Technically, if you count actual war as a game of strategy, then strategy games have been around for millennia. Every time you ask yourself, “What do I need to do to gain an advantage over my enemy?” the answer involves some form of strategy or another. The online strategy game boom, however, didn’t start until the late 80s. A modest, but revolutionary little game called Herzog Zwei, released for the Sega Genesis in 1989, kicked off what is now known as the “RTS” or real-time strategy genre. In these games, you manage a civilization and/or army by building military bunkers, training units to fight, and increasing your population. It’s not all about war, though – you still have hard-working villagers to feed. Where else are you going to get all the wood, silver, and gold you need to outfit and compensate an army? Once you’ve built your civilization up enough, it’s time to attack and conquer your enemies!
As much as we love Herzog Zwei and the many RTS titles that followed throughout the 90s and 2000s like the Age of Empires series, Starcraft, and tons of other popular titles, RTS is just a sub-genre. There are plenty of simpler games out there that still allow you to think strategically without having to manage an entire civilization. We made sure to populate this category with the best of both worlds: medieval strategy games and online war strategy games from the RTS perspective as well as some fun zombie strategy games and other types that go “off the rails” a little bit. In a nutshell, if a game requires you to carefully plan out each move so you can eventually dominate the competition, then it counts as a strategy game in our book! Speaking of, let’s take a quick tour of some of the best online strategy games you can enjoy in this category for free.
The strategy genre simply would not be where it is today if it weren’t for war strategy games. There simply is no better opportunity to flex your strategic capabilities than to establish a civilization, build towers and walls to protect yourself, train an army, scout out your enemy, and plan out the perfect attack. Every step in that process requires advanced strategic thinking if you’re to outdo your opponent. Because they’ve played such a large role in creating the entire strategy genre, we’ve made sure to include plenty of WWI and WWII strategy games. If you prefer swords and shields to mortars and missiles, you can even play medieval strategy games for a more classic feel! You can command an army of foot soldiers, a formidable navy, a fleet of terrifying aircraft, or a little bit of everything. Whatever you do, just remember: your enemy is working just as hard as you are. That’s where strategy comes in – you have to learn to do more with less by attacking when and where they least expect it!
Whether it’s a war strategy game or just a more strategic adventure game that requires you to carefully map out each decision you make, we know that online multiplayer is half the fun (if not more) when it comes to this genre and many others. For that reason, we’ve incorporated plenty of awesome opportunities for you to outwit and outmaneuver your opponents with online multiplayer strategy games. Whether you want to challenge a friend of yours to a brutal contest on the battlefield or if you’re just content to knock down online foes one after the other, the multiplayer madness awaits you! Just remember, every foe is different, so even if you have a great strategy going into the game, you may have to adapt it in order to best your enemy. That’s how a true master of strategy operates.
Of course, we simply couldn’t help it. Ever since their initial boom in the early- to mid-20th century, zombies have been pervading deeper and deeper into pop culture. Every couple of decades, they surge in popularity again, and that’s what we’re seeing in strategy games. Zombie strategy games are complicated in a different way than human-versus-human (or human-versus-computer) contests. You’re not exactly dealing with the cleverest of beings, but you do have to use strategic thinking in order to survive because you’re so vastly outnumbered. For example, if you’ve got five bullets, a crow bar, and 9 zombies creeping towards you, it may be time to improvise! That’s just another word for strategizing on the fly, after all. If you love strategy, play these zombie strategy games. If you love zombies, play these zombie strategy games!
One of the greatest things about old and new strategy games alike is that they test so many different abilities. On the one hand, you’ve got to be creative in the way that you solve urgent problems and resourceful in the way that you make a little bit of manpower/resources go a long way. On the other hand, you have to be logical and patient, thinking several moves ahead and predicting what your enemy is going to do next. Finally, you have to be a student of war, meaning that you must master the art of strengthening your defensive and offensive capabilities at the same time. To sharpen all of these attributes separately, we invite you to visit our logic games, good thinking games, and epic war games categories. They’re like miniature training grounds for strategy game players! When you’re ready to lead your hero and/or civilization to victory, then we’ll look for your flag in the strategy games section.