Best single-player games 2024 - top titles for playing solo

Kratos stands in gold armor at the entrance to a fire-lit temple
(Image credit: Sony Santa Monica)

The best single-player games offer deep experiences that take advantage of the interactivity at the heart of video games to deliver personalized stories that you won't forget. 

These games come in a wide range of different types. Below, you'll find many of the best RPGs (role-playing games) as well as some of the best story games and even one of the best horror games. This is because the best single-player games span a wide range of different genres. However, whether you prefer fantastical quests or sci-fi epics, all of the games on our list are exceptional when it comes to drawing you in with their worlds and characters. 

As fun as it can be to adventure with friends in the best co-op games, sometimes it's preferable to dispense with pesky interlopers and enjoy a game in a one-on-one setting. Here at TechRadar Gaming, we know our way around video games. We've spent thousands of hours playing the top single-player titles, all to help you save time when choosing your next great adventure. Read on to find out more.

Best single-player games 2024

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Cinematic shot of player on horse charging mounted enemy in Elden Ring

(Image credit: Bandai Namco)
Tarnished

Reasons to avoid

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Empty List
Why we love it

FromSoftware has been slowly carving out a space as absolute masters of their craft over the last two decades, culminating in Elden Ring, the studio's most ambitious work to date. It's essentially an open-world take on the tried and tested formula found in Dark Souls, with heaps more build variety and freedom of exploration. Truly a modern classic.

Available on: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC

Elden Ring has only gone from strength to strength since launching back in 2022. Thanks to some clever updates, and the arrival of the Shadow of the Erdtree expansion, there's no doubt in our minds that Elden Ring is one of the greatest games ever made.

What makes Elden Ring so special is how it takes the formula we all know and love from games like Dark Souls and Bloodborne, and blends it with a modern open-world. Exploration is seamless, with players able to slowly carve out a path through the Lands Between, taking down all manner of bosses along the way. Thanks to some truly brilliant art-direction, many of Elden Ring's vistas are genuinely jaw-dropping. Even more so in the DLC expansion.

While Elden Ring could also be described as a multiplayer experience, most players take it on solo. If you need a bit of extra help on a particularly tough boss, or just want to pull some friends in however, there's plenty of options to open up your game to more players.

Hades key art showing Zagreus surrounded by rock snake creatures

(Image credit: Supergiant Games)

10. Hades

A stylish, speedy and sexy escape from the underworld
Why we love it

Hades isn't just an action RPG masterclass, it's also an affecting story that grapples with difficult themes of loss, family and fatherhood. The gripping boss fights will reel you in, but its Zagreus' emotional journey that'll keep you invested.

Available on: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PC

Developed by Supergiant Games, makers of Bastion, Hades is the story of Zagreus, son Hades, of the Greek god of the dead. Tired of his dad, our hero attempts to escape from the Underworld to reach Mount Olympus, with the occasional bit of help from the Olympians themselves. Unfortunately, this is easier said than done, as dear old dad is hell bent on stopping him - often with lethal consequences. But, since Zagreus cannot be killed, there's nothing to stop our plucky protagonist from trying again in this roguelike action RPG.

Hades is incredibly focused on you as the player. The RPG's story revolves around your protagonist's repeated attempts to break free from the underworld, offering new snippets of dialogue depending on who you choose to interact with. In true roguelike fashion, Zagreus' every death sets you back to the beginning, forcing you to traverse another gauntlet through the underworld after spending some time back home licking your wounds. The game also allows you to customize your fighting style and uncover the story at your own pace, making for a deeply personal single-player experience.

Judy from Cyberpunk 2077 leaning on a table in Lizzie's Bar

(Image credit: CD Projekt Red)

9. Cyberpunk 2077

A gritty sci-fi masterpiece
Why we love it

Cyberpunk 2077, like any good sci-fi, uses its story to ask big questions about our own world and the failings of our society. In this gritty RPG, high-octane action and dark, thought-provoking themes go hand in hand.

Available on: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and PC

Cyberpunk 2077 is a far cry from the buggy mess it was at launch. Thanks to a wealth of updates and patches, the game is now in excellent condition, offering an immersive sci-fi experience where you can tailor your character to fit your playstyle. Patch 2.0, completely overhauled character customization, allowing you to play anything from a bullet-deflecting cyborg ninja to a powerful hacker who can explode enemies with their mind. 

The game has an engrossing story to tell, too, which grapples with dark themes centered around personal autonomy and the dangers of capitalist excess. The game's expansion, Phantom Liberty, also adds a spy thriller to the mix, as well as the gravitas of renowned actor Idris Elba, who plays a key character in the expansion's storyline. 

Cloud, Tifa and Aerith stare at the Planetarium

(Image credit: Square Enix)
Why we love it

Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth puts storytelling first. Whether it's the tear-jerking dialogue, impeccable voice acting, or cinematic spectacle, Square Enix's RPG tells its tale with courage and boldness.

Available on: PlayStation 5

Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth manages to both be bursting with side content whilst also maintaining a constant focus on its gripping main storyline. This feat alone would grant it consideration for our best single-player games list. However, what Rebirth does that few other RPGs manage is that it leads with its characters, whose well-realized and deep personalities shine from Rebirth's every surface.

The second act of the Final Fantasy 7 Remake trilogy, Rebirth follows the story of Cloud Strife and friends as they attempt to stop Sephiroth and the evil Shinra Corporation from destroying the world. Improving on its processor in every way, Rebirth boasts slick but pausable real-time combat and explorable open-world zones. There's also a mind-boggling number of mini-games, including a deeply compelling collectible card game. If you want a dense, rewarding RPG experience, then Rebirth is the game for you.

Karlach brooding against a blue stone background, with a huge axe strapped to their back

(Image credit: Larian Studios)
Your own persional Dungeons & Dragons campaign
Why we love it

Baldur's Gate 3 is a sprawling fantasy adventure experienced from the comfort of your living room. Open-ended and rewarding, the RPG boasts a huge amount of replay value which keeps you coming back again and again.

Available on: PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S, and PC

Baldur's Gate 3 stands as one of the best single-player games around, offering a sprawling campaign full of exploration, moral dilemmas, and challenging turn-based combat. Set in the well-established fantasy world of Dungeons & Dragons, Baldur's Gate 3 allows you to blaze your own trail through its fleshed-out setting, offering a degree of player agency seldom seen in gaming.

Larian Studios' huge RPG can be challenging, but the payoff is well worth the effort. You'll meet a memorable cast of characters, brought to life by stellar voice acting and motion capture. You'll delve into forbidden dungeons and journey across a gorgeous fantasy world as you find yourself embroiled in a plot that could bring the Forgotten Realms to its knees. For an in-depth look, check out our Baldur's Gate 3 review.

Link faces down a Sky Island Guardian

(Image credit: Nintendo)
Why we love it

Tears of the Kingdom encourages you to find lateral solutions to problems. The game doesn't care how you jumped across that ravine, only that you did. The details are up to you and the game's powerful object crafting systems.

Available on: Nintendo Switch

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom offers a breezy yet deceptively complex single-player adventure, full of exploration, problem-solving, and fierce battles. A worthy successor to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Tears of the Kingdom builds on the mechanics introduced in the first game, rewarding players for creative use of the environment and for pursuing unorthodox solutions to the game's puzzles. 

Tears of the Kingdom doubles down on this by adding a building mechanic that allows you to fuse items together and construct buildings, weapons, and even vehicles from items in the environment around you. Tears of the Kingdom also places a greater emphasis on verticality, starting on a beautiful sky island. As you might expect, the game also boasts rich environmental storytelling, supported by a simple, yet bittersweet narrative at the title's heart. Our Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom review has all the details if you want a closer look.

Miles and Peter swing towards a giant Sand-Man

(Image credit: Insomniac Games)
Why we love it

Marvel's Spider-Man 2 is a true comic book epic, setting up high, dramatic stakes worthy of the genre. With skillful pacing and storytelling, the game gradually turns up the heat, making its climactic setpieces and dramatic spectacles feel earned and rewarding. 

Available on: PlayStation 5

Marvel's Spider-Man 2 is one of the best single-player games to arrive on PlayStation all year. The game deftly captures the playfulness at the heart of the Spider-Man fantasy, offering fast-paced combat, witty quips, and gripping interpersonal drama. Contrary to previous installments, Marvel's Spider-Man and Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales, Spider-Man 2 allows you to play as two protagonists, alternating between Peter Parker and Miles Morales. 

By having two main characters, Spider-Man 2 allows for a gripping interplay where different approaches to the superhero lifestyle play out across the story. What's more, we see a darker side of Peter Parker thanks to the appearance of Venom, an alien symbiote that has a negative influence on him - an influence the rest of the cast has to contend with in no small way.

A tag team attack from Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth, with Ichiban wearing scuba gear

(Image credit: Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio)
Why we love it

Scratch Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth's colorful exterior and you'll find an expertly crafted combat system that allows you to meaningfully customize your characters. Add the game's tear-jerking story and compelling side missions and you've got one of the most generous games out there.

Available on: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC

Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth follows the story of Ichiban Kasuga on his quest to find his long-lost biological mother and the story of Kazuma Kiryu, a legendary figure in the Yakuza who battles with his own regrets. Following on from Yakuza: Like a Dragon, Infinite Wealth improves on its predecessor in every respect. The highs are higher, the lows are lower and the minigames are wackier - all of which add up to make Infinite Wealth one of the best single-player games of the year so far.

The game contains multitudes. A deep, emotionally resonant story about loss and found family is punctuated by moments of zany absurdity while the game boasts a turn-based combat system that puts many of the best JRPGs to shame. Infinite Wealth offers a huge payoff for long-time fans without alienating newcomers, telling a relatable story amongst the chaos.

Arthur Morgan holding a pistol and a rifle, walking through town. A horse cart sits in the background

Red Dead Redemption 2  (Image credit: Rockstar games)

3. Red Dead Redemption 2

Go West
Why we love it

Red Dead Redemption 2 wholly encapsulates the bittersweet nostalgia, high adventure and grit at the heart of the Western genre. Against the backdrop of the frontier, the game's characters are pushed to their limits, leading to deeply emotional and rewarding storytelling.

Available on: PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S, and PC

Red Dead Redemption 2 tells the story of Arthur Morgan, a member of the notorious Van Der Linde gang, hanging on at the tail-end of the Wild West era. As you embody Arthur, you get to know him and the people around him. Eventually, you'll be immersed to the point that you feel real affection for each character - no list of the best single-player games could be complete without it. 

Red Dead Redemption 2 will keep you busy. Between story missions, mini-games, activities, and side quests, you will find yourself sinking plenty of hours into this title without even noticing it. From stagecoach robberies to bank heists, there's plenty to keep you occupied as you experience the final days of the frontier.

A close up of Saga Anderson against sunset mountains

(Image credit: Remedy Entertainment)
Why we love it

Alan Wake 2 isn't just genre-defining, it's also willing to push the boundaries of the video game medium to create a truly memorable experience. From live-action segments to musical setpieces, here's one horror game that'll keep you on your toes.

Available on: PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S and PC

Thanks to a gripping story and devastatingly effective art style, this exemplar of survival horror is easily one of the best single-player games of recent years. The game follows the interweaving stories of FBI investigator Saga Anderson and beleaguered writer Alan Wake as they attempt to unravel the dark forces that assail their worlds. 

The title skillfully combines horror, mystery, and action elements, all framed within a narrative so twisty that it might as well be a corkscrew. What's more, you can switch between protagonists as you wish, playing the story at your own pace and in the order you'd prefer. If you've not played the original Alan Wake, don't be put off - the title is very accessible for newcomers. As TRG staff writer Elie Gould said in their review, the game has "everything you could want from a blockbuster horror title."   

Kratos holds a head up to a giant serpent God

(Image credit: Sony Interactive Entertainment)
Why we love it

While the first game was undoubtedly more impactful, God of War Ragnarok benefits from having its characters more firmly rooted and familiar to its players. The story is grand and sweeping, concerned with the end of the world, but it's the smaller connections between Kratos and his allies that shine through.

Available on: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4

God of War Ragnarok is the latest adventure involving everyone's favourite angry dad Kratos, and his master archer son Atreus. This time around, the gang is trying to foil a devilish plot by Odin to bring about Ragnarok, as foretold in ancient prophecy. Along the way, Kratos must ally with enemies, forge new friendships, and hunt down powerful artefacts to help his son rally a new army. 

As single player games go, you can't do much better than God of War Ragnarok. It's a seriously meaty experience, with a story that runs over 30 hours, with plenty of side content to keep you busy. As expected, the game is absolutely beautiful, with a large variety of different realms to visit and explore. Combat has been beefed up, as has the enemy variety, which ranged from tiny poisonous lizards to giant trolls and serpents.

Thanks to post-launch content, the individual stories of each main character are also wrapped up. There really is a lot on offer here, so be sure to check out Kratos' latest adventure for a fantastic singleplayer experience.

Best single-player games: FAQs

A group of cowboys ride across a grassy plain as the sun sets in the background

(Image credit: Rockstar Games)

Which game is best to play alone

Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth is a perfect game to play alone. Full of colorful characters, meaningful story beats, and deep combat, the latest Yakuza game offers a huge breadth of different experiences.

That said, we also strongly recommend Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth and Red Dead Redemption 2. The former is a fantastical, character-driven story that addresses themes of environmentalism and identity through a stylish, theatrical lens. The latter, by contrast, is a gritty, down-to-earth tale about survival in the Wild West. Both are exceptional titles in their own right, standing amongst some of the best single-player games available at the moment.

How popular are single-player games?

Single-player games remain wildly popular. In a survey of nearly 9000 consumers, it was found that 57% preferred single-player titles while only 22% explicitly preferred multiplayer games. 

Here at TechRadar Gaming, we highly recommend the best single-player games to anyone looking for a more personal gaming experience. Baldur's Gate 3 is fantastic in single-player mode, offering a meticulously crafted fantasy adventure. If you're looking for something more grounded, however, we strongly recommend Alan Wake 2 - a breathtaking horror game that'll leave you with chills.

How we made our best single-player games list

This list of the best single-player games was curated to show off the breadth and depth of experiences on offer for players looking to fly solo. Not every game on this list will be to every player's taste, but gems from almost every genre are represented here in some form; from pulse-pounding action titles to chilling horror games. 

These games are best-in-class examples of their respective genres. We're confident that, no matter your palate, you'll find something on our list to suit you.

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Cat Bussell
Staff Writer

Cat Bussell is a Staff Writer at TechRadar Gaming. Hailing from the crooked spires of London, Cat is an experienced writer and journalist. As seen on Wargamer.com, TheGamer.com, and Superjumpmagazine.com, Cat is here to bring you coverage from all corners of the video game world. An inveterate RPG maven and strategy game enjoyer, Cat is known for her love of rich narratives; both story-driven and emergent.

With contributions from