Beat Zoom boredom with these great PC games to play during online meetings

Bored businesswoman in an online meeting
(Image credit: Golubovy / Shutterstock)

Remote working has become increasingly widespread over the past 18 months due to the global pandemic. If you’re lucky enough, you don’t even need to switch on your camera for some of those online meetings, and that means you can squeeze in a bit of gaming on the side.

This guide will help you to indulge in your favorite hobby without fear of getting fired. All these games require little concentration, and will allow you to invest just the right amount of attention on your boss, while focusing the rest on what really matters: your own happiness. In effect you'll be getting paid while playing, a dream normally reserved for influencers.

The following five games have been tested in work and family situations, and can be played without taking a big toll on your mental focus. In order to select them, we’ve isolated the main features that can take away your focus, reduce you to a bumbling idiot and destroy your career: hypercomplex systems, rhythm mechanics, and, above all, big chunks of text and narrative sections.

Before starting, it’s important to note that every game needs a little setup before you can play them along with your meetings in Zoom, Skype or similar. Overall, these three tips will help you become a stealthy player and a seemingly productive worker:

  1. Play any tutorial beforehand, as learning new skills demands more attention
  2. If you’re playing on Steam (or similar), set your status to 'Offline' or 'Invisible'
  3. Use earphones and set the game’s general volume to around 5-10%. Or just mute the game

For your convenience, all these games have been rated for the following criteria: concentration needed, amount of text, pauseability, risk of cursing and preliminary setup.


Two Point Hospital

(Image credit: Sega)

Two Point Hospital

Two Point Hospital is the ultimate hospital simulator. Unless you’re looking for realism. But you’re looking for happiness, and just watching a patient being treated for Premature Mummification or Grey Anatomy can make your day.

This management sim is not as complex as others, but it still offers an interesting challenge (especially if you’re a completionist).

In addition, it features tons of extra content (free and paid), tools for personalizing furniture and decorations, and even the ability to rename any character you want. That means you can cure your simulated boss of Logic Problem while listening to your real boss's illogical problems! MAYBE That means you can cure a patient of their complaint while listening to your work colleagues complaining.

Concentration needed: Very Low

Amount of text: Low

Pauseability: You control time

Risk of cursing: Very Low

Preliminary setup: Low 

Screenshot of SUPERHOT

(Image credit: SUPERHOT Team)


The main catch of SUPERHOT is that time moves very slowly if you stand still – so just like in a project management meeting. This makes for just the right amount of tension when you suddenly need to explain why the yearly balance sheet doesn't add up while you’re jumping over a car, dodging bullets and throwing a katana at an enemy.

We recommend completing the campaign before engaging in any business meetings. That means you can leave individual levels and challenges for your online meetings, where you don't need to concentrate too much.

Strangely enough, SUPERHOT doesn’t feature pausing. If you press Esc, you return directly to the main menu. Fortunately, levels are short and restarting is automatic, but if you get distracted by your coworkers’ bad jokes, you will die.

Concentration needed: Very Low

Amount of text: Very Low (outside the campaign)

Pauseability: None!

Risk of cursing: Medium

Preliminary setup: Medium 

Bad North screenshot

(Image credit: Plausible Concept)

Bad North

Probably the toughest game on this list, Bad North is an addictive roguelike that sees you defending isles from viking invaders. However, its simple controls and reduced number of troops make it the perfect RTS for a working environment.

Also, every time you select a unit, time slows down, SUPERHOT style, which can give you a breather if the boss asks you why your latest presentation has only 256 pages mid-battle.

If this were a normal review, we wouldn’t recommend using the Allow Level Restarts option, as the high stakes add to the experience. But in this case, those high stakes could lead to the type of frustration that can physically affect your real-life working environment – and with your working environment being your own home, you have to pay for damages.

Concentration needed: Medium 

Amount of text: Very Low

Pauseability: Very High

Risk of cursing: High

Preliminary setup: Low

Opus Magnum

(Image credit: Zachtronics)

Opus Magnum

Opus Magnum is a game about building beautiful machines that perform alchemical transmutations, and its puzzles have just the right degree of difficulty to keep you both entertained and alert. In addition, each transmutation engine gets a score based on three factors: size, speed and cost. So you can engage in a healthy offline competition with other players, increasing the game’s replayability.

The story can be completely ignored or saved for breaks (it really fits the game). However, we recommend playing at least the prologue beforehand, as it takes some time to get familiar with the basic components.

It also features a stupidly addictive bonus game, and a gif recorder for your creations. Just remember to change the name of the Gif file before sharing, as it includes date and time info by default.

Concentration needed: Low

Amount of text: Very Low (not counting the story)

Pauseability: No need

Risk of cursing: Very Low

Preliminary setup: Medium 

Screenshot of

(Image credit: Kongregate, Inc.) is a simplified 2D battle royale featuring 5-to-10-minute matches. It’s played on a browser, making it the fastest game to boot in this list. After playing enough times, you can just press ‘S’ on your keyboard, then ‘Enter’ and there you are, ready to fight. Cookie magic!

This is also the only multiplayer game on this list, which means that you can’t pause… but you can hide for periods if you need to simulate interest and proactivity.

The gameplay is really straightforward: look for weapons, ammo and items; avoid the growing red zone; and be the last player standing. Its graphics may be simple, but don't be fooled by them. offers frantic battles, varied gameplay and dozens of ways to die; just remember to mute yourself when you inevitably step on a mine.

It also receives regular updates, has tons of cosmetics and features several game modes, so you could be playing this one until you retire.

Concentration needed: Very Low

Amount of text: Minimal

Pauseability: Hide in a bush! 

Risk of cursing: Very High

Preliminary setup: Insignificant 

  • Welcome to TechRadar’s PC Gaming Week 2021, our celebration of the greatest gaming platform on Earth. Despite the global pandemic and ongoing GPU shortages, PC gaming has never been more vibrant and exciting, and throughout the week we’ll be reflecting this with a selection of in-depth articles, interviews and essential buying guides.