[Top 15] Games Like XCOM 2 (Games Better Than XCOM 2 In Their Own Way)

XCOM 2 is on top of the mountain, but it isn't the only game in town

XCOM 2 is one of the best games to ever come out of the last decade. Released back in 2016, this turn-based strategy masterpiece has suckered countless gamers into a dystopian world where aliens rule over humanity in a manner that could make even the world of George Orwell’s 1984 seem tame in comparison.

However, no matter how amazing a game is, you could only squeeze so many hours of playthrough before even the most dedicated gamer starts finding it stale. This holds especially true for a game that’s starting to show its age like XCOM 2. But there’s no need to worry folks, we’re here to solve that problem by listing 15 other turn-based strategy games you could play if you loved XCOM 2.


15. Triangle Strategy (Year Released: Nintendo Switch, PC - 2022)

Triangle Strategy trailer

Triangle Strategy is a Japanese turn-based strategy game set in a medieval fantasy world where 3 countries are in conflict over the precious commodity of salt. You take the role of Serenoa, heir to house Wolffort, and loyal subject of the Kingdom of Glenbrook, one of the three warring nations in the continent of Norzelia where the game’s story takes place. 

The game’s mechanics doesn’t deviate much from any other Japanese turn-based strategy game, what it does better over its predecessors though is its deep emphasis on the large variety of morality-based plot decisions you can make in game as the story progresses, a mechanic that deeply affects the entirety of your playthrough, from the characters you get to recruit, to the stages you get to play, and the eventual ending you get. 

Oh, and you don’t make these choices summarily—your main story companions vote on crucial story decisions your party gets to make, and each member comes with their own specific set of convictions and agency. If you want them to go along with the decision you have in mind, you actually need to convince them through several dialogue interactions during the game’s voting stages. Pretty sweet twist on a classic mechanic, right?

Choose this game if you like:

  • Multiple story choices
  • Pixel-art anime graphics
  • A mature story about war and politics

 That’s some serious firepower you’ve got there, mates!


14. Wasteland 3 (Year Released: PC, Xbox One, PS4, Linux, macOS - 2020)

Wasteland 3 trailer

Set in an alternate timeline where the United States and the Soviet Union fought a nuclear war after an already cataclysmic impact-event occurred, Wasteland 3 is a role-playing game with a turn-based combat system that tells the story of the last two surviving members of Team November, a paramilitary unit that operates under the banner of the Desert Rangers. Their primary mission is to safeguard the survivors of the game’s post-apocalyptic world, and help rebuild human civilization. 

We follow Team November throughout the game in Colorado as they try to rebuild their unit after the decimation it suffered due to the events of the previous game. An added complication to their plight is the tensions between two of the most powerful local factions, whose actions are threatening to throw an already teetering Colorado over the edge towards chaos.

Choose this game if you like:

  • The Fallout series
  • Riddling asshole NPCs with bullets (seriously, most NPCs in this game is at least some degree of an ass)
  • Recruiting cute, vicious animals to fight with you

Always bring a flamethrower to a gunfight!


13. Phoenix Point (Year Released: PC, macOS – 2019 / PS4, Xbox One – 2021)

Phoenix Point Trailer

Phoenix Point is the intended spiritual successor to the 1990s X-COM series by X-COM’s original creator, Julian Gollop. Same as its predecessor, the game puts you in the shoes of the leader of a ragtag organization bent on defending what’s left of humankind from the dangers of an Earth totally transformed by the spread of an extraterrestrial virus. 

Its atmosphere and overall feel is a stark contrast to Sid Meier’s modern take on the XCOM series, as it taps more into the darker, eldritch horror elements of the original games, rather than the more pulpy, colorful atmosphere of the reboot series.

Its most noteworthy gameplay mechanic however, is the procedurally generated enemies’ ability to randomly evolve from several different combinations of available body-parts as the game progresses, resulting in truly unique and grotesque eldritch enemies each playthrough.

Choose this game if you like:

  • Lovecraftian horror stories
  • Something closer to the original X-COM gaming experience
  • Unique, procedurally generated, evolving enemies


Mama crab monster is here to backup her young!


12. Troubleshooter: Abandoned Children (Year Released: PC – April 23, 2020)

Troubleshooter: Abandoned Children trailer

Troubleshooter: Abandoned Children is set in an anime-inspired modern-day world where super-powered people and monsters are openly running around among the general population. 

The story is about a group of powered freelance paramilitary operatives known as Troubleshooters that assists law enforcement authorities fight and curb super-powered criminal gangs, whose criminal activities cause havoc and mayhem on a daily basis.

The gameplay itself is heavily inspired by XCOM at its core, with a little bit of Final Fantasy thrown-in when it comes to character customization. This makes for a rather enjoyable combination of satisfying turn-based strategy gameplay, and robust, JRPG-like character customization that allows you to shape and optimize your characters to your own anime-fan heart’s content.

Choose this game if you like:

  • One Punch Man and My Hero Academia
  • XCOM’s combat system
  • Superhero stories

Another day in the asylum!


11. Marvel's Midnight Suns (Year Released: PC, Xbox Series X/S, PS5 - 2022 / PS4, Xbox One – 2023)

Marvel's Midnight Suns trailer

Just as the name suggests, Marvel’s Midnight Suns is a tactical rpg set in one of Marvel’s infinite number of multiverses. It involves a wide cast of Marvel’s most notable names like Wolverine, Ironman, Professor-X, Doctor Strange, and the Hulk, and tells the tale of a fully-customizable hero known as The Hunter, as they fight alongside Marvel’s greatest figures to prevent their mother, Lilith, from, well, basically destroying the world, like most evil, comic book villains tend to do!

While Midnight Suns’ core gameplay mechanic is pretty much similar to XCOM, the added deck-building element allows for a more dynamic gameplay than most turn-based strategy games. This more unpredictable aspect in combat, coupled by a great physics design that makes you feel how strong and powerful the heroes you control actually are as they move and act in combat, make for a truly enjoyable gaming experience.

Choose this game if you like:


  • Eldritch beings trying to destroy the world
  • Deck-building games
  • Fully customizable character creation


Tale as old as time—Wolverine vs. Sabertooth!


10. Fire Emblem: Three Houses (Year Released: Nintend Switch – 2019)

Fire Emblem: Three Houses trailer

Like its predecessors in the Fire Emblem series, Three Houses is a tactical role-playing game. It takes place in the continent of Fodlan where the three great houses that rule the land are currently at peace. We take control of Byleth, a former mercenary, and current newest teaching professor at the Gareg Mach Monastery’s military officer’s school. 

The game itself plays like the other Fire Emblem games’ signature tactical gameplay, complete with the support system that was first introduced in Mystery of the Emblem. What’s new however, is the calendar system that’s similar to the Persona games, where the characters spend non-combat time each day mostly in class. Depending on the activities and lesson plan you choose, Byleth can improve his students’ skill proficiency. And, yes, favoritism can go a long way—just make sure to choose the house your favored student belongs to later in the game or you’ll end up with a very competent enemy instead of a party-member!

Choose this game if you like:

  • Politically intriguing storylines
  • Gender-swappable main character
  • Persona’s calendar and school system


It’s always the blonde ones…


9. Tactics Ogre: Reborn (Year Released: Nintendo Switch, PS4, PS5, PC – 2022)

Tactics Ogre: Reborn trailer

Tactics Ogre: Reborn is the spruced-up remaster of Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together, a game that came out way back in 1995 on the Super Nintendo. It’s set in Valeria, an archipelago united as a single kingdom. The story takes place in the midst of a civil war between three major ethnic factions, Bacrum-Valeria, Gargastan, and Walsta, and follows Denim, a Walsta resistance member as he and his friends get entangled in a chain of events that, depending on the player’s choices, could either bring peace back into Valeria, or subjugation under a foreign power.

As a remaster of a genre classic, Tactics Ogre: Reborn is your standard tactical rpg in the vein of other classics from the time such as Final Fantasy Tactics. What the remaster offers from the original however is a reworked, higher resolution graphical environment, added visual effects, rebalanced stats, new recruitable characters, larger party sizes, and a new prologue sequence. Overall, it offers an expanded and fresh experience, while keeping to the elements that made the original game great.

Choose this game if you like:

  • Politically-charged medieval stories
  • Challenging tactical games
  • Cute anime characters in grim, tense situations


Bright, shiny spell effect means something big is coming!


8. Final Fantasy Tactics Advance (Year Released: Gameboy Advance – 2003)

Final Fantasy Tactics Advance trailer

Final Fantasy Tactics Advance is one of the earliest video games to ever take a crack at an isekai story, an anime genre that has seen a recent explosion in popularity. The story centers around 3 primary characters: Marche, a newcomer to the town of St. Ivalice and student at the town’s school, Ritz, a strong-willed, outspoken girl, and Mewt, a boy who lost his mother who comes across an ancient tome that becomes the catalyst for the transportation of the town and its denizens into the world of Ivalice, the setting where several games in the Final Fantasy series takes place. The game details Marche’s quest to return St. Ivalice into the real world, while preventing the town and its people from succumbing to the dangers that lurk in their newfound world.

The game is a tactical role-playing game that plays pretty much like its predecessor, Final Fantasy Tactics, with the caveat of having a more streamlined system for the less capable Gameboy Advance platform. You can train each member of your party to take some of the most iconic classes (referred to as jobs colloquially) from the Final Fantasy series, like the dual-wielding Ninja, and the high-flying, armor-clad spear bearer, Dragoon, with some characters able to take storyline-specific jobs unique to them.

Choose this game if you like:

  • The Final Fantasy world
  • Isekai stories
  • Chocobos!

It really isn't that fun getting transported into a video game world…


7. Super Robot Wars 30 (Year Released: PC, PS4, Nintendo Switch – 2021)

Super Robot Wars 30 launch trailer

Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War claims to be the most ambitious crossover event ever—I don’t think that claim could ever hold up to proper scrutiny when the Super Robot Wars series have been churning out ambitious crossovers, with a diverse roster taken from some of the most iconic mecha anime titles like Gundam, Mazinger Z, and Getter Robo, since its 1st iteration back in 1991.

Super Robot Wars 30 is the 48th game in the main-line series of tactical role-playing games. The 30 in the title commemorates the 30th anniversary of the series, and like most games in the series before it, it’s set in a world that fuses all of the important elements that make up each mecha title involved in the game’s current roster. You will get to experience scenarios where a mash-up of characters from different mecha series confront each other in turn-based combat. One minute you get to see Lelouch of Code Geass fame taking out a mecha beast from the Mazinger series in his Shinkiro Knightmare, the next you’ll get to watch Voltes V cleave a Gelgoog from the Gundam UC timeline in half. It’s a novelty in the series that hasn’t gotten old even after 30 years and probably never will.

Choose this game if you like:

  • Mecha anime
  • Ambitious, massive crossovers
  • Ultraman!

The Gespenst is one of the original mecha units in this epic crossover series!


6. The Hand of Merlin (Year Released: PC, PS4, PS5, Nintendo Switch, Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, macOS, Linux – 2021)

The Hand of Merlin Gameplay and Developer Commentary

The Hand of Merlin is a roguelite tactical rpg based on the stories of the Arthurian Legends. In a world plagued by extra-dimensional eldritch horrors, and where most of the Knights of the Roundtable are dead, including Arthur himself, a severely depowered Merlin uses what little magic he has left to enable a small group of heroes to stop these extra-dimensional excursions. 

The game itself plays like your standard grid-based tactical turn-based rpg, but there is a great degree of randomness in The Hand of Merlin due to its roguelite nature. There are no specific sub-plots or stories in each playthrough—just the initial overarching plot of Merlin sending you off to your journey to stop the source of the extra-dimensional attacks. Each playthrough is different--side quests, recruitable characters, and even NPC rulers vary each time. You can easily spend hours completing one playthrough after another in The Hand of Merlin and chances are you’d end up with a completely different experience each time. It’s not just a bang for your buck kind of deal, but also a genuine stroke of gameplay design.

Choose this game if you like:

  • The Arthurian Legends
  • Dynamic and variable stories each playthrough
  • Sword and sorcery fantasy 

Merlin seems to like choosing random people for such an important quest!


5. The Banner Saga (Year Released: PC, OS X, Linux, iOS, Android - 2014 / PS4, Xbox One – 2016 / Nintendo Switch – 2018)

The Banner Saga trailer

The Banner Saga is a tactical rpg game set in a world inspired by Norse mythology. The story tells the plight of two caravan groups from opposite ends of the land both fleeing from the destruction wrought by a long believed to be extinct, war-like ancient race called the Dredge. 

The game is a tactical rpg inspired by the likes of Final Fantasy Tactics, with each playable character having their own distinct classes and abilities. The story’s progression depends on the choices the player makes along the way, which can have heavy repercussions to the overall story’s direction, and world details that carry over as far forward as to the two succeeding games in the series. The real draw of the game however is its beautifully done graphics, which was achieved through traditional animation techniques. The game’s visuals have far more in common with Disney’s old-school animated adaptations of popular fairy tales like Sleeping Beauty and The Little Mermaid than any other video game in existence, making the game a truly unique visual-marvel.

Choose this game if you like:

  • Vikings!
  • Amazing 2D visual animation
  • Tales of transitory survival

Wait, is this a Disney animated movie or a video game?


4. Divinity: Original Sin II (Year Released: PC – 2017 / PS4, Xbox One – 2018 / macOS, Nintendo Switch – 2019 / iPadOS – 2021)

Divinity: Original Sin II Definite Edition Trailer

Divinity: Original Sin II is the award-winning sequel to Larian Studio’s 2014 turn-based role-playing game, Divinity: Original Sin. Set centuries after the events of the 1st game, in the fantasy world of Rivellon, it follows the story of the player-controlled character known as the Godwoken, a being who can tap into the divine energy known as the Source to cast powerful magic. As the story unfolds, the Godwoken uncovers the truth behind the origin of the Seven Gods of Rivellon, and how their past actions and transgressions have shaped the current crisis that is slowly engulfing the land. 

Like its predecessor, Divinity: Original Sin II is a turn-based rpg where you gain experience after every battle, and eventually level-up once you hit the right amount of experience threshold. The battle mechanic is rich and dynamic, with destructible objects, environmental hazards, and elemental combinations playing a key role on how an encounter could turn out, especially on higher difficulty settings. Overall, it holds up to its reputation as one of the best games to ever come out in recent years.

Choose this game if you like:

  • Humor and wit in your fantasy stories
  • Lizard people!
  • A world full of secrets and rich lore

Never underestimate the Red Prince’s ability with the ladies


3. Valkyria Chronicles 4 (Year Released: PS4, Nintendo Switch, PC, Xbox One – 2018)

Valkyria Chronicles 4 trailer

Valkyria Chronicles 4 is the 4th mainline game of the Valkyria Chronicles series. The series is set in Europa, a fictional continent loosely based on Europe around the onset of World War II. The events of Valkyria Chronicles 4 occur concurrently with the events of the 1st game. Its story, however, covers Operation Northern Cross, a massive offensive campaign launched by the Atlantic Federation with the objective of eventually capturing the autocratic East Imperial Alliance’s capital, Schwartzgrad. The main point of view of the game is seen through the exploits of Squad E under the command of Claud Wallace, one of the Atlantic Federation’s participating units in the offensive.

The gameplay of Valkyria Chronicles 4 is practically the same as the 1st game, a turn-based tactical role-playing game with the added twist of switching into the 3rd person perspective during each unit’s respective turn. What’s new to the game is the addition of the Grenadier class—the game’s version of a mortar unit. This new unit allows for a deeper, and a more varied tactical gameplay experience than the previous games--a welcome addition, as the series’ battle system hasn’t really done anything new since the beginning of the series. 

Choose this game if you like:

  • Modern military stories
  • Tanks blowing things up!
  • 3rd person shooters

The thing is, we brought a tank to a gunfight!


2. Front Mission 1st: Remake (Year Released: Nintendo Switch – 2022 / PS4, PS5, PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S – 2023)

FRONT MISSION 1st: Remake - Gameplay Trailer

The Front Mission franchise is one of the pioneers of the mecha-themed military tactical RPGs way back in the 1990s. Front Mission 1st: Remake is both a remake and a port for the PC and other current gen systems of the 1st game. The story takes place on Huffman Island, a fictional Pacific island in the year 2090. The overall plot of the game revolves around the struggle for control of the island between two rival powers, the United States of the New Continent (USN), a unification of North and South American nations, and the Oceania Cooperative Union (OCU), an alliance of the South Asia, South East Asia, and Australian nations. The game’s main protagonist is Royd Clive, a disgraced former OCU captain who rejoins the conflict after being recruited by the mercenary outfit known as the Canyon Crows.

The gameplay itself revolves around mecha units called Wanzers piloted by your party members. These mechs are fully customizable with a wide array of parts that can improve their performance in combat, and weapons ranging from melee implements like war hammers, to ranged ones like shotguns and missile launchers. Your pilots can also learn skills as you progress through the game, ranging from offensive types that amplify your wanzer’s damage output, to defensive types that can enhance your defensive attributes like evasion.

Choose this game if you like:

  • High degree of character customization
  • Sci-fi Military stories
  • Mecha games like Battletech and Armored Core

Vengeance is always a decent enough motivation…


1. Gears Tactics (Year Released: PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S – 2020)

Gears Tactics launch trailer

Gears Tactics is the Gears of War series’ attempt to cash-in on the resurgent turn-based strategy genre during the later half of the 2010s. The game is set in the fictional Earth-like planet of Sera, 1 year after the cataclysmic event known as Emergence Day, an event where a race of subterranean creatures known as the Locust Horde emerged to the surface and launched a campaign to exterminate all humans on Sera. The story follows Sgt. Gabriel Diaz in his mission to assassinate the Locust Horde scientist, Ukkon.

Gears Tactics’ gameplay is pretty much the same as XCOM but with the added caveat of a much more dynamic, gory, and most of the time, downright over the top animation and action sequences. To compare it in music terms, XCOM is pretty much your standard rock, while Gears Tactics is your heavy metal banger. Afterall, I don’t think there’s something more metal than executing an enemy by impaling it with a chainsaw as you bathe yourself in its blood and gore.

Choose this game if you like:

  • Warhammer 40k aesthetics
  • Ample amounts of explosions
  • Stylish and gory execution sequences


Uh, guys, I don’t think a chainsaw to the chest will cut it this time around…

Sometimes mistaken as a sasquatch sprouting random tidbits of lore from Tolkien's legendarium, he's got serious case of ceviche addiction.
Gamer Since: 1991
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: DOTA 2
Top 3 Favorite Games:DOTA 2, XCOM 2, Mount & Blade

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