6 Open-World Games That Do Not Punish You For Ignoring The Main Story

Highlights Open-world games offer plenty of in-game content for players to experience beyond the main storyline, including side quests, mini-games, loot, and exploration. Some open-world games allow players to indulge in these distractions without fearing any negative repercussions on the main plot.

Open-world games have become one of the most common and beloved game genres of all time, as they offer plenty of in-game content for players to experience within and beyond the main storyline. Side quests, NPCs, mini-games, loot, and exploration all play a part in these games, which can often tempt players away from the main quest.

Players may be afraid to pursue these distractions due to the possibility they may feel the ramifications in the main plot of the game, but with some open-world games, they need not fear as they won’t be punished for their delays. The world will soon be there even after they have snagged that last shiny collectible.

6 The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim winterhold and the college of winterhold

When someone says open-world games, Skyrim is most likely one of the games that will come to mind. The fifth installment in The Elder Scrolls series was one of the most celebrated and popular entries, which saw players taking on the role of the Dragonborn, a legendary hero with the ability to use their voice to devastating effects. The world of Skyrim is threatened by the evil dragon Alduin, who only the Dragonborn can stop.

Even with the fate of the world hanging in the balance, players can choose to stray from the path to explore the picturesque world and partake in the side-quests on offer. Players can join factions, find and loot weapons, learn new Shouts, or even set down roots and start a family, and Alduin will patiently wait to further his plans of world domination until they are ready to progress the main story.

5 The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt The Witcher 3 Griffin Contract

Geralt is back and once more taking up the mantle of one of the titular monster slayers and the main protagonist of the series. In The Witcher 3, Geralt is on the tail of his adoptive daughter Ciri who is on the run from the Wild Hunt, a group of deadly wraiths who gallop ride across the skies on horseback, who are rumored to be omens of war in certain folkloric tales, but the true purpose is to find and capture slaves to serve the Alder Folk. The Elder Blood running through Ciri’s veins drew their wrath down on her head.

Geralt will have to travel far and wide across the world in search of the one last Gwent card he needs to complete his deck, as The Witcher 3 contains one of the most fun and addicting card games of all time. Not only is there plenty of Gwent to play, but bounties to take on, and beautiful women to woo. Players will have their hands full of fun to be had outside the main plot, and they don’t need to worry as the game won’t punish them for it.

4 Fallout: New Vegas Fallout New Vegas Matthews Farm

Obsidian’s foray into the Fallout universe resulted in the phenomenal New Vegas, which saw players on a quest for revenge after being shot in the head for being in the wrong place at the wrong time with the wrong item in their possession. With multiple factions all warring for power in the Mojave, New Vegas is a game full of choices and additional content to enjoy.

As such, no one could blame players for straying away from the main quest to sample the wonders scattered throughout the vast and post-apocalyptic world, and better yet, they won’t be punished for experiencing what it has to offer.

3 The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom Tears of the Kingdom Player Creates Rathian From Monster Hunter

Nintendo’s foray into open-world games with Breath of the Wild and Tears of the Kingdom were met with major success and adored by fans and critics alike. The second title, Tears of the Kingdom, brought more of what fans had come to love, combining an epic story and a cast of new and returning characters with an expansive open world for players to explore. Ganondorf is back and threatening the Kingdom of Hyrule once again, and it is up to series hero Link to save the day, once again.

But, should players wish to ignore the impending threat of doom, they are free to do so and can explore the open world and all it has to offer, from slaying camps of monsters, meeting up with old and new characters, and trying to track down every last Korok seeds which is an epic quest unto itself.

2 Red Dead Redemption 2 Best Weapons In Red Dead Redemption 2

Prequel to the excellent Red Dead Redemption, Red Dead Redemption 2 puts players in the saddle of Arthur Morgan, a member of the Van der Lin Gang, a posse of cowboys dealing with the decline of the Wild West and contending with rival forces such as government officials, gangs and other enemies. After running afoul of a man called Cornwall, they find themselves in the crosshair of the legendary mercenary gang the Pinkerton’s, who do their utmost to disrupt their operations and uproot their lives.

In the typical fashion of Rockstar Games’ titles, players are more than free to completely ignore the main plot line and instead travel the world of Wild-West America on horseback to experience its rural beauty and what may hide beneath. On top of that, Red Dead Redemption 2 has a fantastic multiplayer aspect, so players can gather together their own posse to enjoy multiplayer fun.

1 Baldur’s Gate 3 dank crypt baldur's gate 3 statue

Larian’s D&D RPG proved to be a hit success, bringing the trademark Larian-style RPG with lore and rules from the world of Dungeons and Dragons. In Baldur’s Gate 3, players control either one of the original characters or their own custom character. After being kidnapped by Mind Flayers and infected with a parasite that will transform them into another Illithid, players will be unleashed into the world of Faerun, tasked with the quest of finding someone capable of removing the parasite from their head.

But being able to experience the world of D&D in a video game, it would be a crime not to explore the world and its wonders. The world is jam-packed full of interesting characters, events, dungeons, and side-quests. Even with a ticking time bomb in their head, players will not be punished for ignoring their quest to rid themselves of it, and can instead uncover the many secrets hiding in Faerun.

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