[Top 15] Best 3rd Person Shooters With Great Gameplay

Best 3rd Person Shooters
Taking aim-assist rather literally.

Someone to look over your shoulder for you.

Do you know why I like third-person shooters? I get to imagine myself as a malevolent demon perched atop my avatar's shoulder, gently whispering naughty deeds into their ear for them to execute. Hey, don't judge me! I like them for other reasons too like the way they allow you to survey your surroundings more effectively and the way they let you really see all the characters in the game as real people. 

Of course, in the case of the third-person shooter, what I really mean is that I get to see everything I want to fill with holes, set on fire, or disintegrate with high-caliber explosives, all from the safety of the cover I've been provided. Here are 15 of the best third-person shooters that allow us to live out these fantasies.

15. PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) (PS4/XBox One/PC/Google Stadia/Android/iOS)

Starting us off is the internet sensation PUBG.

PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) is one of the OG granddaddies of the battle royale genre. PUBG is an online, third-person battle royale shooter (with the option to switch to the first-person mode) that is entirely player versus player (PVP). Players fight to the death, either solo or in teams of between two to four people, to be the last one (or team) standing.

Gameplay begins with you parachuting out of a plane with at least one hundred other players and frantically searching for usable weapons (guns, grenades, etc.), vehicles, and armor. Maps and the plane’s flight path are randomized so that you never know beforehand what zone you’ll be jumping into. Furthermore, the weapons placed in each map are procedurally generated so there’s zero chance of you running to that place where you buried a few grenades and an AK-47. If you do manage to kill an opponent, you can loot their corpse for their dropped weapons, ammo, and armor.

PUBG Gameplay

14. Fortnite (PC/PS5/PS4/XBox One/XBox Series X/S/Nintendo Switch/MacOS/iOS/Android)

It must be déjà vu as we have our second online battle royal entry, Fortnite.

Fortnite is a third-person shooter in the same vein as PUBG with two essential gameplay twists. Fortnite includes the interesting mechanic of "building" which adds a new dimension to combat. Shoot your enemies in the face with guns, but also build elaborate structures to defend yourself or escape from combat.

Another thing that sets Fortnite apart within its genre is its varied game modes and the fact that it has an actual story (-ish?). You can do the traditional battle royale thing and play the aptly named, Fortnite: Battle Royale, against one hundred other players online (jump off a plane, frantically search for items, etc.). Fortnite Creative puts you in a sandbox environment that allows you to spawn enemies, create arenas and do craft the game to your liking. Finally, Fortnite: Save the World allows you to collaborate with other players for a change and complete missions, unlock wacky weapons and engage in a kind of story. 

Fortnite’s Creative and Battle Royale modes are free-to-play, allowing for maximum inclusion for all gamers (especially as it’s available across all platforms) while the Save the World mode is pay-to-play.

Fortnite Gameplay

13. Resident Evil 4 (PS4/XBox One/PC/Nintendo Switch)

Prepare yourself for chills and thrills with lucky number 13, Resident Evil 4.

Resident Evil 4 is a survival horror third-person shooter that pits the wits and skills of protagonist Leon Kennedy against the hordes of zombies sent his way as he tries to rescue the President’s daughter, Ashley, from a deadly virus-infected cult (and her own stupidity - not an easy task). The game is presented via an over-the-shoulder camera and combat involves using weapons such as handguns, shotguns, rifles, and combat knives to battle the infected. These weapons can either be discovered as you explore the cultists’ village or can be bought and upgraded via a merchant who appears in various locations as you progress through the game.

Resident Evil 4’s gameplay also includes some quick time elements that test your reflexes and attentiveness. Failure at these events often leads to your in-game death and they can pop up anywhere from regular scenarios to boss battles. Finally, the regular mob enemies are capable of using melee weapons and projectile weapons against Leon and Ashley and often require some degree of strategy to combat. The AI in Resident Evil 4 has been well programmed to create situations where you have to respond creatively to avoid being overwhelmed by zombies whose main goal seems to be to box you in and give you the toothiest of hugs.

Resident Evil 4 Gameplay

12. Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands (PS4/XBox One/PC/Google Stadia)

Bust out the mosquito netting as you infiltrate lush South American jungles in Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Wildlands.

Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands continues the age-old tradition of Tom Clancy Ghost Recon games by being a tactical shooter that has you play as a member of the Special Forces Groups known as Ghosts. You play as all members of the Ghost unit at various points in the game, each of whom performs unique roles in the team (hacker/engineer, sniper, etc.) The game features a third-person mode view and military-grade weaponry and takes place in the modern era. Another important aspect of Wildland’s settings is its departure from previous Ghost Recon titles by adopting an open-world style that encourages exploration and several different environments for you to experience (forested, mountainous, and desert areas).

Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands incorporates elements of stealth into its gameplay by allowing for concealment and the quick assassination of enemies. Melee combat is also possible and includes a mechanic that allows you to use an enemy as a human shield (finally!) while in combat. Several weapons are available to players as well such as handguns, assault rifles, shotguns, and uniquely, crossbows (for the traditionalists among us). Traversal is done either on foot, using various vehicles, and even by parachute after leaping out of a helicopter. Lastly, the game is divided into story missions and side missions and also includes a co-op multiplayer mode and a competitive multiplayer mode which has you compete against other players in four-person teams.

Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Wildlands Gameplay

11. Shadow of the Tomb Raider (PS5/PS4/XBox Series X/S/XBox One/Google Stadia/PC/Mac OS/Linux)

Lara Croft is at her finest and most brutal in Shadow of the Tomb Raider, our 11th entry on this list.

Lara Croft returns in this latest installation of the Tomb Raider franchise. In Shadow of the Tomb Raider, Lara battles a private militia in a South American jungle while in search of the legendary city of Paititi. The gameplay is similar to its predecessor, Rise of the Tomb Raider, in that you can use various weapons, both projectile, and melee, to combat enemies in an unforgiving environment. Access your arsenal of handguns, shotguns, assault rifles, and bows to take down foes using a combination of open combat and stealth. Melee combat is also an option as you can use combat knives and axes to get up close and personal with your enemies (how romantic!).

You can get around the lush sub-tropical environment by walking, sprinting, climbing, and swimming through various areas. In addition, crafting and hunting form important elements of the game as they enable you to upgrade Lara’s weapons and repair her outfits. This is done in the hub area of Paititi where you can also trade with merchants for an array of items. Lastly, the game features optional tombs (you know…to raid) and puzzle-solving elements that test your intelligence and patience.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider Gameplay

10. Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain (PS4/XBox One/PC)

Giant robots, awesome stealth, and government conspiracies are all alive and well in Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain.

In Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain, you control Snake (well one of the Snakes at least - what a convoluted plot!) from a third-person perspective as you primarily use stealth to either assassinate or incapacitate enemies in Afghanistan as part of a revenge campaign on the group who tried to have you killed. Weaponry features heavily in MGS5: The Phantom Pain with Snake having multiple ways with which to engage in combat: use handguns, sniper rifles, tranquilizer darts, explosives, heavy artillery, and machinery, airstrikes, and even a wolf to take out single enemies or large target areas.

Getting around in Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain is as varied as its weaponry giving you a range of transport options such as jeeps, tanks, horses, armored vehicles, and trucks. In addition, you can just foot it or rock climb to access mountainous areas that your vehicles can’t reach. Snake is also able to call on AI companions to help him complete certain tasks including sniping, concealment, and up-close assassination. After a nice day out taking in the sights (and snapping necks), you can return to your self-made home base. These bases are customizable and allow you to recruit enemy soldiers and airlift items to populate them.

Multiplayer modes include Metal Gear Online which features PVP-focused combat where you form teams of up to eight players to engage in open combat and another mode that focuses on upgrading and protecting your bases from raids launched by other players.

Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain Gameplay

9. Control (PS5/PS4/XBox X/S/Xbox One/PC/Nintendo Switch/Amazon Luna/Stadia)

Prepare to have your mind blown with entry number 9, Control.

Welcome to the Oldest House and the best job you’ve ever had! In Control, you play Jesse Faden as she is unwittingly recruited to become the Director of the Oldest House, a secret government agency tasked with researching and combatting the paranormal. As Faden, you’ll use an array of powerful psionic abilities like telekinesis, telepathy, and flight to battle the game’s primary antagonist, the Hiss. The game is played from a third-person perspective and arms you with a gun that can take multiple forms (sniper, handgun, shotgun, etc.) which can be used to take on the human enemies controlled by the Hiss.

Control features a non-linear progression style that gives you the freedom to freely explore the Oldest House (provided you’ve unlocked some key ability). As you progress, you unlock various save stations known as Control Points which allow you to upgrade your gun, assign skill points to improve your psionic abilities and equip perks that boost certain gameplay attributes. Missions include story missions that further the plot, side missions that reward you with bonus perks, and time-restricted missions that require you to complete some objective in an area of the Oldest House.

Control Gameplay

8. Remnant: From The Ashes (PS5/PS4/XBox One/XBox Series X/S/PC)

Hone your skills and massage that trigger finger in Remnant: From The Ashes.

What happens when you mix Dark Souls with a third-person shooter this time? You get Remnant: From The Ashes, a romp through a post-apocalyptic world where the remnants of humanity fight back against an interdimensional race of beings called the Root, who’ve overrun Earth in their quest for realms to dominate. You control a personalized protagonist who is sent on a mission to the heart of the Root invasion to find a way to decisively end the threat. To this end, you’ll use the many weapons at your disposal to weed out (*giggle*) the enemy in droves such as assault rifles, sniper rifles, shotguns, and melee weapons. These weapons as well as the armor available to you throughout the game are all upgradable using the materials found during your journey. You can also upgrade the stats of your player character by unlocking trait points as you defeat enemies and bosses.

Remnant: From The Ashes has a traditional single-player mode as well as a multiplayer mode that allows you to form a team of three persons with which you can progress through the story. This multiplayer mode is solely cooperative allowing for players to band together to defeat the overwhelming Root threat without having to worry about other players killing you.

Remnant: From The Ashes Gameplay

7. The Division 2 (PS4/XBox One/PC/Google Stadia)

Shine the light of order and justice into those Dark Zones in The Division 2, here at number 7.

The Division 2 is a faithful sequel to its predecessor, The Division, in that it furthers the plot and builds upon the existing world by adding new characters and a new area to explore. This time, you find yourself and your player character in Washington DC instead of New York, where you battle against rival gangs and government agencies to rebuild the city in the wake of the series’ ongoing pandemic, the Green Poison. As a member of the Division, you and your team are a last line of defense in the US when things go south and are granted access to advanced weaponry with which you discharge your duties.

The Division 2 follows retains the third-person perspective of the previous entry and gives players access to various firearms and grenades. Furthermore, as you proceed through the game you gain access to skills that augment your capabilities in battle. These skills include the ability to deploy gun turrets, shields, mines, and other artillery. The world of The Division 2 is expansive and open and allows you to explore at your leisure. There are side missions that give you access to extra loot in the form of new weapons and tactical gear and also recruitment missions that give you the chance to enlist NPCs to your base. As combat takes the form of a cover-based shooter, transport is largely done on foot or via fast travel points that become active upon discovery.

Finally, the Dark Zone makes a comeback from the original game and facilitates PVP combat in the same way as The Division. You and eleven other players compete for rare, high-quality loot and must have said loot airlifted out of the Dark Zone to claim it. The other players can still hijack your loot and kill you if it is not airlifted in time.

The Division 2 Gameplay Walkthrough

6. Risk of Rain 2 (PS4/XBox One/Nintendo Switch/PC/Google Stadia)

Shooting aliens, getting stronger, running like hell. What more do you want? Here's Risk of Rain 2 giving you the answer to all those desires.

Risk of Rain 2 is a roguelike third-person shooter that has you stranded on an alien planet and tasked with surviving wave after wave of deadly alien creatures. Gameplay has you progress through various levels collecting power-ups from chests that you find along the way. These chests require in-game currency to open, which can be farmed from killing the various aliens you encounter. To progress to another level, you have to battle your way to a teleporter that is randomly located on each level, making each level a test of skill and endurance. However, it isn’t wise to stop and smell the roses for too long as the longer you stay on any given level, the harder the enemies become.

Risk of Rain 2 also features bosses on each level as simply reaching the teleporter is not enough. You have to wait for the teleporter to fully activate, which provides ample opportunity for new waves of enemies, including the aforementioned bosses, to spawn and ruin your day. One good thing about Risk of Rain 2 is that at least you don’t have to be alone. The game features a cooperative online multiplayer mode that allows you to band together with some friends and shoot ugly alien faces! Teamwork makes the dream work!

Risk of Rain 2 Gameplay

5. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End (PS4/PC)

Here's to a brilliant last hurrah! Here's to number 5, Uncharted 4: A Thief's End!

Uncharted 4 is a third-person action-adventure that immerses you in a world of gun-slinging and exploration. You play as Nathan Drake, explorer extraordinaire as he fights off waves of baddies with guns in search of famous pirate Henry Avery’s treasure.

Drake uses various firearms (shotguns, rifles, handguns, etc.), melee weapons, explosives, and stealth to kill enemies and also has access to a grappling hook that allows him to reposition himself for a tactical advantage. Your grappling hook is also used for world traversal and allows you to get across perilous chasms. That being said, you get around the world (literally) of Uncharted on foot, by climbing, swimming, and in some cases by driving vehicles.

Uncharted 4 has a single-player campaign and a multiplayer mode with different game types that impose varying victory conditions on players. You and up to nine players can compete in these modes using a variety of skills, weapons, and power-ups.

Uncharted 4 Gameplay

4. Gears 5 (XBox One/XBox Series X/S/PC)

Not the plague of Locusts we're used to hearing about but far more entertaining, here's Gears 5 at number 4.


Gears 5 is the latest installment to the Gear of War franchise created by XBox Game studios. In Gears 5, the ongoing story of mankind’s struggle to combat the Locust Horde, a race of alien creatures who appear from the depths of the Earth-like planet Sera, continues from the perspective of protagonist Kait Diaz. In this third-person cover-based shooter, you use unique futuristic firearms to carve a path through your alien enemies.

Gears 5’s weaponry is unique and may sometimes even be silly. Take, for example, the Buzzkill which fires buzzsaws (hilarious, truly) that ricochet off walls and dismembers enemies. The game also features bows, rocket launchers, and even a railgun that fires lasers. Gameplay for Gears 5 has two game modes: one single-player campaign and one cooperative multiplayer campaign that enables both three-person, split-screen couch co-op and online co-op.

Gears 5 Gameplay

3. The Last of Us Part 2

Ellie is back and better than ever in The Last of Us Part 2.

The Last of Us Part 2 is a sequel to the universally acclaimed game by Naughty Dog that has you trying to survive in a post-apocalyptic world that has been overrun by zombies infected by a mutated strain of the Cordyceps fungus. You play as Ellie from The Last of Us and her partner Abby, a former soldier. The game functions as part of the third-person survival horror genre and features the use of firearms, melee combat, and stealth against both human and fungus-mutated enemies.

The environment often varies from forested areas to cities and suburbs that have been reclaimed by nature. Scavenging is once again the primary way of gathering materials and crafting weapons. Ellie and Abby have access to rifles, bows, pistols, and grenades as they move through the world and cooperate. There is also an element of cover-based shooting involved especially when going up against human enemies who, surprise surprise, also have guns! Guns: truly fun for the whole family!

The Last of Us Part 2 Gameplay

2. Hitman 3 (PS5/PS4/XBox Series X/S/XBox One/Google Stadia/Nintendo Switch/PC)

Make your enemies' deaths look like unfortunate accidents in Hitman 3, our penultimate entry.

The return of Agent 47 was quite a welcome sight for fans of the third-person stealth shooter genre. In Hitman 3, our beloved bald assassin performs contracts in locations throughout the world (Dubai, Berlin, and Chongqing, for example) using pistols, sniper rifles, combat knives, and garrotes. You can also engage in hand-to-hand combat and stealthily incapacitate unsuspecting foo- I mean, victims.

Hitman 3 focuses on close-quarters stealth and as such, traversal does not involve any movement beyond walking. The environment usually consists of buildings, estates, and nearby streets and alleyways near Agent 47’s targets. A feature that has been added to the game was the inclusion of persistent shortcuts. You can unlock these shortcuts in all locations you enter and they remain open long after Agent 47 has left the area, chaos in his wake. This adds an element of replayability to Hitman 3 that previous installations have lacked.

Hitman 3 Gameplay

1. Red Dead Redemption 2 (PS4/XBox One/PC/Google Stadia)

Quick on the draw and packed with depth, entry number 1 is Red Dead Redemption 2.

Red Dead Redemption 2 brings us back to the American Wild West with the protagonist Arthur Morgan, an outlaw who operates as part of the Van der Linde gang. The game is played from either a first-person or third-person perspective and lets you loose into an open-world environment where you use firearms, explosives, a bow and arrow, and other throwable items. In addition, combat includes the ability to dual-wield weapons, which was not present in the last game.

When you do finally get around to doing missions after having your fill of the open air, there are both story missions and side missions to choose from which you can get to by either walking or on horseback. Various criminal activities are also possible such as stagecoach robbery, horse theft, and just general banditry (I mean, you are part of a gang right?). The interesting thing about life is that often it goes both ways. While you can rob, raid and scam, it can also be done to you. While exploring the open world, you can fall victim to random events such as ambushes, animal attacks, and even ride-by shootings.

There is truly much to do in Red Dead Redemption 2, such that it’s almost impossible to list all of the various events, pastimes, and activities you can get into (honorable mentions go out to gambling and Five Finger Filet). Apart from the single-player campaign, you can also play a multiplayer mode called Red Dead Online which was also released as a standalone game for those who just want that multiplayer experience.

Red Dead Redemption 2 Gameplay

Just a friendly islander NPC who plays video games and lays around at the beach. Selling coconut flavored side-quests at discount prices.
Gamer Since: 2000
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
Top 3 Favorite Games:Dark Souls 3 , The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - Dragonborn, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

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