Top-5 Age of Empires 4 Alternatives: A Deep Dive Into Real-Time Strategy Games

Liam Lee

30 Jun, 2023

Top-5 Age of Empires 4 Alternatives: A Deep Dive Into Real-Time Strategy Games

Real-Time Strategy (RTS) games have always captivated gamers, immersing them in a fully unique gameplay experience that offers them control over their virtual universe. Age of Empires 4 is no exception; it characterizes the genre perfectly and ignites our historical senses. If you have already exhausted the thrill that comes with Age of Empires 4 and you're searching for excellent alternatives, this article was created with you in mind. Discover five exciting games that you can explore, each with its own unique gameplay, storyline, and setting.

1. StarCraft II

StarCraft II logo

Regarded as one of the best RTS games of all time, Starcraft II maintains a larger than life reputation in the gaming world. Developed by Blizzard Entertainment, this game provides players with strong strategic gameplay similar to Age of Empires 4.


StarCraft II allows players to control one of three factions—the human Terrans, the advanced Protoss, or the insectoid Zerg—as they aim to conquer their enemies across multiple maps. Each faction has its own unique set of units, strengths, and weaknesses, allowing for highly strategic gameplay.

Story and Setting

Set in the 26th Century in a distant part of the Milky Way, Starcraft II’s plot explores the galaxy-spanning conflict between the three races. The game includes a single-player campaign mode for each species, offering a fulfilling storyline for players.

2. Civilization VI

Civilization VI game

One game that could satisfy your hunger for historical warfare is Firaxis Games' Civilization VI. While it is a turn-based strategy game unlike Age of Empires 4's real-time gameplay, the themes, gameplay depth, and historical context make it a worthy alternative.


In Civilization VI, players aim to build an empire that will withstand the test of time. The game offers vast possibilities—you can achieve victory through diplomacy, cultural influence, technological innovation, or warfare.

Story and Setting

The setting of Civilization VI spans the entirety of human history, starting from the early days of civilization to the space age. The storyline varies each playthrough as players make different decisions that shape the history of their civilization.

3. Total War: Three Kingdoms

Total-War-Three-Kingdoms game

Creative Assembly's Total War: Three Kingdoms provides a unique blend of turn-based grand strategy and real-time tactical battles that makes it another strong contender for fans of Age of Empires 4.


In this game, players control one of the game’s twelve factions that existed during the Three Kingdoms period of Chinese history. Gameplay revolves around managing the faction’s economy, military, and territories in turn-based strategy mode, while real-time mode happens whenever two armies clash on the battlefield.

Story and Setting

Total War: Three Kingdoms is set in 190CE China, amidst a crumbling Han Dynasty. Factions within the empire aim to take control of China, leading to an era of legendary warfare and conquest.

4. Crusader Kings III

Crusader Kings III game

If you're a fan of Age of Empires' historical context, and are fascinated by scheming nobles and royal bloodlines, then Crusader Kings III might be up your alley. With an emphasis on dynastic politics, this grand strategy game from Paradox Interactive brings a unique flavor to the genre.


In Crusader Kings III, you play as a noble or royal in the middle ages, aiming to secure your dynasty's future. Different from the usual RTS games, it involves managing relationships, arranging marriages, constructing alliances, and even plotting assassinations.

Story and Setting

Set in the medieval era, Crusader Kings III grants a global perspective, covering Europe, the Middle East, and parts of India. The storyline varies as players have the freedom to carve their own path to achieving power.

5. Company of Heroes 2

Company of Heroes 2 game

Company of Heroes 2 is another superb RTS game worth trying. Developed by Relic Entertainment, the same team behind Age of Empires 4, this game offers intense World-War-II-era battles that will keep you engaged for hours.


Company of Heroes 2's gameplay involves building bases, gathering resources, and deploying units to destroy enemy forces. Unlike the usual generic gameplay, it considers the weather element, where severe cold can kill your troops if you're not vigilant.

Story and Setting

Company of Heroes 2 is set during World War II, focusing on the Eastern Front. Its storyline revolves around the Red Army as they strive to repel the invasion from the Axis forces. So there you have it! If you enjoy Age of Empires 4, give these top RTS games a try. Each game provides something unique in terms of gameplay, story, and setting, and can satisfy your desire for complexity, strategic depth, and historical richness.


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