Latest Top PC Games
“Computer games are the gateway to computer science”
Free-to-play gaming model is taking the industry by storm, that couldn’t be further from the truth. Nowadays there are hundreds of games you can download and start playing without paying a single cent, and some of them are just as polished, graphically impressive, detailed, and engrossing as some of the most well-known retail releases on the market. We know that there are plenty of you out there that are gaming on a budget, so to help you in your search for a free game we’ve put together this list of the best free PC games you can get.
Stable ReleasesPlanetside 2
Star Wars: The Old Republic
League of Legends
Team Fortress 2
Need for Speed World
Beta GamesThe following selection features titles that haven’t officially launched, but are currently in open or closed beta so you can still play them free of charge. They might still have a few bugs and glitches here and there, but in most cases the kinks are hardly noticeable.
World of Warplanes
Command and Conquer Free to Play
They might be slow and clunky in comparison to those in Hawken, but that doesn’t make the mechs in MechWarrior Online any less fun to romp around in. Hop into the cockpit of your own fully-customized bipedal robot and duke it out with other metal monstrosities in spectacular 8v8 matches. Like a few other free-t0-play titles set for official release later this year, this game is built with CryEngine 3 – so it’s on par with (or better than) a lot of currently available console games.
10 Best Video Games of 2012
2012 has been a remarkable year for gaming. Players have been challenged and entertained beyond expectations, and there were so many great gaming moments. It was hard to narrow down just 10 games that were absolutely worth our time and money.
10 favorites of 2012, and let us know what you'll be playing in 2013 in the comments section.
10. FTL: Faster Than Light
It feels good to put a Kickstarter-funded game on this list, because FTL: Faster Than Light has earned all its success. The two-man indie has combined a creative simulation game with solid, real-time combat. It's one of the most challenging and fun games of the year.
FTL puts players in charge of a starship fleeing a rebellion. Travel through randomly generated sectors, build up your crew and supplies and deliver important documents to Federation ships. The game’s simulation segments include thousands of well-written scenarios that will put your imagination to work.
The game is very challenging, which makes success even sweeter. You aren’t crushing your enemies; you’re squeaking by to fight another day. It reminds us that space is a cruel, unforgiving place.
FTL's graphics aren't advanced, but that makes the gameplay all the more memorable. Even when you eventually beat the game, you'll want to replay it for the rich fiction. We can only hope to see more creativity like this in 2013.
9. Spec Ops: The Line
It’s rare a shooter that takes on the emotional toll of war and the tough choices soldiers face in the field.
Spec Ops: The Line attempts to paint modern combat with a more realistic brush. You play the role of Capt. Martin Walker, a combat veteran sent to Dubai to help evacuate its citizens and U.S. military after the opulent city was hit by crippling dust storms. You hear your former commander’s voice over the radio, and drag your three-person squad along to try and save him. What happens to the soldiers in Dubai is terrifying, and you'll often question the main character’s judgment.
While the gameplay is a generic, polished shooter, the writing is spectacular. It's clear writer Walt Williams wanted players to feel the moral ambiguity around them. The twist at the end of this story is one of the best in gaming, and will make players question everything they spent hours working toward.
8. Hotline Miami
Hotline Miami feels like a drug-induced fugue -- a William Gibson fever dream. The pulsing music and oscillating visuals of this indie title make you feel like you’ve left this world and gone down an ultra-violent rabbit hole.
The game centers around taking out hits on a lot of people. But it's much more than just an ode to violence. As you travel deeper in this world, it makes you question why your character is taking out everyone around him based on requests from shadowy figures. Hotline Miami makes you feel like a pawn in a larger conspiracy thanks to subtle plot cues, an leaves you no choice but to trust the unnamed narrator’s interpretation of reality.
This ambitious and dark indie, heavily inspired by the 2011 film Drive, has many secrets to expose, and is so ambitious in its storytelling and solid in its gameplay that it easily warrants a spot on this list. When games don’t trust the player with all the information, and make bold design choices like making everything seem just a little too insane, they should be celebrated in their creativity.
A theme for 2012 has been a return to brutally challenging gameplay. We saw it in FTL, but another title that made us cry is Spelunky.
Spelunky is a 2D platformer created by Derek Yu. While it was released as a PC game in 2011, its XBLA release this summer brought many new players into the fold with updated graphics, new levels and cooperative play. It’s the modern incarnation of a Rougelike -- a genre marked by randomly-generated worlds, extremely challenging situations and permanent death.
Why play a game that's so punishing? Because the rewards are so great when you succeed. You must think about your every action, and weigh the consequences. It’s not a game to be rushed through, and you’ll learn that after the first 5, 10, 30 deaths. But once you've made it past the first world, you'll understand why this is such a gem.
It certainly helps that all this is wrapped in a charming package. The Xbox 360 updates to the game brought a cute, appealing art style to the characters and a snappy aesthetic for every randomly generated world. It’s fun to look at -- even when you’re dying for the 80th time.
6. Far Cry 3
Far Cry 3 seems like a 21st century action movie plot: cocky white kids looking for adventure in the South Pacific are captured and ransomed. Watching the main character, Jake -- a rich kid from Connecticut -- turn from a sniveling victim into a fighter is a transformation that is fun to take part in, and more realistic than the typical heroic badass tale.
But the game, which takes you into some of the most lush and vivid scenery of the year, is deeper than that. You’ll come to question if Jake has a reliable and honest point of view, if he’s really succeeding as much as he seems to be, or if he’s being manipulated by the island’s twisted inhabitants along the way. Of course, this is all happening in a world where you have to fight sharks and tigers, negotiate with natives and battle pirate armies. It’s action movie fun with a surprisingly deep plot, and a lot of moments that will make you feel a little sick inside.
While this title was a late contender -- it was released Dec. 7 -- it shone beyond early expectations. (Far Cry 2 is remembered as more of a cult hit.)Far Cry 3 will take you on a ride, then surprise you with its depth.
5. Halo 4
When it was announced that Bungie would no longer develop Halo games and departed from Microsoft studios, fans of the powerhouse shooter franchise were right to be concerned. Halo has been a staple of Xbox gaming. Thankfully, Microsoft’s new studio 343 Industries did not disappoint with Halo 4.
This game excels at what Halo has always done well: be a fantastic shooter. It feels great to play and satisfying to succeed. The game throws a variety of new challenges, weapons and vehicles at you, so combat always feels fresh. And it's all in one of the most beautiful games the Xbox 360 has ever seen.
Where 343 has really tried to improve Halo 4 is in the narrative. While some of the story pieces will be too obscure for the casual player, the real polish is between the interactions of the main characters. The stoic Master Chief must deal with his AI companion's memory loss. Chief’s age is also questioned in the game, specifically by other members of the UNSC, and it makes you realize how long this Spartan has been a one-man weapon. The fleshed-out characters may not be appreciated by all players, but it’s nice to see some new ideas injected into a solid franchise.
True choice is a hard thing to achieve in video games. Not many titles give players a true spectrum.
Dishonored’s brilliant game design does that. As you take control of Corvo, a wrongly-accused bodyguard to a royal family, you are given the choice of how to assassinate each of the corrupt targets working to seize power. Violence is always an option, but so is stealth, and exploring each chapter always reveals a non-violent third or fourth option. None of the choices are wrong, and that’s what makes the game fun and replayable. The gameplay itself is satisfying, and all the powers are fun and inventive -- like possessing rats to get closer to your enemies, or turning foes into dust when you incapacitate and kill them.
All of this choice is built into an interesting new fantasy world -- a mix of industrial steam-power, colonialism and dark magic. The well-written plot introduces you to interesting characters, and allows you to dip your toe or dive in to the lore, depending on your preference. Dishonored was an amazing new IP, and we would be lucky to explore more of the world it creates.
3. XCOM: Enemy Unknown
XCOM: Enemy Unknown, a game where you save the world from alien invaders, is probably one of the year’s biggest gambles. Turn-based strategy isn’t as big as it used to be, and XCOM is an an aging fan favorite franchise. A Triple-A quality reboot seemed risky for publisher 2K, but gamers are so lucky they pulled it off.
XCOM represents the deepest of strategy games. Not only do you have to manage your troops on the ground when you battle aliens, but you also have to manage your resources in your base and make sure you keep the world’s countries happy so they’ll continue to supply you with money and resources. It’s complex as hell, but manages to train both advanced players and strategy newbies on how to face an alien threat.
XCOM rewards players who strategize about every move. It gives players all the information they need to succeed, and punishes them for rash decisions. It’s also great for players seeking a real challenge with its “ironman mode,” where you can’t revert to a save if you botch a mission.
XCOM: Enemy Unknown's commercial success this holiday hopefully means more games like it will arrive. It will definitely make stronger players out of all of us.
Journey is a game that will leave you breathless.
Mere words cannot describe careening top speed through deserted ruins lit up by sunset, only to see your character’s ghostly silhouette skate by. The game is a visual symphony paired with a moving soundtrack (so good it wasnominated for a Grammy).
It might be because Journey is a game without language. Your desert wanderer can only “sing” to activate items and communicate with the unknown player who occasionally drops in. It’s somewhat isolating, but also perfectly demonstrates how much we can take in with non-verbal communication, and how games can tell interesting stories in new ways.
Journey lasts only three hours, but it leaves something behind. Once you’ve finished, you'll want to make the sojourn across the desert again. This creativity and beauty easily makes it one of the best games of the year.
1. The Walking Dead
The Walking Dead forces us all to make the hardest choice: The zombies are coming in, and you only have time to save one person. Who will it be?
This episodic point-and-click game proves so many things: that this relic of a genre can tell a good story, that games can force you to make hard choices, and games can make you cry. Just like the successful graphic novel and television show, this game proves that your biggest enemies during the zombie apocalypse can be your fellow survivors.
Each of the game’s five episodes progresses with many the decisions you make as you pilot the main character, Lee. Some of the decisions are small -- do you lie about your past? Do you ask someone about their family? Others have more gravity, like when you must decide whom to save in mere seconds. Almost every interaction colors how the game proceeds, and it’s not always in stark contrast. Often it will just affect how a character treats you later, but it always makes you stop to consider if your choice was correct.
The game is one of the most visceral experiences ever offered by the medium. Some of the most fascinating information can be gleaned from the statistics developer TellTale Games releases after each episode, detailing how players reacted to each of the key decisions. Often the numbers aren't a decisive split, proving the game is playing with the murkiest levels of moral ambiguity.
The Walking Dead has already snatched a number of "Game of the Year" awards, hopefully paving the way for more like it.
Top 10 Games on GAME SPOT
7. Dark Souls