by Bill Boulden
'Crashlands' is a fun little action RPG with good writing and an interesting world, falling (mechanically) somewhere between Terraria and Don't Starve. In puzzle game terms, I can also deeply recommend 'The Witness', which actually plays *better* with periodic breaks to cool off the brain. And if you're into TD, I believe 'Gemcraft: Chasing Shadows' is on Mac. All three are easily acquired on Steam.
i was also going to recommend a game from the xcom series. (xcom 2 is pretty fresh, being released this year.). its a take turn tactical strategy game, leaving you with as much time to think between any actions taken as you'd like. I've been all over the earlier versions released on the 360 lately, and have been really impressed with it. congrats on 3k!
I was going to suggest FTL but I see that many others have beat me to it.
Another space themed game that rewards slow methodical play, and is mostly pause friendly is Duskers available on Steam. It's pretty different from everything else out there as you play entirely via a command console, but it's been praised as being more successful at capturing the feel of the Aliens than many games that have been built for that specific IP.
Playing Duskers while listening to Music to Die Alone in Space to also seems superbly fitting.
I'm gonna echo the Faster than Light (FTL) recommendation, fantastic game. has a pause function you can use at any point during play, space theme of course, manage your own starship and crew, quick play throughs...just be prepared for randomness. The "RNG" is part of the charm here!
Darkest Dungeon is the game I go back to when I'm tired of Stonehearth or Banner Saga.
Mount & Blade: Warband!
If you like turn-based games, something like Xcom or Shadowrun could work.
Superhot is an FPS, but with a gimmick that if you stand still, time stops, which seems perfect for your situation.
Faster Than Light. Suits the space theme, nothing really lost by not having any audio, and pausing is actually a key mechanic in the game for organising your actions!
You might like "Out There" (by Mi-Clos Studios)! It fits your criteria - and fits thematically with your work as well!
Sid Meier's Civilization series and Civilization: Beyond Earth (would be very fitting with it's space theme). Or a Sim City game (I haven't played the newest one).
Uplink is a great game for this type of situation and I just checked, they have a Mac version
I second the Portal recommendation. I will also throw in Firewatch and any of the Telltale Games episodic stories, like Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, Tales from the Borderlands, etc. And iIf you want some really casual games, I suggest HuniePop (pervy match 3 that gets pretty challenging), Slime Rancher and Pinball Arcade.
Maybe a 4x game? Those are usually either turn based or pause-able. Something like Civilization, Master of Orion, Sword of the Stars, Stellaris, etc.
Ooh, have you heard of Underta--
Ah. Never mind, then. XD
The Portal series is a good option when played with subtitles, and I'm quite fond of The Stanley Parable. There are even instances when you get more dialogue after idling for a bit, and there's a tiny easter egg or two in the subtitles you wouldn't get with just audio. (The one thing I'd say is if you're gonna play The Stanley Parable, don't spoil it for yourself first.)
My favorite thing about all of these games, though, is watching people's reactions to them. Have you ever considered doing a video game stream?
Factorio is what I leave running in a corner of my screen at almost all times at work. It's replaced SimCity and there's always something to do in it.
Baldur's Gate 1&2 and Icewind Dale (enhanced editions) are all classic RPGs that are easily paused.
King's Bounty basically uses the HoMM5 combat system but without the town management. (Sadly HoMM isn't available on Mac)
It's going to be interesting to see what other suggestions you get, but mine is...
'Stealth Bastard Deluxe'.
It's tough but fair. Make a mistake and you are usually dead within a fraction of a second, BUT you almost always blame yourself for dying. Controls are spot on. Great game.
Check out Portal 2! It runs on Apple software and most of the early puzzles take no time at all. It's great to play in 10 minute chunks.