The 10 Absolute Best PC Games Of All Time

pc games

The 10 Absolute Best PC Games Of All Time

PC games have been a popular form of entertainment for decades. With so many PC games available, deciding which ones are worth your time can be overwhelming. To help you find the perfect PC games to add to your collection, we’ve compiled the following list.

What Are PC Games?

PC games are video games that are played on a personal computer. These games are typically purchased and downloaded online or installed from a physical storage medium such as a CD or USB.

Most PC games are designed to be played with a mouse and keyboard, although some can also be played using a gamepad or joystick. Furthermore, all major operating systems, such as Windows, macOS, and Linux, support most types of PC games.

Yes. PC gaming has been available since the development of the first personal computers in the 1970s. Over the years, PC gaming has grown in popularity and has become known as a particularly well-suited platform for first-person shooter games, role-playing games, and strategy games.

Furthermore, personal computers are generally more powerful than most console systems, allowing for more complex and detailed PC games to be developed. Now, let’s get started on our list of the ten absolute best PC games of all time.

#10: Sid Meier’s Civilization II

Sid Meier’s Civilization II is a classic strategy game for PC that allows players to create and manage their own civilization. The game is set in ancient times and is perfect for players who enjoy the challenge of building and expanding their civilization while competing against others.

Since its release in 1996 by MicroProse, Civilization II has received widespread acclaim and has earned a high Metacritic score of 94. In this strategy game, players are pitted against each other or the AI in developing a civilization from an ancient tribe.

You get to lead your cities and villages as you ensure your newly established civilization remains relevant, either by taking over other civilizations or using technological inventions. If you are conquered, you automatically lose, and you stop competing in the game.

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11/30/2023 12:23 am GMT

However, a peace agreement between two players can be used to end a war. To win, you can either take over all available civilizations, develop a spaceship designed to explore the Alpha Centauri star system, or exist up to 2020 AD.

Your score will be calculated upon completion of the game. Civilization II has a total of twenty-one civilizations from which you can choose. It also has mods that make this version customizable.

You can easily change the game in terms of graphics and general mechanics. Additionally, the game features Scenarios that represent historical and fictional events. Civilization II also has an improved AI that can provide strong competition for human opponents. 

#9: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is a must-have explorative, action-packed game for your PC. It is set in the fantasy world of Tamriel and follows the story of the Dragonborn, a hero who is destined to defeat a dragon.

With a Metacritic score of 94, this game has received widespread critical acclaim and is suitable for players who enjoy action-packed gameplay in a vast game world. In the game, you play as the Dragonborn. Your main task is to save the world of Skyrim from a dragon called Alduin.

This world comprises cities, fortresses, caves, and villages with monsters scattered in them. As you explore the world of Skyrim, you can participate in various missions that will improve your character’s skills. You can also customize the race of your character from the available options.

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - PC
  • Skyrim reimagines the open-world fantasy epic, pushing the game play and technology of a virtual world to new heights
  • Play any type of character you can imagine, and do whatever you want; the legendary freedom of choice, storytelling
  • Skyrim's new game engine brings to life a complete virtual world with rolling clouds, rugged mountains, bustling cities, lush fields
  • Choose from hundreds of weapons, spells, and abilities; the new character system allows you to play any way you want
  • Requires internet connection and free steam account to activate
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The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is playable in third-person and first-person views. The game characters have three main attributes: Health, which denotes the maximum damage a character can take; Magicka, which is essential in casting spells; and Stamina, which is vital for performing attacks and sprinting.

These attributes regenerate as you play, and you can drink special portions or even cast spells to fasten the refilling process. The game also has eighteen skills divided into the three available schools: Combat, Stealth, and Magic. To improve a skill, you have to perform a task related to the craft.

#8: Portal 2

Portal 2 is an engaging and highly rated puzzle game for PC, with a Metacritic score of 95. This game challenges players to use their ability to teleport through portals. It also tests your patience as you try to find the exit in challenging puzzles filled with obstacles and hazards. If you enjoy games that push your problem-solving skills to the limit and keep you on the edge of your seat, then this game is for you.

In the gameplay, your objective is to use portals generated by the Aperture Science Handheld Portal Device to navigate through obstacle-filled stages. You can play as either Chell, a robot, or a human silhouette.

Portal 2 - PC
  • Extensive single player: Featuring next generation gameplay and a wildly-engrossing story.
  • Complete two-person co-op: Multiplayer game featuring its own dedicated story, characters, and gameplay.
  • Advanced physics: Allows for the creation of a whole new range of interesting challenges, producing a much larger but not harder game.
  • Massive sequel: The original Portal was named 2007's Game of the Year by over 30 publications worldwide.
  • The single-player portion of Portal 2 introduces a cast of dynamic new characters, a host of fresh puzzle elements
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11/29/2023 10:18 pm GMT

When you enter a portal, your speed is maintained. Additionally, your character can sustain injuries and die if exposed to hazards for too long. This game version has been updated with new hazards like Hard Light, Excursion Funnels, and Thermal Discouragement Beams.

What’s more, the game’s Weighted Storage Cube underwent a recalibration and now includes Redirection Cubes, Edgeless Safety Cubes, and Weighted Companion Cubes. In multiplayer mode, the game supports communication and allows two players to simultaneously play using a split screen or their PCs. 

#7: Persona 5 Royal

Persona 5 Royal brings realism to the gaming world. It offers a wide range of activities and experiences for players. The game allows you to live the life of a high school student, where you can work, have fun, battle, and lead a social life.

These fascinating features contribute to the game’s high Metacritic score of 95, making it a top-rated role-playing game for PC. The game takes place in real-time, with days and nights passing.

However, the game’s weather is randomly generated. You will take the role of Joker, a male student attending school in Tokyo. There are a lot of activities to engage in, such as work, leisure, and battles.

Persona 5 Royal - Xbox & Windows 10 [Digital Code]
  • Don the mask and join the Phantom Thieves of Hearts as they stage grand heists, infiltrate the minds of the corrupt, and make them change their ways!
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Furthermore, you can form social relationships, called Confidants, and may have the opportunity to romance them. To engage in battles, you have to either run into enemies or use stealthy attacks called Ambush. In addition to melees and weapon attacks, you can also summon Personas to assist in your attacks.

Personas are virtual versions of your character and are helpful on special occasions. Persona 5 Royal has a special location called The Velvet Room, which allows you to create or sacrifice Personas. Personas can be made by fusing multiple Personas to create ones with more advanced attributes.

Alternatively, players can choose to sacrifice Personas using methods such as Hanging, Electric Chair, or Solitary Confinement. Other features in the game include the Third Eye, which allows players to solve puzzles, the Security Level, which represents the score generated by a party in a palace when trying to go undetected, and Safe Rooms which enables players to do multiple inputs such as saving progress. 

#6: Baldur’s Gate II: Shadows of Amn

Baldur’s Gate II: Shadows of Amn is a highly praised role-playing game for PC with a Metacritic score of 95. In the game, players can customize their character and then embark on an exciting journey through a world filled with hostile enemies. The game offers a rewarding experience for players who like Dungeons and Dragon-themed environments.

In this role-playing game, you can control up to six characters, with one designated as your primary character. If your primary character is defeated, you have the option to either load a saved game or start a new one.

Are You Up to the Challenge?
Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn
  • Welcome to a world of intrigue, adventure, and fierce combat
  • Create a new character or import your Baldur's Gate or Baldur's Gate: Tales of the Sword Coast character into Baldur's Gate 2 and continue the epic saga
  • New weapons and AD&D proficiencies (including a two-weapon fighting style) create unique combat options for players
  • Windows 98, Windows Me, Windows 95
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However, before you begin playing, you must select and customize your characters, including their appearance and attributes. You can simply click on enemies to attack them, and your character will automatically engage them in combat.

As you progress through the game, you will earn experience points, which can be used to increase your character’s level. Baldur’s Gate II: Shadows of Amn has several new character classes: Barbarian, Monk, and Sorcerer.

These classes are further divided into Kits, each of which offers unique benefits and limitations. In multiplayer mode, up to six players can play together.

The game also includes a World Map, which displays the player’s current location and destination. Additionally, there is a Tool Tip feature that provides information about different items and creatures in the game.

#5: BioShock

BioShock is an action-packed first-person shooter game for PC with a Metacritic score of 96. It offers a unique and unpredictable FPS experience for players. In the game, you can customize your weapons and test your skills as you progress through various levels.

BioShock challenges players to see how far they can advance while offering an exciting gaming experience. In this game, you play as Jack, the founder of Rapture City. You will guide him through various objectives as he battles different enemies using a variety of weapons and plasmids.

The game also allows you to combine weapons and plasmids for more powerful attacks. If an enemy defeats you, your character will respawn at a Vita-Chamber checkpoint. However, you can disable the Vita-Chambers and start the game from the beginning whenever you are defeated. 

BioShock - PC
  • Award-winning first-person shooter game
  • Explore the mysterious underwater city of Rapture
  • Vivid graphics and realistic water effects
  • Exceptional customization options
  • Unique weapons and strategies
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In Bioshock, players can use EVE serum to power up their Plasmids, which are special abilities that can be used for offense and are crucial for completing certain levels. EVE can be refilled using collectibles such as syringes and alcohol, while players can restore their health using food and medical supplies.

The game also features a mini-game called Prime Mania, in which players can hack any computerized system in Rapture. There is also a research camera feature that allows players to take pictures of enemies and gain crucial information about them. Furthermore, by completing the set objectives in the game, players can earn ADAM, which can grant access to new Plasmids. 

#4: The Orange Box

The Orange Box is a highly-rated video game collection that offers an exciting multiplayer experience. It has a score of 96 on Metacritic and is known for its diverse selection of characters. Furthermore, its games are considered classics in the first-person shooter and puzzle genres.

Orange Box has five games, each offering a different gameplay experience. Although you can only play one game at a time, your progress, achievements, and victories will be saved across all five games thanks to a complementary record-keeping system. Most games in the Orange Box also feature a commentary system to guide you through various levels and sections of the game.

Revolutionary Action Games from Valve
The Orange Box – PC
  • Play five revolutionary action games from Valve
  • Box includes Half-Life 2: Episode Two, Portal, Team Fortress 2
  • Also features full versions of the Half-Life 2 and Half-Life 2: Episode One
  • Enjoy trailblazing FPS games, action-adventure puzzle games, and epic multiplayer
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The five games playable in The Orange Box include Half-Life 2, Half-Life 2: Episode One, Half-Life 2: Episode Two, Portal, and Team Fortress 2. Half-Life 2 is a first-person shooter game involving a resistance fighter tasked with liberating the world from Aliens.

Half-Life 2: Episode One is a continuation of Half-Life 2, where Gordon Freeman is joined by an AI-controlled character Alyx Vance in the fight against an alien force attacking humanity. Lastly, Half-Life 2: Episode Two is more of an explorative game. It is set after the final events of Episode One, where the game’s characters traverse the newly added sections in less linear gameplay.

Fortress 2 is a first-person shooter game that allows players to team up and fight against each other in a set of objectives, such as capturing a flag and securing control points. Finally, Portal is a puzzle game requiring the gamer to exit the scene using portals. 

#3: Grand Theft Auto V

Grand Theft Auto V is a highly acclaimed action-adventure game for PC developed by Rockstar. With a Metacritic score of 96, it is considered one of the best games available for PC. In the game, players can explore a wide range of adventures and vast maps while engaging in exciting action.

The game also features multiplayer modes, allowing players to enjoy it with friends and family. In Grand Theft Auto V, you can play as one of three primary characters: Trevor Philips, a drug and firearms dealer; Franklin Clinton, a gangster; and Michael De Santa, a former bank robber.

Each character has eight different skills. The game also features a Wanted Meter and a Health Bar. The Wanted Meter, indicated by stars, shows the level of danger you’re in with the police.

Grand Theft Auto V Pc
  • The biggest, most dynamic and most diverse open world ever created and now packed with layers of new detail
  • Grand Theft Auto V blends storytelling and gameplay in new ways as players repeatedly jump in and out of the lives of the game's three lead characters, playing all sides of the game's interwoven story
  • Grand Theft Auto V also comes with Grand Theft Auto Online, the Dynamic and ever evolving Grand Theft Auto universe for multiple players
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12/01/2023 07:26 am GMT

The more stars you have, the more deadly the police units pursuing you will be. The Health Bar decreases when you are harmed, and you’ll respawn at the nearest hospital if you die. You can also own property, cars, weapons, and a smartphone which you can use for communication and trading stocks.

Additionally, the game is customizable, allowing you to alter your character’s clothing, hair, and tattoos. The game also features heists and other gang-related activities, with most missions requiring you to shoot enemies and drive around San Andreas.

As you complete heist missions, you’ll face challenges from rival gangs and the police. When you’re not on missions, you can access various real-life amenities, such as strip clubs, BASE jumping, and cinemas.

In addition to running and swimming, you can also drive vehicles and fly airplanes in your adventures. Some missions allow you to switch between characters, while others bring assistance from AI-controlled characters. 

#2: Half-Life 2

Half-Life 2 is an action-packed first-person shooter game for PC with great graphics and easy controls. With a Metacritic score of 96, it is a highly rated game. Players assume the role of a rebel fighting to save the earth from an alien invasion.

The game has a strong following among fans of the first-person shooter genre and is an excellent choice for gamers who enjoy challenging puzzles and engaging in combat.

In this game, you will encounter various challenges, including combat, puzzles, and driving. To progress through the game, you must explore the map, collect weapons and other valuable items, and defeat various enemies using tactics and maneuvers.

Half-Life 2: Episode Pack - PC
  • Battle new alien foes.
  • Drive new vehicles through new locations beyond City 17.
  • Discover more about the award-winning story of Half-Life.
  • Over 15 hours of award-winning single player gaming.
  • Battle online with Half-Life 2: Deathmatch – included for no additional charge.
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You can also use traps and hazards to assist you in combat. On some levels, you can join forces with other resistance soldiers, enabling you to work together and coordinate your attacks. However, to succeed in Half-Life 2, you must be resourceful and adaptable and use all the tools at your disposal to overcome the challenges you face.

Half-Life 2 comprises environmental hazards as opposed to the button-oriented puzzling features in the previous installment. These puzzles allow your character, Gordon Freeman, to manipulate objects in the game world in order to solve them.

The new Gravity Gun is a very useful weapon for Gordon. It allows him to bring objects closer and launch them at enemies with great force. The Gravity Gun can also solve various puzzles throughout the game. The game also features a cast of characters, including Alyx Vance, G-Man, Isaac Kleiner, Barney Calhoun, and Judith Mossman. 

#1: Disco Elysium: The Final Cut

Disco Elysium: The Final Cut is a highly acclaimed role-playing game recognized for its rich narrative, complex character development, and branching dialogues. The game offers a single-player mode that allows players to explore the game world and solve mysteries at their own pace.

Furthermore, this game version has received widespread praise for its exceptional quality and earned a Metacritic score of 97. Disco Elysium: The Final Cut is a good choice for players looking for a unique and atmospheric role-playing experience.

In gameplay, you assume the role of an amnesiac detective working on a murder case with your partner, Kim Kitsuragi. The game does not involve combat but rather presents challenges through dialogue trees and skill checks.

As you progress through the game, you earn skill points to improve your character’s abilities. Additionally, there are a total of 24 skills that allow your character to have internal dialogues with himself. These dialogues help you make decisions about several actions in the game. 

Disco Elysium: The Final Cut features four primary abilities, which include Intellect, Psyche, Physique, and Motorics. You can also customize your character’s clothing, which may affect their skills positively or negatively.

The newly added Thought Cabinet is the game’s secondary inventory system. It comprises different slots of thoughts that you progressively unlock as you play through the levels. Furthermore, there are several characters you can encounter in the game, including Alice DeMettrie, Nix Gottlieb, Jules Pidieu, Gary, and the Cryptofascist.

Final Thoughts

It’s clear that the ten PC games on this list have earned their place as some of the best of all time. They have stood the test of time and continue to be enjoyed by millions of players worldwide. So, give these PC games a try, and tell us which one is your favorite.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Are PC games suitable for all ages?

Not all PC games are suitable for all ages. Some PC games may contain mature themes or content unsuitable for younger players. However, most PC games will have an age rating advisory that can guide you.

Are PC games available on other platforms as well?

Yes. Due to their popularity and success, many PC games have been successfully ported and released on other platforms. In addition, some PC games have received updates and remakes on these platforms. This has allowed newer players to experience classic PC games in a modern way.

Can PC games be played on a laptop or iPad?

Yes, some PC games can be played on a laptop or an iPad. However, the performance may not be as smooth as playing the game directly on a gaming PC because they may not have a dedicated graphics card.

How long have PC games been around?

By the late 1970s to early 1980s, games were developed and distributed through hobbyist groups and gaming magazines, such as Creative Computing and later Computer Gaming World.

When was the first game computer made?

In October 1958, Physicist William Higinbotham created what is thought to be the first video game. It was a very simple tennis game, similar to the classic 1970s video game Pong, and it was quite a hit at a Brookhaven National Laboratory open house.

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