While many consider the current console war to be between PlayStation and Xbox, there is a bigger battle raging in the world of gaming — Console vs PC. While Microsoft has worked to bridge that gap, many purists on both sides would rather the sides don't touch. Console players prefer the ease of a plug-in-and-play system where all the hard work has been done for them at a cheaper price, while PC players love the customization and power that comes with their favorite way to play.
Yet, every year, these allegiances mean less. Once-console exclusives like Halo and Gears of War are available on PC while titles only seen on Windows platforms have slowly leaked into the world of home gaming systems. With all that said, the transition from one to the other has gotten smoother, and we're starting to see some truly great games arrive on every method of gaming. We want to highlight one (often argued) side of that today. Here are 10 Console Versions Of PC Games That Don’t Completely Suck.
10 Halo Wars 2
This entry may be a little bit unfair because Halo Wars was designed for both PC and console simultaneously, and both versions launched on the same day. But let's be real here, Halo Wars should have always been a PC exclusive — and the first title in the series proved that. It is an RTS that allows players to control UNSC forces as they take on the Covenant when their alliance comes to an end.
Despite the genre working much better for PC than console, 343 Industries and Creative Assembly designed the game to be played comfortably with a controller. While this doesn't mean the game plays better than its PC counterpart, it's a solid console version of the title.
9 Sid Meir's Civilization VI
Sid Meir's Civilization has long been one of the crown jewel franchises on PC for almost all of its existence (sans a few dabbles in the console market), so when publisher 2K Games announced Firaxis Games' Civilization VI would make its way to the Switch, fans took notice. As a city-builder, Civ VI allows players to pick one of a variety of civilizations, each with its own perks, and navigate the randomly generated worlds, building treaties, fighting wars, and exploring the sciences along the way.
On the Switch, the series found the perfect compliment. The ability to take the game on the go means a player's rhythm is never interrupted and in the grand scheme of things the game controls in a manner that works well enough. So, for Switch owners who've never dabbled outside of Nintendo consoles, this is the perfect introduction to PC-style gaming.
Minecraft is on pretty much every console imaginable, but it all started on PC. The blocky-looking title that popularized the open-world crafting genre set the world on fire when it released in 2011, and it's only gotten bigger since. In fact, the game's userbase is spread across so many different platforms, it's hardly considered a PC game anymore. Not only that, but the game plays so well on consoles, that we can hardly imagine a world where it isn't available on those platforms. Now, PC is still the best place to play, but overall, the difference is so minuscule that either version is a good option.
7 X-COM 2
Firaxis Games makes some good turn-based games, and X-COM 2 is proof of that. Releasing on PC in February 2016, the game made its way to the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in September that year and has been one of the most well-received titles in the genre. Taking place 20 years after the previous title, players fight an Alien invasion as the military group known as X-Com after the former group took over the planet.
Platers will fight using traditional tactical turn-based gameplay and recruit soldiers who have their own skill trees to expand. This is a deep and rewarding experience that deserves to be played, and thankfully, its not restricted to one platform.
6 Black Desert Online
MMOs don't always jive well with console players, but Black Desert Online seems to have hit the spot. Originally released for PC in Korea in 2015, developers Pearl Abyss created something special before porting the game to consoles in 2019. Offering a semi-free-to-play model, players are dropped into a fantasy world in the middle of a war between two nations with differing values.
With more free-flowing gameplay, Black Desert Online gives players a rich gameplay experience at a value of a price. Plus, with features like fishing and farming, there's a bit of something for every kind of player — and the game doesn't lose a step on home consoles.
5 Rocket League
Rocket League felt like a completely fresh game in 2015 when it released on PC. So, it's no surprise it was quickly ported to consoles in early 2016. Playing like soccer but with superpowered cars, Psyonix's unique experience offers players fast-paced, team-based, sports-like, arcadey action. That makes for a high-octane experience that players won't ever want to put down.
What makes this title so great for this list, however, is that the game doesn't lose any of what makes it great on consoles. In fact, there's pretty much complete parity between the different versions, so much so, it was the first title to experience cross-platform play.
4 Half-Life 2
Half-Life 2 is one of the best games ever made, and while we won't hold our breaths for a sequel, there was legitimate hope when Valve ported the game to consoles in the Orange Box. Releasing three years after the 2004 PC launch, Half-Life 2 may feel a little dated by today's standards but didn't feel out of place one bit on the then-modern machines.
Putting players in the shoes of Gordan Freeman, a scientist who has joined the resistance of humans trying to take back their planet from an evil alien overlord, the game focuses heavily on puzzle-solving. Yet, even with that, there's a big emphasis on action all while putting a lot of thought into story progression and character development. This game has it all, and on consoles, it works well.
3 Starcraft 64
Look, we're not going to sit here and tell you that Blizzard's legendary Starcraft is better on the Nintendo 64 than PC, but we will say that the inclusion of split-screen co-op gave the game a distinct feeling that the original never had. As one of the best examples of the RTS genre, players can take control of one of many factions, building their armies, searching for resources, and battling their foes.
Released in 1998, Starcraft felt like the next big step in the genre, and by 2000, it was cemented as one of the most important games ever when it finally came to the Nintendo 64. While we have our gripes regarding RTS titles on earlier consoles, this one gets a pass for being so cool.
2 Pillars Of Eternity
Developed by Obsidian Entertainment — one of the best in the business when it comes to character and world-building— Pillars of Eternity hearkens back to a classic age of PC RPGs where games were isometric, class-based, and story-focused. Inspired by titles like Baldur’s Gate and Planescape: Torment, this title brings an often overlooked era in gaming to the masses in a way never seen before.
Set in a fantasy world, players are thrown into a land where the inhabitants are borne without souls. That is, until one finally is. Discovering this, our hero is set on an adventure, to get to the bottom of it. With an emphasis on choice, players are forced to forge their own path and experience the world in their own unique way, all while building up their ideal party.
1 Diablo III
While Diablo is a series synonymous with PC, its third entry proved the franchise was ready to jump into the land of consoles. Originally released in 2012, the game set the world on fire with it's classic Diablo click-based combat and loot-based exploration mixed with all new classes and an epic story that both expands the series' lore while allowing for an easy entry point for newcomers.
Yet, when it came to consoles in 2013, then again to a new generation in 2014, it just worked. And as of 2018, the game is available on the Switch, becoming one of the best handheld gaming experiences we can remember.