We've entered a slower holiday release season, but it's been a hell of a year, particularly for RPGs, with Baldur's Gate 3, Starfield, and Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty all releasing in late summer. Those three epics are enough to keep anyone busy for the rest of the year and beyond, but there are also lots of new, not-so-gargantuan games worth getting into this year. If you haven't heard about Pizza Tower yet, you're about to.
This list is specifically our answer to the question "what new PC games should I play right now?" with picks pulled from the best recent PC games, a few old favorites we think now is a good time to revisit, and some hidden gems. It's a reflection of what the PC Gamer team is playing right now, not a list of the all-time best games ever, although there'll be overlap. (Our highest review score of last year was 95%. Very few games have scored higher than that in PC Gamer's nearly 30-year history.)
For a more comprehensive list of great PC games past and present, check out our annual Top 100 list of the best games on PC. We have some fresh picks for the best Steam Deck games if you have one of Valve's handhelds on the way.
We also stay on top of the year's calendar with our guide to the new games of 2023, organized by month.
Some good news related to this list: The graphics card shortage has finally eased up, which means it's now possible to build a new gaming PC for a non-outrageous price. We have a guide to putting together an entry-level gaming PC for around $750, and we have some recommendations for pre-built PCs, too.
Reference these emojis to narrow down what you're looking for in our selection of the best PC games.
- 💻 = Suitable for low-end PCs
- 🙋♀️ = Singleplayer
- 🙋♀️🙋♀️ = Multiplayer
- 🎮 = Best with a controller
- 🆓 = Free-to-play
What we're playing now
These are the games the PC Gamer team is currently playing: the up-to-the-minute (or at least, month) stuff on our Steam quick launch menus. For more, check out all of our recent game reviews as well as last year's GOTY winners.
Alan Wake 2 (88%) 🙋♀
"In the first playable moments of Alan Wake 2, you control a naked, balding, middle-aged man stumbling in confusion around a forest." Never stop being Remedy, Remedy.
Jusant (89%) 🙋♀
"An incredible rock climbing game", as we put it in our review, with "a compelling narrative that gently weaves its way through your journey."
Baldur's Gate 3 (97%) 🙋♀️🙋♀️
Our highest review score in 16 years goes to "an unrivalled RPG that will swallow your life whole." It's true: Few of us at PC Gamer haven't been swept up by Baldur's Gate 3's D&D sandbox. Starfield's good too, but it has struggled to pull us away from our tadpole friends.
Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty (87%) 🙋♀️
Not only do we really like Cyberpunk's first and only expansion, we're very pleased with the 2.0 update, which is free for all owners, and improves the whole game with changes to skill progression, AI, and other fundamental aspects of the RPG. Now is definitely the time to play Cyberpunk 2077, if you haven't.
Armored Core 6: Fires of Rubicon (87%) 🙋♀
Another FromSoftware banger. AC6 departs from the Souls formula the studio has become most associated with over the past decade to revive its action series where you're a "a one mech army instead of some nasty little guy," as Wes put it in his review.
Remnant 2 (84%) 🙋♀️🙋♀️
Remnant: From the Ashes fans are liable to say that the 2019 co-op shooter was under appreciated. Its sequel might correct that, attracting an even bigger crowd with better combat and an even greater volume of procedural surprises and weird bosses. Just wait till you fight the Labyrinth Sentinel...
Dave the Diver (91%) 🙋♀️🎮💻
The biggest surprise hit of the year so far, and genuinely a GOTY contender. Dave the Diver seems like a simple fishing and restaurant management sim at first, but it goes much deeper than that...
Jagged Alliance 3 (81%) 🙋♀️🙋♀️
A very long-awaited strategy sequel—24 years!—in which you hire mercs for tactical turn-based combat. Goofy, old-school fun with an RPG layer that sets it apart from other strategy games.
Diablo 4 (85%) 🙋♀️🙋♀️
We're not in love with the live servicey stuff, especially where the MMO treadmill design undermines the gruesome, occult atmosphere, but the clicking on monsters? That bit is great.
Street Fighter 6 (89%) 🙋♀️🙋♀️🎮
The new Street Fighter rules, especially for newcomers: After messing about in the tutorials, character guides, and combo trials, I feel like I understand Street Fighter better than I ever have. Could my scrub days be over? (Unlikely.)
Amnesia: The Bunker (93%) 🙋♀️
Amnesia keeps it compact for the latest brilliant game in the series, which is set in a WWI bunker. You have one gun, and there is one monster... which can't be killed with a gun. Good luck!
Tchia (90%) 🙋♀️
One of the best open world games of this year and of any year: Tchia is "an enchanting world filled with adventure, excitement, beauty, physics-driven fun," Chris said in his glowing review.
Pizza Tower (90%) 🙋♀️💻🎮
"Play as Peppino Spaghetti, the supersonic Italian middle-aged man" in this ode to Wario Land that's better than Wario Land.
Vampire Survivors (87%) 🙋♀️💻
The best value on Steam: This is a $5 bullet hell roguelike that would run on a toaster and is hard enough to stop playing that you might want a copy for your toaster. Pick it up on sale and the entertainment to cost ratio gets even more absurdly favorable.
More great PC games
These games aren't all piping hot out of the oven, but some things get better with age. They're the cream of the crop on PC, either scoring 80%+ in a review, winning one of our GOTY awards, or appearing on our list of the Top 100 PC games. If you just want a damn fine PC game from the past several years, check these out.
- Honkai: Star Rail (90%) 🙋♀️🙋♀️: The new RPG from the Genshin Impact studio.
- Dwarf Fortress (84%) 🙋♀️💻 : The simulation classic now has, get this, graphics.
- Pentiment (88%) 🙋♀️💻: A great, narrative-focused murder mystery set in the 1500s.
Marvel's Midnight Suns (88%) 🙋♀️: A deckbuilding tactics game and a superhero friendship simulator.
- The Case of the Golden Idol (89%)🙋♀️:💻 Challenging detective puzzles with a fascinating story.
- Elden Ring (90%) 🎮🙋♀️🙋♀️: Surprise, surprise: This open world fantasy gauntlet from Dark Souls creator FromSoftware is brilliant.
- Immortality (95%) 🙋♀️💻: Her Story director Sam Barlow's latest video mystery is his best yet.
- Teardown (90%) 🙋♀️: A physics-based destruction engine that would've been fun even if it weren't also a genius puzzle game.
- Grounded (90%) 🙋♀️🙋♀️: A survival game that doesn't forget that games are supposed to be fun.
- Disco Elysium (92%) 🙋♀️💻: Our 2019 Game of the Year and #1 best PC game for two years running.
- Crusader Kings 3 (94%) 🙋♀️🙋♀️💻: The king is dead, long live the king!
- Hitman 3 (90%) 🙋♀️: The art of assassination, polished as finely as Agent 47's head.
- Slay the Spire (92%) 🙋♀️💻: The deckbuilding roguelike all others aspire to beat.
- Minecraft (96%) 💻🙋♀️🙋♀️: Build anything you can imagine, as long as it's made of cubes.
- The Witcher 3 (92%) 🙋♀️: Still one of our all time favorite RPGs.
- Total War: Warhammer 3 (90%) 🙋♀️🙋♀️: A brilliant final act with the series' most inventive and unusual factions yet.
- Strange Horticulture (90%) 🙋♀️💻: A beautiful and engrossing detective game packed with mysteries, puzzles, plants, and intrigue.
- Forza Horizon 5 (90%) 🙋♀️🙋♀️🎮: Even a marginal improvement on the best racing series around is worth celebrating.
- Wildermyth (90%) 🙋♀️🙋♀️💻: Narrative design as genetic engineering, it will live in your head like an imaginary friend.
The best competitive multiplayer games right now
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (83%) 🙋♀️🙋♀️
Infinity Ward has again set the bar for gun design in Call of Duty. There's plenty to complain about (the crashes, for one thing), but a lot of changes that we find fun, both in Modern Warfare 2 proper and its free-to-play companion game, Warzone 2.0 (especially DMZ, the extraction mode).
Apex Legends (93%) 🆓🙋♀️🙋♀️
One of our favorite current battle royale games. The map is fantastic, the 'ping' communication system is something every FPS should have from here on, the guns and movement are great fun (no wallrunning, but sliding down hills feels great).
Rainbow Six Siege (90%) 🆓🙋♀️🙋♀️
Siege might lack the sharp hit detection and purity of CS:GO, but it's a more accessible and modern FPS that rewards clever timing and coordinated teamwork as much as aim.
The best PC games by genre
Find our selection of the best PC games just a bit too broad? Perhaps you know you're after a gripping story, or an intense racer, or the kind of sim you can spend a whole weekend playing like a second job. Our genre lists have curated recommendations for RPGs, racing, strategy, and more. Check 'em out: