The best survival games on PC and console

SURVIVAL games are often mixed, but these are the very best.

The genre has become somewhat oversaturated in recent years thanks to YouTubers’ obsession with them.

These survival games will keep you playing for hours once you dive in.


These survival games will keep you playing for hours once you dive in.Credit: 505 games

It took off in a big way in the 2010s, and apparently every indie developer on the planet wanted to try it.

That means there are plenty of cheap and horrible survival/crafting games for you to try.

However, every now and then a glowing beacon emerges from the rubble, a truly awesome survival game that has unique ideas and competent mechanics.

Finding these gems among all the junk can often be difficult, so we’re here to bring you the very best survival games across all platforms.

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Whether you own a PlayStation, Xbox, Switch or PC, you can play these games to your heart’s content.

This war of mine

We’ll start off with something pretty dejected, but it’s the perfect example of the amazing stories the survival genre can tell.

Many survival games start you off with very little but slowly grow to have an abundance of everything you need. However, not This War of Mine.

In this game you survive in a war torn world and it is your responsibility to go out and search for the things you need to keep everyone alive.

Resources are always scarce and it forces you to make some extremely tough moral choices to stay alive.

Don’t starve

Your goal is right there in the title, and it’s certainly a task easier said than done.

Don’t Starve has an overwhelming sense of style. The weird and wonderful world you’re thrown into doesn’t make any sense and doesn’t get any better if you sink into madness.

It’s an extremely tiring game, but the world is so immersive that you want to delve deeper and deeper. Now you can even do it with friends in Don’t Starve Together.

Ark: Survival Evolved

You will be amazed how even the most boring games can be turned into something special by adding dinosaurs.

The survival mechanics in Ark are fun, but nothing special in themselves.

However, when you add the ability to fight, tame, and ride dinosaurs, all that mediocrity falls by the wayside.


Alongside DayZ, Minecraft is responsible for the explosion in popularity of the survival genre.

Although many see it more as a building game, the survival mechanics are still extremely robust.

Plus, with recent updates adding things like The Warden, an almost unkillable monster that stalks you in the deepest caves, staying alive is harder than ever.

You’ve probably tried it at least once, but you can’t have a list like this without mentioning them.


In most survival games, you explore the world around you to gather resources and build an empire. So what to do when there is no world to discover?

In Raft you’re floating on a tiny raft in the middle of the ocean and you have to collect floating resources to survive.

Eventually you will find land, but you won’t be able to stay long. Growing your floating home is a unique feeling.


This is not a survival game in the traditional sense. Rather than directly controlling a character roaming the world, you play the game more like a city builder.

It’s your job to keep as many people alive as possible in a frozen village as post-apocalyptic conditions slowly lower the global temperature.

It is an extremely difficult game to master and you will be faced with difficult choices such as B. whether you want to introduce child labor or not to ensure the smooth process.

fringe world

Rimworld is another game where you take on more of a management role as you control your small group of survivors.

You’ll soon learn the true meaning of the term “enemy terrain” as you contend with wild animals, scavengers, natural disasters and more as you build your base.

It’s a deceptively deep game that keeps tabs on the mental and physical states of all your survivors as they inevitably begin to deteriorate.


Slightly less punishing (unless you want to play in Master mode), Terraria is more about exploration and adventure.

While it may seem like a 2D Minecraft game on the surface, it’s actually a very deep RPG experience.

There might not be any great quests or plans, but you’ll level up from boss to boss, unlocking new resources to upgrade your gear and unlocking new areas of the world to explore along the way.

Plus, it runs great even on the most underpowered laptops.


If you like DayZ but don’t really care about zombies or military elements, then Rust is the perfect place for you.

While the community can be a little toxic at times, if you jump into Rust with the right servers, you can have some of the most fulfilling multiplayer experiences available in gaming.

You can band together and build huge bases, go out and ambush other players, or wait for enemies to come from all corners of the world to try and take you down.


Even the very best games in the survival genre lack a certain level of polish, but not Subnautica.

You’d easily mistake this for a triple-A release, nice as it looks, and there’s a lot of substance behind all that style.

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The underwater setting makes it stand out from the crowd immediately, but it goes so much deeper (literally) than it first appears, and you’ll always find new areas to explore.

In a genre with so much junk, Subnautica shows the absolute pinnacle of what can be achieved with a unique idea and a capable team.

Written by Ryan Woodrow on behalf of GOOD LUCK AND HAVE FUN.

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