TechRadar's PC Gaming Week is back for 2021, and PC gaming has never been better – or more important.
The PC continues to be the best place to play games if you're after sheer breadth of game types. From obscure indie games to visually stunning AAA titles, our humble PCs (or tricked out rigs) let us leave our troubles behind and explore fantastic new worlds, enjoy emotional stories from creators from all over the world, or simply allow us to blow off some steam.
Speaking of steam, Valve is working on the handheld Steam Deck console, which could bring PC gaming to an even bigger audience. With Nvidia, Intel and AMD all producing some of the best PC gaming hardware they've ever made (if you can find the bloody things in stock), it's never been a better time to be a PC gamer, as our PC Gaming Week 2021 will show.
The days of having plain, boring components for your desktop computer are over. Despite having so many interesting RGB-infused parts to pick from, these crystal-inspired items outshine their competition – literally!
Our writer was so enamored that she built her first modified desktop gaming PC using every crystal-inspired component she could find.
Crowdfunding is a way for people or teams to raise funds for their projects, and some amazing games have come about that might not have otherwise thanks to people chipping in and helping fund the game.
So, we've picked the best PC games you can help fund right now. With your help, these exciting and promising titles could bring joy to a whole new audience.
Who says Macs can't play games? With a little help of Parallels Desktop software, which allows Windows 10 apps to be run on Macs, we managed to get the iconic Metal Gear Solid V running on an M1-powered Mac mini.
Want to get into PC gaming? You'll want to buy a killer desktop PC to play your games on, and while shopping around can feel a little daunting, we've got your back with our guide on how to buy a gaming PC without getting ripped off, so you can get an awesome machine for a great price.
Games aren't just a great way to have fun, they can also help us get through tough times, and in this moving article, Rosalie Newcombe explains how Shenmue, which started off on the Sega Dreamcast but is now also available on PC, helped her.
AMD FidelityFX Super Resolution is an exciting new tech that is helping games look and run better than ever, even on older hardware, so we chatted to Nick Thibieroz, Director of Game Engineering at AMD, about how the technology came about, and what the future holds for FidelityFX Super Resolution.
Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty began life on the PlayStation 2, but 20 years later the game has aged most gracefully on the PC, and is in our view the best place to play it. Not only is it a great game, but as we explain, its story is more relevant then ever. If you've not played this classic, now is the perfect time.
It’s been six years since the release of arguably the greatest city-building game of all time: Cities: Skylines, and while it was arguably one of the best simulation games ever released, there were some improvements that would really have perfected the experience of playing it.
With rumors circulating of a sequel, here are four things that we'd love to see included.
Things were so much easier back in the day for PC Gaming...right? During a time where consoles were really starting to take off, our writer looks back to when a Voodoo GPU with 16MB of VRAM was enough to power some incredible games, from Quake II to the Sims 2.
Walk with us through this nostalgic trip back to the late 90's / early 2000's.
There's some games in our lifetime that we simply miss out on - it could be due to family or owning the wrong console or PC at that time. But in 1996, Tomb Raider was everywhere, and for this writer, he missed out on the original games completely.
But in 2021 he decided to finally give them a go, and see how it fared.
You may not think the PC is the best place to play fighting games, which are traditionally associated with consoles and arcades, but they are getting better.
However, despite some recent successes, we found that fighting games on PC still have a long way to go.
The Sims is one of the biggest games in PC history, and the latest version, The Sims 4, has been a huge success - and much of that has been down to its fans and community. For PC Gaming Week, we talked to some of the people behind the game to find out how The Sims 4’s community has helped shape the game.
We've seen plenty of Star Wars games in recent years since Disney bought LucasArts,but there's still so much more that could be tapped into.
Which is why we've made a wishlist of the five Star Wars games we'd like to see on PC.
Before DLC was a common aspect of adding in more content to the base game, you could walk into a store during the 90s and come across certain expansion packs that could further expand on the main game, or work as a spinoff to the narrative.
With many lost to time or available to play know, we've drawn up a list of five expansion releases that added even more depth to the main game.
Forget about PC gaming being a solitary experience, over the years it's now grown into a great way to play local multiplayer with friends.
So, rid those preconceptions of lonely game sessions sitting at a desk, with split-screen games booming, we look at how the PC grew into the best couch multiplayer platform in the world.
Gaming isn't always a serious business. In fact, it's a great way to have a laugh, so we've listed the funniest PC games you can play right now. If you're feeling down and need a laugh (as so many of us need to these days), then these games can help put a smile back on your face.
Planet Zoo, with its deep management simulation and realistic animals, is one of the most ambitious management sim games ever made, so we spoke to Planet Zoo Game Director, Steve Wilkins about how the team at Frontier Development went about making the perfect management sim.
Trans representation in PC games in the past has veered from the insensitive to the downright offensive, but there have also been some very positive examples as well, and things are slowly getting better. We're big supporters of Trans rights at TechRadar, so for PC Gaming Week, we take an in-depth look at trans representation in PC games, including what needs to be done, and why representation is so important.
While we all love building PCs and playing our favorite games, celebrities are also getting in on the hobby, with sometimes extravagant rigs.
So, for PC Gaming Week we gathered up the best celebrity PC gaming rigs.
Built a gaming TV for your living room? Complete the setup with air remotes (also known as air mice). They can make using your PC on a big screen from your couch easy and comfortable, and they can even be used for gaming, as we explain in our guide.
1996 was a seminal year for gaming, especially on PC. From Lara Croft to Duke Nukem, it defined what players would be buying until at least the millenium. We've compiled a list of the top five games that defined PC gaming in 1996.
If the idea of scuba diving around a shipwreck fills you with paralyzing fear, chances are you have thalassophobia, otherwise known as a fear of deep water. It's easy enough to avoid a real-life shark-infested ocean of course, but what about video games? We compiled a list of the top ten worst games you can play if you have a fear of what lurks below.
The Uncharted games are some of the best ever made, but they are PlayStation exclusives. However, a new leak suggests an Uncharted Collection on PC is coming, and if it's true, it once again proves that the PC is the best place to play the best games. Perfect timing for PC Gaming Week!
Don't sleep on Crytek's Hunt: Showdown. It's one of the best online shooters out there, and it's also one of the most accessible, with plenty of features that means this is a challenging, yet fair, game.
One of the best things about PC Gaming Week is that we get to wax lyrical about some of our favorite PC games, and that's exactly what we do here, as we look back at the iconic MMO EverQuest, and how it changed PC gaming forever.
Ultrawide monitors are one of the best things about PC gaming, so it's always great to see games take full advantage of 21:9 aspect ratios. For PC Gaming Week 2021, we talked to the devs behind Greak: Memories of Azur about why ultrawide is so important to them.
You know PC gaming is getting bigger and bigger when ex-NFL superstars like Hank Baskett make a second career building PCs for some of Football's biggest stars.
And for PC gaming week, we got to sit down with him to find out how former NFL player Hank Baskett withdrew from the spotlight to make custom gaming rigs for pro-ballers.
With how nice a lot of 4K TVs are, it's tempting to use a giant OLED TV instead of one of the best gaming monitors – but is it worth it?
For PC Gaming Week, we ask: are TV-sized displays actually practical as PC gaming monitors?
Private servers are as much a part of PC gaming as graphics cards and RGB lighting, even if they're sometimes in a gray area according to EULAs. But they're still a great way to play some of your old favorites.
And for PC Gaming Week, we take a look at Resident Evil Outbreak private servers - keeping online games alive after official support drops.
Yu-Gi-Oh was a huge cultural imprint of the 2000s, and it spawned an online sensation with Yu-Gi-Oh online, that sadly isn't quite as its peak anymore.
So for PC Gaming Week, we went ahead and took a look at the history of Yu-Gi-Oh Online.
This past year, as we've all been working from home and becoming painfully familiar with Zoom and other video conferencing apps, we've all dabbled in a bit of gaming while listening to coworkers drone on in yet another pointless meeting.
For PC gaming week, we take a look at how to Beat Zoom boredom with these great games to play during online meetings. Just don't tell anyone you're reading this one.
The Sims series are some of the most popular PC games ever made, appealing to a huge range of people - including many who would never normally think of themselves as PC gamers.
To celebrate, we take a look back over the history of The Sims, and how it became the cultural behemoth it is today.
PC gaming encompasses a huge range of game styles and genres, and one of the most interesting, and unique, is the detective game. There's nothing quite like getting immersed in a world, collecting clues and figuring out crimes (and other puzzles), so we've listed the 10 best detective games on PC for you to enjoy.
T-Pain made his rise to fame by making some great music, but since then he's been using PC Gaming and Twitch streaming to go even further.
In an Interview, we show How T-Pain utilized PC gaming to further his pop culture legacy.
The Simpsons is more than just a seminal animated comedy – that's arguably gone on way too long – the franchise is also behind some amazing PC games.
For PC gaming week, we're looking at the best Simpsons games from the 1990s.
When Halo 5 launched on Xbox One, the franchise was looking a little long in the tooth. But now, ahead of Halo Infinite, excitement is building up again, and it's largely thanks to the Halo: Master Chief Collection and Halo Infinite's upcoming free launch on PC.
For PC gaming week, we look into how Halo on PC has revitalized the franchise.
When you're looking to build a gaming PC most people will tell you to go for one of the best SSDs, but why?
For PC gaming week, we look into why you might want to pick up a faster drive, and ask ourselves: do you really need an SSD for gaming?
There was a time in PC gaming when Sierra and LucasArts were synonymous with "PC games". However, as time went on, both of these previous heavyweights diminished.
For PC Gaming Week, we look back on the rise and fall of point-and-click legends Sierra and LucasArts.
Often, when you hear people talking about a fancy new gaming PC, it's one that's cost thousands of dollars with the most badass components on the market. But, even on a budget you can build a pretty sweet rig.
We went ahead and showed how building a budget gaming PC doesn't have to be boring.
Crytek is one of the most recognisable names in PC gaming, especially with its Crysis series, which have been pushing the limits of our hardware for years. However, despite plenty of critically-acclaimed titles, studio closures and financial problems proved that nothing is easy.
We spoke to various people at Crytek to chart the rise, fall and rise again of this iconic studio.
PC Gaming Week wouldn't be complete without our definitive rundown of the very best PC games you can play right now.
From the top single player games, to hectic multiplayer madness, we selected what we think are the best PC games in 2021. Each one has been thoroughly played by us, and they all prove why the PC is the best gaming platform.
For PC Gaming Week 2021, we picked the very best gaming desktop PCs that money can buy right now. If our PC gaming coverage made you desperate to fire up a rig and play some games, then this list is an excellent starting point.
With the amount of massive PC games releasing on an annual basis, peppered with countless indie releases that just demand playing, the need for a fast, sizable solid-state drive is more dire than ever.
So, we incorporated our guide to the best SSDs on the market in several categories into PC Gaming Week 2021. Here's what we think are the best SSDs for several use cases and occasions.
Being huge fans of PC gaming, we test every end of the hardware experience, even the vast PC gaming audio market. We particularly enjoy the immersion of a good gaming headset.
Since we figure at least some of you share the same desire for excellent audio from our PC games, we included our comprehensive list of the best PC gaming headsets we tested in 2021.Matt Hanson
Matt (Twitter) is TechRadar's Senior Computing editor. Having written for a number of publications such as PC Plus, PC Format, T3 and Linux Format, there's no aspect of technology that Matt isn't passionate about, especially computing and PC gaming. If you're encountering a problem or need some advice with your PC or Mac, drop him a line on Twitter.