10 Perfect Summer Video Games

There's about 1 month of summer left. And if you're looking for a summer-appropriate game to play then I've got you covered with some of my favorites! All 10 can be accessed by most folks with relative ease. Let me know if there are any you recommend for the season!
  1. Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE
    Teenagers and 20 somethings trying to break into the Japanese entertainment industry? Check. Monsters that thrive off of people's energy and the only way to save them is to put on a stellar performance? Check. Fun, fashionable outfits? Check. Fire Emblem characters? Check. Shin Megami Tensei style? Check. Tokyo Mirage Sessions is absolutely perfect for the summer and at 50-70 hours you'll grow attached to every character as you help them achieve their dreams of success.
  2. Super Mario Sunshine
    A bit of an oldie at about 14 years to the date now, but exploring a huge tropical island and using a water pack to get around makes this explicitly summer themed on its own. It's an expertly designed platformer that belongs in everyone's collection. You'll visit beach towns, theme parks, a haunted resort, docks, and even see some natural beauty at untouched bays. Also Yoshi came back for the first time in 3D! Thematically and mechanically this game is perfect.
  3. The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker
    Whether you play the 2003 original or the lovely HD remake nothing quite says summer like adventure. And while all Zelda games are technically adventures they are generally explicitly focused on you as the hero out to save the land. Wind Waker starts with you asleep on your home island, and your quest involves teaming up with friendly pirates to go off sailing in search of your little sister. Zelda typically feels like a holiday release. Wind Waker feels like a lighter, more relaxed experience.
  4. Bayonetta/Bayonetta 2
    Whichever Bayonetta game you play (play both if you can!) there's something about this irreverent, silly, sexy, action packed game that just feels perfect for the season! Aside from being the absolute best action game series on the market it's also one of the few that doesn't take itself seriously. It provides easy entry points for new comers and a ridiculous challenge for the best among us. It's filled with screen-filling bosses, ridiculous production value and the sharpest control ever!
  5. Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag
    Much like Wind Waker, nothing quite says summer like sailing on the high seas. But while in Wind Waker you befriend some pirates most of your time on the sea is alone. In Black Flag you're the captain of your very own pirate crew, and honestly, sailing with these guys while they break into song is so therapeutic. It's open world, it takes itself a little too seriously, and the combat becomes repetitive. But also, you're best friends with Blackbeard. This is summer done right!
  6. Splatoon
    Splatoon is a giant 4vs4 water gun fight. Let that settle in for a second while you imagine how appropriate that is for summer. Yes, you're firing ink instead of water but you're a kid who can turn into a squid and swim through the ink. The game is team-based territory control with short matches that you keep going back to. What makes Splatoon absolutely brilliant isn't just the catchy tunes, bright artwork, stylish outfits or cool designs: It's the fluidity of movement when playing. Brilliant!
  7. Tales from the Borderlands
    Arguably Telltale's finest game of recent years, Tales is like a road trip comedy featuring tricksters and cheats trying to survive in a hilariously unfair world. Characters discover things about themselves, find love, develop long lasting friendships and see exotic locales in this hilarious adventure game. You'll love every character whether good or bad and you won't stop laughing at the game's absurdity. More comedy releases please, Telltale!
  8. Viva Piñata/Viva Piñata: Trouble in Paradise
    Rare may be seen as irrelevant since leaving Nintendo, but they created one truly spectacular series in Viva Piñata. Whichever you play (probably the second game) you maintain a garden on Piñata Island where you attract piñata animals in your garden, nurture the population, let them mate, and ship them off to parties. It's lighthearted, silly, fun and very relaxing. Rare showed a lot of what made them untouchable in the 90's with this spectacular series.
  9. Tearaway
    You know Tearaway deserves to be on this list when it uses the Vita's front camera to make your face appear in the Sun that all the paper creatures see when they look up. Tearaway is the ultimate representative of the under-appreciated handheld taking advantage of all of its features to craft an unforgettable platformer. It's an arts and crafts game, it's an inventive platformer, it's a light-hearted adventure, and no matter how you slice it this beautiful game will make you smile.
  10. 80 Days
    A text adventure based on the classic Around the World in 80 Days. This wonderful, steampunk rendition is a text based game with some of the most brilliant writing in any game. It's short and replayable as you try your hand at going around the globe as quickly as you can. You'll go on adventures across various lands, discover things about people and in the process develop your own sense of wanderlust. This is essential gaming.