Up For Debate - What are the best games to play on a low-end PC?

Written by Chad Norton on Sun, Aug 1, 2021 5:00 PM

Pretty graphics and high frame rates are always nice, but not everyone has such a luxury. Especially in today’s climate of PC hardware, many are still stuck with old hardware that makes it difficult to run the latest games. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t any games out there for low-end users.

So today we’re going to try and help those who don’t necessarily have the best hardware to play the latest games, and instead give them suggestions for older/well optimized titles that will run on just about anything. Because at the end of the day we’re all gamers who simply want to play some damn good games.

Just because we’re looking for games that run well on low-end hardware doesn’t mean we’re necessarily looking to suggest old games. Sure, just about anything with an electrical connection can play the original 1993 DOOM game now, but despite the reputation it has Fortnite runs remarkably well on all sorts of hardware.

A lot of indie games also have a very distinct art style that then lends to less than demanding graphics. Games like Shovel Knight, Hotline Miami, Terraria etc. all have very simple art styles and can practically run on anything you throw them at. But if you’re looking for a more single player RPG experience then you can’t get much better than Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic.

What do you think? What are the best games to play on a low-end PC? Are they mostly old games? Or are some of them just really well optimized for all types of PC configurations? Let’s debate!

What would you consider your PC setup to be?

If you have a low-end PC do the specs get in the way of playing most games you want?

Should modern games cater more for low-end PCs?

Do you think PC specs are too high these days?

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15:37 Aug-07-2021

I'm still using a 6 year-old gaming laptop and play old games like CS:GO.

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13:19 Aug-07-2021

I have a laptop with terrible specs: i5 6200U, Intel HD Graphics 520, 8GB RAM. It can barely run Minecraft at minimum settings. What games can I play on it?

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15:50 Aug-07-2021

ever played Prototype 1 and 2, Overlord 1 and 2, Darksiders 1 and 2?

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13:04 Aug-02-2021

I was actuall looking forward to an article like this,since recently I got a laptop to use for college/work(powerful cpu and a lot of ram but integrated gpu) and was wondering what kind of games i could play on it.

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11:04 Aug-02-2021

Loved the topic. Kindly continue this series of low end hardware and one thing, GIve detailed information about the games. Also, add games for mid range specs like gt cards and i5 4th gen pc's. As most of the people are stuck with these pc's due to high component prices.

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11:18 Aug-02-2021

The gt cards and i5 4th gens are not mid rnage specs though. Mid range would be the rtx 3060 and ryzen 7 5800x or let's say we can't get thist generation due to lower supply than demand, then it's the rtx 2060/Super and ryzen 7 3700x that is mid-range.

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13:06 Aug-02-2021

Well idk,I'd consider my pc midrange too since there is no new game that I couldn't play(with no lag/stutters whatever)at high settings(excepting cyberpunk but that game is a mess tbh).

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19:39 Aug-02-2021

Ryzen 5 CPUs are low-end, the rx 500 series had only entry and low-end GPUs.

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10:46 Aug-02-2021

Answering questions:



  1. My PC is low-end and always has been.

  2. It's not getting in the way just yet if I turn down settings in the most demanding games.

  3. Modern games should cater towards console specs as always, if you don't have a PC at least 25-30% stronger than the PS5/XSX then don't complain about perf.

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10:49 Aug-02-2021

  1. PC specs are infact still pretty low


Games recommended: PoP Trilogy, Battlefield 2,BC2,3,4. Call of Duty 4-BO2, Forza Horizon/Motorsport, NFS HP2, UG2, MW2005, Carbon, Starcraft 2, Warcraft 3, Rise of Nation, Age of Mythology/Empires, Halo MCC, Total War Medieval 2, Dark Souls Trylogy, Fallout 3,4,NV,

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10:51 Aug-02-2021

The Elder Scrolls 3,4,5, Rainbow Six 3, Vegas 1 and 2, the witcher trilogy, dragon quest, final fantasy(all), dungeon lords, Titan Quest, Diablo 1-3, Darksiders 1,2,3, Genesis. Assassin's Creed up to Syndicate, Stronghold Crusader 2, Cities Skylines, Europa Universalis 4, Company of Heroes 1,2, Civilization VI.

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10:53 Aug-02-2021

Dragon Age all of them, Mass Effect Trilogy. Dead Space Trilogy. Insurgency, Verdun, Dirt 4/Rally 2.0, Rayman series, Orcs must die 2, Dungeon Defenders, Bloodstained RotN, Magicka, Trackmania FE, Nations, Turbo.

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10:53 Aug-02-2021

And these are all games that are 15 years old or newer, the are tons of older games that I don't want to spam further here, those are some of the best.

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06:26 Aug-03-2021

GTA SAN ANDREAS, Mafia 1-2, Pro Evolution 16
By the way GeForce Experience helps me with the graphics settings

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22:31 Aug-01-2021

I think they are exaggerating I have a Phenom II X4 955 and Gtx 960 4GB 8GB of RAM AC Odyssey 30 fixed fps, Orcs Must Die 3 +60 fps , Monster H World Iceborrn +30 ,Necromunda Hired Gun +40 fps,ME Legendry +70 Max , all with 1080p and more

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07:06 Aug-02-2021

anything under 60 fps is nearly unplayable. 45 fps is sometimes doable but dude upgrade your .

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12:57 Aug-02-2021

nah people play games in 15fps and are fine with that

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20:25 Aug-01-2021

Stardew Valley

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20:15 Aug-01-2021

F.E.A.R

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22:50 Aug-01-2021

This!

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19:22 Aug-01-2021

Max Payne 3
Hitman Absolution
Battlefield 4

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18:59 Aug-01-2021

If you have a really, really low end PC (by which I mean you have a bad gfx card, for eample a business laptop with iGPU) and you're interested in games like Hearts of Iron but cant run them.
I would recommend A.R.S.E.N.A.L. Extended Power

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18:17 Aug-01-2021

I had a low end pc about a couple of months ago. the only games you could play on thse are old Games or some remastered ones and indie or 2d games.

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17:26 Aug-01-2021

well it depends on whats the low end pc to who, is it the low end modern hardware or just old hardware, i would say DmC Devil May Cry its still decent looking and its pretty light on hardware like HD6450 a low end gpu from 2011 and it has no problem of running it 1080p60fps

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Can They Run... |

Core i5-4460 3.2GHz Radeon RX 570 XFX RS Black 4GB 8GB
| 60FPS, Medium, 1080p
Ryzen 5 5600X 6-Core 3.7GHz GeForce GTX 1660 Super MSI Ventus XS OC 6GB 16GB
100% Yes [1 votes]
Core i7-6700HQ 4-Core 2.6GHz GeForce GTX 950M v2 4GB 8GB
| 60FPS, Low, 720p
Core i3-9100F 4-Core 3.6GHz GeForce GTX 970 Asus Strix OC 4GB Edition 32GB
50% Yes [2 votes]
| 60FPS, Medium, 1080p
Core i5-2500 3.3GHz GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Gigabyte OC 4GB 8GB
100% Yes [1 votes]
Core i5-5200U 2.2GHz Intel HD Graphics 5500 Mobile 8GB
| 60FPS, Low, 1080p
Core i5-4460 3.2GHz Radeon R9 280 Gigabyte WindForce 3X OC 3GB Edition 16GB
100% Yes [1 votes]
| 60FPS, High, 4k
Core i9-10900K 10-Core 3.7GHz GeForce RTX 3070 Gigabyte Vision OC 8GB 64GB
Core i5-3210M 2.5GHz Radeon HD 7500G 8GB
| 30FPS, High, 1080p
Ryzen 5 2600X 6-Core 3.6GHz Radeon RX 5600 XT Sapphire Pulse 6GB 16GB
0% No [1 votes]
| 60FPS, Medium, 720p
Core i3-4030U 1.9GHz Intel HD Graphics 4400 Mobile 2GB
0% No [1 votes]
| 60FPS, Low, 1080p
Ryzen 5 2600X 6-Core 3.6GHz Radeon RX 570 4GB 16GB
100% Yes [5 votes]