Best 4x Games for Gamers Looking to Find Their Next Favorite Game

Best 4x Games for Gamers Looking to Find Their Next Favorite Game

4x mobile strategy games are best for gamers who want to play something new. For those unfamiliar with 4x games, it stands for explore, expand, exploit and exterminate. This genre is best suited for players who love map exploration and building up their empires through military conquest or economic prowess. These games are available in a sci-fi setting, based on human history, the modern age, or in a fantasy setting.

If you’re looking for the best 4x games, then you’ve come to the right place! We compiled a list of the best 4x games that will keep you entertained all year long!

What is a 4X strategy game?

A 4X strategy game refers to the genre of strategy games where players assume direct control of an empire, and their objective is usually to conquer the world by defeating all other empires that stand in their way. Searching for best empire building games mobile? Check out our related blog post!

The victory conditions in a strategy game can vary from having the highest score when it’s over, to defeating all opponents in battle. In most games of this genre, you usually start off with a small empire and then build your way up into a large empire that is capable of conquering other empires or civilizations.

In this genre, the player is in charge of an empire and their goal is to grow it from a few small cities into an enormous one that dominates the world by military force or political influence. Multiple victory conditions are usually present.

There are different ways in real life where someone can go about achieving that goal but games differ in how closely they follow them. For example, some may control your economy while others may keep it more abstracted and just present a few numbers with a graph on-screen showing economic performance at different points throughout history.

Military combat may be heavily abstracted, emphasizing combat via spreadsheets rather than tactical battles out of concern for the player’s time. This can be done in a way where players are still forced to make choices about the best use of their available units and resources, though it may not always be clear what those best uses are until after one or many battles occur.

Some games place more emphasis on research for new technology than others do with some just having very little options for technological advancement at all while others provide dozens of different tech trees that branch off into numerous sub-trees along the 4x spectrum between purely economic play, military conquest, or something else entirely like diplomacy or good relations with other races/civilizations. The best 4x games allow every type of playstyle.

If you have been looking for a game to keep your mind engaged, take the time to check out our blog post on offline empire building games for Android.

How do you get into 4X strategy games?

The best way to get into 4X strategy games is to talk to strategy gamers who can give you a feel for what the genre has to offer, how it works, and what the major games are. Strategy games are a difficult niche in gaming which can be off-putting for many, but there’s a lot of good titles for a newcomer to try out.

For example, the Civilization series is an excellent strategy game for getting started. Here you will find many of the standard mechanics that appear in other strategy games. For instance, you will build cities, develop technology, forge alliances with other nations to create powerful armies for fighting against your foes (or to fight alongside them). Explore new territory based on map tiles which may contain resources or monsters; etc.

In this article, you will find some of the best strategy games to play, each with a short summary of how they are unique.

Our selection of the best 4x Games of all time

Strategy gamers, never fear! I’ve got the best 4x games of all time right here 😉

  • Real-time: Stellaris, Distant Worlds: Universe and Sins of a Solar Empire
  • Turn-based (TBS): Civilization 5, Civilization 6, Endless Legend and Humankind


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Stellaris is a sci-fi 4X game that has a lot of features and strategic scale for game longevity. It blends Paradox’s Grand Strategy with the best elements of 4X games to create a grand strategy game that is easy to play and best described as an RTS (real-time strategy) type of gameplay (learn more about rts vs tbs). In a science-fiction scenario, you choose an intergalactic race or create your own, beginning with a solar system named after you in your empire’s name. The ‘ethos scale’ can determine what kind of empire you want to establish – will it be collectivist, militarist hivemind? Maybe you can create a new empire. You could make people famous and let them have a lot of influence.

There are some good parts to the game such as its diplomacy system. And when you play something really big might happen in the story and it has a wide range of features and strategic scale for longevity.

Stellaris is best played with multiple people online or on your own time by yourself, it provides a wide range of features and strategic depth for longevity in gameplay that makes it an excellent choice for 4x gamers looking to find their next favorite game.

Distant Worlds: Universe

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Distant Worlds: Universe is a turn-based 4X strategy game. In the distant future, Humanity has been able to colonize a region of space around Earth called New Terra. The player takes on the role of a newly appointed ruler who must explore and exploit their new surroundings in order to establish a new colony while fending off hostile alien forces, exploration of which will require both firepower and diplomacy.

In distant worlds, the player can forge alliances with other factions in the region, or work against them by means of a proxy war. After establishing their colony, the player must manage it by allocating resources from their surrounding territories, thus generating wealth for further exploration and conquest.

The ultimate goal is to dominate your opponents by connecting your star systems with a vast network of advanced space highways.

Distant Worlds 2 is due to be released in 2021

Distant Worlds 2 is a space strategy game that has a new 64-bit engine, 3D graphics, and an improved interface to start an epic new series with Distant Worlds 2. This game will have all of the features that were loved in the predecessors including deep strategic gameplay with plenty of default empires to choose from. The interface has also been revamped so now it’s easier to navigate through your empire. As always there are advanced customization options that will allow you to play just the way you want!

Sins of a Solar Empire

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Sins of a Solar Empire is a real-time strategy game that features epic 3D battles. It was released in 2008 and the game really stands out from other games in the genre. It also incorporates aspects such as trade and diplomacy which give it great depth and complexity. This is not a game for casual gamers, but gamers who want to invest significant time in this title will be richly rewarded.

Please be advised that this game is a highly complex and challenging game. The complexity of the title means that it should be played by strategy gamers who are willing to invest significant time into the game. However, even though the game is deep and complex, players will love that there is also room for negotiations and trade. This will give these players more control over their empire than they would have in most games of this genre.

The game has excellent ratings, making it one of the most highly rated games in its category. This means that gamers who are serious about strategy titles should give Sins Of A Solar Empire a try!

Civilization 5

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The Civilization series of games has been around for 20 years and as such, it is considered as one of the flagship franchises for strategy gaming. Civilization 5 is a historical simulation of sorts and an evolution of the gameplay introduced in past games. One of the main changes is the introduction of a single-player option which allows people to play solo and control all aspects of their society. There is also a multiplayer option that includes both traditional and ranked matches.

Even though Civilization 6 is already available, Civilization 5 is still considered a good entry point for those who are new to the series. This is because it simplifies some of the features from previous games and includes several tutorials that make gameplay easier on newcomers.

Civilization 6

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The civilization game is one of the most popular tactics games since its release in 1991. From the first released up to now, it has gathered a large fan base and is considered one of the more influential games.

This game is great. It is one of the best in the Civ series because of all the changes that have been made. Things have been improved to make it more realistic and fun to play.

One of the improvements was to make the cities more realistic. This might include having more homes, farms, or even population growth rates that are like those in real life.

Another major change was done on the religious system which includes things like religion spread rate and religious pressure levels. This makes it easier for players to understand the game and connect with their civilizations.

One change I like is how AI leaders are more willing to form alliances before declaring war and not demanding any gold from you until they are already at war with you. When the AI leader asks for peace, they will give some gold too.

Pros of Civilization 6

Some of the pros of Civilization 6 are that it has a lot more to do than in previous Civ. There are more options for what you want to do in this game. For instance, before there wasn’t much difference between various cultures in the game, but now there is so you don’t have to play the same game over and over again.

Another pro of this game is how realistic it can be made. You can set up different cities with different features to make the game feel like real life.

There are also a lot of new things that have been added so it doesn’t seem old and worn out like before

Cons of Civilization 6

Some people have complained that there is not much differentiation when it comes to different cultures. Finally, some people don’t like how long it takes to start up the game.

It’s the newest game in the series so it feels too similar to previous versions. A lot of people are having an issue with this because they are expecting a new experience that is something that has never been done before.

Endless Legend

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Endless Legend is a tactical strategy game set in the world of Auriga. The player travels through the randomly generated map using various methods to reach their destination which may be to raid an enemy village, seek out powerful artifacts, or confront the Lords of the land.

It introduces some new features with respect to tactical gameplay, allowing players to use ambushes, deploy counter-spies and use heroes as generals for armies. Civilization games are characterized by being turn-based and having an army of units that attack each other until one side has won. Players kill opposing armies or capture their towns by forcing enemy units off the battlefield until they have no more left.

Endless Legend is very similar with its base gameplay but has added elements that make it unique. A good reason to play Endless Legend is the fact that it has a very good tutorial to allow players of all levels.

Endless Legend also includes unique elements such as ambushes, counterspies, and generals which add new dimensions in terms of tactical gameplay not found in other games on the market today.

One final reason for playing Endless Legend is that it requires some time investment before becoming fun and engaging. The more one plays the better they will become at mastering this title’s complex systems and features – leading to an overall enjoyable experience!


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Humankind is a strategy-based indie game. It’s based on real-world history and has an educational aspect to it. Players are able to make choices in the game and see how these choices affect the future of humankind (hence the name). There are three ways that you can play: solitaire, cooperative, and competitive.

Some people say humankind has the potential to dethrone the Civilization series because of its uniqueness.

Humankind has many similarities to other popular games like Civilization VI, but its unique gameplay elements and replayability make it special. It’s a relatively new game in the 4X strategy genre that features a lot of different concepts that give it more replayability than what you might have experienced in Civ.

  • Leader: While Civ allows the player to choose from a list of historical leaders, Humankind’s customization process blends together a character creation process while letting you select from 10 different archetypes and giving you up to 2 strengths.
  • Culture: Humankind allows players to change up their culture type every era in the game. Players are able to choose from a list of different types of cultures, including Indo-European, Arab, and Oceanian.
  • Tactical combat: The gameplay of Civ and Humankind is different in a lot of ways. In Civ, you have to accumulate resources, build an army, and upgrade cities. Meanwhile, in Humankind you have to take out a defender with three turns or capture a flag that they must protect. The battle is turn-based and will generally take out most or all of one side’s forces.

Endless Space

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Endless Space is a turn-based 4X strategy game that offers huge, procedurally generated galaxies to explore. The player needs to make decisions about the development of their civilization and how it interacts with other “races”.

The best reason to pick up Endless Space is for its stellar gameplay. While it doesn’t have a strong narrative, the sheer amount of depth and variation that can be created by mixing and matching different space races makes this an incredibly addictive experience that will keep you playing long after your first playthrough.

Endless Space was received very well on PC with critics praising the control scheme, presentation, and depth of gameplay.

Shadow Empire

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Shadow Empire is a turn-based 4x strategy game that takes place in the Dark Matter Galaxy, where players will discover new worlds and colonize them. Players can also take control of one of the 5 factions that are present in the game and challenge others for galactic conquest.

This game stands out because it offers an immersive experience to the players, with many customization options and multiple game modes. It also presents a very different art style compared to other strategy games of this type on the market today.

Talking about the strategic layer of the game, players can choose between a single-player campaign or multiplayer battles.

In terms of gameplay, Shadow Empire is divided into two layers: strategic and galactic mode. During both modes -which are connected to each other- players will explore new worlds on their space ships while colonizing them in order to expand their empire. They’ll also be able to take control of the planet by using all different kinds of technologies.

Master of Orion

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Master of Orion has been hailed as one of the best 3D strategy games of all time, and for good reason. Players chosen will play as a space-faring race, and they can explore or conquer opponents across an interstellar map by interacting with opponents through diplomacy or violence.

The player will have to control resources, design ships, places colonies on planets, explore galaxies and defend against opponents. One of the most distinctive features of the game is the deep customization options it provides for each race.

For the strategic side of the game, there is a robust technology tree in which players will be able to design their own ships and develop new weapons based on research. The combat Units in the game are designed to look like an actual fleet of ships, and each race has a unique design.

Frequently Asked Questions About best 4x Games

What is the best 4X space strategy game?

In my opinion the best 4x space strategy game is Stellaris. It has unique mechanics that make it stand out from other games in this genre. Another reason why I think Stellaris is one of the best space strategy games ever made is because of its beautiful graphics.

I often see the question “Is Stellaris a 4X game?” on websites like Reddit and Quora. The answer is yes, Stellaris is a classic example of the many great games in the genre.

Another good question is: “Is Stellaris 4X or grand strategy?” The answer to this question is both. Stellaris has elements of grand strategy and real-time tactical combat. So what are the characteristics of grand strategy?

Grand strategy is a subgenre of strategy video games characterized by overall military or geopolitical goals, the means to achieve those goals and the ultimate end of domination over others.

In Stellaris the developers have implemented the following features of a grand strategy video game:

  • The ability to explore and colonize new planets.
  • There are no borders on a map, just unexplored areas that can be explored by players or AI opponents.
  • Alliances with other civilizations allow you to trade resources and share technology research among different empires.

If you ask me “Is Stellaris the best space game?” I would answer “Yes!” because of its unique features and gorgeous graphics.

The world events and the diplomacy are also very fun, and the game is definitely not boring. If you are looking for great space strategy games, be sure to check out Stellaris!

What 4X game should I start with?

One of the best 4x games available today is Sid Meier’s Civilization 6. Packed with hours upon hours of gameplay, Civilization 6 allows players to set out on their own personalized campaign, embarking on quests and establishing trade networks with other civilizations. The game also includes various ways for players to compete against one another in head-to-head online play or cooperative scenarios.

It is good for beginners because of the variety of different civilizations available, giving them the chance to experiment with unique play styles and make new decisions every time they start a campaign.

There are many other games out there that can be played like Civilization; some examples include Endless Legend (which is similar in concept but has more fantasy elements), Galactic Civilizations III (an older game made by one of the genre’s greats), or Alpha Centauri which was created by Sid Meier himself years before Civ VI came out!

What is 4X gaming?

In four-X strategy games, players are encouraged to explore the world and uncover new technologies. They are also encouraged to expand their territory by building cities and possibly new empires. Exploiting resources is a key part of the game, where players produce goods and try to make them more valuable for export or trade. Players can also exterminate other players or computer-controlled enemies.

What is a 4X mobile game? And 4X games android?

4X mobile games are not only for PC or Mac. You can also play them on your smartphone or tablet devices!

A great thing about a mobile version of a game is that it usually has much less requirements than its PC counterpart, especially if we are talking about an older title from the 90’s.

Star Ruler 2 is another fantastic 4X game in the sci-fi series. Its flexibility in terms of ship design stands out, as does its huge and unrivaled scale, especially in tactical combat.

Other great choices for 4X games are: Star Traders RPG, Star Traders 4X Empires, and Civilization VI

Is AOE a 4X game?

No. AOE is not a game like the Civilization series, in that it does not share many of its core mechanics (eXplore, eXpand, etc). Basically, Age of Empires (AoE) is a real-time strategy video game based on history. But there are some ways to think about how you can be developing your empire at any given time during the game.

Is EU4 a 4X game?

This is a good question, but it isn’t really one I can easily answer. If you think of Civilization as the archetypal “traditional” example of the genre then there are several parts that makeup what we’ll call your basic Turn-Based Strategy games (TBS). The biggest things are empire management, map exploration and building, and tactical battles. Europa Universalis IV (EUIV) definitely has all three of these things, but the way you interact with them is so radically different than any other TBS game I can think of that it’s difficult to call this an example of anything.

Let me explain: in most games, what you see on the map represents your territory or spheres of influence. The map is static and the only thing that changes about it are things you choose to explore (and how much of a risk you’re willing to take). In EUIV, on the other hand, even terrain is malleable: there’s very little in this game that can’t be changed by some event or decision – maybe not easily, maybe not quickly, but it can definitely be done. And because of that, the map is always changing and nothing on it really means anything until you explore and claim it for yourself (if ever).

The second thing we’ll look at are tactical battles: these generally take place when armies meet on a battlefield to duke it out in a series of rounds. In a traditional TBS, your goal is to have better strategy and tactics than whatever you’re fighting so that you can come out on top with the least amount of casualties possible. In EUIV, it’s more about pressing your numerical advantage: if you’ve got ten soldiers for everyone they have then there isn’t much they can do to stop you. The most important thing in these situations is positioning your troops well with flanking, rear attacks, and pincer movements; the player’s role here is not so much tactician as it is general.

Finally, there are empire management decisions: this includes things like building improvements that give small bonuses or creating trade goods for money. In other games, these are things that you can choose to do or not depending on your need at the time; in EUIV it’s all about money and production capacity no matter what. If you don’t have enough of either then nothing else matters because you’re simply unable to field a large enough army to fight off attackers (and there will always be attackers). It’s an interesting way of looking at things, but it definitely takes some getting used to for people who are accustomed to more traditional TBS games.

So is EUIV a “traditional” TBS game? If you mean the Civilization series then I’d say no without hesitation.