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Steam Summer Sale 2021: the best deals and PC games on Steam

Steam Summer Sale 2021
(Image credit: Steam)

The Steam Summer Sale 2021 is upon us, and is providing PC gamers with a whole host of tempting deals on some of the best PC games on the market. We're seeing tons of games go on sale from triple-A blockbusters to smaller scale indie titles, many of which will surely have steep discounts.

If you've been waiting to pull the trigger on a great deal for the next big addition to your Steam library, then you're in luck. The Steam Summer Sale 2021 began on June 24, 2021 at 10am PST / 1pm EST / 6pm BST / 7pm CEST. It ends on July 8 at 10am PST / 1pm EST / 6pm BST / 7pm CEST, so there's plenty of time to make some big additions to your Steam library.

During the 2020 Steam Summer Sale, there were some games that offered up to 10-30% discounts, but what we were interested in was the really juicy discounts on some of our favorite PC games. Steam always manages to have some really deep discounts on some fairly big-name games, and we're also seeing that with the Steam Summer Sale 2021.

To help you separate the best deals from the stinkers, we've compiled a list of the very best discounts featured during the 2021 Steam Summer Sale. Browse below to find a game to suit you, ranging from triple-A smash hits to beloved indies and everything in between.

Steam Summer Sale 2020

Image credit: Valve (Image credit: Valve)

The best Steam Summer Sale 2021 deals

Mass Effect Legendary Edition: $59.99

Mass Effect Legendary Edition: $59.99 $49.79 on Steam
There's never been a better time to get stuck into Bioware's epic space opera trilogy. You're getting three incredible, story rich games packed with almost all DLC and some lovely visuals upgrades.

Borderlands 3: $49.99

Borderlands 3: $49.99 $19.79 on Steam
Hop into the chaotic gun-fest that is the Borderlands world with the latest game in the series. You can enjoy the campaign alone, or team up with friends onlien for the co-op experience. 

Cities: Skylines: $29.99

Cities: Skylines: $29.99 $7.49 on Steam
Tired of the traffic on your commute to work or the look of your home town? Try building something better in Cities: Skylines. Construct a hyper-efficient city, or build a sprawling metropolis.

Tabletop Simulator: $19.99

Tabletop Simulator: $19.99 $9.99 on Steam
If you love board games but can't always get together with friends to play them Tabletop Simulator offers a platforms to play a huge variety of board games with your friends in a digital environment.

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain: $19.99

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain: $19.99 $4.99 on Steam
If you haven't played Metal Gear Solid V yet, now's your chance to snag it for next to nothing. The game is a cinematic masterpiece and a must-play for lovers of stealth games.

Planet Coaster: $44.99

Planet Coaster: $44.99 $11.24 on Steam
You've been to theme parks, and you've ridden roller coasters. But, maybe you can do better. Try your hand at building a theme park and designing the fastest, twistiest roller coasters in Planet Coaster.

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition: $39.99

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition: $39.99 $15.99 on Steam
Maybe you played Skyrim when it first came out, or maybe you never got around to it. But, this deal on the Special Edition makes for a great opportunity to experience the game with graphics that enhance those of the original release.

Titanfall 2: $29.99

Titanfall 2: $29.99 $5.99 on Steam
Experience one of the best campaigns in any FPS game with Titanfall 2. From powerful combat on foot and in Titans to the incredible maneuvers of a pilot, this is a game that never lets up.

Dark Souls III: $59.99

Dark Souls III: $59.99 $14.99 on Steam
Are you a glutton for punishment? Do you love the struggle of a vicious video game boss? Dark Souls III should be right up your alley with basic enemies that can pose a real threat and bosses that will make you earn your victory.

$59.99

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice: $59.99 $29.99 on Steam
This game of the year winner might just be FromSoftware's hardest game to date, but if you're up to the challenge, you'll find a brutally satisfying action game that mixes fast-paced stealth with reflex-based melee combat.

Grand Theft Auto V: $29.99

Grand Theft Auto V: $29.99 $14.79 on Steam
The staying power for Grand Theft Auto V has been astounding, as has the staying power of its price tag. But, this is one of the few times a year you can snag it at a discount.

A Way Out: $29.99

A Way Out: $29.99 $7.49 on Steam
Arguably one of the best co-op games ever made, you and a friend are tasked with breaking out of prison, learning about each others' characters and making crucial decisions along the way.

The Sims 4: $39.99

The Sims 4: $39.99 $4.79 on Steam
You can get in on the classic life-building simulation game with a huge 88% discount right now. Expansion for the Sims 4 are also on sale with some pretty steep discounts, too.

Tekken 7: $39.99

Tekken 7: $39.99 $5.99 on Steam
Continue the saga of the Tekken franchise with epic combat, compelling graphics, and a massive 85% discount. Some DLC for the game has also been discounted if you want to load up on extra characters and stages.

Ni no Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom: $59.99

Ni no Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom: $59.99 $29.99 on Steam
Head back into the delightful anime-styled world of Ni no Kuni in this sequel. You can explore the wide world, meet fun characters, and you can save a huge 50% on the price.

Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown: $59.99

Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown: $59.99 $14.99 on Steam
Take to the skies in Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown. You'll get to feel like an ace pilot as you weave through the sky and engage in tense dogfights 

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt: $49.99

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt: $49.99 $7.99 on Steam
If you still haven't played The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, nows the time. This deal will not only land you the epic main game, but also the two expansions that deliver many hours more on top of the already massive game.

Portal 2: $9.99

Portal 2: $9.99 $1.99 on Steam
A first-person puzzle game that's won more than 70 industry accolades, this classic game from Valve hasn't aged a day. Use physics and your noggin to escape the occasionally murderous computer companion GLaDOS, and enjoy two-player co-op.

Resident Evil 2: $39.99

Resident Evil 2: $39.99 $15.99 on Steam
Arguably one of the finest remakes of this generation, Resident Evil 2 lets players rediscover the horrors of Raccoon City. Filled with more life-like shuffling zombies than ever, this is a true classic reborn. 

Resident Evil 7 Biohazard: $29.99

Resident Evil 7 Biohazard: $29.99 $9.89 on Steam
RE7 marked a terrifying return to form for the series, featuring a claustrophobic first-person perspective, horrifying environments and the now iconic Baker family pursuing you throughout the game.

Celeste: $19.99

Celeste: $19.99 $4.99 on Steam
Journey to the top of Celeste mountain as Madeline in this gorgeous and super-tight, narrative-driven platformer. With 700+ screens of platforming challenges, this will test your thumbs and patience in equal measure. 

Two Point Hospital: $34.99

Two Point Hospital: $34.99 $8.74 on Steam
Cure patients with all sorts of crazy and peculiar illnesses in Two Point Hospital, the spiritual successor to 1997's Theme Hospital. Build up your reputation, manage your staff and win as many healthcare awards as you can. The doctor will see you now. 

Dead by Daylight: $19.99

Dead by Daylight: $19.99 $11.99 on Steam
In this 4 versus 1 multiplayer horror game, one player takes the role of a killer, while the other four players try to escape being caught and... well, you can guess the rest. 

$59.99

Total War: Warhammer 2: $59.99 $20.39 on Steam
A must for strategy fans, Total War: Warhammer 2 lets you command an army of fantastical warriors and factions. Wage war in a vivid fantasy world and enjoy an engrossing campaign along with online multiplayer.

Fallout 4: $29.99

Fallout 4: $29.99 $11.99 on Steam
Explore a hostile post-apocalyptic open-world as the sole survivor of Vault 111. Your choices have consequences, and only you can rebuild and determine the fate of the wasteland. Welcome to Fallout 4. 

Sid Meier's Civilization 6: $59.99

Sid Meier's Civilization 6: $59.99 $14.99 on Steam
Expand your empire and compete against history's greatest leaders to build a civilization that will stand the test of time in this turn-based strategy game. Will you rely on diplomacy or brute force to conquer your objectives?

XCOM 2: $59.99

XCOM 2: $59.99 $14.99 on Steam
Reclaim a world ruled by aliens in this acclaimed strategy game, which is currently 75% off. Recruit resistance fighters and take on a new breed of enemy using tactical guerrilla combat. 

Mortal Kombat 11: $49.99

Mortal Kombat 11: $49.99 $14.99 on Steam
The classic fighting franchise is back, and it's bloodier than ever. Break bones, pull off gruesome fatalities and discover a cinematic story in this top-tier entry in the Mortal Kombat series. 

A Plague Tale: Innocence: $44.99

A Plague Tale: Innocence: $44.99 $11.24 on Steam
Take control of Amicia, a young girl who must protect her little brother Hugo from the Inquisition soldiers. Evade swarms of rats using fire and light, and embark on a emotional journey through the darkest hours of history. 

Halo: The Master Chief Collection: $39.99

Halo: The Master Chief Collection: $39.99 $19.99 on Steam
Six incredible Halo titles, including the main series, Halo 3 ODST and Halo Reach are all half off in this epic collection. If you're looking to bolster your first-person shooter collection on Steam, this would be the way to do it.

Persona 5 Strikers: $59.99

Persona 5 Strikers: $59.99 $40.19 on Steam
This fantastic hack-'n-slash from the Dynasty Warriors team expands the universe of Persona 5, making it a perfect addition to your Steam library if you loved the original PS4 JRPG.

Danganronpa 1/2/V3: $79.97

Danganronpa 1/2/V3: $79.97 $23.97 on Steam
Packing fantastic stories with an incredibly cool aesthetic, the Danganronpa series should not be missed, especially the first two games that really helped to break the visual novel mold.

Yakuza: Like a Dragon: $59.99

Yakuza: Like a Dragon: $59.99 $38.99 on Steam
The latest game in the Yakuza series divorced the previous games' real-time combat for a turn-based system, and the results are superb. This massive RPG features incredible characters and writing and is well worth your time.

Warhammer: Vermintide 2: $29.99

Warhammer: Vermintide 2: $29.99 $7.49 on Steam
Looking for a little Left 4 Dead influence in your Warhammer games? Vermintide 2 fuses visceral melee combat with a co-operative first-person experience like no other.

Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy: $39.99

Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy: $39.99 $19.99 on Steam
Three visually stunning and endlessly fun platforming remakes are yours at a fraction of the original price. There's bags of content in this collection for diehard platforming fans.

How to get the best deals in the Steam Sales

Whichever way you approach a particular Steam Sale, you're guaranteed to have the chance to pick up some top gaming titles at great prices. 

Finding bargains isn't too difficult, but there are a few techniques and tricks that are worth using if you want to get the most out of the sales.

  • Use your Steam Wishlist: Fill it up with all the games you're interested in picking up, and you'll be alerted the moment they go on sale, and how much they've been discounted by.
  • Bundles are great: Publishers often pull their titles together in sale mega-packs, ramping up the savings to even greater heights. If there's a suite of titles from a publisher like Square Enix or Activision that you've never played before, this is the best – and cheapest – way to bag them all at once. As you'd imagine, the value diminishes if you've already got a few bundled titles in your library.
  • Highlighted deals are where the real savings are: The majority of the Steam store back-catalogue will get some sort of price cut, but it's the 'Highlighted' deals (the ones promoted on the Steam front splash page) that tend to be more heavily discounted. These are the ones where you may fall into impulse-buy territory. Which leads us on to our next tip...
  • Only buy what you'll actually play right away: Once those 75% off signs start floating around, you're going to want to break open the piggy-bank. But the Steam Sales of yesteryear have proved that our desire for overflowing game libraries leaves us with more titles than we could ever humanly play. Save some cash, and only grab the ones you're really going to play – keep in mind that if you wait a while, the games will almost certainly get cheaper as they get older.
  • Use this browser extension: Want to make sure you're getting a good deal? Use the Enhanced Steam browser extension. This gives you a historical look at the price of all Steam games, letting you see just how many pennies have been saved.

Steam Lunar New Year Sale 2020

Image credit: Valve

What games will be in the Steam Sales?

First off, you shouldn't expect brand-new games to get the really steep discounts that have become synonymous with the Steam sales. You may see a 5%, or even 10% discount on games that have been recent big hits, but if they're still new enough to be spinning money without needing a price cut, don't expect that to change now that the sale is here.

But, with the exception of the newer titles, pretty much the entire store receives a 25% discount, if not higher, with a select few seeing a massive 90% off the list price. While the store now highlights what Valve considers the best deals, it's worth noting that flash and community sales are no longer in the mix, so feel free to pick a title on sale when you like – its discounted price will stand for the duration of the sale.

Gerald Lynch

Gerald is the Executive Editor for TechRadar, taking care of the site's home cinema, gaming, smart home, entertainment and audio output. He loves his gaming, but don't expect him to play with you unless your console is hooked up to a 4K HDR screen and a 7.1 surround system. Based out of TechRadar Towers, London, Gerald was previously Editor of Gizmodo UK. He dreams of the day when he can pop on a VR headset and meet Lawnmower Man-era Pierce Brosnan. Sadly, Pierce doesn't share the dream.