So, you want to know about political games? Political simulations often have the same alluring attraction as war games and strategy games. The average person likes to test their mental prowess to see if they can do better than their real-world counterparts, or perhaps exert some control over a digital space that resembles their own situation as a way of coping with life’s trials.
Either way, there is an addictive quality to them that’s unlike the rush you get from shooters or RPGs, although the escapism is no less real. Whether you’re setting economic and trade policies, standing strong on the international stage, or leading a nation through a war or some other crises, there’s plenty of things to keep an eye on in a genre that attempts to model every facet of what goes into running a nation.
For our list of top political game picks, we’ve more or less focused on government simulation games rather than games that instead try to recreate or push a specific political agenda – there’s plenty of really interesting options in that latter category, such as Papers Please or America’s Army, but they deserve a dedicated piece. That said, we have included one or two exceptions that really stand-out. Enjoy!