Unforgiving battlegrounds, decimating graphics and storylines worthy of Oscar awards are just the very tips of the iceberg when it comes to the best military war games. Achieving everything except making you draw actual blood, military games are expansive, enthralling and so much sweeter on next-generation platforms.
Whilst some RTS games could technically be classified as war games, today, we are looking at your stereo-typical military war games where tanks are aplenty and death is almost certain. After all, this is the genre that masterfully conveys the horror of war. It would be an injustice to feature Civilization IV (although technically a war game).
Ready to liberate your nation? Let’s get started! 👇
Top 12 Best Military War Games
While we are in no way glorifying the idea of war, there’s just something about armoured vehicles, advanced weaponry, and the sound of guns that gives us this chill and sense of excitement. And on that note, the tactical war games we are featuring below are only those that we personally enjoyed.
While opting for basic FPS games provides a quick fix for your bloodlust upping the ante and living through the terrors of historical wars with titles like Enlisted, War Thunder, and Hell Let Loose is just so much more fulfilling.
Release Date: 25th October 2019 Platforms: PC, PlayStation, and Xbox Developer: Infinity Ward
Before you screw your nose up at us mentioning Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, you cannot deny that Infinity Ward is the master of single-player campaigns. Ranked as the best COD single-player campaign by IGN, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare is without question the best war game when playing solo.
What began as a simple World War shooter back in the day has now transformed into a seriously heart-pounding and finely tuned game with a slew of new features and cinematic campaigns. In Modern Warfare, there’s character building, a realistic storyline and the graphics with the 2019 rebooted version are simple epic.
Join Captain John Price, and his team, as you set to track down a missing shipment full of chemical weapons in this shockingly gripping military game. Forget Warzone, the single-player is where COD really excels. –
Sniper Elite 5
Best Tactical Shooter
Release Date: 25th May 2022 Platforms: PC, Xbox, and PlayStation Developer: Rebellion Developments
With its predecessor, Sniper Elite 4, nominated for the British Academy Video Games Award for multiplayer, Sniper Elite 5 still manages to take things to the next level. It’s a real pleasure to play and comes with an excellent storyline set in 1944 France the truly plays into long-range warfare.
In Sniper Elite 5, you will be thrust into the muddy boots of our favourite marksman, Karl Fairburne, as he uncovers the truth about the Nazi’s Operation Kraken. Sneak into the enemy lines, follow and disrupt enemy operations, disable communications, and fire into the heads of the Nazis before D-Day. It’s all featured here.
However, what makes Sniper Elite 5 one of the best tactical military shooters is the combat system, kill cam and stealth mechanics. It really does have it all.
Ready to snipe, blast, and stab your way across the Atlantic to Wolf Mountain? –
Best Free War Game
Release Date: 15th August 2013 Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5 & Xbox Developers: Gaijin Entertainment
Although it’s the oldest entry on this list, War Thunder still makes the cut as one of the best free war games out there today. War Thunder is a vehicular combat game, meaning you’ll get to pilot aircraft, crush objects in tanks, or navigate the seas in a ship. Plus, with coverage from World War 1 to the modern day, you’ll have plenty of vehicles and scenarios to explore.
The game offers a single-player campaign that lets you participate in historical battles and a co-op mode where you battle alongside friends. On top of that, War Thunder regularly holds events with some outlandish crossovers like battling a giant snail monster or having the Pony Nation from My Little Pony as a playable faction.
So, if you ever feel like mindlessly hopping into a tank and blowing things to smithereens, War Thunder is here for you and it’s totally free to play!
World of Tanks
Best War MMO Game
Release Date: 5th September 2013 Platforms: PC Developers: War Gaming & Day 1 Studios
All-out warfare is arguably the epitome of military war games and Word of Tanks takes this to the next level. As the best MMO war game, World of Tanks is also free to play and comes packed with features.
Don’t let the release date fool you, World of Tanks gets more updates than Fortnite!
As you master the art of controlling vehicles from World War II (and the mid-20th century), you will be quickly defending yourself against competing players around the world. Use your strategy, mettle and might to command over 800 war machines, including the Churchills and T-34s, across dozens of maps.
With over 180 million players and many awards to its name, don’t just take my word for it; World of Tanks epitomises everything you love about military war games.
Company of Heroes 3
Best Military Strategy Game
Release Date: 23rd February 2023 Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5 & Xbox Developers: Relic Entertainment
Another superb single-player military game that will test your strength and thinking skills is Company of Heroes 3. Now, whilst many who are familiar with Relic Entertainment’s coveted war management series will argue that Company of Heroes 2 is actually the better game, this is no longer supported and I expect that COH3 will gradually improve with future updates.
Plot your moves, use your turns wisely and manage your war strategy to perfection on both PC and console in Company Heroes 3. As you take the battle to the Axis, you will feel both powerful and powerless throughout your journey to liberate the Italian Peninsula and enjoy historic battles in Salerno, Anzio and Monte Cassino.
It’s everything that a war chief could want and with a new and improved multiplayer mode, the battle just got that little bit more grandiose.
Best Multiplayer Military War Game
Release Date: 20th November 2018 Platforms: PC, PS4, & Xbox Developers: DICE
With the Battlefield franchise being around as long as it has, you know that DICE can deliver a solid military shooter. Of which, Battlefield V is the cream of the crop in my personal opinion.
Throwing back to World War II, Battlefield V sets itself apart from similar games through its multiple perspectives and an episodic single-player campaign.
But, if you’re familiar with the Battlefield series, then you know that its biggest draw is the grand warfare the ensues on 64-player lobbies. As the best multiplayer military war game, Battlefield V lives up to its name with large-scale skirmishes and plenty of multiplayer modes to choose from. You can squad up with your friends to take on other groups in deathmatches or test your skills in a battle royale setting that puts a slightly different spin on what you would experience with COD Warzone.
Honestly, this game doesn’t really need a description. It’s epic. –
Hell Let Loose
Best Indie Military War Game
Release Date: 6th June 2019 Platforms: PC, PlayStation, and Xbox Developer: Black Matter Pty Ltd
Hell Let Loose is an ideal title for those looking for a large-scale multiplayer shooter game that is set across different battlefields during the World War. From Kursk and the Omaha beach to Remagen and Stalingrad, you’ve got several detailed maps and a variety of environments that are eerily too close to the original. To elevate the gaming experience more, the developers added atmospheric elements that will grip players and transport them directly to the dark times.
Is all of this inside an indie game? You bet kiddo!
Immediately upon embarking on your adventure, you’ll notice that they stripped away the stereotypical elements so that you can focus more on your character and the emergent storytelling. But don’t be fooled into thinking that the game will not keep you on the edge of your seat. Ultimately, your goal here is to capture as many strong points on the map as possible, which means that you need to strategize and coordinate your movements.
Call the shots and put your skills to the test in Hell Let Loose.
Best Xbox Military War Game
Release Date: 2nd March 2021 Platforms: PC, PlayStation, Xbox & GeForce Now Developer: Darkflow Software
While drones and modern missiles may sound like a lot of fun, hearing the pew-pew from old-school battlefields still have that charming appeal. If you are a sucker for all things related to the World War on the Xbox, then Enlisted is yet another game that will satisfy your bloodlust.
Unlike the other titles included in this list, Enlisted offers a free-to-play MMO with a focus on in-game transactions. While you certainly do not need to purchase any additional items, doing so will increase your squad’s chance of winning. And yep, you read that right! Enlisted is focused on camaraderie, so you’ll either be tasked to follow your leaders or be the commander yourself.
There’s no health regeneration, multiple specialities and a grind through the land, sea and air that is tailor-made to squads with good communication.
Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown
Best For Aerial Combat
Release Date: 18th January 2019 Platforms: PlayStation, Xbox, and PC Developers: BNE Entertainment, Project Aces, BANDAI NAMCO Studios
Whenever we think about war games, rifles, throwing grenades, or your team running after a prisoner of war are at the fore. However, the real battle happens in the sky, and Ace Combat 7 is the best aerial war game you will find right now.
Though you may think that Ace Combat 7 is all about flying, it actually takes strategy and refined skills to dodge your enemies and line up that missile lock. For this reason, the game has garnered mixed reviews with some complaints over the difficulty. But warfare isn’t supposed to be fun and games and for that, we tip our hat to you Bandai!
If you’re looking for unique, challenging gameplay, go for Ace Combat 7! –
Sniper Ghost Warrior Contracts 2
Most Difficult Military Game
Release Date: 4th June 2021 Platforms: PS4, PS5, Xbox & Series X Developers: CI Games
If ending fights before your enemies even know they’ve begun is up your alley, then Sniper Ghost Warrior Contracts 2 might be for you. As the sixth entry in the Sniper: Ghost Warrior series, Contracts 2 brings you an overall satisfying blend between stealth, long-range eliminations and complex strategy.
The game is set in a fictional Middle Eastern country called Kuamar and introduces us to series newcomer Raven. Contracts 2 has six missions including DLC, with each one classified as either “classic” or “long-distance”. Classic missions involve stealth, infiltration, some close-quarter combat sequences, and of course, sniping targets. On the other hand, long-distance missions offer exactly that – missions that require you to eliminate targets from a long distance – up to 1,000 meters away.
Though some aspects of the game can definitely use some tweaks, pulling missions off successfully is incredibly satisfying given the complexity of the game. For the sneaky types, set your sights on Sniper Ghost Warrior Contracts 2. –
Best Team War Game
Release Date: 14th December 2015 Platforms: Windows PC Developers: Offworld Industries
Want to test the effectiveness of your group of friends as a squad?
Look no further than the aptly named tactical shooter, Squad. As the best team-based military war game, Squad takes place in the modern day where you will witness events that are based on actual incidents. Pitting two teams made up of several different squads against each other, each squad can have up to nine players with soldier classes and roles.
Your role on the squad will determine your equipment and specialization in battle. For example, you can focus on taking out enemy vehicles as an Anti-Tank or tend to the injured as a Medic. Roles are chosen at the beginning of each match, but players may switch every time they are eliminated making this game highly tactical.
For the gamers who think they are actually Captain Price, go for Squad.
Hearts of Iron IV
Best War Simulation Game
Release Date: 6 June 2016 Platforms: PC Developers: Windows PC, Linux & Mac
When all of that shrapnel has gotten to your head, there’s always the more peaceful approach to warfare that you will find in Hearts of Iron IV. Well, it’s not particularly peaceful but you at least won’t be dodging physical grenades!
For PC gamers, Hearts of Iron IV presents as the best military simulation game that doesn’t involve reloading your weapons. As you command your war machine, Hearts of Iron IV will test your metal in diplomacy, managing industries and setting up defences to protect your valuables.
It’s grand strategy warfare at its finest; offering historical knowledge as well as alternative histories of World War II. For the gamer who loves to play real-time strategy games, Hearts of Iron IV is almost guaranteed to be the little treat that you may have never heard about.
The Final Word
Phew! That was quite an exhaustive list, right? I can hear the cries already.
Seeing the possibilities of military games, even the U.S. military released a unique recruitment tool in the form of a war game known as America’s Army. While the game officially went dark in May this year, it continues to have several players on Steam where it packs several situations and maps that insanely reflect the real deal. In fact, the developers consulted with veterans to ensure that every combat scenario would scream realism.
And so, while not every game on this list is as realistic as that, I hope that have discovered your next go-to military war game. If you have other recommendations, drop them in the comments below! While there are tons of upcoming military games, you can start with these as a warm-up and rest assured knowing that we’ll update the list if there are any new titles worth mentioning.
If you are a regular reader here, you know that we usually cover games for major platforms. However, we were quite devastated that we couldn’t find many games for Switch. In fact, the only three war titles worth playing on Switch are:
Sniper Elite 4 (2017)
Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus (2017)
Red Wings (2020)
Now that’s one thing that Switch should really look into!
Ready to see your platoon live through the wars? Get your aim right and revise history with the games we featured above. Let us know which of these you are excited to try out and those that you feel deserve a spot right here.
Enjoyed this post? Don’t miss out on our other roundups and reviews! Here’s a list of other posts you might be interested in:
Content Disclaimer: This roundup of the best games for warfare has been independently written. GamePro has not been commissioned by any games featured on this list, nor have we received any royalties for this article. This includes financial reimbursement, free advertising or free retail copies of the games listed.
Should you click on any link to Amazon and make a purchase, we may receive a small commission. But that’s just how we keep this website alive! Feel free to hit us up in the comments with any questions you have and we’ll hit you back!
Gamezeen is a Zeen theme demo site. Zeen is a next generation WordPress theme. It’s powerful, beautifully designed and comes with everything you need to engage your visitors and increase conversions.