The PC has been a staple of the video game industry for decades. Consoles come and go, talk of new generations pop-up every handful of years, and companies continue to try to get in on the nostalgic classic console scene, but the one constant that remains is that you’ll never be able to experience the best gaming has to offer unless you have a PC.
That situation isn’t going to change in 2020. As we prepare to say goodbye to one generation of consoles and hello to two new console releases, the PC remains a source for some of the most innovative and essential gaming experiences.
So far, the PC games of 2020 include trips through the woods, cyberpunk free-running, and supervillain simulators. If you can’t find a PC game releasing in 2020 that doesn’t get you excited, you may be in the wrong place.
For everyone else, here are the PC games you need to play in 2020:
Age of Empires 4
TBA | Relic Entertainment
There’s a pretty good chance we don’t have to tell you what Age of Empires 4 is. For years, strategy fans have asked for Microsoft to return to the strategy series that got many people into the RTS genre in the first place.
We may not know much about Age of Empires 4, but the fact that we’re finally getting another entry into the long-dormant Age of Empires series is enough for us to confidently say that this game should be somewhere on your radar.
TBA | Torn Banner Studios | PC
The original Chivalry is one of the most surprising games of the last decade. Few titles have attempted to do multiplayer medieval combat on a large scale, and none of them before Chivalry did it as well.
Chivalry 2 looks to pick up where the brilliant original left off by offering the kind of large battles that have previously been limited to film and television. If you’re looking for a multiplayer Game of Thrones or Braveheart simulator, then the bloody and big Chivalry 2 is your game.
Evil Genius 2
TBA | Rebellion Developments
Look, we’ve all wondered what it would be like to be a James Bond villain or Saturday morning cartoon cackling madman. In 2004, Evil Genius helped us realize those dreams by offering a fascinating – if flawed – strategy management experience that let you control a supervillain empire.
Evil Genius 2 retains the promises of the original game but looks to elevate that concept to new heights. Thanks to mechanics like an improved henchman management system and better grand strategy elements, Evil Genius 2 might just have what it takes to become the supervillain simulator that gamers have waited decades for.
TBA | One More Level
You might think that Cyberpunk 2077 is the only cyberpunk title you need in your life in 2020, but continuing to think like that is a good way to miss out on one of the year’s most intriguing projects: Ghostrunner.
Ghostrunner combines cyberpunk atmosphere and story with Mirror’s Edge free-running and Superhot-style action sequences. The result is a buttery smooth and impossibly cool action experience that looks like the perfect game for those craving an action experience that doesn’t ask you to slow down.
TBA | AMPLITUDE Studios
For years, the historical 4X strategy genre has been dominated by the Civilization series. Few games in any genre match its legacy of quality or the scope of its achievements. However, Humankind may just prove to be the genre challenger that Civilization needs to keep things fresh.
By playing with the Civilization formula with new ideas such as the ability to lead multiple cultures and blend their technology together, Humankind may just raise the bar for how epic historical epic strategy really is. In any case, it’s going to keep Civilization on its toes.
Kerbal Space Program 2
TBA | Uber Entertainment
The original Kerbal Space Program remains one of the essential indie experiences in modern PC gaming. It tasks players with building a rocket that is capable of reaching the moon and beyond. Despite its cutesy aesthetics, the game’s hardcore physics system ensures that only the smartest and most patient players will ever get further than the launch pad.
Kerbal Space Program 2 may be led by a different studio, but it looks to retain the elements that made the original such a creative classic. We hope it proves to be more than just an elaborate expansion to the first game, but even that would be enough to get excited about.
Mount and Blade 2: Bannerlords
March | TaleWorlds Entertainment
The original Mount and Blade is widely regarded as one of the absolute best grand scale medieval adventures. With its seemingly impossible amount of options and large world, Mount and Blade was a few layers of polish away from being a dream gaming experience.
Mount and Blade II looks to add those layers of polish. It’s better looking, feels smoother, and is still packed with possibilities. If the game turns out to be half as good as it looks, it could become one of the most talked-about titles of 2020.
Songs of Conquest
TBA | Lavapotion
Years ago, the Heroes of Might and Magic series offered a compelling blend of turn-based strategy and role-playing that was innovative at the time and has survived through the years thanks to a surprising lack of notable imitators. Well, the developers of Songs of Conquest are not shy about comparing their project to Heroes of Might and Magic.
While we don’t know much about the finer aspects of Songs of Conquest, the promise of Heroes of Might and Magic-style gameplay with Total War scale is enough to get us excited about this beautiful strategy game and the possibility it may revive some design ideas that should have never faded away.
TBA | The Astronauts
Developer The Astronauts certainly showed it knows how to create incredible worlds and engaging stories in its debut hit, The Vanishing of Ethan Carter, but that game’s “Walking Simulator” designation left some describing it as “boring.” Well, Witchfire looks anything but boring.
A throwback to pure FPS games like Painkiller, Witchfire is shaping up to be one of the fastest and most furious action titles of 2020. This game may just give the Doom reboot a run for its money as the king of modern action-oriented FPS titles.
Way to the Woods
TBA | Anthony Tan
Way to the Woods initially drew quite a bit of attention when it was revealed that it was being developed by a teenager. Years after the hype of the game’s origins died down, though, Way to the Woods still looks like one of the most intriguing games on the horizon.
Way to the Woods sees you control two deer on a fairy tale journey through various environments. While much of the project’s gameplay remains mysterious, the beauty of the game’s artwork and the snippets of its hauntingly beautiful soundtrack we’ve heard thus far hint at a worthwhile adventure for those seeking a dreamlike experience.
Matthew Byrd is a staff writer for Den of Geek. He spends most of his days trying to pitch deep-dive analytical pieces about Killer Klowns From Outer Space to an increasingly perturbed series of editors. You can read more of his work here or find him on Twitter at @SilverTuna014.
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