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The 10 Best Space Combat Games

Video games and dogfighting go together like peanut butter and chocolate. Games worldwide love nothing more than strapping themselves into virtual cockpits and then battling it out in space.

Whether you’re looking for over-the-top dogfighting, realistic simulations, true-to-scale galaxies, RPG elements, or a mix of all of the above, check out these ten epic space combat games.

10. Freelancer

Digital Anvil

Freelancer is a space trading and combat flight simulation game released in 2000. Players take on the role of spacecraft pilots, exploring the space stations and planets of 48 star systems. Although easy to learn, it’s hard to master. There’s a big mod community that helps improve the game’s replay value.

9. Star Wars: Squadrons

Star Wars: Squadrons
Electronic Arts

If you’ve ever wanted to immerse yourself in the world of Star Wars dogfights, then 2020’s Star Wars: Squadrons is your game. Weapons, thrusters, and shields are in your hands. It offers the best dogfight combat experience of any in the Star Wars series. The game can even be played in VR.

8. Elite Dangerous

Elite Dangerous Odyssey
Frontier Developments

If you want to immerse yourself in a realistic open-world representation of the Milky Way galaxy, 2015’s Elite Dangerous delivers. Actions affect the narrative. There’s lots to do in this game, and replay value as the gameplay is open-ended. It’s also the first in the series to offer near massively multiplayer capabilities.

7. Freespace 2

Freespace 2
Interplay Entertainment

There’s a tight-knit modding community around 1999’s Freespace 2 which speaks to how much this game is beloved. The gameplay is combat-heavy and delivers an arcade-style shooter feel. Overall, it’s an excellent space combat simulation, including that of the ship’s various systems. Players also command a wingman that adds depth to strategic play.

6. Infinity: Battlescape

Infinity Battlescape
I-Novae Studios

Infinity: Battlescape is a massively multiplayer large-scale space battle simulator. It features a seamless, true-to-scale star system that provides a visual spectacle like no other. Even played alone, this game is incredibly fun and entertaining. You’ll battle AI fighters that get replaced when other online players join the battle.

5. Rebel Galaxy

Rebel Galaxy
Double Damage Games

Rebel Galaxy from 2015 stands out among other sci-fi sandbox RPGs due to its space-Western, swashbuckling atmosphere. Although clearly inspired by Firefly and Freelancer, it nonetheless brings originality with its unique combat system. While players control the ship on a 2D plane, combat occurs in 3D environments. The combat rewards strategy over reflexes.

4. House of the Dying Sun

House of the Dying Sun
Marauder Interactive

House of the Dying Sun is an action-packed space battle simulator from 2016 with a space opera storyline. The gameplay is focused on combat with 14 campaign scenarios. It has its own unique feel with a combo of first-person space combat and tactical fleet-command mode. It’s also compatible with VR.


Everspace 2
Rockfish Games

Gorgeous graphics are just a part of the detailed world of EVERSPACE 2 from 2023. This action RPG delivers fast-paced combat, playing like a looter-shooter set in space. Players will be immersed in its open-world, puzzles, as well as mining and crafting mechanics. There’s a full narrative campaign, but combat is where it shines.

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2. NEBULOUS: Fleet Command

Nebulous: Fleet Command
Eridanus Industries

Released in 2022, NEBULOUS: Fleet Command is a slow-burner influenced by science-fiction TV shows like The Expanse. Get ready for some serious gameplay, as its tactical simulation is deep and carries a steep learning curve. However, for patient players, its advanced movement controls, realistic radar, and more deliver a rewarding large-scale experience.

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1. Cobalt Core

Cobalt Core
Rocket Rat Games

Cobalt Core is a sci-fi rogue-like deck-building game released in 2023. Players manage a deck of cards representing their crew-members’ actions. Maneuver your ship to avoid enemy cannon fire as you line up the perfect shot. It’s all about tactical gameplay where every decision counts. The 2D, pixel art style makes it stand out brilliantly in the genre.