Valentine’s Day is about love and compassion. Couples typically go for romantic dinners, movies, special outings, and occasionally end the night more intimately. Then there are others who prefer a more laid back night, chilling on the couch with a loved one. These people might enjoy bonding over video games. While the medium is indeed thrilling, some games could ruin a Valentine’s Day in an instant. Are you looking for romance? The wrong game can put a stop to that. If you’re looking to keep your relationship going strong, here are some games to avoid this holiday season.
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe (Review)
Nintendo’s iconic franchise is the best on Switch. The chances are high that if you own a Switch, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is in your library of games. Racing alongside famous Nintendo characters is always exhilarating, with races often being fast, unpredictable, and tense. But while playing with others can be fun, it can also bring out the worst in people. Let’s set the scene. You’re currently in 8th place. Your girlfriend/boyfriend is enjoying a nice lead. Just as they’re about to win, you fire a blue shell that hits them right at the finish line, causing the AI opponents to pass them. A surefire victory becomes a tragic loss in more ways than you can imagine.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (Review)
The Switch’s latest installment of the popular Nintendo brawler is definitely a no-go this Valentine’s Day. Despite the expansive roster featuring characters from Fire Emblem, Metroid, Super Mario Bros., and Animal Crossing among others, the fighting game can lead to intense arguments. Having played this game with friends for countless hours, the simplest of battles often lead to shouting matches. Nothing says a ruined night like getting your significant other’s health meter up to 200% before knocking them into oblivion.
Super Mario Party (Review)
Nintendo, what’s up with making games destined to end up in arguments? Super Mario Party looks like a fun game on the surface, but it’s deceptively nefarious at its core. Let me paint a picture: You’re currently in the lead with two stars in your inventory. Your partner is nowhere near Toadette to purchase a star, but instead could steal an item from someone. Destined to win, they use coins at their disposal to take one of your hard-earned stars, effectively putting you in a lower position. When the turns are over, Lakitu reveals that you’ve not only not qualified for any of the bonus stars, but because of the one stolen from you, victory is unobtainable. Not to mention the fact that a lot of the minigames will have you screwing over loved ones when it comes to free-for-all events. Super Mario Party sounds like a great bonding moment, but it’s the antithesis of that in every possible way.
Overcooked 2 (Review)
I cannot stress this enough: Overcooked 2 will result in a failed relationship. Every game on the list so far revolves around competitive play. Sure, there are cooperative options in the aforementioned games, but the main draw is playing against other players. Overcooked 2 puts cooperation front and center; that’s where the problem lies. Overcooked 2 is a game about precision, constant talking, task management, speed, and the need to adjust at any given moment. The Overcooked games are not easy, and playing with someone who may not be acquainted with the rules may be catastrophic. I’ve played Overcooked with some of my closest friends during an Extra Life stream, and after three hours, we were at each other’s throats. No matter how strong the bond between you and your significant other may be, the powers of Overcooked 2 can put a wedge in your relationship.
Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes (Review)
I played this at E3 with one of the other Nintendo Enthusiast writers. It was at an indie developer party, and across the venue stood a lone Switch and a binder full of instructions. Intrigued, we attempted to diffuse the bomb on screen. I described different quadrants on the bomb, and my colleague ruffled through a binder full of instructions trying to tell me how to appropriately make it out of the situation we found ourselves in. I frantically tried to convey the symbols that I was looking at, but our communication wasn’t up to par. After a fatal error, “we died” and decided to start again.
This time, the roles were reversed. I started scrolling through what felt like a never-ending binder of papers looking for a solution. Regardless of the position I found myself in, my attitude became more agitated, stressed, and hopeless. It’s the type of game that requires patience, respect, cooperation, and communication. It asks you to trust your partner and vice versa. Are you describing the right features of the bomb? Do you understand your partner’s instructions? Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes is a test of trust in a way that no other game on Switch provides. A few failed attempts at this game with a significant other may require diffusing of an entirely different situation.
Are you planning on playing video games with your boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife this Valentine’s Day? If so, what games do you have on the agenda? Regardless of what you decide to play, try to skip the games I mentioned above so that you can avoid a potentially catastrophic night that is meant to be about love and compassion instead of fighting and arguments.
Andrew Gonzalez is the Co-Editor-In-Chief of Xbox Enthusiast. When not writing about Xbox, he’s usually reading comics, talking about Taylor Swift, and dreaming of the perfect Jet Force Gemini Reboot. You can follow him on Twitter. @AJGVulture89