PC gamers have got a pretty great thing going. Interesting, experimental indie games? Yup. Complex strategy simulations? Totally. The shiniest, prettiest versions of big-budget console games? They get a lot of those, too.

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Let’s say you’ve recently joined the ranks of the PC elite. Which games should you install? Start with the ones in the video above, which we’ve listed below.

There’s no shortage of ambition in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. Geralt of Rivia’s latest adventure is massive, a world you can get lost in for hours and still have plenty to do. There’s a ton for die-hard Witcher fans to enjoy, but you don’t need to have played a Witcher game to enjoy the heck out of this one. While many games these days have sprawling landscapes, The Witcher 3 is utterly dense. Every nook and cranny is filled with memorable characters, clever writing, and rewards for curious players. The main story is as thrilling as it is emotionally draining, and the side quests are actually worth doing. Since its release in 2015, The Witcher 3 has gotten a ton of free updates and improvements along with two terrific paid expansions, Hearts of Stone and Blood and Wine. The full experience is now even bigger, richer, and better than ever.

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A Good Match For: Open-world fans, especially those who enjoyed Skyrim but were disappointed by the combat. In The Witcher 3, fighting is nearly as enjoyable as exploration.

Not a Good Match For: People who value their time and social life, anyone who wants a game they can finish in a handful of hours.

Read our review.

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Watch it in action.

Study our tips for the game, and catch up on The Witcher lore.

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Purchase From: Steam | GOG | Amazon | Wal-Mart | Best Buy | Gamestop

The legendary turn-based strategy series changed things up significantly with Civilization V to make would-be world domination much more streamlined. Maps are easier to navigate, crucial information flows more easily and it’s the best-looking entry by far. Now with two terrific expansions in Gods & Kings and Brave New World, Civ V is meatier, more complex, and easier to recommend than ever.

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A Good Match for: Event planners. Like a wedding or a milestone birthday party, Civilization V’s all about knowing your guests and what they need to have a good time. Of course, those “guests” are rival nations and “a good time” is submitting to the power of your empire.

Not a Good Match For: Those who want the older Civ games. Civilization V is no incremental sequel, and the difference could alienate die-hard fans of the series.

Read our review of the latest expansion.

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Purchase from: Steam | Amazon | Wal-Mart | Best Buy | GameStop

In 2010, Square Enix launched Final Fantasy XIV Online, and it was just the worst—buggy, over-complicated, unfinished; a mess. The developers spent three years rebuilding the game from the ground up, and the end result is one of the finest massively multiplayer online role-playing games ever made. It’s everything fans love about Final Fantasy — lush artwork, strong story, gorgeous music — only bigger, all wrapped around a traditional MMO framework. It’s that Square Enix polish that sets it apart from its competitors, earning it a spot in this list.

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A Good Match For: Fans of fantasy role-playing video games looking to take the massively multiplayer plunge. The original Final Fantasy XIV was a tangled mess of conflicting ideas, when all players wanted was a standard MMO game with the familiar features of a Final Fantasy game. That’s exactly what A Realm Reborn is.

Not a Good Match For: Folks afraid of monthly subscriptions. Despite the MMORPG genere as a whole moving towards free-to-play payment models, Final Fantasy XIV stands firm by its monthly subscription plan.

Read our review.

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Purchase From: Amazon | Steam

You’re an elite supersoldier behind enemy lines. Your duties include: infiltrating enemy compounds, blowing up tanks, rescuing prisoners, and using advanced balloon technology to kidnap bears for your private zoo. That’s Metal Gear Solid V, a game that manages to brilliantly mix the hard-boiled and the ridiculous. With its impressive technology, meticulous design and huge open world, The Phantom Pain is easily one of the best stealth games ever made. It’s also the goofiest. There’s nothing else like it.

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A Good Match For: People who like stealth games, people who have wanted to try a Metal Gear game but have been turned off by the series’ reputation for impenetrable storytelling and endless cutscenes.

Not A Good Match For: Metal Gear fans hoping for a satisfying conclusion for the series. Despite being a massive game, The Phantom Pain feels narratively unfinished, and wanders through its second half before ending on an anticlimax.

Read our review.

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Watch it in action.

Study our tips for the game.

Purchase From: Amazon | Steam

You’re alone on an island, surrounded by puzzles. That’s The Witness, an extremely complicated game that is really very simple. Some of the puzzles are obvious: They’re on screens right in front of you, stacked in orderly rows. Other puzzles are much less easy to find. All of them will stymie and confound you, but over time you’ll gradually dismantle them until the game’s grand design is laid out in front of you like the workings of a finely crafted watch. Some games make you level up your character to access new areas; this one makes you level up yourself. There are few more satisfying feelings in gaming than when you finally realize the solution to a puzzle in The Witness. With a click, a new door opens.

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A Good Match For: Puzzle fiends, people who like a challenge, anyone who likedMyst and wants to see what a modern evolution would be like.

Not A Good Match For: Anyone wanting action, the easily frustrated, people who don’t like puzzles in games and generally just go look up the answers.

Read our review.

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Study our tips for the game.

Purchase From: Steam | Humble

It’s a fan-art generator. It’s pure cosplay fodder. It’s a meme machine, a water-cooler mainstay, and a cultural obsession. Overwatch is all of those things, but above all else it’s a finely tuned competitive video game that manages to encourage pitted competition and enthusiastic teamwork while ensuring everyone is having a good time.

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A Good Match For: Team Fortress 2 fans, people who liked banging action figures together as a kid, people who’ve wanted to try a competitive first-person shooter but haven’t yet found the right fit.

Not A Good Match For: Anyone who wants to play offline, or who is hoping for a substantial single-player story campaign. Overwatch is strictly multiplayer-only.

Watch it in action.

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Study our tips for the game.

Read our review.

Purchase From: Blizzard | Amazon | Best Buy | Wal-Mart | Gamestop

Just a man and a dog, looking to make a delivery. That’s how it all begins, anyway. But Kentucky Route Zero quickly becomes a mystical adventure through a land left behind by time, an odyssey in magical realism that feels grand and mysterious in a way that very, very few modern video games can muster. It’s not like anything you’ve ever played, and for that alone, you should play it.

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A Good Match For: Anyone looking for something different. Those who still believe there’s magic hidden somewhere off the interstate.

Not A Good Match For: Those looking for a bunch of complex game mechanics—Kentucky Route Zero is a point-and-click adventure game, and a fairly simple one at that. Also, not for those who want closure—the five-act series is only on act three, and there tends to be a long wait between chapters.

Watch a video about why the game is great.

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Purchase From: Amazon | Steam | Humble

Starcraft II is one of very few video games that can be called a national obsession. Elite players of Blizzard’s real-time strategy sequel can out-earn corporate middlemen in China or Korea, but the sci-fi conflict simulator’s most significant currency is the devotion from millions all over the world. That devotion is well-earned.

A Good Match for: Jugglers. Succeeding in StarCraft II means waging war on multiple fronts as you keep an eye on resources, deployment, defense and offense in skirmishes where you can be overrun in an instant.

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Not a Good Match For: Those hoping for a gentle introduction. New participants to the Starcraft multiplayer experience will get chewed up as they learn the strengths and weaknesses of the Zerg, Protoss and Terran factions.

Read our review of the second expansion, and of the new one.

Watch it in action.

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Purchase from: Blizzard | Amazon | Wal-Mart | Best Buy | GameStop

When it came out in 2014, Divinity: Original Sin already seemed almost too good to be true. Here we had a PC RPG that combined turn-based tactical combat, Ultima-style world simulation, and pen-and-paper co-op role-playing. It was great. A year later, Original Sin has been re-released in an Enhanced Edition with a number of major improvements. The game now works (well!) with controllers, and it’s now possible to play through the entire game in split-screen co-op. There are a bunch of new items and abilities, the story has been reworked, and the script is now fully voice-acted. One of the best CPRGs in recent memory got a whole lot better, and we finally added it to this list.

A Good Fit For: Fans of old-school RPGs like Ultima VII and Baldur’s Gate; people looking for a meaty RPG to play through with a friend; fans of turn-based tactics RPGs.

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Not A Good Fit For: Anyone looking for something relaxed and casual. Original Sin is a difficult, demanding game, and it requires you to manage a bunch of complicated RPG inventory, crafting, and magic systems.

Read our impressions of the base 2014 game.

Watch it in action.

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Study our tips for the game.

Purchase From: Steam | GOG

Crusader Kings II began, in 2012, as a very good game. It has become, following a seemingly endless run of expansions and updates, each one adding new challenges, scope and dimensions to an already exhaustive package, one of the most comprehensive and unique strategic experiences in all of video games.

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A Good Match For: History buffs, anyone who knows that kingdoms rise and fall on much more than the strength of their armies.

Not A Good Match For: Anyone looking for a simple game; Crusader Kings 2 is notoriously opaque and it’ll take you a while to wrap your head around it.

Watch it in action.

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Read our review.

Purchase From: Paradox | Steam | GOG

Undertale might look like a retro-style JRPG, but it’s unusually forward-thinking. As a human stuck in a world of monsters, you decide whether you want to win encounters with wanton violence or clever context-based interactions (talking, joking, petting, etc). Undertale keeps track of everything you do; it’s paying very close attention, and will often express that attention in surprising ways. Every life you take ultimately has consequences. Despite those grim trappings, Undertale can be an incredibly warm, fuzzy, and funny game. Whether you slaughter or befriend everyone (or walk a middle path), the writing in this game is top-tier, the soundtrack is second-to-none, and the plot hides a treasure trove of secrets that players still haven’t fully uncovered.

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A Good Match For: Lovers of smart video game stories, fans of games that subvert expectations, people who’ve ever felt even a single pang of loneliness.

Not A Good Match For: People who hate shoot-’em-ups and tough boss battles (Undertale’s combat system has elements of both), those who aren’t fond of reading dialogue, haters of lo-fi pixel art.

Read our review.

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Purchase From: Steam | GOG | Developer’s Site

XCOM 2 refines or overhauls almost every little thing about 2012’s XCOM: Enemy Unknown, a game that was already good enough to win Kotaku’s 2012 Game of the Year award. The game is meaner and faster than its predecessor; most missions have timers that push you forward and force you to take risks, and the new alien types will break even your most time-tested strategies. You’ll get more attached to your team of customizable soldiers than ever, which makes it all the harder to watch them die horribly in the field. Watch out for the snakes, man. The snakes are the worst.

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A Good Match For: Strategy fans, people who liked the first game, anyone who’s ever wanted to understand just how difficult it is to fight off an occupying force from the inside out.

Not A Good Match For: The easily frustrated, those looking for a simple game, anyone who rages at missing point-blank shots due to dice rolls.

Read our review, and a chat about what makes it all work so well.

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Watch it in action.

Study our tips for playing the game.

Purchase From: Steam | Amazon | Wal-Mart | Best Buy | Gamestop

The games on this list are all great PC games. But of all the platforms in our collection of The Bests, the PC has been around the longest and therefore has the largest back catalogue. There are decades of fantastic PC games to choose from, and if you own a PC you’d be remiss if you didn’t go through the classics and play the best ones. Thankfully, we’ve got two lists to help you out. In 2013 our readers helped us make an exhaustive megalist of the best classic PC games of all time. Then in 2015, we made our own list of the 24 best classic PC games.

How has this list changed? Read back through our update history:

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Update 6/24/2016: Crusader Kings II and Overwatch make it onto the list, while Total War: Shogun 2 and Portal 2 exit. Rest easy, Wheatley. You had a good run.

Update 2/22/2016: We’ve added XCOM 2 and The Witness and removed Heroes of the Storm and XCOM: Enemy Unknown.

Update 10/29/2015: The list gets another shake-up. We’ve added Metal Gear Solid V, Undertale, and Divinity: Original Sin: Enhanced Edition in the place of Counter-Strike GO, Minecraft, and Pillars of Eternity.

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Update 7/22/2015: We’ve shaken the list up with three new entries: Pillars of Eternity, The Witcher 3 and Heroes of the Storm take the place of Dragon Age: Inquisition, The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim and DOTA 2.

Update 11/25/2014: Fall 2014 brings with it a single swap: Dragon Age: Inquisition knocks off its predecessor Dragon Age: Origins. (Though you should still probably play Origins if you haven’t, because it’s really good.)

Update 8/6/2014: The list gets a shake-up: say goodbye to Half Life 2, Titanfall and Gone Home and hello to Dota 2, Counter-Strike: GO and Kentucky Route Zero. We’ve also reset the comments to allow for new debate and discussion.

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Update 4/10/14: We’ve called in an orbital drop and replaced Battlefield 3 with Titanfall.

Update 12/9/13: At the end of the year comes a sizable update to the PC bests list. Gone are FTL, The Witcher 2, Team Fortress 2 and Far Cry 3 and in their place are Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn, Dragon Age: Origins, Gone Home and Portal 2.

Update 07/24/13: It’s a long overdue update for the PC platform, with four games leaving and four coming onto the list. Skyrim—which was out when this list debuted—jumps onto the Bests because of the post-release addition of Steam Workshop, which lets you seamlessly access and install hundreds of the awesome mods available for the game. It’s joined by XCOM: Enemy Unknown, FTL and Far Cry 3. Wave good-bye to Amnesia: The Dark Descent, Dirt 2, Mass Effect 2 and Bejeweled 3.

Want more of the best games on each system? Check out our complete directory:

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The Best PC GamesThe Best PS4 GamesThe Best Xbox One GamesThe Best Wii U GamesThe Best 3DS GamesThe Best PS Vita GamesThe Best Xbox 360 GamesThe Best PS3 GamesThe Best Wii GamesThe Best iPhone GamesThe Best iPad GamesThe Best Android GamesThe Best PSP GamesThe Best Facebook GamesThe Best DS GamesThe Best Mac GamesThe Best Browser GamesThe Best PC Mods

Note: While all of these games are available through some digital service or other, if you buy any of them through the retail links in this post, our parent company may get a small share of the sale through the retailers’ affiliates program.