The weather outside is scorching, it’s the dog days of summer after all, so what’s better than remaining inside to play a few good games? Well, this: Playing titles that feature gameplay elements that recall the cooler moments of our existences. From adventures games to fighters to racers, we present five cool video games that will help keep your brains off the rising temperatures.
Cruis’n USA (1994)
An arcade racer that was eventually ported to the Nintendo 64, Cruis’ n USA let players race all over (you guessed it) the USA using backflips, turbo, and outrageous stunts. Basically, this game does everything it can to blow the virtual breezes in your face while you race across the country in a plethora of different cars. Time to lean back in the convertible and put the top down.
Cool Addition: Cruis’ n USA may have garnered the most attention, but the series spawned a number of sequels. These include Cruis’ n World, Cruis’ n Exotica, and Cruis’ n Velocity.
Mortal Kombat Trilogy (1996)
Mortal Kombat Trilogy, released on the original PlayStation platform in September 1996, is considered one of the series best entries as it contains all the characters from Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 (as well as Raiden and Baraka), and the arenas from the original Mortal Kombat and Mortal Kombat II. This might seem an odd choice for a “stay cool” game given the fire and burning associated with Mortal Kombat (hello, Scorpion!), but with characters like Sub-Zero and Rain in MK Trilogy, there’s enough ice and water to chill any hot head.
Cool Addition: With Sub-Zero, Cyber Sub-Zero, and the Rain DLC, the Mortal Kombat remake’s one of the coolest games around.
Jet Moto (1996)
Released the month after Mortal Kombat Trilogy, Jet Moto let players feel the virtual breeze cutting through their hair and water splashing on their faces. Featuring hoverbikes splattered with Mountain Dew and Butterfingers logos, Jet Moto is the fictional, aquatic version of motocross. While the difficulty may turn some gamers away, Jet Moto is a great racer for players to dream of cool times.
Cool Addition: Jet Moto was so spectacular (at the time) that it went on to spawn two sequels, Jet Moto 2 and Jet Moto 3. Unfortunately, neither one of them fared very well.
Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker (2003)
Wind Waker, an action-RPG and the tenth installment in The Legend of Zelda series, is set on an ocean called “The Great Sea.” This body of water features 49 sections arranged on a grid, with each section containing an island or small group of islands. Most of the game, players will find themselves sailing between islands using the Wind Waker, a baton that influences the wind with a series of music pieces.
Cool Addition: The game Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass, for the Nintendo DS, picks up right after the events of Wind Waker allowing players to set sail on the Great Sea once more.
Heavy Rain (2010)
Quantic Dream’s Heavy Rain is a dramatic thriller modeled after film noir. The game features four characters involved with the mystery of the Origami Killer, a serial killer who uses extended periods of rainfall to drown his victims.
Cool Addition: As if having to deal with an immense amount of rain throughout the entire game weren’t enough, one scene has players attempting to escape from a car that is rapidly sinking in a river. What better way to stay cool than to be in a completely submerged car?