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The 32 best PC games revealed

Video games no PC owner should be without

When it comes to gaming, the PC beats any console hands-down. We've put together a list of 32 must-have PC games.

12: Sins of a Solar Empire

Who would have thought that a company such as Stardock, the folks who got their start making Windows skinning programs, would go on to develop a game like Sins of a Solar Empire? Part 3D RTS, part 4X (eXplore, eXpand, eXploit, and eXterminate) game, Sins came from the skies to reinvigorate space-based strategy. It has no campaign to speak of; instead, Sins presents various scenarios, most of which boil down to handing you a planet, a credit line, and a galaxy to conquer, and saying "go." And don't forget: Stardock doesn't use DRM or copy protection in their games. Thank you, Stardock. You are not evil.

11: Diablo II

From Marius's first weary words narrating his tale of demons and angels, through to his bitter end at the hands of the Lord of Destruction, Diablo II is an unforgettable adventure. The game fine-tuned the hack-and-slash RPG with a superb narrative and Blizzard's trademark polish, and spawned a legion of wannabe clones that struggled to match its brooding, bloody style. Even as great as the single-player game was, though, it is Diablo II's Blizz.Net-powered co-op multiplayer that still has us hacking away. This isometric gem did just about everything right.

10: Company of Heroes

We love Company of Heroes. We can even forgive it for being yet another World War II title, because it's got the best RTS action in modern gaming. Relic took everything they learned from Dawn of War and made it better, and the result is a tactician's dream come explosively true. The king-of-the-hill resource system meshes perfectly with the setting, and cover is so well integrated that you'll wonder what's taken RTS games so long to get the hint. And for you graphics whores out there? It's just about the prettiest strategy game ever made. Hitch a ride with Able Company. You won't regret a single minute.

9: Unreal Tournament 2004

Even though it never quite perfected free-for-all, UT2K4 has some of the best team-based gameplay in the genre, and it's thanks to Onslaught: a pioneering gametype of linked nodes, base assault, and vehicular manslaughter. Success in Onslaught necessitates teamwork, and UT2K4 is ready to provide, with vehicles and link guns bringing gamers together like pizza and Bawls. Sure, Unreal Tournament 3 has normal mapping and a hoverboard, but it also has a Malcolm that's gone absurdly urban. We'll take our Unreal sans MC Hammer, Epic. Thanks, though.

NEXT PAGE: Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic and Starcraft

  1. The games no PC owner should be without
  2. Grim Fandango and Deus Ex
  3. Indigo Prophecy and Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Pandora Tomorrow
  4. Fallout 2 and Supreme Commander
  5. Battlefield 2 and The Longest Journey
  6. Sins of a Solar Empire and Diablo II
  7. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic and Starcraft
  8. Our must-have PC game

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