Okay, let's get something out of the way. Yes, a lot of the console games I'm going to talk about are available on some sort of 3rd party emulator, but the article is entirely focused on legal ports of the game. I know that there will be tons of people point and saying this game or that can, in fact, be played on PC, but now we're clear on the point of this piece. Many players like to celebrate when their platform of choice sees the release of a fantastic exclusive that's only available for those who own said platform. It's a way to uplift your console of choice and helps showcase why it's the best and most worthwhile platform to adopt.
That being said, in reality, it's unfortunate that many people are left out of the experience and are forced to either buy a second console or just let the game pass them by. Throughout the years we've seen games lose exclusivity and ultimately make their way to other platforms. Some of these games include Mass Effect, Final Fantasy, and more. Not all games are given this treatment however and some are simply stranded to a single platform or console manufacturer until the end of time. Let's now take a look at 15 console masterpieces that PC will never have. We'll also take a look at 15 PC exclusives missing on consoles. Maybe in due time some of these games don't belong on this list.
30 Missing On Consoles: Frostpunk
Frostpunk is an interesting combination of genres and it just so happened to work out. It's a city-building survival game that released in 2018, and within its first 3 days sold over 250,000 copies. Frostpunk didn't only sell well, it reviewed better than expected.
Critics enjoyed the blending of genres and its visual design, as well as strategy-based gameplay, were what set it near the top of its pack.
Usually, city-building games are seen as a genre that never makes the leap to consoles. With the recent port of City: Skylines to multiple console platforms it seems that anything is possible.
29 Masterpiece Not On PC: Metroid Prime
Nintendo fans across the world are currently salivating at the prospect of a new Metroid Prime 4 trailer. The game's been announced, but the only information known is the title. Heck, no one even knows who's developing the game. It will be an entry in a surprisingly loved and cherished sub-franchise. No one thought a 3rd person Metroid game would work, let alone developed by Retro Studios. It turned out to be the start of a trilogy Nintendo diehards fell in love with. The chances of getting the trilogy on the Nintendo Switch are slim, what makes you think it would ever come to the PC?
28 Missing On Consoles: Magic: The Gathering Arena
Check this list in 6 months and this game will probably be on consoles, but for the time being its beta is only available on PC. Magic the Gathering used to release an annual video game version of their massively popular trading card game, but with the success of Hearthstone, they decided to take a living card game approach. MTG: Arena is simply Magic the Gathering with all of Hearthstones bells, whistles, and hopefully qualities. You can almost guarantee a mobile release, but Wizards of the Coast may end up sticking to just those two platforms. Let's all hope not.
27 Masterpiece Not On PC: Uncharted 2
Now, technically any of the Uncharted games could have ended up on this list considering they're all PlayStation exclusives developed by Naughty Dog. Uncharted 2 makes the list since it's often regarded as the best in the series by a fair amount of fans, though it's a very contentious argument between all 4 mainline entries. Thankfully for PC players, they're not entirely without an Uncharted-like experience on their platform. Though the two franchises have many differences, the rebooted Tomb Raider entries definitely scratch that Indiana Jones itch if you don't own a PlayStation console.
26 Missing On Console: Eve Online
One of the only other games that can hold a candle to World of Warcraft in terms of longevity and relevance in the MMO world is Eve Online. For as big a game as Eve Online is, your chances of a random person naming or recognizing it are surprisingly low.
Eve Online has a very hardcore audience of players and is known for some of the craziest online events.
If you're not familiar, one look at the game will show you exactly why it will never come to consoles. The systems in place are hard enough to get familiar with on mouse and keyboard, let alone a controller.
25 Masterpiece Not On PC: Red Dead Redemption
Rockstar is notorious for not having the best relationship with PC players despite the obsessive modding community their games always seem to muster up. Red Dead Redemption has never managed to make its way over to PC despite its sequel's happening in 2018. Western games aren't necessarily a genre of game that every publisher is attacking, so it's real shame PC players haven't had the chance to experience arguably the best Western video game ever released. Here's hoping Red Dead Redemption 2 makes it's way over to PC sooner than later.
24 Missing On Console: Company Of Heroes
Company of Heroes was what would have happened if Starcraft and Call of Duty had a mixed video game child. It's considered one of the greatest military real-time strategy games of all-time. Many consider it to be the gold standard when it comes authentic military real-time strategy games. This will be mentioned with every RTS game in this list, but controls for RTS games originally designed for PC have an impossible task of translating over to a console controller. Don't look for a surprise Company of Heroes remake/rerelease to make its way over to consoles.
23 Masterpiece Not On PC: Super Mario 64
Super Mario 64 is a game that has become synonymous with the illegal ROM community on PC. Though there are plenty of ways to illegally play Super Mario 64 on PC, it isn't the most authentic way to experience one of the most important games of all-time. Super Mario 64 was responsible in many ways for the push of video games from 2D to 3D. It showcased what was possible when developers took the risk and dipped their toes in uncharted waters. Super Mario 64 thankfully received a spiritual sequel in Super Mario Odyssey on the Nintendo Switch in 2017.
22 Missing On Console: DOTA 2
A genre of game that has as hard of a time translating over to consoles as much as real-time strategy games are the multiplayer online battle arena genre. Defense of the Ancients 2, most commonly referred to as DOTA 2, is the sequel to the game that birthed the MOBA genre, DOTA. Though it's not talked about as much as League of Legends, it's also extremely profitable and boasts a diehard audience full of millions of players. Though Smite has successfully brought MOBAs to consoles, DOTA 2 is a little more involved, features the classic PC RPG perspective, and doesn't seem like a fit for them in the slightest.
21 Masterpiece Not On PC: Legend Of Zelda: Majora's Mask
The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask released only 2 years after the highly-lauded The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, thanks in large part to running on the same exact engine as its predecessor. The time travel aspects, as well as the impending doom really gives the player a true sense of urgency. It's amazing that Nintendo managed to release not only arguably the two best Legend of Zelda games ever, but really two of the best games ever made and released them within two years of each other. It's simply a game that every gamer must play no matter what.
20 Missing On Console: Papers, Please
Papers, Please is a clever puzzle game that revolves around whether or not you'll let people into the country. It tries to trick the player and you must try your hardest not to be duped by those trying to manipulate you in exchange for a new life.
It's always interesting when you can see just how clever or gullible you are.
This game has won plenty of awards and even released on the often forgot PlayStation handheld, the PlayStation Vita. A console port wouldn't be surprising, but it's likeliest landing spot if it ever was ported would probably be the Nintendo Switch.
19 Masterpiece Not On PC: Bloodborne
Normally FromSoftware titles find their home on PC. That's where the modding community often finds neat ways to make the game funnier, or simply just run smoother. Bloodborne, unlike their other Souls games, was published by PlayStation. That means that PlayStation owns the rights to the franchise as well as the right to keep it as an exclusive title. Unfortunately, if you only play games on PC you'll never be able to experience the chaotic speed of Bloodborne, but thankfully Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, is right around the corner.
18 Missing On Console: Starcraft II
Starcraft II is often considered the greatest real-time strategy game of all-time. Players across the world can't get enough of Blizzard's hectic franchise. South Koreans have even gone as far as to declare it their national sport. Starcraft II is a game that literally can't be played competitively with a controller. The amount of speed, dexterity, and twitch movement required is impossible to achieve if you're using anything other than a keyboard and mouse. If you're a console gamer wanting to play Starcraft II, just try and find other desires.
17 Masterpiece Not On PC: God Of War
Now, we're talking of course about 2018's Game of the Year frontrunner, and not the early franchise starter, God of War. Sony Santa Monica managed to take a beloved but dated franchise and turn it into a brand new award darling that left people speechless. It's one thing to soft reboot a franchise in order to build renewed interest. It's a complete other to reinvent what people expect a game in the franchise to feel, look, or play like while still staying true to the themes and characters fell in love with to begin. Do your best to grab yourself a PS4 as soon as possible, because not even the gods can bring it to PC.
16 Missing On Console: Age Of Empires II
Though Age of Empires II is a fantastic game, the reason these types of games never make their way to console is often due to the fact that the gameplay and controls can't translate to a controller. Real-time strategy games have always had an issue coming over to console. At their core, they're designed and developed to work fluently with a keyboard and mouse. These games often revolve around multitasking and moving around quickly. Unless Age of Empires takes the Civilization Revolution approach, console players shouldn't hold their breath waiting for it.
15 Masterpiece Not On PC: Halo: Master Chief Collection
Though an announcement about this collection coming to PC has been rumored for years at this point, Microsoft hasn't really shown a blistering interest in bringing it over to PC. That being said, don't be surprised if the Halo: Master Chief Collection makes its way over to keyboard and mouse in the next couple of years.
Halo is a franchise that PC players have been clamoring for since the franchise began.
The MCC is a great bundle of the series that allows players ease of use and efficiency when trying to play each of the Halo mainline games.
14 Missing On Console: Doki Doki Literature Club
This may seem like an odd entry to include, but Doki Doki Literature Club is considered one of the scarier games of the past decade. Many of the mechanics used towards the later stages of the story wouldn't be viable on a console, so it seems like a port is very unlikely. Doki Doki is a game with plenty of twists and turns that it leaves the player on the edge of their seats. It tackles real mental health issues in a game initially presented as a dating simulator but quickly shows you that it's much deeper than that.
13 Masterpiece Not On PC: Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
Often lauded as the greatest video game of all-time, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time doesn't need any introduction. In many ways, it revolutionized what people thought could be done in a video game. It also helped showcase what was possible in the shift from 2D to 3D game design. Fans have been clamoring for a port of the 3DS remake on the Nintendo Switch, but chances seem slim. Whether it eventually makes its way over to Switch or not, one thing is certain, Nintendo will never bring it to the PC.
12 Missing On Console: World Of Warcraft
It's 2018, and people are still playing World of Warcraft. When a game revolutionizes a genre you can only assume it will have some staying power, but even then Blizzard's massive hit stands alone at the top.
World of Warcraft has managed to retain an extensive player base through new content and a willingness to listen to feedback.
We've seen massively multiplayer online games shift from the traditional sense to more of a Destiny/Division approach on consoles. One MMO console players will never experience though, is arguably the best to ever do it, World of Warcraft.
11 Masterpiece Not On PC: Last Of Us
The Last of Us isn't just a fantastic game, it's arguably shaped the way story-driven games present their narratives. Ever since its release we've seen a dynamic shift in the way developers deliver their stories and the industry is a lot better off for it.
Joel and Ellie lead players through a story that is as inspiring as it is heartbreaking.
Naughty Dog is a studio that is owned by PlayStation, and unlike Microsoft, their 1st party exclusives never release on PC. With the sequel right around the corner, PC players wanting to catch up will have to get their hands on either a PS3 or PS4.
10 Missing On Console: Hunt: Showdown
When it was first announced Hunt: Showdown looked like an interesting multiplayer game that introduced a mode that combined both PVP and PVE elements.
It centers around pairs of hunters trying to find clues in order to defeat a monster before other pairs of hunters do.
Though this game is a first-person shooter and those transfer over to consoles pretty seamlessly, the game still hasn't left its beta stage. If Hunt: Showdown does come to consoles some day, don't expect it to be any time in the near future.
9 Masterpiece Not On PC: Shadow Of The Colossus
Shadow of the Colossus is an interesting game. For many, it is considered the pinnacle of what video game artistry can be. Though the game is full of spectacle and wonders the big criticism has to do with its controls. Thankfully with it's shiny new remaster that came out in 2018 it gave players options when it came to controls and brought the beautiful experience of the original release to a modern audience. Shadow of the Colossus may not resonate with everyone, but that doesn't mean it's not a game that shouldn't be experienced at least once.
8 Missing On Console: League Of Legends
League of Legends is one of the largest games on the planet. It's been that way since its release and has had tremendous staying power. Thanks in large part to constant updates, additions, and a massive esports scene the game is thriving as well as it ever has. Players take pride in mastering their roles as well as their champions and unlike Smite you move with mouse clicks as opposed to directional keys. This would make a console port very difficult, and like most MOBAs the gameplay just wouldn't feel right or play well on a controller.
7 Masterpiece Not On PC: Heavy Rain
Are you interesting in very depressing story-driven games about serial attackers? What if I told you that in the game your decisions would have very real consequences? Heavy Rain was a surprise hit on the PlayStation 3.
It didn't sell tremendously well, and its critical reception was positively mixed, but the game was often talked about as a must play on the system.
Though storytelling and decision-based games have vastly improved over the years, no game has since blended an eerie crime drama with consequential based gameplay.
6 Missing On Console: FTL
Now, FTL, otherwise known as Faster Than Light is an interesting case in terms of it not coming to console. The studios follow up game Into the Breach found its way to the Nintendo Switch, less than a year after its successful release on PC. FTL was the game that put Subset Games on the map. It's a top-down real-time strategy roguelike that has players looking over a spaceship. FTL is known for its satisfying difficulty and replayability. With the recent port of Into the Breach fans are still holding out hope that FTL also makes its way onto the Nintendo Switch.
5 Masterpiece Not On PC: Persona 5
The Persona series is often regarded as the modern gold standard for Japanese role-playing games. In terms of defining characteristics Persona 5 is known for a cast of interesting characters, a story that gives you as much as you put in, and arguably the best bang-for-your-buck in video games.
On the shorter end, you're looking to get through the game in around 60 hours.
This is where the line in the sand is drawn for most PlayStation 4 players in terms of whether or not they played it. Steam has a ton of JRPGs, but it can be argued that none of the modern ones stack up to Persona 5.
4 Missing On Console: Stanley Parable
Now, if I'm being honest it's really surprising that Stanley Parable never made its way to consoles. It features very simple controls and the game's main draw is its meta-narrative that questions everything about video games, freedom of choice, and much more. Stanley Parable won countless awards and is one of the funniest and most self-aware games ever developed. If you play games on Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, or PlayStation 4 don't ever expect to play Stanley Parable. The closest you'll get is writing an article about it never coming to console.
3 Masterpiece Not On PC: Gears Of War 2
Gears of War as a franchise is responsible for perfecting cover-based third-person shooters and showcased what a flawless implementation of it could look, feel, and play like. Gears of War 2 is the franchises most refined and polished example of the impact it had on the gaming industry. Though Microsoft recently announced Gears Tactics, a PC real-time strategy game set in the Gears of War universe, don't expect the second mainline installment to make its way over as well. Maybe we'll get a big collection one day that releases on both Xbox and PC, but don't hold your breath.
2 Missing On Console: System Shock 2
System Shock 2 isn't only one of the best PC games ever made, it's the main inspiration for the BioShock franchise. The first-person horror RPG was highly critically acclaimed despite being originally designed as a new IP then quickly turned into a sequel to a game released 5 years prior. This is a weird entry considering Bioshock in a way brought System Shock 2 to consoles, but that doesn't mean it's the same experience. System Shock 3 has been in and out of development, so who knows if the franchise will ever see a console release.
1 Masterpiece Not On PC: Castlevania: Symphony Of The Night
Despite it being considered the best entry in the Castlevania franchise, as well as being ported to the Xbox 360, it doesn't seem like Castlevania: Symphony of the Night will ever see a PC release. Konami has seemed to shift its focus from video games, and Castlevania is a franchise they've often neglected. While you wait for the miracle that is Castlevania: Symphony of the Night coming to PC you can always watch the critically acclaimed animated Netflix anime. It seems to be the only love Castlevania is receiving outside of a PS4 port called Castlevania Requiem.