Over the years many gaming developers have turned their attention away from PC exclusive single-player games. With so many games without any distinct visual style crowding the multiplayer space, it can get hard to keep track of all the single-player games out there. Fret not though, as we’ve compiled a list of the very best single player games which demand your attention.
Here are the 10 best Single Player PC Games You Must Play
Let’s start small here. Undertale may look like a cute little indie game without too much ambition at first. However, the moment you start the tutorial the game starts mocking you and your ability to play said small game. It’s a rich RPG experience with a charming cast of characters and a robust single-player only campaign. It may not be for everyone, especially if you’re one who pushes PC games to the limit, but its got a lot of heart. Now that’s something you don’t see often in today’s games.
9. Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice
Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice, developed by Ninja Theory, marks one of the best uses of sound design in videogames. The game delves into hard-hitting topics like psychosis and uses binaural sound to a great extent for conveying that. Hellblade is well known for being taxing on high-end systems, as it was built on Unreal Engine 4. Even now, as I play the game on an RTX 2060 Super, it gets the GPU to heat up really fast. It doesn’t have any fancy raytracing effects, but it does look gorgeous. If there’s any game that’ll get you to invest in high-end headphones, it’s this one.
The original Crysis was played less and used more as a benchmark for testing PC performance back when it came out. The game employed the use of complex graphical features that was leagues ahead of any game that came out at the time. Perhaps that’s why when people talk about Crysis, they talk less about the story and more about what it represented for PC hardware. Even years later, people still use it as a baseline for testing the graphical prowess of their gaming rigs. Aside from that, it’s still one of the best single-player PC-exclusive experiences you can find.
7. Metro: Exodus
The third game in the Metro series released earlier this year to critical acclaim. While most of the attention went towards its stunning use of RTX technology, the game itself is pretty well made. 4A Games have made a stunning open-world here and while it does look good on consoles like Xbox One X, its true potential is something only a high-end PC can tap into.
Remedy Entertainment’s Control was a breath of fresh air when it came out a few months ago. While the console port of the game suffered a lot, the PC port made perhaps the best use of raytracing in gaming yet. Control with RTX turned on looks utterly gorgeous, and it’s an experience you can only get on PC right now. Of course, not everyone will be able to get the same experience because of NVIDIA’s RTX exclusivity right now, but even without those, it looks great. And it plays great too. We reviewed the game and gave it a near-perfect score. Suffice it to say that Remedy has put themselves on the map as a competent single-player game developer.
5. Assassin’s Creed II
The second game in Ubisoft’s signature franchise, Assassin’s Creed II managed to improve every aspect of the original. It’s hard to think that its been 10 years since its debut, considering just how much it changed the landscape of the franchise. Ask any die-hard Assassin’s Creed fan which one’s their favorite, and odds are they’ll point to AC2. While by today’s standards the game may not look so good, back in 2009 it was fine. I say fine because we already went over Crysis above.
Arkane Studios redefined the stealth-action genre with the first Dishonored. The first-person game follows Corvo as he embarks on an adventure to save princess Emily Kaldwin. Set in the fictional city of Dunwall, the game has a lot to offer in terms of stealth mechanics. While its sequel did not fare well, both in terms of reception and in-game performance especially on PC, the first game is a special gem. The game spawned a spinoff too (Death of the Outsider), but even that did not manage to capture the first game’s magic. The main campaign is just over 10 hours long, as it doesn’t overstay its welcome unlike a lot of other single-player games.
3. Mass Effect Trilogy
Okay, this isn’t necessarily one game per se, but the Mass Effect trilogy is essentially one big story. Developed by BioWare in its glory days, this trilogy pioneered space-exploration based epics in video games. It redefined BioWare as one of the best developers out there with a deep devotion towards telling well written single-player focused stories. Of course, we all know what happened afterward. The first game in the series was an Xbox exclusive for a long time, with it making its debut on PC only a while later. Regardless of how you feel about the trilogy’s end, Mass Effect remains a genre-defining RPG.
2. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
Ah, Skyrim. At this point, Bethesda is known more for re-releasing Skyrim on every possible platform than anything else. The fifth installment in the Elder Scrolls series may not have the biggest open-world, but it is chock full of quests. The game’s PC version is infamous for its near-infinite mod support and has hundreds of hours of content to provide. While neither the original version nor its remaster don’t look as good as current games, it’s mod support can help make it as good looking as you want it to. Close to our first pick below, Skyrim remains one of the best RPGs out there, high on our list of best single-player PC games.
1. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
Of course, it had to come to this. Arguably the best single-player game of the generation, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is also the RPG to beat. By now almost all of us are familiar with Geralt’s tale alongside memorable characters like Ciri, Yennefer, Triss and more. However, if you still haven’t tried this gem and are cautious, the game goes on sale very often. This open-world RPG will hook you for hundreds of hours and still have more to give. We can’t recommend it enough, and its PC version if the best way to experience the game. While it’s 3 years old now, The Witcher 3 remains one of the best looking games of this generation. And hey, if you still want to enhance the look, you can always go for mods.