It’s easy to check how long it takes to watch a movie or a TV show, so why shouldn’t it be the same for video games? No one wants to spend $US70 ($97) on a game that’s too short, or accidentally start a 200-hour JRPG when time is limited and precious. The next time you’re considering whether you should pick up a game or not, you might want to check the length on HowLongToBeat.
When you visit the site, you can use the search bar to find your game — even before you finish typing, HowLongToBeat will reveal how long it’ll take to finish the game. Of course, unlike movies, a video game’s length isn’t fixed. Some people can take an hour to beat an incredibly difficult game, while others can spend 100 hours on the same title. So HowLongToBeat polls its users and shows you an average completion time figure.
In it, you can quickly see how much time it takes to finish just the main game (if you want to ignore all side quests), how long it’ll take to finish the game with the extra objectives, and how long the game can entertain completionists.
Extra features for Xbox Game Pass
HowLongToBeat has been around for years, but it only recently partnered with Microsoft to add a couple of useful features for Game Pass. If you use Xbox Game Pass on a PC, game listings on the Xbox app will show you completion time stats from HowLongToBeat. Just look up any game on the Xbox app on your PC and you’ll see the HowLongToBeat integration below its description. We hope this feature also makes its way to Xbox consoles, but at the moment it’s restricted to PCs.
If you’re someone who games on both Xbox and PC, you can visit HowLongToBeat’s dedicated Xbox page to find your next game. The page organizes these titles well, and makes it easy to look up different types of games. It has a neat collection of highly acclaimed games, highlights EA Play games separately, and even has genre filters to help you choose.
In our experience, the time taken to finish video games hovers between HowLongToBeat’s estimates for main story and main story plus side quests. That means you can add a few hours to the lowest estimate to find a good average playing time. Of course, this goes out of the window if you’re a completionist, but it’s a good rule of thumb for most players.
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