Achievements


Probably the best mystery game ever made, because Her Story is over when you feel you've found the answer or when you've discovered all the clips, depending on the type of player you are. As well as the intriguing story, where you tease out what happened to the Aurora—your massive ship—there is plenty of scope for setting your own tasks. The movement is so quick, precise and responsive I just want to squeeze it, even as it stabs me repeatedly in the heart.

THIS IS SOME TITLE


Destroyed Lifepod 12 outdated data. Entrance to broken-off wreck in the Kelp Forest 1. Entrance to broken-off wreck in the Safe Shallows 1. Entrance to broken-off wreck in the Safe Shallows 2. Entrance to broken-off wreck in the Grassy Plateaus 1. Entrance to broken-off wreck in the Mountains. Post-explosion tunnel entrance leading the Aurora's power generator room in latest versions this entrance has been blocked off.

Entrance to broken-off wreck in the Bulb Zone. Post-explosion doorway leading to the Aurora's power generator room. Degasi Seabase on Floating Island. Degasi Seabase in the Jellyshroom Cave. Degasi Seabase in the Deep Grand Reef. Disease Research Facility in the Lost River.

Alien Thermal Plant in the Lava Castle. Sparse Reef Alien Sanctuary. Northern Blood Kelp zone Alien Sanctuary. Lost River Alien Laboratory. Mushroom Forest Warp Gate Cache.

Crag Field Warp Gate Cache. Ghost Forest Warp Gate Cache. Bulb Zone Warp Gate Cache. Entrance to the Blood Kelp Caves 1. Entrance to the Blood Kelp Caves 2. Lower entrance to the caves inside the Giant Tree Mushroom 1. Upper entrance to the caves inside the Giant Tree Mushroom 1. Small cave at the bottom of the Giant Tree Mushroom. A chill, surprisingly hilarious party game I can play for hours. Everyone joins in on a smartphone and gets a phrase to draw on the touchscreen, then writes their own descriptions of everyone else's drawing to trick the crowd or simply get the most laughs.

It's like millennial Pictionary, so inevitably people draw a lot more dicks. The back-and-forth struggles of Nidhogg were already unpredictable, but bows, axes, swords, and daggers transform simple fencing standoffs into tense, sweaty battles for control.

Nidhogg 2 is an excellent way to graft friends to the couch. A see-sawing melee mess. No PC game produces more smile-yelling than Nidhogg 2. Stephen's Sausage Roll and I are on a break. I can't remember exactly why, but I know that I definitely rage-quit the sausage-grilling puzzler a while ago and haven't become sufficiently not angry to go back. That isn't a criticism, though; this is the puzzle game I recommend to the friends who want a real challenge.

It's turn-based MMA with walking tanks. Unlike XCOM 2, the durability and modular design of mechs makes for drawn out, back-and-forth exchanges that become micro-stories of attrition and mettle. You trade blows with an Atlas, weave and evade it, it cleaves off one of your body segments, you circle around, knock it down and KO it with a face stomp. I love BattleTech's degrees of failure. You might complete all objectives but lose your rare, damage-boosted PPC, put a pilot in a two-month coma, or have to spend every nickel you just earned fixing up your battered Highlander.

The campaign wrapped around BattleTech's granular combat is a bottomless well of procedurally generated missions with a heartwarming story of underdog regal revenge at its nucleus. Following some less comprehensive annual instalments, Football Manager gives us the most sophisticated soccer management simulation yet, where success is no longer determined by match performance alone. Piss off the wrong combination of players, and you'll risk a dressing room revolt.

Suck up to the most popular, and you'll isolate your fringe stars. You need to balance influence and social standings to prevent the beautiful game from turning ugly. I don't think many people can consciously identify a 'fast-moving rhythm action space beetle combat game with a heady metal album aesthetic' void in their lives. But it exists and Thumper can fix it. The dark, grungy synths and unusual time signatures create a fascinatingly ominous soundscape that draws you into the claustrophobic, reactive action.

Thumper offers a mesmerising blend of palpable dread and empowering mastery—at least it did for me until the later levels, which required a degree of dexterity I'm not sure I possess. That scarab scrapes down the interdimensional highway at the centre of Thumper with so much speed and ferocity that the game almost literally breaks apart by the end. Nod your head to dull the pain. The problem with simulators is that they're often badly designed, technically janky or both.

But Euro Truck Simulator 2 is neither of these things. This is a deep, polished, and immensely playable driving game set in a vast, mostly accurate replica of Europe. You can drive seamlessly between countries, and there's an understated beauty to the scenery that passes you by.

It's also incredibly atmospheric, especially at night or in the rain. There's no better game to play while listening to music or catching up on podcasts, and it's deeply customisable too, meaning you can make each road trip as realistic or accessible as you like, depending on how deep you want the simulation to be.

In many ways I prefer American Truck Simulator. That's not because I love weigh stations—they're fine, if that's your thing—but because America's vast, terrifying emptiness feels more isolated, more epic, and, dare I say, more romantic.

Euro Truck Simulator 2, on the other hand, is dense and busy, but also muted—it's altogether greyer and more moodily atmospheric. Both games are fantastic, and which one you prefer is likely a matter of which style of road trip speaks more to your personality. How many simulation games can you say that of?

It turns out being the captain of your own spaceship is stressful as hell, but you'll take part in some great stories along the way. FTL is a superior mix of roguelike and strategy.

While Into The Breach is taking its place in my life, this is still one of the best space-set games around. It can make for a great party game, too. Put someone in the driver's seat and let the crowd make choices. Suddenly half your ship is on fire and you've accidentally vented one of your crew into space.

This grim and unforgiving open world FPS never turns you into an invincible superhero. No matter how much gear and weaponry you scrounge from the irradiated exclusion zone, you're still mortal and fragile, alone in a terrifying world of mutants, monsters, and roaming factions of AI-controlled humans. This lends Stalker an unending tension and fills every encounter with dread. From start to finish, there's a sense that at any moment you could meet your unceremonious end.

People are making mods and maps for this game like it was released a year ago. But what really strikes me about Doom 2 is how fun it still is, and how different it feels from decades more advanced shooters. There's a purity in how it moves, how it sounds and the minimum frames of animation it takes to sell firing the super shotgun. Twenty years after its initial release it's still a real pleasure to revisit the film noir world of Manny Calavera, travel agent of the afterlife. Nowadays I play purely for the story so I keep online hints at hand for when progress stalls.

There's a long tail to Vermintide 2 if you're willing to stick with this four-player Left 4 Dead-alike set in the Warhammer universe. It looks prettier than the first game, offers more in-depth character progression, and has much better combat.

It feels really good to stab up a rat, and if that's not worth a spot on this list, I'd love to know what is. This spooky adventure game has a group of young friends inadvertently unlock a supernatural force on a haunted island.

The relationships and various tensions between all the characters feel very real, and the dialogue is funny and poignant. These characters feel like they could've been people I went to school with. The snappy, fun dialogue makes Oxenfree feel more theatrical than realistic, but that fits perfectly with the eerie mystery and interpersonal drama. I added Grey Alien's card-game-slash-Regency-romance to our Top discussion list, then reinstalled the game and spent three hours of the Top discussion playing this in the background.

I'm fighting the urge to play it again now instead of finishing this incredibly short paragraph about why it's good. The solitaire aspect is really strong, it's super easy to play just one more round, and the story is light but charming. Can I boot it up again? These ramshackle weapons carry you through a filthy, atmospheric corridor shooter set in the depths of the Moscow undercity.

The tunnels hide mutant creatures and nests of horrible spidery things, but the most dangerous enemies are the human clans trying to scrape out a living in the post-apocalypse. A beautiful and grim FPS that's refreshingly bleak for a modern triple-A game. The world building in Metro: Last Light is dazzling to me—the little snapshots of human civilisation that show how there are children in these underground settlements who never knew the world before it got into this bleak, decrepit state.

And the story features some unforgettable moments, such as an early flashback that shows—from the perspective of the pilots—how a passenger plane was destroyed in the nuclear blast. It commits to showing the horrors of what a nuclear war would do to the modern world, and I'd recommend it to absolutely anyone. Square Enix's from-the-ashes MMO enjoyed another stellar year following the release of Stormblood, a revolution-themed expansion that whisks players across the sea to Eastern-inspired worlds that add much richness to an already great story.

Though its endgame has become a predictable grind at this point, Final Fantasy 14 is still able to keep things exciting thanks to the steady pace of new bosses, dungeons, and raids to clear. Each one is just as memorable as the last thanks to a stunning soundtrack and beautiful world design.

Cosmo D's first-person jazz hotel exploration has you poking around a converted mansion and uncovering the secrets of its former owner, celebrated pianist, Peter Norwood. Musicality shapes the whole experience, warping the space and affecting the denizens.

As you dig around you'll also discover the game's sense of humour via visual gags and surreal chats with guests and visitors. Warband is what we so often clamour for: It's sandbox in the truest sense, and the feeling of loosing an arrow into a line of galloping cavalry still holds up.

You start with nothing: From such inauspicious beginnings, you're free to do just about anything. Hunt bandits, befriend lords, rob pretty much anyone. Or, if you don't fancy leading hundreds of soldiers, just go fight for prestige in the arena.

New challenges are constantly being thrown at you, forcing you to try new units and tactics, and the story isn't bad either. When you're done with all that, you can take your newfound skills online, which still has a huge and dedicated following. There's a bottomless pit of tips, tutorials, and strategies online, meaning new players have a decent chance of catching up.

Maybe a game like Stellaris will knock this classic spacebound 4X strategy game out of the Top , but not this year. It's hard to beat a game that's so smart and complete, and that can generate so much strategic intrigue with every campaign. The AI is so cunning that former PC Gamer staffer-turned-developer Tom Francis once wrote an entire book about one of his attempts to thwart it. Singleplayer games don't get much deeper than this.

There's an engrossing amount of depth to the management simulation of Prison Architect, where building a workshop for inmates to make license plates doesn't mean they'll just walk in and begin working. First they'll need training, which requires classrooms, which require instructors, who require work and class schedules and their own facilities.

Oh, and metal detectors to make sure the inmates don't smuggle out tools to use as weapons against guards or other inmates, or to tunnel under the walls of your prison.

It's not easy building and managing a small city where most of the population is plotting escape. I love it when things go to shit in management sims, and Prison Architect is enormously fun to watch and manage when disaster inevitably strikes.

A streak of black comedy runs through the game, and there's something darkly hilarious about a riot erupting—these cartoonish little characters shivving each other, starting fires and beating up guards. Something as simple as a fight in the canteen can be the flashpoint for a full-scale riot, and trying to suppress it safely and quickly is a real test of skill. But that doesn't mean you can't have some fun observing the chaos before rolling your sleeves up and stepping in to deal with it.

An adorable Ghibli-esque aesthetic—particularly the opening cutscene—gives way to a rock hard Metroidvania platformer. Your eyes are as likely to tear up with emotion as they are with absolute fury if you fail a boss one too many times. It looks like sugar but tastes like salt. Ori is not the moonlit animal paradise it appears to be at first glance. The art is absolutely gorgeous. It's a hazy, dreamlike world of artfully twisted overgrowth and spike pits.

The movement is so quick, precise and responsive I just want to squeeze it, even as it stabs me repeatedly in the heart. Approach with caution and keep some hankies and a swear jar within reach. A survival and crisis management sim about building and sustaining city in a frozen world. In addition to providing food, warmth, and shelter to your citizens, you have to provide them something much trickier: That's immensely difficult when people are starving, freezing, and working themselves to death under your direction, and the choices you face are grim ones that never leave you feeling like a hero, even when things work out.

Frostpunk is a game that asks two questions: Diablo 3 is still a stellar action RPG that has only become more generous year on year after its unsteady and controversial launch. The necromancer is a fantastic addition that calls back to Diablo 2 without nostalgically retreading the same ground. If you want to smash up thousands of monsters for gold and loot, there aren't many games that do it as well as Diablo 3.

A superb hack-and-slash game that rewards mastery with feeling like a badass. It's pretty much the first place I'd send anyone new to this genre of game that has its modern roots in Capcom's Devil May Cry series. This, from that game's creator, is funny, stylish and satisfying to learn. Its sequel, which Nintendo published, doesn't come close to matching the original.

The range of weapons here fits together perfectly. The fast-paced combat is yet to be bettered, and the world and story are equal parts stylish and absurd.

The rhythm combat in this game is so polished that I love it even when it's at its most stressful. You have to move on every beat or risk losing your cash multiplier, which means there's no downtime to plan your next move. Is a multiplier all that important, you ask? This would be a great roguelike in its own right, but it's almost unfair how cleverly the musical element is threaded through exploration and combat.

Try dungeon dancing to your own music for a new challenge. I bounced off Sunless Sea so hard when it first came out—I remember clunky combat and irritating resource grind as core objections. Returning to the game with the Zubmariner DLC I found myself well and truly suckered in—devoting hours to pottering away in the Unterzee, drinking in Failbetter's expert prose and luxuriating in the art style. Sunless Skies is shaping up to be another step forward so I'm singing Sunless Sea's praises now, lest seas be eclipsed by skies in the near future!

Baldur's Gate 2 is still a magnificent achievement. Few RPGs since have been as broad, deep or fully featured as this sprawling classic. It's a great party RPG too. Few modern games would be brave enough to implement a morality system that causes party members to fall out with you and leave the party—the closest you might get is Wrex's rebellion in Mass Effect.

After the slightly too long tutorial dungeon, Baldur's Gate II hits the ground running, setting you loose in the massive city of Athkatla to earn money to fund the next leg of your journey. A vast, beautiful mystery that's equal parts intriguing and relaxing, Fez is a puzzle-platformer that forgoes enemies and peril, instead offering a pleasant adventure about a strange world full of questions to answer.

At its most basic, you rotate between four 2D planes, shifting the world in order to create a path to the next door. But over the course of the game, you'll solve riddles, uncover secrets, and even decode languages. Fez is a tantalising puzzle box just waiting to be unlocked.

Take a journey around a steampunk-infused world as Passepartout, Phileas Fogg's indispensable assistant. Then, whether you succeed or fail, take the journey again and again, and see all the places and stories you missed the first time around. While it feels made for mobile, you should definitely pick it up on desktop if you've never played it.

This feels like the most PC-friendly Final Fantasy to me. Like the rest of the games in the series, it's a beautiful big RPG with a cast of characters that span from annoying Vaan to awesome Balthier. This entry is the only one with the excellent gambit tactics system, which lets you program your party's AI to blitz dungeons and bosses with satisfying efficiency.

You can fast-forward this version of the game, too, giving the combat the pace and catharsis it desperately needed back when it came out on PS2. This is the third game in Matthew Brown's hex-grid logic puzzler series, and it's the best of the bunch. The 'infinite' part of the title refers to the fact that it can generate infinite puzzles if you want to keep playing.

But the real joy, and the reason I keep replaying it, is the set which Brown has hand-crafted. The saddest spaceships in games must travel the galaxy looking for a new home in Relic's classic RTS. If you love brain-scrambling 3D battles then this is the only strategy game that really delivers. Deserts of Kharak is excellent too, but I'd sooner play a game bold enough to deploy Adagio for Strings in a scrap.

I have spent north of 2, hours in this game. You do not need to know how much money I have spent in this game.

But that investment, both temporal and financial, was because this MOBA continued to reward me. There's a rich esports scene, a daft and creative community, the ability for friendships to blossom and for groups of players to cross pollinate as friends of friends move in and out of your teammate invite list.

I only stop by occasionally now, but Valve continues to offer interesting updates. Turbo mode is my favourite addition in recent times, not least because it affords newbies a space where they can try characters out without as much pressure as a normal match.

It's a phenomenon I'd recommend trying to anyone who plays on PC, even if they bounce off it. That tension of landing in this world and seeing what plays out is an experience everyone should have.

Evan put it best last year, so allow me to repeat it here: I play PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds as a stealth game, moving carefully between cover, keeping out of sight, biding my time.

But the thrill here is that the 'guards' are real people, which makes sneaking under their noses even more exhilarating. This one has slipped down the list this year, largely because in recent times we've seen developers pick up the immersive sim baton and run with it—see entry number two in this list for the results. Deus Ex is still a classic, though. Even though the visuals, UI, dialogue and sound design seem more creaky each year, the scope for experimentation and emergent player-authored action is still impressive.

It's creaky for sure, but Deus Ex's freedom still feels remarkable, as does its level of respect for the player. But Deus Ex thrusts you into a paranoid world where everyone has an agenda and every command should be questioned. New Vegas is the best for reactive storytelling, Fallout 3 has my favourite side quests, and Fallout 4 feels the most refined when it comes to combat, presentation and world design.

Even if the choices towards the end didn't produce outcomes I was happy with, I loved journeying around that world with Nick Valentine and Piper. And taking on the role of pulp-style hero The Silver Shroud represents my favourite superhero experience in any game. There's nothing quite like Fallout's setting. Its cynical, post-apocalyptic, Atomic Age sci-fi is dripping with black humour and absurdity. I'm grateful that something so esoteric continues to get the big-budget treatment.

Fallout 4 lets you be a silent stealth killer who wears a giant suit of power armour—not because it makes sense within the world, but because it makes sense within the underlying systems. It's an anti-immersive sim, offering satisfying freedom in how you build your wasteland wanderer. A miserable office worker inherits a farm and starts a new life in the idyllic Stardew Valley. This Harvest Moon-inspired farming sim is pleasantly freeform and lets you live the way you want to, whether that's just lazily growing a few crops here and there, or starting a ruthlessly efficient mayonnaise empire.

Stardew Valley is everything I ever wanted out of Harvest Moon, but unchained from Nintendo's puritanical approach to content. It's obtuse, and it takes a lot of time and effort to become properly mixed up in the corporations that drive EVE Online's greatest dramas, but I have taken a lot of pleasure in hopping into a vessel and mining for a few hours, quietly turning in a small profit and enjoying the vibe of EVE's cosmos.

It looks beautiful stretched across two monitors, and if I do find myself yearning for the grand stories of war and betrayal, I can always read about them later in PC Gamer. While as a shooter it's far from best-in-class these days, exploring the different parts of this underwater world and learning its story is an experience no other game has matched for me. Rapture is still one of the most atmospheric settings on PC, letting you explore a bizarre, broken society in a state of fascinating decay.

Digital Extremes' cooperative loot shooter quietly became one of the best free-to-play games and people are only just now catching on. In the years since its rocky release, Warframe has grown into a deeply satisfying and complex online game with thousands of hours worth of quests to complete and gear to farm. It's an intimidating game for all the right reasons: The audio and combat camera effects deserve an award for how they make fights between illustrated paper characters feel like Eldritch kung fu.

Solving an Opus Magnum puzzle isn't satisfying the first time. You build an alchemy machine with tracks, rotating arms and flowchart instructions—producing gold from lead, for instance. Your sloppy contraption may look beautiful in motion, but how could you move on to the next challenge when your friend solved the same problem more elegantly?

That quest for perfection is deviously engrossing. Few puzzle games feel so good to finally master. You play as an immortal being with amnesia, trying to piece his past together. Think of any RPG convention and Torment will subvert or twist it in some fascinating way, and the characters who join your party along the way are truly strange. I vacillate between them, but even though I like Civ 6's city districts, Civilization 5 with all the expansions is still the evening destroyer I'd recommend.

I wish the series would reexamine its assumptions about the world and make more radical changes in the future, but for now, Civ 5 is still the standard bearer for turn-based empire building: I prefer Civ 6—it's shallow, but I need my p boardgames to look as pretty as possible, and the expressive, animated leaders of Civ 6 add a lot.

But the fact that there's still a debate between the two is an endorsement of Firaxis' approach to putting meaningful new spins on one of PC gaming's longest-standing, most celebrated genres.

In all the time I've played Civ 5, I've never actually won a game. And so it's a testament to just how compelling and accessible its strategy is that I keep coming back, trying new tactics and shaping my civilisation in new and interesting ways. It's the journey—taking my people from humble beginnings to advanced empires—that I really enjoy.

The destination ultimately isn't that important. This turn-based tactics game has you controlling a squad of superspies in missions to knock out guards and steal data before the alarms detect you.

I love Klei's angular art, and it's miraculous that the team were able to build such a tight and nuanced tactics game with procedurally generated offices. As with Into the Breach, Invisible, Inc. You can see their sight lines clearly and judge their intentions. Your main decisions come down to your use of power points to hack systems. You can disable alarms or unlock doors to access tantalisingly placed upgrade terminals. Do you grab your objective and flee before security arrives, or take a gamble for an upgrade that might make future missions a lot easier?

Pure co-op calamity with a deceptively cheerful art style. You will never yell "I need lettuce! So enjoyable to pick up, then appallingly difficult to master as you chase those three star ratings. If only I could take it less seriously—me and my partner had to stop playing because I was treating it like a part-time kitchen job.

It's like if the TV show Hell's Kitchen was a game—swearing and all. Terry Cavanagh of VVVVVV fame's twitchiest game, Super Hexagon makes you a triangle trapped in pulsing, multicoloured hexagons, dodging through gaps in spinning walls at high speed. It's the definition of easy to learn and bloody impossible to master. I used to think hexagons were fine. Maybe not as fun as parallelograms, which are basically drunk rectangles, but pretty good overall.

Now I've played Super Hexagon I hate them. They give me a rash. To hell with hexagons. Before writing this paragraph I fired up Super Hexagon for the first time in five years, and after only a few tries I was already pushing up near my best times. This is the kind of game that sears itself into your subconscious; burrowing deep down into your muscle memory just waiting for you to return.

As a shortform arcade game it's practically perfect—a pulsating, rotating, constantly shifting assault of shapes and sounds with an instant restart that has you back in the action before the voiceover can finish saying "game over". The facial animations really date BioWare games, but Mass Effect 2 is still the best at showing darker, more interesting sides to its dense sci-fi universe.

Maybe it's time for another trilogy replay. The greatest ensemble cast in RPG history. The idea of recruiting the galaxy's most notorious warriors and criminals is a brilliant excuse to gather up a motley crew of weird, flawed, interesting people, and I cared about all of them.

Hearthstone is in a funny spot. The arrival of a tournament mode later this year may do that, but despite an atypically diverse meta, I've felt my desire to grind the ladder wane. Regardless, for now Hearthstone remains peerless in terms of the quality and polish of the experience. GTA 5 is one of the most lavish singleplayer experiences you can have on PC, with impeccable production values, superb mission variety, and a wonderfully vibrant city.

It's massive, but I've finished it three times—that's how much I love being in Los Santos. For me, Michael is Rockstar's best protagonist: I change my mind about GTA Online every few months, but the fidelity of the world is unbeaten. I adore the original heists, and I've had a lot of fun playing the game with other people. I've seen those streets so many times now, though, and am desperate to play whatever comes next in the series.

Or, you know, they could bring Red Dead to PC. Whatever you think about GTA Online relationship status: The way they divide your team of four into smaller groups, each performing a specific task that slowly draws everyone together for a single, action packed finale is—when you successfully pull it off—tense, exciting and memorable.

GTA Online is a shop window, and few games let you observe other players' wares with such impact. Seeing that new car, aircraft or chopper hurtling towards you makes you want it—which makes grinding to get it less of a chore. It's Relic's best game and frankly still one of the best real-time strategy games ever made.

Jumping into a skirmish against the AI, it holds up today as well as it did at launch, which is a testament to the quality of the art and sound direction, and the success of Relic's squad-based take on unit control. The expansions are decent, but I still relish the purity of Company of Heroes' asymmetrical core matchup.

The US has a slight numbers advantage in the early infantry stages of a battle but the Axis forces can bring halftracks to the mid-game and elite tanks into the endgame.

A few games have tried to imitate Company of Heroes over the years, but none have really come close. Gordon Freeman awakes from stasis to find Earth transformed into a dystopian hellscape by an invading alien force. Valve's influential FPS is still fantastic, particularly its eerie, understated atmosphere.

The Combine are genuinely unnerving antagonists, but they didn't anticipate going up against a mute physicist who can yank radiators off the wall and launch them at high speeds.

A linear FPS but one that makes you feel as if you're finding your own path through it, rather than being shoved along rails by the developers. And the gravity gun is still the most enjoyable multitool in games: FPS design often copies the Halo idea of a single, repeatable loop of fun, but Devil Daggers really boils it down. Here the loop is backpedalling in an arc while shooting daggers at nearby enemies, clearing enough room to aim at the weak spot of a distant, tougher enemy, then spinning around to take out the skull-face jerk sneaking up behind you.

It's just you and infinite bastards to shoot. If you die and don't go to heaven or hell, you play Devil Daggers until you win. A gloriously silly arcade playground that takes the Forza Motorsport series' deep love of cars and customisation and transports it into a vibrant, luscious world full of ridiculous races and entertaining off-road mayhem.

Forza Horizon 3's best feature is the skill chain system, which transforms an otherwise basic drive between events into a challenge to string together stunts without crashing.

Driving pretend cars doesn't get any better than the Forza series, and Horizon brilliantly softens the simulation while still maintaining a feeling of weight and realism. Skyrim remains one of the most evocative settings on PC. It's not as big as some game worlds, but the varied biomes—from the bubbling hot springs of Eastmarch to the snow-battered coastline of Winterhold—make it feel much bigger than it is.

The role-playing is shallow and the writing isn't great, but the sense of place and feeling of freedom make up for it. Picking a direction, going for a wander, and seeing what you'll find out there among the snow and ice is The Elder Scrolls at its most captivating.

You can finish or completely ignore the main story and still have a couple hundred hours of self-guided fun—especially by adding mods to the mix. The player must find one of the scattered Cuddlefish Eggs around the world, and hatch it.

The player must own a Cyclops. A Time Capsule must be constructed and left in the world for another player to discover. The player must find the blueprint, and construct the Neptune Escape Rocket , and escape from Planet B. Sign In Don't have an account? Read at own risk This article contains unmarked spoilers. Settling in for the Long Haul Build a habitat How to obtain: