The best offline games on PC in 2022

No internet is no problem for these offline PC games and the rich worlds they have to offer - here's our collection of the best games to play offline

Looking for the best offline games? Online games are all well and good, but if you’re disconnected from the internet for any length of time, you’ll need the best offline PC games to help tide you over. Not every game lets you play offline, though.

Though you’d expect multiplayer games and MMO games to require an internet connection, there’s more to think about when preparing a stockpile of the best offline games. Some games require a license check before launching, for anti-piracy reasons – and although this doesn’t take long to perform, it means you can’t access the game without an internet connection. Unless you’re playing on GOG, there’s often no easy way to tell if a game you’re eyeing will actually let you play without being hooked up to the web.

Lucky for you, there’s no shortage of fun offline games to choose from, whether you’re a fan of classic RPG games or the biggest modern open world games. We’ve sorted through some of the top offline games for PC and narrowed it down to the best of the best, with something to suit nearly every taste. While you’ll naturally need an internet connection to purchase and download the games, you’re free to play them offline in their entirety.

The best offline games on PC are:

The best offline games: A man fighting a large shrouded figure in Elden Ring

Elden Ring

Elden Ring, FromSoftware’s latest and one of the best new games of the year, is entirely playable offline. The big concession in doing so, however, is that you don’t get to see messages from other players. But once you’ve perished because “try finger, but hole” was placed next to a ladder, you realise offline mode is a bigger blessing than anything the Erdtree could ever offer.

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Fromsoftware’s first open world game is beautiful and unforgiving in equal measure, a set of poignant reflections on misguided faith, the pursuit of power, and the nature of life and death. Best of all, it gives you a great deal of freedom on how to approach its dozens of challenging Elden Ring bosses, from using spirit summons and the best Elden Ring weapons to the time-honoured ‘tactical retreat’.

A man with a sniper rifle stands beneath a glowing neon sign in Hitman 3, one of the best online games

Hitman 3

Hitman 3 gives Agent 47 some of the most inventive missions of his career, from solving (read: committing) a murder mystery in England to gatecrashing a rave in Berlin to turn the tables on his would-be assassins.

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Hitman 3 features some of the most varied and challenging locations, with a dizzying array of solutions to every problem, and a devilish variety of problems to find, create, and escape from. Owners of Hitman and Hitman 2 have it better still, since you can import their levels and experience them with Hitman 3’s superior graphics engine.

A young hunter runs past an aggressive lizard in Monster Hunter Rise, one of the best offline games

Monster Hunter Rise 

Monster Hunter Rise reimagines what Monster Hunter can be, streamlining its more complex elements and adding new ways to master your favorite weapons. The result is, as our Monster Hunter Rise review explains, one of the most playable and enjoyable Monster Hunters, with adorable Palamute companions, smartly designed Wirebug skills, and an excellent mix of classic and new monsters to contend with.

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Sunbreak, the first major Monster Hunter Rise expansion, releases in summer 2022 and promises more ferocious monsters, new areas, armour, and stories, all set against the backdrop of what looks suspiciously like a setting out of Monster Hunter World. Unlike World, though, you don’t have to worry about always heading out with friends. Rise is also expertly balanced; you can complete even the toughest challenges alone in offline mode.

Casting a spell in a large fight in Divinity Original Sin 2, one of the best offline games

Divinity: Original Sin 2

If you like your RPGs in the style of tabletop games, then Larian’s Divinity: Original Sin 2 is made for you. From a distance, it’s a sweeping tale of high fantasy, religion, and politics, complete with fantastical enemies and a deep combat system that rewards creative thinkers (and those with a penchant for setting things on fire).

Perception check: Our list of the best DnD games on PC

The moment-to-moment action is much more personal, though, as you weave an intricate tale of hope, vengeance, ambition, and tragedy for your chosen character and anyone they come in contact with. Think carefully before making your choices. You never know whose life one seemingly offhand comment might ruin.

Speaking to a woman on a bridge in Trails in the Sky, one of the best offline games on PC

The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky

Nihon Falcom’s classic RPG might be pushing 20 soon, but it’s lost none of what makes it special. Trails in the Sky is part family story and part tale of political realism, set in a pacifist kingdom enjoying a fragile peace. Internal unrest threatens to bubble over into civil war as the nation’s former military leader – your father – disappears under mysterious circumstances.

Related: The best anime games on PC

Aside from the carefully planned plot, sparkling character writing, and unique blend of tactics and traditional turn-based RPG combat, what makes Trails in the Sky stand out is its rich world. The people you meet on your journey have their own stories that develop alongside, and sometimes intertwine with, your own.

Tracking the Norwegian invasion of England in Crusader Kings 3, one of the best offline games

Crusader Kings 3

Popes and princes are at your disposal in Crusader Kings 3, along with essentially everyone else. Nothing can stand in the way of your ambitions for world domination – except maybe yourself and those rather undesirable traits you saddled your poor ruler with.

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Whether you manoeuvre your dynasty to prominence with backhanded deals and espionage or let the marriage bed do your diplomacy for you, the paths to success are nearly endless and always unpredictable, thanks to the detailed personalities of everyone you come across. What’s more, Paradox’s latest update finally adds more same-sex relationship options.

A shootout in the streets in Disco Elysium, one of the best offline games on PC

Disco Elysium

Disco Elysium is widely considered one of the finest RPGs on PC, for good reason. It’s ostensibly a grim tale of emotional distress, of a downtrodden investigator solving a baffling crime and encountering people even more troubled than him. Underneath the bleakness lies a much more thoughtful and considered tale about the struggles people face in daily life.

Read more: The best detective games on PC

Your choices can lead to helping influence a neglected child down a new path, treating the locals to an (admittedly unwanted) spontaneous poetry reading – with mixed results – or even to perishing due to opening the mailbox. Disco Elysium has a streak of grim humour underlying almost everything, which is just one part of what makes the game’s writing among the best in the genre.

Protagonist Raz in Psychonauts 2, one of the best offline games on PC

Psychonauts 2

Double Fine’s follow up to the original Psychonauts might have been a long time coming, but it was worth the wait. Raz’s adventure continues in spectacular fashion, seeing him track down a mole in the Psychonauts and work towards reconciliation with his less-than-tolerant family – or he would be doing all this if the Psychonauts hadn’t made him a lowly intern. Modern technology lets Double Fine run rampant in its stage design.

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One moment you’re hurtling through a hospital-turned-casino, and the next, you’re helping a former Psychonaut work through his anxieties on a brutal cooking show hosted by goat puppets. Underneath the zaniness is a deeper and thoughtful message about mental health and acceptance. This is an adventure like no other and a worthy recipient of our PCGN award for best narrative of 2021.

A man in a blue shirt and cowboy hat looking pensive in the countryside in Red Dead Redemption 2, one of the best offline games

Red Dead Redemption 2

Nearly five years since it first released, Rockstar’s wild west sequel is just as engrossing and expertly designed as it ever was. The slow disintegration of Dutch’s outcast family unit juxtaposed against the backdrop of Gilded Age America makes for one of the most poignant narratives and settings in games, but if you’re just in it for the train heists and gunfights, there’s plenty of that too.

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Red Dead Redemption 2 is bursting with things to do, and while it doesn’t break the open world mould, its tasks and activities are much more rewarding than most.

A lady with a determined expression holds her hands over a masked man's arm in Tales of Aries, one of the best offline games on PC

Tales of Arise

If you’re looking for a flashier, more modern JRPG game, look no further than Tales of Arise. Bandai revitalized the long-running Tales of… series with Arise, nearly perfecting the combat system and doubling down on the game’s narrative with a more serious and incisive story.

Tales of Arise may look gorgeous, but there’s a dark heart of oppression and prejudice underneath that glittering surface, and Bandai explores its themes with a surprising level of balance and sensitivity. As Jason Coles wrote in our review, “Tales of Arise takes the foundations that have underpinned the series, but dials them up so everything feels better than before.”

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That concludes our list of the best offline games on PC – if you’ve got a friend over while your connection’s out, check our list of the best co-op games as many of them offer local co-op, too.