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35 Games Like Minecraft Worth Playing Right Now

While the creator of "Minecraft," the uber popular crafting and exploration game, might have a shady past, the game itself has lived well beyond its origins. "Minecraft" has had several updates over the years, including its "Caves & Cliffs" expansion, keeping fans engaged with additional content, but that doesn't mean that those gamers will want to play it forever. The title encourages players to build their own worlds, exploring procedurally generated lands in order to obtain building materials. Gamers have taken things a step farther, creating games within the game. One "Minecraft" creator, MrBeast, even went so far as to pay $16,000 for someone else to construct him a house in the game. The possibilities in "Minecraft" truly are endless.

For those looking for something beyond "Minecraft," here are 35 games that engage in the core tenets of the title that started it all: crafting, exploration, adventure, and building. Nothing quite compares to the blocky, building block like world of "Minecraft," but these games sure do come close. Whether exploring as Link in "Breath of the Wild" or engaging in more traditional building in "Rust," these titles should delight those in love with creating their own stories and worlds.

Stardew Valley

"Stardew Valley," like a lot of games on this list, isn't anything new, but it does provide a similar, yet different experience for fans of "Minecraft." In "Stardew Valley," players find themselves in possession of an old, overgrown farm in need of some good old fashioned TLC. By building up the farm, creating meaningful relationships with townspeople, and working through a storyline to restore the town's community center, players have the opportunity to impress the ghost of their grandfather and, more importantly, make a home for themselves.

For those who find strategy and building the most interesting aspects of "Minecraft," "Stardew Valley" similarly offers near-limitless ways for players to customize and craft to their hearts' content.

  • Release Date: Feb. 26, 2016
  • Available On: PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, iOS, Nintendo Switch, PS Vita
  • Genre: Farming simulation, Roleplaying
  • Game Modes: Single-player, online multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: 87 (Switch), 88 (iOS), 89 (PC), 86 (PS4), 89 (Xbox One)


Unlike a lot of simulation games, "Terraria" doesn't pretend to have an overarching plot. Instead, it highlights sandbox style gameplay through procedurally generated worlds, allowing players to unleash their creativity and mold the world to their desires. Players can fight enemies, upgrade their equipment, construct a homestead, and customize the world through their actions.

It would be reductive to call "Terraria" a farming simulator, because it does much more than that, however, it does incorporate farming elements alongside its building mechanics. Players that want to create a world without an end goal, or who want to unleash their creativity on a planet, should check this indie gem out. Even years after its release, "Terraria" still has a dedicated fanbase creating new worlds.

  • Release Date: May 16, 2011 
  • Available On: PC, iOS, PS4, Switch, Xbox One, 3DS, PS3, Wii U
  • Genre: Action-adventure, platformer
  • Game Modes: Single-player, multiplayer co-op
  • Metacritic Score: 82 (iOS), 83 (PS4), 83 (PC), 82 (Switch), 84 (Xbox One)


"Roblox" has lived many lives since its release in 2006, and has been used as a platform to create other games, as well as a way for friends to meet up and chat online. It's MMO-quality means that "Roblox" has a thriving community of creative minds, all ready to artistically render their ideas in blocky, animated form. One of the most appealing aspects of "Roblox" is that it can be played anywhere, on mobile devices as well as many consoles and PCs.

YouTuber Brianna Arsement told SVG that "Roblox" gives players enormous freedom. She compared it to an open sandbox, where players can choose what sort of experience they want to have. If they want to create their own area, they can, but it's also possible to simply explore others' worlds. As an example of the amazing things "Roblox" creators can make, there's even a "Squid Game"-styled obstacle course.

  • Release Date: 2006 (PC)
  • Available On: PC, iOS, Xbox One
  • Genre: Action-adventure, sandbox
  • Game Modes: Single-player, multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: N/A


"Trove" may look a lot like "Minecraft," the MMO places a greater emphasis on battling and improving one's combat than creation. While players can indeed build their own world, "Trove" features an immersive combat system as well. Players can choose their combat class, tailoring their characters' build to their own gaming strengths, then dive into massive dungeons in hopes of finding treasure, rare items, and glory.

Every piece of the world is "fully destructible," meaning that if players can see it, they can break it. This mechanic makes the blocky world feel even more like a child's toy box, which emphasizes the way "Trove" puts an emphasis on play and exploration. Players that love breaking things apart and planning out their strategies for combat will definitely identify with "Trove."

  • Release Date: July 9, 2015 
  • Available On: PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One
  • Genre: Action adventure, Sandbox
  • Game Modes: Single-player, multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: 65 (PS4)


"Starbound" offers all the fun of resource management and crafting found in "Minecraft" and repackages it into a space-themed exploration game. Players are the captain of their own starship, but where they choose to go from there is up to them. They can explore and conquer the galaxy, visiting a variety of planets and alien races, or they can choose to settle down and really develop their small spot in the universe.

According to its Steam description, "Starbound" is easily moddable, meaning that players can customize their experience as much or little as they desire. Through customization and the open-ended nature of the game – which doesn't really feature a linear plot – players can decide what sort of experience they want to have. Like "Minecraft," "Starbound" also features the option to encounter hostile creatures in the wild, meaning that combat plays an important part in the title as well.

  • Release Date: July 22, 2016
  • Available On: PC
  • Genre: Action adventure, fantasy
  • Game Modes: Single-player
  • Metacritic Score: 81

Dragon Quest Builders 2

"Dragon Quest Builders 2" was one of the most underappreciated games of 2019, but it has still developed a loyal fan following since its release. A spinoff of the famous JRPG "Dragon Quest," the game features a full plotline centered around a mysterious cult that seeks to eradicate builders from the world. Though the player character is just an apprentice, they manage to escape the cult and learn how to become a building master while stranded on a desert island. Of course, part of that learning experience involves building with convenient blocks to create beautiful and functional masterpieces.

Despite being a sequel, "Dragon Quest Builders 2" is a standalone game that improves upon its original formula, providing fans with a colorful, thoughtful experience in the art style of acclaimed "Dragon Ball" artist Akira Toriyama.

  • Release Date: July 12, 2019 
  • Available On: Switch, PS4, PC, Xbox One
  • Genre: Action-adventure, sandbox, farming sim
  • Game Modes: Single-player, multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: 85 (Switch), 85 (PC), 86 (PS4)

Don't Starve

"Don't Starve" is a survival game that doesn't compromise style for mechanics. Players control Wilson, a dapper gentleman that looks like he might've stepped out of a Tim Burton movie. By guiding Wilson around a ruthless, but gorgeously animated landscape, crafting tools and finding nourishment along the way, players can see exactly how long they can survive in the wilds. Surviving isn't easy, either. Players begin each session with absolutely nothing (unless playing a character that has a special tool or ability) and must learn to make fire and find food on their own.

Since its release in 2013, "Don't Starve" has had a number of DLC packs that expand the world. Some packs add new characters players, while others add challenges and obstacles for Wilson to face off against, like giants. Each addition to the game maintains its delightfully dark visuals, making the aesthetics of the game even more on point.

  • Release Date: April 23, 2013 Available On: PC, iOS, Xbox One, Switch
  • Genre: Action adventure, sandbox, survival
  • Game Modes: single-player
  • Metacritic Score: 79 (PC), 87 (iOS), 78 (Switch)


"Rust" had a blip of fame at the beginning of 2021, surprising gamers who had known about the survival title for years. "Rust" became popular after streamers began playing, sometimes engaging in roleplaying sessions (as in the case of OfflineTV) where players concocted entire personas to play as.

Even outside of streamer attention, "Rust" stands as one of the best survival titles currently available. It's easy to pick up, but difficult to master, and offers a fun opportunity to play with friends, establishing bases and going to war against each other or teaming up to build the perfect base. The influence of "Minecraft" is clear in some of the building mechanics of "Rust," making it the perfect next step for any player who enjoys survival sims and strategy.

  • Release Date: Feb. 8, 2018 
  • Available On: PC, PS4, Xbox One
  • Genre: Action adventure, survival
  • Game Modes: Single-player, multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: 69 (PC), 66 (PS4), 64 (Xbox One)


"Frostpunk" asks players to make difficult decisions. Do you put children to work in dangerous factories in order to have enough resources to build your community, or do you protect the children and let the colony starve? There are no easy answers in "Frostpunk," a brutal resource management sim where players take on the role of the leader of the earth's last city. Unfortunately, most of the planet is frozen, leaving society at the mercy of various steam-powered technologies. Being in charge isn't simple, and players must find balance between leading with their heart and their mind.

Since its release, "Frostpunk" has had three DLC packs that add additional content to the game, as well as several updates that included new content free of charge. With a sequel on the way, fans of management sims might want to go back and discover where the series started, even if it breaks their heart to do so.

  • Release Date: April 21, 2018 
  • Available On: PC, Xbox One, PS4
  • Genre: Strategy, survival
  • Game Modes: Single-player
  • Metacritic Score: 84 (PC), 87 (PS4), 84 (Xbox One)


"Dreams" isn't really a game, but a platform used to create games. The groundbreaking PS4 title was revolutionary when it released in 2020, and just as important now. Using "Dreams," players can create their own games, whether they be platformers, walking sims, or even just pieces of art. Fans have made incredible things with "Dreams," and it's difficult to accurately describe the creativity the title allows for. While "Dreams" isn't a creation engine per se, it does a good job at mimicking one, making complex dev tools accessible for creators of any age.

"Dreams" makes sense as a must-play title for fans of "Minecraft" because it prioritizes building, creativity, and exploration. While there is a lengthy tutorial to establish the mechanics of the game, "Dreams" ultimately lets players free with their own imaginations, able to create anything and everything they desire. 

  • Release Date: Feb. 14, 2020
  • Available On: PS4
  • Genre: Misc.
  • Game Modes: Single-player, online multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: 89

Craft the World

Have you ever wondered what it might be like to command a civilization of dwarves? "Craft the World" lets players play God with a group of dwarven citizens, sending them off to fight, explore, and mine resources to build their society. The 2-D sandbox style game is quite open-ended, and players have a lot of options in terms of customization for the dwarves' home. Of course, building a society is bound to capture the interest of other fantasy creatures. As players' dwarven encampment grows, other creatures will pay a visit – for good and evil reasons. There are many ways to deal with these intruders, including fighting them or trying to form a tenuous alliance. Ultimately, it's up to players to direct the dwarves and defend their home.

Oh, and did we mention players get to be a god? As a "divine being," players have access to all sorts of magic to help out their flock. While "Craft the World" looks a bit different than "Minecraft" stylistically, it packs a punch in terms of its crafting engine and open-ended gameplay.

  • Release Date: Nov. 24, 2014 
  • Available On: PC, iOS
  • Genre: Action, strategy
  • Game Modes: Single-player, multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: N/A


The ocean can be just as vast and terrifying as space. Combining vast bodies of water and alien planets together? Well, that's a recipe for horror. Okay, so "Subnautica" isn't a scary game, per se, but it does work to make players feel like an outsider on a strange world. Stuck on an alien planet, players have no other option except to descend into the briny depths and unravel the mystery of what happened to the barren planet.

"Subnautica" uses building mechanics and a crafting system to encourage players to explore the ocean. Rich plant and animal life in the alien tides help make crafting possible, and players learn to see the planet as their home. Well, sort of. There's still that big mystery of what happened to the place.

  • Release Date: Jan. 23, 2018 
  • Available On: PC, iOS, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Switch
  • Genre: Action adventure
  • Game Modes: Single-player
  • Metacritic Score: 87 (PC), 80 (PS4), 81 (Xbox One)


"Eco" doesn't bill itself as a game per se, but as a virtual ecosystem. Players can choose what level of development they want for their world, constructing massive cities or allowing for plenty of wide open spaces.

The developer's description of "Eco" notes that it's "built on a rich ecological simulation. All the data generated from the interaction of plants, animals, climate, and players can be searched and analyzed." In other words, "Eco" is part simulation game, part science experiment. It's meant to show that a small upset in one part of the ecosystem could have massive impacts on the rest of the world, and that everyone should work together to take care of the planet as best they can. Still, even if players aren't interested in the conservation-themed message, "Eco" is one of the most detailed, richly crafted simulation games available.

  • Release Date: Feb. 16, 2018
  • Available On: PC
  • Genre: Simulation
  • Game Modes: Single-player, multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: N/A (early access)

Lego Worlds

One reviewer on Steam called "Lego Worlds" "Lego Minecraft," and that description seems accurate enough. Players know what they're getting into when diving into "Lego Worlds." Possibly inspired by "Minecraft," the title allows players to similarly adventure through a blocky world, encountering creatures and constructing fortresses. Really, the world is the players' sandbox, and almost anything is possible. If you can dream it up, there are bricks to bring that idea to life.

"Lego Worlds" has several DLC packs to expand the fun, adding new creatures and tools to the base game, but many Steam reviews note that the game has ceased development and no longer receives support from developers. A game without support might be a turn off for some, but for others it's a quiet opportunity to build without interruptions in a true sandbox environment.

  • Release Date: March 7, 2017 
  • Available On: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
  • Genre: Action adventure, sandbox
  • Game Modes: Single-player, multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: 71 (PC), 66 (PS4), 59 (Switch), 69 (Xbox One)


"Ooblets" may draw players in with its cute cast of creatures (or Ooblets), but its customization tools and focus on improving and managing a farm makes it a solid choice for fans of construction in "Minecraft." The game's building tool is surprisingly detailed, with intricate customization options. Plus, there are some sweet dance offs between adorable Ooblets, and who doesn't love a dance off?

While growing Ooblets on the farm, players can also create relationships with townspeople and compete in daily challenges in order to earn new seeds and equipment. More than any of its other features, "Ooblets" has a massive amount of charm, which is enough to draw in many players. Its colorful, bright animation and friend-shaped critters can melt most hearts. "Ooblets," like a few games on this list, is currently in early access, but it receives regular updates and its developers are in communication with fans, hinting at more exciting news to come as the game approaches its full release.

  • Release Date: July 15, 2020 (early access)
  • Available On: PC, Xbox One
  • Genre: Indie, action-adventure
  • Game Modes: Single-player
  • Metacritic Score: N/A

Oxygen Not Included

"Oxygen Not Included" shares a lot of DNA with "Don't Starve," as it comes from the same developer, but it's an entirely different flavor than the latter game. Sure, "Oxygen Not Included" is also a survival game, and it also asks players to live through grueling conditions while finding resources to keep a character alive. However, this time, it's in space, and things are a lot more complicated.

While crafting and foraging still make appearances, players must additional worry about building a space base, managing pipe systems, enduring stress tests, and maintain proper oxygen levels. If all that sounds like a lot to keep up with, it's because it definitely is. Some players suggest watching others play "Oxygen Not Included" before taking the plunge yourself. After all, a little knowledge goes a long way.

  • Release Date: July 30, 2019
  • Available On: PC
  • Genre: Strategy, management
  • Game Modes: Single-player
  • Metacritic Score: 86


In "Astroneer," players are sent into the galaxy with one mission: explore and shape foreign planets in pursuit of knowledge. Astroneers have tools to terraform worlds, unearthing secret treasures and necessary items needed to survive.

There are seven planets in "Astroneer" and players can comb through every inch of them, both above and below ground. With the help of a handy tool, the earth melts away like butter, revealing caves and buried wonders beneath. Of course, there's also some building mechanics, and players can use resources to construct bases on various planets. Friends can get in on the fun via multiplayer, too, making the experience truly a collaborative effort. The mission? Each world has a mystery that players must uncover in attempt to discover a new energy source.

  • Release Date: Feb. 6, 2019 
  • Available On: PC, Xbox One, PS4, Switch
  • Genre: Action adventure, sandbox
  • Game Modes: Single-player, multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: 71 (PC), 73 (Xbox One)

Vintage Story

"Vintage Story" looks a lot like "Minecraft," but it also seeks to tackle a different scope of narrative. Instead of examining one finite moment, "Vintage Story" spans thousands of years, telling the story of the evolution of civilization. Players must deal with the minutiae of everyday life, like foraging and building shelter, but they also make decisions on how to guide society in terms of technological advancement and relations with the outside world.

Players can also enjoy playing "Vintage Story" multiple times, as it doesn't follow one linear plot. Playing the game again and again is something gamers will want to do in order to experience the diverse biomes and branching paths within the game. Similar to "Minecraft," "Vintage Story" has a variety of building and crafting elements players can use to advance their civilization and discover more about the world around them.

  • Release Date: Sep. 2016
  • Available On: PC
  • Genre: Survival
  • Game Modes: Single-player, multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: N/A

The Sims 4

Any gamer that enjoys building things and exploring social dynamics knows about "The Sims," and the latest entry in the series only improves upon the old formula established in previous titles. Even though we never should have been allowed to play "The Sims" as children, many gamers grew up manipulating the lives of everyone in SimNation.

"The Sims 4" has improved graphics, but it also has a more diverse collection of building tools and accessories for Sims to enjoy – if they have enough Simoleons, of course. Gamers can choose how they want to play "The Sims 4," too, focusing on building elaborate neighborhoods from the ground up or moving into prebuilt houses to watch the social drama unfold. Of course, it's also possible to do it all, playing through generations of Sims belonging to one family.

  • Release Date: Sep. 2, 2014 
  • Available On: PC, PS4, Xbox One
  • Genre: Life simulation
  • Game Modes: Single-player
  • Metacritic Score: 66 (Xbox One), 66 (PS4), 70 (PC)


"ARK: Survival Evolved" promises two things: hardcore survival tactics and dinosaurs. Players start out with nothing but their own bodies and quickly must learn to survive on an island named ARK. Of course, it's not easy to be naked in the wilderness, so players must quickly find ways to survive in the wilderness, eventually gaining enough power to escape the island and return home.

On the way to escaping, there's plenty to do, however, including training dinosaurs to serve as mounts and combat companions. In addition to dinosaurs, players can catch and tame a variety of animals to help make their homestead more functional. However, function isn't everything. Sometimes, you just need to have a pet pterodactyl.

  • Release Date: Aug. 29, 2017 
  • Available On: PS4, PC, Switch, iOS
  • Genre: Survival, action adventure
  • Game Modes: Single-player, online multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: 69 (PS4), 70 (PC), 69 (Xbox One), 29 (Switch)

Fallout 4

"Fallout 4" might not seem like a comparable title to "Minecraft," but its detail oriented building system makes it surprisingly similar. After a certain point in the post-apocalyptic adventure through the wasteland, players can begin to build settlements for stragglers across the wastes. While building isn't a necessary component of finishing the game, it provides hours of fun for those who enjoy crafting and making things.

Using materials found during their travels, players can craft together different defense mechanisms, luxury items, and decorative bits for their settlements, making life in the wasteland a little more bearable. DLC for "Fallout 4" includes even more recipes for fans of crafting and building to dig into.

  • Release Date: Nov. 10, 2015 
  • Available On: PS4, Xbox One, PC
  • Genre: Action adventure, first person shooter, crafting
  • Game Modes: Single-player
  • Metacritic Score: 87 (PS4), 84 (PC), 88 (Xbox One)

No Man's Sky

"No Man's Sky" often defies categorization. It's kind of a survival game – after all, players need to make it out in space – but it's also largely about what one can find out in the wild west of the galaxy. While it was a bit of a disappointment to fans when it first released, the team behind "No Man's Sky" has diligently worked over the years to improve players' experience time and time again. The game didn't blow up until years after its release, and it's almost an entirely different experience than it once was.

The basic premise of "No Man's Sky" is that players are a spacebound explorer traveling through a nearly endless galaxy of procedurally generated planets, each with its own creatures and alien inhabitants. Players can learn languages, craft items, fight hostile creatures, and uncover ancient civilizations as they sightsee around the galaxy. There's also a robust ship upgrade system to enjoy, and tons of customization options to obtain the coolest ride in the galaxy.

  • Release Date: Aug. 9, 2016 
  • Available On: PS4, PC, Xbox One
  • Genre: Action adventure, open world, exploration
  • Game Modes: Single-player
  • Metacritic Score: 71 (PS4), 77 (Xbox One), 69 (PC)


After an early tech demo for "Minecraft," a team of developers took the idea and ran with it. What emerged from that project is now known as "Terasology," a blocky, voxel styled game that's open to everyone. Any and all types of people have worked on "Terasology" over the years, including game designers, artists, and even "open source loving high schoolers." The game is free and moddable, with many official and fan made modules freely available for download.

Newbies to coding and building can even find mentors on the "Terasology" website who are ready to help teach the game to fresh faces. Best of all, "Terasology" is free and open source, making it a solid pick for the gamer wanting to save some cash while also enjoying a "Minecraft"- style building game.

  • Release Date: Sep. 30, 2013
  • Available On: PC
  • Genre: Crafting, action adventure
  • Game Modes: Single-player, online multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: N/A


"Unturned" shares visual similarities with "Minecraft," but it's actually a zombie apocalypse game. As one of the unturned survivors, players have to navigate through a world filled with danger. If zombies aren't looking to make you their next meal, starvation and malicious NPCs are close behind. Players must fight and escape the undead, sure, but "Unturned" is also a survival game, asking players to grow their own food, build shelter, and navigate an expansive world – all while being pursued relentlessly.

To make the experience even more fun, "Unturned" has a multiplayer option that allows players to team up with a squad of friends to survive the apocalypse. Together, it's even possible to build an extensive, impenetrable fortress and live the good life. If flying solo is more your speed, "Unturned" also has a variety of NPCs to get to know, and preexisting settlements to explore. 

  • Release Date: July 7, 2017
  • Available On: PC
  • Genre: Action adventure, survival
  • Game Modes: Single-player, online multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: N/A


"Valheim" caused a fuss when it unexpectedly took over "GTA 5" in the sales charts, surprising both gamers and the creators of the game. The title – which is still in early access – takes players to the time of Vikings and sets them loose to fight, survive, and make their fortunes. The world may be procedurally generated, but that doesn't mean that there's no strategy involved. Inspired by Norse myth, "Valheim" gives a nordic flair to the building and crafting found in many games like "Minecraft."

Players can explore, sure, but they should also take care to construct shelters for themselves in order to stay safe from the monsters that roam the wilderness. As players search the countryside and discover new ingredients, they can expand their crafting repertoire, learning how to build new things to improve their lives. Vikings also aren't limited by the harsh waves of the sea. In true ancient explorer fashion, players can use ships to sail across large bodies of water and discover new lands, just like the ancient warriors might have wanted.

  • Release Date: Feb. 2, 2021
  • Available On: PC
  • Genre: Action adventure, survival, crafting
  • Game Modes: Single-player, online multiplayer (1-10 players)
  • Metacritic Score: N/A

New World

"New World," the first game from Amazon's gaming studio, has had its troubles. Some players were banned for bizarre reasons, and others developed headaches over long wait times to even join a server and play the game. However, for players that want an intense, focused survival game, "New World" might just fit the bill. While some streamers have warned that it's not for casual gamers, "New World" still shares some DNA with "Minecraft," making it a welcome challenge for those wanting to take the next step in survival and crafting titles.

In "New World," players from all over the world can join together to explore and survive in a mystical world called Aeternum. Aeternum was once just a story, but now adventurers have found it at last. However, its mystical creatures and inherent magic won't make exploring there easy. Players have to fight, get stronger, and possibly collaborate with others in order to survive in this MMO with lots of untapped potential.

  • Release Date: Sep. 28, 2021
  • Available On: PC
  • Genre: Action adventure, survival, roleplaying
  • Game Modes: Single-player, MMO
  • Metacritic Score: 70

Card Life

"Card Life: Creative Survival" takes a more hands-on art approach by letting players hand draw almost every single element of the game. Whether crafting weapons, buildings, or characters, players can draw out what they want an object to look like, then watch as it's rendered in perfect 3D cardboard form. While there's an intricate building mode, "Card Life" has other draws, too, like a levelling combat system. Cardboard creatures roam the lands (including terrifying cardboard dinos) and slaying them earns players precious experience. Fight more creatures, level up, and become the most fearsome cardboard warrior in all the land.

"Card Life" doesn't have to be a solo experience, either. Players can team up to fight hordes of monsters, or create the perfect paper village. Whatever your play style, "Card Life" has a little something for everyone.

  • Release Date: Feb. 28, 2019
  • Available On: PC
  • Genre: Action adventure, sandbox
  • Game Modes: Single-player, online multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: N/A

Cube World

"Cube World" and "Minecraft" share similarities in many ways, including looks. Both games use a blocky, cube-based animation style, and both use exploration as a means of advancing the game. That being said, "Cube World" is much more of a traditional RPG than "Minecraft," allowing players to choose a combat class and specialize in certain types of weaponry. As players explore and fight, they unearth artifacts that will improve skills and make them more fearsome in battle.

There are plenty of non-combat things to do in "Cube World," too, though. It's possible to find and tame animals, which can then be ridden around the countryside, and move on to other worlds. Since everything is procedurally generated, the game never feels stale, and players can experience the fun of discovery again and again. "Cube World" can be played in single-player mode, or friends can team up to beset obstacles together.

  • Release Date: Sep. 30, 2019
  • Available On: PC
  • Genre: Sandbox, action adventure
  • Game Modes: Single-player, online co-op
  • Metacritic Score: N/A

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

"The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild" is one of the best-selling, most beloved games on the Nintendo Switch, and possibly in all of the "Zelda" franchise. While playing "Breath of the Wild" is surely a different experience than "Minecraft," its dedication to an open world exploration and crafting (in the form of cooking) will likely satisfy the same itch for "Minecraft" fans.

"Breath of the Wild" features a massive world, whose map is even larger than that of "Skyrim." There's no linear order players have to do things while they explore the world, and dungeons can be completed in any order. The level of flexibility in "Breath of the Wild" makes it stand out from many other titles on this list, and makes it worth checking out, no matter what your typical gaming genre.

  • Release Date: March 3, 2017
  • Available On: Switch
  • Genre: Action adventure, open world
  • Game Modes: Single-player
  • Metacritic Score: 97

Mario Maker 2

"Mario Maker 2" might not seem like an obvious choice for a list of games similar to "Minecraft," but it makes a lot of sense once you think about it. After all, both titles are about creating things, in a way, and both stress collaboration and celebration of others' work. In "Mario Maker 2," players are tasked with the difficult endeavor of building levels similar to the many "Super Mario Bros." games fans might be familiar with. That may sound easy, but players have taken level creation to devious heights. Fans have made a whole swath of devious levels to confound even the most skilled "Mario" superstar.

After constructing their own levels, players can upload their creations for others to enjoy. The end result is a nearly limitless supply of "Mario Bros." levels to enjoy. If building things and coming up with devilish tricks is your favorite part of "Minecraft," "Mario Maker 2" might earn a spot on your to-play list.

  • Release Date: June 28, 2019
  • Available On: Switch
  • Genre: Action, platformer
  • Game Modes: Single-player, local multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: 88


Sometimes a game does exactly what it promises in its title. "Forager" fulfills its promise, allowing players to, well, forage for materials and food while pursuing goals that they set themselves. As an open world title, "Forager" doesn't tell players what to do directly, but it does offer them different paths to enjoy. For example, some players might want to become a gentle farmer, working the land to grow crops. Others might want to be a powerful merchant, selling goods at a high markup. Players might also choose to become builders, or adventurers. There are many possibilities and no right or wrong path.

One reviewer described "Forager" as "Factorio without conveyor belts, Stardew Valley without NPC relations, and Zelda without difficulty balance." It's addictive gameplay style makes it easy to enjoy and begin, but difficult to fully master, skyrocketing the replay value of the game.

  • Release Date: April 18, 2019 
  • Available On: PC
  • Genre: Action adventure
  • Game Modes: Single-player
  • Metacritic Score: 78 (PC and Switch)

Block Story

"Block Story" is the digital equivalent of someone giving players a limitless box of Lego and saying, "Have fun." Players' imagination is the only limit in this title, but that doesn't mean the game doesn't have structure. There is a specific set of quests players can choose to go on, which lead them across the world to all manner of different biomes in search of loot, creatures, and fun.

Ultimately, players get to make the decision whether to be a gallivanting hero or a humble builder. There's plenty of fighting to do, too, with seven distinct bosses and over 100 creatures to meet, tame, and manipulate. Perhaps the best part of "Block Story" is its price tag. For just a few dollars, players can enjoy the experience on their PC. Plus, who doesn't want to ride a dragon? 

  • Release Date: Dec. 10, 2015
  • Available On: PC
  • Genre: Building
  • Game Modes: Single-player
  • Metacritic Score: N/A


"Delver" looks a lot like "Minecraft" at first glance, but it has a completely different playstyle, billing itself first and foremost as a roguelike. On a quest to find the Yithidian Orb, players must journey through a series of increasingly difficult dungeons, each with their own traps, monsters, and challenges. The Steam description for "Delver" boasts that the game doesn't features a levelling system, and that skills are the only thing that will get players through the dungeons. Practice makes perfect, and players will truly have to build a diverse set of talents to survive.

Each dungeon in "Delver" is procedurally generated, meaning that no two runs will be the same. Players will have to adapt to each combination of traps, each new set of enemies, and each punishing run, all in search of a mysterious orb they might never be able to reach.

  • Release Date: Feb. 1, 2018
  • Available On: PC
  • Genre: Roguelike
  • Game Modes: Single-player
  • Metacritic Score: N/A

Junk Jack

"Junk Jack" bills itself as a "relaxing" sandbox game that's all about making the world a better place. In an effort to improve their home world, players must travel to different planets and find new things to bring home. Perhaps your home needs new creatures to populate the earth, or maybe you're in search of a rare material that can only be found on an alien planet.

There are no big quests in "Junk Jack," and no specific goals players have to complete. Instead, the game is player-guided. Players that don't want to engage in much combat simply don't have to. Those that want to focus on building up one small corner of the world are free to do that. For players that love options and the freedom to choose what sort of game they'd like to enjoy, "Junk Jack" is worth checking out.

  • Release Date: Nov. 7, 2011 (iOS)
  • Available On: PC, iOS, Switch
  • Genre: Action adventure, sandbox
  • Game Modes: single-player, cross platform multiplayer
  • Metacritic Score: 85 (iOS)

The Flame in the Flood

Playing "Minecraft" can be a lonely experience, especially if one doesn't have pals to build with. "The Flame in the Flood" captures a similar lonely feeling, but mixes that despair with optimism and fierce survival gameplay. In "The Flame in the Flood," players take control of a nameless protagonist who must sail down the river on a pieced together raft in order to reach safety and community. The journey is arduous, filled with poisonous snakes, illnesses, exposure, and wild animals. There are tender moments, too, though, like scenes where the protagonist gets to bond with their canine companion.

Unlike some survival games, "Flame in the Flood" has a clear ending, which might be a bonus for some players who want a more linear experience. By crafting and discovering more recipes for tools, food, and shelter, players can safely navigate the dangerous post-apocalyptic world and (hopefully) find their new home.

  • Release Date: Feb. 24, 2016 
  • Available On: PC, Xbox One, PS4, Switch
  • Genre: Survival, action adventure
  • Game Modes: Single-player
  • Metacritic Score: 73 (PC), 76 (PS4), 74 (Xbox One), 75 (Switch)