Photo: Firaxis Games/2K Games
Button Mash

The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked 

Ranker Games
Originally by
Updated March 23, 2020 32k votes 4.6k voters 71.5k views

List Rules Strategy games, both turn-based and real-time.

When we're talking best strategy games, there are plenty of fantastic entries out there, even games that are decades old. Some games are meant less for the reflexes and more for the mind, after all. As strategy video games grow more complex, looking back at some of these older entries might be the right way to get yourself acclimated to the ever-changing styles and valuable tactics within the games. Take a look at our list of strategy games, covering both real-time and turn-based genres, to see what you should be playing next!

Whether looking at the classic Warcraft series or the Civilization games, both have been around for decades and their influence on the genre are second to possibly only each other. Revitalizations of old games like XCOM: Enemy Unknown brings old school games but places them in a modern context. 

So take a look at our list of the best strategy video games and then vote for your favorites! Vote down the games about strategy that don't give your brain an enjoyable workout. If you've played them all, rerank to create your own strategy games list!

list ordered by
1
Civilization V is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 2010 (Firaxis Games)
2
Age of Empires II: The A... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 1999 (Ensemble Studios)
3
Civilization IV is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 2005 (Firaxis Games)
4
StarCraft is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 1998 (THQ)
5
Warcraft III: Reign of C... is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 2002 (Blizzard Entertainment)
6
Rome: Total War is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 2004 (Feral Interactive)
7
XCOM: Enemy Unknown is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 2012 (Firaxis Games)
8
Age of Empires III is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 2005 (Robot Entertainment)
9
Age of Empires is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 1997 (Ensemble Studios)
10
Civilization III is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 2001 (Aspyr)
11
Command & Conquer: R... is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 1996 (Westwood Studios)
12
StarCraft II: Heart of t... is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 2013 (Blizzard Entertainment)
13
Command & Conquer is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 1995 (Looking Glass Studios)
14
Civilization is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
15
Age of Mythology is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Ferry73 added Released: 2002 (Ensemble Studios)
16
Company of Heroes is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 2006 (Relic Entertainment)
17
Medieval II: Total War ... is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Ferry73 added Released: 2006 (The Creative Assembly)
18
Civilization II is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 1996 (MicroProse)
19
Heroes of Might and Magi... is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 1999 (New World Computing)
20
Total War: Shogun 2 is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 2011 (The Creative Assembly)
21
Final Fantasy Tactics Ad... is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 2003 (Square Enix)
22
Crusader Kings II is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
23
Homeworld is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 1999 (Relic Entertainment)
24
Plague Inc. is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
25
Rise of Nations is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Strategy Games of All Time, Ranked
Released: 2003 (Big Huge Games)