The giant ball in the sky has wrought its righteous fury upon the UK today, letting us boil and burn under its gaze. All those who do not reduce into nought but puddles of sweat will blister and roast, and not even walls and fans can protect us in these trying times.
Many people play games for escapism. To run away from their reality and take solace in a new world where the harshness of life is limited to maybe a skeleton you can whack with a big, fuck-off axe. If I’ve ever wanted to play games for escapism, it’d be right bleeding now.
With that in mind, here are some of the coldest games you could play right now if your controller hadn’t melted.
Sky–racists might not seem like the best company during a heatwave. People get snippy in high temperatures down on the ground, so when your city is full of hoity-toity xenophobics it’s easy to expect Columbia would somehow be a disaster waiting to happen on a hot today.
Except there’s never a hot day in Columbia. There’s never even a slightly warm or a “bit nippy” day. By the events of BioShock Infinite, it’s flying 15000 feet above sea level (where Booker DeWitt launched from), which, because it gets colder the higher up you go, means it’s a rather chilly -14.7 degrees C (5.55 F) in the city.
That might be too cold for some, but then you have to consider the existence of the Devil’s Kiss vigor, which lets the user create and manipulate fire. That, along with the fact the Vox Populi are currently burning the sky-racists to the ground, means it should be nice and cosy.
FarSky tasks you with surviving in the darkest depths of the ocean, hunting for fish and exploring abandoned nautical research stations.
It’s a tough existence living off of potatoes and having to ration your oxygen usage, but there is something very appealing to being separated from all of human existence and living among the jellyfish and coral.
More importantly, the ocean can get as cold as 0-3 C (32-38 F), assuming you’ve not parked for submarine over an underwater volcano or something. Head to your base, grab a fan, whip your diving suit off, and with luck that deep-sea water will take care of the rest.
It’s cold, there’s snow, and the skydemon has yet to reach the polar tundras of Tamriel’s most northern region. It’s is an ideal place to retreat to. Even the areas that aren’t covered in snow look nice and cold, with frosty winds and bitter stones scattered throughout the land.
It’s difficult to pinpoint exactly how warm Skyrim can get, seeing as it’s unfortunately not a real place. The closest guess we can make is from using Iceland, a country that Skyrim borrows heavily from for its landscape and Nordic culture. Even in the summer, Iceland only reaches highs of approximately 14.5 C. In the winter, it can get as cold as -5.5 C.
It’s cold, but it’s not deathly cold, especially with all the fur pelts those Nords wear. Plus, for those few summer 14.5 C days, there are spells that let you shoot cold stuff out of your hands.
Sod it. Earth (and Norn, thanks Skyrim) are still too hot for me, so let’s look a bit further afield. Space: The Coldest Frontier.
ADR1FT is set in earth’s orbit after a massive accident ripped apart a space station. All life support systems are offline, and so it’s up to you to float through the wreckage and hunt for oxygen tanks to stay alive. On the plus side, it’s also a fabulous way to keep cool.
Because space is a near-vacuum with no atmosphere, it ain’t ‘alf cold out. -270.45 C (-454.81 F) is only 3C above absolute zero, the coldest anything can ever be. All heat is is the movement of energy, and at absolute zero that completely stops.
Of course being stranded in space means you’d probably die from a trillion other perils including asphyxiation, radiation, pressure sickness, and floating debris, but at least heat exhaustion won’t be one of them.
If we don’t limit ourselves to the wreckage of ADR1FT, we could get to a billionth of a degree above absolute zero, thanks to proposals by the International Space Station to produce the Cold Atom Laboratory. Just shove me in it, turn me on, and maybe I won’t be sweating like a pig anymore.
Please send help. It’s so hot. I think I’m dying. Bring me cornettoes and lots of McFlurries. That’s my only hope.