December 5, 2023

In terms of flexibility in gaming, no other platform can match the PC. The hardware comes with a lot of advantages for those who can overcome the often-daunting price of setting up a computer. As a bonus, while consoles require a subscription fee for online gaming, the majority of PC games can be played online without any additional cost. Regardless, many people find the most enjoyment in offline PC games.



Whether searching for triple-A open-world behemoths or indie darlings that use pixel art, PC players are spoiled for choice. New games are released on services such as Steam on a daily basis, and while they might not all be classics, there is never a shortage of great titles. What are the best offline games for PC?


Baldur’s Gate 3

A Tiefling with their arms crossed in Baldur's Gate 3

Larian Studios’ Baldur’s Gate 3 launched in Steam early access in 2020, and the developer used this time wisely. Although the franchise has remained somewhat active thanks to enhanced editions and spin-offs like Dark Alliance, Baldur’s Gate‘s last mainline entry came out in 2000, with its expansion debuting a year later. BioWare’s original two games are still regarded as some of the greatest RPGs of all time, and they set a bar that seemed almost impossible for a sequel to surpass. Baldur’s Gate 3 not only leaps over this bar but also confidently carves a new path that sets it apart from everything that came before it, at least in the D&D franchise.

RELATED: Baldur’s Gate 3: The Best Settings For The Steam Deck

Deep customization, a fully-realized world, and flexible storytelling are just a few of the game’s strengths, and they are really just the tip of the iceberg. Utilizing a turn-based combat system reminiscent of Larian’s Divinity: Original Sin 2, Baldur’s Gate 3 focuses on strategic and calculated play that rewards forward-thinking and big-picture tactics, all the while incorporating an element of luck as a reflection of its tabletop roots. While the title supports co-op multiplayer and shines in the mode, the campaign can be played offline as a traditional single-player RPG.

Divinity: Original Sin 2 is also fantastic.

Baldur’s Gate 3

Released
August 3, 2023

Developer(s)
Larian Studios

Genre(s)
RPG

How Long To Beat
30 Hours

Resident Evil 4 Remake

Resident Evil 4 Trophies List

2023’s opening quarter has produced two remakes of all-time great survival horror games. While neither release makes their predecessor obsolete, they are high-quality modern renditions that present enough new ideas to offer more than just a fresh coat of paint. Capcom knows a thing or two about remakes, and while 2019’s Resident Evil 2 is still arguably the standard-bearer, 2023’s Resident Evil 4 comes very close to claiming that crown.

2005’s Resident Evil 4 reshaped the third-person shooter genre, casting a shadow that continues to linger to this day. The remake could never hope to be as groundbreaking as Capcom’s GameCube classic; consequently, the game opts to provide a more consistent experience. Players who never played the original will find a lot to enjoy in the new version, while veterans who have repeatedly accompanied Leon on his European adventure will find a journey that holds a few surprises.

Resident Evil 4 uses Denuvo. While the game can be played offline, users will need to occasionally access the internet as the software will need to perform an anti-tampering check.

Resident Evil 4 Remake

Released
March 24, 2023

Developer(s)
Capcom

Genre(s)
Survival Horror

How Long To Beat
16 Hours

Hogwarts Legacy

Confringo

2023 has already produced a couple of major releases, and Hogwarts Legacy stands as the year’s biggest title so far. While releases like The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom will have something to say about it, this claim could hold true once December rolls around. Harry Potter is a massive franchise that has produced a couple of worthwhile games, along with many underwhelming ones. Rather than adapt the narrative of the books, Hogwarts Legacy takes place roughly a century earlier, a decision that permits the game to focus on the larger universe instead of a well-established storyline.

RELATED: Hogwarts Legacy: Easter Eggs Only Die-Hard Fans Noticed

Players transfer to the eponymous school so they can start their lives as a witch or wizard. After creating a character, they get to pick a house, each one coming with unique common rooms and companions. Hogwarts Legacy has a main quest, but the game encourages players to immersive themselves within its world. They can go to classes, explore Hogwarts’ grounds and other famous Harry Potter locations, catch magical creatures, and fine-tune their spell-casting skills.

Hogwarts Legacy uses Denuvo.

Dead Space Remake

dead space remake plasma cutter

A remake of 2008’s sci-fi horror masterpiece, 2023’s Dead Space is just as good as the original version. Like all those years ago, players find themselves in Isaac Clarke’s heavy shoes as he explores the seemingly abandoned USG Ishimura, a mining ship that has seized all communication. Before long, Isaac is immersed in a horrifying battle for survival as he tries to withstand an alien threat known as the Necromorphs.

Dead Space is pure horror. As Isaac explores the Ishimura, every step could lead to a life-or-death situation, and the former is far from guaranteed. The remake’s visuals are fantastic, and the updated version also changes a few things about the ship’s layout and Isaac’s presentation. While not everything is an improvement, most alterations are positive.

Dead Space (2023)

Released
January 27, 2023

Developer(s)
EA Motive

Genre(s)
Survival Horror

How Long To Beat
12 Hours

Uncharted: Legacy Of Thieves Collection

30 FPS Gameplay In Uncharted: Legacy Of Thieves Collection

Finally, Naughty Dog is on PC, and this collection delivers two games for the price of one. Legacy of Thieves contains Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End and a spin-off called The Lost Legacy. On their own, these are both fantastic action-adventure titles that have great stories, endearing characters, and above-average gameplay; together, they provide quality and quantity.

A Thief’s End brings Nathan Drake’s journey to an end in arguably his strongest outing yet, one that blends action, shooting galleries, platforming, and puzzles to create a robust and varied campaign. Although considerably shorter, The Lost Legacy should not be skipped since it has arguably the best gameplay in the series along with two awesome protagonists in Chloe and Nadine.

Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection

Released
January 28, 2022

Developer(s)
Naughty Dog, Iron Galaxy

Genre(s)
Adventure, Third-Person Shooter

How Long To Beat
20 Hours

Return To Monkey Island

return-to-monkey-island-how-to-decrypt-the-map-double-cross

A new Monkey Island game is always a good reason to be excited, and the 2022 release is extra special since it marks the return of Ron Gilbert to the series. Set right after the events of the second entry, Return to Monkey Island tweaks the point-and-click formula to create a package that stays true to the franchise’s legacy while also adapting to modern expectations.

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As a plot-driven puzzle game, Return to Monkey Island challenges players to explore environments and speak to NPCs to advance the story. The latter is also great, expertly balancing comedy, whimsy, and a sense of adventure.

Return to Monkey Island

Released
September 19, 2022

Developer(s)
Terrible Toybox

Genre(s)
Adventure

How Long To Beat
10 Hours

Immortality

The clapperboard in Immortality

This story-driven indie game is an interactive drama that tasks players with solving the mysterious disappearance of an actress named Marissa Marcel. The truth can be deciphered by investigating three unreleased movies starring Marissa, and the story holds quite a few shocking twists and turns.

Immortality lives and dies on the strength of its narrative, and while things can get confusing at points, everything comes together well by the end. Even though the gameplay might be different from most other entries in the genre, Immortality is ultimately a puzzle game.

Immortality

Released
August 30, 2022

Developer(s)
Sam Barlow

Genre(s)
Horror

How Long To Beat
7 Hours

Prey

A typhon stalks a corridor in Prey

Arkane’s games are all generally great recommendations for single-player experiences. Dishonored is the developer’s most famous license, and all the entries in that series are, at the bare minimum, very good. Deathloop can also be played offline, although it features a mechanic that benefits from an online connection. Lastly, there is Prey, Arkane’s brief trip into survival horror territory. Set on a desolate space station, the campaign drops players in the deep end and largely leaves them to their own devices.

Prey‘s gameplay is fairly typical for Arkane, but the 2017 game has arguably the developer’s greatest setting. Talos I is an immaculately designed Metroidvania-esque map, one which demonstrates that open-worlds do not need to exceed 50 hours to be worthwhile. Blending RPG, stealth, and shooter elements, Prey is a complete and satisfying package that has not aged a day since its debut.

Prey

Released
May 5, 2017

Developer(s)
Arkane Studios

Genre(s)
FPS

How Long To Beat
16 Hours

Planescape: Torment

Planescape: Torment

A bona fide classic, Planescape: Torment holds up as one of gaming’s best uses of Dungeons & Dragons. Unlike the more action-oriented Baldur’s Gate and its sequel(s), which are all naturally fantastic, Planescape: Torment is driven almost entirely by its writing and world-building, two things that are fairly timeless. The combat system was never amazing, and time has done little to change that, but it largely avoids diminishing the RPG’s strengths.

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PST brings to life a complex, dark, and engrossing universe that encourages players to fully immerse themselves as the Nameless One, the campaign’s protagonist. In 2017, an Enhanced Edition was released that made the game easier to run on modern systems, and the remaster includes a few quality-of-life improvements as well.

Dave The Diver

Dave The Diver employees

After a stint in early access, Dave the Diver made its full debut in June 2023, and it is safe to say the game has been a resounding success. Mintrocket really went for broke with this project, crafting an experience that appears to actively despise repetition despite sticking to a fairly fixed loop. Dave not only runs a sushi shop but also personally catches the fish he serves, meaning he spends his days exploring a fantastical ocean and his nights managing a restaurant. That is a lot of work for anyone, and the amazing thing is that Dave the Diver does not neglect either area.

The deep-sea expeditions are an absolute joy thanks to an ever-changing environment and a one-weapon-per-run loadout system. The latter means players constantly have to weigh the pros and cons of their available arsenal, and once a decision is made, they are stuck with it. Dives also come with a well-thought-out risk/reward system since overambition can result in a mostly wasted session.

Dave the Diver takes its restaurant management angle just as seriously as its dives. Players are given full control over the establishment, allowing them to do things like hire staff and alter the menu. Even more impressively, the game is also stuffed with minigames that never overstay their welcome.

Dave the Diver

Released
June 28, 2023

Developer(s)
Mintrocket

Genre(s)
Simulation, Adventure

How Long To Beat
23 Hours

Dragon Age: Origins

Dragon Age: Origins Alistair fighting an Ogre

An online connection could be required to set up Dragon Age: Origins or to access its DLC; however, the base game is an offline experience. Even if recent years do not represent the developer’s peak, BioWare is nevertheless responsible for some of the greatest Western RPGs of all time. The company was on fire during the 2000s, producing Knights of the Old Republic, Jade Empire, Mass Effect, and Baldur’s Gate 2, all of which are ambitious projects that prioritize single-player campaigns.

Dragon Age: Origins is arguably BioWare’s crowning achievement, particularly on PC. While set in a somewhat typical fantasy world, the RPG does a beautiful job of exploring its universe’s mythology, characters, and social systems. Each playable race comes with a unique origin story, which not only serves to enhance the game’s replayability but also expands its overall world-building. The combat system is tactical in nature without being overwhelmingly complex.

Dragon Age Origins

Released
November 3, 2009

Developer(s)
BioWare

Genre(s)
RPG

How Long To Beat
40 Hours

Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands

tiny tina's wonderlands update rings

After the success of Borderlands 3, Gearbox opted to take a bit of a detour, releasing a spin-off starring everyone’s favorite explosions expert. Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands builds upon the stellar ideas of Borderlands 2‘s Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon Keep DLC. Set in a Dungeons & Dragons-style tabletop game called Bunkers & Badasses, players take on the role of the Fatemaker as they go on a quest to take down the reincarnated Dragon Lord.

RELATED: Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands: The Best Magic Spells For The Early Game, Ranked

While there are some differences from the mainline entries, Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands is still ultimately a first-person shooter with some light RPG elements. Players also get to create their own characters and class, which is a nice change from the Borderlands trilogy. With a fun story and rock-solid gunplay, this FPS is enjoyable both in single-player and multiplayer.

Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands uses Denuvo.

Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands

Released
March 25, 2022

Developer(s)
Gearbox Software

Genre(s)
Action RPG, FPS

How Long To Beat
16 Hours

Marvel’s Spider-Man Remastered

marvel's spider-man remastered suits skins cosmetics mods potential

There are plenty of good superhero games on PC, but for the longest time, it seemed like one of the best Spider-Man adventures was destined to remain on the PS4. However, Insomniac Games’ open-world epic eventually made the jump to computers, and the port is generally pretty good.

Packaged with the Black Cat DLC, the remaster looks fantastic, tells a gripping story, and controls like a dream. The latter is the game’s true selling point as Marvel’s Spider-Man absolutely nails its movement. Swinging across Manhattan is a joy, while the combat is fluid and stylish.

Marvel’s Spider-Man Remastered

Developer(s)
Insomniac Games

Genre(s)
Action-Adventure, Open-World

How Long To Beat
18 Hours

Stray

Stray alley

This sci-fi game about a stray cat took the world by storm when it debuted, garnering positive reviews across the board. Stray is a charming single-player title set in an underground cyberpunk city filled with robots. Players step into the paws of an adorable feline that has found itself stuck in this hub, and they head out on a journey to return to the surface world.

Stray blends platforming, puzzle-solving, exploration, and combat to produce a short but sweet experience. The game does not hit everything out of the park, but the overall project is greater than the sum of its parts.

Stray

Released
July 19, 2022

Developer(s)
BlueTwelve Studio

Genre(s)
Adventure

How Long To Beat
5 Hours

Neon White

Neon White Location Of The Gift In Mission 2-10 Dancer

Speedrunning is not for everyone, but Neon White just might convince the non-believers. An action-platformer centering around a fascinating card system, Neon White challenges players to repeatedly run through levels so they seek the best time they can manage. While there is some variety, most stages require players to kill every enemy on their way to the endpoint. Completing a level might be simple enough, but the goal is to master them, a process that demands and rewards repeat runs so that each inch of the layout is memorized.

Neon White feels great to play on a fundamental level, and the game’s visuals are stylish and striking. The story is pretty bad, but it does not get in the way of the gameplay. Once its gameplay loop sinks its teeth into someone, Neon White does not let go, firmly establishing itself as one of 2022’s best single-player games.

Neon White

Released
June 16, 2022

Developer(s)
Angel Matrix

Genre(s)
FPS, Puzzle

How Long To Beat
11 Hours

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder’s Revenge

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Shredder's Revenge Line Up

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder’s Revenge does not have to be a solitary experience since it supports online co-op, but it can be played and enjoyed solo or locally. A throwback to beat ’em ups of yesteryear, Shredder’s Revenge expertly combines nostalgia and modern innovations to deliver an experience that will satisfy long-time fans searching for the next Turtles in Time and people dipping their toes into this genre for the first time.

RELATED: TMNT: Shredder’s Revenge – Things You Should Know About Co-Op

Boasting great visuals, a diverse roster of playable characters, and a fun selection of enemies and levels taken from a plethora of TMNT properties, Shredder’s Revenge knocks it out of the park. The game is also quite challenging and does not pull its punches, which helps extend the campaign’s replayability.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder’s Revenge

Released
June 16, 2022

Developer(s)
Tribute Games Inc.

Genre(s)
Beat ‘Em Up

How Long To Beat
3 Hours

Elden Ring

elden-ring-icy-bridge

PvP can be a big part of the Elden Ring experience, provided a player wants it to be. While online certainly adds another dimension to FromSoftware’s masterpiece, Elden Ring also offers an offline mode for those who prefer to focus solely on PvE or do not have access to the internet at that moment. An absolutely massive action RPG that implements the Souls formula in a proper open-world setting, Elden Ring has garnered almost universal acclaim, receiving praise for its combat, exploration, and replayability.

Backed to the brim with bosses, lore, weapons, and stunning vistas, Elden Ring is an early contender for the best game of the decade, regardless of whether someone plays online or offline. The Lands Between are harrowing, deadly, and well worth visiting – just be prepared to die a lot.

Elden Ring

Released
February 25, 2022

Developer(s)
From Software

Genre(s)
RPG, Action

How Long To Beat
58 Hours

LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga

Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga Best Order

The latest entry in the Lego gaming franchise, The Skywalker Saga is an ambitious project that covers all nine main Star Wars movies. Beautifully animated and packed with wholesome humor, this package is more than just a love letter to the sci-fi property; it is an accessible open-world game overflowing with content, be it unlockable characters or planets to visit.

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Offering fun for all ages, Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga has a long campaign, pretty good combat, rewarding exploration, and classic co-op. While not everything about the game hits the mark, the good far outweighs the lackluster.

Rogue Legacy 2

rogue legacy 2 he who gives you two choices

After being in early access for more than a year, Rogue Legacy 2 is finally out, and the game builds beautifully on its very good predecessor. As before, players jump into randomly generated dungeons filled with loot and enemies. Once death falls upon them, players move on to the next generation, picking another character who inherits unique traits that might or might not be useful. Although dungeons reset in each run, there are some elements of progression that remain fixed, specifically stuff bought by using gold acquired during a playthrough.

Containing 15 classes that feel distinct enough from each other, Rogue Legacy 2 packs in a lot of content and replay value. There are plenty of Metroidvania indie games on Steam, but few come close to matching Rogue Legacy 2‘s brilliance.

Rogue Legacy 2

Released
April 28, 2022

Developer(s)
Cellar Door Games

Genre(s)
Roguelike, Metroidvania

How Long To Beat
26 Hours

Batman: Arkham City

batman arkham city open world superhero genre side content gameplay traversal cape glide

Rocksteady’s Batman trilogy still arguably represents the peak of superhero games, and an argument could be made that this accolade should be extended to the action genre in general. All three titles are highly regarded in their own right, but if forced to highlight the pick of the bunch, Batman: Arkham City has to get the nod. Unlike its predecessor, the 2011 entry expands its playground to an open-world setting as Batman finds himself investigating the eponymous prison.

Arkham City has fantastic combat, a memorable main storyline that includes a wide range of Batman’s rogues’ gallery, and a ton of side content that can easily balloon a playthrough’s runtime to more than double its normal length. Even though it is not more than a decade old, Arkham City is still visually impressive, which serves as a testament to Rocksteady’s art design.

Batman Arkham City

Released
October 18, 2011

Developer(s)
Rocksteady Studios

Genre(s)
Action, Adventure

How Long To Beat
14 Hours

Vampire Survivors

Dommario in Mad Forest in Vampire Survivors

Available for less than the price of a Starbucks coffee, Vampire Survivors is a bullet hell roguelite that is in early access. Since its late 2021 launch on Steam, this indie game has frequently released patches containing new stages, characters, and weapons, most of which add hours of content to the base experience.

The premise is simple: pick a character, enter a stage, and survive for as long as possible. As enemies are slain, players will eventually level up, providing access to a slew of new power-ups and weapons. This straightforward concept produces an addictive gameplay loop that contains far more depth than might initially seem to be the case. Most characters are also quite different from each other, greatly altering the ways stages are experienced.

Vampire Survivors

Released
December 17, 2021

Developer(s)
Luca Galante

Genre(s)
Roguelike

How Long To Beat
6 Hours

Tales Of Arise

Tales of Arise Alphen and Shionne DLC costumes

For the most part, JRPGs tend to be (lengthy) single-player experiences, so they are typically a safe bet for anyone looking for offline games for PC. Bandai Namco’s Tales of Arise is the most recent entry in the long-running real-time action RPG franchise, and it is one of the best in the JRPG series.

Narratively ambitious and dark, particularly in its opening hours, Tales of Arise delivers memorable characters, a solid progression system, and fantastic fast-paced combat. Visually, the JRPG is also quite nice, even if it doesn’t reach Final Fantasy levels of gorgeousness.

Tales of Arise

Released
September 10, 2021

Developer(s)
Bandai Namco Studios

Genre(s)
Action RPG

How Long To Beat
40 Hours

God Of War

god of war kratos axe shield enemy

Originally released on the PS4, Santa Monica’s God of War finally made its way to PC in January 2022. A soft reboot, this entry significantly alters the franchise’s status quo, dropping Kratos in a new mythos while introducing a completely different combat style.

RELATED: New God of War PC Update Brings Quality-of-Life Changes

A third-person action game that places a heavy emphasis on its story, God of War follows Kratos and his son, Atreus, as they go on a journey to lay down the ashes of their wife and mother respectively. With no multiplayer elements, God of War is a purely single-player experience, one that delivers plenty of content and polish.

God of War (2018)

Developer(s)
Santa Monica Studio

Genre(s)
Action, Adventure

How Long To Beat
20 Hours

Crusader Kings 3

Crusader Kings 3 Council

Grand strategy games are dense, time-consuming affairs that come with a high entry barrier for newcomers. Historically, the genre has struggled to balance accessibility with complexity, with most of the best projects prioritizing the latter at the complete expense of the former; if nothing else, Crusader Kings 3 balances this juggling act better than most of its peers. And, just to be clear, Paradox’s game has a lot more going for it than just that.

Dropped into the Middle Ages, players lead a family dynasty through multiple generations, a process that marries interpersonal drama along with political ambition. Crusader Kings 3‘s brilliance lies in the way it manages to offer massive world-expanding scope alongside small-scale household squabbles that are just as engaging as full-blown wars.

Crusader Kings 3

Released
September 1, 2020

Developer(s)
Paradox Interactive

Genre(s)
RPG, Grand Strategy

How Long To Beat
70 Hours

NieR: Automata

nier automata anime adaptation

NieR: Automata is the sequel to a niche spin-off of a relatively obscure franchise, Drakengard, and it is awesome. Although a familiarity with the previous entries can heighten the experience, NieR: Automata mostly stands on its own, delivering an ambitious storyline that pits androids against alien robots.

As this game was directed by Yoko Taro, the story takes quite a few surprising turns and explores a range of philosophical themes. Developed by PlatinumGames, NieR: Automata‘s hack and slash combat is reminiscent of Bayonetta and Metal Gear Rising, although it is backed by more RPG elements.

NieR: Automata

Released
March 7, 2017

Developer(s)
Platinum Games

Genre(s)
Action RPG

How Long To Beat
22 Hours

Rise Of The Tomb Raider

Rise-of-the-Tomb-Raider-Lara-Croft

Crystal Dynamics’ Tomb Raider trilogy is a dependable choice for adventure fans. At the bare minimum, all three games are at least good, and the first two entries achieve far more than just the minimum. While 2013’s Tomb Raider is a must-play title, its sequel, Rise of the Tomb Raider, is superior in nearly every way.

Set in Siberia, the 2015 game finds Lara Croft exploring the snowy wilderness in search of the mythical city of Kitezh. The story takes quite a few unexpected turns, and the side content permits Lara to investigate traditional tombs akin to the pre-Crystal Dynamics era. The gameplay blends exploration, crafting, gunplay, puzzles, and stealth, and Rise of the Tomb Raider handles all these elements well.

Rise of the Tomb Raider

Released
November 10, 2015

Developer(s)
Crystal Dynamics

Genre(s)
Action

How Long To Beat
14 Hours

Red Dead Redemption 2

Red Dead Redemption 2 Gold Achievements

Rockstar might not release new games all that often, but each debut is an event. Following its console launch, Red Dead Redemption 2 took more than a year to come to PC, and while the transition was not seamless, the game nevertheless offers a premium single-player experience. While Red Dead Online obviously requires internet, the main game can be played offline, although players will need a connection when they are signing up for the first time.

Set toward the end of North America’s Wild West era, RDR2 follows Arthur Morgan as he deals with internal tension as part of the Van der Linde gang. Boasting a gorgeous and detailed open-world, the game is a technological tour de force with precious few peers in the gaming industry. Narratively, RDR2 is constantly emotionally captivating, which is hardly an easy feat considering the campaign’s length.

Undertale

Undertale CROPPED

Toby Fox’s RPG has established itself as one of the genre’s greatest representatives, and that goes beyond just indie titles. Inspired by games such as Mother, Undertale cleverly examines and critiques the player’s actions as they interact with the inhabitants of the Underground, an area located within the Earth.

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Undertale might look simple on the surface, however, the charming 8-bit visuals hide an incredibly complex experience both in terms of story and gameplay. Undertale is one of those releases that everyone should try at one point or another, especially since it is quite cheap to purchase.

Undertale

Released
September 15, 2015

Developer(s)
Toby Fox

Genre(s)
RPG

How Long To Beat
7 Hours

Subnautica: Below Zero

subnautica below zero underwater

Unknown Worlds Entertainment’s sequel to 2018’s Subnautica spent a couple of years in early access before making its full release, and the wait was worth it. Subnautica: Below Zero takes place in an awe-inspiring open-world that can also get terrifying really quickly.

A survival game with a strong sense of adventure, Subnautica: Below Zero takes place on planet 4546B and follows Robin Ayou as she tries to learn what happened to her sister, Samantha. Like its predecessor, Below Zero is a gripping single-player game that rewards exploration.

Devil May Cry 5

Devil May Cry 5 Dante stares at the viewer with a sword slung over his shoulder.

After a long hiatus and a divisive spin-off, Capcom’s Devil May Cry made its glorious (and stylish) return in 2019. Similar to the fourth game, Nero and Dante are both playable in Devil May Cry 5, and they are joined by a new character called V. All three fighters control very differently, with each one being given mechanics that set them apart from the crowd.

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Boasting high-octane hack and slash combat that is accessible but difficult to master, Devil May Cry 5 is endlessly replayable due to the sheer number of combos possible. Newcomers to the series can start with this entry, although they should still seek out all the other games besides Devil May Cry 2 and, perhaps, DmC: Devil May Cry.

Devil May Cry 5

Released
March 8, 2019

Developer(s)
Capcom

Genre(s)
Action

How Long To Beat
11 Hours

System Shock 2

scifi game 1999

Some games are the definition of timeless, and System Shock 2 falls into that category. This does not mean the game has not aged in various ways, as it naturally has, but its strengths are so undeniable that they override any criticisms. System Shock 2 is a horror RPG set in a starship, with the gameplay revolving around exploration and some combat.

System Shock 2 tells an engrossing narrative featuring a contender for the greatest villain in gaming history, SHODAN. The plot is built up nicely through environmental storytelling and cutscenes, culminating in an unforgettable final act. System Shock 2 is available on Steam and GOG, but the latter is a slightly better pick for offline play.

Persona 5 Royal

Persona 5 Royal Remastered Ann Morgana Ryuji Joker

What once seemed impossible is now a reality. Steam has multiple Persona games, including mainline entries and spin-offs. Persona 4 Golden is a great PS2 JRPG with one of the best storylines in the series; however, its sequel, Persona 5 Royal, is a better entry point for newcomers. The Phantom Thieves are a group of teenagers who change the hearts of villains by jumping into Palaces, which are manifestations of a person’s psyches.

Split into dungeons with turn-based combat and social sim sections, P5R handles both aspects of the package beautifully. The former’s battle system is relatively by the numbers, but the combat is enhanced through the game’s stylish presentation. Meanwhile, the social sim aspect is engrossing and addictive.

Persona 5 Royal uses Denuvo.

Persona 5 Royal

Developer(s)
Atlus

Genre(s)
JRPG

How Long To Beat
100 Hours

Disco Elysium – The Final Cut

Artwork of Disco Elysium showing a man giving the

Any fan of role-playing games owes it to themselves to give Disco Elysium a spin. ZA/UM crafted an intricate detective story that puts heavy emphasis on player choice and world-building. Exploring philosophical and social themes, Disco Elysium follows a detective suffering from amnesia as they investigate a murder while trying to piece together their own backstory.

The base game was already fantastic, but The Final Cut update took it a step further by adding new voice acting and quests. Permitting the lack of combat is not a deal-breaker for a potential customer, Disco Elysium is a stellar RPG that offers fantastic writing, a fully-realized setting, and some of the best dialogue in gaming.

Disco Elysium

Released
October 15, 2019

Developer(s)
ZA/UM

Genre(s)
RPG

How Long To Beat
23 Hours

Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart

Combat in Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart

Slowly but surely, Sony has been bringing its console exclusives to PC. Now, they have not all survived the transition in one piece, but most of them are at least in playable states. Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart weathered the procedure better than something like The Last of Us Part 1, and Insomniac’s game holds up beautifully on PC. This release marks the first time the long-running franchise has been available natively on platforms such as Steam, and while newcomers might feel anxious about jumping into the 16th entry in the series, Rift Apart works fairly well as a gateway project.

Ratchet & Clank has always blended third-person shooter gameplay with 3D platforming set in gorgeous worlds that present some room for exploration, even if the stories are generally quite linear. Rift Apart is, ultimately, just another Ratchet & Clank adventure, albeit one fine-tuned and polished to near perfection. While simple, the gunplay is an absolute blast, and it is enhanced by a decent progression system. The story is pretty good too, and it introduces a new playable duo who serve as great counterparts to Ratchet and Clank.

Slay The Spire

slay-the-spire-ironclad-gameplay

Slay the Spire, developed by MegaCrit Games, is a rare game that creates an entire subgenre around it. This time, the name of the game is deck-building rogue-lite. The player will select one of four distinct classes and attempt to climb to the top of the Spire and destroy it. It’s a simple concept, and it’s really easy to pick up and play on any kind of PC.

However, each run plays wildly differently due to the draft system of the cards. There are a ton of different synergies between cards, so the number of viable decks is massive. Plus, with the added bonuses of Relics spicing things up, it’s equally easy to get disgustingly overpowered or just fizzle out on the first act. It may take a few runs to get the hang of it, but the thrill of getting that incredible run is unmatched. This game is one that can easily absorb countless hours and is totally worth it.

Slay the Spire

Released
January 23, 2019

Developer(s)
MegaCrit

Genre(s)
Roguelike, Deckbuilding

How Long To Beat
12 Hours

Outer Wilds

Outer Wilds Gameplay campfire

Space-faring games often struggle to find their footing. With a setting as vast as space itself (quite literally), it’s very easy to get bloated and miss making a solid experience. However, that’s not a problem for Outer Wilds, a space exploration adventure game from Mobius Digital.

This title will send the player across the galaxy, stuck in a never-ending loop. It’s incredibly atmospheric and loaded with moments that are equal parts awe-inspiring and terrifying. It’s also not a game that overstays its welcome, which is much appreciated for players who want a condensed experience. Plus, now that it’s no longer exclusive to the Epic Games Store, all PC players can check it out on their preferred platform. Outer Wilds is a critical darling for a reason, and absolutely worth checking out.

Outer Wilds

Released
May 28, 2019

Developer(s)
Mobius Digital

Genre(s)
Adventure

How Long To Beat
16 Hours

Hades

Hades Game Zagreus Persephone And Hades

In a world of samey, top-down action roguelites, SuperGiant Games delivers an experience above any level of expectations with Hades. It takes all the best parts of the studio’s previous titles and combines them to form an expertly crafted roguelite. As a game, Hades is tough but fair, and its progression systems are incredibly rewarding. Grinding runs is a blast.

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However, the special part of Hades is that the trademark storytelling of SuperGiant Games remains a strong point. As the player battles out of Hell, there’s a cast of colorful characters that have their own development over the course of the experience. Roguelites tend to be weaker in the narrative department, but Hades makes sure that its story is as finely tuned as the rest of the experience. It’s no understatement to say that this is SuperGiant’s magnum opus and worthy of a look from anyone who enjoys quality action games.

Hades

Released
September 17, 2020

Developer(s)
Supergiant Games

Genre(s)
Action RPG

How Long To Beat
23 Hours

Tunic

tunic key art

Tunic takes inspiration from classic Legend of Zelda, which is never a bad thing. More importantly, very few games come as close as this indie title to matching the quality of Nintendo’s franchise, all the while still incorporating enough fresh ideas to stand on its own two feet. Tunic is charming and challenging, with a reasonably lengthy campaign that packs in a fair amount of variety.

This 2022 release absolutely nails its gameplay, combat, and environments. Visually, Tunic is gorgeous by any metric, and that extends to its enemy designs. If someone is searching for one of the best offline games for PC, this title needs to be in contention.

Tunic

Released
March 16, 2022

Developer(s)
Andrew Shouldice

Genre(s)
Adventure

How Long To Beat
12 Hours

Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice

Senua game

Ninja Theory’s Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice is a psychological adventure game that deals with mental health and grief. During the game’s reasonably short campaign, players witness Senua struggle against external and internal demons, crafting a deeply personal experience that works on multiple levels. Hellblade is powerful and should be sought out by anyone interested in a story-driven title.

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The gameplay is not groundbreaking but it complements the story well, while also being quite intense at times. With a sequel on the way, this is the ideal time to play through Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice.

Sid Meier’s Civilization 6

Civilization 6 Starting Position With A Nearby Natural Wonder

One noteworthy change to Civilization 6 is a “religion” condition that allows players to win the game by converting the world to their faith. As a turn-based real-time strategy game, Civilization 6 has few close competitors. Raising a civilization from the feudal ages to the modern era is too fun in Civilization 6.

The game can be played offline for competitive matches against smart AI. Civilization 6 has relatively low requirements compared to other leading PC games. This is one game you can’t miss!

Civilization 6

Released
October 21, 2016

Developer(s)
Firaxis Games

Genre(s)
Strategy

How Long To Beat
23 Hours

Hollow Knight

stag nest hollow knight

There have been a ton of Indie games released in the modern age that have defied expectations and carved out their own chunk of the entertainment industry as proof that games don’t have to have an AAA budget to be a spectacular adventure. Hollow Knight should be considered one of the poster children for this phenomenon, as it’s been gripping fans ever since its release back in 2017.

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The bug-based Metroidvania features gorgeous visuals, punishing difficulty, and some of the most entertaining boss fights in recent memory. Even those who don’t love side-scrolling adventures or platformers find it hard to resist the charm that Team Cherry presents with Hollow Knight. It’s an experience that all players should check out for themselves, at least once.

Hollow Knight

Released
February 24, 2017

Developer(s)
Team Cherry

Genre(s)
Metroidvania

How Long To Beat
27 Hours

Diablo 2 (& Resurrected)

A Barbarian attacking foes in melee in Diablo 2 Resurrected

Release Date

June 28, 2000

Developer

Blizzard North

Genre

Action RPG

How Long to Beat (Main Story)

35 Hours

Amazon Link

Listing Page

Largely hailed as the greatest action RPG of all time, Diablo 2 is a bona fide masterpiece that casts a wide shadow over the entire gaming industry. Blizzard’s title offers players the option to pick offline or online, and they both have their positives. The latter should be picked if someone plans to take advantage of the game’s trade system, which can be a good way to make extra cash. Online is also required to take part in Diablo 2: Resurrected‘s Ladder seasons.

These features might make online seem like the obvious pick for Diablo 2, but offline is not only a valid option but also preferred by many people. If someone opts to treat the game like a single-player experience, they will be afforded a few noteworthy benefits. For one, the areas’ maps will remain consistent from game to game, which is not the case when playing online. Also, and this is probably the biggest advantage of offline mode, players will be allowed to respec their characters’ stats as often as they want.

Diablo 2

Released
June 28, 2000

Developer(s)
Blizzard

Genre(s)
Action RPG

How Long To Beat
34 Hours

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

geralt of rivia in the witcher 3: wild hunt

The expansive world of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt can overwhelm players through its sheer scale. This is a game where people can log hundreds of hours and still have something new to discover. The enemy, weapon, and town variety make the game a masterpiece.

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As an offline-only game, what The Witcher 3 does, it does perfectly. There is no need for online as it would only take away from the game. If you only play one role-playing game this year, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is a solid choice.

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

Released
May 19, 2015

Developer(s)
CD Projekt Red

Genre(s)
RPG, Action, Adventure

How Long To Beat
52 Hours

Stardew Valley

Stardew Valley farm.

Those looking for something a bit more relaxing than many of the high-octane hits found throughout this list can opt for Stardew Valley, an incredibly rich and detailed Indie game that features a surprising amount of depth. Those who enjoy games like Minecraft, Harvest Moon, or even Virtual Novels and Dating Simulators will feel right at home in Stardew Valley‘s beautiful landscapes.

Players will take over a dilapidated farm, working hard to restore it to its former glory and making friends along the way. There is something here for everyone, thanks to Stardew Valley‘s dating sim elements, exploration, building mechanics, and combat (for those seeking a little danger).

Stardew Valley

Released
February 26, 2016

Developer(s)
ConcernedApe

Genre(s)
RPG, Simulation

How Long To Beat
53 Hours

Dead Cells

Dead Cells game

Release Date

August 6, 2018

Developer

Motion Twin

Genre

Action Roguelike

How Long to Beat (Main Story)

15 Hours

Steam Link

Dead Cells

Amazon Link

Nintendo Switch

This overlooked gem is a roguelike-Metroidvania that in some ways is comparable to the Dark Souls series. Players will have to combat fierce enemies while avoiding the obstacles of the game. Falling into a pit of spikes can be frustrating, which is why not everyone will appreciate Dead Cells.

Before playing Dead Cells, it’s worth noting that the game is very unforgiving. As a roguelike, dying in the game forces players to start over from the beginning, and Dead Cells is harder than this subgenre’s average title.

Dead Cells

Released
August 7, 2018

Developer(s)
Motion Twin

Genre(s)
Roguelike

How Long To Beat
15 Hours

BioShock: The Collection

bioshock-big-daddy-key-art-cover

Neatly packaged in one collection on consoles but sold separately on Steam, the BioShock: The Collection offers remastered versions of all three games. The BioShock franchise is considered one of the greatest single-player trilogies in gaming. Its refined gameplay mechanics combined with its story that twists and turns make it a must-play offline PC game.

With villains like Andrew Ryan in the original BioShock and Zachary Hale Comstock in BioShock Infinite, there is plenty of dense subject matter to keep players enthralled.

BioShock: Infinite

Released
March 26, 2013

Developer(s)
Irrational Games

Genre(s)
Shooter

How Long To Beat
12 Hours

Doom (2016)

DOOM 2016

Doom (2016) is arguably the best attempt at a reimagining of the Doom franchise. The fast-paced combat combined with brutal kills is a first-person shooter game at its finest. The single-player campaign could be the highlight of Doom. The game is set on the planet Mars, which is too freaking cool.

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Doom Eternal, the sequel to Doom, is also a thrill ride from beginning to end and incorporates a few noteworthy changes to the gameplay. For one, there is now a dodge mechanic.

DOOM (2016)

Released
May 13, 2016

Developer(s)
id Software

Genre(s)
FPS

How Long To Beat
12 Hours

Half-Life 2

Artowkr from Half-Life 2 showing Gordon Freeman being choked by a barnacle.

Valve’s Half-Life 2 is generally considered one of the best, if not the best offline PC game of all time. Launching in 2004 and spawning two episodes, Half-Life 2 expands everything from its predecessor, turning a claustrophobic shooter into a blockbuster. With Earth succumbing to a multidimensional force called the Combine, Gordon Freeman goes on a cross-country trip as part of humanity’s resistance unit.

After all this time, Half-Life 2 naturally shows its age; however, the game remains fun and exhilarating to play. While a VR release, 2020’s Half-Life: Alyx is also a great offline game.

Half-Life 2

Released
November 16, 2004

Developer(s)
Valve

Genre(s)
Shooter

How Long To Beat
13 Hours

Grand Theft Auto 5

Grand Theft Auto 5

Rockstar hit the jackpot with Grand Theft Auto Online, crafting a multiplayer package that continues to be a huge success nearly a decade following its introduction. While the single-player campaign has been overshadowed by the online version, Grand Theft Auto 5 nevertheless offers one of the best offline PC gaming experiences on the market.

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With three playable characters, a detailed open-world set (primarily) in Los Santos, and a ton of side-content outside a long main story, GTA 5 feels complete and satisfying. Time has done little to dull this game’s impact.

Grand Theft Auto 5

Released
September 17, 2013

Developer(s)
Rockstar North

Genre(s)
Open-World, Action

How Long To Beat
32 Hours

Skyrim

Fans of the series are eagerly waiting for The Elder Scrolls 6 since the franchise is arguably at its best when focusing on offline single-player content. The Elder Scrolls Online has a sizable fan base, but the difference between The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and The Elder Scrolls Online is night and day.

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is one of the best games of all time because of its immersive quests, beautiful landscapes, and enemy variety. The game regenerates quests, so there is virtually no end to the game.

Skyrim

Released
November 11, 2011

Developer(s)
Bethesda

Genre(s)
RPG, Action, Adventure

How Long To Beat
26 Hours

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