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:
After five years on the Xbox, Halo Master Chief Collection has arrived on PC with Reach in tow – fixes, and all. It didn’t get off to the best start back then as everything was riddled with bugs – online multiplayer was hit particularly hard and rendered unplayable. Early signs, though, show that it’s enjoyed a smoother launch on PC, bringing another iconic shooter to players’ Steam storefronts. On top of all of that, there’s support for Halo: Reach mods, too.
Halo: Reach whisks you off to the year of 2552 to fight an alien race known as Covenant. You’ll find yourself in the Spartan suit of Noble Six, a member of an elite squad. Once you’re finished with the campaign, you can busy yourself with Halo’s multiplayer mode, from team-based objective games like Capture the Flag to the classic deathmatch mode, Slayer. Forge or Theatre Replay modes aren’t here quite yet, but they will be.
If you’re a fan of X-Com, then chances are this one has been on your radar for a while. Sure, the whole Phoenix Point Steam thing may have irked some people, but it looks like we’ll see Julian Gollop’s latest effort come to Valve’s storefront eventually.
The turn-based strategy game takes you forward to Earth in 2047, where you are in the midst of an alien invasion. The aliens themselves are Lovecraftian and, more importantly, on the verge of wiping out humanity. As the commander of a lone base, you’ll face a variety of strategic and tactical challenges as you try to turn the tide.
In his Phoenix Point review, Will Freeman praises the game for being “elegant, atmospheric, and energetic”. He also notes that Gollop’s love of board games is evident in the game, too, if that’s your scene.
“Certainly, if you’re genre devotee, a fan of Gollop’s back catalogue, or just want to see your board gaming tastes represented in digital form, Phoenix Point is well worth considering,” he says. “Its many strengths outweigh a scattering of rather abstract weaknesses, and those shortcomings only warrant scrutiny because of its tremendous legacy. Because if you call your project a ‘spiritual successor to X-Com’, you inevitably face comparison to not just a genre great, but one of the most celebrated games there is.”
How lovely it is to have another Star Wars game with a single-player story at its core. Respawn’s first foray to a galaxy far, far away takes place after the prequel trilogy of films and – more importantly – after the demise of the Jedi via Order 66. You’ll find yourself in the space boots of Cal Kestis, a Jedi padawan set adrift in the outer reaches of the solar system after escaping the Jedi purge.
Gameplay-wise, Respawn is adding its signature flair for movement with Sekiro-like combat that focuses on timing, parrying, and knocking bolts back at silly Stormtroopers. With some Metroidvania level design thrown in, think of Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order as a cross between Dark Souls and Uncharted.
The game is not without its faults, though. As Rich puts it in his Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order review, “Gameplay is solid from the start and gains depth, transforming you into a Jedi badass. Respawn has also nailed the Star Wars universe, for better (sights, sounds, and cinematic feel) and worse (cringey dialogue and vacuous plot)”.
If you’re still unsure if you’d like to make the purchase, we’ve put together a couple of guides on how long Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order is, and even wrangled up some tips for the boss fights. Heck, there’s even a Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order colors guide so you can get Samuel Jackson’s signature purple lightsaber.
Rockstar has a knack for capturing a moment in time. Grand Theft Auto: Vice City glows brighter than eighties Miami whereas San Andreas features all the low riders you’d find in nineties Los Angeles. In Red Dead Redemption 2, the studio’s love of western games, movies, and literature, like Blood Meridian, are on show.
While those games define the era of console on which they were released, they boast a special type of staying power on PC. It’s thanks mainly to the game’s dedicated player base. GTA Online is awash with roleplayers who simulate life, daredevils who just want to capture cool footage, and others who are happy to enjoy the game’s various modes, making it one of the true sandbox games on PC – and the same is true of RDR2.
That’s why we’re excited that Red Dead Redemption 2 has finally come to PC. As Sam puts it in his Red Dead Redemption 2 PC review, the story is a marvellous exploration of its characters. You play as Arthur Morgan, a cowboy with the skill to match his lofty reputation. Throughout the game, however, you become tested in various ways we won’t spoil. The game’s just released, but we’re excited to see what the game’s community gets up to as well, with RDR2 RP servers already well underway.
The comfort food of role-playing games, Obsidian’s space-faring epic shows signs of the studio’s history. From Fallout New Vegas’ meaningful dialogue choices to Star Wars Knight of the Old Republic 2’s depth of space exploration. In Dustin’s The Outer Worlds review, he applauds the moments of greatness, though he does find the experience a little too inconsistent on the whole.
Still, there’s plenty of depth here that you’ll likely love. The Outer Worlds perks and flaws system make character building a joy. Throw in some The Outer Worlds companions perks, too, and you’ll find that the best The Outer World builds are a web of various buffs and effects. Don’t be too daunted, though, as there are plenty of satisfying The Outer Worlds weapons to bring a build together.
Dare we say that Call of Duty: Modern Warfare’s campaign is up there with the greats? Jordan certainly argues that in his Call of Duty: Modern Warfare review. “It’s a story about the messiness of contemporary conflict, the vast grey gulf that exists between right and wrong, and the burden that operating within such vague boundaries places on soldiers,” he says. “Back in 2007 it was pretty obvious who the good guys were. This time it’s not so simple.”
Of course, the other big reason we’re here is for the multiplayer. Infinity Ward’s military-based shooter introduces plenty of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare weapons for you to coo over, and the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare gunsmith system gives you a dizzying amount of flexibility when adding attachments to your guns. Oh, and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare killstreaks are back, too, allowing for total domination of an enemy team or the means to stage an impressive comeback.
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.
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.
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.