Since its first installment, the Sid Meier’s Civilization series has been the staple of turn-based strategy games, and its latest entry Civilization VI has been a smash hit since it was released in 2016. Whilst many still swear by its predecessor, Civilization V, millions still play this game every day, according to Steam Charts.
If you’re a fan of the Civilization series and looking for the next game to play, perhaps some of the choices on this list might tickle your fancy. We at TechEngage have compiled our picks for the best games for fans of Civilization VI. Some of these picks are turn-based strategy 4X games like Civ, but not all. We have also picked games of different genres that we’re confident you’ll like.
Inter-Galactic 4X Turn-Based Strategy
Whilst simply calling Stellaris “Civ 6 but in space” is accurate in a technical sense – with both games being huge turn-based 4X strategy games – but I think brandishing is as that diminishes the exceptionalism of this game. Truly put, if you’re into strategy games, this is a masterpiece.
For example, PCGamesN says in their review of Stellaris:
“When I put away my empires and get on with my day, the stories that have played out in these digital worlds embed themselves in my brain, and I so desperately want to tell people about them.”
In this game, your goal is to forge a galactic empire: surveying and exploring the cosmos, constructing new space stations, and inhabiting strange new planets. Discover buried treasures and galactic wonders as you spin a direction for your society, creating limitations and evolutions for your explorers. Alliances will form, and wars will be declared.
As much as it’s a strategy game, it’s a gaming experience that inspires complete awe and wonder. You can get so invested in your galactic empires, empathize with the ministers and people you rule over, and there’s not a single microtransaction in sight!
Every game begins with a civilization that has just discovered the means to travel between stars and is ready to explore the galaxy. Have your science ships survey and explore anomalies, leading you into a myriad of quests, introducing strange worlds with even stranger stories and discoveries that may completely change your outcome.
Reviews on Steam indicate “very positive” player feedback, with one positive review summing up their experience with this game:
“Stellaris is, IMO, a well-executed blend of 4X and Grand Strategy genres. What really makes it shine is its exploration layer, the sheer volume of customization options and possibilities in its sandbox galaxy and emergent storytelling.”
Steam reviewers seem caught up on their desire and success in building a xenophobic alien empire – hey, that might be your ironic fancy.
Whilst the list price for this game is $39, you can quite regularly see Stellaris on sale on Steam for under $10. If you like the idea of crafting your own expansive space empire and getting lost in your own creations, Stellaris is a critically acclaimed masterpiece right up your alley.
Critically acclaimed historical grand strategy
Whilst only being out for a measly four months, having been released in September 2020, it’s remarkable how popular and how revered Paradox Interactive’s latest grand strategy title has been. With any publications like VG 24/7 crowning this as a game of the year, and IGN in their 10/10 review exclaiming: “A new king of historical strategy has been crowned.”, it’s safe to say gamers love Crusader Kings III.
Crusader Kings III is the heir to a long legacy of historical grand strategy experiences and arrives with a host of new ways to ensure the success of your royal house. Choose a royal or noble house from a number of realms on a map that stretches from Iceland to India, from the Arctic Circle to Central Africa. Recruit men-at-arms units and powerful knights to supplement your royal levies.
Seduce other characters for love or political power. Use your spymaster to discover plots against your dynasty and your rule. Recruit agents to assist your schemes to undermine or murder anyone who stands between you and power.
Whilst other Paradox Interactive games seek to simulate huge battles, interstellar exploration, or societal evolution; Crusader Kings 3 focuses on the relationships between characters in their vast world to explore. You “win” this game by forging alliances with key states by marrying off your sister to a French bloke aged 90 that happens to be in charge of all of Normandy.
What’s remarkable is the sheer scale of the game. You can enter the fray in the ninth century when the majority of individual kingdoms are small and feisty. You can build up your empire, shaping history to your fancy. You have free reign over your people, your lives, and your marriages. You can divorce people on a whim; it’s all good fun.
CKIII is also much easier to get into than its predecessors, making it perfect to dive into even if you’re not familiar with grand strategy games. Well worth checking out!
City builder that saved the genre
I’ve always had a soft spot for city builders. I have fond memories of messing around in SimCity 4 building ridiculous metropolises of my own design like some alien mayor. The genre of city builders saw a dramatic downturn in 2013 with the release of the much panned SimCity reboot, which above all else was a buggy mess that lacked the scale and possibilities of other, greater city builders of the past.
Then Cities: Skylines came along. Cities: Skylines is a modern take on the classic city simulation. The game introduces new gameplay elements to realize the thrill and hardships of creating and maintaining a real city whilst expanding on some well-established tropes of the city building experience.
Playing as the mayor of your city, you’ll be faced with balancing essential requirements such as education, water, electricity, police, fire fighting, healthcare, and much more, along with your city’s real economy system. Citizens within your city react fluidly, with gravitas, and with an air of authenticity to a multitude of gameplay scenarios. Colossal Order’s extensive experience developing the Cities in Motion series is fully utilized in a fully fleshed out and well-crafted local traffic simulation.
In their 10/10 review, The Escapist remarks Cities: Skylines is “The finest city builder in over a decade, Cities: Skylines’s few flaws are so minor I only noticed them after hours of enjoyment.”. If you’re interested in being a mayoral overload of your own precious city, I highly recommend Cities: Skylines.
Factory, automation, and evil monsters, what more could you ever want?
Factorio is a game about building and creating automated factories to produce items of increasing complexity within an infinite 2D world. Use your imagination to design your factory, combine simple elements into ingenious structures, and finally protect it from the creatures who don’t really like you.
You will be mining resources, researching technologies, building infrastructure, automating production, and fighting enemies.
In the beginning, you will find yourself chopping trees and mining ores like some 2D top-down Minecraft, but soon you’ll be crafting mechanical arms and transport belts by hand, and in a short time, you can become an industrial powerhouse with huge solar fields, oil refining and cracking.
However, this heavy exploitation of the planet’s resources does not sit nicely with the locals, so you will have to be prepared to defend yourself and your machine empire. Simply put, in Factorio, everyone hates you.
Join forces with other players in cooperative Multiplayer, create huge factories, collaborate and delegate tasks between you and your friends. Add mods to increase your enjoyment, from small tweaks and helper mods to complete game overhauls. Factorio’s ground-up Modding support has allowed content creators from around the world to design interesting and innovative features.
With an overwhelmingly positive response from players, Factorio is loved by all. One gamer says:
“No other game in the history of gaming handles the logistics side of management simulator so perfectly.”
Notch, the creator of Minecraft, said candidly:
“I see conveyor belts when I close my eyes. I may have been binging Factorio lately.”
One Steam reviewer writes:
“50+ hours spent playing this game I finally finished the game! COVID19 gave me more time to finally start a new world with a challenge of not using lasers turrets. This game is in the top 10 best games I ever played in my life! The enjoyment is indescribable and the satisfaction playing this game is unique.”