Black Friday has become a great time to buy video games. Some of the best PC games of the past few years will be on sale, so it’s a great time to fill any gaps in your collection ahead of the holidays. Though many of the sales are focused on physical copies for consoles, there are good deals out there for PC players, too. If you’re trying to plan ahead, here are some thoughts on what kind of games you should expect to see on sale this year.
Early hits of 2019
Speaking broadly, the most exciting game deals on Black Friday tend to be on large AAA hits from earlier in the year that maybe aren’t flying off the proverbial shelf anymore. Last year, games like Monster Hunter World, Far Cry 5, and Shadow of the Tomb Raider all got big price cuts. Assuming retailers stick to the same strategy, it stands to reason that 2019’s first major releases, including the Resident Evil 2 remake, Metro: Exodus, and Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice all seem like strong candidates for the Black Friday sale spotlight.
Our guide to the best Black Friday deals coming in November.
There are also usually a few AAA games from the fall that get a substantial discount. Last year, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, Forza Horizon 4, and Call of Duty Black Ops 4 all hit $40. It’s harder to predict what recent games will get aggressive cuts, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see Borderlands 3, Ghost Recon Breakpoint, or even Control getting similar drops next month.
Sports games also always go on sale at Black Friday, even though most of them come out in September, so if you’ve been thinking about picking up NBA 2K20 or Madden NFL 20, I’d say hold off until November.
Lastly, you will almost certainly see deals on games that didn’t make as big an impact as their publishers would have hoped. If you still have some morbid curiosity about Anthem, I’m sure you’ll be able to get it for a song. (It’s already just $10 on Amazon). While I wouldn’t endorse that decision, games that quickly entered and exited the public consciousness like the new Samurai Shodown and A Plague Tale: Innocence may show up and are absolutely worth your time.
The usual suspects
The deeper well of Black Friday discounts will likely seem familiar to you if you scavenged the Steam Summer sale and other game discount events throughout the year. Look for deals on AAA games from 2018 and popular indies from the last two to three years. That makes for a lot of possibilities, but variety is the spice of life, right? If you've upgraded to one of the best graphics cards this year, that extra visual boost will give older games a new lease of life. Among older AAA games, long-tailed hits like Hitman 2 and Destiny 2 will probably go on sale to bring new players in. Among the smaller, download-only games, I’d look for games like Dead Cells and Frostpunk to make a return appearance in the Steam Autumn Sale, along with more recent games like Bloodstained, Rad, and Outer Wilds on the Epic Games Store.
If you’re open to something that doesn’t qualify as "recent," the biggest hits of yesteryear always tend to get big discounts around the holidays. Civilization VI, The Witcher 3, Skyrim and/or Fallout 4—you can expect to walk away with a lot of these games for $20 or less. Hell, Half-Life 2 was only two bucks on Steam last year. It’s never too late to play a classic.
Don’t forget about Steam
Speaking of which, when we talk about Black Friday most people automatically think about giant retailers like Best Buy and Amazon, but the PC gaming’s digital storefront also put on a show for their customers on shopping’s biggest week of the year. As we mentioned, Steam normally runs its annual Autumn sale around Black Friday, but many of last year’s best PC deals were on platforms like Fanatical and Origin.
I also have high hopes for deals from this year’s high-profile newcomers. This will be the Epic Game Store’s first Black Friday and I expect there will be savings to be had, given all the money they put into their "Epic Mega Sale" back in May. Likewise, Rockstar just released its own launcher, and I would be shocked if you didn’t see deep discounts on games from its back catalog like Grand Theft Auto 5 and the first Red Dead Redemption to get players downloading the platform.