Best 4X Games To Play Today – Top Ten List In 2021

As the latest installment of the space 4X games genre, Stellaris has been a success since its release in 2015 — and it still regularly appears on our list of the best 4X games. Stellaris offers a grand strategy experience that seamlessly blends together the management and exploration of distant, alien worlds with the complex and challenging strategic decisions of traditional 4X games.

In the future, 4X games will be around for a lot longer than you might expect, and we’re going to be playing them a lot longer still. We’re going to be playing them so long that people are going to be mistaking our old 4X games for actual modern games that they can play for years to come. In fact, people are going to be playing 4X games so long that they’re going to have descendants that are still being played around a hundred years from now.

Years ago, when video games were in a different realm, there was only one genre of game that everyone was playing. It was a phenomenon that defined the genre for more than a decade, singlehandedly changing the way we play and think. Today, it is a very hard genre to come by, and the period of dominance has long passed.

PC gaming has a long history and many genres have emerged from it, giving players access to games that use the computer to its full potential.

One of those genres is 4X, a rather unusual title that requires some knowledge of the past to fully understand.

Before exploring the best games of the 4X genre, a little history on what it means.

What are 4X games?

The term 4X dates back to 1993 and is attributed to one Alan Emrich, who coined it when he wrote the Master of Orion preview for Computer Gaming World.

The game was rated XXXX, a rating for adult videos, and the letters 4x were used to indicate exploration, expansion, exploitation and extinction.

Each term has a different meaning in the context of the genre, but what is most important in 4X games is the presence of each element, as well as the emphasis on strategy.

While many games released since the genre’s inception years ago fit this description, some stand out more than others and really showcase the power of 4X games.

The best 4X games of today

Here’s a list of ten games in the 4X genre that you should try out.

1. Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri

The one on the 12th. Released in February 1999, Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri is a spin-off of the Civilization franchise and takes a more sci-fi approach to 4X games.

But if you’re familiar with the series, you’ll find many of the same elements here, just with different names and types of items.

While strategy is an integral part of 4X games, it can be difficult to keep a coherent narrative during a deep strategy game, which is usually more focused on developing its systems and expanding them as much as possible.

Alpha Centuari succeeds while keeping the story relevant in the game. This is achieved through the initial context of a sci-fi storyline, well-implemented factions with compelling reasons, and fully voiced faction leaders that make them memorable and help the story stand out.

Because of its approach to the story, this game is one of the 4X games that no one should miss.

2. Infinite space 2

One of the best 4X games on this list is none other than Endless Space 2.

This game from Amplitude Studios has gained notoriety for its presentation. Where other games in the 4X genre get bogged down in inadequate and downright boring graphics and interface navigation, Endless Space 2 breaks the trend by offering intuitive systems and stunning graphics.

Considering how silly strategy games can be, this game makes it all accessible with tips you can get with a simple click.

In addition, none of the actions require time to be performed correctly. With gorgeous graphics and political intrigue, you can’t go wrong with Endless Space 2.

3. The sins of the solar empire: Hoisting

Unlike most of the other games mentioned, Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion is different because it is a standalone expansion, rather than a standalone game.

Rebellion succeeds because it significantly expands an already excellent game. This is accentuated by the addition of sub-factions that not only add extra gameplay elements, but also strengthen the story at the same time.

This expansion also works well because it introduces new players to the game without overwhelming them with a long story. It’s not a complete game, but Rebellion adds to it and simplifies it, which makes it interesting.

4. Orion Master II: Battle of Antares

Master Orion II: Battles in Antares are defined by complexity. Some games in the 4X genre are successful without being overly complicated.

In Master of Orion II this principle is fully applied. One of the most profound features of the game is the creation of alien races.

Instead of simply adding new races, players can create their own races with their own strengths and weaknesses.

In addition to the existing galaxies, a new star system has been introduced that uses a large number of planets, increasing the total number of colonies it can host.

These gameplay elements are just the tip of the iceberg, but the immense depth present in the game makes it perhaps the most rewarding of all.

5. Warlock II: Excluded

Warlock II : The Exiled is remarkable because it proves that the 4X genre can transcend science fiction and history. Civilization players will feel the warmth and familiarity of Warlock II, as it incorporates many elements from the series, such as. B. technology, and integrates it into the fantastically created framework.

But what makes the difference is the Exile mode. The first game in the series was based entirely on a sandbox mode. The new mode attempts to add a story layer to the game, where the world is divided into different planes of existence and you must navigate through the dimensions to defeat a villain.

Exile mode allows you to make strategic decisions through the presence of multiple dimensions, and combined with the aesthetics and setting of Warlock II, it has a niche all its own.

6. Sid Meier’s Civilization 5

It’s no secret that Sid Meier’s Civilization series is the most well-known 4X franchise. The fifth major episode of the series shows that there is a meaning behind fame.

Civilization V is relatively young considering the age of the other games, but it has made some much needed important changes to the series, and it is these changes that make the game so well received.

He abandoned the square tiles and replaced them with a hex-based system that reinvigorated the strategic play of the series.

More importantly, the culture is finally viable and religion is something that affects the systems of the game. History favors those who innovate, and Civilization V innovates in abundance.

7. Mondes lointains : Universe

Next on the list of best or most enjoyable 4X games is Distant Worlds. Achieving automation can bring not only relief, but also great satisfaction when you see systems working before your eyes without having to contribute yourself.

It’s essentially what makes programmers do what they do. Faraway worlds: Universe integrates automation into its design. It’s a 4X experience where you can choose exactly where you want to spend your time.

For some players, managing the fleet or the army comes second to other aspects such as research or politics.

In Distant Worlds, you can give standing orders to your army while you focus on other, more important aspects.

The 4X genre is almost always synonymous with multitasking and micromanagement, but Universe respects the player’s interests, setting it apart from its direct competitors.

8. Sword of the Stars

The core of 4X games is that they have four different objectives and thus generally require a lot of micromanagement.

Some games love trivia and do it very well, creating interesting and complex systems that engage your mind.

Sword of the Stars differs from other games in that it eschews diplomacy and other micromanaging to focus on military combat.

This simplifies the process and allows the player to focus on building one of the three ship types and controlling it to wreak havoc in space.

Sword of the Stars is probably one of the most accessible games for beginners and deserves mention for its goal-oriented approach.

9. Fallen Enchantress: Legendary Heroes

A Fallen Witch: Legendary Heroes follows in the footsteps of Sins of the Solar Empire: Rebellion is a standalone expansion that stands alone.

Stardock studio, known for developing PC games, has released a game called Elemental: War of Magic in 2010.

After receiving mixed reviews, it fell into oblivion amidst a host of other games released over the past decade, and Fallen Enchantress: Legendary Heroes is a sequel that brings significant improvements that make this fantastic 4X one of the best.

The most obvious changes in this expansion are the way heroes are now controlled, as well as skill trees and intelligent AI. Heroes are now obtained through fame, which is obtained by completing various quests, such as for example by building monuments or completing quests.

In the past, heroes could only be found by exploration, and this gave too much importance to your starting position. The addition of skill trees adds a nice layer of customization to embellish your leader, and the AI taking advantage of your weaker units adds a lot of challenge and shows that the developer is taking significant steps to improve their product.

10. Reigns 5: Faith warrior

While some games focus on expanding your influence in space, Dominions 5 focuses on expanding the domain of your deity, and this variation on the genre couldn’t be more fun.

It is a game that rewards players who come into the game with existing knowledge about the various mythologies of the world.

After choosing the era in which you start the game and the country in which you play, you can choose the god of your choice. This choice is very important because you will get the most rewards if it is thematically related to the nation you have chosen.

In fact, some gods are inaccessible to certain groups because otherwise there would be no point. You’d think that’s the whole game, but it’s just a small, satisfying part of a much bigger picture.

Dominion 5: Warriors of the Faith has all the familiar elements of the 4X genre, but building around a god and playing for the ultimate goal makes this game a refreshing experience for fans looking to impose their will on others.

Short and sweet

I hope this list of the best 4X games was helpful to some of you. The 4X genre is characterized by exploration, expansion, exploitation, and extermination as you establish control and dominance over others.

Each of the games mentioned has something unique to offer, whether it’s a different setting, a different approach to combat, or something else.

If you are a fan of 4X games and are looking for something new for you or if you are new to the genre, chances are you will find something that interests you among the games discussed.

It’s the discovery of a new game to dive into that reflects what you’re doing in the game, and that satisfaction is what makes 4X games so successful.For a PC gamer, the best 4X games are those that are not only challenging, but also provide an immersive experience. That’s why I’ve compiled a list of the best 4X games out today. I’ve obviously excluded mobile games which lack a proper interface for making strategic decisions, and I’ve also passed over the 4X titles that are either clones of the same games, or are gimmicky MMORPGs. This list is based on my impressions of the top 4X games on the market today.. Read more about best mac 4x games and let us know what you think.{“@context”:””,”@type”:”FAQPage”,”mainEntity”:[{“@type”:”Question”,”name”:”What is the best 4X space strategy game?”,”acceptedAnswer”:{“@type”:”Answer”,”text”:” The best 4X space strategy game is Stellaris.”}},{“@type”:”Question”,”name”:”What is 4X in games?”,”acceptedAnswer”:{“@type”:”Answer”,”text”:” 4X is a genre of video games that are typically turn-based strategy games.”}},{“@type”:”Question”,”name”:”What makes a good 4X game?”,”acceptedAnswer”:{“@type”:”Answer”,”text”:” A good 4X game is one that has a lot of depth and complexity, but also has a lot of accessibility. It’s not too hard to learn the basics, but it’s also not so easy that you can’t get into the game.”}}]}

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best 4X space strategy game?

The best 4X space strategy game is Stellaris.

What is 4X in games?

4X is a genre of video games that are typically turn-based strategy games.

What makes a good 4X game?

A good 4X game is one that has a lot of depth and complexity, but also has a lot of accessibility. It’s not too hard to learn the basics, but it’s also not so easy that you can’t get into the game.

Greg Baskerville
Greg Baskerville
Gaming Blogger & Musician. Playing games since the Amiga days in the 1980's, and a handy guitarist.

Related Articles

Popular Articles