Save your game, pack your bags and grab your portable consoles, because summer is here and you deserve a vacation. Let Later Levels and friends be your travel agents as we guide you through some of the hottest destinations in video games that would make for a great holiday. Fasten your seat-belts, put your trays in their upright position and dim the cabin lights as we prepare to take off…
Palawan Lagoon from Indiana Jones and the Infernal Machine
“I think Palawan Lagoon from the fifth level of Indiana Jones and the Infernal Machine would be quite lovely to visit, what with the beaches and everything. Since it’s an Indy game, it’s no touristy place – but hey, there are a lot of adventures to be had there… so why not? You also got a semi-sunken ship to explore. I would love to visit this place just to see my childhood memories from the game come to life!”
Dunwall from Dishonored
“As a warm-weather-dodger I will be taking my holidays somewhere cool. While a ramble around the mountain ranges of Skyrim sounds nice, once I’ve done the 7,000 steps there’s not much to see. I prefer a city break so plague be damned, I’ll be going to Dunwall for the beautiful architecture, museums, art galleries, the technological marvels, the sea breeze, and all the stolen valuables I can carry. A moment or two of conversation with Piero Joplin, an afternoon taking in the artworks of Anton Sokolov, time to take in the atmosphere – although not too much – and maybe book a trip to Karnaca (Dishonored 2) for winter.”
Picked by Joel from GeekOut South-West
Panau from Just Cause 2
“When I think of my dream gaming holiday destination, a few places come to mind: the Mushroom Kingdom; Pokémon’s Kanto region; the beach where the Dead or Alive volleyball games take place (don’t judge me).
“In the end, though, I realised that what I need is a little excitement. So I’m jetting off to Panau, the island setting of Just Cause 2! It’s perfect: there are beaches, stores, airports… oh, and everything is constantly exploding. All the time. (Also, there’s a dictator whose accent might be really racist, but nvm.) I guess the caveat to my visit is that I sort of need to be the one blowing stuff up, not just a tourist caught in the crossfire, because that would almost definitely involve death and not be fun. I wanna be the one tying one plane to another and parachuting between them, not the one in a regular boring mode of transportation trying to avoid being crushed by men riding literal nukes.”
Picked by Chris from OverThinker Y
Hyrule from The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker
“The world of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker would be a top vacation spot, I think. Sure, there are loads of annoying critters that’ll try to kill you from time to time, but for the rest of your stay it’d be nothing but blue sea, blue skies and gorgeous, tranquil islands for you to sail between. Just playing Wind Waker is something of a holiday from the grimness and drudgery of real life, so to actually go there on vacation – like, for reals – would be a genuinely magical experience. In your face, Disneyland!!”
Hidden Retreat from Tekken 6
“Ah, the lovely Hidden Retreat is home to some of the most adorable animals on earth: sheep. They stand around as the characters of Tekken 6 sort out their business; with gorgeous green grass and a fantastic alpine backdrop, this location is an ideal place to get some much needed rest and relaxation.
“But when you shave away the animals, there’s something peculiar about this place. I mean, it’s so secluded and yet there’s constant yodelling! Don’t touch the sheep either, they’ll bounce away. Huh, the more I think about it, the worse this vacation gets…”
The River from Pokémon Snap
“Pokémon Snap is a game for the Nintendo 64 that allowed the player to take pictures of Pokémon for Professor Oak. You had to have a keen eye in order to see the Pokémon hiding throughout each level. The River level introduces you to awesome favorites like Bulbasaur and Psyduck, along with the beautiful Vileplum. River is a great place to visit, camp, hike, kayak and take pictures. You feel at one with nature and I imagine the air smells pretty darn clean as well! Just look out for the Cloyster lurking about!
“Gaming friends, my pick Is a tropical retreat from a game that had plenty of scenic levels to choose from! Cast your lines out on this riverboat retreat on river, from Pokémon Snap! Enjoy the cuteness of baby Poliwags at the beginning of the river! Float further down stream and have a laugh with the wacky antics of Slowpoke, or marvel in the beauty of a Vileplum by the side of the riverbank! This level has it all if you’re looking for – fun, tranquillity, and reflection. Who says vacations have to be full with activities anyway?”
Rapture from BioShock
“I’ve always understood the draw of the summer but personally I’ve never dealt well in the heat: I burn almost instantly, and plant-life assaults my nose with its inconsiderate pollen production. So for my ideal summer video game getaway I’ve decided to escape the heat, sunshine, and pollen by travelling via express bathysphere to that marvel of industrial enterprise, the underwater city of Rapture. There I’ll while away those hazy summer hours watching humpback whales through the inch-thick glass of my luxury apartment. In the evening I might head over to Fort Frolic to catch an avant-garde production in Fleet Hall before drinks somewhere in Poseidon Plaza and a few hands of blackjack over at Pharaoh’s Fortune Casino. Sure it’s a hedonistic place, but with a buck in your pocket the world is your oyster in a place like Rapture… I might even get a little spliced… because who wouldn’t want telekinetic powers… right?…”
The island from The Witness
“The island where The Witness is set is one of the most beautiful settings within a video game and would be an amazing place to visit in real life. You wouldn’t get one vacation but several: when you got tired of sunbathing on the gorgeous beach, you could take a boat trip, visit the sand dunes, explore the jungle or climb the mountain to reach the temple at the top. As if that wasn’t enough to do, there are plenty of puzzles to complete when you need something to tax the brain; and no other holiday-goers around would mean plenty of rest and relaxation. Pure bliss!”
Video game lover, Later Levels blogger and SpecialEffect volunteer. Big fan of wannabe pirates and fine leather jackets.