What are the best new PC games 2019? Perhaps you have just been paid, bank account fat with virtual dosh, or you simply want to get caught up with the latest PC games because they are, well, new and shiny.
It is all well and good starting another daring round of PUBG, taking on a new 100-hour Football Manager save, or yet another The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim adventure but, as much as we love setting mammoths ablaze, there are plenty of the latest PC games that will more than supply your gaming fix. You don’t want to be the person who isn’t In The Know now, do you?
These days, new PC games pour onto Steam at a dizzying rate, making it impossible to keep up with them all. Thankfully, us kind folk at PCGamesN have separated the wheat from the chaff when it comes to recent PC releases, too. Below you will find the new PC games for which you should be saving your pennies.
The best new PC games of 2019 are:
Ubisoft’s latest open-world shooter is set on the fictional cluster of islands called Auroa. Playing as military ghost, Nomad – your plane is shot down and you’ll need to gear up, survive, and fight back against a former military group known as the Wolves. The island is owned by Skell Tech, a experimental drone-technology company – but the bad guys have taken over and it’s your job to bring them down and save the island’s inhabitants. Looting for weapons in Ghost Recon Breakpoint is key to building your gear score so you can progress the campaign and take down the Wolves and the evil corporation known as Sentinel.
Although our Ghost Recon Breakpoint review says Breakpoint “trips over itself by implementing mechanics from various genres, but never fully expands on their potential.” The review also highlights “Gunplay is gratifying for the most part, however, and guns deal a one-headshot kill to most enemies. Because of this I find myself cheerily revolving my loadout in order to test out my new toys on whichever group of hapless enemies is unlucky enough to be nearby – there are always enemies nearby.” It’s a fun co-op game to play with friends, where you’ll take on classes in Ghost Recon Breakpoint to swap between different playstyles as you conquer missions and save the day.
Ice-T has gotten himself into a spot of bother. Once the navigation AI of a mighty ship, an argument with the combat AI – also his ex – has led the burly voiced microchip to be stuffed into the body of a pink teddy bear. The rest of Borderlands 3 is equally stuffed with the same sort of daft moments the series has become known for. There’s a parody of The Room director Tommy Wiseau, and plenty of light quips at looter shooter rival Destiny in the game’s side-missions. If you’re a fan of the humour, there’s plenty more to love, but if you’re on the fence then this may not tip you over.
Going by the Borderlands 3 review round-up, though, critics agree that the gameplay nails the landing. The game’s four vault hunters all come with distinctive personalities and wonderfully upgradable skill trees – Zane is the love child of Han Solo and Colin Farrell, and Moze is a tiny soldier with a big ol’ mech. Boss melting Borderlands 3 builds are already showing up, and they’re a sight to behold. On a moment-to-moment basis, the gunplay feels finely tuned and satisfying, too. Games like Borderlands 3 are often best enjoyed with friends, but that’s not stopped Ali having a good time, thanks to Fl4k’s pet buds.
Borderlands 3 may not reinvent the series in any way, but it sends you across a satirised galaxy, looting and shooting as you go. If you loved that about the originals, this might be just what you need.
The latest entry in the Gears of War series has launched to wide array of opinions, and it seems to come down to one thing: familiarity. If you’ve grown to love Gears’ tight cover-shooter gameplay, then you’ll find a welcome dose of nostalgia here as you take your chainsaw gun to the skulls of Locust. If you were hoping for an evolution on the series formula, you’ll find yourself wanting more.
At least, that’s how our video producer Griff sees it. In his Gears 5 review, he explains that “It’s difficult to know where the series goes from here” as “flirtations with open-world game design, though at times visually beautiful, don’t change the experience in any meaningful way”.
Rounding off, Griff says that the “temporary abilities your AI companion grants you just seem to add to the cacophony. Combat is undoubtedly tight, levels look gorgeous, and scenarios rarely outstay their welcome, but in the end, the three-year wait demanded more. Reliably punchy combat and some well-intentioned new ideas don’t lift Gears 5 from its usual, albeit dependable, routine.”
If you like your action-adventure games with a paranormal twist then you ought to think about picking up Control. Remedy’s latest third-person shooter centres on the Federal Bureau of Control, a secret U.S. government agency interested in capturing and ensnaring phenomena which violate the laws of physics and reality. You play as its new director, Jesse Faden, and as ever your first day isn’t going great. An enemy known as Hiss has taken over and is corrupting reality in the Bureau’s headquarters. Luckily for us, though, that means cool, physics-busting powers like flying and hurling desks across eerie hallways.
We’re quite taken with Control, though we can’t wholly recommend the combat. In his Control review, Phil says “However you approach it, Control is a game about being taken on a journey of surprises, and being seduced by dark and beautiful images into a dream-like state. It is not – somewhat surprisingly from the studio that nailed third-person action so definitely in previous decades – a game about feeling sheer ecstasy when you pull the trigger or fire off abilities powerful enough to rearrange rooms and take out walls. If you’re prepared to put narrative and place first, this is undoubtedly one of 2019’s highlights so far, and a significant step forward in mature, Hollywood-style storytelling and characterisation.”
World of Warcraft Classic
Everyone has that game from their childhood. You know, the one they put too many hours into while they should have been studying for an exam. For many, it tends to be World of Warcraft. It leads to some enviable stories of what it was like to be there from the start. So whether you truly believe in the glory days of WoW or are a newcomer looking for that day one experience, the launch of WoW Classic is a pretty special time in PC gaming.
Related: the best MMORPGs on PC
The sprawling MMORPG is famed for its harmonious cycle of leveling up, pillaging loot, and slowly whittling away at a boss’ health for hours at a time. You don’t have to do it alone, though, and you can form a guild of buddies to keep you company. It can all feel overwhelming, but our WoW Classic guide for new players will keep you right if you get stuck.
We’re still playing through it ourselves, but WoW veteran Heather finds that the game still feels relevant today. In her WoW Classic review-in-progress, she mentions that the difficulty of WoW Classic leveling, as opposed to retail WoW, “forces your attention onto the leveling itself rather than gunning for the endgame”. If you’re not in a guild, it’ll take a few weeks to get to level 60, though we’re assured that’s a good thing.
Looking to slay some Nazis with a friend at your side? You ought to consider Wolfenstein: Youngblood, then. As Chris says in his Wolfenstein: Youngblood review, this is “one of the best shooter experiences of the year so far,” so long as play with a pal.
The game’s story is set in motion after series’ favourite BJ Blazkowicz mysteriously disappears, leaving his twin daughters, Soph and Jess, with the task of tracking him down in alt-history 1980s Paris. Quite handily, you don’t need a friend to own this game to play co-op with them. You can use a Buddy Pass If you have the deluxe version of the game and they have a free Bethesda account, plus you can matchmake with a random player online or go in with an AI companion.
While Wolfenstein’s full-throttle FPS shooter gunplay is kept intact, you’ll find several new things that keep this spin-off feeling fresh. You get something tonally different as you get a glimpse into the sisters’ relationship, and there are more elements of exploration, too. Wolfenstein: Youngblood’s map is split up into districts with secret passageways and pieces of lore to uncover. It should come as no surprise, perhaps, that Dishonored creator Arkane Studios helped out with development.
Age of Wonders: Planetfall
4X games are a bit of a commitment, but one we love making. We can easily accrue over 100 hours exploring, expanding, exploiting, and exterminating as any given empire. The start of Age of Wonders: Planetfall is a challenge as there are a lot of systems and mechanics to get to grips with. Stick with it, though, and you’ll be rewarded with a thoroughly engrossing experience.
Read more: See what upcoming PC games are coming soon
Triumph Studios’ latest strategy offering features all the tactical turn-based combat and in-depth empire building you may recognise from its predecessors. The big change this time, though, is an all-new, sci-fi setting. Out with the medieval fantasy-inspired visuals, in with alien planets and tentacled aggressors.
As Phil puts it in his Age of Wonders: Planetfall review, “Initially unwieldy but eventually engrossing, Age of Wonders’ latest entry translates its Civ-meets-XCOM formula brilliantly to a new sci-fi setting. Even if the elements of that sci-fi are a bit rote.”
Warhammer and Diablo is an enticing combination, and Warhammer: Chaosbane is a new PC game based on the ubiquitous franchise that delivers on exactly that. With up to three other players or on your demon-slaying tod, you will be beating back the Chaos hordes in a nightmarish world devoured by war and watching the blood-soaked numbers go up.
If you’re looking for something to tide you over ahead of the Diablo 4 release date, Chaosbane is for you, and you’ll probably also have a good idea of how its gameplay loop works. Once you’ve picked one of four different character classes, you’ll be fighting the various followers of the Chaos Gods and looting increasingly powerful gear with which to punish more demonic foes. As you’ll find in our Warhammer: Chaosbane review, this might be a co-op game with very clear inspirations, but the world of Warhammer is a devilishly fun place for it.
Total War: Three Kingdoms
If you’re hoping for an easy time of it in forging the next great ancient Chinese dynasty, think again. Each of the other major Generals – whether that’s Total War: Three Kingdoms’ Lü Bu, Cao Cao, or Yuan Shao – you’ll come up against are vying to do just the same thing, relentlessly hounding you for every gorgeous acre of the Three Kingdoms by blood, or vassalage.
If you’re time with the latest entry to Creative Assembly’s new PC game is anything like we experienced as part of our Total War: Three Kingdoms review, these hard-fought beefs will find themselves among your most memorable moments in the seminal series.NPC and enemy behaviour is inspired by the Chinese concept of dynamic inter-relationships, Guanxi. This brings out their idiosyncratic personality traits, motivations, likes, and dislikes. It turns out most of them really like killing you.
You choose from two game modes: Romance and Records. Romance gives generals superhuman strength – such as allowing Lü Bu to solo 2000 enemies at once – whereas the latter has a greater emphasis on realism and historical authenticity. With a new settings comes revamped game modes, so here’s what you need to know about the new Total War: Three Kingdoms diplomacy system, and how to steal characters in the game.
There you have it, the new PC games you should be playing right now. Now, we’ll admit, we were being a little facetious earlier: new PC games aren’t necessarily the cream of the personal computer crop. For that, you should swing by our list of the best old games for the classics and the best PC games of all time. While it’s important that you keep up with the new PC games we have listed, you are missing out on some of the most memorable gaming experiences around from previous years – and they’ll likely be a lot cheaper by now, too. We feel for your growing pile of shame.