Space games let us live out our fantasies of exploring new worlds and meeting alien lifeforms. We get to fly spaceships to different planets and battle hostile enemies. Sometimes we’re the last hope against an enemy invasion and have to fight to save the planet.
We also get to interact with new species and find out about their history and lore. Sometimes we can even play as alien characters and use amazing abilities.
We’ve made a list of the ten best space games you can play now.
Mass Effect 2
Mass Effect has all the ingredients for an epic adventure, including fascinating worlds, a memorable protagonist, and lots of action. Commander Shepard is a gritty, no-compromise leader, who’s never afraid of battle, yet manages to show a thoughtful and sensitive side when dealing with those around him.
As the game progresses, you build real relationships with the crew using dialogue options, and watching the consequences unfolding is satisfying and heartbreaking at times. It all comes together in the team-orientated combat where you have to pick the best crew for each mission.
Dead Space is a Frankenstein monster made from bits and pieces of other games and movies. The concept isn’t original, yet it grabs you and never lets go. The main reason is the creepy immersive atmosphere and feeling of dread. You’re trapped on a failing ship, and to make matters worse, vicious creatures called Necromorphs are hunting you.
The hero, Isaac, has to build guns using blueprints and items he finds on the ship. He also has to unravel the mystery of what’s happening around him and what happened to the crew. The game is made more compelling by twists and turns in the story. Dead Space is a scary experience and one of the finest space horror games out there.
Borderlands 3 is more about running around and shooting everything in sight with a plethora of weaponry. The first two installments were set on the planet of Pandora, but Borderlands 3 lets you fly around space in Sanctuary 3 and travel to different worlds. The spaceship is a mini-city, and all the familiar characters like Mad Moxxi and Marcus are at hand with their irreverent humor and dodgy items for sale.
Gearbox has done a fabulous job of giving each world a different aesthetic. You can go berserk killing creatures in the city of Promethea, explore the swamps of Eden-6, or marvel at the temples on Athena’s. There’s so much action that you won’t notice the paper-thin plot.
Destiny 2 is like a grown-up version of Borderlands 3. There’s less crude humor and fewer guns, but everything else feels more polished. The game switches effortlessly between hard-core first-person shooter to RPG, and all three character classes have something different to offer. The campaign mode is a vast improvement over the original game and adds depth to the overall story.
Destiny 2’s strength is that there’s just so much to do with a campaign, co-op missions, PvP, and more to keep you busy. None of the features feel like a tacked-on afterthought, and they all have something to offer.
Alien Isolation is a slow-burner survival horror game that does an incredible job of emulating the franchise it’s based on. The retro-space vibe is entirely different from most space games with monochrome computer screens, analog phones, and claustrophobic corridors. The story follows Amanda Ripley as she pieces together what happened to her mother, Ellen.
She gets her hands on the Nostromo’s flight recorder and ends up on an abandoned space station. The Xenomorph appears, and things start to fall apart. The game is dripping with atmosphere, and it’s fantastic that you have to survive without many weapons. It’s a cat and mouse game between you and the alien with more than enough scares to keep you on your toes.
The Outer Worlds
The Outer Worlds is yet another first-person shooter where you explore different worlds and meet eccentric characters. The attention to detail is astounding. All the areas have unique color schemes and characteristics, and they are a pleasure to explore. It’s also refreshing to see a game that focuses on quality instead of quantity and doesn’t try to stuff in the biggest maps possible.
The light-hearted tone of The Outer Worlds is infectious, and so are the pulpy action setpieces. All the characters have unique personalities, and the dialogue options range from cringy to hilarious. The Outer Worlds is an action-packed space romp without too much thinking required.
Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
No space game list can be complete without an entry from the Star Wars franchise. The Fallen Order takes place after the prequel trilogy with CaL Kestis trying to evade the imperial forces hunting remnants of the Jedi. He then has to find a MacGuffin called the Holocron to rebuild the Jedi Order.
The plot is generic, but the adventure and action are top-notch. One of the coolest things about the game is that your only weapon is a lightsaber, and you have to build up your force powers from scratch. The combat is based on timing, with blocks and parry crucial to survival. Fallen Order is the best Star Wars game in years and well worth checking out.
The Outer Wilds
It may have a similar-sounding name, but The Outer Wilds isn’t related to The Outer Worlds. It’s different from most games out there. There’s no action or explosions. Instead, you explore the solar system solving mysteries. The plot involves being stuck in a time loop that gets reset every 22-minutes when the sun goes supernova. After 22 minutes, or if you die, you end up back where you started and have to use the knowledge you gained to move further.
The concept is fantastic, and there are lots of puzzles to solve and characters to interact with. Each planet is unique with secrets to uncover, and you feel like a detective trying to figure things out. The Outer Wilds is a quirky game for people who want a slow-pace thinking game.
Everspace lets you live out your dreams of being a space fighter pilot. You get gattling guns, laser beams, and more to take down enemy ships. The looting system isn’t too grindy, and you can continuously upgrade your ships as you fight bigger and stronger baddies.
Everspace doesn’t waste much time with character interactions or dialogue. It’s all about space battles and upgrading your ship. The graphics quality is incredible, and there are always asteroids or planets in the backdrop. Movement and combat are both fluid, so you can easily dodge enemies or fit through tight spaces. Everspace has a huge fun-factor and is very rewarding if you like space battles.
No Man’s Sky
The day-one version of No Man’s Sky is infamously buggy and regarded as an unfinished game that promised more than it could deliver. Thankfully it’s received regular updates over the last few years and is now resembling the game it was supposed to be. The game is based on unlimited space exploration, and players have to mine resources to improve their equipment.
The game’s calling card is the infinite amount of procedurally-generated planets it has. You can go anywhere you like, provided you have the resources and have to deal with hostile environments and interact with alien races. No Man’s Sky has a vast scale, but the exploring can eventually get repetitive and boring.