What are the best survival games on PC? From Scum và DayZ to lớn Ark, here"s our menu of free and Steam games, plus some surprises


Survival games have exploded over the past few years. The Steam charts are filled with all kinds of examples,including classic survival horror gamesand new hardcore survival sims. To help any bewildered adventurers, we’ve gathered together the best survival games lớn help you piông xã và choose which emergent stories & unexpected adventures to undertake.

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There are a great many excellent survival titles out there, a huge percentage of which are unfinished Early Access projects – though there are also plenty of cheap-and-nasty cash-ins. Our guide will help you seek out only the best ones, like a survivor scanning abandoned cupboards for beans.

If you’ve sầu got the grit to outlast the likes of the terrifyingThe Long Darkor the underwater wonder of Subnautica, our picks will help steer you towards the (not so) safe pastures of the best survival games on PC. Whether you lượt thích surviving the horrors of war oryou’re inkhổng lồ the new breed of hunger và disease management games, get ready to endure agony và plenty of pain in these scintillating survival adventures.



Don’t Starve

The most horrifying idea of actual survival is having khổng lồ bởi it on your lonesome. That’s exactly what Don’t Starve sầu makes you vì, as it’s an entirely solo experience. The terror of having to fkết thúc for yourself in the wild is thankfully offset by the lovely Tlặng Burton-style 2D art, và the collection of utterly bizarre creatures that are lurking in this sepia-tone world. Werepigs, Beargers, Deerclopses, & many more absurd monsters roam the land looking khổng lồ make things difficult for you.

Don’t Starve focuses heavily on crafting to lớn make your way through life, and so much of your time is spent harvesting raw materials – just like a crafting game. But rather than crafting houses lượt thích in Rust & Minecraft, thisindie game is all about the tools và contraptions you can make. The Science Machine and Alchemy Engine will become your best friends, before making way for ancient wonders & the art of magic. Like Minecraft, Don’t Starve happily embraces the mad and the mystical, & is all the more enjoyable for it.

If all this sounds wonderful, but you don’t want lớn harvest twigs and dry grass on your own, Don’t Starve sầu Together also lets you play with a friover, và it’s actually one of the best co-op games on PC.


This War of Mine

For all the căng thẳng that some survival games can press on you, nothing compares to the harrowing 2 chiều adventure. As you’ll find out in our This War of Mine đánh giá, the game offers a very different breed of survival. It’s a depiction of a group of civilians’ struggling khổng lồ stay alive in their war-ravaged country. Trapped in a besieged house, pinned down by snipers, và attacked by other survivors looking lớn take what you’ve found, it’s a game of traumatic decisions và life-or-death consequences. It’s the side of conflict that few war games truly deal with.

Each of your randomly-generated survivors have backstories, providing them with abilities for survival. Ex-firemen are fitter và stronger, while those who used lớn cook professionally can now feed the starving. But heading out into the world lớn find the things you need – medicine, ingredients, scrap khổng lồ make beds – could bring you face-to-face with those willing lớn kill. And turning a survivor inkhổng lồ a murderer leads khổng lồ misery, depression, và – if not treated well – suicide.

It’s a bleak existence, & making what seems to lớn be the obvious right decision at one point in time can lead to disastrous conclusions. The end of the war constantly seems like a pipe-dream, & everyone will probably be dead before you get there. If you think you can live with yourself in such dire circumstances, though, this a must-play.


Crsed: FOAD

This free-to-play battle royale started outas Cuisine Royale – a PUBG spoof, but when players kept coming baông chồng, it became apparent that Darkflow Software had found something that’s largely absent across the battle royale games genre: light-hearted fun.

Crsed: FOAD is still all about surviving to the end & outlasting dozens of opponents, but instead of armour you’ll be scrabbling around for colanders và baking trays to protect your fleshy parts from incoming bullets.

Recent updates have sầu embraced the silliness,adding new champions, a new map, flamethrowers, mortars, và motorboats, as well as rebalancing the melee combat. You can now also shoot from vehicles, as well as unlock và improve sầu your champions with secret missions or daily challenges.

Play Crsed: FOADfor free



If you’re after the best crafting survival game out there, look no further than Minecraft. At some point, it seems someone decided survival was all about gruelling punishment, sloth-like progression, and murdering anyone who isn’t you. But before the big survival blow-out on Steam we had Minecraft: a fun, colourful, creative sầu survival sandbox game. Sure, there are zombies that will eat your face, và spiders, skeletons & dragons, but with Minecraft skins, you at least always over up blocky và xinh tươi. No one minds a cartoon monster having you for breakfast.

More importantly, though, the way you survive sầu in Minecraft is entirely up to lớn you. You could build an elaborate fortress và play a defence-style game, fending off the creatures of the night. Or you could craft exciting weaponry & venture out into the most dangerous zones of the world, testing both your mettle and metal. The world is literally endless & filled with amazing natural wonders just begging lớn be explored. Just rethành viên to lớn eat something every now and again, & you’ll be fine.

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We spend so much time focusing on the game’s creative side và its many Minecraft mods, Minecraft maps, và Minecraft seeds, và all the other amazing possibilities out there, we sometimes forget that the vanilla Survival Mode is just as exciting in its own way. And if you really want lớn make an automated mining production line in Survival Mode, don’t let us stop you. Just make sure the creepers don’t put a spanner in your works.



Abandoned in the Norse wilderness with nothing but a loincloth và your wits, you – và up khổng lồ nine other Vikings – must build shelter, forage for food, & steadily build up your strength before heading out in search of glorious battle. The meadows you begin your journey in are relatively safe, but the procedurally generated wilds contain various biomes of escalating difficulty – you do not want lớn stumble into lớn the plains before you’re ready, believe sầu us.

Each one of Valheim’s biomes has its own magnificent boss; once you locate it, summon it, and defeat it, you unlochồng resources và powers that help you progress to lớn the next region. You’ll also trigger increasingly powerful raids on your home base, so it’s vital that you construct a well defended homestead; don’t forget the chimney, or smoke inhalation will get you before that big blue troll does.


ARK: Survival Evolved

Ark isn’t just the best dinosaur survival game you can buy, it’s arguably one of the greachạy thử dinosaur games ever made. After all, prehistoric beasties make everything better. It’s a survival game that fills every edge of the template: punch trees khổng lồ get wood, use wood lớn build shelter, kill animals to find food, inevitably die because you forgot khổng lồ drink water. Yet Ark transcends the typical survival game pattern by including leathery leviathans that both want to lớn hunt and eat you, but with some perseverance, you can also tame và ride. What’s more, cold wars rage between mega tribes as they seek dominance over their world. Master builders push the limits of creation in a survival game. Dedicated players rack up years of playtime.

Everything Ark does is rock-solid. The survival elements may be similar to lớn what you’ve sầu played before, but they’re the bedrochồng for the game’s more ambitious elements (và a strong Ark mods scene). Your character has RPG-like stats, and you can head into the world to hunt sci-fi secrets that offer a little more incentive sầu lớn play rather than just ‘stay alive’.

It’s these various promises that make playing Ark worthwhile: other survival games rely on you being satisfied with making it through the night, whereas Studio Wildcard sets you long-term goals such as ‘tame và ride a T-Rex’. Having a true sense of progression & aims make your time in Ark feel valuable, & that’s something many other survival adventures struggle with. Also, if you’re struggling with the game’s sci-fi-flavoured expansion, our Ark: Aberration tips should help.

The two-part Genesis expansionlaunched its first half in February, & has a heavy focus on exploring simulated regions packed with volcanos, icy mountains & vast underwater biomes. With Ark 2 coming soon, & with Vin Diesel no less, it’ll be exciting to lớn see what new stuff will be in the sequel.



Like many of the survival games in this các mục, Scum is starting out life in Steam Early Access, which means two things: it’s still quite shonky, & there are heaps of features yet to be added lớn the game. But even early into its life there is plenty to lớn enjoy about this detailed survival game set on a maximum security prison islvà.

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What makes it stvà out aước ao its peers is an incredibly fastidious metabolism system which makes Scum a sort of simulation game that fully tracks what you eat, drink, và excrete. Eat many more calories than you’re burning off & you’ll get fatter, eat less than what you’re burning off and you’ll have no energy & gradually thua trận weight.

But it’s a lot more complicated than that: you’ll have sầu lớn watch your vitamin levels, stomach, intestine, bladder, và colon volume, and ensure that you eat well in advance of needing energy as it takes time for your body to lớn process anything you put inlớn it. Scum puts the hunger & thirst mechanics of other survival games lớn shame. There are rewards for taking care of your body toàn thân, too, as a fitter characters giảm giá khuyến mãi more melee damage, run faster, and possess better weapon handling than their emaciated or overweight counterparts.

The result is a survival game where surviving is more important than amassing an arsenal of military-grade gear. Although once you’ve sầu figured out how lớn take care of your toàn thân you still have sầu endgame goals such as exploring high security areas, improving your supply of guns, & dabbling with PvP.. If you need help with any of that kiểm tra out our top Scum tips,và if that’s not quite enough help there are some very useful Scum admin commands for you, too.



The one that kicked it all off. This shuffling undead treat remains one of the best zombie games and survival games. In other words, it’s the king of zombie survival games. By today’s standards, DayZ could even be considered one of the leanest virtual survivors, with barely any crafting lớn speak of, và no objectives beyond staying alive. Food và water are vitally important, and getting sick can quickly kill you should you fail khổng lồ pay attention to your symptoms. Walking without shoes cuts and infects your feet, & blood transfusions of the wrong type will see you slip away for good.

If you’re nội dung with fighting against disease, bodily functions, & zombies who occasionally phase through walls, you’ll get to DayZ’s best feature: exploration. The world of Chernarus is a Soviet wastelvà, and Bohemia has captured that Eastern Bloc atmosphere with the towns and villages around the bản đồ. DayZ’s forests feel genuinely life-lượt thích rather than being man-made imitations, while there’s a true sense of isolation out in the wilderness.

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It’s best played with a friover or two; a camping trip where things could go horribly wrong. And by ‘horribly wrong’, we mean being captured by a gang of bandits who will force feed you bleach và make off with your can-opener. So yeah, proceed with extreme caution.


Conan Exiles

With the huge success of games like DayZ, it was only a matter of time before a licensed IP decided khổng lồ give the survival genre a try. Taking its cue from one of the best PC games you can play right now in Dark Souls 3, Conan Exiles shunts you into the Hyborian Age as everyone’s favourite barbarian looks to lớn duff people up and avoid death.

The set up is largely familiar – grow crops, build settlements, club enemies khổng lồ death – but Conan has a back-of-the-box-bullet point that none of the competition can claim: human sacrifice. Should you be able lớn wrestle someone khổng lồ an altar & butcher them, you can invoke the favour of the gods and shift the balance of power your way. That quality concept sets Conan Exiles apart from the paông xã.



This gryên ổn tale of endurance has become infamous for its naked men – but it’s not the kích thước of a man’s particulars that’s impressive sầu about Facepunch’s survival game (& we all know that doesn’t matter anyway… right?). No, it’s the forts that players are able to, ahem, erect. Rust’s strong point is construction: as you gather materials from its wilderness, you can begin to lớn lay down a variety of items in a Sims-like manner, creating your perfect rural retreat by slotting together floors, walls, staircases, và windows.

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While there are many servers where the traditional shoot-on-sight mentality exists, Rust has plenty of havens for those looking for a more civilised lifestyle. You can find player-created towns, complete with attempts at government, trading, và even prisons. It’s one of the nicest reminders that if people pull together and tóm tắt their resources, fantastic achievements can be made.

Rust underwent a massive sầu overhaul that saw most of the original game scrapped in favour of a slightly new approach và completely new base code. The change ripped out quite a lot of the game’s core features, such as zombies và rad towns, but over time they’ve gradually been reapplied alongside new ideas. Rust remains one of the most played games on Steam, và if you’re one of them, be sure lớn check out these useful Rust console commands.



With its dreamy underwater setting – partly created by its community – and compelling gameplay loop, Subnautica is one of the best exploration survival games on PC. Subnautica is much more hopeful & relaxing than many survival adventures. Sure, you’re a lonely man lost at sea on an alien planet, but it’s a game all about terraforming your new environment và making unfamiliar ground your trang chính.

The art direction helps push the idea of hope trang chủ, with bright and shiny technologies, beautifully xanh oceans, and schools of tropical fish filling your vision at every turn. You explore the ocean depths in your submarine, searching for new materials in marine trenches & aước ao coral reefs. And when you’ve found everything you need, you can begin khổng lồ construct bases on the ocean floor.

The game’s survival elements include the food and water requirements that most games in the genre vày, but there’s obviously a more pressing issue in Subnautica: oxyren. You can’t breathe sea water, so your oxygene levels và consumption have sầu to be on your mind at all times. Seeing as you’re continually threatened with the prospect of drowning, you really should read our Subnautica guide lớn ensure you squeeze every last drop out of your diver’s life. Every survival game has the ominous shadow following you around, but here it’s simply good old O2.



Astroneer is one of the best games to come from Steam’s Early Access platform: solid at launch, but transformed inkhổng lồ something truly special after two years of consistent content updates và polishing. In Astroneer you crash lvà on an alien planet and carve sầu out an existence by developing your life tư vấn pod inlớn a fully fledged base replete with vehicles, power sources, & laboratories.

Of course, as in all the best survival games, you’ll need a lot of resources lớn start building the best base modules, and lớn vị that you’ll need khổng lồ explore your planet hoovering up rare crafting materials và shaping the terrain lớn unearth resource-rich caverns.

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Astroneer isn’t quite as bleak as most other survival games, despite being just as treacherous. There’s a gorgeous low-poly art style that promises lớn soothe you as you crest every new horizon, & then there’s the fact that you can have your pals join you at any time thanks to lớn drop-in/drop-out co-op. There’s a sense of progression in Astroneer, too, as you can eventually blast off & start colonising the other six planets in your solar system, providing tangible goals for you to work towards rather than mere existence.


The Long Dark

This chilly adventure is similar to lớn most of the games mentioned above sầu, but with something of the best horror games in it. Though unlượt thích other titles on this các mục, The Long Dark has a fairly interesting story mode (called Wintermute) lớn sink your teeth inlớn.

Set in the bitter cold of northern Canadomain authority, The Long Dark trades zombies for bears, & tropical islands for deadly snow drifts. Mother Nature is your true adversary here, và khổng lồ combat her you’ll need to keep your calorie count up, your body toàn thân hydrated, và a flame roaring whenever you curl up for the night.

The stylish aesthetic makes it quite an arty game, but don’t let that fool you into thinking this is something that slows the pace and forces you to lớn think long and hard about what you’ve done. The Long Dark is a true, challenging survival game with real bite.

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That’s it, you’ve survived! Whether avoiding the terrors of the deep seaor taking on hostile Minecraft mobs, the above titles aren’t just deliciously tense – they’re some of the best PC games available. As you wait forthe best upcoming PC games to hit Steam, why not get familiar with some of the survival sensations above sầu. Just rethành viên khổng lồ keep a calm head và take regular deep breaths. Do that, and survival is assured.

Chuyên mục: Game Online