Today, open-world video games have gotten even better at delivering virtual worlds that are inspired by actual events and places.
Virtual tourism is not yet a thing, but it will be. It already is; we just do not know it yet. If you are like me, you have dreams of visiting many places around the world, but the restraints of real-world issues like work, financial means, family responsibilities, or maybe just a reluctance to spend hours on a plane or bus.
Well, there is an entertaining and exciting way you can do all that exploring and sightseeing, without leaving your house. Virtual tourism through videos games.
It may sound off at first, but game developers push to bring the most authentic, real-life experience to players every year. As a result, open-world games have become more popular, as gamers find more pleasure and entertainment in simulating everyday life and experiences. For example, the Sims was one of the most popular games in the 2010s because it allowed players to create the lives they wanted for themselves virtually.
ASSASSIN’S CREED: BROTHERHOOD
Released in 2010 as the third instalment of the highly acclaimed Assassin’s Creed series by Ubisoft, AC brotherhood is most likely the best in the series. This is because of the main character Ezio Auditore da Firenze and how much detail is captured to bring the Renaissance period of the city of Rome to life. Whether on foot mingling with the vibrant people, on horseback, or acrobatic runs on rooftops, Ezio brings Rome to life in every possible way.
To recreate 1947 San Francisco, the developers at Team Bond went all out, using drones to capture aerial photos and model the city. You get to play detective, but you could just as easily become a tourist exploring all San Francisco has to offer.
The Shinjuku Ward in Tokyo, Japan, is one of the most popular tourist sites in Japan and happens to be packed with a rich history like everything else in Japan. So, it comes as no surprise that the city of Kabukicho in the Ward was the inspiration for Kamurocho, the fictional city in the Yakuza franchise. The beauty of the Yakuza franchise is that the city spans the different instalments of the game, which makes you discover a new face of the city with every release.
ASSASSIN’S CREED: VALHALLA
The closest thing you can find to a Viking experience today is watching the History Channel’s spellbinding series Vikings or playing AC Valhalla. Ubisoft could not have ave captured the life of these legendary Norsemen and their daily life any better. The game’s world is expansive, dense, and immersive, more often than not taking you away from the central mission of the title.
GRAND THEFT AUTO 5
To truly and fully grasp the depth of this world, you have to go to the top of Mount Chiliad, the highest point in the game, and overlook the sprawling city of Los Santos. The sight is breathtaking, and if you are a GTA fan, you will feel more than just joy. It is no surprise that fans keep going back to the game years later just to cruise around Los Santos and feel alive. It is undeniably one of the most realistic open-world games to date.
This list is not exhaustive by any means, and any one of the other beautiful worlds of Arkham City, Forza Horizon 4, Metal Gear 5: Phantom Pain, etc could have easily made this list. The goal is to introduce you to open-world gameplay in the most spectacular way possible. Have fun!