What are the best games like Civilization?
The Civilization series is one of the most popular turn-based strategy games in the world, but it isn’t alone.
There are several other games in this genre that often don’t get the attention they deserve, so today, we’re changing that.
If you are a fan of Sid Meier’s Civilization, we rounded up several other similar games you should check out!
The 10 Best Games Like Civilization
The games on this list were chosen based on how comparable they are to the Civilization series and its play style.
While they are distinctly unique, they retain shared aspects that make them must-plays for turn-based strategy fans.
If you’re ready to challenge your skills, here’s our list of the 10 best games like Civilization:
10. Warlock: Masters of the Arcane
Kicking off our list is a classic PC turn-based strategy game, Warlock: Masters of the Arcane.
Comparable to Civilization V, this game takes place on a map featuring a hexagon grid on which players can move their assets.
Every player starts as a Great Mage who must lead their own factions to victory by utilizing perks, abilities, and resource management.
Players can even customize their Great Mages with backstories and different starting abilities.
Throughout the game, you will have to manage gold, food, and mana while constructing buildings to provide extra benefits.
Like Civilization V, some tiles on the map will also provide bonuses depending on what you build there.
Along with battling other factions, there is also aggressive wildlife, monsters, and demons that you have to be prepared to defend against.
There are also religion and diplomacy mechanics that help make it even more like the Civilization series.
Although it was released back in 2012, Warlock: Masters of the Arcane remains a must-play in the strategy game genre.
9. Sigma Theory: Global Cold War
This turn-based strategy game takes place in a futuristic world where a global cold war is taking place.
Riveling the best turn-based PS5 games, Sigma Theory gives players a lot of fun and engaging mechanics to play with.
Starting out, you have access to elite agents and tactical drones that can be used along with subterfuge or diplomacy.
Espionage is a huge part of the game as you race to make your nation the first to possess the “Sigma Theory.”
Hailed as the greatest scientific discovery, Sigma Theory in the game has the potential to decimate entire nations or even provide immortality.
In-game, you can recruit various special agents to support your missions, and each agent has their own unique traits, stories, and motivations.
However, you will also have to watch out for agents from other countries who will try to spy on you!
Best of all, there is an in-depth tech tree that can grant you the power to destabilize the economy or create powerful soldiers.
All of this, coupled with Sigma Theory’s gorgeous art style, make it a game you definitely shouldn’t pass up!
Humankind is up next, and it is very similar to other strategy games like the Civilization series.
In this game, players must lead their chosen civilization through six eras, beginning in the nomadic age.
You must decide how your civilization will expand, develop, and interact with others as the game progresses.
Along with this, players will gain resources such as gold, science, influence, and food that can be spent to advance.
Many of these mechanics will feel very familiar to fans of the Civilization series, making it easy to learn your way around.
However, unlike Civ, which has multiple victory scenarios, winning in Humankind is all about your Fame score.
Fame is earned by accomplishing things, such as accumulating a lot of gold, winning many battles, or building world wonders.
If you feel you’re not gaining fame quickly enough, Humankind also allows you to change cultures mid-game, meaning you’re not locked into a play style.
There are also many expansion packs that add new cultures, so you can always experience something new!
7. Warhammer 40,000: Gladius – Relics of War
You don’t need to know the history of Warhammer 40k to enjoy this 4X turn-based strategy game.
Relics of War is the first grand strategy game set in the Warhammer universe, and it is extremely challenging.
This game allows players to lead one of the four Warhammer factions, each of which comes with its own unique playstyle and tech trees.
Every world is randomly generated, and you will need to try and locate powerful artifacts to give your faction an edge.
You can also build cities and fortifications to expand your reach and power over the world and your rivals.
Like the tabletop game. Relics of War allows players to use devastating weapons and tactical operations to take on enemies.
Relics of War is also one of the best online games to play with friends, thanks to its online co-op and PvP modes.
Even if you know nothing about Warhammer lore, it is easy to become very addicted to this game.
Especially since it shares a lot in common with the Civ series, with complex and evolving systems that make every playthrough unique.
6. Total War: Three Kingdoms
The 12th mainline entry in the Total War franchise, Three Kingdoms is a turn-based game that focuses on real-time tactics.
Players can control one of 12 factions with the goal of unifying China and becoming the supreme ruler.
All battles in this game revolve around generals, and players can have up to three on the battlefield at once.
Sieges will end when all hostile generals have been dealt with or when the central portion of a city has been captured.
However, because all generals have their own personalities and desires, you will also have to appease them to keep them performing well.
If the happiness of a general drops too low, there will be a variety of repercussions to deal with that can impact combat.
There are also two different game modes; Romance and Records, the first of which gives generals almost superhuman abilities.
Records, on the other hand, takes a more historically accurate approach to gameplay, with no super abilities and more authentic equipment.
If you’re a fan of the combat system in the Civilization series, Total War: Three Kingdoms is well worth checking out!
Think of Stellaris as a mix between Civilization and the best games like Mass Effect, with everything taking place on a galactic scale.
In Stellaris, players control an interstellar civilization and are tasked with exploring and colonizing their region of space.
However, there are various other spacefaring civilizations to deal with, as well as events that can totally disrupt the balance of power.
As a real-time grand strategy game, Stellaris is all about building your own galactic empire, which can be either premade or customized.
There are many different routes you can take your civilization down, either peaceful and diplomatic or warlike and destructive.
Advancing in Stellaris revolves around unlocking traditions and technologies which progressively cost more to achieve.
If that isn’t enough, there is also the Nemesis DLC, where players have the main goal of destroying everyone else in the galaxy!
This DLC unlocks many more destructive paths and gameplay elements that cater specifically to this goal.
With an almost endless space to play around in, Stellaris is the ultimate sci-fi turn-based strategy experience!
If you’re a Civ fan who also loves playing the best free MMORPG games, Freeciv is worth checking out.
This multiplayer turn-based strategy game is free open software that best resembles Civilization II.
Freeciv kicks off in 4000 B.C., where players take the role of tribal leaders who must guide and grow their civilizations.
The civilization that wins is the one that either wipes everyone else out or accomplishes space colonization first.
However, there is a deadline to achieve everything, and if no civilization has achieved any of these feats, the one with the highest score wins.
Points are earned based on the size of civilizations, wealth accumulation, and scientific and cultural achievements.
While it isn’t as graphically fine-tuned as Civilization VI, Freeciv is, by far, the best alternative to the Sid Meier games.
There is also a multiplayer component to this game as well, with many longturn communities spawning from it.
3. Endless Legend
Endless Legend is a turn-based strategy game with a fantasy twist and a main goal of dominating the world of Auriga.
Playing as one of the 14 racial factions, players can use war and diplomacy while developing new technologies and building new cities.
The layout and ecosystem of each map are randomized for every new game, and it uses a hexagonal grid, similar to Civ.
Since titles are randomly generated, every playthrough is unique and will present a new set of challenges to overcome.
Like Civ, players have various resources to manage, including food, industry, money, science, and influence.
There are nine different types of victory, including an economic, diplomatic, and scientific victory, which means you’ve excelled in those areas.
However, you can also complete all of your faction’s quests, kill everyone else, or be the only civilization left with control of its starting capital.
This provides a decent amount of challenge, as some of these endings are much harder to achieve than others.
2. Europa Universalis 4
Europa Universalis 4 is a grand strategy game where players control a country from 1444 until 1821.
While the game is set up to kick off with historically accurate events, players can completely change things as they gain power.
Using economic and military power or diplomacy, players have a lot of freedom to try and change the world.
Like Civilization, there is also a religious system that provides bonuses and technology trees that you can advance.
There are also random events that sometimes appear that can either help or harm your progress.
While it doesn’t cover as huge of a time frame as the Civilization series does, Europa Universalis 4 doesn’t lack content.
It also has support for mods that even includes things like an Elder Scrolls and World of Warcraft universe.
You can also play against others online in multiplayer or use Ironman settings in single-player that remove manual saves.
If you’re a fan of Civ and want something similar yet different enough to be fresh and unique, you have to check out Europa Universalis 4!
1. Age of Wonders: Planetfall
Taking our number one spot is Age of Wonders: Planet Fall, the fifth installment in the Age of Wonders series.
Comparable to Civilization VI with a sci-fi twist, Planetfall features six different factions and a leader of each that players can customize.
The world’s map is also procedurally generated so that every playthrough will be unique and different.
As the game progresses, players can expand to control more cities, find more resources, and invade hostile camps.
There are multiple ways to achieve victory, including conquest, diplomacy, or destruction through doomsday technology.
Players can also choose between the single-player campaign or a skirmish mode, as well as an online multiplayer option.
Not only is it one of the best multiplayer games of all time, but its advanced AI makes even single-player campaigns challenging.
There is a lot to do in Planetfall, and its combat system is also one of the best in the genre, with exceptional animations and graphics.
If you love the Civilization series, Age of Wonders: Planetfall is a game you absolutely won’t want to miss out on!
We hope you’ve enjoyed our list of the 10 best games like Civilization, and found some new ones to try out!
Each of these games brings something unique to the strategy game genre while remaining similar enough to Civ for fans to feel comfortable.
However, we highly recommend checking out Planetfall first, as it stands out as one of the best Civ-like games ever made!
Here’s a quick recap of the 10 best games like Civilization:
- Age of Wonders: Planetfall
- Europa Universalis 4
- Endless Legend
- Total War: Three Kingdoms
- Warhammer 40,000: Gladius – Relics of War
- Sigma Theory: Global Cold War
- Warlock: Masters of the Arcane
If you enjoyed this list, you might want to check out the following articles:
- The 10 Best Games Like Age of Empires
- The 10 Best Games Like Sims
- The 10 Best Games Like Clash of Clans
- The 10 Best Games Like X-COM
Which of these games will you play first? Leave a comment below.
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