7 Games Like Top Gun: Maverick

If you’re deep within the Danger Zone, these are the games you should probably play.

Top Gun: Maverick soared over the Memorial Day weekend. The legacyquel was a big hit, making $160 million domestic and taking the Memorial Day opening record. It’s the biggest opening weekend of Tom Cruise’s lengthy career and word-of-mouth points to a film that’s going to continue doing well at the box office.

Top Gun: Maverick brings back Cruise as Navy pilot Pete “Maverick” Mitchell, as the aging hotshot needs to train a new group of elite pilots. That group of pilots includes Bradley “Rooster” Bradshaw, the son of Maverick’s dead wingman “Goose” Bradshaw. Can Maverick step into a leadership role and give these young pilots the expertise needed to attack a protected uranium enrichment plant? Top Gun: Maverick is a whole dose of speed and machismo that’s proving to be a crowd-pleaser worldwide.

After feeling the pinpoint high of the aerial dogfights and homoerotic casual sports of the film, you might want to check out these games.

Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown

This is one of the two games with officially-licensed Top Gun: Maverick content. Ace Combat 7 is the latest entry in the excellent flight combat action series. The franchise has always benefited from a heightened tone, a host of combat scenarios, and a fantastic sense of speed. In addition to the awesome core game, Ace Combat 7 also offers a ton of downloadable content. The latest release is the new Top Gun Maverick Aircraft Set, which adds six planes straight from the film, like the prototype DarkStar jet or the classic F-14A Tomcat.

You can pick it up on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, or PC. The game is even 80% off ($11.99) until June 9, 2022, meaning you can get in for cheap. On PS4 and PC, you can grab the Maverick Set for another $19.99, while Xbox has a new bundle that includes the base game and the Maverick Set for $29.99.

Project Wingman

Project Wingman is an indie project inspired by a deep, deep love for Ace Combat. It’s also a combat flight action game, but it offers more customization for the available planes and even stronger B-movie energy. It also has Conquest Mode, an open-ended experience that’ll keep you playing for a long time. Ace Combat 7 is the full AAA experience, but Project Wingman is constantly growing and improving. So while it lags behind a bit, it’s still a great game and the standard price tag is much lower at $24.99.

Project Wingman is only available on PC at the moment.

Microsoft Flight Simulator

This is the other title that has officially-licensed models from Top Gun: Maverick. While Ace Combat 7 and Project Wingman are combat-focused, Microsoft Flight Simulator is more about the sensation and feel of flying. It allows you to soar across a realistic recreation of the world in a wide variety of aircraft. The free Top Gun: Maverick expansion adds the F/A-18E Super Hornet as one of those aircraft, alongside three training missions that task you with mastering difficult flight maneuvers.

Microsoft Flight Simulator is entirely free with Xbox or PC Game Pass for Xbox Series or Windows. Assuming you already subscribe to Game Pass, this is your cheapest method of entry. If you want to buy it, it is available on Xbox Series X/S, Windows, or Steam for $59.99.

Star Wars: Squadrons

Top Gun: Maverick works its way up to a climactic action scene that certainly recalls another major cinematic franchise. If you want to relive similar moments in flight crews of real players, then your best option is Star Wars: Squadrons. This 2020 release was all about  space dogfighting action between factions in the Star Wars universe. And while it lacks a perfect recreation of the classic Trench Run, it does boast a few similar encounters. If you can find a match with a full group of players, it’s one of the better places to dogfight online.

Star Wars: Squadrons is available on PC (Steam, Epic), PS4, or Xbox One for $39.99.

Windjammers 2

There’s nothing that’s more Top Gun than shirtless, sweaty dudes partaking in competitive sports on the beach. The first film offered beach volleyball, while the sequel chooses the more classic American pastime of football. (Still on the beach and shirtless though!) Windjammers 2 doesn’t have much in the way of shirtless competitors, but it does have beachside arenas. It’s also a great arcade sports game in an era where they’re pretty rare.

Windjammers 2 is available on PC, Xbox One (Game Pass), PS4, and Nintendo Switch for $19.99. If you have the more modern Xbox Series or PS5, it’s available via Backward Compatibility on both platforms.

Captain Tsubasa: Rise of New Champions

If you’re more focused on the hot-blooded competition between Bradley “Rooster” Bradshaw and his rival Jake “Hangman” Seresin, then we have to head in a different direction. These gentlemen fight it out on the beach and in the skies, simply not able to see eye-to-eye. So let’s try a different type of football that still has that fire.

Captain Tsubasa: Rise of New Champions is based on the manga and anime of the same name, with striker Tsubasa Oozora leading his various teams to victory on the soccer field. The game features dudes getting heated enough that their eyes literally burn with inner fire. It also boasts two story modes, with one showing Tsubasa’s rise and rivalries, while the other mode allows you to craft your own character and take them to the top.

Captain Tsubasa: Rise of New Champions is available on PC, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch.

Yakuza Kiwami, Yakuza Kiwami 2, and Yakuza: Like a Dragon

Sometimes, you just need to experience a story about dudes being bros and rivals. A story of manly men, doing manly men things and putting their lives on the line. A story of bros getting shirtless and butting heads against one another. That’s part of what Top Gun: Maverick is about, and no game series quite fulfills this role like Yakuza.

For the full tension between rivals, you probably want to play Yakuza Kiwami or Yakuza Kiwami 2. Kiwami is available on PC, PS4, Xbox One, and Xbox Series. It’s also playable on PS5 via backward compatibility. Kiwami 2 is likewise available on PC, PS4, Xbox One, and Xbox Series. Finally, if you want the full Top Gun: Maverick feeling of the veteran coming back to help the new guy, try out Yakuza: Like a Dragon. It’s available on PC, PS4/PS5, Xbox One/Series. The latter iteration is available on Xbox Game Pass, so if you’re already subscribed, it’s the cheapest way in!