to wander, listen to the sounds of the world around you, and observe the changing seasons. Ours review calls it “an exciting experiment in discovery from start to finish – even if it is very, very short-lived.” They also explain that there is “beauty in Proteus’ unmatched simplicity,” making it well-suited for those who just want to sit back, relax, and take in its pixelated scenery. It will also take you just over an hour to complete.

  • Time to win: Average 1h 29p for Main Story
  • Communication: Available on computer

Similar to the simple (and very, very short) open world games, Copoka is a small indie game that takes you on a journey where you play as a bird flying around the city. You can also listen to conversations going on in the city below, but mostly for flying around and exploring. Its main story only takes about an hour and a half to complete, or two hours if you want to finish the whole thing, so you can easily cross it off your list in an evening.

From playing a bird to playing a lynx, Shelter 2 puts you in the role of a mother lynx trying to protect her babies in the snowy wilderness. It boasts a lovely art style and a huge open world to explore around, with a main story that will take you around two hours to complete. However, if you want to be a complete person with it, it takes (on average) up to 13 hours to finish everything in it.

  • Time to win: Average 2h 14p for Main Story
  • Communication: Available on Mac, computer, Xbox one

Have you ever wanted to be a dog photographer? I mean, who wouldn’t want to be? And luckily, Pupperazzi gives you the opportunity to do just that. Roam around its open world and snap photos of all the sweet pups you come across while building your career along the way. It’s also a quick game, taking a little over two hours on average to complete the main story, so you could easily spend an entire evening perfecting your photography skills while petting the animals. cute dog. Perfect, right?

And, if you want to leave the world of dog photography behind, you’ll probably be interested in a game like Mud Life, in which you play a tagger named Ghost. In this game, your open world playground is a polluted island that you have to explore and make a name for yourself. The main story will only take about two and a half hours to complete, but if you want to finish all that Mud Life has to offer, it will take you almost five hours.

Because when you’re tired of Sludge Life’s pollution, you can find fresher air in Grow Home. This is a sweet and short little game in which you play as a robot named BUD (short for Botanical Utility Droid) who is on a mission to save his home planet. After release, our review says it’s “not particularly long, special, or even deep,” but that it’s “absolutely comfortable in its own skin and that makes it fun to play.” It won’t take too long to complete, as the main story takes a little over two and a half hours, while it will take you around 8 hours to get to 100%.

  • Time to win: Average 3h 12p for Main Story
  • Communication: Available on computer

If you’re looking to explore more planets, Lost Nova follows a young explorer named Mia who lands on an alien planet and finds her ship in need of repair. Throughout the game, you’ll explore the planet, make new friends, and collect materials, crafts, and trades to repair your ship. To complete the main story, you need just over three hours, and if you want to see all that Lost Nova has to offer, it will take you around seven hours.

If the lovable characters easily conquer you, then you will definitely love the famous Lil Gator from Lil Gator Games. This ridiculously cute adventure game has you roaming around and exploring a small island where you can make new friends and defeat the cardboard bad guys who stand in your way. It’s even ours Game of the Month on IGN Plus March! It will only take you about three and a half hours to complete the main story, but if you want to play to 100%, it will take you a little over five hours.

If you crave an open world game with much more action than Lil Gator Games, look no further than Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon. This standalone expansion for Far Cry 3 is a wild ride, with review at the time explained that, “No one with a clear mind can create something as fantastically absurd as Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon – so I’m glad that someone at Ubisoft is at least It’s a bit goofy at best.” In this game, play as Sergeant Rex “Power” Colt and save the world. It will take you just over four and a half hours for the main story and about nine hours to get everything done.

While not as action-heavy as Far Cry, No Straight Roads: Encore Edition still offers some interesting gameplay. This mini-game takes you to Vinyl City, where you’ll form a rock band to defeat the EDM Empire, NSR. It also features rhythmic combat that will keep you confident when fighting the boss of each region. It will take you about five hours to complete the main story, and going full on this band battle for 100% completion will take about 24 hours.

In keeping with the action genre, Retro City Rampage DX has a lot to offer but in 8-BIT form. This game mimics games like Grand Theft Auto series and complete with a full Story Mode, 60+ missions, 40+ arcade challenges, etc. It’s a huge world to explore, but won’t take up too much of your time. The main story takes only about five and a half hours, while 100% complete will take about eighteen and a half hours.

  • Time to win: Average 7h 11p for Main Story
  • Communication: Available on Playstation 4

This 2005 remake of Shadow of the Colossus is an awesome, must-play open world game for those who want to learn something short and thrilling. It was awarded 9.7 from us upon release, with assessor called it “outstanding” for its “improved controls, performance, and sheer graphical beauty.” Its main story will only take you just over seven hours to complete, but if you want to get into a full-fledged playthrough, it will take you around 26 hours.

Best rated short open world game

While it’s rare for a game to score as high as Shadow of the Colossus’ 9.7, there are other games on this list that still score highly. For example, Proteus received an 8.5 from us and was hailed as “a beautiful break from gaming tradition.” Grow Home is another game that earns 8.8 points for its “charming personality, pleasant physics, and satisfying controls”.

Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon also received rave reviews from us as an 8, with our reviewer calling it “a fun, engaging shooter you deserve to play.” The expansion is still one of the Best Far Cry game and is also a favorite in the franchise, making it well worth your time playing.

Hannah Hoolihan is a freelance writer working with the Tutorials and Commerce teams at IGN.

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