The Best Space RPG Games Not Named Mass Effect


If you thought that the three games that make up the Mass Effect franchise (and no, Andromeda doesn't count) are the only space RPG games worth talking about, then you're wrong.

Homeworld Remastered might not be your typical RPG, but we still recommend giving it a play.

While the Mass Effect franchise no doubt deserves all the love, there are other space RPG games out there too.

Scroll down below to find out the best space RPG games not named Mass Effect.

Halcyon 6

Halycon 6 is probably the best space RPG game that you have never heard of -- until now.

This tactical space RPG simulator incorporates elements from multiple genres. It has you gathering resources by sending out ships as the leader of the last vestiges of humanity who find themselves living in an ancient space station. But, you don't just send out ships too. You'll have to train capable captains to commandeer these ships and do combat against whatever lurks out there.

While this neat little cycle of building ships to gather necessary resources and training captains all the while managing your crew with the occasional space invaders would've made a nice game on its own, Halcyon 6 ups the ante by having you defend against a hostile race of invasive space monsters known as the Chrull.

Much of the story of the game revolves around you preparing humanity for the Chrull, who are hellbent on destroying the galaxy.

However, that's not all. You can also interact with other factions in the galaxy. You can choose to work for them or against them or even work with them. The game even lets you exchange dialogue with the said factions.

This creates some genuinely hilarious interactions that help elevate the game from a good space RPG title to one of the best out there.

Star Traders: Frontiers

Star Traders: Frontiers lets you live out your dreams of commandeering your own ship as its captain.

The game lets you create your own captain and pick out your own ship. Then, from there, it's up to you who you will fill it up with. Do you get a crew of pilots? Navigators? Swordsmen? The game has a wide selection of niche experts for you to choose from and fill your crew with.

Being a newbie captain, the game is understandably hard at the beginning. However, once you've scrounged up a bit of money, the galaxy becomes yours for the taking.

In Star Traders: Frontiers, you're defined by the people around you. Specifically, your crew and your ship. This is why the game takes great lengths to let you customize and organize your ship and crew however you like it.

From space invasions to turning in criminals and hunting down bounties, as well as dealing with the black market, everything you do affects the economy in Star Traders: Frontiers.

EVE Online

They say that if you want to keep someone off of drugs, you need to teach them how to play EVE Online.

We don't exactly know who said it and we're pretty sure we just came up with it right on the spot, but it describes perfectly just how much of a money sinkhole the game is.

The legendary space-based MMORPG is run by a very complicated player-controlled economy that, at its very core, is held together by a bunch of random players all minding their own business.

EVE Online is the perfect game for those who prefer interacting with other players. But, even though the game is all about player interactions, it still gives players who prefer to ride solo occasionally a lot of things to do.

While it's reputed to be a game that demands a lot of your time, that's only if you plan on taking it seriously. After all, you can't exactly enjoy the entertainment value of joining a hundred-strong alliance and waging war against others by not investing your time, sweat, money, and tears, into the game.

With that said, there's a little bit of everything for everybody in EVE Online, which is exactly just how a space RPG game should be.

Destiny 2

Similar to Bungee's initial outing, the sequel, Destiny 2, is primarily a first-person shooter title. However, because it incorporates just enough elements commonly found in role-playing games (and MMOs), we thought it right to include it in our round-up of some of the best space RPG games available out there.

As a shooter, Destiny 2 has it all.

Multiple PvP modes to sink your time into? Check.

Huge multiplayer boss fights? Double-check.

Tons and tons of loot for you to pick up and mix and match? Definitely.

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Last but definitely not the least, the game has these super long story arcs that are just clever enough to keep you engaged and interested in what's happening around you in the long haul.

While all of these are fun though, what really makes Destiny 2 stand out is its shooting mechanics.

All in all, Destiny 2 is one of the best space RPG games available today. The best part? It's a free-to-play title. You can easily find yourself sinking dozens of hours into the game first before you think about spending even a dime on it.

Stellaris

4X games are notoriously difficult to get into. Most of them have a steep learning curve that will turn away many interested players.

Stellaris is not an exception.

If, however, you stick to it, Stellaris will treat you to a grand 4X strategy-hybrid title that sees you quelling everything from mutant rebellions to robotic uprisings, as well as create your own unique race of space-faring aliens as you attempt to try and play as the proverbial god of your very own little universe in the game.

Although the game is primarily single-player, the multiplayer aspect isn't half-bad either.

Here, you'll get to meet other players who are just as crazy and as experimental as you are. You might even end up meeting a diabolical tyrant who rules with an iron fist.

Homeworld Remastered Collection

There are just some games that never get old.

Homeworld is one of those titles that just sticks with you for the rest of your life.

This series of real-time strategy titles originally came out nearly two decades ago, which saw the developers release an expansion, a sequel, and recently, a remastered collection that helps bring all the games under one proverbial roof.

Predominantly a strategy title, Homeworld has a tragic and tense story filled with discovery and a bitter-sweet ending.

Words simply just can't describe this masterpiece. It's an experience that you'll have to go through yourself for you to get what we mean.

Elite Dangerous

Don't let the description fool you. Elite Dangerous is more than just a "space flight simulation game".

How fun and enjoyable the game becomes is proportionate to how much you're willing to invest in it and we're not just talking about the money.

While the game does a great job in giving players multiple planets to visit and missions to complete, players can do a lot of things out of their own volition that helps make the game better. This includes everything from exploring the remote areas of the galaxy to rescuing stranded ships and even hosting races against each other.

Speaking of races, Elite does a perfect job of capturing the feeling of tinkering on your own project car for so long and finally seeing it in action.

Just think of it as the proverbial long Sunday drive, but in space.

The Ur-Quan Masters

The Ur-Quan Masters is proof that you should never judge a game by how it looks.

Easily one of the simplest-looking games on our list, and that's putting it lightly, UQM, as we'll now refer to it, plays from a top-down perspective and incorporates elements of exploration, combat, diplomacy, and role-playing in a game that you could probably run on a potato.

The game puts you in the shoes of the commander of a lost research mission with the goal of re-establishing contact with Earth. However, what starts as a simple task ends up with you trying to free the inhabitants of the planet Earth from the Ur-Quan by gathering up allies and resources from all across the universe.

For a game that looks this basic, you'd be surprised just how deeply complicated and involved it is.

Cosmic Star Heroine

Taking inspiration from both classic and modern RPGs, Cosmic Star Heroine is the brainchild of the same people behind one of the more unique RPGs of its time, Cthulu Saves the World.

The game lets you take control of a secret agent named Alyssa L'Salle. However, after discovering what seems to be a galaxy-threatening conspiracy, she finds herself having to go rogue to save everything she holds dear.

Throughout her journey, she'll find herself exploring three planets full of everything from aliens, robots, magic, as well as forbidden technology en route to putting a stop to a galactic threat.

Conclusion

Of course, given that there are numerous space RPG games out there, there's no doubt that we've missed out on a couple.

Still, if you're looking for a starting list of recommendations, these 9 are the best.

From here, you can go on exploring other space RPG games out there and decide for yourself which one fits your needs and preferences better.

Ray Ampoloquio
Ray is based in the Philippines. He is a lifelong gamer and a PC hardware enthusiast. He builds and repairs laptops and computers for friends and family in his spare time. You can find Ray on Twitter.