Sure, stunning games that punish your graphics card help highlight the kind of cutting-edge visuals that make the PC the gaming platform of choice for millions upon millions of gamers around the globe. There’s a reason “Can it run Crysis?” is a meme.
But the games that should truly be applauded are the ones that do more with less—the ones that manage to drip beauty even on more modest PCs due to their superb graphical scaling. No, not retro-styled games that work on any PC, but modern titles that shine even with lower-end graphics cards. The vast majority of graphics cards sales are for sub-$250 GPUs, after all
So! Here’s a handful of relatively recent games that look stunning even on entry-level graphics cards (and, admittedly, even better on high-end rigs). Bonus: They’re all great, too. Because all the eye candy in the world doesn’t matter if the core gameplay’s ugly.