Gaming to help with Depression/Anxiety

From my personal experience, it’s very hard to convey to others what is causing you depression.

Mostly passing of time or arrival of good times can truly help someone out from depression.

So while you are waiting, games are great for distraction and an unbiased support in time of the need.


First of all, I wish you all the best. If you want someone to talk privately to, to let off you chest, feel free to pm me and we could move on some instant messaging platforms. I hope you deal with it in the best possible manner.

Back to your original question. Call of Duty Warzone is the best game to forget everything. You have to get so focused all the time, you just loose yourself in it, especially if you can find a crew. It helped me a lot to forget some of the stuff that was bothering me. It demands a lot of your time, focus and energy. I tried with some singleplayer games but they weren’t doint it for me.

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Recommendation would be Sea of Thieves specifically if you can find a crew. Use Looking for Group if not. With the right group of ppl it can a genuinely incredible social experience full of charm and amusement. Lots of ppl make real friends from that game.

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Hey Jamie

I don’t have long as I am taking the kids to school then the cat to the vet, I just wanted to reach out quick before giving your question the time it deserves over a cup of Darjeeling.

I have suffered depression in one way or another most of my life, and in recent years my anxiety has gotten worse (and better) in waves. I too have had more than my fair share of compulsions which every time seem to get harder to ignore.

I just wanted you to know you aren’t alone, and though I wouldn’t think of myself as any sort of expert I am here for you if you ever needed a chat, in fact I insist :smiley:

Some quick things that help me, I would like to mention aside from gaming, is:

Being outside, or moving or exercising in any small way, ring fit adventures is great for this as well.

A routine, however small calms me greatly, I have an enjoying cup of tea and browse a happy place for 20 minutes or so on a morning. I make time for me, I am as important as the kids or any work or chores that need doing.

Though its easier said that done, finding a happy place is a great help to me, here for example or another small community/discord where it isn’t overwhelming and you aren’t afraid to be you. Though I have never even come close to using it, get rid of social media.

I’m from the UK but live in Germany so am in the same timezone if you ever needed to chat or team up, as I say I can reply later over my Darjeeling with some answers to your actual question :slight_smile:

It is impossible for me to believe these words sometimes when people have said them to me but they are true for us all, If only you could know how important you are to the lives of others, and those you meet, how important you will be to those you have yet to meet. You’re not alone flower, and you are already so much further and so much braver than you realise.

Love, Cerys :heart:


OK well sorry @JAMIE_ODST that didnt take as long as I thought. Some things I would recommend as things which have delighted me in recent times. Though I don’t use gaming directly to deal with my issues its certainly a highlight of my day.

No Man’s Sky. GAMEPASS!

A beautiful game with a beautiful soundtrack and aesthetic, and once you’re an hour or so in and have the recipes you need to warp between stars the universe is your oyster. A genuinely touching and affecting main storyline, and some good old fashioned side distractions to keep you hooked. Don’t bother with survival, as its just a chore more than difficult. :slight_smile:

Yakuza Like A Dragon

This is a camp, colourful and an enjoyable turn based romp through Japan. The English dub is wonderful and the cast great. Though it still stumbles with decent representation here and there, its better than most. Ichiban is daft, guileless and just a lovely relatable character. I enjoyed this immensely.

Destiny 2 / Division 1 or 2

Ill put these together as the represent the same thing for me, something to have on and enjoy the mechanics of bimbling around the world checking off some dailies or weeklies. Good looking games, which play very well and tickle that looter itch very well. Though (as always) more fun with friends I can play an hour or so of either of these games and feel good.

Though I guess this goes for any MP game of chance if you’re playing with friends, I tend not to like competitive stuff as that triggers me a little, but SoT can be amazing when you’re riding the peak of a wave, but it can really drain and upset me if its in a trough.

Ring Fit Adventure

We use it as an excuse to get some blood pumping rather than just immediately relaxing on an evening and the RPG aspect of it is just too much fun. I’ve no idea how much it helps from a getting fit PoV but it certainly can’t hurt and when I’m achey I tend to sleep better. :smiley:

As I say I’m in Germany so we’re practically neighbours, feel free to add me (Randomlampy) and I’ll happily join in with any MP game you fancy, I enjoy being with people I know even if its briefly via a forum than dipping a toe into the scary ocean of PuG’s :slight_smile:

Thats my Tea and happy place quota for now, have a fabby day!

Cerys :green_heart:


Yakuza 0 is so good! I spent almost 100 hours in it in the end and didn’t really notice haha.

I’ve just really enjoyed a run through Ace Combat 7 on gamepass and once I had got used to the controls felt like a Top Gun ace! - Great soundtrack.

I too suffer from Anxiety and depression and have just been through a rough patch recently - still going through it in many ways. I’m making sure I get out and doing a couple of miles jog or a nice walk every day/two at least and making lists of tasks to help me feel my accomplishments for the day. No matter how small the task, It helps me personally feel I have done something productive with my time and helps my anxiety.

Hope you feel better soon! :smiley:

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Mental Health over Everything! Stay strong. :slight_smile:

You might have already played some of these but I’ll list some that I found to be relevant and some that helped me through some tough times.

A Short Hike:

It is an open world exploration game in which the player is tasked with reaching the summit of a mountain to get cellphone reception. Super cute and chill game, possible to complete in one sitting, had me smiling throughout.


Again, a platformer game possible to finish in one sitting, hand-drawn art and animation oozes through every frame, a heartfelt story and the music is sublime. A few puzzle elements but nothing stressful.

Hyper Light Drifter

Hyper Light Drifter is a special game for me, it was a game I followed the development of for many years and its aesthetic sensibilities were something I gravitated towards a lot and the game lived up to my expectations. The art, music, combat, the mysterious story/lore are all phenomenal.


Journey but underwater, very calming and you could spend hours just swimming around with the fish, again can be finished in one sitting, the end section is honestly one of the most ethereal experiences I had in all of gaming.

Hope you get through these times and feel better soon. This forum has been a sort of sanctuary for myself as of late, personally dealing with issues of anxiety, hopelessness myself as I navigate my post-education life trying to find a stable spot in life where I can balance my well being, family and work, it’s been hard, but in a way, coming to this forum everyday and talking to so many people all across the world has been rather cathartic in a way. So that’s my contribution to this I guess, that there are people out here who all come together and celebrate one another in conversations, however goofy or heated some may get lol, guess that’s part of the experience and that we’re here for each other!

Get well and stay well! :smiley:

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I am incredibly overwhelmed by the kindness of your reply, It seriously made my morning and I’ll consider everything you said, I’ll try and sort myself out a routine and take the advice you have given me.

No mans Sky sounds like it might peak my intrest I have not played it since it first released on PS4 and heard it’s had huge updates since,

I used to be on the Destiny hype but had to quit as it was just too much BUT Division 2 might be a good shout with the recent updates!

Yakuza I am downloading 0 (Zero) currently so I hope to get into the franchise!

Ring Fit is a interesting one I’ll have to see what it’s all about!

But seriously man the fact you took so much type to right that all out just to reach out is amazing I can’t even describe how nice it was to see, forgive me if I can’t explain it properly I’m just not used to it :stuck_out_tongue:

I’ll throw you a add later my friend my GT: JAMIE ODST

I hope you have a good day man I hope you are not going through a bad time yourself atm.

Thank you so much

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Thank you so much for taking the time to sort this list out for me I have actually played none of these! I’ll browse the store later and grab one or two!

I hope your doing okay too man so totally understand the life stresses of post education but I assure you it will come together and fall into place for you.

I totally agree I use this forum to escape myself and have never had a issue with anyone I very grateful for this place, it’s funny I wonder if the guys who run this realise how important this place is for people like Us, well if they didn’t I hope they do now :slight_smile:

Thank you for the well wishes my friend it means the world I find it crazy people have reached out to me on here with replies like this it’s very heartwarming

Hope you are doing okay my friend and stay safe

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I am very looking forward to diving into it!

Ace Combat is a interesting one I feel I may have played one in my teenage years so maybe I’ll give the one on game pass a go now you mention it.

Thank you for the suggestions my friend I’m trying to sort myself out a routine like many suggested and trying to get outside more. (hard to do with uk lockdown :P) I do like the list idea so I may steal that one from you haha.

I hope you are okay my friend it’s never a great time in life going through this but I hope your rough patch ends soon, keep your chin up and reach out if you need to. Stay safe and thank you again for taking the time to help.

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Thank you Tavish and thank you for the msgs on Xbox last night it is very appreciated

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I agree completely my friend

Thank you

I’ve been in a similar situation with off/on anxiety and depression over the years and it’s not easy! I don’t use social media at really and like you had real life friends who don’t game, and don’t understand mental health so I kinda cut them off lol! My partner and I both came from terrible families as well so it’s basically me and my partner now and it actually feels better even though there’s alot of social isolation as a result which is particularly hard on my partner who has struggled to find female friends with similar interests.

I find gaming really helps - my partner has similar issues and she and I game more than we watch TV these days. Myself on Xbox and my partner on Switch :sweat_smile:

One game that works well for me is Rocket League - although you’d probably want to turn off text chat from other xbox players as it can get a bit toxic. I don’t play many MP games at the moment but will be all over the new stuff this year like Halo Infinite and Battlefield 6 so if you want more like minded gamers to play with I’m one :smiley:

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I honestly get it my friend… real life can be cruel and so can the people but maybe they don’t understand as it’s hard to understand someone’s mental health without suffering yourself.

I hope your okay man and feel free to pm me on here if you need to vent or anything.

Thank you I will. Be sure to look after yourself and don’t let the people around you bother you. This place has kinda been a safe haven for me from real life socials and I have seen you have been very active here. Add some of the guys on here they are all friendly :slight_smile:

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I had to do the same myself my friend having to cut people out is hard specially as I don’t have a partner atm (Breakup a couple years ago kinda scarred me to find another :joy:) I am glad you are your partner are doing better now you have got rid of those kinda people!

Rocket League is a great shout! I use to play it years ago maybe it’s time to jump back in! I play Overwatch bud I am more then used to Toxic chat haha but thank you!

I will also be playing Halo and BF6 bud so feel free to add me JAMIE ODST is my Gt

Thank you for reaching out and giving me some advice it is highly appreciated and overwhelmingly nice! Take care my friend

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Thankyou for the lovely reply,

just quickly so you’re sure; It is, and will remain my absolute pleasure to be here if you need an ear or just someone to play something quick. My life is so busy with kids and work and jut general family stuff I may not always reply with speed, yet I will always reply.

I am currently riding a high I have not felt for some time, so I am good thanks. High spots can be a time for anxiety as I tend to worry about the inevitable low spot, but for now I am good and trying to enjoy that. Also its a little thing and I know you don’t mean anything, and I’m not upset or having a go, but Cerys would be preferable to man… Or flower, I’m from Sunderland and like calling people flower, flower :slight_smile: (of course let me know if you prefer not to be called flower)

Anyway, back to games.

You have a series X (You lucky bum) so NMS will look a treat if the PS5 version is anything to go by. Its been constantly updated, the loop and gameplay remains by and large the same as launch but so much extra has been added to contextualise that loop, a story to keep you intrigued; end game goals like Freighters, bases, cities, MP (if you care for it) and just the overwhelming calmness of the soundtrack and the “aimless” wandering. As I say, don’t bother with survival, its not harder just more of a chore (I only did a run for the achievements then never touched the save again)

Destiny 2 I have fell in and out of love with almost constantly since launch, it is sooooooo good to play, but its so convoluted with quests and hidden things and me feeling like before I boot it up I need to check on Reddit what I need to do.

Division 2 I got back into and though the story can be problematic from a political PoV (general Ubi Ham-handedness) and Ubisofts constant cry of “our game about a world ending pandemic in the capital of the free world isn’t making a political statement”. Its mechanically very satisfying to play, and again looks lovely on the Series X. (damn your series X having eyes) :stuck_out_tongue:

Also though I don’t enjoy competitive games typically I am not adverse to them in a social situation, or where there isnt the anxiety of “feeding” the other team if you’re not quite up to snuff, I have played BF occasionally purely solo queue, so that may be fun in the future.

Aside from that I have found Audiobooks a great way to manage my anxiety, not any “special” self help stuff but loved books I know inside out with a nice narrator can help some white noise to calm me.

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@JAMIE_ODST you’re not alone in how you feel. I’ve been there mate. Lived with depression & suicidal thoughts my whole life, basically.

Don’t let the world get you down. Every single day can be the start of something better. Delete all social media accounts, if you have any left. Stay away from the constant negativity of the online world. Talk to people in the real world, family or friends or professional help. I was amazed to discover just how caring people were (& just how much it helped) when I started to open up a bit. Exercise, especially these days when most of us are stuck in the house, is a great help as well. Even just walking.

As far as gaming goes, I see you’re a fan of Nintendo. Pretty much anything they make can lighten my mood. Their games are just so colourful & engaging.

I stay away from online multiplayer as a rule but everyone’s different so that could help for you. Sea of Thieves is hugely popular among this community, for example.

Gaming can & does help when you’re feeling down but the most important thing is making sure your head is in the right place in real life. Talking to people is the first thing to do. Don’t be afraid to ask for professional help. Stay strong & stay positive. Every single day can be a new beginning. Every one.



So many people suffer from Anxiety these days, it seems to be that the modern way of life is just too much on top of jobs, family etc. Never mind the global Pandemic.

I try to walk 5 miles a day as that burns off stress. It takes about 90 minutes. In the UK we are not restricted to an hour these days that was only the first lockdown so don’t worry about that.

The Yakuza series are a great way to concentrate on a whole mini world. Yakuza 0, 1 and 2 got me through the Lockdowns last year as a nice distraction and a bit of foreign travel.

Gris is also a great game that actually deals with depression as a subject but Is not a downer and shows that there is light at the end of the tunnel

Take care of yourself and try to avoid the 24hr news. That helps a lot.

Thank you man I appreciate it I will take your advice and play some Nintendo stuff tonight :slight_smile: hope you are doing well my friend.

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Tell me about it man and oh really? For some reason I thought we was still restricted to a hour :S my bad thanks for letting me know!

I am going to start Yakuza 0 tomorrow looking forward to a new franchise to get into to! Grid? I’ll look into that one not sure I heard of it thanks for the suggestion!

I avoid the news atm anyway mate it’s way too doom and gloom at the moment it gets me down.

Thanks for the sound advice bud. Hope you are doing well yourself :slight_smile:

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