Pixelkin 2019 Holiday Gift Guide: PC

Posted by | November 22, 2019 | Feature, PC | No Comments

The PC is still home to the biggest assortment of games, especially indie games, though with the abundance of cross-platform releases and the Switch becoming a major home for indie gaming, the line between PC and console gaming is growing increasingly blurred.

The biggest change in PC gaming this year is the addition of the Epic Games Store, courtesy of Fortnite developer Epic Games. Epic has been offering exclusive deals to many publishers, much to the chagrin of PC gamers who have grown used to Steam as their primary PC gaming library. Like Steam, the Epic Games Store is free to download and use, though it does lack most features we’ve come to expect from digital stores.

See below for all our PC game recommendations for 2019.

 

Younger Kids

Doraemon: Story of Seasons

Story of Seasons, which used to be called Harvest Moon, is the original farming-RPG series that inspired the likes of Stardew Valley. Doraemon: Story of Seasons combines the beloved farming gameplay with the classic Japanese anime series Doraemon, featuring all the primary characters, including the titular time-traveling cat and his gadgets.

PC store: Steam
Also available on: Switch

Team Sonic Racing

Mario and friends aren’t the only ones who like to settle their differences on the race track. Team Sonic Racing features 15 racers spread over three distinct classes, and 21 different tracks, including favorites from previous Sonic racing games. Up to four players can race together locally, or up to 12 players online.

PC store: Steam
Also available on: PlayStation 4, Switch, Xbox One

Untitled Goose Game

The goose is loose in Untitled Goose Game, where you play as a real jerk of a goose. It’s a light-hearted puzzle-adventure where you steal shoes, hide in boxes, scare children, and generally be a hilarious nuisance.

PC store: Epic Games Store
Also available on: Switch

Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair

The first Yooka-Laylee was crafted as a spiritual successor to the wave of 3D platformers of the late 90s/early 2000s, but was met with mixed results. The sequel, Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair,  takes a far different approach, utilizing successful 2D level designs. It’s both a solid throwback to classic game design, and a refreshing modern update.

PC store: Steam
Also available on: PlayStation 4, Switch, Xbox One

 

Older Kids & Teens

Age of Wonders: Planetfall

Planetfall is more than a sci-fi version of turn-based strategy series Age of Wonders, which combines Civilization’s empire management with XCOM-like tactical combat. Planetfall completely changes city-building and expansion through the use of sectors, and expands combat to make room for armored dinosaurs and laser guns.

PC store: Steam
Also available on: PlayStation 4, Xbox One

Apex Legends

EA and Respawn surprised everyone when they dropped the Fortnite-like Battle Royal shooter, Apex Legends. What was initially seen as a Fortnite-killer has since cooled off, but the makers of Titanfall have crafted an excellent team-based online shooter in a (slightly) more serious sci-fi universe.

PC Store: Origin
Also available on: PlayStation 4, Xbox One

Evolution Board Game

North Star Digital produced one of the most gorgeous board game adaptations we’ve ever seen in Evolution. Players use cards to create new species, increase their population and body size, and add powerful new traits to repel, or become, predators. The video game features a 24-level campaign and local and online multiplayer with ranked matchmaking.

PC store: Steam

Also available on: iOS, Android

Outer Wilds

It’s the end of the world, Groundhog Day style in indie adventure Outer Wilds. As an astronaut on a new planet, you have exactly 22 minutes until the sun explodes. It’ll take a multitude of iterations to explore the mystery behind the time loop, diving further and further into the story and wider universe with each catastrophic death.

PC store: Epic Games Store
Also available on: PlayStation 4, Xbox One

Planet Zoo

From the developers of Planet Coaster and Jurassic World Evolution comes Planet Zoo, which combines theme park management and robust creation tools with advanced creature AI. Every animal in your zoo, from elephants to chimpanzees and tapirs have very specific habitat needs and requirements, and only happy animals will make for a successful zoo.

PC store: Steam
Also available on: N/A

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

And legions of fans cried out, “finally, a good Star Wars game!” Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order takes place in the fertile story-telling era between the prequels and the original trilogy, and stars Cal Kestis, a young Jedi who must survive being hunted down by The Empire.

PC Store: Origin
Also available on: PlayStation 4, Xbox One

Wargroove

Wargroove asks one simple question: Do you like Advance Wars? The beloved handheld tactical strategy series has been given an excellent spiritual successor, transforming the pseudo-modern Advance Wars into a fantasy series with a lengthy story campaign as well as skirmish, puzzle, and map editing modes.

PC Store: Steam
Also available on: PlayStation 4, Switch, Xbox One

 

Mature Teens

Borderlands 3

Borderlands 2 is often considered one of the best games of the previous generation. Borderlands 3 may not live up to that lofty goal, but it’s still a fantastic entry in the popular co-op looter-shooter series, and one of the few big budget games to still offer split-screen couch co-op.

PC Store: Epic Games Store
Also available on: PlayStation 4, Xbox One

Control

Developer Remedy (Alan Wake) came out swinging with this gorgeous third-person action game. Control stars Jesse Faden, an agent for a secretive government organization that studies strange phenomenon, and finds her world, and reality itself, torn apart. Thankfully she’s got a supernatural firearm and some special abilities of her own.

PC Store: Epic Games Store
Also available on: PlayStation 4, Xbox One

The Division 2

The first Division had a rocky start but Ubisoft spent months and years patching and upgrading the shared world multiplayer post-apocalyptic looter-shooter. The sequel shifts from New York City to Washington D.C., featuring Ubisoft’s trademark attention to geographical detail, and satisfyingly refined weapons and classes.

PC Store: Epic Games Store
Also available on: PlayStation 4, Xbox One

The Outer Worlds

Leave it to Obsidian Entertainment (Pillars of Eternity) to craft a better Fallout game than Bethesda.The Outer Worlds  infuses all of Fallout’s satirical dismantling of mega-corporations within a pulpy sci-fi first-person RPG, as the choices you make ultimately determine the fate of the Halcyon star system.

PC Store: Epic Games Store
Also available on: PlayStation 4, Xbox One

Red Dead Redemption 2

The open-world western sequel is a once-in-a-generation kind of game: impossibly huge, utterly engrossing, and fun as hell, with an intense, lengthy story campaign and an online universe to live out your western fantasies with friends. The first game never came to PC, but Red Dead Redemption 2 has arrived just a year after its initial launch, on Rockstar’s new digital store.

PC store: Rockstar Games Launcher
Also available on: PlayStation 4, Xbox One

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice

Fans of the Dark Souls series need no further incentive for Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, the newest game from FromSoftware. Sekiro is closer to a traditional action-stealth game than the more RPG-like Souls series, and takes place in a vastly under-explored time period in 16th century Japan.

PC Store: Steam
Also available on: PlayStation 4, Xbox One

Eric Watson

About Eric Watson

Eric is a freelance writer who enjoys talking about video games, movies, books and Dallas-based sports teams. Every week he watches a random film from his collection of several hundred DVDs and live tweets about it @RogueWatson. He also makes a mean tuna quesadilla. He lives near Fort Worth, Texas with his wife and daughter, two dogs, two cats, two fish tanks, some hermit crabs and a bookshelf full of Transformers.