Turn-based strategy games bring out the more cerebral undertones of the genre – the break afforded by ‘turns’ allows us khổng lồ think, ponder and plan our moves with as much expert precision as we can muster. Witnessingthat mater plan unfold can create untold levels of satisfaction, và suddenly you fancy yourself the master tactician.
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This genre is also home to lớn the ‘one more turn’ trope – that feeling of near-addiction that compels you khổng lồ cliông xã the ‘End Turn’ button just one more time to lớn see what happens. Maybe you’re waiting khổng lồ see the outcome of a daring attaông chồng, maybe you’re just trying to click through some downtime. We also have sầu thebest strategy games on PCif you’re looking to expvà beyond petty concepts lượt thích ‘turns’.
This is a living danh mục, in the sense that there are many worthy candidates and not enough room to fit them all in. Every so often (especially as new games come out), we’ll give sầu this article a refresh và an update to lớn bringgive sầu other titles their turn in the spotlight. Also, don’t be alarmed that games lượt thích Civ 6 aren’t on the list: You can check out our guide lớn the best 4X games to lớn see our thoughts on that particular niche.
the best Turn-Based Strategy Games
The best turn-based strategy games on PC are:Gears TacticsPanzer Corps 2Unity of Commvà 2BattleTechBattle BrothersWargrooveFrozen Synapse 2Warhammer 40,000: BattlesectorThe Battle for WesnothXCOM 2: War of the Chosen
Let’s take a look at some of our favourite turn-based strategy games…
There have sầu been quite a few challengers to lớn XCOM’s turn-based tactical throne in recent years. Some have been good, some not so good. As much as theGears of Warthird-person shooter franchise is well regarded, we’re still surprised at how good itsturn-based tactics spin-off is inGears Tactics.Set before the events ofthe original Gears of War,this game is essentially a series of tactical battles strung together by a narrative sầu and some light progression mechanics.
There’s no strategy layer, & while there’s some persistence for main characters it mainly revolves around loot and some basic skill-trees. It’s not perfect, but it’s imperfections stvà khổng lồ further highlight just how solid the rest of it is. One innovation they’ve sầu tried khổng lồ carry over from the shooter series is the ‘trùm battle’ elements. These vị work in the tactical sphere, but can still be a bit clunky. Still, if you’re looking for some to lớn scratch that turn-based tactics itch, this is one of the best newcomers in a while. Read ourGears Tacticsnhận xét for more.
Panzer Corps 2
This one’s a bit more on the hardcore side, but when it comes to historical turn-based strategy games, thePanzer Corpsfranchise is king.Panzer Corps 2builds on the original game’s success và couples it with a br& new 3D engine. The scale is a bit abstract – a single tank can actually represent hundreds of vehicles – but it allows you play sweeping campaigns on maps that can represent chunks of entire countries.
Related:Want more WW2 Games? We’ve sầu got you covered.
It’s a combat-focused game, so you don’t need to lớn worry about building units, but you WILL have sầu to lớn worry about keeping your forces supplied as they blitz across the bản đồ. Tactical options such as encirclement, supporting fire & breaking down units into lớn smaller ‘mini’ versions for a decent flank means you’ll have plenty of options with which khổng lồ take that key objective. It’s notso far removed from a hex-based, WW2-themed Advanced Wars.
Unity of Comm& 2
An excellent strategy game that doubles up as a viable gateway to lớn the world of digital war games, Unity of Commvà 2 does everything its predecessor did và more. By changing up the scenario thiết kế & adding in new elements lượt thích HQ’s and more meaningful meta-chiến dịch, few repeats of the same mission will play out the same, althoughUoChas always had a trace of ‘puzzle’ DNA within it, which is still true but not khổng lồ the same extend as the first game.
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Unity of Commvà 2takes players to the more known waters of the Western front, starting with the closing stages of the battle for North Africa, before moving on to lớn the invasion of Sicily, Italy before finally allowing you to re-live the Normandy campaigns. As you play through the grvà chiến dịch, your army units and HQs will grow and improve sầu over time, and there’s also a light thẻ mechanic that allows you lớn play a limited number of special actions that can make or break an offensive sầu.
BattleTechis a meaty, ruminative sầu turn-based mech battler that does as much justice to lớn its FASA tabletop roots as it does to making a ponderous, complex miniature game come alive sầu in digital khung. Its depth & sprawl is the hàng hóa of thirty-odd years of lore & gaming, andits one of the best mech games out there right now.
This is a game that demands commitment, selling the idea of MechWarrior combat being anything but brief. There’s plenty of crunch lớn encounters on the tactical level, with heat and weapon management coalescing with environmental factors và position.Mechs are beautifully detailed, evoking just the right set of old Ral Patha miniatures and the thankful modernisation ofMechWarrior Online’s artistic precedent. We also have a mech build guide to lớn help people get khổng lồ grips with the wealth of options.
At the time of writing, active sầu development ofBattleTechhas ended as the studio moves lớn other projects, but they did release a lot of không lấy phí content and three major expansions:Flashpoint,Urban Warfare& Heavy Metal.
Battle Brothersis ostensibly theGame of Thrones:Bron Simulator. A deliciously low-fantasy mercenary manager that is refreshingly không tính phí of trope-ridden kings and kingdoms, OverHyper Studios’ hex-based combat game is immediately accessible, balanced by brutality và permadeath.
There’s a hand-crafted unique to lớn the game, appealing in much the same way asUnity of Commvà 2. Gryên little busts of ugly mercenaries plug their way across swamps và forests, paper-dolled with whatever arms and armor you assigned, engaging in violent combat with all manner of armies. What’s most impressive aboutBattle Brothersis the impact with which it conveys every hit, stab, slice & shot.
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Each successful attack is incredibly visceral, making sure you know that there are no do-overs in theBattle Brothersworld. By the end of each encounter, the field is littered with loosed arrows, blood and corpses. Those who diedare indeed gone for good. And those that survive sầu just may live sầu a little longer.
While not theultimateAdvanced Wars PC game we could haveasked for,this highly anticipated turn-based tactics title certainly did not disappoint when it released in February 2019. An excellent visual kiến thiết coupled with a rich tactical experience across all the factions meant that this was a game that was easy lớn learn, challenging lớn master, but never anything less than a delight khổng lồ play.
The real strength of Wargroove however is its built-in future proofing. There’s plenty lớn vày & try out straight out of the box, but a powerful & robust editor means that there will be some fantastic user-generated nội dung coming down the pipe in the months ahead. People are already recreating maps & entire campaigns from other classics lượt thích Fire Emblem and Advanced Wars, so we can’t wait khổng lồ see what the else the community does with the game. Read our Wargroove reviewfor more.
Frozen Synapse 2
Indie sensationFrozen Synapseis very much deserving of its accolades. A simultaneous turn-based breakdown ofCounterStrikeat its heart, Mode 7 Games condensed the fundamentals of the first-person shooter — movement, stance, tốc độ & vectors — into lớn five-second parcels of plotting direction and behaviour. While the sequel didn’t try to mess with this simple & effective formula too much, it did try lớn instil a sense of purpose with a ‘big picture’ strategy layer.
Frozen Synapse 2’s main offering is a grand-strategy layer. You run a private security firm in a procedurally generated thành phố, và your goal is lớn grow, keep the other organisations in kiểm tra, while also khuyến mãi with a mysterious new foe that’s appeared on the scene. Take contracts, hire recruits lớn fill out your squads, và fight your enemies in battlegrounds that vary depending on where the action takes place. The initial offering is functional and imperfect, but it’s already proven khổng lồ be a great way ofoffering an excellent tactical experience with meaning and persistence.
We’re thankfully not short on Warhammer games, & the good news is they’re getting better. Battlesector is a pretty decent attempt at distilling the tabletop game inkhổng lồ something that is authentic, but still had the flair & spectacle of a digital game. It’s similar khổng lồ a previous entry on this các mục – Warhammer 40,000: Sanctus Reach.
It’s been developed by the same studio that brought you Battlestar Galactica Deadlochồng, one of our favourite strategy games of all time. The game is pretty, it works quite smoothly, and overall represents an excellent foundation to lớn build upon, as you’ll note in our Battlesector nhận xét.
It’s got some noticeable drawbacks too – the scenario design leaves much to be desired, & the campaign isn’t that replayable. You’ve also only got the two factions khổng lồ play with at the moment as well. It offers an excellent vehicle for you lớn live sầu out your Space Marine fantasies, but if you’re not a 40K người your mileage will vary. It’ll take time to lớn become truly great. Speaking of good Warhammer games, the recently releasedWarhammer Age of Sigmar: Storm Ground is also surprisingly good as well.
The Battle for Wesnoth
What kind of turn-based danh sách would it be without some sort of open-source or không lấy phí elder statesman of the genre? Just inching out People’s General, The Battle for Wesnoth is a sprawling suite of tactical turn-based hexery. The game itself is accommodating, the community modules vast and varied, & heông chồng, it’s even been ported to lớn phones. Wesnoth feels like it’s at an aesthetic cross-roads between traditional Japanese SRPGS and western heavy-hitters like Heroes of Might & Magic.
Related: We’ve got an excellent list of miễn phí games to play on PC.
Light enough khổng lồ run on the most dismal of systems, và not costing a brass razoo, The Battle of Wesnoth is truly the people’s game.
XCOM 2: War of the Chosen
XCOM 2 might have sầu had some initial technical niggles around launch, but thereafter has been patched up to lớn shine as intended. Coupled with War of the Chosen, XCOM 2’s pot-stirring expansion that throws antagonistic human factions inkhổng lồ the phối, there’s little reason not lớn have sầu Firaxis’ second tilt at this magisterial series in your library.
Secondary objectives also add an interesting tension to the game, as well as the looming threat of a grvà alien program that cooks away in the background, harbouring a fail-state if left to lớn mature. War of the Chosen elevates XCOM 2 from admirable sequel to lớn essential addition to the long-running franchise. The story might put humanity on the back foot, but XCOM has never been more ahead.
If you’re looking at reading more, we’ve sầu got a guide khổng lồ all of the XCOM 2 DLC available, as well as some tips & tricks to lớn help you get started. Forveteran players, we’ve sầu got an XCOM 2 class guide, as well as a guide to lớn the best XCOM 2 mods.
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More Turn-Based Strategy Games
From recent releases, lớn recommendations and previous entries on this các mục, here are some other great turn-based strategy games lớn kiểm tra out:Empire of SinMöbius Front ‘83Space Hulk TacticsPhoenix PointCorruption 2029Six Ages: Ride lượt thích the WindCrying SunsNarcos: Rise of the CartelsInvisible Inc.Inlớn the Breach
We’ll update this các mục over time as more turn-based strategy games release that deserve sầu a top spot.