With all the new releases we have every day, sometimes we forget about the old classic games that we dearly loved. Casual games as a genre became popularized in the early 2000s, during the early days of Big Fish Games. From fan-favorite hidden object games and time management games to addicting match 3 games and puzzle games, the casual gams industry definitely has plenty to offer. If you ever find yourself with some extra free time or bored at home, especially during this coronavirus pandemic, why not revisit some familiar favorites or try them out if this is your first go-around. This list combines few of the best classic casual games for PC and Mac from various genres, top-selling titles that will remain in our hearts for years to come.
Awakening: The Dreamless Castle
In the early days of hidden object adventure games, Boomzap Entertainment took the casual games world by storm with Awakening: The Dreamless Castle. The story of Princess Sophia and her awakening from a century-long slumber into an unfamiliar world spanned seven games and Awakening is considered one of the best fantasy hidden object series even to this day.
If you love builder Time Management games, then Royal Envoy is a must-play. This game franchise from Playrix is one of the most universally adored Time Management franchises to exist. Take the King’s challenge and build your way through gorgeous Medieval landscapes.
Mystery Case Files: Return to Ravenhearst
This Mystery Case Files sequel revolutionalized the genre by being the first hidden object game that heavily integrated adventure elements, leading to the widespread of HOPA games today. Take a journey deep into the haunted Ravenhearst Manor and defeat the evil in this classic hidden object adventure!
The original bubble shooter sensation from the early 2000s that got everyone raving about. Not only is Zuma incredibly addicting, but its ancient temple setting also makes for a very fun visual experience. I trust that you probably have come across this classic game at some point in your life, but if you find yourself bored at home, this old-but-gold goodie can still provide some much-needed distraction.
PuppetShow: Mystery of Joyville
Back when each new HOPA release felt like an event, PuppetShow: Mystery of Joyville was like a breath of fresh air. Then-newcomer ERS Game Studios launched on to the scene with a creepy and creative adventure that took everyone by surprise. While the PuppetShow series has churned out many more sequels since then, a revisit to this very first game is a trip worth taking.
To this day, Ranch Rush is still my personal favorite farming game series. Its bright colors, fast-paced gameplay, and a likable protagonist makes this (as well as its sequel) a delight for all Time Management fans. Ranch Rush offers some real beat-the-time challenge that is not often offered in today’s releases – an essential play for Time Management fans.
Hallowed Legends: Samhain
There was a phase in Elephant Games’ timeline that they opted for realistic visuals over obviously CGI graphics. Hallowed Legends: Samhain is one of the studio’s most successful attempts at blending reality with the gaming world. An infamous Celtic folklore comes true when the attendees of Samhain festival mysteriously disappear, can you learn all its secrets?
Cradle of Egypt
During the boom of the Match 3 genre on PC, Cradle of Egypt was one of its best-selling titles. Hop on a trip to Egypt, where you gt to construct all the world-famous landmarks – from Pyramids of Giza to the Sphinx. The game’s colorful visuals and dazzling effects are hard to deny, along with its expertly crafted gameplay.
Drawn: The Painted Tower
Iris has the gift of turning her drawings into real-life objects, but she is trapped inside the Painted Tower! In this cinematic adventure game from Big Fish Studios, you get to solve countless complex puzzles while exploring breathtakingly beautiful scenes. Drawn is composed of three fantastic installments, a trailblazing casual games series that has aged better than wine.
Blue Tea Games is mostly known for its iconic fantasy series Dark Parables, but the studio has also released an array of other excellent games over the years. Enlightenus gives the traditional hidden object format a spin. Instead of finding the objects, you get to return the objects to their respective spots on the scene. Combine this refreshing format with an enchanting theme – you have a winner!
While Dash games have unfortunately been pulled from many game portals as Playfirst got acquired by Glu and shifted to mobile, this original PC version of Cooking Dash still maintains its charm. For a period of time, the Dash series was the pinnacle of Time Management games – you could probably argue that Diner Dash practically invented the genre. However, it was Cooking Dash that further cemented the franchise’s popularity into the history books.
These are just a few examples from the massive library of classic casual games and I obviously have missed out on a lot, so feel free to comment your classic favorites down below for other players. If you are interested to find more games to play, check out our reviews. Or if you are looking for a good time playing hidden object games on your mobile devices, check out our curated guide.