Ever wanted to leave this modern world of ours and see what life was like back in the old days? Alas, that’ll have to remain a dream, at least until some hotshot scientist invents time travel. 

However, while you can’t literally zing yourself back into the past, you can virtually explore days of old. The ancient world has proven to be a rich source of inspiration for video game developers, and there are plenty of ancient-culture-based games to choose from.

Let’s take a look at some of the best from the Egyptian, Aztec, Roman, and Greek cultures of yesteryear. 

Ancient Egypt

People have always been fascinated by Ancient Egypt, which was filled with enchanting stories and monuments that still continue to stand many thousands of years after they were built. 

This mythology makes it an exceptional base for video games, and over the years there have been plenty that have used Ancient Egypt as a setting. The most famous is probably Assassin’s Creed Origins, widely touted as one of the best in the history of the franchise, which invites players to explore those ancient monuments within their historical context.

Age of Mythology is another that’s worth checking out — forming part of the Age of Empires series, it’s one of the best strategy games of its era and continues to hold up well despite being released in 2002. 

Aztec Culture

Ancient Egypt, Rome, and Greece are well-represented in the video game world, yet for some reason, Aztec culture remains oddly underserved.

However, there are a few titles worth exploring. Aztez is a creative game that blends strategy and fighting with an aesthetically pleasing grayscale backdrop, while Aztaka, a 2009 Windows game, probably offers the best representation of the era.

Thanks to its vivid imagery, the ancient Aztec culture is also commonly found in online slot games. Gonzo’s Quest makes extensive use of Aztec symbols and art, which, along with tribal music and an Amazonian background, helps to transport players back into the ancient world. Games developer Giants Craft is set to release Ecumene Aztec, a third-person survival RPG, in 2025. 

Ancient Rome 

Ancient Rome may well be ancient history, but it continues to have a remarkable impact on the modern world. If you’re a fan of Roman history, then you’ll have plenty of video games to sink your teeth into. 

CivCity: Rome is particularly recommended for history buffs interested in the social and political functions of Ancient Rome.

This city-building game forces players to keep citizens happy and safe — when you’re not promoting the Colosseum, you’ll be defending the city from attack. If you ever wondered what it would be like to be an Emperor, then this game can provide the answer.

If you’re looking for something slightly lighter, then take a look at Gladio & Glory. This fighting game incorporates historical elements, but it’s mostly just fun, especially the one vs. fifty gameplay that sees players battle against fifty opponents in a gladiatorial setting. 

Ancient Greece

Prefer Ancient Greece over Ancient Rome? We’ve got you covered. The best video game set in this era is probably Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, which is set during the legendary Peloponnesian Wars. It’s one of the best titles in the Assassin’s Creed franchise, in large part because the developers went to extreme lengths to make the game as historically accurate as possible.

During the game, you’ll have to battle with order, chaos, democracy, science, and mythology — or, in other words, all the things that the Ancient Greeks had to deal with on a daily. 

Other popular video games set in Ancient Greece include God of War III, 300: March to Glory, and Spartan: Total Warrior. You’ll probably have noticed that all those concern themselves with glorious battles, but that shouldn’t be too surprising — it is Ancient Greece, after all.

Age of Mythology, the game we mentioned in the earlier section about Ancient Egypt, is also partly set in Ancient Greece.

Richard is an experienced tech journalist and blogger who is passionate about new and emerging technologies. He provides insightful and engaging content for Connection Cafe and is committed to staying up-to-date on the latest trends and developments.