In a world where every developer and their mom is pumping out multiplayer titles, rich solo experiences are becoming rare. However, the days of sitting on your couch or gaming chair alone and enjoying a story-rich single-player game are far from over.
Sometimes, it’s actually nice to get a break away from being forced to deal with other players when you’re playing something. Games can be a great way to unwind and relax, just as much as they can be used as a way to socialize and connect with other people.
Whether you want a cozy world to live a second life in, or a narrative-driven RPG and save the world—our list covers the best single-player games on Steam. We’ll help you find a new title to get lost in after a long day after work or studying.
We’ll skip some obvious recommendations, like Assassin’s Creed and Cyberpunk 2077 because who hasn’t played The Witcher 3? It’s in every single-player titles on Steam list.
The games in here are played completely solo, with no multiplayer elements. If you’re looking for that, give our list of the best local co-op games a read.
Final Fantasy VII Remake Intergrade
|Release Date:||17 June, 2022|
|Average Playtime:||33 hours|
This is my favorite JRPG and one of the best single-player games on Steam—you can’t go wrong with Final Fantasy VII Remake Intergrade. It offers a breathtaking cyberpunk world to explore and an expertly written narrative.
Don’t let the title fool you, it isn’t a Remake, that’s just one of the story’s major themes. It is a sequel to the original Final Fantasy VII whilst also being its own self-contained, standalone story.
The game and story are designed for both newcomers and fans alike. You don’t need to play the original to understand the plot in this, however, it does make some scenes more emotional.
You also don’t need to know anything about the Final Fantasy franchise. Every game in the series is standalone, and honestly—VII is probably the best entry point for someone looking to get into it.
Final Fantasy VII follows the mako-enhanced former soldier Cloud Strife. Working as a mercenary, he teams up with AVALANCHE, a resistance group, to take down the megacorp Shinra.
Mako is a magical liquid that is used as the primary energy source in FFVII’s world. However, it is also what powers the lifestream that runs through the planet and acts as its “blood”.
This sets the scene for an emotion-packed ride, with a cast of characters teeming with personality. It also has a banging soundtrack, that elevates every moment in the game.
The gameplay is also action-packed, with the most satisfying battle system I’ve ever played. It’s comparable to Kingdom Hearts, but faster.
|Release Date:||March 11, 1995|
|Average Playtime:||23 hours|
If you’re looking for the best single-player games on Steam, don’t overlook Chrono Trigger. You might be thinking—what’s a game from 1995 doing on this list?
Despite its age, it’s still frequently listed as one of the best video games of all time, and it has held up extremely well. Its charming 16-bit visuals and deep gameplay mechanics are timeless.
The game was recently ported to Steam, with a few upgrades like high-resolution graphics, extra content, and even autosave. Chrono Trigger is a true masterpiece, and the Steam version is the definitive experience.
Chrono Trigger is an old-school JRPG that was created by three legends—Square Enix actually called them the “Dream Team”. It consisted of Hironobu Sakaguchi, Yuji Horii, and Akira Toriyama.
They are the Final Fantasy creator, Dragon Quest creator, and author of Dragon Ball, respectively. This resulted in a revolutionary game, with unique mechanics, superb designs, and an out-of-this-world good story.
The game features an Active Time Battle combat system, which is similar to the one in Final Fantasy titles. Whilst the narrative, structure, and characters draw more from Dragon Quest.
Chrono Trigger initially takes place in 1000 AD, until the main characters, Crono and Lucca, create a time-teleporting portal that throws them into the past.
From here, you’ll be thrown into a time-travelling journey from primitive humans and dinosaurs to post-apocalyptic futures with sentient robots. You’ll make allies from all eras and try to save the world.
Rune Factory 5
|Genre:||RPG, Adventure, Farming Simulation|
|Release Date:||July 13, 2022|
|Average Playtime:||56 hours|
Ever wondered what Stardew Valley might look like if it was 3D with anime visuals? Well, you’d end up with Rune Factory 5. It’s a JRPG-styled spin-off from the Harvest Moon series.
The Harvest Moon games were also the direct inspiration for Stardew. If you love cute fantasy animals, casting spells at monsters, and anime waifus—this is the ideal game for you.
It offers everything you’d expect from a fantasy farming-sim game. It has crafting, fishing, cooking, people to romance, a town filled with personality, and deep farming systems.
Where Rune Factory 5 really shines, however, is with its JRPG elements. If you loved delving into the mines in Stardew, this game dials that experience to a hundred.
The game features a range of dungeons, filled with monsters for you to slice—or even tame. Instead of your standard chickens or cows, if you want eggs, you tame a monster for that.
You can tame almost every monster in Rune Factory 5, and their uses go beyond just milk and eggs. Some you can ride, fight by your side, or you can even put them to work on your farm.
The game’s bachelors and bachelorettes also all feature distinct designs with unique personalities. They’re well-written, and guess what? You can even have same-sex relationships/marriage.
Rune Factory 5 is LGBTQ+ friendly, you can romance anyone you want. The rest of the town’s villagers also have their own stories and friendship-based interactions to explore, too.
|Developers:||Bethesda Game Studios|
|Release Date:||10 November, 2015|
|Average Playtime:||27 hours|
What kind of the best single-player games on Steam list would this be without a Bethesda title? The company is one of the kings for solo experiences, and Fallout 4 is one of the best they offer.
Fallout 4 throws you into the franchise’s beloved universe, in a post-apocalyptic Boston and surrounding Massachusetts region. It hands you an open world, sandbox map to freely play in.
When it comes to interacting with the environment and NPCs, nobody else has it on levels as deep as Bethesda. In Fallout 4 you can grab almost anyone you see, and kill almost every character.
The interaction runs more than surface-deep, too. Quests and dialogue with characters will always have multiple ways to approach them, and depending on the player’s build, you might unlock more options.
If you want a virtual world where you can truly get lost in, nothing quite beats Fallout 4. You can easily spend hundreds of hours in the game due to the sheer amount of content and side activities.
The game is filled with life. All NPCs have their own routine, and that also includes enemies. The story and writing are also great, there’s plenty to love with the rich lore and worldbuilding.
Fallout 4 also adds base-building to the series, so you can even build up a cozy survival shelter. The game’s also backed by a huge modding community, which features mods ranging from gameplay overhauls to expansion-sized new content.
Detroit: Become Human
|Release Date:||18 June, 2020|
|Average Playtime:||12 hours|
From the brilliant mind of David Cage comes the single-player, narrative-focused Detroit: Become Human. If you haven’t heard of him, he’s the creator of Quantic Dream.
Quantic Dream is a team known for interactive storytelling and using games as a medium for it. They’ve also developed other popular story-heavy titles, like Heavy Rain and Beyond: Two Souls.
If you’re sick of dealing with other players annoying you and want some alone time, this is the game. It’s also not as gameplay heavy, which allows you to really immerse yourself into the world.
Detroit: Become Human is heavily inspired by works such as Blade Runner and Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep. The main character, Connor, even has the same job as Deckard.
Connor is one of the three protagonists in the game, and works as a detective hunting sentient androids. The other two are an android Kara, and Markus, who wants to free all robots.
The game takes place in a futuristic world, where androids have been created to work in servitude for humanity. It’s played from a third-person perspective, and your decisions matter.
Your choices throughout the game will affect the outcome of the story, along with your reactions to the quick-time events. If you want a thought-provoking, emotional experience, you’ll find it here.
Detroit: Become Human is close to being a masterpiece, and further proof that single-player isn’t dead. It’s expert at how it explores themes and the age-old topic of how we’d treat sentient robots.
Horizon Zero Dawn Complete Edition
|Genre:||Action RPG, Adventure|
|Release Date:||7 August, 2020|
|Average Playtime:||30 hours|
Sony’s award-winning action-adventure game, Horizon Zero Dawn, has made its way to Steam. It has a beautiful open world to explore, with a huge focus on nature versus machines.
The game has, possibly, one of the coolest settings ever. It takes place in the post-apocalyptic United States, set in the 31st century. However, it isn’t your run-of-the-mill zombie scenario.
Humans have regressed back to living in a more primitive style, and split into tribes. The world has been taken over by large robotic creatures, which for the most part are peaceful.
However, in more recent times—the machines are being inflicted with the “Derangement” turning them aggressive. They’re attacking humans, and the situation is getting worse.
Horizon Zero Dawn places you in control of Aloy, a girl who was cast out from one of the game’s tribes. She’s on a journey, seeking down cultists that have been targeting her.
The Steam Version of Horizon Zero Dawn is the Complete Edition of the game. You’ll get all the extra goodies and the frozen wasteland-themed DLC, too.
The game is filled with a gorgeous, varied map filled with diverse environments. The developers even had anthropologists help to portray an accurate Earth that had decayed over a millennium.
This is all backed by a soundtrack that perfectly evokes a fitting, somber feeling throughout. On top of that, the gameplay is fantastic.
As you can expect from an open-world RPG, there are deep levelling systems and new abilities to unlock. The combat is real-time and action-based, which is great at keeping you engaged.
|Release Date:||28 July, 2022|
|Average Playtime:||27 hours|
Something the Digimon series has always had over Pokémon is its stronger story and exploring darker themes. This aspect really comes through and shines in Digimon Survive.
Digimon Survive is a hybrid between a visual novel and a tactical RPG. It combines the best of both genres, and throws you into a mysterious world where your survival depends on your choices.
This game is narrative-driven and perfect if you’re looking for a single-player experience. The art is absolutely gorgeous, the character designs are on point, and they’re all well-fleshed out.
The entire game is based on your decisions. From the story, the bond between the cast of characters, and even the evolution of your partner Digimon.
If you wanted a world to get lost in—Digimon Survive offers a grim, survival story partnered with strategic gameplay to get immersed in.
If you’re a huge fan of the Digimon franchise, this game also takes the series back to its roots. It pursues the darker roots that the original Digimon Adventures Season 1 offered.
You’re following a group of school kids in a foreign world where they’re thrown into dire situations. Even for non-fans of the franchise, this is a great entry point, as the story is completely standalone.
You don’t need to read or be a mega fan of any previous Digimon media. The battle system is a huge change from the usual monster-collecting genre RPGs.
Whilst battles in Survive are still turn-based, they are comparable to games like Final Fantasy Tactics and Fire Emblem.
Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
|Genre:||Action, Adventure, Souls-like|
|Release Date:||15 Nov, 2019|
|Average Playtime:||17 hours|
What better way to spend your solo time than swinging around a lightsaber? Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order is one of the best single-player games on Steam available.
It marks the start of Star Wars’ new golden era, and tells one of the best stories in the franchise’s universe. It follows Cal Kestis, one of the few surviving Jedi left in the entire galaxy.
Cal is constantly being hunted by the Empire, and having to evade their deadly inquisitors. The kicker is, that he is also just a Padawan—a Jedi-in-training, so you’ll have to learn as you go along.
Fallen Order features a combat and progression system akin to the Dark Souls games. You’ll need to execute perfect dodges, and attack at just the right time to defeat your foes.
However, you also get Force powers. You’re able to throw Stormtroopers, and even stop their laser shots in midair. The game’s combat is so satisfying, and the lightsaber handling feels incredible.
Battles in Fallen Order bring about a sense of magic that never quite goes away. Wielding a laser sword in space? Cutting up giant alien spiders and galactic soldiers? Incredible.
Even for non-Star Wars fans, the narrative in Fallen Order is superb. The game is packed with emotional scenes and a rollercoaster story.
This is all further backed by the game’s Metroidvania-inspired design. There are plenty of planets to explore and even revisit to unlock new areas once you learn more Force abilities.
|Developers:||Unknown Worlds Entertainment|
|Release Date:||January 23, 2018|
|Average Playtime:||30 hours|
Horror god, H.P. Lovecraft, once said that the oldest and strongest emotion for mankind is fear of the unknown. This rings true when it comes to Subnautica, and surviving its terrifying ocean.
The game literally explores the depths of the unknown, as you crash-land into the seas of an unknown, alien planet. There’s nothing but ocean for miles, and you’ll need to survive.
The main gameplay loop for Subnautica isn’t much different than your typical survival title. You’ll need to scavenge for resources, hunt down fish for food, and eventually, escape.
Progression comes in the form of crafting better gear, like diving equipment. However, that also means you’ll also need to delve deeper into the ocean—literally.
It also features a rich base-building system. You can build your own houses on the ocean’s floor, where you can store your materials, or even vehicles you craft.
Despite all the fear and terror, Subnautica is just as relaxing and serene. It makes it a great digital escape if you want to unwind and have some alone time.
The game’s environments are gorgeous, filled with beautiful and diverse coral reefs and marine life. There are whole ecosystems for you to discover.
When nighttime creeps in, that’s when the predators come out to play. From alien sharks to extraterrestrial squids, you’ll need to craft weapons to fend them off or play smart to run.
Subnautica has a nice story element behind its style and substance, too. There is an engaging mystery that you’ll uncover whilst you play. What’s wrong with the planet? What are those mysterious structures?
|Genre:||Action, Rogue-like, Bullet Hell|
|Release Date:||October 20, 2022|
|Average Playtime:||10 hours|
Vampire Survivors is the little indie game that could. It had the world in its bat-like claws with its addictive-yet-simple gameplay, and topped the charts as one of Steam’s best single-player titles.
This is a time-based survival title that blends in roguelite elements and minimalistic gameplay. It’s pretty simple, night comes and there’s nowhere to hide.
You play as a survivor, and you need to survive the hordes of enemies coming at you until you inevitably die. Then you start all over again with a new survivor.
This is where the roguelite elements kick in. During rounds, you can collect gold for your next survivor, which unlocks persistent progression.
Your survivors can also level up, which you can use to increase your damage, movement speed or defense. On top of this, there are dozens of different weapons and power-ups you can collect.
The game also has over 20 characters to select from, which you unlock by earning achievements. It offers so much variety, and almost endless possibilities when it comes to builds to try.
Mixed in with the simple gameplay systems, it makes it easy to jump into and learn. The cherry on top (or vampire in this case) is Vampire Survivors is only a few dollars too.
The game is amazing when it comes to bang for your buck. Fighting off vampires requires your full attention, which is why this is a great single-player title. Other players would just be a distraction.
|Genre:||Base Building, Simulation, Strategy|
|Release Date:||October 17, 2018|
|Average Playtime:||64 hours|
If you want a game that you can sink hundreds of hours into – RimWorld is your person. It’s one of the best single-player titles on Steam, and easily top of the survival, colony-simulation genre.
RimWorld is as if Dwarf Fortress took place in space and was made more accessible—and had graphics. The game still has a steep learning curve, but the experience is worth it.
The game has you managing a colony on a new planet. Everything about them is simulated, down to their personality traits and even goals.
It even goes as far as simulating other AI-controlled colonies, climates, biomes, and ecology. The environments in RimWorld feel alive, and there is so much depth to the possible interactions.
This also makes every playthrough of the game different. Maybe, in one of your colonies, your butcher lost their mind during the harsh winter, and they sliced up everybody else.
Or, you might have to resort to cannibalism because supplies were running too low. Even your character’s physical condition down to the limbs and mental health is simulated.
This level of simulation also extends to the NPCs and enemies. It allows for emergent storytelling, and trust me—some of the things you see can be downright horrifying, or even hilarious.
The game is played from a top-down view. There are also different AI “storytellers” to choose from, which will spice up your gameplay. There’s also a huge modding community to explore, too.