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Games You Should Avoid Playing During The Coronavirus Pandemic

Times are strange. Right now, we're living in the midst of a global pandemic. If it sounds like the start of a video game, that's because there are plenty of games that start with an illness and end with an apocalypse. Don't let that freak you out: this is reality, not fiction. The fictional world of video games seem to disregard the leaps and bounds humanity has made scientifically and medically. In these games, things have to fall apart in order for the plot to get interesting. 

Just keep that in mind if you dare to play any of these games. We really wouldn't recommend them, since much of their plot revolves around global pandemics. Instead, consider some immersive, relaxing games that have nothing to do with disease whatsoever.

The Last of Us details a real threat

You watch as the world crumbles into chaos during the first few minutes of The Last of Us. Thanks to a fungus — not a virus — people turn into veritable rage monsters. This fictional cordyceps fungus is based on a real-life fungus, which is a distinctly unsettling thought. Could this fungus one day decide to stop infecting ants and start infecting humans? Well, no, but it's still unpleasant to consider.

You're unlikely to see a cordyceps pandemic, especially now that you know the power of social distancing: can't get bit if you're safe at home ... hopefully. Regardless of its status as one of the best games ever made, you should probably pass on a playthrough of The Last of Us for now. It's a recipe for anxiety, likely to spark fears of infection, and only make you feel the fact that you're in the midst of a global pandemic all the more keenly.

The Division 2 shows what comes after a pandemic

Tom Clancy's The Division 2 is also about the aftermath of a global pandemic. This time around it was a virulent strain of smallpox that decimated the population. Rather than occurring naturally, this pandemic was engineered by an environmental terrorist group. Now that it has wreaked havoc, you see the results of a world without order. The Division in question is trying to restore order, but that's easier said than done after what the "Green Poison" did to the world. 

People are bitter, angry, and gathered in militia groups following the pandemic. Some thrive in anarchy, while others strive to take over and rule with an iron fist. It's kind of scary to think about who would come into power after the collapse of order as you now know it. Better not to think of it at all, at least at the moment, and play a game other than The Division 2.

Plague Inc. hits too close to home

As you may have surmised by the title, Plague Inc. is all about the plague. As the morally dubious player, your job is to spread your bespoke plague to the whole of the world and wipe out humanity. This game can almost serve as a simulation of the spread of the coronavirus ... which might be why China decided to ban Plague Inc. from being played by its citizens. 

It might be for the best to skip out on a playthrough of Plague Inc. The gameplay is a chilling echo of what's happening right now on your local news station. Wouldn't it be better to take your mind off of the plague outside? Consider playing games that are less focused on diseases and more geared towards, well, anything else. Better yet, choose a game that centers on fostering connection and a sense of community, something the world could use a bit more of.