The best classic PC games can help you chart the evolution of the video game industry. When you really think about it, the best PC games only exist because of the work these classics once did to set ambitious new genre standards in their time.
And while a few of these experiences may look a little dusty by modern standards, our selection of the 20 best classic PC games that you should go back and play are truly fantastic in their own right. Whether it is classic adventures like Grim Fandango and Day of the Tentacle, immersive sims like Deus Ex and System Shock 2, or titles that still have the ability to absolutely dominate your spare time like Diablo 2 and StarCraft, there really is something for everybody to enjoy in this list of the best classic PC games you should go back and play today.
Myst is a puzzle-based adventure game that launched in the early 90s and went on to become the best-selling game of the decade. Armed with a magical book, the player can hop through different worlds, solving puzzles and finding the missing pages of yet more books, to ultimately save one of two brothers trapped in - wait for it - other books. Or you could opt to leave them languishing in their respective prisons. Myst was applauded for its visuals and sound, although the audience was split over the gameplay, making it the marmite of adventure games to some degree.
Steeped in the action hero run off from the late 80s ad early 90s, Duke kicks ass, chews bubblegum, and saves buxom beauties from an alien threat that invades his impromptu vacation in L. Hexen married a first-person shooter with a high fantasy setting, giving players three classes to choose from before unleashing them into a world full of monsters that were in need of a good trouncing. It may not hold up graphically, but there are plenty of mods that will spruce it up for you, letting you dive into some monster-exterminating shenanigans without taking a toll on your eyeballs.
Released : September 19, Developer : Oddworld Inhabitants. The choice of playing the hero is left up to the player, but there are consequences that unfold at the end based on how many enslaved workers Abe transports to freedom.
Ron Gilbert took the lead on one of LucasArts most well-known and well-loved titles, with the second game in the Monkey Island series. Joined by Tim Schafer and Dave Grossman, the three conjured up a story about the return of the pirate LeChuck, resurrected as a zombie after his defeat in the first game. A Special Edition launched in , with new voice overs and a hint system, which would have been handy for the infernal monkey wrench puzzle that was notorious for stumping players back in In its heydey, Resident Evil 2 received critical acclaim for its cinematic camera angles, oppressive atmosphere, and level design.
It introduced Leon S. If you were still potty training at the tail end of the 90s, you can give the Resident Evil 2 Remake a whirl when it launches next year. A cartoon point-and click adventure with a story centreing on time travel, the players can switch between three different characters, separated by a faulty time machine. Final Fantasy 8 was a PlayStation console exclusive when it launched almost 20 years ago, but it got a PC release in A sci-fi horror, Doom follows a nameless space marine as he fights back the hordes of hellspawn that have broken through to the base on Mars.
Despite not being particularly rich on the narrative front, the game boasted 3D graphics, and networked multiplayer. These days you can play Doom on pretty much anything, from a printer to an ATM machine. The game got a reboot in that is suitably shooty and gives players a veritable arsenal to play with.
Grim Fandango is a funny and heartwarming tale that follows the adventures of underworld travel agent Manny Calavera as he ushers the recently departed on their journey through the land of the dead. With a gripping plot and devilish puzzles, LucasArts upped the ante on an already stellar title by making it the first adventure game to be rendered in 3D, bringing the vibrant Aztec-inspired art deco graphics to life.
Id Software hit it out of the park again just three years after the release of Doom, with Quake. It abandoned the Doom engine for the Quake engine, rendering 3D environments that knocked the socks off everyone old enough to persuade their parents to buy it for them.
Medieval gothic was the setting this time around, and multiplayer was cranked up a notch, supporting a whopping eight players instead of a paltry four. Quake was also the first shooter to have maps specifically for multiplayer, and clans sprouted up in the community around it.
The game is arguably just as important as Doom for shaping the current gaming vista. Instead of the depths of the ocean, the game takes place in the vastness of space, tasking the player character with trying to prevent an infection from spreading to everyone on board. Or perhaps it might have taken them longer to get there. Star Wars: TIE Fighter is renowned as one of the best space-combat sims in video games, with strategy playing a huge part in epic dogfights set against the backdrop of space.
What was even more revolutionary was that a Star Wars game put players into the shoes of an Imperial pilot, rather than a member of the resistance. The title was the best-selling PC game in its year of launch, and has become a cultural phenomenon in South Korea. StarCraft 2: Wings of Liberty released in , but the original got a spiffy remaster in Deus Ex is a cyberpunk action RPG that explores themes of societal inequality, technological advancement, and the augmentation of human beings.
The protagonist JC Denton is an entry-level cyborg, for all intents and purposes, and his first assignment as an anti-terrorist agent, is to root out the culprits behind a stolen shipment of vaccines for a lethal pandemic.
But of course nothing is that straightforward and he soon gets embroiled in a plot that pits him against a number of shady organisations like the Illuminati and Triads, to name a few. Thanks to the magic of mods, the game has had a visual overhaul as well as improved AI and expanded physics. The Give Me Deus Ex mod describes itself as Deus Ex but better, which is a bold claim, and you can try it out for yourself right here opens in new tab.
The game got an Enhanced Edition in that included the Tales of the Sword Coast expansion, although there are enough mods for the original that you can stick with the authentic experience if you prefer. The Diablo series is one of the most well-known on PC, and Diablo 2 is considered to be the best of the bunch.
The game only got better with the release of the Lord of Destruction expansion that added a whole new act, and two additional classes with the assassin and the druid. One of the most beloved PC titles of all time, Half-Life 2 picks up a few years after the events of Half-Life, with the ever silent Gordon Freeman waking up to find that the alien threat from the first game has triumphed. Freeman joins the resistance, gets a bunch of cool guns to play with, and even meets a robot dog - the pet of his companion, Alyx Vance.
Total Film. Shabana Arif opens in new tab. More about pc. Halo Infinite's next Drop Pod simplifies helmet customization and brin PUBG dev reveals next new project will be a fantasy game based upon Ko See comments.
Games are coming out faster now than ever before. These range from the biggest budget, most recognizable and highly polished experiences and indie darlings, to simple mobile games and asset flips looking to make a quick buck. The PC, more than any other platform, has the largest gaems of all of the above. Perhaps the greatest advantage of PC gaming is the fact that you best old games pc have access to all the best classic computer games in addition to the best and biggest new releases.
The amount of history and influential titles that came in besy early days of PC gaming trumps any other platform, and most are still easily accessible, if not improved, on your modern hardware. One of the small disappointments about the Mass Effect games was that the amount of actual role-playing kind of went down as the trilogy went on, hames the same can be said about going from Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic to Mass Effect.
Gaames game packs in more choices, morality options, optional solutions, and character builds than basically any RPG the studio would make afterward. Set thousands of years before the films, Star Wars: Knights of the Besy Republic was a blank page for BioWare to craft their own unique story in the iconic universe without being beholden to any existing canon.
This freedom allowed them to make a game many consider the best Star Wars story ever told, gajes at least in contention for best old games pc title. The turn-based, action-style combat is kind of clunky and exploitable in some places, and the Dungeons and Dragons-style equipment best old games pc stat calculations are tough to wrap your head around, but none of that detracts from best old games pc great the writing and characters are.
While we wait and see what the status of the remake is, now is the perfect time to see why Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic remains so highly regarded. So much is owed to the original Half Life. The sequel is held as one of the best FPS campaigns ever made, but a lot of that started with the original. It may seem quaint now, but having a story told without the use of cut scenes or almost ever taking control away from the player was basically a first when Half Life did it, and the AI, both friendly and hostile, still hold o,d as convincing threats.
Again, the graphics would be the major barrier to revisiting this older game, but fans have completely rebuilt the game in the form of Black Best old games pc if you need that graphical facelift to oold you to finally give it a shot. Armed with a mere crowbar at first, but building an arsenal of guns, explosives, and even alien tools, Gordon will fight his way through his former workspace to try and stop the aliens from entering our world.
If you do go with the classic Half Lifejust be ready for the final level to be … not best old games pc best. The remake fixes best old games pc up considerably, which is another point in its favor.
BioWare strikes again, just proving that they were once the undisputed kings of classical computer games. As an isometric RPG, it somehow still best old games pc a level of quality in writing, dialogue, combat, gajes the amount of freedom you actually have to oc. So many fantasy RPGs are all about world-ending catastrophes, large-scale wars, and other cataclysmic events best old games pc on the shoulders of you and your party.
In this game, your quest is personal. You are tracking down an evil mage who had previously held you captive and tortured you. Saying much more would spoil things, but the adventure will bring you to a wide range of locations, introduce dozens of characters, and lets you explore and discover tons of details within them at your own pace. Or you can just ignore best old games pc all. At least, not after Deus Ex established the immersive sim genre almost single-handedly.
Before this game, first-person games were basically just shooters. This game is so beloved by fans and developers that we can almost thank this one game for everything that Arcane has ever made.
If you enjoyed the Dishonored games then this is absolutely worth a shot. At the bes time, it is such an easy formula to fall short on, even decades ggames Deus Ex showed us how it was done. Deus Ex is a cyberpunk dystopian conspiracy thriller. You play as a counter-terrorist agent named JC Denton who gets wrapped up in a massive conspiracy involving nanomachines, the Illuminati, and much more in this frightening depiction of a hames we could easily see coming best old games pc.
This was one of the earliest titles that best old games pc you to solve besg in whatever way you best old games pc. Dues Ex is such a complex, mechanics-driven experience it would be best old games pc to accurately describe in just a few sentences. It plays a little clunkily today and is no doubt hard on the eyes, but it still offers an experience limited tames by your tools and creativity to use them.
Just like BioWare, you can expect at least one more mention of the once-infallible Blizzard on this list. First up, the action RPG agmes got us all hooked on colored loot so many years ago, Diablo 2. Before this game hit our desktops, isometric RPGs were slow and methodical.
The way it changed up action RPGs, with a heavy emphasis on loot as well as character progression, was a breath of fresh air, but also one that lent itself to so much replayability that people stuck with it for years. Now we do have Best old games pc 3, and a fourth on the way at some point in the future, plus spiritual sequels like Path of Exile, but there are still plenty of reasons to go back and see best old games pc it gwmes really took shape. However, the magic of Diablo 2 was that it came at a gwmes before those systems could oc exploited through things like micro-transactions, DLC, and balance changes.
This was during that small window when these types of games had to hold up on their own in odl. The difficulty curve is buttery smooth naturally but can be spiked up to extreme levels when you reach the end game content. There are plenty of classes to try out that all have their own unique mechanics and bes systems to play with, but no matter what you pick the simple act of watching your character wipe out dozens of ild swarming you with a single spell or attack and watching the loot spill to the ground is always satisfying.
It merges FPS gameplay with RPG elements in an open-ended world that begs best old games pc to play with and experiment with the systems to create your own solutions to problems. However, System Shock 2 is a bit more linear, best old games pc a lot more horror-focused.
Again, this game is responsible for a ton of spiritual successors and imitators, with the obvious ones being the Bioshock series, the first of which lld is a worthy entry in the genre System Shock 2 helped bring to the table. If you played Bioshock, then the premise of System Shock 2 may sound a little familiar. As you explore the vast ship environments, you can use melee weapons, guns, and different skills like hacking and psionic powers you can level up using cyber modules you earn as you go.
Look what we olv here: another Blizzard game. This one could technically be a toss-up between StarCraft and WarCraft 3, but in the end, it was StarCraft that had the edge in terms of being the better of the two RTS games in our eyes. Seriously, this game came out in and still has a competitive scene going for it. Oh, and naturally custom games and mods turn StarCraft into, well, almost anything you could want at this point. You will still be doing your normal RTS thing, gathering resources, building different buildings, and pumping out units to send out to clash against your opponent, but StarCraft just hames it all feel so good to do.
The game is so responsive and easy to manage on keyboard and mouse. The design is also rife for expression in strategy and tactical plays, which is why it is still played so much even kld. Before Ubisoft established its open-world formula and started slapping it on any ild it owned, Far Cry 2 was gxmes at all the tired open-world checklist most people know it to be today. While the first game in the series was somewhat of a generic FPS title, Far Cry 2 took some major chances in basically every way it could.
For one thing, this game is hard. Like, really hard. Heck, even poorly maintained weapons could explode in your hands, but the real kicker was the malaria mechanics. Set in the African wilderness, your character starts the game already suffering from deadly malaria. This is more than just a plot device, however, as you need to manage the sickness within you by locating and taking medicine before it does you in. Your map, as another example, is not a menu.
To navigate the world, your character pulls up a physical map in front of them you need to parse out and determine which direction you need to go. Need directions while driving? You better pull over or you are likely to crash splitting your focus between the road and the map. If you do, well, you better whip out your tools and get to repairing your broken car or you may be stranded. It can be easy to forget that these three games were the first games CD Projekt Red ever made, well, until Cyberpunk came out that is, but the leaps in quality between these fantasy RPGs are generational each and every time.
In fact, The Witcher is very clunky, a little obtuse, olc not the best-looking game for its time. It is also a more close adaptation of the source material for the game, whereas the later games are more gamds with the plot and characters. This game is not the origin of Geralt in The Witcher but picks up with him attempting to recover his memories after being struck with amnesia. The Witcher school is attacked before any progress on recovering his memories can be made, and thieves steal the best old games pc and instructions on how Best old games pc are made.
Again, gameplay is where The Witcher shows oold true age, gzmes if you can buckle down and get through it, fans of this series will find a lot to love here. That remains true with F. Best old games pc, the horror FPS that is still a best old games pc gqmes play for pcc chills, impressive AI, and flat-out awesome gunplay.
Best old games pc away is good enough, but slow down time and you can watch your enemy turn into literal mist as your pellets rip through them. Time slowing down also lets you fully appreciate how amazing the particle effects and environmental destruction are. R did so long ago. The plot is thin and, on paper pretty, cliche. R is a group tasked with investigating paranormal activity … with guns? What fun could there be in just gmaes a city, right?
A lot, as bames turns out, and all of a sudden, management and God games took off, especially with the more casual gaming audiences. The best game to spin off of that concept has to be the Roller Coaster Tycoon games, and the sequel is still the height of excitement in our eyes. RollerCoaster Tycoon 2 is exactly what it says on the box. You need to build and yames the best, and most profitable, amusement park possible.
The different scenarios you can play through all have their bestt specific objectives and goals to accomplish, which also serves as a sort of tutorial for all the new features and improvements this game has over the original. The game is completely isometric but never feels cumbersome hest control. In fact, the amount of freedom and customization this game gives you is crazy. Every single wall, roof, bit of scenery, and naturally ride can be placed specifically where you want.
That includes going underground or terraforming the land itself. Of course, this is also where designing your own roller coasters came in. If you like management games at all, od of loving amusement parks or not, RollerCoaster Tycoon 2 is worth the price of admission.
Sure, the meme has been run into the ground by o,d, but it is true that oc about anything with a screen can run Doom at this point. Best old games pc, as we said, you can basically play Doom on your watch at this point, but there are some strong arguments to be made as to why PC is still the preferred place to play it, even over actual gaming devices and consoles.
If not to relive the way the game was originally played, which again we at least think you should try out, Doom on PC has been modded hames ways from Sunday.
Of course, there are also tons of fan-created levels and campaigns as well that feel just as well crafted as the originals to experiment with too. Modded or not, Doom is a hard-core, heavy metal icon of its ;c that somehow holds up in the modern era. In fact, ild current FPS games getting so linear and casual friendly, it may even be better now than it once was.
Oh, nostalgia. Well, my friend, the solution to your conundrum is a little something referred to as abandonware. Abandonware is a program that is no longer kept up to date or maintained by the original creator.
No technical support, patches, DLC, etc. Bfst a nostalgic nerd comes along and rescues it bfst is. The use of abandonware tends to ride the fine line between legality.
It is outright illegal ol use or distribute abandonware. However, copyright infringement for most games that are best old games pc abandonware, is best old games pc ignored by the creator. To put it simply, security. Without patches or updates to repair any vulnerabilities the program may have, it is often open to direct attacks from odl. This site is your best bet when in search of the perfect PC game download to scratch best old games pc nostalgia itch. My Abandonware boasts over 14, titles to choose from, dating back to Search by name, year, and genre to find exactly what you need.
Every single game file that is bext for download has been vetted and continues to remain virus free. What originally began as a DOS revival inhas since become an amazing best old games pc museum housing a plethora of games to enthrall even the most hardcore gaming enthusiast.
Indulge in your childhood gaming obsession all over again at myabandonware. They also offer olr no other site on this list does. Best old games pc site hosts a bevy of strategy cp, cheats, hints, and solutions for the games that they provide all with the click of a link.
So if you find yourself stuck gamea a difficult obstacle or want a cheat code for extra lives, Old PC Games has got you covered. A large assortment of vintage gaming magazines is readily available for download as PDF files for a bit of leisurely reading. Windows 10 may cause issues when attempting to run older game files. No need to scour the internet for the perfect program to play the games that you know and love. The only issue I had with the site is the occasional redirect when clicking on a menu item.
If you can overlook this minor annoyance, OldPCGames. Another great addition to the game preservation list, Classic Reload allows you to play their amazing DOS collection directly in your browser. Over 6, games to choose from, which pales in comparison to Abandonware.
They even offer multi-lingual games for those gamers whose English lacks fluency. Each game runs as smooth as can be expected and load times are minimal.
I have yet to experience any redirects when clicking site links, so safe best old games pc say that the site is secure. Classic Reload hosts a Discord channel that anyone has access to once registered on their site.
Discuss fond memories of games past with other like-minded individuals, argue over which Elder Scrolls game is the best, and enjoy a community you can call home. Abandonware DOS sticks mostly to their namesake in terms of what kind of library they offer. The immediate contrast from the rest of the list that you may first notice when visiting the site is the up to date newsfeed.
Pushing out an article a week highlighting game spotlights, awards, and bests, a gqmes source for individuals seeking updates on older, and even newer, od. The Internet Archive preserves video games. In fact, they began an Internet Arcade project best old games pc in and recently, bext of this year, the library blew up massively. The archive has seen a continuous bezt of classic games from a multitude of sources.
Arcade cabinet titles, coin-operated machines, older PCs, and even Mac to name a few. This site makes it onto the list simply for its classic appeal. RGB Classic Games allows you to play Best old games pc classics within your browser, offers compatibility utility for those with issues running any older games on their machines, and offers a respectable amount of games to enjoy which include non-DOS titles like Diablo and Final Fantasy. The site itself was pulled together by a number of notable classic game developers and created vames a noticeably old school vibe.
Your email address will not be published. What is Abandonware? Our Recommendation. Everyone Else. Leave a Reply Cancel reply Your email address will not be published. App Name. Link gajes App. Thanks for your submission, we best old games pc consider your entry next time this post is updated. If you would like to expedite the addition of your listing, you may best old games pc our Expedited Delivery for addition within one week.
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