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Gaming PC Under £600 - What Games Can I Play

With GPU prices still incredibly high, budget conscious gamers and parents are feeling it the most. Here are the best games for a budget gaming PC

Horizon 3 Vega Gaming PC screenshot

The benchmark PC we’re going to look at today is the Horizon 3 Vega Gaming PC, which has a fantastic spec for under £550 (when purchased without Windows 10).

Horizon 5 Vega Gaming PC

This budget gaming PC benefits from an AMD Ryzen 5 5600G 3.9GHz processor, with a 7 core APU (Accelerated Processing Unit) to provide the graphics in this system, rather than relying on a dedicated graphics card. Integrated into the CPU itself, AMD Radeon graphics delivers smooth HD gaming, and is also capable of streaming your TV shows in high resolution.

The Ryzen 5 5600G delivers the fastest possible graphics performance available in a desktop processor, offering great performance at 720p as well as 1080p gaming, and an easy route to future upgrades like GPUs when the time is right. Who knows, maybe next year GPU prices will be cheaper than joyriding in orbit with Mr. Bezos?

Can You Play Games Without A GPU?

Spend too much time around the PC Master Race over on Reddit, and you’ll assume the only thing you can play with a low budget PC are old, outdated games that ask very little in terms of specification. This is not the case, and there’s a very good reason why you shouldn’t believe everything you hear about gaming PCs with no dedicated GPU.

Way back in the late nineties and early 2000s, game development was still heavily reliant on developers finding cunning ways to get around the fact that most PC owners didn’t want to spend £3000 on a PC. Textures and maps in games had to be carefully scrutinised to ensure the game would not load up tons of data and ruin the gamer’s experience with stuttering framerates, screen tearing and textures popping in and out of the scene. The developers had very little help from GPU manufacturers in terms of SDKs (Software Development Kits), which manufacturers like Nvidia and AMD now create for developers as a matter of course.

DirectX

The first version of DirectX came out in September 1995 – the “Windows Games SDK” – and would help developers immensely by providing an array of libraries to aid in programming games. Instead of creating everything from scratch, DirectX allowed developers to hand off the rendering of graphics to an API, saving potentially years of development time.

Originally, DirectX was designed to convince game developers to create games for Windows 95 and provided a much easier workflow than manually creating games in MS-DOS. The current version of DirectX – version 12 – is compatible with Microsoft Windows, Dreamcast, Xbox, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Xbox Series X and Series S, and helps developers create games that include modern features such as ray tracing, shading and increasing framerates.

Game Optimisation

Developers are well versed in ensuring their game can be played by as many people as possible, and by optimising the game to be played on low settings, they are covering as many PC specs as they can.

The most important optimisation is actually part of the game engine itself. Having streamlined code in engines like Unreal or Unity means the game does not have to try hard to maintain good performance. Most game engines include extremely good lighting and shading optimisation, which do not involve too much development time to implement, for example.

When a developer decides to use particles in a particular game scene, for instance, there is a lot of optimisation required so this doesn’t cause the graphics card to fall over on a low specification PC. The developer will choose to reduce the number of particles as part of the game settings, so if you have “Low Graphics” enabled, there will be less stress on your GPU/APU.

Simple changes like this make a lot of difference to your experience, without taking anything away in terms of playability. Though you may miss out on high-end reflections, shading or particle effects, you will still be able to enjoy the speed, action and excitement of a game.

What Games Can I Play With A Budget Gaming PC?

The Horizon 5 Vega Gaming PC is capable of playing a myriad of games - from current AAA titles to epic classics. Below is a non-exhaustive list of games you would be able to play comfortably on this budget gaming PC.

Meets Minimum Specifications

  • Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition
  • Arma III
  • Assassin's Creed III
  • Assassin's Creed Rogue
  • Assetto Corsa
  • Batman: Arkham Origins
  • Battlefield 3
  • Battlefield 4
  • Bioshock Infinite
  • Black Desert Online
  • Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel
  • Brawlhalla
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Civilization 6
  • Civilization V
  • Counter-Strike: Source
  • Crysis 3
  • Diablo III
  • Disco Elysium
  • Disco Elysium: The Final Cut
  • DRAGON BALL XENOVERSE
  • Euro Truck Simulator 2
  • EVE Online
  • Fallout 3
  • Far Cry 3
  • FIFA 14
  • For The King
  • Fortnite
  • Fortnite: Battle Royale
  • Garry's Mod
  • Hades
  • Hollow Knight
  • Just Cause
  • Kenshi
  • Killing Floor 2
  • League of Legends
  • Left 4 Dead 2
  • Life is Strange
  • Minecraft
  • Need for Speed: Rivals
  • Outlast
  • Overwatch
  • Paladins
  • PAYDAY 2
  • PAYDAY 2: Black Cat Heist
  • Pro Evolution Soccer 2016
  • Pro Evolution Soccer 2017
  • PUBG Lite
  • Ring of Elysium
  • SteamWorld Dig 2
  • Subnautica
  • Subnautica: Below Zero
  • Team Fortress 2
  • Terraria
  • The Amazing Spider-Man 2
  • The Forest
  • The Long Dark
  • The Sims 4
  • The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings
  • Tomb Raider
  • Total War: ROME II
  • Unturned
  • VALORANT
  • War Thunder
  • Warface
  • WARZONE
  • World of Tanks
  • World of Warships

 

Horizon 5 Vega gaming PC screenshot

 

The Horizon 5 Vega gaming PC is available for less than £600 (when purchased without Windows 10), and comes with a 3 year warranty and the ability to customise & upgrade your build.

Happy gaming!