The Top 10 Most Immersive Games Ever Made

7. Halo: Combat Evolved

Halo: CE is a very critically-acclaimed game, this is not new, but there is something the Halo series lost from the pioneering original: immersion. Just exactly what this list is about, and Halo: CE had it in spades. You were the Master Chief, a cybernetically- and genetically-enhanced killing machine with a gravely voice and a brain full of the knowledge to operate any vehicle and weapon. Also, a side-note, the graphics for this game at its time of release were absolutely phenomenal. Anyway, stepping out of the crashed escape pod on the second level and onto the alien grass of the Halo for the first time, with a sky of faint purples and an omnipresent ring over your head, is one of the most memorable experiences in all of gaming for me. This game reeked in atmosphere, and, though it is now a little dated, the technology behind it was unmatched. Animations were incredible. Sound and graphics were especially unmatched, and the voice-acting was generally above average. Still, Halo: CE was a thrill ride with a conscience, and it never let you forget where you were, amongst the aliens, the flood, the dying-off humans, and the perilous journey incessantly ahead of you.

8. Mass Effect (series)

Bioware is one of those developers that you can just rely on to make a great game. They blew the world away with KOTOR, and they did it again with the Mass Effect series. Mass Effect, quite literally, speaks for itself, as in, the conversations are arguably the most engaging in all of gaming. You actually come to care about the characters and your squadmates, always wanting what’s best, or what’s worst. The graphics are always excellent, and among the best for their time, (though ME1 had substantial performance issues) and the jaw-dropping amount of lore and backstory put into the series is staggering. If you go through every side mission, the main story, and most conversations, the game’s  Codex will be full of hours upon hours of narrated and un-narrated information about alien homeworlds,  xenoviruses, human history between our time and the game’s time, and countless, countless entries for you lore-devouring pleasure.

9. Metal Gear Solid (series)

MGS cannot get enough of story and brilliant visuals. Each game since the PS1 entry has set graphical standards, along with cinematic standards. Before MGS, the whole fad about making games more movie-like wasn’t very popular, but this series pioneered it. The main thing going for MGS that makes it immersive is the brilliant characters and (though sometimes convoluted) great story. It knows just how to suck you in, make you give a crap about what’s happening, and play the game with a deliberate purpose.

10. Dark Souls

I recently reviewed Dark Souls, and it’s one of my favorite games ever made, but it also has one of the greatest atmospheres of any game I’ve ever played. The environments are vastly detailed and varied, and the NPCs and enemies are almost always utterly gorgeous. The tone is dark, haunting, harrowing, and unforgiving. You literally project yourself into this game. That is, if you’re one of the gamers with enough ‘mansack’ to play it (it’s really not too hard, you just can’t be impatient). For those that are, I speak to and for you: this game wrenches at your mental stability. There are points in the game that you absolutely dread and can barely convince yourself to make the next step. It isn’t because it’s a bad section, or you’re bored, but because you’re genuinely scared, cautious, and worried. Death costs a heavy price in this game, and that constant omen hanging over you makes you ever more delved into the game itself. It does wonderfully well at making you feel what an actual soldier in these horrific conditions would feel.

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  • smartalix

    What about Half-Life?

  • sean

    howabout making some sort of vote instead of pulling games out of your ass.

  • me

    how about you shut the fuck up its not your post…

  • Bouzane

    No offense but this list is terrible. You list Halo but not Half-Life? Do you even know what immersive means?

  • Fading

    What about the S.T.A.L.K.E.R series, or even Half Life?

  • Blaz

    I have only played a few of these titles, I will have to check the others out. You should also try playing the Soul Reaver series.. the story and dark graphics and sound really pull you in.

    • Reaper

      Good game. SR2 had a really weird ending though

  • zzyzx

    How did I know these would only be games from the last two generations. Seriously? Older games exist you know. And a lot of them were WAY more immersive. Try Super Metroid or early Castlevania games. Or most Zelda games

    • Blak Out

      Metroid was in his youth so possibly never played any of those, and Zelda has had the spotlight several times, they go without saying. Or you could make your own list since you hate this one so much.

  • Xav

    Immersive… I do not think that word means what you think it means. Mass Effect is about the only thing on this list that I would actually describe as being immersive and Halo shouldn’t be anywhere near it (books and extended media don’t count). Immersion usually relates to a games ability to draw you in with elements OTHER than it’s characters and story. Ingame universes that have tangible relationships and back stories (like elder scrolls, mass effect even GTA) because the developers go to great lengths to make it seem like these games have their own worlds with it’s media and its own concepts of how these worlds work.

  • TrollingDragon3669

    noting or pertaining to digital technology or images that deeply involve one’s senses and may create an altered mental state: immersive media; immersive 3-D environments.
    just fyi that is what it means…. just figured id throw this out for all the rage posts i just saw. SO FUN i love you all k,night ;p