6 Must-Play Games For History Students

Written by smoothie


As a history student, understanding the events of the past can sometimes feel overwhelming. Textbooks and lectures offer a window into bygone eras, but what if there was a way to experience history more dynamically? Enter the world of strategy games. These games not only serve as a fun break from regular studies but also offer an interactive method to understand historical events, figures, and periods. They transform abstract dates and names into tangible experiences, allowing players to step into the shoes of historical leaders and strategists.

Among the myriad resources available to students for learning and relaxation, strategy games stand out. They offer an immersive learning experience that is both educational and entertaining. While the paper writing service PaperWriter can assist in managing more monotonous academic tasks, strategy games provide a unique avenue for deepening historical understanding. Imagine leading a civilization to glory or strategizing in famous historical battles — these experiences are just a game away.

1. Sid Meier’s Civilization VI

Sid Meier’s Civilization VI provides an expansive adventure through various historical periods, enabling players to develop and guide their own civilization from the dawn of the Stone Age right up to the modern Information Age. This game is a masterpiece in showing how societies evolve over time, combining historical accuracy with strategic depth. Players make critical decisions influencing their civilization’s development, from cultural advancements to technological innovations.

Top 5 Features:

  • Dynamic Empires: Shape the growth of your empire across a modular hexagonal map.
  • Eras of Progress: Experience distinct historical periods, each with unique challenges and opportunities.
  • Diverse Leaders: Choose from various historical figures, each with unique abilities and strategies.
  • Complex Diplomacy: Engage in intricate diplomatic relationships and negotiations with other civilizations.
  • Cultural and Scientific Achievements: Focus on multiple paths to victory, including cultural, scientific, and military.

2. Total War: Three Kingdoms 

Set in China’s tumultuous Three Kingdoms period, Total War: Three Kingdoms perfectly blends history with strategy. Players are thrust into a time of legendary warlords and political intrigue, offering an in-depth look into Chinese history and warfare. The game is renowned for its detailed portrayal of this historical period, coupled with its sophisticated battle tactics and statecraft.

Top 5 Features:

  • Detailed Historical Setting: Explore the rich history of the Three Kingdoms era.
  • Deep Tactical Gameplay: Experience large-scale battles that require strategic planning and execution.
  • Intricate Political System: Navigate a complex web of alliances, betrayals, and diplomacy.
  • Legendary Characters: Command historical figures with unique abilities and personalities.
  • Cultural Immersion: Enjoy a game world steeped in Chinese cultural and historical elements.

3. Crusader Kings III

Crusader Kings III offers a unique blend of RPG and strategy set in the Middle Ages. It is one of the great hobbies for students to try in between studies. Players manage a dynasty rather than a country, focusing on family lineage, political alliances, and feudal warfare. It’s an exceptional tool for understanding the intricate social and political structures of medieval times, presenting history through a personal, family-oriented lens.

Top 5 Features:

  • Dynastic Politics: Navigate the complexities of medieval politics and familial relations.
  • Character Development: Each character has distinct traits and life stories, impacting their decisions and interactions.
  • Historical Depth: Engage with historical events from the medieval period.
  • Strategic Marriages: Use marriage as a tool for political alliances and dynastic survival.
  • Religious and Cultural Diversity: Experience the wide array of cultures and religions of the medieval world.

4. Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition

Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition is a timeless classic that allows players to lead one of several civilizations to supremacy. With campaigns based on historical figures and events, it provides an immersive way to experience key moments in history, from the Dark Ages to the Renaissance.

Top 5 Features:

  • Historical Campaigns: Play through historically based campaigns, reliving the adventures of leaders like Joan of Arc.
  • Civilization Diversity: Choose from a wide range of civilizations to play with.
  • Real-Time Strategy: Master the art of real-time strategy and resource management.
  • Multiplayer Battles: Compete against friends or online opponents in epic historical battles.
  • Enhanced Graphics and Audio: Enjoy updated graphics and soundtracks while exploring historical worlds.
Must-Play Games For History Students, person playing

5. Europa Universalis IV

Europa Universalis IV spans the globe, focusing on exploration, trade, warfare, and diplomacy. You can control a nation and guide its development from the Late Middle Ages through the early modern period. This game is perfect for understanding the complexities of global interactions and nation-building.

Top 5 Features:

  • Global Exploration: Discover new lands and navigate the age of exploration.
  • Nation Development: Transform your nation through technical and cultural progress.
  • Complex Diplomacy: Engage in sophisticated diplomatic relations with other nations.
  • Historical Accuracy: Interact with historically accurate events, decisions, and personalities.
  • Economic Systems: Manage the economic aspects of your nation, from trade to taxation.

6. Anno 1800

Anno 1800 combines city-building with exploration and trade, offering players a chance to witness the transformational impact of the Industrial Revolution. It’s an excellent way to understand the societal and technological changes of the 1800s.

Top 5 Features:

  • Industrial Age Setting: Immerse in the atmosphere and challenges of the 19th century.
  • City Building and Management: Develop and manage bustling industrial cities.
  • Trade and Exploration: Explore new lands and establish trade routes.
  • Socioeconomic Dynamics: Experience the social and economic changes of the era.
  • Campaign and Sandbox Modes: Enjoy a narrative-driven campaign or free-play sandbox mode for creative building.

To Sum Up

In the journey of exploring history through these strategy games, students can gain a deeper appreciation for the complexities and nuances of our past. Whether it’s leading a medieval dynasty or navigating the tumultuous waters of World War II, each game offers a unique educational experience. Alongside these interactive learning tools, students also rely on resources like the best essay writing service for history research and writing. These services complement the learning experience by providing support in articulating complex historical ideas and analyses. By combining strategy games with traditional educational resources, students can enjoy a well-rounded and immersive learning experience that brings history to life.