Playing online is one of the great joys of gaming. Whether you’re playing browser games by yourself or engaging in an exciting raid with your buddies, online gaming is arguably the best innovation of the Xbox 360-PlayStation 3 era. With that said, some games are definitely better than others; not all online games are created equal. Here, we present for you the 15 best online games you can currently play on any platform, in no particular order. Without further ado, let’s get started!
Fortnite: Battle Royale (PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch)
Though it wasn’t the first game to espouse the battle royale format, Fortnite is arguably the most well-known. One hundred people enter a massive map full of weapons and crafting materials, and only one can emerge victorious. From this simple premise comes a whole host of great emergent gameplay that makes each game feel markedly different. Fortnite is still great fun, so go check it out!
Browser-based games (PC)
That’s right: browser-based games are still a thing, and you should definitely still check them out. Far from being defeated by the mobile gaming revolution, browser-based games are doing better than ever. Our favourite right now is the excellent Mahjong, a stripped-back version of the classic tile-matching game that’s perfect for relaxing. There are lots more out there, though!
League of Legends (PC)
The MOBA scene is thriving, and arguably the best MOBA around right now is League of Legends. Riot Games is continually adding new champions and features to the game, so even if you haven’t played for a while, it’s still a great idea to head back in and check it out again. First-timers will find an oceanic game with a steep learning curve and a slightly worrying community, but there’s nothing else like this game out there.
Apex Legends (PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One)
Respawn Entertainment brings its experience with first-person shooters to bear in this kinetic, exciting battle royale-hero shooter hybrid. If you’ve ever wanted to play Overwatch but with a little more PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, here’s your game. Apex Legends boasts a diverse and exciting cast of heroes, some truly innovative mechanics, and a great map.
World of Warcraft (PC)
It might seem a little cliché, but World of Warcraft is still the best MMORPG out there, despite a raft of expansions that have wavered in quality. The core gameplay loop is machine-tooled for maximum addiction, so you won’t need to worry about not playing enough to justify the subscription fee. With a wide range of classes, races, and dungeons to enjoy, World of Warcraft is still the gift that keeps on giving.
Destiny 2 (PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One)
Love World of Warcraft, but wish it had a little more active gunplay? Destiny 2 is for you. The legendary Bungie first-person shooter went free-to-play earlier this year, so there’s never been a better time to get into it. Take some friends and explore the massive solar system Bungie has created, gather loot galore, and enjoy the realisation of the dream started by the original Destiny (which this blows out of the water).
Hearthstone is, despite a raft of pretenders, the best digital card game out there. If you like this kind of game, you should also check out Gwent, but Hearthstone boasts Blizzard’s characteristic excellent design and visual polish. The game is constantly being updated with new cards, new themes, and new effects, so make sure to check back regularly if you’re a lapsed player.
Dauntless (PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch)
It’s Monster Hunter. There, we said it. The truth, though, is that Dauntless is far more than just a Monster Hunter clone. There’s a much greater sense of purpose to the gameplay, so if you’ve ever found yourself wishing Monster Hunter had a little more context, Dauntless will scratch that itch. Other than that, it’s the same monster-slayin’, loot-craftin’ action you know and love.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One)
The Call of Duty series has never been stronger than in its latest instalment. Modern Warfare takes the series back to its halcyon days in a way, but still retains the signature high-octane gameplay and classic multiplayer that Call of Duty fans have come to know and love. The campaign’s great, but we’re including it here because the multiplayer feels better than it has for a long time.
Death Stranding (PlayStation 4)
Make no mistake: Death Stranding isn’t a multiplayer game in the traditional sense. Rather, its multiplayer is reminiscent of Dark Souls, all lonely vistas full of reminders that others exist and are working through their own struggles. This supremely weird tale of a post-apocalyptic delivery agent is strange, affecting, and best played online if you want to experience everything it has to offer.
Red Dead Redemption 2 (PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One)
The online component of Red Dead Redemption 2 takes a leaf out of Grand Theft Auto Online’s book, planting players in a living, breathing Wild West world and inviting them to make of it what they will. There’s also an excellent single-player campaign in RDR2, which eulogises the dying days of the Wild West just as the first one did. It’s all about the online mode, though, which is superb.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (Nintendo Switch)
“Everyone is here.” That was the tagline that Nintendo and creator Masahiro Sakurai went with in the run-up to the release of crossover fighting phenomenon Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Every single fighter from the franchise’s history is present, and the fighting mechanics are as fine-tuned and deep as ever, making the experience perfect for taking online and schooling some fools.
Warframe (PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch)
The lore of Warframe is convoluted and intensely odd, but it doesn’t matter because the gameplay is tight, focused, and exciting. Few games make you feel like an immortal ninja warrior quite like Warframe does, mixing as it does melee combat with intense gunplay and loot-gathering. Take some friends on this journey with you, because it only gets weirder after you start.
The Blackout Club (PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One)
Fans of weird horror, your time has come. The Blackout Club mixes Stranger Things-style small-town intrigue with co-operative first-person horror exploration. You and a group of friends must complete a series of procedurally generated missions in order to discover what’s happening in your town. All the while, you’ll be avoiding horrors straight out of H.P. Lovecraft’s nightmares.
Last, but very much not least, we have multiplayer medieval slasher Mordhau. If you played Chivalry: Medieval Warfare but wished it was more brutal, Mordhau is for you. This is strictly a PvP affair, so you won’t find any co-operative raids to tackle here, but the combat is fluid, chunky, and realistic. Bonus points for the huge emergent possibility inherent in Mordhau’s many interlocking systems.