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Best PC Game

Fortunately for PC game fans around the world, 2005 had a strong lineup of games to offer, including sequels to well-loved series and all-new original games. The PC as a platform is known for many strengths--such as its ability to support powerful, scalable graphics and its larger base of online customers--and there were several excellent games that played to these strengths this year. It seemed like it would be tough to decide a clear-cut winner, but by the end of our deliberations, one finalist stood head and shoulders above the rest.

Battlefield 2

Developer: Digital Illusions
Platform: PC
ESRB: Teen
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Despite the fact that it's a sequel, Battlefield 2 is a thrilling action game that immerses you in the chaos of combat like never before.

Call of Duty 2

Developer: Infinity Ward
Platform: PC
ESRB: Teen
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If you liked the original Call of Duty, then you're sure to enjoy the sequel, which stays true to the strengths of its predecessor.

F.E.A.R.

Developer: Monolith Productions
Platform: PC
ESRB: Mature
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This outstanding shooter combines creepy horror with kinetic and visceral action, and it elevates the genre to a whole new level of intensity.

Guild Wars

Developer: ArenaNet
Platform: PC
ESRB: Teen
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It's a very impressive game that's rewarding on many different levels and can be tremendously appealing for any number of reasons.

Sid Meier's Civilization IV

Developer: Firaxis Games
Platform: PC
ESRB: Everyone 10+
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If you have even a passing interest in strategy games, world history, or getting less sleep at night, you owe it to yourself to give Civilization IV a try.

And the winner is... Sid Meier's Civilization IV
Platform: PC
ESRB: Everyone 10+

There are many reasons that Civilization IV is a fantastic game and just as many reasons that GameSpot selected it as its PC game of the year. Civilization IV presents a more-streamlined version of the classic strategy formula that designer Sid Meier helped create at MicroProse so many years ago. However, the new game includes a powerful 3D engine, as well as a new design focused on multiplayer play. Previously, finishing just one multiplayer session in a game as epic as Civilization was only for the most devoted players with hours to kill--Civ IV instead lets players cut through a multiplayer session in less than an hour. The same goes for the single-player game, which is even more flexible and fast-paced than ever yet features a more-balanced presentation of the game's considerable depth. Civ IV's fast-paced, compelling, and varied strategy puts it at the top of the heap of this year's PC games.