I started up playing PC games again for about the first time in 5 years (I still played the odd one but did not keep on top of things like I did prior to the 5 year point) so I wondered what was going on in PC world. So in the vein of the various recent film/top 5 thread I thought I would do a PC game thread. I do not mind too much about genre although flight sims can be ignored fairly safely and it would have to be a hell of a racing game to pique my interest. I have no qualms about tweaking stuff and if you are new to it all or just want some info I highly suggest: http://www.tweakguides.com/ I would not consider it nice if I did not have some of my own experiences down here too so here are the games for PC I have played recently. Unless I say otherwise I have not messed around with mods of any form and I will also go a game if it is able to be emulated well. Multiplayer I could not care less about until several months after the fact and even then it is still good game/server, bad game/server and unless the devs really hammed things up a good single player makes for at least a passable multiplayer. So aside from oblivion and morrowind I have been playing FPS games quite a bit. I picked up STALKER: A bit rough around the edges (some slightly dodgy translation in places and graphics may not please everyone (still fantastic though) and some issues with quests) but perhaps one of the best games I have ever played. Certainly the best FPS with RPG elements since the original Deus Ex (I have yet to play Mass Effect or Bioshock). Quite in fact some RPGs could learn a bit from it: fairly hassle free paths from place to place with routes for the adventurous too: done weapons/armour: good through the game although upgrades still worth it: I was using a slightly upgraded weapon I got 40 minutes in for quite some time. Scaled and varied enemies: I could have gone up against high level people with good equipment and frequently did. Inventory management: one of the best I have played with. You can carry up to 60 KG but above 50 (the supposed limit) you suffer stamina problems (and you will want to run and jump), keeps you from doing the carry 600 weapons, all the ammo and potions in the world making for a what the hell do I pack kind of dilemma. What people say: even at the audio level (go to the military base in Cordon and listen to the speaker) it is at least slightly varied. FPS wise it is also great: the AI characters try to outsmart you (I lost count of the times I got snuck up on while staring down a scope/iron sights all whilst pinned behind cover). Weapon physics: depending on who you are it may not please you but very realistic (gravity on bullets, good recoil, accuracy over distance issues) Maps: plenty of cover and options for strategies (not quite something like rainbow six vegas level but still there), atmosphere was very bleak but in a good way and backed up but some nice visual effects (radiation/psi changes your vision). Crysis: I thought I would see what the fuss was about. A solid game again with good AI (although perhaps not as good as STALKER), the last level was very bug ridden so I gave up, uninstalled it and read/watched the ending. Before then I quite enjoyed the nano suit used to up your abilities and the weapon mods (it was not quite up there with the original deus ex but not much is). Some call it a system killer but if you were halfway sensible with your choice of options and resolution you should be fine. Portal: Much has been said so I thought I would pick up a copy. More of a puzzle game than a FPS (although my hard won FPS reflexes still got a use on more than one occasion). Some have praised the humour but compared to some of the TV/film/books I see it did not stack up. Against games it did stack up though (aside from the likes of Sam and Max, Grim Fandango and the discworld games). Call of Duty 4: Again I thought I would see what the fuss was about. Ended up being pleasantly surprised, some enjoyable social commentary (although perhaps not as much as the other games I list here), some interesting levels. AI perhaps not at the standards of other titles here but certainly passable (if only by the tried and true have 50 enemies approach), good weapons. A bit short but good throughout so I am willing to let it slide, maybe if it is the choice between this and another wait for this to appear as a budget game. Rainbow Six Vegas: (actually about 3 months ago but I need to buff up this list) a solid tactical team based shooter, good level design, good weapons usage (better in many ways than the other games here), good AI (better than COD4 but not perhaps as good as Crysis if only because you normally face entrenched enemies or are at a somewhat indefensible point where enemies attack you and most of the time try to figure out how to bypass them). So FPS titles over (odd as I usually do not give FPS titles more than a passing interest unless they are truly brilliant). The Witcher: RPG title somewhere in between Elder Scrolls/Might and Magic and Diablo. Not quite as good as the two mentioned but well worth a play. Again social commentary is present in large doses (it seems to be almost a prerequisite for me to like complex games and such these days). RPG wise we see skill trees restricted by level return. Click as hard and fast as you can is eschewed in favour a timing based clicking system (more analogous to a FPS with burst/auto fire or a fighting game) and you change fighting styles (if you have played any of the jedi knight series or maybe to a lesser extent phatasy star online/Star Wars KOTOR you should get the idea). Weapons/magic, odd system and fairly simple but it works. Potion making is a bit more complex perhaps being up there with Elder Scrolls/Might and Magic but only just. Quests: usual gather info and kill things, side quests: kill, escort, bring me..... Atmosphere: not quite as atmospheric as stalker but better dialogue (which is an odd choice of words as it seems to have lost a bit in translation: some people are working on restoring it though). It is more shades of grey than clear cut good guy and absolute bastard that a lot of games featuring "choice" support. No RTS games for me recently but I am normally very picky about those (Shogun total war, Warhammer Dark Forces, Dune BFA, Dungeon Keeper, Syndicate, Populous and to an extent Age of Empires being the only ones I really rate having played a load more (most I can take or leave)) so I would not look to me for those. Likewise no racing games either as again I am fairly fussy about those (good motorbike (mx mainly) games and stuff like Carmageddon). Fighting: Emulation and stuff like mugen aside I have played all of 3 fighting games on the PC ever (the last being probably being Virtua Fighter) which coincidently means I probably have played them all. It has to be a really special game for me to want to play them on any platform too. Sports: unless the Amiga counts as a PC (in which case I played sensible soccer for 40 minutes and speedball for a little while longer)..... So over to the 'temp. Good games from the last 5 years.