One of the great things about PC gaming is that there’s a super-abundance of choice out there. If you’re the type of person that likes 3D gaming, particularly of the open-world variety, then you’re in luck. We’ve compiled a list of some of the more notable open / semi-open world games of late, many of them also being found on consoles. It should also be noted that each of the following titles have their own indie modding resources online as well, which you can often access free of charge (for those who are into that). Alright, let’s quit stalling, here are the games…
When it comes to open-world odysseys, the newly 3 dimensionally emblazoned “Fallout” series (by Bethesda Games) is right there at the top in a lot of people’s minds. The reason for this is simple – titles like Fallout 3 and Fallout New Vegas offer an incredible amount of freedom within the context of an awesomely fantastic virtual world, ransacked by apocalyptic circumstances. In short, it’s the sort of game that you really just want to explore, multiple times perhaps.
One of the biggest criticisms of the series is its combat system, which some feel might be lacking. For the imitated however, the combat found in a game like Fallout New Vegas is actually quite comfortable, especially when you get used to taking on enemies within a standard FPS context. Of course you can always resort to using V.A.T.S. if things get out of control (effectively allowing you to target enemies from a still screen a la’ a turn-based JRPG). It’s very addictive and once you get into it, you’ll find yourself falling into the role-playing aspect more and more. This tendency is also further increased because you can actually craft every aspect of your character’s appearance as the game is starting (via the help of a friendly town doctor).
The bottom line is that Fallout New Vegas (especially the “Ultimate Edition”) is an amazing game that seamlessly blends together (what many thought were) completely disparate genres in incredible ways. There’s plenty of things to like about this game, whether we’re talking about its highly stylized gameplay (and leveling system), or wealth of content / areas to explore. If you want it all, along with 100+ hours of content to meticulously explore, this game will satisfy those requirements.
Whether or not you’re already familiar with H.P. Lovecraft, or you’re entirely devoid of any literary leanings is of no consequence, chances are you’ll love Bethesda’s “Call of Cthulhu” in either case. To make a long story short, this is a really fun and super-atmospheric survival / horror game which is perfect for the gamer that might be looking for something offering mysterious pursuits not predisposed to instant FPS slaughter. In other words, you might say that this particular game is more about experiencing the story and trying to simultaneously itch and scratch your “fear and uneasiness” muscle. One might just as easily say that it’s a partially broken game, with the mechanics either making sense to some or not being adequately comprehended by some individuals. This is yet another reason why it’s a good idea to be at least loosely familiar with the H.P. Lovecraft short story of the same name.
Simply put – if you want to check out a solid shooter that also has other redeemable features, check out “F.E.A.R.”. Aside from the awesome single player story mode, the Ultimate Shooter Edition contains two other playable scenarios, Extraction Point and Perseus Mandate, each of which enhances or adds to the main storyline in some shape or fashion. All in all, it’s a package that’s somewhat reminiscent of the old Half-Life packs with the additions like Blue Shift, although quite a bit darker and perhaps not as overtly popular. In short, this game will quench your thirst for virtual violence and/or classic FPS combat / gameplay.
The “Hitman” series is one which many either find to be quite striking and interesting, or just plain unappealing. Obviously, those with a penchant for stealth-based gameplay will view Hitman: Blood Money in a positive light. It is, after all, the sort of game that is more or less predisposed toward completing specific missions, and not roaming around for the sake of it. The point is, if you like these kinds of games, chances are you’re also a fan of other similar franchises as well, like TC’s Splinter Cell, for example. If that’s the case, then don’t waste time, download Blood Money right away.
There’s a reason why the seemingly unimposing game “Psychonauts” has a following and reputation – it’s an extremely underrated title. Seriously, when it comes to platformers (of the type and scale of a say a Mario Bros.), this game has to be one of the better examples out there. In fact, many feel that it is something of a modern PC classic, of sorts. All in all, it makes for an excellent contrast to an endless barrage of games involving gunplay.
The first Deus Ex game for PC really helped to open up some doors for future developers, perhaps even inspiring many of them to think outside the box. While this latest Deus Ex title isn’t really doing anything like that (and really, why should it have to?), it is a truly great game with a different kind of depth. First off, it’s a rather entangled story involving conspiracies and the morality of advanced genetics / cybernetics research. Secondly, the gameplay is yet another blend of classic FPS elements along with facets of well-known RPG’s, replete with a graphic novel-like feel. If one were to quantify the atmosphere throughout, it might be best described as First Person Metal Gear Solid-meets- Blade Runner.