Best Civilization Game. Ranked from Best to Worst (2023)

May 8, 2023

Nowadays, there are 6 completely different versions of Civilization game and many downloadable expansions.

But which Civilization game is the best?

To answer this question, I have decided to write this article where I show you the best Civilization game at first, and then you can go ahead with my ranked list from the best to the worst Civilization game in case you do not like the first one.

What is the Best Civilization Game?

Civilization VI is the best game of the Civilization series. Even though it didn’t change much after the Civilization V, this is the most recent and polished version of the game with an improved AI and multiplayer, better graphics, and more challenging gaming experience.

Best Civilization Games Ranked from Best to Worst

Civilization VI

1. Civilization VI

I have already said that Civilization VI is the best Civilization game, so let’s just sum up what has been changed here.

The game doesn’t introduce any new radical features as it was noticeable during the upgrade from Civilization IV to Civilization V, only a technology research tree.

Nevertheless, it still tops the list simply because of the necessary fixes in the game mechanics from its predecessor and modern graphics.

So, if you're looking for the only Civilization game to start with, and you’re not interested in the history of the legendary franchise, just go with Civilization VI.

Civilization V

2. Civilization V

Although Civilization V was moved from the peak of the list by the latest installment, it will be always remembered as the most innovative game in the series.

First and foremost, starting from Civilization V, the victory can be achieved in seven ways: research, diplomacy, exploration, expansion, economic development, government and military conquest.

Secondly, to the game were introduced hexagonal tiles that prevent the unit stacking into a single tile.

In addition to that, there are also improved visuals and sounds, advanced diplomacy, new combat system, city-states, NPCs, better multiplayer, and more.

Among the cons of Civilization V are weak AI, removed vassalage and religion, and simplified espionage, but after the release of DLCs such as Gods & Kings and Brave New World, everything is fixed.

Civilization IV

2. Civilization IV

The third best Civilization game is the fourth edition.

Civilization IV has taken over the gameplay from the Civilization III with a few changes: brand-new game engine, stabilized multiplayer mode, and increased impact of the religion.

With an appearance of a new game engine in Civilization IV, now it is possible to see what is happening in your empire simply by zooming it in rather than just watching the city view screen which was available in the previous games of the series.

Civilization III

4. Civilization III

With the release of the third game, Civilization has undergone significant changes; therefore, it can be called the best Civilization game which paved the way to the Civilization as we see it today.

The first major improvement we can see in the game is the new elements of culture, nationality, and the arts.

Secondly, it has expanded the scope on the new Wonders of the World, Great People, and technologies.

In addition to this, the game features an advanced trade system, improved combat options, and active world generator.

Lastly, I think this is the most important change of the game, in Civilization III there are not two but five victory conditions. Despite conquest and the space race, you can also win the game by dominating the two-thirds of the planet, being elected as a head of the United Nations, or assimilating other civilizations.

Civilization II

5. Civilization II

Civilization II is mostly similar to its predecessor, with slight gameplay improvements.

First of all, the game view has changed from the top-down to the isometric perspective.

Secondly, things from the first game such as world wonders, technologies, units, and civilizations were significantly extended.

The artificial intelligence of the enemy has been updated positively.

Besides that, in the game also was added ‘High Council’ which you can ask for advice in military, economics, politics, science, and human well-being areas.

Lastly, thanks to the modification of the first game ‘CivNet’, Civilization II has received a multiplayer mode.

Civilization I

6. Civilization I

This is the game from where it all began.

Although its interface and sound effects are quite primitive, that was enough to be named the best game of all times on the PC in 1996 where the gameplay was appreciated more than the visuals.

The campaign begins in 4000 BC and you need to develop your civilization up until the Space Age. As well as in the later Civilization games you need to discover new technologies, build cities, and make important political, military, and economic decisions.

There are only two ways the game can be won. Firstly, you can achieve victory by conquering all other civilizations. And secondly, you can do that by winning the space race.


To sum up, although it might be confusing to find out the best Civilization game yourself, I recommend you to try its three the most recent editions starting with the Civilization VI, which I prefer the most, until you find your favorite.

I hope you enjoyed reading this article and now you know which Civilization game is the best.

If you have any comments or suggestions, feel free to put them down in the comments section below.

Thanks for reading! Have fun!