Inside How Long to Beat: A Comprehensive Guide to Understanding Video Game Completion Times

As a passionate gamer, one of the most common questions you may come across when starting to play a new game is “How long does it take to beat?” The answer varies from game to game, depending on the title’s length, mechanics, and difficulty level. Understanding the completion time for a video game can help you plan your gaming sessions, schedule your commitments, and avoid burnout from playing a game excessively. This guide will explore the concept of how long to beat and provide you with a comprehensive understanding of video game completion times.

What Is How Long to Beat?

HowLongToBeat is a popular online database that tracks video game completion times across various genres, platforms, and difficulty levels. This service helps gamers estimate how long it will take them to complete a game, including main story missions, side quests, and extra content. HowLongToBeat relies on user-generated data, which means that anyone can contribute to the database by logging their playtime and progression through games.

Why Are Completion Times Important?

Completion times are crucial for several reasons. They help gamers:

1. Plan their gaming sessions: Knowing how long it takes to complete a game can help you factor in how much time you need to dedicate to the game. If you’re on a tight schedule, you can prioritize the most important missions or complete the game in small chunks over time.

2. Avoid burnout: Playing a game excessively can lead to burnout, which negatively impacts your gaming experience. With an estimated completion time, you can pace yourself and take breaks to avoid fatigue.

3. Determine the game’s worth: If you’re looking to get the most out of your money, knowing the completion time can help you determine if a game is worth your investment. For example, if a game is too short, it may not be worth the full retail price.

Factors That Affect Completion Times

The completion time for a video game depends on several factors, including:

1. Game Length: Longer games like The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt can take anywhere from 70 to 200+ hours to complete, while shorter games like Portal 2 may only take around 6-7 hours.

2. Difficulty: Games with higher difficulty levels may take longer to complete as players struggle with challenges.

3. Exploration: Games with open-world environments, such as GTA V or The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, encourage exploration and can significantly increase completion time.

4. Side Quests And Extra Content: Many games offer side quests and extra content that can extend playtime significantly.


In summary, understanding how long it takes to beat a video game is essential for planning your gaming sessions, avoiding burnout, and determining a game’s worth. Websites like HowLongToBeat offer valuable information that can help you make informed decisions about the games you play. Keep in mind that completion times vary depending on several factors, and you should consider them when planning your gaming time. We hope that this guide has provided you with a comprehensive understanding of how long to beat video games. Happy gaming!