This is the second part of a trifecta of feature lists, showcasing popular games from the biggest platforms, that you can get through our marketplace. If you want to check out games from Origin or Uplay, you can do so here.
This time around we’re taking GOG to the chopping block. The rules are the same as last time: I’m going to present you with a list of popular games from the platform.
This is by no means a complete list of great titles unique to GOG. While the platform lacks the sheer quantity of Steam (which, you know, maybe is for the best), it has a lot of good games and is rapidly growing.
The point is to give you an idea of what the people are choosing and explain why. As such, these lists are ultimately very contemporary, and their lifespan is limited.
So without further ado, let’s go(g)!
10. Neverwinter Nights Diamond
~Let it gooooo~
Genre: RPG | Release year: 2010
An oldie but a goodie, and a pretty nice title to start this list with. Neverwinter Nights is the very definition of old school, being based on Dungeons & Dragons, featuring blocky graphics, turn-based combat, isometric perspective and all the traditional staples of old-timey gaming.
The Diamond Edition consists of the base game and all the expansions for it. The GOG release is actually a re-release of the game and has some higher resolution textures and new functionalities that the 2005 version lacked. It would be gracious to call it a proper remaster, but it’s still definitely worth your time, especially if you missed the good old days of RPGs past.
9. Anno 1404
It’s a whole new world of city building
Genre: City Builder | Release year: 2009
Anno is a series of city builders taking the player on a journey through history at various pivotal times in history when architecture has dramatically changed and tasks them with building a sprawling, self-sustaining city. Notably, while the Anno series takes clues from history, it’s not historically accurate like the series such as Europa Universalis would be.
In Anno 1404, the player has to take care of their little fiefdom, first by colonizing islands, then by establishing farms and factories and then managing the tricky and uncertain global trade. With some skill, you can become a true power by trading precious resources like spices or precious gems. An expansion, Venice, is available for the game, which, among others, adds multiplayer, so you might consider getting that as well.
8. S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat
Cheeki breeki all the way
Genre: FPS, Survival Horror | Release year: 2010
Stalker (because god I am not writing the full acronym every time) is a perfect game for a true Slav. It actually runs best on a vodka-cooled PC and is best enjoyed with a side dish of pierogi. And in the true Slavic fashion, it’s tough as nails, almost unapproachable, makes some questionable yet charming design choices, and is utterly atmospheric.
Call of Pripyat is the third and final installment of the series that follows the events after Shadow of Chernobyl. This time you’re not just a random grunt, you’re a military operative, fully equipped to deal with all the terrors of the Zone. As you’ll find out though, nothing can prepare you for this place. You have to carefully manage your resources and hunt for artifacts using different detectors in order to uncover the secrets of this place. It’s difficult, it’s merciless, it’s hella atmospheric, it’s S.T.A.L.K.E.R.
To the cornfield with you
Genre: City Builder | Release year: 2014
We have another city builder, but this one is very different from the Anno series. Whereas normally, city builders are a very chill experience, this one is…opposite of that. In Banished, your small group of peasants is relegated to an obscure, foresty area and you have to survive by building up your small hamlet.
The resource management is crucial to the game as overdeveloping can easily lead to a disaster. Balancing food, water, and wood to build more structures is a careful juggling act, further complicated by the coming winter, that will dwindle your resources and break your spirit. It could technically be considered a precursor to Frostpunk, just with less in-your-face morality.
6. Dying Light
So, guys, we did it!
Genre: FPS | Release year: 2015
Huh. A zombie game. That’s just unusual. I just realized that I’ve been writing these top 10 lists for a while now and rarely do I see a zombie game here. But this one makes sense because while it doesn’t do the zombie genre justice (see my review of State of Decay 2 to hear my musings on the esoteric relationship between zombies and storytelling), it has a very fun multiplayer mode.
Dying Light’s strong suit is the fluid parkour-based gameplay that is somewhat reminiscent of games like Prototype or Assassin’s Creed, but with zombies in it. It also features a day/night cycle radically changing the ways the zombies behave and a multiplayer which takes a page out of the Left 4 Dead book but also kind of Dark Souls’ one and allows you to invade another player’s world and play as a zombie. There’s certainly a lot to like about this game.
5. Mount & Blade: Warband
Divide and conquer
Genre: RPG, RTS | Release year: 2016
Mount & Blade, published by Paradox (a company known for their thing for strategies), is an interesting blend of RPG and RTS where you’ll first create and customize your character and then put them in the role of a general, leading your warband against various historically inspired factions. The interesting thing is that you have full control of your own character and can freely move and attack, but only limited control over your troops.
Warband is a standalone expansion pack which adds several valuable enhancements, like multiplayer (where by necessity the RPG elements are less pronounced), a new rival faction, inspired by the Ottoman Empire, and the option to create your own faction whole-cloth from predetermined building blocks. Something of a blast from the past, but certainly a good game if you like strategy.
4. The Witcher 2
Always two there are
Genre: Action RPG | Release year: 2011
You most likely know of The Witcher 3, but many people don’t realize the humble beginnings of Poland’s most influential export. The original game was, by all accounts, pretty good for its time (and to this day actually remains my favorite part of the series, unpopular opinion, I know), but it was very obscure. It’s The Witcher 2 where the legend truly began.
In contrast to the first game, the combat has been improved upon, with greater emphasis on dodging and jumping around. The character progression has been somewhat reduced, with fewer abilities overall, but giving each of them unique property. The whole thing also became much more balanced without any obvious trap options. The story was of course also expanded upon and first steps towards the full, open world can be seen. It’s somewhat archaic by today’s standards, but it’s nice to see where history was first born.
(Steam Version: GOG Version here)
3. Heroes of Might and Magic: Complete Edition
All the heroes of all the ages
Genre: TTS | Release year: 2007
This one is certainly a very expansive release as it contains all 5 Heroes of Might and Magic titles and includes all their expansions plus some extra stuff like the OST (which is really good, the music in the Heroes series is legendary for being very soothing). Some updates might be missing simply due to the timing of the release, but it’s the most complete library of Heroes games.
Both Heroes 1 and 2 have been updated to run on modern systems, so you can go on a journey back in time and see where the Heroes craze began. Some of these old games are pretty interesting, but the most interesting part is evolutionary through line that peaks at Heroes 3 and then the games try to go in different directions. This one is definitely a value deal.
2. No Man’s Sky
No longer a lie
Genre: Simulator | Release year: 2016 | The year it got good: 2018
No Man’s Sky is a triumphant-success-story silver lining to a great disaster story, about which I’ve already written a lot, so I’ll contain myself. Suffice it to say that No Man’s Sky has initially received a lukewarm reception due to many missing features that were promised.
But as of writing this, it’s not the case. Now you can hop in with your friends, gather resources, Still not a perfect game, but a good one, with a whole lot of content to explore.
1. The Witcher 3
Three there sometimes are
Genre: Action RPG | Release year: 2015
Two Witcher games on one list, that’s a rarity, but also unsurprising for the platform that is GOG. I have already waxed lyrical about the Witcher 3 a lot and more of that is sure to happen (I’m gonna have to develop some creative ways of describing this game). You have of course heard all the praise that has been heaped on this game already.
The Witcher 3 focuses much more on the overarching plot than the previous two games, which makes it only loosely connected to the two previous games, but some characters return and have their own side missions in the game (if they have survived, which a lot of them might not have). Mechanically, it can be described as “The Witcher fully realized”, with the best combat and fully developed open world.
(Steam Version: GOG Version here)
GOG specializes in games that might be slightly older but are certainly classics, specifically for the PC platform.
So a lot of games from GOG sooner or later find their ways to our marketplace and you get some really good deals with us. Now, of course, this requires a degree of skillful maneuvering, but this list should give you a good enough idea about what to look out for.