The 25 Best Horror Games On PC

To compile a list of the 25 best horror games on PC is to look into the void for so long that the void not only starts to look back, but shakes you by the hand and takes you out for coffee. It is to fight with monsters until you become a monster and then go on a European railtrip with the other monsters, and really bond over cocktails in Saint-Tropez.

It is also a great way to explore the wide range of possible experiences within horror fiction. Here, there is something for everyone, even the squeamish and the easily-startled. Yes, there are jumpscares, but there are also slow-burn psychological dramas and tongue-in-cheek splatterfests. There are uncanny things and real terrors, but there are smiles and smirks among the shocks.

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Dota 2 adds two new heroes in Duelling Fates update

Two brand new heroes have arrived in Dota 2 with the launch of version 7.07, the long-awaited Duelling Fates update. Please welcome to the battle arena Dark Willow, a spoOoky nuker, and the zippy swordsman Pangolier. They’re the first new heroes added since the Monkey King way back in December 2016. The update is far bigger than just this pair, also adding new items, a new model for Ancient Apparition, seasons for ranked play, and oodles of skill changes and balance tweaks. Read the rest of this entry »

The 25 best co-op games ever made

Sometimes you need a hand to hold, so we’ve updated our list of the 25 best co-op games to play on PC with a headset-wearing friend or a muted stranger.

Whether solving puzzles, sneaking, shooting zombies or stabbing mythical creatures in the face, the existence of another player adds an element of unpredictability. You might synchronise your stealth takedowns and execute the perfect plan, but it’s just as likely that your co-op partner will constantly alert the guards and throw your situation into chaos. Luckily both success and failure are more compelling when you can take credit for the former and blame someone else for the latter.

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How a cargo plane sets up Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds for greatness

This is The Mechanic, where Alex Wiltshire invites developers to discuss the inner workings of their games. This time, Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds [official site].

Somewhere across Erangel’s 64 square kilometres of towns, villages, hills, rivers and sea, 100 players are running, looting, driving and shooting each other. With every one of them having an average of well over half a square kilometre to themselves, it might sound like playing PUBG is a lonely experience, but in practice it’s anything but. The opening minutes are always intense, demanding strategy and planning. It’s all down to a clever piece of design that relates to how you’re being delivered to this Battle Royale:

THE MECHANIC: Cargo plane Read the rest of this entry »

The Top Best Bestest Games Of 2017 So Far

2017 has already been an extraordinary year for PC games, from both big-name AAA successes to no-name surprise indie smashes. Keeping up with so much that’s worth playing is a tough job, but we’ve got your back. Here is a collection of the games that have rocked the RPS Treehouse so far this year.

We’ve all picked our favourites, and present them here in alphabetical order so as not to start any fights. You’re bound to have a game you’d have wanted to see on the list, so please do add it to the comments below. Read the rest of this entry »

Tim Schafer tells the story of Amnesia Fortnight

“I started feeling a little bogged down by the scope of [Brutal Legend],” says Tim Schafer, founder of Double Fine. “It was really huge and I felt like the team had been doing it for a long time and had a long way to go yet. I felt like they needed a break.”

That break was Amnesia Fortnight, a two week game jam during which anyone at the developer can pitch an idea and, if it’s selected, lead a team to turn it from concept to working prototype. Now in its tenth year, I spoke to Schafer about the jam’s benefits, pitfalls and how it’s changed over the years. Read the rest of this entry »

The 50 Best FPS On PC

So often the bleeding edge of games tech, yet so often fundamentally the same underneath: there’s a reason we can’t get enough of pretend shooting pretend people in their pretend faces. It is a pure test of skill and reflex, a game about movement at least as much as it is about violence, and done right it is absolutely delightful. And hey, sometimes you get a decent gimmick or story thrown into the mix.

These are our favourite 50 first-person shooters on PC, from 1993-2017. Your favourite is at number 51.

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Why do we spend time playing games we don’t like?

We spend a lot of time playing games we don’t like. Remember The War Z, renamed to Infestation: Survivor Stories after receiving overwhelmingly negative reviews all around? On Steam, it has nearly 14,000 negative reviews which total 507,837 played hours of absolute garbage. Or what about Duke Nukem Forever, which is somehow sitting at ‘Mostly Positive’ at the moment? The 1500-odd Steam reviews that rightly acknowledge it as a flaming trash pile account for 10,013 hours those poor souls will never get back.

I’m fascinated by the lifetimes we cumulatively waste on games we end up hating, and so I decided to dig a little deeper. How long do we typically spend with a game before we decide it’s no good? Do we have to finish it, or do we make up our minds before the credits roll? Does it take us longer to nail down our feelings on a popular game versus an unpopular one? Why on earth don’t we just do something else?

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The 50 best strategy games on PC

An entirely objective ranking of the 50 best PC strategy games ever made, now brought up to date with the riches of the last two years. From intricate wargames to soothing peacegames, the broad expanse of the genre contains something for everyone, and we’ve gathered the best of the best. The vast majority are available to buy digitally, a few are free to download and play forever. They’re all brilliant.

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Best PC Gaming Deals Of The Week

I don’t know about any of you guys but after what has felt like the longest week of the decade, I’m planning to spend essentially my entire weekend playing Dishonored 2. Of course, what that means is the usual stealth game tactic of being the ultimate shadow person until being discovered and then promptly murdering everyone in sight. It’s a living.

Something else is coming out of the shadows this week. We’re about halfway through November and that means Black Friday deals are creeping out of their year-long hibernation and making themselves known. There’s a few of the ‘pre-Black Friday’ type deals go check out this week.

We’ve got deals that’ll work in the UK, deals that’ll work in the US and some deals that will work in both the UK and US, as well as presumably many other places. But first, we need to talk about free stuff.

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The 50 Best Free Games On PC

The best free games are on PC, and if you want to know what the best 50 are then you’ve come to the right place.

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Can Videogames Teach You Programming?

if(desire_to_program > 10)
    continue;
else
    return;

When I tell people I’m a programmer, I get that look. The glazed eyes, the polite smile, the clear desire to change topic. If I’m lucky, I’ll get pitched on an idea for the next killer mobile app that my conversation partner insists will make us rich; if I’m less lucky, I’ll get wrangled into providing free tech support for the rest of my life. The thing is, though, as impossible as it might sound, programming can be more fun than people realise. Fun enough to warrant its own video game genre, even.

Just how educational are these games, though? Is it really possible to become a programmer by playing games? I dug through Steam and came away with three promising candidates. Let’s take a look at them, and see whether they can really teach you skills to pay the bills.

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The 10 Best PlayStation Now Games

PlayStation Now is coming to PC, allowing you to stream PlayStation 3 games to your computer for a monthly subscription fee. That includes some of the last console generation’s best games. It might be a bit overwhelming if you’ve not been paying attention beyond the borders of PC gaming, but luckily we’ve been playing console games for the past couple of decades in case of just such an eventuality. Here are the ten best games currently offered via PlayStation Now.

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IF Only: Text Adventures For People Who Hate Guessing The Verb

Emily Short is one of the world’s leading gurus on Interactive Fiction. We’re delighted to tell you that IF Only will be a regular column about the myriad world of IF gaming.

Back in the late 90s, the name “interactive fiction” was applied mostly to parser-based text adventures descended from Zork, where all output was in text and the player had to type commands to proceed. The genre has opened up enormously in recent years, with Twine and other choice-based fiction now often included in IF competitions and databases, and with some players and journalists applying the term “interactive fiction” even to graphical games with 3D environments if they have enough of a focus on story. Contrary to common report, though, this doesn’t mean that text adventures have either gone away or stopped innovating.

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The Bestest Best Games Of 2016 So Far

We usually do our enormous GAMES OF THE YEAR posting fest at the end of the year (as would seem logical) but because it seems silly to reserve praise for special occasions we’re doing a Games Of The Half Year collection to tell you about everything we’ve loved playing so far. It can double as a summer holiday recommendations list too!

We’ve listed ours in alphabetical order to prevent genre-based punch-ups in the staff chatroom. We’d also invite you to list any gems we haven’t mentioned or might not have played in the comments below.

Just hit the left and right arrow keys to navigate the Games Of The Half Year or click on the arrows next to the images to get started!

The Great Outdoors: The Witness

While attending GDC I was thinking a lot about how “outdoors” works in videogames and speaking to artists and designers about how they had approached those environments. I was relatively early on in my experience of The Witness [official site] but I was intrigued by how many biomes were crammed onto a small island space without it ever feeling overcrowded. With that in mind I sat down with artist Luis Antonio to talk geography, architectural decay and why a simple handrail needs an entire backstory…

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Blood, Sweat & Laughter: The Beauty Of The Build Engine

When I think of gaming in the mid 90s, I think of a unique kind of grunginess. It’s like my mind’s got its finger on the Shift key with its left hand, and the Up arrow with its right, gliding swiftly through the sordid corridors of crematoriums, porn cinemas, hillbilly backwaters and dojos. But despite their muted tones of muddy browns and tombstone greys, these spaces were anything but dreary, brimming with richly-animated sprites, the promise of gory violence around every corner, and a tongue-in-cheek energy that felt clandestine, fresh, and fiendishly fun.

When I think of gaming in the mid 90s, I think of Build Engine games.

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The 15 Best Space Games

Space games have experienced a rebirth over the past few years, exploiting a decade of pent up desire for exploration among the stars in order to launch umpteen new games. But can these sequels, revivals and newcomers compete with the old classics for a place in our heart?

Let’s find out. Below you’ll find the list of the fifteen best space games ever made.

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The Best GTA 5 Mods

It’s fast approaching a year since us PC dwellers were given the chance to inhabit Grand Theft Auto V’s sprawling Los Santos cityscape and in that time the game’s modding scene has exploded. There are now thousands upon thousands of mods that serve to enhance your stay, and the following list samples the best.

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How Tool-Assisted Speedrunning Reveals The Inner-Life Of Video Games

If you watched this year’s Awesome Games Done Quick, you’re already familiar with the Olympian feats of endurance and skill that players exhibit as they race through your favorite games and make you realize that, no, you aren’t nearly as good at them as you might have thought. But there’s another side to the coin that isn’t nearly as popular as traditional speedrunning, a niche community of players prying open games and doing the unimaginable. Tool-assisted speedrunning (‘TAS’) might seem like simple cheating, but it’s so much more than that. It’s an exploration of the inner-life of video games, and it takes teams of expert players and programmers thousands of hours to do.

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