Welcome to Insert Coin's index of video game genres.

The following is a list of game genres, terms used to collectively describe groups of games based on prominent characteristics common to those games. Some of these terms have been superceded by others, some are interchangeable or mean subtly different things in different contexts.

It should be noted that not every video game fits into a universally recognised genre. Recently an increasing number of games are featuring elements from several genres. It should also be noted that if a popular genre has 2D and 3D variants, or console and computer variants, these are often treated as seperate genres in practice (but aren't listed seperately below for the sake of clarity).

Umbrella terms within each genre group are in bold. Genre names may be followed by (alternate names) and (an example game).

The major genres

  • Shooting
  • Fighting
  • Driving
  • Platform
  • Simulation
  • Adventure
  • Role-Playing
  • Strategy
  • Sports
  • Puzzle
  • Parlour Games



*These days the term 'beat-'em-up' is usually used to refer to games where player character(s) fight against many A.I. opponents. Games which involve fights between two characters (usually of three rounds) are called 'fighting games'.

**Beat-'em-up with melee weapons.


Not all driving games are racing games. Some focus on stunts, tasks, combat, or some combination thereof.



'Simulation' games are a broad church, as a large number of games try to simulate a real-life (or hypothetical) situation. The 'simulation' tag these days indicates that the developers have attempted to honour realism to the full extent that the available technology allows.


* - No longer used. refers to 8-bit era adventure platform games.

** - Somewhat obsolete. Was used to distinguish early adventure games with graphics from text adventures.

*** - Obsolete term. Refers to FMV games where watching the movies was more important than the gameplay.


* - Games based on the original Rogue template and/or source. Basic ASCII-text dungeon crawls.




Parlour Games

(video game versions of card games, gambling, slot machines, etc.)


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Please /msg Insert Coin if you spot an omission, mistake, or link that goes nowhere in this list.

This list originally generated by fondue.
This list has been edited amib.

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