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Best Asynchronous Play Games

Asynchronous multiplayer are usually competitive but can be cooperative. Unlike other games, you don't have to play at the same time. Perhaps your opponent is in a different time zone, you are playing years after the person you are competing against, or perhaps you have a job or family commitments that the only game time is when the person you are playing against is in bed.

In these asynchronous multiplayer games, you usually see the other player as a ghost representation of how they played the level or circuit. Perhaps it's in Forza where you race against representations of real-world opponents. Perhaps it's in Horizon Chase Turbo where you see the ghosted cars of your Nintendo Switch friends who have raced the circuit you are on Or, perhaps you see the failed attempts of people you don't know in a temple in Phantom Abyss.

However the game provides this, it does so to give you the feel of playing against someone at the same time, although they actually played some time (maybe seconds, maybe hours or maybe years) ago. There have even been stories of teenagers discovering the ghost laps of deceased parents and being able to race them as if they were still alive.

DetailsList Details

Genres: Action, Adventure, Battle, Brain Game, Collecting, Communication, Creative, Fighting, Narrative, Physically Active, Platform, Point-and-Click, Puzzle, Race, Rhythm, Role-Play, Sequencing, Shooting, Simulation, Sports, Stealth, Strategy and Traversal
Era: 1997 - 2023
Total Games: 31
Total Likes: 706
 

 

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

Release Date: 28/04/2017, updated in 2022

Out Now: Switch

Skill Rating: 5+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person and Cartoon

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is a go-kart racing game where you race against Nintendo characters around different circuits, picking up power-ups, attacks and speed boosts. It is frantic and chaotic but still requires skills to do well.

Pokémon Legends: Arceus

Release Date: 28/01/2022

Out Now: Switch

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person, Cartoon, Day and Night, Open World and Weather

Pokémon Legends: Arceus is a game in the longstanding Pokémon series of role-playing games where you collect and battle Pokémon. Like the other games, you compete in turn-based battles and try and collect as many Pokémon as you...

The Tomorrow Children

Release Date: 06/09/2016, updated in 2022

Out Now: PS4 and PS5

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person, Day and Night, Open World, Persistant World and Weather

The Tomorrow Children is an online strategy game where you collaborate with other players to build, explore and develop communities. Unusually, it uses social economics and a Soviet Union-themed post-apocalyptic dystopia as the setting. You play a clone...

Mirror's Edge (Series)

Release Date: 14/11/2014, updated in 2016

Out Now: PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds

Components: 3D First-Person and Open World

Mirror's Edge and the follow-up, Mirror’s Edge Catalyst are free-running games where you traverse a futuristic city using aspects of urban exploration and parkour movements to complete missions and evade or fight enemies. The focus is on this...

Phantom Abyss

Release Date: 21/06/2021, updated in 2022

Out Now: Mac, PC and Xbox X|S

Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person

Phantom Abyss is a running and jumping game where you charge through temples to get to the exit. Your only tool is a whip that interacts with objects and can propel you forward. Along the way are numerous traps and difficult jumps to avoid. There are...

JellyCar Worlds

Release Date: 10/12/2022

Out Now: Apple TV, Mac, PC, Switch and iOS

Skill Rating: 5+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On and Cartoon

JellyCar Worlds is a puzzle game about a car made of jelly traversing a squishy world. You use the physics properties of the car and the objects in the world to get from A to B. It's an action puzzle game that stands out for the joyous novelty of a...

Kinsplant

Release Date: 26/09/2022

Out Now: Web

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Components: 2D Overhead, Open World and Pixels

Kinsplant is an adventure about searching for a fabled artefact buried somewhere in one of the four realms. Play is like a retro adventure game where you move around, fight enemies and hunt for an ancient artefact. However, the twist is that it has been...

Forza Motorsport 7

Release Date: 03/10/2017, updated in 2023

Out Now: PC, Xbox One and Xbox X|S

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Components: 3D First-Person, 3D Third-Person and Weather

Forza Motorsport 7 immerses players in the exhilarating thrill of competitive racing. From mastering the new motorsport-inspired campaign to collecting a wide range of cars to experiencing the excitement of driving at the limit, this is Forza reimagined.

Gran Turismo (Series)

Release Date: 01/01/1997, updated in 2017

Out Now: PS3, PS4 and PSP

Skill Rating: 14+ year-olds

Components: 3D First-Person and 3D Third-Person

Gran Turismo is a driving simulator that focuses on a photo-realistic driving experience. Players race real-world cars where bodywork and interiors are perfectly modelled. Whether hatchbacks or supercars, this game lets you step into the world of the...

Returnal

Release Date: 30/04/2021, updated in 2023

Out Now: PC and PS5

Skill Rating: 13+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person

Returnal is a sci-fi shooting game played in repeating rounds that slowly change the world and your character. You are a pilot stranded on a mysterious planet and must investigate and fight through the world to both survive and solve the repeating...

Nier: Automata

Release Date: 23/02/2017, updated in 2018

Out Now: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Components: 3D Third-Person

Nier: Automata is a role-playing game, that span off from the Drakengard series. It's set in an alternate future where there is a war between alien machines and human androids. But this isn't a game about winning the war. It's more focused on the plight...

Death Stranding

Release Date: 08/11/2019, updated in 2021

Out Now: Mac, PC, PS4, PS5 and iOS

Skill Rating: 16+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person, Open World, Persistant World and Weather

Death Stranding is an exploration game where you deliver supplies across a vast shattered, post-apocalyptic America while protecting and caring for a baby. It's intentionally slow, sometimes excruciatingly so, which means you carefully consider your...

Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit

Release Date: 16/10/2020

Out Now: Switch

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person

Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit is a kart racing game with a difference - You play on the Switch but use it to control a real-life Mario Kart that races around the floor of your living room. You see the race from the view of the car beamed back to the...

Sid Meier's Civilization (Series)

Release Date: 21/10/2016, updated in 2019

Out Now: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Components: 2D Overhead, Day and Night, Grid and Open World

Sid Meier's Civilization is a long-running strategy game where you develop a society from hunter-gatherer to space travel. There are many ways to approach this challenge; socially, militarily, politically or perhaps by building wonders to impress other...

Horizon Chase 2 (Series)

Release Date: 20/08/2015, updated in 2022

Out Now: Android, Apple TV, Mac, PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One, iOS and iPhone, iPad

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person and Day and Night

Horizon Chase 2 is the latest game in the Horizon Chase series of arcade racing games with a focus on competitive fun rather than realism; its graphics make it look like it was plucked from the nineties’ arcades, with a nod to Outrun and Lotus Turbo...

Rayman Legends

Release Date: 29/07/2013, updated in 2017

Out Now: PC, PS Vita, PS3, PS4, Switch, Wii U, Xbox 360 and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On and Cartoon

Rayman Legends is a platform game, the sequel to Rayman Origins, where you get sucked into a painting that takes you to a fantasy world with all sorts of creative running and jumping challenges.

Forza Horizon 4

Release Date: 25/09/2018

Out Now: PC, Xbox One and Xbox X|S

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Components: 3D First-Person, 3D Third-Person, Day and Night, Open World and Weather

Forza Horizon 4 is a thrilling racing game where you race all manner of vehicles across a wide range of landscapes. This fourth iteration is set in the United Kingdom, with Edinburgh’s narrow streets, the Lake District’s hills and rainfall and the...

Eco

Release Date: 06/02/2018

Out Now: Mac and PC

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Components: 3D First-Person, Blocks, Day and Night and Open World

Eco extends the resource-collecting and building of Minecraft by introducing environmental implications to your actions. Using resources like trees will erode the soil; mining might pollute the river; and each animal depends on another.

The Past Within

Release Date: 02/11/2022, updated in 2022

Out Now: Android, PC, Switch and iOS

Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On

The Past Within is a co-operative puzzle game where you solve a mystery by communicating with the past. You play the game with another person, either in the same room or elsewhere, by communicating what your different times and perspectives reveal.

Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain (Series)

Release Date: 05/06/2006, updated in 2021

Out Now: DS, Switch and Wii

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On

Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain is a puzzle game designed to test and improve your mental capacity and well-being. You are presented with an assortment of challenges designed to measure how smart your brain is. The focus is on fun rather than...

Kind Words

Release Date: 12/11/2019

Out Now: PC

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On and Text

Kind Words is unusual because of the main interaction. You write letters to real people and receive back encouraging letters in return. Set in a cosy room with soft furnishings and relaxing music, it creates a space in which to find support and...

Monorail Stories

Release Date: 30/09/2022

Out Now: Mac, PC and Switch

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On and Pixels

Monorail Stories is a narrative adventure where two people's lives are entwined by the journeys they take on the same monorail. You make choices for each character that can impact not only people on your commute but those on the other journey. It's...

Koala Boutique

Release Date: 23/09/2021

Out Now: Android and PC

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Components: 2D Overhead and Pixels

Koala Boutique is a strategy game about running a shop on the brink of bankruptcy. Unusually, it's a game designed for two players to play distinct roles. You don't have to play at the same time, but work together to progress as a team. The Adventurer...

Salt and Sacrifice (Series)

Release Date: 10/05/2022

Out Now: PC, PS Vita, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 14+ year-olds

Components: 2D Overhead and Hand-Made

Salt and Sacrifice (and its prequel Salt and Sanctuary) is an fighting adventure game that's intentionally difficult and dark. You play by exploring the side-on world, fighting enemies with swords and other weapons. It's a strange combination of cartoon...

Spooky Chase

Release Date: 23/10/2020, updated in 2021

Out Now: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Components: 2D Side-On and Pixels

Spooky Chase is a running, jumping game where you play a ghost collecting a series of flags. However, each route you take to a flag is then followed by enemies when you go after the next one. You play each level multiple times to collect each flag, but...

Game & Wario

Release Date: 28/06/2013

Out Now: Wii U

Components: 3D Third-Person and Cartoon

Game & Wario is a series of small games designed for families to enjoy. Like NintendoLand it shows off the different sorts of games you can play on the Wii U not possible on other systems. Because of this the quality and...

PixelJunk Racers

Release Date: 13/09/2007, updated in 2010

Out Now: PS3 and PS4

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Components: 2D Overhead

PixelJunk Racers is racing game where the circuit is viewed from above. Like a slot car game (Anki Overdrive or Scalextrics) you race round the in one of the five separate lanes. This unusual approach makes the game about changing lanes and controlling...

EA Sports FC 24

Release Date: 28/09/2023

Out Now: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox X|S

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person

EA Sports FC 24 is a sports game designed to simulate the players, tactics and crescendo moments of top-flight football. Play involves picking players and setting tactics before controlling each of your team in turn on the pitch. Its simulation is...

Funtasia

Release Date: 29/09/2022

Out Now: PC and Switch

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On and Hand-Made

Funtasia is a racing game where you play anthropomorphic animals who have jumped in goofy vehicles to fend off their world succumbing to trash. You play by accelerating or decelerating to try and get through the side-on level, using the physics of the...

Different Strokes

Release Date: 10/11/2022

Out Now: PC

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On and Hand-Made

Different Strokes is a drawing game where you collaborate to make and rate each other's art. You play by exploring the gallery and then adding to the art. The novelty is not only being able to collaborate on art, but seeing what the community does with...

Kind Words 2

Release Date: Coming soon

Coming Soon: Mac and PC

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person, Cartoon, Day and Night and Text

Kind Words 2 is an online communication game that expands upon the original Kind Words game where you wrote and received letters from an online community. Play is simply moving around social spaces and conversing with other players through letters to...

Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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