The Best PC Games To Play With Just The Keyboard

While there are plenty of games to choose from on the PC, sometimes you don’t want to go through the hassle of dual-wielding your mouse and trying to learn the controls of a new game on your keyboard too.

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For those moments, it’s best to find a game that you can play with just your keyboard. Thankfully, with the wide plethora of games available on the PC, it isn’t too hard to find keyboard-only games to play. Here are some of the best games out there for the PC that you don’t have to toil with a mouse and keyboard to play.

10 Limbo

A shadowy image of the silhouette of a boy surrounded by multiple lit candles.

Limbo

Released
July 21, 2010

Developer(s)
Playdead

Genre(s)
Platformer

A sidescroller with a dark side. Limbo follows a young boy as he struggles through a dark forest in search of his sister. There are plenty of creatures you must best along the way with puzzles and proper platforming.

It’s a game that’s simple but deceptively creepy with its use of light and darkness. When people talk about side-scrolling games, Limbo is sure to come up, and once you start playing it, it’s not hard to see why.

9 Shovel Knight

Shovel Knight fighting a giant knight in an underground cavern

Shovel Knight

Released
June 26, 2014

Developer(s)
Yacht Club Games

Genre(s)
Platformer

A fun mix of 8-bit art style, fantasy elements, and humor; Shovel Knight is a simple game to get accustomed to thanks to the fact that it is only keyboard-controlled. The art, the music, and the story all combine into a game that you can easily lose track of time with.

You wouldn’t think a knight’s main weapon would be a shovel, but you’ll realize how wrong you are once you see how fun this game is. Plus, it’s even more fun with up to three of your friends as they play knights to help you on your quest.

8 Risk Of Rain

risk of rain boss fight at night

A platformer with a combat-heavy focus, Risk of Rain lands you on the surface of a planet that doesn’t want you to be there at all. The game is as punishing as it is fun thanks to a permadeath feature.

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This means playthroughs are short and often brutal, but just as rewarding as you unlock new things and learn more about the various enemies you must fight off. The only thing that makes it more fun is when up to three of your friends join you in this survival adventure propelling you to new heights and new lows.

7 The Typing Of The Dead: Overkill

Varla shoots a zombie with the phrase,

Zombie games are a commonly seen genre, but none do what they do with the concept quite like The Typing of the Dead series does. It was a normal day in the American South, until all the undead mutants showed up.

Now tasked with survival, four different characters must shoot their way to safety. The only way to help them is to type the words on your screen as quickly and as accurately as you can. It’s a fun take on a classic genre that doesn’t take itself seriously, and one that has a bit of an educational aspect to it. If you like that kind of thing.

6 Burnout Paradise Remastered

A takedown in Burnout Paradise Remastered

A classic in the racing genre, the Burnout series has been a staple for some time. Now remastered with sharper 4K graphics and more cars, Burnout Paradise is one of the big names in the series.

Perhaps more important than the racing in this game is the crashes, Burnout has always been groundbreaking in its car physics, especially when those cars meet one another. It’s a dramatic and action-packed game that you don’t even need a mouse to play, which makes it that much better.

5 The Binding Of Isaac

The Binding of Isaac Title Art

The Binding of Isaac

Released
September 28, 2011

Developer(s)
Edmund McMillen, Florian Himsl

Genre(s)
Roguelike

An odd and grim game, but one that is quite interesting to experience. The Binding of Isaac is a game that is easy to approach but hard to master. Roughly based on the story of Isaac in the bible, it takes the form of a roguelike shoot-em-up game where you must enter arenas with random enemies.

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Many of these deadly bosses represent part of Isaac’s struggle as he edges closer to death. It gets more and more sad as you look deeper into the meanings of everything around you, which makes for quite an interesting experience.

4 Tetris

Tetris but the upcoming pieces are cut to be flat

Tetris

Released
June 6, 1984

Developer(s)
Sega

Genre(s)
Puzzle

Everyone has heard of Tetris by now. The brightly colored puzzle game has captivated audiences ever since its early days as an arcade cabinet. While new levels have been added, and some sharper graphics here and there, it’s still the classic game that earlier generations fell in love with.

Whether you need to kill some time, or you want to chase a high score, there’s plenty of randomization and a little bit of stress to keep you coming back to Tetris for some time. There’s a reason this game has never been stripped of its classic status.

3 Cuphead

Cuphead The Hero Battles King Dice

Cuphead

Released
September 29, 2017

Developer(s)
Studio MDHR Entertainment Inc.

Genre(s)
Platformer

Few sidescrollers are as ruthless as Cuphead is. The difficulty of a Soulsborne game has been imbued to a simple game in the design style of an early cartoon. Platform from stage to stage to defeat bosses, each with their own powers. It’s a fun experience with a pretty solid story behind it.

You can play it alone or with a friend who takes the role of Mugman, Cuphead’s trusty twin brother. It can get frustrating how bright and shiny the game is in comparison to the dread you feel after seeing the game over screen over and over again. If you want a bit of a challenge with your keyboard, then this is the one for you.

2 Mortal Kombat 11

Mortal Kombat 11: Shang Tsung Ruling The Universe In His Ending

Mortal Kombat 11

Released
April 23, 2019

Developer(s)
NetherRealm Studios

Genre(s)
Fighting

There’s something quite fun about finishing someone off with a brutality with just your keyboard. Mortal Kombat 11 is available on PC and you don’t even need your mouse to complete it. Your favorite Mortal Kombat characters are all there for you, but reimagined in this new universe.

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Earthrealm is once again in trouble, but at least there’s plenty of powerful people willing to stop dark powers from destroying the world. If you want a gore-soaked fighting with the ability to play against either bots or enemy players from around the world, then there is no better option available to you than Mortal Kombat.

1 Dead Cells

Dead Cells: The Warrior Fighting A Boss

Dead Cells

Released
May 17, 2017

Developer(s)
Motion Twin

Genre(s)
Roguelike

You’d think the life of a creature known as The Prisoner would be a tough one, and you would be right. A mix of both metroidvania and roguelike genres, it’s a unique experience to be revived time and again to fight the various creatures that live inside the island you’re trapped in.

Dead Cells has done well enough in its genre to make a name for itself, to the point of even joining teams with Castlevania for a special DLC. You know it’s a good game when one of the defining games of its genre wants to make a game together.

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