What Do You Play When You’re Depressed?

Mitchell Lineham
4 min readNov 4, 2021


Hello! I hope you’re doing well, reader. This is the first entry in my new series “What Do You Play When You’re …”, and each entry will focus on a different emotion. I’ve been feeling a bit down recently, so I figured depression would be a good one to begin with. Maybe these games will bring you joy in your dark times, too! Anyway, what games do you play when you’re feeling depressed? Here are some of the ones I play, and why I think they’ve been so helpful to me.

Final Fantasy XIV

Final Fantasy XIV, for me and I’m sure many others, has been something of a life-saver. I’ve made new friends, and have gotten to know two of my very closest friends through playing this game, and the world and love that has gone into it is always warming and inviting. Eorzea is something like a second home, and the players and developers have worked incredibly hard to make it so welcoming.

Ace Attorney

Ace Attorney is one of my all-time faves. Fun fact, I met my girlfriend through a competition we both won for this game! It’s become a sentimental love, but in general I’m just so inspired by the cast and taken in by the game’s twists and turns, and its outlandish humour, that it brings me back time and time again with just as much enjoyment as the first time. This one’s real special — The Great Ace Attorney is a fantastic entry too!

Apex Legends

I never really liked Apex Legends when it first launched, and I’ve written about the game before, but it really has grabbed me in the past year or so. I absolutely love it. The lore and characters has been a big part of this, but I also love playing this alone just as much as I love playing with my friends. Respawn has done a lot of good work into making this an inclusive and welcoming game, and its on-going updates and events always leaves something fresh to do and focus on.

Animal Crossing: New Horizons

This one basically speaks for itself, you know? Animal Crossing: New Horizons is the epitome of chill, and it’s so lovely and calm and inviting with its sweet villagers, abundance of customisation options and decorating, and I’ve made some lovely memories through playing it. I’m about to sink many more hours into this one designing homes!

Kingdom Hearts

I love Disney, I love Final Fantasy, and I love Kingdom Hearts. Disney is another thing I go to when I need comfort and cheering up, so it makes sense that I’d also be such a big Kingdom Hearts fan. Its focus on bringing light to darkness and the importance of friendships is a focus I enjoy, and I still think it’s a wondrous experience being able to explore so many Disney worlds in a video game!


Bloodborne? BLOODBORNE? Bloodborne is a banger, and its general gameplay loop, atmosphere and deep lore keep me focused enough that even a game as bleak as this one can bring me some uplifting joy. It’s so satisfying when you beat a difficult boss too, and its new game+ mode always brings new challenges. Maybe it’s time for another playthrough soon…

Disney Magical World 2

Oh, I haven’t played this one yet, I’m just thinking ahead. Thanks!

Thanks for reading! I’d love to hear what games you play for comfort when you’re depressed, so please let me know (if you’d like), and feel free to discuss with me on Twitter!



Mitchell Lineham

Writing "The Presence of Eve", repped by Tiger Lily Publishing Co. | Hang around for Otome and Disney | Mostly active here, Instagram, Letterboxd and Goodreads