video game genres

Video game genres: How to choose the right one for your project

Video game genres are the backbone of a game’s identity. They shape unique gameplay mechanics and inspire the charming heroes, roguish villains, and purposeful quests that make up iconic video games. Game genres also define the backstories and appearance of popular video game characters.

At Voice123 – where you’ll find the iconic video game voice actors – we’ll discuss what are video game genres and explore a complete video game genres list to inspire your next project.

It’s time to power up gaming experiences!

What are video game genres?

video game genres

Video game genres are the categories that classify video games based on features like gameplay, interaction, challenges, and objectives to help players identify the types of games they’re interested in and assist developers when creating new games. They also affect how you hire voice actors because of the constant evolution of gaming technology. Game genres can merge or evolve to create entirely new subgenres. For example, survival and action game genres merged into battle royale video games like Fortnite. And first-person shooters like Call of Duty are a subgenre of action games.

Here’s a complete breakdown of the video game genres list.

Video game genres list

1. Action

Action games require quick reflexes, fast-paced gameplay, and intense action with combat, shooting, or fighting like God of War and Final Fantasy

  • First-person shooter games like Borderlands allow players to experience the game from their chosen character’s perspective.
  • Survival games like Valheim feature an environment where players must gather resources, think quickly, and make tough decisions.

2. Adventure

The adventure video game genre features players exploring exciting worlds and environments. Popular adventure games include the Legend of Zelda and Tomb Raider

  • Western adventure games are set in the Wild West, and players can become cowboys or outlaws like Red Dead Redemption.
  • Point-and-click adventure games involve players interacting with objects and characters in a virtual world like Monkey Island.

3. Action-Adventure 

This game genre combines action elements like combat with exploration and puzzle-solving to create challenging environments for players like Assassin’s Creed Valhalla

  • Open-world games like Star Wars feature large, expansive game worlds for players to explore and play.
  • Survival horror games put players in terrifying situations where they must fight and survive against enemies, like in Silent Hill 2.

4. Puzzle

A puzzle video game genre challenges players’ problem-solving skills with riddles, brainteasers, and challenges. In Portal 2, players can manipulate space and time. 

  • Logical puzzle games require players to use logic and reasoning to solve puzzles. The Witness has over 500 challenging puzzles.
  • Hidden object puzzle games are when players find specific items hidden in a cluttered scene like Mystery Case Files.

5. Role-Playing

Role-playing video games (RPGs) allow players to control a character in an immersive world. In Batman Arkham, players fight criminals as Batman in Gotham City. 

  • Action RPG combines action with RPG mechanics. In Dark Souls, players must survive in a harsh, unforgiving world.
  • Tactical RPG requires players to strategize and make decisions in turn-based combat like Final Fantasy Tactics.

6. Simulation

Simulation replicates real-world activities or situations about business, life, or fantasy. In Stardew Valley, players enter a charming rural setting where they can cultivate crops, raise animals, and build farms. 

  • Racing simulators like Gran Turismo provide a realistic driving experience with accurate car and track simulations.
  • City building simulators like SimCity let players design and manage their cities with zoning, infrastructure, and budget.

7. Strategy 

Strategy games demand critical thinking, decision-making skills, resource management, and tactical combat in games like Total War: Three Kingdoms

  • Turn-based strategy (TBS) games allow players to plan and lead missions. In XCOM 2, players fight an alien invasion.
  • Real-time strategy (RTS) games like StarCraft II require quick decision-making and multitasking skills.

8. Sports

Sports game genres simulate real-world team sports events with a natural match vibe, delivering adrenaline-pumping experiences like FIFA 22’s exciting soccer matches. 

  • Racing games like Forza Horizon 5 immerse players in high-speed experiences as they race against opponents.
  • Fighting games like Street Fighter V allows players to engage in hand-to-hand combat against rivals.

9. MMO (Massively Multiplayer Online)

MMO games allow thousands of players to interact with each other, creating an immersive gaming experience. Games like Final Fantasy XIV have online player communities. 

  • Fantasy games allow players to create and customize their characters in mythical worlds, such as World of Warcraft.
  • Sandbox video games create a virtual world where players can explore, build, and interact with each other, like Minecraft.

10. Platformer video game genres

Platformer video game genres involve navigating a character through various obstacles and puzzles. Games like Super Mario often require precise control and timing.

  • Side-scrolling games allow players to move across a 2D landscape by jumping, running, and climbing like Donkey Kong.
  • Shooter platformers like Metal Slug combine platforming and shooting elements, creating action-packed gameplay.

Here’s how this video game genres list can inspire voice over projects.

Voice over projects inspired by video game genres

video game genres

If you’re looking for gaming inspiration for your next video project, consider your project’s theme and which game genre would suit your project’s script. For example, use an action setting like God of War for an energy drink commercial. Next, examine audience preferences, ages, and gaming habits. A simulation genre like The Sims can promote vacation packages to office workers. Then, analyze your message to capture the right emotional appeal, like a FIFA setting for athletic health products. Finally, choose a dynamic voice from Voice123 to enhance the theme’s atmosphere. Use Liam Neeson’s (aka James’) style for an inspiring radio ad.

Final thoughts on video game genres 

And that’s a wrap on the best video game genres list. Level up your gaming creativity with a video game genre that can also inspire voice over projects. Whether it’s fast-paced action game genres or the captivating narratives of role-playing games. 

When you’re ready to create a gaming masterpiece, find the best voice actors from the incredible vocal talent on Voice123 or hire our professional Managed Services to handle the entire project.

So, grab your controller because it’s your turn to make gaming history!


How many video game genres are there?

There are 10 main video game genres, each with multiple subgenres and hybrids.

What are the top 3 game genres?

The top 3 game genres are action, adventure, and RPG (role-play games).

What is the longest game genre?

The RPG (role-playing games) genre contains some of the longest video games, like Legend of Zelda and Baldur’s Gate.

What defines a video game genre?

A video game genre is defined by the game’s mechanics, gameplay, thematic elements, player experiences, the challenges they present, and player engagement.


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