Best PC Games

If you’re looking for a good PC game to play, you’ve come to the right place. There are a lot of video games in this round up that’ll entertain you, and they’re neatly organized by genre. Steam users (and if you’re a PC gamer, how aren’t you?) should visit PCMag’s Steam Curator page and Steam Discussion Group, too. Our reviews live there, as well as several themed lists featuring highly regarded titles.

Please recognize, however, that this is not a historical examination of the most groundbreaking PC games. Uh-uh. Sure, Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain redefines stealth-based action and the Forza Horizon series is the definitive open-world racing franchise, but they didn’t make it into this guide based purely on those metrics. Simply put, this an ever-expanding collection of entertaining titles you should buy if you own a gaming desktop or gaming laptop.

To clarify, games don’t need to have been released within the calendar year to qualify for this roundup. Any game that’s still available and still considered excellent when ranked against the best of today is eligible. We think that’s the most useful approach to helping you decide which video games deserve space on your PC’s hard drive, and which aren’t worth consideration even when their prices are cut by 85 percent during a Steam sale.

In our newest update, we’ve added two that we’ve reviewed since our last update: Heavy Rain and and Vanquish.

How We Pick ‘Em

Compiling this guide was no small undertaking. PCMag’s in-house and freelance editors have played a ridiculous number of PC games over the years, so creating inclusion criteria was essential. Here’s what we came up with. To be included, a game must have been reviewed by PCMag, still be available for purchase, and received a rating of 3.5 stars or greater.

The first requirement is to ensure that we can give you more insight into a game. Yes, this guide goes into some depth on each game entry, but the ability to link to a full review benefits those looking for a deeper cut. The second point we’ve already covered. The third point required a bit of pondering. We didn’t want to set the star rating so low that nearly all PC games qualified for the guide, yet we didn’t want to set the star rating so high that we exclude quality B-tier games, such as Dead Island and Split/Second. For now, 3.5 stars is the happy medium, but, as we review more games, we may have to be choosier, to keep the list at a manageable size.

Explore Our Picks

There are currently more than 150 games in this PC gaming guide, so making navigation as simple as possible was an extremely high priority for our creative commandos. The games are grouped alphabetically by genre, and the titles in each category are listed in alphabetical order. Simply select a genre, say fighting games, and the page jumps to that section. Easy!

Sadly, two games have been removed from this roundup due to them being delisted from the Steam and other platforms: Pro Evolution Soccer 2017 and The Walking Dead. It’s a game preservation issue that developers need to address to ensure that titles stick around for future purchase.

In addition, you should make sure to secure your PC while gaming. We suggest checking out our roundup of the best VPNs for gaming, a roundup of PCMag-tested virtual private networks. Not only will a VPN prevent people with ill intent from snooping your network, but it may enable you to, say, spoof your IP address so that you access games in other countries. Explore our reviews to learn about the VPN services that add the least latency to your gaming sessions.

Join the Conversation

If you disagree with our picks, or feel that we should review a game that somehow slipped through the cracks, sound off in the comments section below—we welcome your input! Just keep it civil.

Oh, and if you’re a console gamer who thinks that we’re biased toward PC gaming because we’re PCMag—you’re right! Still, our staff has assembled their top picks for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Wii U, 3DS, and Switch. Those roundups aren’t quite as robust as this one, as the PC has a much deeper library and, well, this is PC Magazine.

We now present the best PC games. Enjoy!

Tic Toc Games’ Adventures of Pip is a side-scrolling action-platformer that’s based on an interesting premise: evolving and devolving a pixel-based hero between his 1-bit and 16-bit forms to fight through level after level of goons and bosses. The unique premise, rich environments, and fun gameplay combine to form a game with a lot of heart and charm, despite the limited scope of its weapons and power-ups

If you’re looking for a good PC game to play, you’ve come to the right place. There are a lot of video games in this round up that’ll entertain you, and they’re neatly organized by genre. Steam users (and if you’re a PC gamer, how aren’t you?) should visit PCMag’s Steam Curator page and Steam Discussion Group, too. Our reviews live there, as well as several themed lists featuring highly regarded titles.

Please recognize, however, that this is not a historical examination of the most groundbreaking PC games. Uh-uh. Sure, Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain redefines stealth-based action and the Forza Horizon series is the definitive open-world racing franchise, but they didn’t make it into this guide based purely on those metrics. Simply put, this an ever-expanding collection of entertaining titles you should buy if you own a gaming desktop or gaming laptop.

To clarify, games don’t need to have been released within the calendar year to qualify for this roundup. Any game that’s still available and still considered excellent when ranked against the best of today is eligible. We think that’s the most useful approach to helping you decide which video games deserve space on your PC’s hard drive, and which aren’t worth consideration even when their prices are cut by 85 percent during a Steam sale.

In our newest update, we’ve added two that we’ve reviewed since our last update: Heavy Rain and and Vanquish.


Adventures of Pip Steam PC

Adventures of Pip

$14.99
$14.99 at Humble Bundle Tic Toc Games’ Adventures of Pip is a side-scrolling action-platformer that’s based on an interesting premise: evolving and devolving a pixel-based hero between his 1-bit and 16-bit forms to fight through level after level of goons and bosses. The unique premise, rich environments, and fun gameplay combine to form a game with a lot of heart and charm, despite the limited scope of its weapons and power-ups.


axiom verge

Axiom Verge

$19.99
$19.99 at Humble Bundle Developer Tom Happ, who is known for his work on EA Sports’ Tiger Woods PGA Tour and NFL Street franchises, has gone indie and crafted a delightful tribute to the exploratory action genre (aka Metroidvania). This 2D platformer combines the best aspects of classic side-scrollers like Castlevania: Symphony of the Night and Metroid to deliver a refined experience for newcomers of the genre and seasoned vets alike. Axiom Verge is a fun, engaging title, but plodding story elements and seemingly pointless weapons mar the experience a bit.


batman arkham city

Batman: Arkham City

$10.75
 “If you liked X, you’ll love Y!” might be the cheapest of critical plaudits, but sometimes nothing else will do. So here goes: If you liked Batman: Arkham Asylum, you’ll love Batman: Arkham City. Developer Rocksteady Studios borrows everything from Asylum that worked (thrilling fighting, excellent voice acting), though it delivers far less innovation. This makes Arkham City derivative, but the game’s packed with enough goon-busting fun that it still stands as one of the PC’s best action games.


Bayonetta

Bayonetta

$19.99
$19.99 at Humble Bundle The original Bayonetta is one of the best action games ever made, and it easily stands alongside such genre classics as God Hand, Devil May Cry 3, and Ninja Gaiden Black. It features explosive action, and it tests your combo prowess against every divine creature in the good book. Despite Bayonetta’s poor PlayStation 3 performance, this PC port is excellent. It delivers the action at a rock-solid frame rate and a range of uncommon resolutions, which makes this version the definitive angel-slaying.

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