The 10 Best Games Set in Africa

Image credit: Steam

With the growth of the gaming industry across Africa, more video game developers are getting inspiration from the continent.

Due to its tumultuous political climate and rich culture and history, Africa makes an ideal setting for action-packed FPS games, historical RTS games, and more.

Many of the best games set in Africa are available on popular platforms, including the PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Nintendo, and PCs. These games are as diverse as the continent itself in terms of the categories that they have spread across.

In this guide, I have put together brief descriptions of the ten best games set in Africa. There are some hidden gems in there, so enjoy!

Assassin’s Creed Origins

From Native Americans to Italians and Viking Warriors to Caribbean Pirates, the Assassin’s Creed franchise has always done its best to showcase its multicultural pedigree.

The developers, Ubisoft, set new standards for their flagship series with the introduction of Assassin’s Creed: Origins. It is an action role-playing game released by Ubisoft in 2017 on PS4, Xbox One, Stadia, and Microsoft Windows.

This game allows players to explore Ptolemaic Egypt at the height of its glory, with cities like Alexandria and several other sites beside the River Nile.

Players can explore various historical locations in this ancient kingdom as they complete side-quests and the story missions.

The game begins with a tutorial sequence showing how the protagonist, Bayek, escaped from a temple to reunite with his family and friends after several years.

The story is familiar — a man seeks revenge against very corrupt leadership, for reasons both political and personal. But the efforts put into the characterization of its cast make the story more compelling than previous entries.

You’ll travel by horse, camel, or on foot across vast canyons and deserts. You’ll fight crocodiles and also explore ancient tombs.

Assassin’s Creed: Origins, with its cultural roots and remarkable efforts at historical accuracy is considered to be up there with the best action-adventure games for Xbox Series X/S, and it is also undoubtedly one of the best games set in Africa.

Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation

The developers of Tomb Raider, Core Design, created The Last Revelation as the fifth game in the series.

This action-adventure game was first released by Eidos Interactive for Microsoft Windows and PlayStation in 1999, and then for Mac OS and Dreamcast the following year.

Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation is set in ancient Egypt, and it features several elements that are now standard for the series — exploring ruins and tombs, solving puzzles, shooting enemies, and collecting treasure.

The game focuses on allowing players to explore the ruins of ancient temples and tombs of pharaohs.

The story revolves around Lara Croft, an archaeologist-adventurer as she embarks on a quest to imprison an Egyptian god after mistakenly setting him free. She has to navigate levels split into several areas set in Cambodia and Egypt, and fight enemies.

As she journeys into the ancient tombs hidden under the pyramids, Lara Croft encounters various challenges that test her experience and skills.

While looking to stop Werner Von Croy, you’ll visit the Luxor temple, the Valley of Kings, the Great Pyramid, and several other locations across Ancient Egypt.

Solving puzzles will enable you to find keys or other items needed to unlock passageways or doors. Once found, the keys allow access to secret spots that contain special items such as treasures or weapons.

If you’re looking for a true African experience, it doesn’t get much better than this.

Sniper Elite 3

Sniper Elite 3 is a tactical shooter cum stealth game developed by Rebellion Developments.

The game was released in 2014 for the PS4, PS4, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, Xbox 360, and Microsoft Windows. It is the third entry in the Sniper Elite franchise and a prequel to 2012’s Sniper Elite 2.

The game is set about three years before the events of Sniper Elite 2, following Karl Fairburne’s exploits during World War 2 in the North African conflict.

The game involves more tactics and stealth, so you won’t have much luck running around the battleground guns blazing or time to stop and take in the sights. However, if you manage to find a vantage point, the African landscape view is quite impressive.

In this game, Karl Fairburne is tasked with completing several clandestine missions to obstruct the plan of the Nazis to develop a deadly weapon in the region, and eliminate the renegade commander responsible.

With that end goal in mind, Sniper Elite 3 presents different missions that occur around the major war operations and doesn’t throw you into the heart of the battle.

However, you’ll get your fill of the landscapes of war-torn Africa and also visit desert battlefields and occupied cities.

Various locations such as Kasserine Pass, Tobruk, and Western Egypt come to the fore throughout the campaign, and you participate in crucial fights against the Afrika Korps.

For anyone looking for a tactical game set in Africa, Sniper Elite 3 is an ideal choice.

Uncharted 4

This action-adventure video game was developed by Naughty Dog. It was then published by Sony Computer Entertainment for the PS4 in 2016 and later for Microsoft Windows and PS5 in 2022.

The game takes players around the globe to a couple of beautiful, scenic locations, from the snowy hills in Scotland to the beaches in Madagascar. However, you’ll also spend lots of time exploring dingy crypts and dark caves.

Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End incorporates platformer elements, puzzles, stealth, melee combat, and firearms to fight enemies.

It also features an online multiplayer mode where up to nine other players can engage in competitive or cooperative modes.

You assume control of a former treasure hunter, Nathan Drake, who is persuaded by Samuel, his presumed-dead brother, out of retirement. Together with Nathan’s old partner, Sullivan Victor, he embarks on a quest to find clues to where Henry Avery’s lost treasure is located.

They discover a map leading them to a cathedral in the Scottish Highlands, where they find a hidden ancient temple and another map spotlighting King’s Bay of Madagascar.

This country has a unique landscape and is among the few locations where you may find yourself in a desert one minute, and a rainforest the next.

You can explore various environments, moving through different locations, including buildings, wilderness, and towns to progress through the story.

You will also discover animals unique to Madagascar and experience numerous lemur sightings.

Uncharted 4 is not just one of the best games set in Africa, it is one of the best video gaming experiences out there.

Ace Combat: Assault Horizon

This flight simulation game is a spin-off entry to the Ace Combat series. Bandai Namco published the game for the Xbox 360 and PS3 platforms in 2011 and later published it for Microsoft Windows PCs in 2013.

Unlike other video games in the series (but similar to Ace Combat: Joint Assault), Ace Combat: Assault Horizon is set in real-world locations.

Its story takes place between 2015 – 2016, in various locations within the Middle East, East Africa, the United States, and Russia.

Ace Combat: Assault Horizon has a gameplay feature known as Close-Range Assault, which aims to boost the intensity and bring the action closer to you.

In this game, it’s called “Airstrike Mode” for air-to-ground battles and “Dogfight Mode” for air-to-air combat.

Most of the protagonists are members of the UN’s 108th Force, a joint military organization (NATO-Russian) primarily assigned to stop the rebellion from spreading fast in East Africa.

You’ll mostly control the leader of the US Air Force’s team, Lt Col William Bishop. He’s assisted by French NATO General La Pointe, Jose “Guts” Gutierrez (wingman), and pilots of the UN 108th’s Shooter, Spooky, and Nomad squadrons.

In 2015, Africa comes under siege from a large rebellion called ‘SRN’. Overwhelmed by this sudden surge, the governments in the East African region decide to request help from the UN, which also turns to NATO.

The most affected area is Hamada, a desert region in East Africa that became a centerpiece during the uprising of the New Russian Federation.

If you’re looking for a military combat game set in Africa, then Ace Combat: Assault Horizon is a great option.

Ancestors: The Humankind Odyssey

Ancestors: The Humankind Odyssey is an excellent survival video game developed by Panache Digital Games. It was released by Private Division in 2019 for the PS4, Xbox One, and Microsoft Windows.

The game is set in a large jungle located in prehistoric Africa. It’s an open world with dangerous elements and animals, such as African rock python, African buffalo, giant miocene otters, Adcrocuta hyenas, Crocodylus thorbjarnarsoni, and more.

The story is about how modern humans began as a species. Your objective is to guide the lineage/clan through 8 million years of evolution and survival.

You won’t evolve the hominids into humans, but you’ll learn to become better hominids by getting neuronal energy.

You must make sure the hominid clan survives as it gradually evolves to become a new species. You’ll assume control of a hominid and must manage their health by drinking, sleeping, and eating.

You can climb trees but will get injured if you’re attacked by predators or if you fall. As you progress, new locations are unlocked for you to explore. As hominids procreate, all unlocked skills are transferred to future generations.

You can switch to control other characters like an elder, a mother with a child, an adult, and an infant.

As the clan expands, your character will be able to perform social tasks such as migrating to settle in a new place on the map or calling other members to explore and hunt together.

Resident Evil 5

If you love playing horror video games, you should try out Resident Evil 5 if you haven’t already.

This survival horror game is the only installment in the series set in Africa, so it’s a pretty unique experience.

Published and developed by Capcom, Resident Evil 5 was released for Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360, and PS3 consoles in 2009. It was later published for the PS4, Nintendo Switch, and Shield Android TV in 2016.

The Japanese developers are known to pay little attention to their work’s political accuracy, focusing mainly on the aesthetic presentation.

On that note, I would assume that fans of the series waited with bated breath when the fifth entry of the series was announced to take place in Africa.

Resident Evil 5 is set in Kijuju, a fictional map in Africa. Players assume the role of Chris Redfield, a familiar character in the series.

The story follows a terrorist threat being investigated by Bioterrorism Security Assessment Alliance (BSAA) agents, Sheva Alomar and Chris Redfield in Kijuju. Chris must confront his former partner and an old enemy to achieve success.

The gameplay in Resident Evil 5 is more action-oriented, but that’s a welcome change for the old franchise, especially seeing as the initial scenes where Chris is seen shooting at lots of zombified Africans weren’t well received at first.

After the brief initial stages of using white power on the villagers in Kijuju, the game progresses to more classic locations that Resident Evil fans are familiar with – creepy caves, abandoned military bases, etc.

At the end of the day, it’s a classic Resident Evil experience, and that’s a good thing.

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is a stealth video game published by Konami and developed by Kojima Productions. It’s the ninth entry in the Metal Gear franchise.

The game was launched worldwide in 2015 for the PS3, PS4, Microsoft Windows, Xbox One, and Xbox 360.

Set in 1984, exactly 9 years after the occurrences of Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes, the game is about Punished “Venom” Snake, a mercenary leader who ventures into the Angola-Zaire border area and Afghanistan during the Soviet War.

Snake seeks revenge on those who conquered his forces and almost killed him during the peak of Ground Zeroes.

The game features more than 40 different animals, which players can capture and send back to their Animal Conservation Platform after completing a minimum of three missions between 07 to 10.

You can tranquilize and either manually pick up or Fulton-recover some of the animals, while others can be captured using capture cages in specific locations.

Gameplay elements remain almost the same as Ground Zeroes, which implies that you must sneak from various points in the open world, remaining undetected and avoiding enemy guards.

The game encourages players to advance without killing and only use non-lethal weapons like tranquilizer darts to overpower enemies.

As far as stealth-focused video games go, Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is a gem. It is one of the best stealth games for PS5, the Xbox Series S/X, and several other gaming platforms.

Serious Sam 3: BFE

If you’re looking for a first-person shooter game set in Africa, Serious Sam 3: BFE offers an immersive shooting experience. Created by Croteam, this game is the fourth installment in the main Serious Sam series.

Serious Sam 3: BFE is set in ancient Egypt, during Mental’s invasion of the world, and following the events of Serious Sam: The First Encounter.

The game was initially released by Devolver Digital for Microsoft Windows in 2011, but it was later published for Xbox One, Xbox 360, Nintendo Switch, Mac OS X, Linux, PS3, and PS4.

Serious Sam 3: BFE offers unlimited unfiltered fun, as long as you don’t get tired of blowing up enemies. Players assume the role of the Legendary hero Sam Stone “Serious” as he tries to save the world from an alien invasion.

Apart from the settings centered around the ruins of Egypt, you will also be exploring vivid South American arenas, fighting seemingly endless hordes of enemies using destructive weapons such as heavy lasers, a huge cannon, a minigun, rocket launchers, and shotguns.

You can also battle against hordes of enemies with up to four players in local co-op mode or 16 players in online multiplayer, blasting your way through together or in survival (lone wolf) mode.

Online multiplayer mode features Team Deathmatch, Regular Deathmatch, and more.

Beautiful Desolation

South African developer, The Brotherhood Games, created an incredibly unique, highly stylized, and exceptional game in Beautiful Desolation.

This 2D isometric adventure game was initially released on Microsoft Windows in 2020 and is available on PS4, Nintendo Switch, Linux, and Mac.

In addition to its superb narration, the visual effects, world, and graphics are unbelievably impressive for a video game created by such a small studio. The world and story have depth and introduce pretty interesting concepts.

The game is set in an alternate South Africa, about a decade after Penrose’s arrival. This benevolent alien accelerates human technology by several centuries, propelling the human race into a supposed space race.

The story kicks off with Penrose settling in South Africa, and you play Mark Leslie, a reporter who’s tired of the alien structure and its unusual silence.

With rustic environments dotting the map, and strange factions and cults roaming the land (all drawing inspiration from real African tribes), there’s a clear image of what the South African world would look like if you fast-forward through centuries of technological, alien, and mutant evolution.

The eleven official languages of South Africa are all represented exceptionally within this game, and it gives a nice extra touch of culture to it.

Beautiful Desolation is still primarily in the English language, but features a good amount of Afrikaans too, with some Venda, Sotho, Tswana, Xhosa, etc., thrown in.

The game truly respects and embraces the seeds of The Brotherhood Games‘ homeland while drawing inspiration from the fruits born by those seeds and adapting it for a global audience.