Battle games

Battle is Beautiful

Battle games are a genre for those of you who like things direct. If, when you enter a beautifully rendered game world of exquisite beauty your only question is “who do I fight first?” then you’re home. Battle games exist because sometimes all you need from a video game is the chance to fight something. Sometimes conflict is all the drama you need. Sometimes you just want to battle.

Boundless Battles

For most of the early history of video games, it seemed that games and battle were the same exact thing. Early machines in the golden era of arcades were filled with the ritualized battle of sports or with actual fights. Whether between aliens and humans or between a monkey and a plumber, conflict seemed to be an inevitable part of digital play in the arcades of the eighties and nineties.

Us Against The World

Starting in 1984, the “beat ‘em up”, or brawler game, introduced a multiplayer element to arcade battling, with players taking on waves of enemies, solo or in pairs. The belt-scrolling brawler was a classic format and defined arcade battling in the late golden era.

Brawler games often featured pulpy stories of underworld revenge and street crime, surfing the wave of action movies that were huge at the time. Franchise tie-ins were common, featuring superheroes and action stars, or obvious copies of them.

Show Me Your Fighting Style

In the 1990s, battle games entered a new era, with the most popular focused on singular armed combat in a side-on, arcade style.

The release of Street Fighter II is widely considered to have kicked off this golden age of fighting games and is still regarded as a classic today. While visually basic compared to anything now, it combined a snappiness of control with a button combo system that required perfect timing to master.

It also featured a cast of extraordinary, memorable characters in a story that, while rudimentary by today’s standards, resonated with fans.

Throughout the nineties, as arcades declined, the 1 v 1 battle games helped maintain their edge. Home games console fighting games couldn’t yet match the full power of the arcades without modifications and so die-hard fans stayed loyal to the arcades for a few more years.

Bringing Fists to a Gunfight

Throughout this time, PC players, with their generally more powerful processors, were seeing huge graphical improvements in the first person shooter (“FPS”) genre. The end of the nineties saw the release of such influential FPS titles as Half-Life and paved the way for juggernauts like the Halo franchise.

Hardware improvements on home consoles allowed the machines to run FPS titles, and the evolution of game controllers made them easier than ever to play. The age of the console shooter had arrived, and virtual battle had just gotten a lot more realistic.

War Never Changes

In the 2000s, battle games were firmly focused on modern military warfare, with a swathe of huge FPS titles dominating the market and becoming worldwide hits. Realism in graphics, combined with movie-quality stories wowed fans and generated new debate over the morality of conflict in games.

By this time, gaming had begun to become the colossal industry it is today and there were hundreds of games that didn’t feature battling of any kind. Whole genres of games—simulators, digital pets, lifestyle games to name but a few—contained no combat at all. While various forms of combat still made up the bulk of games released each year, it was becoming clear that the link between gaming and battling wasn’t unbreakable.

The Battle Royale Era

The original “battle royal”—from which the battle royale of gaming gets its name—was a fight involving lots of boxers or wrestlers that went on until only one was left standing. Although the context is very different in games, the underlying principle is the same—many play but only one wins.

Battle games now are dominated by the battle royale mode of multiplayer. It’s a mode that was made popular in 2017, when PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (better known as PUBG to gamers), launched in its latest version. It included a battle royale mode and was an immediate hit with players and streamers, defining a form of play that was as engaging to watch as it was to play. It soon became one of the best-selling and most-played games of all time.

Shortly after, Epic Games released Fortnite, which was (and still is) a worldwide phenomenon. Fortnite took the battle royale format and made it a bright, arcade-style experience that provided gamers with a different challenge each time, including map changes and game-changing weapons like airplanes.

Now, most major FPS and battle games have a battle royale mode, including many of the biggest FPS titles on the market each year and draw millions of players to their online arenas to do battle. It seems there’s no battle like a battle royale.

The Smaller Battles

Of course, a battle game can just mean a game that focusses on battles. Real time strategy games are a classic type of video game that has had a loyal following since the early days of video games. Although part of a sub-genre, “RTS” games invariably feature plenty of battles! As do animal battler games—catching ‘em all is only half of Pokemon’s appeal, after all.

Players love battle games because they’re a great test of skill and strategy and an example of emergent narrative, with each match becoming a story in itself. Winning a battle is the ultimate reward, as you prove you can outlast all your enemies.

With our selection of battle games, you can fight one on one, enter a war against the enemy or join a battle royale and try to be the last player standing. Our battle games, like all our games on GamePix, are completely free. Our games don’t use Flash and there’s no need for installation, so you can run them in any browser. You won’t find difficult instructions or complex storylines. Instead, all our battle games are built with one thing in mind: simple gameplay and lots of fun. You'll become the king or queen of the battlefield in no time.


What are some free battle royale games?

All of the online battle royale games here on GamePix are completely free! Our browser battle royale games work on any web capable device and include Call of Tanks and Mini Royale Nations.

What are battle royale games?

In video games, a battle royale match is a form of online, multiplayer play in which many individuals, teams or both compete on a knockout basis to be the last team or man standing. Battle Royales usually feature a mechanic whereby the playable area on the shared map gradually gets smaller, forcing the remaining players into close quarter combat.

What are the most popular battle?

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