Games with philosophical themes that will make you think

Philosophy is a deep and complex subject that was and is being discussed since time immemorial. It has also become a topic in popular culture, with anime like Attack on Titan and movies like Fight Club. There are a number of games that make philosophy a major topic. Here are five games with philosophical themes that’ll raise some intriguing questions and hopefully, even answers in your mind.

This list is ranked in no particular order.

Disclosure: We may earn a commission from links on this page

Soulsborne Games

The cycle of gameplay in the Soulsborne games (Elden Ring, Bloodborne, and Sekiro included), the endless cycle of death and rebirth where you need to find some sort of meaning or purpose in your life is a subject that is widely discussed in topics like existentialism, nihilism, and Buddhism. The lore and story of these games are quite philosophical as well, and I implore you to check these games out.

If you enjoy video game lore, we have a host of Elden Ring lore articles that you may find interesting.

Dragon’s Dogma

Dragon’s Dogma is a widely misunderstood and underrated gem. The game seems like a plain old action RPG where you, the Chosen one, get to do all the stuff that a hero does. But as you delve more into the game’s lore and story, it becomes much more complicated.

This game is flawed in its storytelling department, but the plot is very philosophical and beautiful in its own way. I won’t explain anything else about the story as it will ruin the experience, but know that it also has a great combat system and some of the best boss fights in video games.

Check the game’s official Instagram. They post all sorts of tidbits about the lore of Dragon’s Dogma there. Plus, a sequel to this game is also upcoming!

Fallout: New Vegas

The Truth is, the Game was Rigged from the Start.

Those are the words you’ll hear before delving into one of the deepest political and philosophical stories in the history of gaming. Most players like to use mods in order to improve their experience with this decade-old game.

Fallout: New Vegas

However, I advise you to NOT use any mods that will alter the story or the world of the game too much. This game is an experience that you should not miss.

The Yakuza Franchise

Are “evil” people actually evil? What if they’re just doing what they feel is the right choice? Maybe you’re a villain in their eyes. Maybe they are the good guys.

The Yakuza franchise dives deep into the lives and consciences of humans. This game sympathizes with people whom society frowns upon. Sometimes the seemingly just and good people are snakes under flowers. This whole franchise is an emotional rollercoaster.

The BioShock Franchise

“There’s always a lighthouse. There’s always a man. There’s always a city.

Where do I start…

Like the Yakuza games, BioShock teaches you a lot of life lessons. The story and the atmospheric settings of the games are brilliant. When you play these games, be sure to collect the collectibles to uncover more about the world, and pay close attention to the environment.

If you haven’t played any of these games, all you need to know is that BioShock is an absolute masterpiece. Check out BioShock: The Collection as it contains all the games in one pack. It goes on sale frequently at places like the Humble Store.

Even though I only chose five games with philosophical themes, there are a lot of them out there. What games would you include? Let us know on the forums!