Best free PC games for 2022

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Image of a goddess preparing her special move in Smite

Looking for the best free PC games? We all know how expensive it can be to compile an efficient and powerful gaming rig, so sometimes it's nice to remedy that by playing games that don't cost a penny. You're in luck, because we've got a list of fantastic PC compatible games that won't break the bank.

In this list, we'll run through a couple of PC-friendly games that you can download right now without having to worry about paying. Even better, we've got a nice and varied range of genres included, so there should be something to appeal to all kinds of gamers.

For even more recommendations, check out our list of the best free action games to get your blood pumping. We've also got the best free strategy games and the best free horror games for two other genre picks.

Here are the best free PC games

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Raid: Shadow Legends

Image of a group of champions in Raid: Shadow Legends.

First on our list is Raid: Shadow Legends, an RPG that it's almost impossible not to be familiar with. This fantasy game gives you over 300 different champions to do battle with in tense turn-based battles where strategy is key. Your best plan of attack is to learn your roster of champions inside out, so you know exactly which moves to apply against the range of enemies.

While it is best known as a mobile game, a PC port of Raid: Shadow Legends arrived in early 2020. It's just as fleshed out as the handheld version, but boasts more impressive graphics. As such, if it's a game you've seen advertised but have yet to try out, it's definitely worth playing Raid: Shadow Legends on your PC.

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World of Tanks

Image of the match victory screen in World of Tanks.
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Next is another long-running PC game, which has been going strong since 2010. World of Tanks is a military combat game that lets you drive around in various military vehicles, spanning historical tanks from the early 20th century to the dawn of the Cold War. Each tank is lovingly designed to resemble its real-life counterpart, making this a must-play for military history buffs.

The gameplay is more than up for the task as well. Game modes range from 15v15 deathmatches to objective-based tasks like destroying enemy outposts, making it immediately accessible if you've played any shooters before. Equally, you and some friends can team up into a clan, participating in co-op duels against other groups to destroy enemy strongholds. It's a PC staple for a reason, making World of Tanks worth a try.

Roblox

Image of the Jailbreak game in Roblox, with a prisoner running from police.

The Roblox platform is one of the most varied games hosts out there, and as such the chances are you'll be able to find something to play, no matter your favourite genre. From action-packed sandboxes in games like Jailbreak to combat-intensive anime games like Project Slayers, the user-generated nature of Roblox means pretty much anything you can think of is out there.

Almost all Roblox games are playable on PC via the dedicated app, in-case you don't feel like playing on a small mobile screen. Some games on the platform can be incredibly graphically impressive, and will no doubt switch your perceptions of Roblox. Look no further than Frontlines, which went viral earlier this year for its astounding FPS graphics.

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Forge of Empires

Image of a growing historical society in Forge of Empires.
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If you prefer PC gaming for the wide range of strategy titles out there, look no further than Forge of Empires. In this browser game that you don't even need to download, you control a civilisation as it expands from the minnows of the Stone Age to futuristic space exploration and advanced technological breakthroughs. Doing so is unsurprisingly a very gradual process, as you individually build and expand your society, invest in resources, and even do battle when needs be.

In that sense, Forge of Empires is a very traditional town builder game. You need to keep the population happy by expanding the range of resources at your disposal and tackling rival civilisations to strengthen your empire. You can spend money on the premium currency and diamonds to speed up the process or get some high-level items early, but that isn't a requirement at all. If you're ready to build a whole new world, Forge of Empires is for you.

Splitgate

Image of a player holding a gun in Splitgate.

If you've ever fancied playing a mixture of Halo and Portal, Splitgate is the game for you. This high-speed FPS burst onto the scene in the summer of 2021, as the must-play sensation of that season. While it may seem like your typical sci-fi FPS on the surface, the entire traversal system is flipped on its head as you rip open portals to dive through mid-combat.

It completely changes gunfights, making Splitgate a shooter that rewards player creativity and thinking on the fly. If an enemy is bolting towards you, it's simple enough to open a portal and dive to the other side of the map. More cunning players will be able to trap enemies using portals, or even send bullets flying in different directions. The opportunities really are limitless.

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Smite

Image of two gods battling in Smite.
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Last on our list for now is Smite, a hardcore MOBA that'll no doubt appeal to mythology fans. You can play as a range of ancient deities, from Thor and Loki to Athena and Zeus, harnessing each of their supernatural powers in tense PvP matches and duels against AI grunts.

It's one of the deepest games on our list, with a massive esports scene and in-depth meta that means you'll need to choose your main wisely. However, Smite is still nice and accessible thanks to its licensed crossovers. Ever wanted to fight against Posideon while playing as one of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles? Or as Optimus Prime? Now you can!

That's it for our list of the best free PC games! If you want even more recommendations, check out our list of the best free story games to dive into.