9. GTA V
Rockstar's main reason for trotting this game out for every single generation instead of actually making a new one may be primarily money-focused, but that would only keep happening so long as folks kept buying it. And, like clockwork, they always do, and for good reason.
GTA V is still one of the most intricately detailed worlds in gaming history, a title Rockstar has spent the decade since its release keeping up on with every re-release. A bit more polish, a bit more to do, a bit more to explore. Never too much to the point of removing what made the original so great, but making sure that a first-time player in 2023 is as impressed as a new player back in 2013.
As you can imagine, this makes the game incredibly hard to put down. Simply driving around is so atmospheric and intuitive that you fall into this trance, with the radio or your favorite podcast playing in the background as you cruise through the winding mountain paths outside of Los Santos.
And when you do follow the story, the heist missions are some of the most fun you'll ever have in a sandbox game. There's an activity for everyone in the streets of Los Santos, and it's VERY easy for the time to just kinda melt away.