Gaming has never been more popular. According to Juniper Research, there are now more than three billion video gamers worldwide. The sheer number of interested players has helped catapult the industry to a worth of over $197 billion this year—which could shoot up to $268 billion by 2025.
With so many more people interested in gaming than ever before—and willing to spend money on their favorite titles—there’s no surprise that there’s a game that meets just about every interest. The range of silly and competitive titles grows every day, from apps that let you explore the latest fashion trends to eSport-MOBAs like League of Legends.
Players are on the lookout for games that have high refresh rates, unforgettable characters on adventures, and a little Hollywood-style production. Another feature many are looking for is a multiplayer mode, which lets them play with their friends or at least place on a leaderboard.
But which multiplayer games are worth trying out with friends? And which single-player games are worth keeping on your radar? Let’s dive into some of the best options for each, which you may not have heard of before.
Best Single-Player: Slots
In the last few years, Canadian provinces have started to rehash their approach to online gaming. For residents of areas like Toronto and Hamilton, they can now access the world’s most popular casino game straight from a remote device, and that’s online slots. When it comes to casino games, brainbusters like blackjack and poker are the focus of many gaming publications—but slots are the fan favourite.
That’s because each slot offers a totally new adventure, including unique bonus rounds and features that trigger special sequences. Each title offers a new twist on the excitement of spinning reels, and with dozens of themes available, you’ll have enough titles to keep you entertained for hours.
Best Multiplayer: Death Stranding
The world’s top video games are multiplayer titles, including Apex Legends, Fortnite, and Rocket League—to name a few. But, just like poker and blackjack usurp the attention on casino gaming, plenty of multiplayer titles slide under the radar.
One of the most unique projects, hailed by PC Mag as ‘fascinating and unconventional’, is Death Stranding from Japanese creator Hideo Kojima. It’s a foray into various unknown wastelands, where your partners will trail after you down a desolate path—and you can leave them resources along the way as they forge into the same madness as you. Dubbed a ‘strand game’ for its unconventional social features, Death Stranding has helped create a totally new genre.
Best Single-Player: Psychonauts 2
As outlined with slots and Death Stranding, what makes a video game worth trying is its unique premise. Slots promise short-form excitement and variation in theme, while Death Stranding introduces players to a totally new setup. Psychonauts 2 does a bit of both.
It offers excitement because the game is full of intrigue. Players must navigate an espionage-filled world where they’ll develop their psychic skills to protect others. Given its unique premise, it’s been a cult hit since the original was released back in 2005. If you have even a passing interest in mystery and weirdness, look no further for a winning single-player game.
Best Multiplayer: Forza Horizon 5
Not all video games need to bend the mind or present a totally new premise. For some multiplayer games, success might mean creating a title that you want to play over and over again. Forza Horizon 5 offers this as its setup is simple: players navigate a breathtaking Sonoran countryside in an off-roading car—which might be a particularly appealing setting for Canadians stuck indoors in January.
So, what makes this such a good option as a multiplayer game? First, it has an open-world environment that players can explore endlessly—and at their own pace. Second, it lets players soup up their cars—and who doesn’t like to show off a new body kit? Best of all, it’s got a battle royale game mode that lets players race their hearts out.