Skip to main content

The 25 best FPS games you can play right now

Best FPS games
(Image credit: Bungie)

The best FPS games span warzones the world over, and time periods throughout history. They can look gorgeous, especially when running on the PS5 and Xbox Series X, and can impress with cool new spins on the tried and tested shoot 'em up formula. They often pit us against baddies with brains, and those who want to eat them. And they always, always dazzle with their speed and their style.   

On this breakdown of the best FPS games, we're looking at games whose central mechanic is first-person shooting. The game must be available to play right now in 2021. First-person action-RPGs such as Fallout 4, and action-adventure games like Deathloop are out, as are third-person shooters – although you'll find many of those on our ranking of the best shooters – but multiplayer FPS and first-person battle royales are in. Them's the rules. Don't shoot the messenger… just shoot everything else on this list of the best FPS games to play today. 

Best FPS games, ranked

25. Splitgate

Splitgate

(Image credit: 1047 Games)

Developer: 1047 Games
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X

One of the most original FPS games of the current generation is also one of its most fiendishly addictive. A snappy and ultra slick shooter, Splitgate answers the question: “what would happen if Halo and Portal had a baby?” Well, not only would the tyke have a seriously twitchy trigger finger, it would also behave far better than you would ever think. With an impactful arsenal that matches the Master Chief's armory at its best, Splitgate's frenzied free-to-player multiplayer mayhem always feels satisfying. Yet it's the additions of those portals that add a layer of strategy and bristling chaos to what's already becoming an iconic FPS. 

24. Valorant

Valorant

(Image credit: Riot Games)

Developer: Riot Games
Platform(s):
PC

Riot Games' attempt to take CS:GO's competitive FPS crown. It's like a mix of Valve's twitchy shooter and Overwatch's over-the-top heroes: it is, at its heart, still a tactical FPS in which positioning is king and you die in one headshot, but every class has flashy skills and abilities that can turn the course of a round. Some of them let you leap high in the air, others ping enemy positions, while ultimate abilities can damage enemies through walls and clear out entire areas. It's more colorful than CS:GO, but the clean visuals prove that the emphasis is on substance over style.Its short stint in Early Access is a testament to how much polish Riot put into its design, and how balanced its maps and heroes are. Both will only improve over time. 

23. Back 4 Blood

Back 4 Blood

(Image credit: Warner Bros. )

Developer: Turtle Rock Studios
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X

A modern take on Valve's classic Left 4 Dead, Back 4 Blood is one of the biggest third-party boons Xbox Game Pass has received in the last year or so. While solo play only offers bog standard zombie-slaying thrills, the action is oh so elevated by a fantastic co-op mode that delivers equal measures of camaraderie and chaos. The B-Movie charm and smart card system deliver dollops of slapstick and strategy to a game that makes you cherish every last gasp dive to that safe room… whether you make it there with your spleen intact or not. 

22. Battlefield 1

Battlefield 1

(Image credit: EA)

Developer: DICE
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, Xbox One

Battlefield 1 is a WW1 shooter that showcases a terrifying amount of carnage. It's got all the familiar BF modes that we've grown to love, including Conquest, Rush, and Domination, but this game adds the formidable Operations mode that takes the push and pull of war to new heights. This game works so well as a multiplayer shooter because of how finely it's balanced - there's no class, weapon, or tactic that gives an unfair advantage over others. 

By their very nature, WW1 weapons lack true precision and make up for this via brute force and close-quarters effectiveness, so this really levels the playing field online. The maps are brilliant too, and they constantly change as the bombardment of explosives and ruined vehicles scar the landscape. Single-player is pretty enjoyable too, with the emotional war stories giving a sampler of the various fronts WW1 took place on. Overall, it's an immense package.

21. Dusk

Dusk

(Image credit: New Blood Interactive)

Developer: New Blood Interactive
Platform(s):
PC

The best of a crop of unashamedly old-school shooters that have come out in recent years. Plenty of modern games capture the feeling of playing Quake or Doom for the first time, but Dusk is the smoothest, the fastest, the goriest. It's like the best of the 90s, but with a few modern-day twists that make it stand out like detailed reload animations and inventive level design. Maps are varied and keep you guessing: one minute, you're in a spooky old farm, clearing out barns with a shotgun, the next you're in a science lab that twists back on itself, the walls becoming the floor when you turn your head.

Like the best old-school shooters, it's simply bloody good fun. Beefy weapons turn enemies into a fine red mist, and you zoom through levels as if on roller skates, only pausing to line up the perfect shot. It's topped off by a metal soundtrack that refuses to let you quit. 

20. Half-Life 2

Half-Life 2

(Image credit: Valve)

Developer: Valve
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, Xbox One

It may be old enough to drive and gamble a young Gordon's student loan fees under a bus, yet despite its age, Half-Life 2 still has a touch of G.O.A.T. status. This is an all-time shooter masterpiece. Whether you played it on a cutting edge rig on a debuting Steam in 2004, or first sampled its City 17 delights courtesy of Valve's brilliant Orange Box bundle, the core of Half-Life 2's greatness remains unblemished. 

Few other shooters before or since show such a level of masterly pacing. From the extra chilling Cold War opening vibes of that iconic plaza to the zombie-mangling Gravity Gun fun of Ravenholm, Half-Life 2 shuffles between thematic genres with unerring grace. He may never say a word, but Gordon Freeman's actions carry more weight than pretty much every Call of Duty character combined. 

19. Far Cry 6

Far Cry 6

(Image credit: Ubisoft)

Developer: Ubisoft
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X

It may not be the most important game in the series – that nod goes to the iconic third entry – but Far Cry 6 is still a superior shooter. Does it still lean heavily on a lot of well-worn Ubisoft tropes? Obviously. Yet look past the dinky dachshund sidekicks named after a Spanish sausage and the typically assured, if samey stealth, and you'll find an FPS that feels like a much needed turning point for Far Cry.

New additions like the Supremo Backpacks open up creative new avenues for both sneaky and explosive chaos, further enlivening Far Cry's already intoxicating power fantasy. Better yet? With the introduction of freedom fighter Dani – who you can actually see, listen to and emote alongside in third-person cutscenes – Far Cry has finally given us a protagonist who's actually worth rooting for. And all it took was half a dozen entries. When it comes to sandbox shooters, few do madcap spectacle better than Far Cry 6.  

18. Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition 

Best FPS games

(Image credit: Epic Games)

Developer: People Can Fly
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch

Never has a game so intelligent tried so hard to look like an idiot, or been so screamingly funny with it. On Bulletstorm's surface, you'll find a brash, knowing, don't-give-a-fuck attitude, sitting on a layer of the most gloriously creative cursing you've ever heard in a video game. Beneath, you'll find one of the densest, most detailed, widest branching FPS systems ever devised.

The genius of Bulletstorm lies with its Skillshots. Imagine if a new Tony Hawk's game served up tricks but replaced every Ollie and kickflip with increasingly gruesome ways of mangling mutants and you're pretty much there. Boot a dude in the balls then kick his head off. Launch some men into orbit with an alt-fire rocket, then pick them out of the sky like they were clay pigeons. Shunt every second enemy you meet into a cactus, because there's literally always a life-affirmingly sharp cactus lying around. What stings even more than the plant-based murder, though? The sad fact that we'll probably never see such a brash, bright or commendably crude FPS like this again. 

17. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered

Modern Warfare Remastered

(Image credit: Activision)

Developer: Raven Software
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, Xbox One

The best Call of Duty campaign ever made… and it's not close. Dragging the series kicking and screaming from the bloody and muddied trenches of WWII, Modern Warfare re-energized an FPS juggernaut with a breakneck, perfectly paced campaign that's been copied by countless other military shooters since, yet never been remotely matched. 

Kicking down doors with the iconic Captain Price in an electrifying, rain-lashed tanker infiltration. Watching in scarcely believable horror as the character you've played half the game as gets vaporised by a pesky little mushroom cloud. Holding your actual breath as a sniping duo scuttle through the tall, grassy fields and empty, echoing playgrounds of Pripyat in the all-timer of a mission, 'All Ghillied Up'. The original Modern Warfare is so good, you could throw every other COD at it and the remastered 2007 FPS would still boast more memorable moments than the entire series combined. 

16. Borderlands 3

Borderlands 3

(Image credit: Gearbox)

Developer: Gearbox
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X

How to describe Borderlands 3… you could say it's the underlying principles of the first and second Borderlands wrapped up in a more pristine shell. Or you could call it World of Warcraft: The First-Person Shooter. With its heavy emphasis on loot, loot, and more loot, Borderlands 3 drowns players in a sea of guns with varying abilities and stats (including a gun that shoots saw blades, and one you can throw like a boomerang while it carries on firing, wounding anyone nearby), conveniently color-coded by rarity. The colorful cast of characters breaks away from the traditional "fighter, wizard, rogue" archetypes, and each hero is memorable in their own right. 

It doesn't quite have the character of Borderlands 2. We miss Krieg. Oh, Krieg, you crazy barbarian poet. And none of Borderlands 3's villains fill us with anger the way Handsome Jack did. But in terms of shooting and looting, preferably in co-op, it still stands as the zenith of the Borderlands formula.

15. PUBG: Battlegrounds

PUBG: Battlegrounds

(Image credit: PUBG Corp)

Developer: PUBG Corp
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X

PUBG is the game that spawned the battle royale craze. Technically, it wasn't the first battle royale game, but it popularized the staples of the genre we all recognize: randomized gear spread out on a big map; a starting plane from which players parachute; and an ever-shrinking play zone. A lot has changed since it first came out, and now it's more polished, with a variety of maps that cater to all play styles, and it's free-to-play at a baseline. On the biggest maps, you might go long stretches without seeing another player, and it's that pacing, and the lethality of the realistic bullet physics, that set PUBG apart from the crowd. You can play with a squad of friends, but it's always those nail-biting, stealthy solo moments that stick with me.

14. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

(Image credit: Valve)

Developer: Valve
Platform(s):
PC, PS3, Xbox One

The seemingly everlasting king of Steam's most played charts is an FPS every inch as iconic as Half-Life 2. Ever since its debut as an expansive Half-Life mod, the Counter-Strike series has constantly stayed on top of the competitive shooter scene. And though CS:GO is now the de facto way to play this Terrorists vs. Counter-Terrorists FPS on PC, it originally started life as a modernized port for consoles. 

CS:GO is all about tension: there are no respawns during rounds, so once you die, all you can do is watch and anxiously hope that your team detonates/defuses the bomb or rescues/retains hostages successfully. Each map is meticulously crafted to allow for myriad tactics requiring varying degrees of skill, and the lovingly modeled guns in your expansive arsenal all have minutiae in their firing rates and recoil that can only be learned through experience. The staying power of CS:GO is unreal, and screams volumes for its enduring qualities. 

13. Wolfenstein 2: New Colossus

Wolfenstein 2

(Image credit: Bethesda)

Developer: MachineGames
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, Xbox One

This Nazi murder sim is smarter than it sounds. The guns are big, loud, and turn members of the Third Reich into bloody pulps, and the more bullets you pump out, the better. The ability to dual-wield any two weapons also makes New Colossus feel different than other old-school shooters. Most impressive of all is the narrative. You get to know more about the series' broken hero BJ Blazkowicz than ever before through an origin story that's not afraid to get dark, and a talented cast somehow manages to pull off a tale that pirouettes between the serious and the absurd.

12. Overwatch

Overwatch

(Image credit: Blizzard)

Developer: Blizzard
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, Nintendo Switch

Leave it to Blizzard to instantly restore our faith in a genre that we were ready to give up for good. Starting with the fundamentals of a class-based multiplayer shooter, the studio proceeded to sand off every little rough edge leftover from games like Team Fortress 2. It then replaced whatever personality that it lost in the process with an instantly beloved cast of MOBA-inspired heroes. 

Seriously, if you've been on the internet at all since May 2016, you've almost definitely seen at least one piece of Tracer fan art. It's impossible to divorce Overwatch's winsome characters from the game's appeal, but don't let them overshadow the endless smart design choices that Blizzard made for its first foray into action gaming since, er… Blackthorne? Now stop lollygagging and get on the damn point.

11. Metro Exodus

Metro Exodus

(Image credit: 4A Games)

Developer: 4A Games
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X

A shooter that's truly driven by its story. The Metro series is known for blending stealth and shooting in oppressive environments filled with ravenous mutants that want to rip your throat out – Exodus is built from the same DNA, but finds a new level of polish and ambition. Levels are sprawling, and gorgeous, packed with details that encourage you to explore every crumbling building. From Moscow, you take a train through the Russian wilderness, stopping off in desert towns, snowy tundras, and military bases, each filled with secrets to find and enemies to blow to bits.

You conduct missions alone, and venturing from the safety of your party is nerve-wracking. Thankfully, you have an armory of inventive, upgradable weapons to keep you safe, from crossbows to revolvers. Back on the train, you'll get to know your hardy Russian companions, and the endearing cast will make you genuinely care about protagonist Artyom's fate. If you're looking for pure action, Exodus's careful pace might turn you off, but the cross-country travel gives you a constant sense of progress. Once you've set the wheels in motion, you won't want to get off.

10. Superhot

Superhot

(Image credit: SUPERHOT TEAM)

Developer: SUPERHOT Team
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch

Time only moves when you move. That's the elevator pitch for Superhot, a cerebral shooter from a small, independent studio out of Poland, and it's a perfect distillation for what makes Superhot so intoxicating. And all that slow-mo obviously helps, too. Cooler than Keanu in the original Matrix taking the ice bucket challenge, this effortlessly slick FPS is as much a puzzler as it is a shooter. 

While the act of pointing and pulling the trigger is simple enough – it's hard to miss when you're moving slower than a tortoise in treacle – the order you take enemies out in is an entirely trickier issue. Many levels have to be completed with Swiss watch-levels of precision, and killing a dude at the wrong time can send the whole slow motion house of bullet-strewn cards tumbling. That's the central appeal of Superhot: it's an FPS that's as clever as it is cool. 

9. Apex Legends

Apex Legends

(Image credit: EA)

Developer: Respawn Entertainment
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X

The battle royale for those that want to go faster. Your movement is as important as your aim in Apex Legends: you can parkour across roofs, shimmy up ledges, and slide down hills, scrabbling for positional advantage. The character classes and their abilities make Respawn's shooter feel unique in the genre. One hero can see trails of enemy footsteps, another creates portals, and another can clone themselves to bamboozle their opponents. 

In a squad of three, which is the way it was designed to be played, you can combine these abilities in inventive ways to outfox enemy teams. The two maps are bright and varied, with plenty of ways to help you take the high ground, and Respawn is constantly tweaking the formula with new weapons and heroes. If you haven't played it since the early wave of enthusiasm, it's time to return. 

8. Black Mesa

Black Mesa

(Image credit: Crowbar Collective)

Developer: Crowbar Collective
Platform(s):
PC

It's what you get when you take one of the most beloved shooters of all time, Half-Life, revamp the entire disastrous ending and add prettier visuals, more characters, bigger levels, punchier weapons, and proper physics. Black Mesa is fan-made (and Valve-approved), but you wouldn't know it: every room is crafted with the kind of care you don't see from many AAA teams. This is more than just a remake of a classic – it's a complete overhaul that brings one of the greatest shooters ever, and one of the greatest protagonists, the silent scientist Gordon Freeman, into the modern era.

Everything you love about Half-Life remains. You'll shoot headcrab zombies, alien monsters, and human soldiers with an array of weapons, from a beefy shotgun to the prototype energy Gluon Gun, which melts enemies in seconds. But it's the new additions that stand out. In the original Half-Life, the Xen locale, the setting for the final portion of the game, was lifeless. Here, it's bursting with color, and every craggy rock and bizarre clump of plants is rebuilt from scratch. It's far bigger and feels like a completely different game. Half-Life is finally whole.

7. Titanfall 2

Titanfall

(Image credit: Respawn Entertainment)

Developer: Respawn Entertainment
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, Xbox One

Stupidly good, that's what Titanfall 2 is. The weightlessness that comes with perfectly mastered wall-running makes you feel like you're doing some sort of deadly ballet, letting you sail past your foes at impossible speeds, catching them unawares. The unforgettable BT-7274 and unbridled creativity dominate Titanfall 2's campaign, whether it involves you switching between decades in the blink of an eye, walking through a moment frozen in time, or simply ripping other Titans apart when you step into titanic bot boots of BT-7274. 

Rewarding you for using the environment to your advantage, you can feel the moment when you start thinking differently, realising the possibilities a map offers. The physics-twisting Quake-like mechanics of its multiplayer mode strengthen an already sensational shooter package. But it's that remarkable, barely betterered campaign that makes Titanfall 2 such an enduring shooter great. Let's cross BT's colossal droid digits that we eventually see a Titanfall 3. 

6. Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege

best online games – RB6 Siege

(Image credit: Ubisoft)

Developer: Ubisoft
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X

Rainbow Six Siege has quietly become one of the best multiplayer shooters around, combining the intensity and replayability of Counter-Strike with the unique abilities and personality of Overwatch (albeit with a more grounded cast). The real star of Siege is the impressive destructibility of your environment: walls, floors, and ceilings can all be fired through and ultimately destroyed, so you need to smartly choose which flanks to cover and which walls to reinforce, lest someone blast through them with sizzling thermite. 

You and your squadmates choose from a variety of highly skilled Operators, each with their own specialties that can complement each other for a rock-solid team comp, though your propensity for sneaking and aiming a gun are what matter most. Every round becomes a tactical, incredibly tense game of cat-and-mouse, as one team protects an objective while their opponents try to scout out danger and survive a breach.

5. Halo: The Master Chief Collection

Halo: The Master Chief Collection

(Image credit: Microsoft)

Developer: 343 Industries
Platform(s):
PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X

This is the ultimate serialized tale of John 117. Halo: The Master Chief Collection is all but unrecognizable from the Spartan car crash that launched in 2014. After years of server fixes, technical tweaks and graphical upgrades, this is now the definite way to experience golden era Halo. Whether experiencing the best second level in all of shooters in the original Combat Evolved or blasting buddies in PvP on Halo 3's all-time classic Guardian map at a blistering 120 frames per second on an Xbox Series X, Halo has rarely felt more essential. We're tickled (Needler) pink Chief got the redemption act he deserves. 

4. Half-Life: Alyx

Being held at gunpoint by soldiers in Half-Life: Alyx

(Image credit: Valve)

Developer: Valve
Platform(s):
PC

If VR headsets were issued at birth, there's a chance Half-Life: Alyx would be our favorite FPS of all time. Sadly, the barrier for entry to enjoy this virtual reality wonder at its very best is loftier than the off switch on a Strider. Even if you merely 'settle' for experiencing this perfectly paced, incredibly atmospheric shooter on a Meta Quest rather than Valve's painfully expensive Index, you're still looking at dropping a huge chunk of change for a ten hour game. And yet the absolute highest praise we can heap on Alyx? We'd seriously consider paying the price of a PS5 or Xbox Series X just to play this one sensational shooter. 

3. Doom Eternal

Doom Eternal

(Image credit: Bethesda)

Developer: id Software
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X

Though we didn't exactly shower it with praise at the time, in retrospect, Doom Eternal really is at the pinnacle of the FPS genre. This is everything that the genre is about, distilled into one, glorious, searing, defiant roar. It's a force of will. It's also a remarkably elegant experience in motion, especially for a game that makes you garotte a demon every 17 seconds. Like Mario 64 or Mirror's Edge, Eternal feels flawless when you tap into its joyous rhythm. Every gun feels perfectly tuned, each level impeccably paced, while every monster dragged screaming from the depths of Hell has clearly been designed to coax just the right measure of aggression out of the Doom Slayer. 

Amazingly, it's brilliant on pretty much every modern platform, too. Whether you're playing on an OG Xbox One, ripping Cacodemon eyes out at a 120 frames per second on a cutting edge PC, or yanking spines on the impressively assured Switch port, Doom Eternal kicks ass whatever your choice of format. If every PS5 and Xbox Series X game ran as well as id's technically peerless shooter, we'd probably never need another generation of consoles. 

2. Call of Duty: Warzone

A Call of Duty: Warzone player runs from explosions in Season 4

(Image credit: Activision)

Developer: Infinite Ward, Raven Software
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X

Arguably, the best of the best battle royale games. For a year, three games had a stranglehold on the genre: Fortnite, PUBG: Battlegrounds, and Apex Legends. But Call of Duty: Warzone has blown it wide open by twisting every element of battle royale into something that feels fresh, but still familiar – exciting, but accessible. The new stuff: when you die, you get one shot to respawn by taking on another dead foe in a 1v1 fight. You get cash from completing contracts spread across the map, hunting down enemies, searching for chests, or defending an area. You can then spend that cash on loadouts, which you've designed between matches to suit your playstyle.

Then there are the old, comforting bits: the ever-shrinking play zone, a flawless “ping” system to flag items for your teammates, and vehicles to transport you to distant circles. It's like the greatest hits of the genre so far, all backed by Call of Duty's tried and tested low-recoil gunplay, which gives everybody a shot at racking up the kills. You can play it solo, but jumping in with friends in Duos, Trios, or even the chaotic four-soldier squad mode is where the real fun is found.

1. Destiny 2

Destiny 2 Season of the Haunted

(Image credit: Bungie)

Developer: Bungie
Platform(s):
PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X

No one expected Destiny 2 to be as good as it is. And we really, really love Destiny. Instantly making the first game look like a set of prototypes, Destiny 2 improves in every area. Actually, scratch that. It evolves, taking the seed of the first game's MMOFPS idea and building a whole new, entirely richer, deeper, and broader experience around it. Now existing in a fully fleshed world, full of humanity, character, detail, and story, Destiny 2's campaign alone is enough to justify it. Entirely more curated, crafted, and built of great, in-the-moment narrative and set-piece design, it is a hell of a good Halo game. 

But it's only the start. With a simplified, streamlined leveling system running through every one of Destiny 2's vastly expanded activities - from story-driven side-quests to spiraling, multi-part Exotic Questlines, to treasure hunting, to exploration, to in-world lore hunting, to the brilliantly creative new Strikes and puristic, tactically reworked Crucible PvP – every single thing you want to do, however, you want to play, will push you forward. And then there's the far more freeform approach to load-outs, further energized by more creative and expressive weapon design. Even better, with the dawn of Destiny 2 New Light, you can access a lot of the action for free, while regular die-hards can pay for The Witch Queen: the best Destiny expansion ever. 

Paid maker of words, goes by many names: Meiksy… Macklespammer… Big Hungry Joe. Obsessive fan of Metal Gear Solid, Nathan Drake's digital pecks and Dino Crisis 2. Loves Jurassic Park so much, may burst at any moment.
With contributions from