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The best video games to play during lockdown, from Animal Crossing to The Sims 4 | The Independent

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orced inside by the danger of coronavirus, where do we turn to for a sense of escape?

The answer, for many, is video games. Gaming statistics have skyrocketed in recent weeks – in the US, Verizon reported an increase of 75 per cent since the quarantine began – with people increasingly relying on their consoles and computers for diversion.

Even though a lot of people will be content to stick with old favourites such as Fifa, Fortnite or Grand Theft Auto while waiting for the lockdown to end, others may want something a little more off the beaten track.

This is a list of games that are well worth checking out over the coming weeks, be they lesser-known independent gems such as Kentucky Route Zero or games with particular resonance during the time of self-isolation, like Death Stranding.

Here are 17 games to play if you’re in lockdown or self-isolating…

Animal Crossing: New Horizons (2020) – Nintendo Switch

There are few games more antidotal to the stress of the current global crisis than Animal Crossing. Suffused with good cheer, New Horizons provides you with the perfect (admittedly kid-focused) sense of community while you’re stuck inside your house.

‘New Horizons’ uses a real-time calendar system to mimic seasonal weather patterns

(Nintendo)

Cities: Skylines (2015) – all platforms

With everybody stuck inside, it can sometimes feel like society is on the brink of a breakdown. In Cities: Skylines, you can construct your own virus-free metropolitan utopia, with a terrific amount of customisation available.

Control (2019) – PC/PS4/Xbox One

There’s more than a whiff of The X Files to Remedy Entertainment’s acclaimed 2019 shooter Control. Playing as Jesse Faden, you must explore the “Federal Bureau of Control” and defeat a sinister force known as “The…