Top 18 Best Free Strategy Games of All Times for PC You Must Try

Why you must waste your money on scrappy games when you can have access to great games which are free-to-play. Our list of best free strategy games for PC will surely satisfy you. You can find links to download these free games at the end of this post.

Links to download are placed at the end of this post.

1. Dota 2

dota 2 gameplay
Dota 2 gameplay. Image by Sergey Galyonkin via Flickr, released under Creative Commons license.
  • Platforms: PC, Linux, OS X
  • Game genre: Multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA)
  • Game modes: Single player, multiplayer

The franchise originates from a mod of Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos under the name “Defense of the Ancients” or Dota for short. But the game has quickly surpassed its predecessor in terms of popularity. On top of that, Dota has set a new set of standards for the new MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena) games. Dota 2 is an upgrade of the original version with lots of updates on gameplay and graphics.

There will be two teams competing with each other in certain maps. Each team consists of five players that play in different roles, such as supporter, tanker, fighter, archer, etc. Depending on the team composition of your opponents, you and your teammates can select a counteractive formation in order to gain the upper hand during the game.

Players can also upgrade their in-game characters by earning experiences to level up their stats. Along with that, you can purchase different items to power up your character.

2. Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft

Hearthstone gameplay
Hearthstone gameplay. Image by mrwynd via Flickr, released under Creative Commons License
  • Platforms: Android, PC, Mac, iOS
  • Game genre: Collectible card game
  • Game modes: Single player, multiplayer

The game is an online free-to-play version of Magic the Gathering from Blizzard. Unlike other card games where you’ll have to spend countless hours studying the gameplay, Hearthstone takes little time for you to familiarize with. On top of that, it features a simple set of rules and a casual visual approach for beginners.

But the game isn’t that easy to play, especially when you’re up against an opponent who knows how to play his cards right. The exciting and challenging experiences make this game quite addictive.

3. Total War Arena

total war arena gameplay free on pc
Total War Arena gameplay
  • Platform: PC
  • Game genres: Real-time tactics, MMO
  • Game mode: Multiplayer

If you’re already familiar with the franchise and find much joy playing it, then Total War Arena would be a perfect game in your free time. It’s a team-based online strategy game that features two sides competing in an ancient battlefield. You will be a commander who leads your army to victory. There are many factions for you to choose from, such as Romans, Greeks, Barbarians, and more to come in the future.

The massive battle system allows up to 10-vs-10 battle, so you and your friends can all take part in the fighting. There are lots of opportunities to develop different tactics depending on the battlefields and the opponent’s army. Plus, it is also a good chance for you to study a little about human ancient history.

4. League of Legends

league of legends gameplay best free strategy game for pc
League of Legends gameplay. Image by downloadsource.fr via Flickr, released under Creative Commons License.
  • Platforms: PC, macOS
  • Game genre: MOBA
  • Game mode: Multiplayer

It is one of the best free strategy games for PC in the world with millions of players from different countries. There are tournaments being held all over the world each year with many pro teams participating in.

League of Legends comes with a similar gaming mechanism to Dota but with a slightly different gameplay. It is considered easy to play even for beginners with detailed guides on each character, item builds, and other factors. The pace of the game is also much quicker compared to Dota with minor conflicts even in the very beginning. The longer you’re in the more combats you’ll likely to encounter.

With a diverse cast of champions, fantastic maps, and auto-matching systems, it’s not surprising why League of Legends has been so successful.

5. 0 A.D.

Screenshot of the Gaul Civilization in 0 A.D.
Screenshot of the Gaul Civilization in 0 A.D. By 0 A.D. Team, CC BY-SA 3.0
  • Platforms: Linux, PC, Mac
  • Game genre: Real-time strategy
  • Game modes: Single player, multiplayer

If you are in love with the old real-time strategy (RTS) titles like StarCraft and Age of Empires, then 0 A.D would be a perfect game for you with good graphics and gameplay. The best thing is that the game is open-sourced, so it is completely free to play.

You’ll play as ancient empires by building your base and destroy others or playing the campaigns. The best part is that you can play with your friends using local networks or online connections. Although it’s free, 0 A.D. is still under development. So if you love the game, don’t hesitate to deliver a small donation to the developers.

6. World of Tanks

World of Tanks gameplay.
World of Tanks gameplay. Image by BagoGames via Flickr, released under Creative Commons License.
  • Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PC
  • Game genres: Shooter, MMO
  • Game mode: Multiplayer

World of Tanks’s team-based massively multiplayer online (MMO) games where you can participate in modern battlefields with players from all over the world. There is a large collection of different war machines that you can drive into battles and a professional upgrade system for your tanks.

world of tanks gameplay free game pc
World of Tanks gameplay

While you will only play as one tank, the battlefield is quite large and the enemies are many, so you should co-operate with teammates and come up with suitable strategies to win the battle.

Despite the fact that the game is free-to-play, you will still likely to make some minor in-game purchase in order to get the strongest upgrades for your war machines.

7. Total War Battles: Kingdom

Total War Battles: Kingdom gameplay.
Total War Battles: Kingdom gameplay. Image by Total War Battles Kingdom Fandom Wiki.
  • Platforms: PC, Mac, Android, iOS
  • Game genre: Strategy
  • Game modes: Single player, multiplayer

This cross-platform Total War Battles game allows you to play on different gaming devices. The game is completely free and available on Google Play, App Store, and Steam. So you can manage your empire any time anywhere, even without your PC.

Like other building-based strategy games, you will start by creating your empire from scratch. Explore the land, conquer others to build a prosperous and powerful kingdom. You can also interact with other players no matter what platform you’re playing. On top of that, you can experience the exciting lifelike battles that feature massive armies with different units.

8. Paladins

Paladins gameplay video trailer:

  • Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, Mac
  • Game genre: Shooter
  • Game mode: Multiplayer

Paladins features a different upgrade system based on collectible cards that allow you to upgrade the character’s abilities.

paladins on pc
Paladins gameplay on PC

Another major difference is that Paladins is technically completely free-to-play. You can unlock almost anything throughout the game. The only asset that might cost money is cosmetic items, which aren’t really helping when you’re playing (they just change your character looks). Apart from that, you can earn everything else from completing quests and missions.

9. Imperia Online

imperia online gameplay
Imperia Online gameplay
  • Platforms: PC, Android, Web browser, Windows Phone, SteamOS, iOS
  • Game genre: Medieval strategy game
  • Game mode: Massively multiplayer online real-time strategy game (MMORTS)

Imperia Online is a two-dimensional game where you build your empire from scratch. You have to set up wood workshops and iron foundries and allocate your population accordingly. 

You start with a stark and desolate area. Gradually you build up everything that a modern city has. Later you also get to build your army. That helps you raid surrounding areas for resources. 

The next stage is when you enter into alliances with neighboring cities for mutual benefits. This could also lead to trade relations. One of the best free strategy games PC, it will seamlessly allow you to compete with players around the world. It requires you many different skills to reach the final victory.

10. Elvenar

Elvenar gameplay free on PC
Elvenar gameplay
  • Platforms: Android, Web browser, iOS
  • Game genre: Massively Multiplayer Online (MMO), Massively Multiplayer, Role-Playing, Fantasy
  • Game mode: Player vs. Environment (PvE)

Elvenar is a fantasy city built by you, which is populated by elves. It starts as barren land, but as you add structures, it metamorphoses into a bustling city. 

You can build Universities where research is carried out. That research will allow you to use more efficient tools and weapons. Like any modern economy, you can also trade with other cities. 

You can also build structures that help in spreading culture and entertainment. When you start to play for the first time, a helpful guide will be available. He will take you through your paces.

11. The Company Of Myself

The company of myself strategy game free on PC
The Company of Myself gameplay
  • Platforms: Android, Web browser, iOS
  • Game genre: Adventure, Puzzle and Skill, Platformer
  • Game mode: Single Player

The protagonist of this game is Jack, who is simply not able to socialize. That is the reason for the name of this game. You are to help Jack navigate multiple levels as he tells you more and more about himself. You will love the bright colors of this game. 

What makes The Company Of Myself one of the best free strategy games PC is that you get slowly drawn to Jack. Instead of feeling angry about his whining, you end up feeling one with him. You will need to have Flash Player installed on your PC to be able to play this game.

12. Big Farm

big farm screenplay
Big Farm
  • Platforms: Android, Web browser, iOS
  • Game genre: Farm
  • Game mode: Browser-based casual simulation MMO

Although this game presents you with a vast farm to start with, it is not in excellent shape. It was left to you by a relative who sadly didn’t take great care of it. 

So you need to start planting different types of crops and allocate your farmhands to their respective areas. The people you hire will also need places to stay. 

13. Agar.io

agar.io
  • Platforms: Android, Web browser, iOS
  • Game genre: Action
  • Game mode: Multiplayer

The incredible simplicity of this game belies the immense popularity it has attained. You play as a circle surrounded by smaller and bigger circles. 

The only strategy you need to have in the Agar.io – known to be out of the best free strategy games PC is to grow bigger by eating up the circles around you. At the same time, you need to protect yourself from other circles wanting to eat you. Instead of a dog-eat-dog world, this is a dot-eat-dot world.

14. Transformice

Tranformice gameplay
Transformice gameplay
  • Platforms: Android, Microsoft Windows, Linux, macOS
  • Game genre: Platform game
  • Game mode: Multiplayer

This game will make you laugh and also teach you the power of collaboration.  

The characters of this game are mice. They are looking to grab pieces of cheese. The mice need to line up smartly. This prevents them from plummeting to their deaths. The chief protagonist here is the shaman mouse. 

There are a lot of levels to cross, and each level has increasing complexities. Note that the servers which allow you to play this game free online are in Europe and the USA only.

15. Galaxy Warfare

galaxy warfare
Galaxy Warfare
  • Platforms: Android, Web browser, iOS
  • Game genre: 2D Sci-Fi, Sci-Fi, Strategy
  • Game mode: Multiplayer, MMO

When you first sign up for Galaxy Warfare, well-loved in the most current list of the best free strategy games PC, you are given a choice of three factions, and you need to join one of them. That screen will also allow you to chat with other online players. So you can use the chat to understand what each faction is about. 

The controls might be a little challenging to master at first. You have the vast frontiers of space to explore and gather resources. At the same time, you need to be careful of enemy attacks.

16. Batheo

batheo gameplay
Batheo gameplay
  • Platforms: Android, Web browser, iOS
  • Game genre: Greek mythology strategy
  • Game mode: MMORTS

You will be transported to ancient Greece with this browser game. You own a city, and you need to progress it to secure your place among the other gamers. 

The player can choose any one of eight possible formations. You can also raise armies and your warrior heroes. The levels are referred to as Prestige. The higher your Prestige, the more powerful your heroes become. 

Apart from the heroes, you can also raise and equip your armies. You have the option of using cavalry as well. The weapons you use are graded by color to tell you their comparative quality.

17. Cardhunter

cardhunter gameplay
Cardhunter gameplay
  • Platforms: Web browser, PC, OS X
  • Game genre: Tactical collectible card game (CCG), Tabletop game hybrid
  • Game mode: Single-player, Multiplayer

Another game on this list of the best free strategy games PC should be Cardhunter. It takes away from wars and kingdoms and gives you the thrill of trading cards. You need to assemble a team that will help you reach your goals. 

You will have to get your loot from abandoned dungeons to get your rewards. The unique abilities of the protagonists can be added with the help of the special cards.

18. League of Angels III

  • Platforms: Microsoft Windows, Web browser
  • Game genre: Fantasy
  • Game mode: Massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) 

You will love the AutoPlay feature of League of Angels III, where it will progress even if you are not playing. You just need to come in occasionally and give your next set of commands. 

Depending on which weapon you have chosen, you have three special abilities in this game. As you keep on progressing, you reach higher levels. But each new level also brings tougher challenges to overcome.

Summary: Top 18 free strategy games on PC:

  1. Dota 2 | Download on Steam
  2. Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft | Play on Blizzard website
  3. Total War Arena | Download from Total War Area website
  4. League of Legends | Download from LoL website
  5. 0 A.D. | Download from official website
  6. World of Tanks | Download from official WoT website
  7. Total War Battles: Kingdom | Download on Steam
  8. Paladins | Download on Steam
  9. Imperia Online | Find it here
  10.  Elvenar | Find it here
  11.  The Company Of Myself | Find it here
  12.  Big Farm | Find it here
  13.  Agar.io | Find it here
  14.  Transformice | Find it here
  15.  Galaxy Warfare | Find it here
  16.  Batheo | Find it here
  17.  Cardhunter | Find it here
  18. League of Angels III | Find it here