The games industry spans every genre and interest so that all needs are catered for. Be it an indie game on Steam or a Triple A title, there’s nowhere games can’t go, especially equestrianism, making it essential to know things like the best horse games to play.
While most people probably never thought they’d need to know about the best job simulators on the Microsoft or PlayStation Stores, the industry has grown to a point where there’s almost too much choice. Two decades ago, we would never have thought that we’d need a list of the best horse games to help us avoid the truly awful ones, but we’re long past the days of Barbie Riding Club.
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The Ten Best Horse Games Anyone Can Play
In the list below, we’ve highlighted what we believe are the ten best horse games available to play right now. They’re not listed in any particular order because each one has its own merits, as should be clear from their descriptions.
1) Star Stable Online
Available on web browsers, Android, iOS, PC, and Mac from the official website.
Star Stable Online is the ultimate horse girl game. At least, it claims to be. It’s an online title that boasts a whopping 6,000 quests to complete and 300 unique horses to master. This is more content than most modern MMOs have, but it doesn’t stop there.
In Star Stable Online, players get to live out their best horse girl life. Outside of the main story, collectibles, and level grinding, players can customize their character and horse and just head out for a ride. The game has all the trappings of a hardcore MMO for those who want to engage with that part of it, but it’s also fine with anyone taking hours to spend time with their horses relaxing, brushing, heading out on a long ride, or talking about their deepest, darkest secrets.
Of course, it doesn’t end there because the game’s community of millions of players is also constantly exploring and bumping into each other. The game is a great place to meet like-minded horse lovers and hang out or complete daring adventures to save the world, all held together by their love for their horses.
2) Star Equestrian
Available on PC, Android, and iOS from the official website.
Star Equestrian is a horse game MMO that’s still in active development at the time of writing, but all players report that it’s engrossing, addictive enough for them to play daily, and has massive scope for growth. Anyone hoping to get in on the ground floor of what will be a huge horse game hit should jump in as soon as possible.
There are, of course, certain elements of free-to-play games that are expected in Star Equestrian, such as microtransactions for currency. However, the game’s got enough content for players to try to keep on top of each day that there’s no need to take the dive into spending money unless there’s a particular item a player is taken with.
What impresses us the most about this game, in particular, is the ranch building aspect. Not only do payers get to ride their horses, care for them, and customize both them and their character, they get to build a home where they can all live. Breeding was recently added to the game, opening up a whole new world for players to get sucked into, and so much more is on the way in a game that feels polished but is still very much in early access.
3) Red Dead Redemption 2 & Red Dead Online
Available on PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S.
A far cry from the cutest horse games out there, Red Dead Redemption 2 and Red Dead Online are two incredible games that have phenomenal horses and associated mechanics. Rockstar Games put in a lot of work to ensure that the horses feel real in both the single player adventure and the MMO portion that initially launched alongside it.
Today, it’s possible to get Read Dead Online as a standalone title, so those looking for a new horse game addiction can choose between the gritty, heartwrenching story of Arthur in Red Dead Redemption 2 or the massive open world and daily quest grind of Red Dead Online.
We recommend picking up the base game, playing through the story, and mastering the horse mechanics there before heading into the online world. There’s a career to be made by anyone who loves heading out, catching and taming horses, and selling them for a profit. It’s possible to spend hundreds of hours with these majestic beasts across both these titles, and there’s honestly no side activity that even comes close to being as good because of how well-made every horse is.
4) Windstorm: An Unexpected Arrival
Available on PC, PS4, and Nintendo Switch from the official website.
Windstorm: An Unexpected Arrival is based on the movie Windstorm 4: Ari’s Arrival. The game follows the tale of a horse, Windstorm, who is completely and utterly traumatized after surviving a fire. No one can handle him, and his mind is riddled with anxiety over what he’s lived through. That is until Ari arrives.
Once players pick up control of Ari and Windstorm, they’ll follow a story that sees both characters help each other heal their scars through a shared bond over trauma and how to move past it. The horse mechanics are pretty good in this one, though it does suffer from some bugs and glitches that can distract from the story being told.
What makes the title stand out to most is the fact that it’s a true open world horse game. Players can move between quests and exploration without a loading screen and feel as though they’re making a difference as they tick quests off around the world. This sells the game for us, and we can’t wait to get the platinum trophy on PS4.
5) The Sims 4: Horse Ranch
Available on PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S from the official website.
The Sims 4: Horse Ranch is possibly the most highly anticipated DLC pack for The Sims 4 ever. It does exactly what players might expect, adding horse ranching mechanics into the world of The Sims for them to play around with and master.
This expansion is so much more than ranch building. Players can craft and breed horses and other animals and really invest in their Sims’ horse life. With this expansion, it’s easy to leave the trappings of the city behind and start fresh outdoors, where nothing matters but the bond between horse and Sim. On release, fans couldn’t get enough of this expansion, so it’s very much worth playing, and expecting more of the same in the future.
6) My Riding Stables: Life With Horses
Available on PC via Steam, Nintendo Switch, and PS4.
Sometimes, a game becomes a classic for a reason. First released in 2014, My Riding Stables: Life With Horses provides players with everything they could ever want from a horse game. Players step into Mill Creek to discover a riding stable in ruin. The place has been left to rot, and restoring them and making them profitable again will be tough.
However, that’s exactly what players must do, and love the course of the game’s story, they’ll slowly repair the stables, adding more horses for customers to ride, and start making money by breeding and selling their horses.
No horse game is complete without some actual riding, though, and My Riding Stables: Life With Horses has plenty. There are races to win and lots of competitions to enter, but there’s also a lot of opportunity for downtime. Brushing, hanging out, and the quieter side of horse life that isn’t portrayed as much in modern horse games.
7) The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom
Available on Nintendo Switch.
While horses aren’t the main focus of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, the game has a strong bit of horse game side content that crazy players can ignore and horse lovers can dive into. The game itself is an absolute marvel and well worth experiencing for anyone with a Nintendo Switch. It’s the strongest open world game we’ve played in years, and nothing comes close to beating it.
Protagonist Link has their own horse, Epona, who they can ride across Hyrule while exploring and battling the monsters occupying it. There are also wild horses for Link to tame, and those horses can be stored at the stables dotted around Hyrule’s map.
Players earn points for each horse they store, and certain horses are better than others, so it pays to swap them around once a superior ride has been tamed. There’s even a golden horse for players to claim if they’re feeling brave, but it takes guts. This game’s horses are great because they make exploring Hyrule much more manageable. Tears of the Kingdom is a fantastic distraction for those who want a horse game but are sick of traditional horse games.
8) The Ranch of Rivershine
Available on PC via Steam.
While keeping an eye out for the best horse games around, we’ve found dozens of conversations where fans have told those looking for a new horse game addiction about The Ranch of Rivershine. While the game is in early access, it’s got everything horse lovers could possibly want from a game, and it’s only getting better each year.
The game has so much to sink time into, from horse breeding, raising, and training to village life simulation and some elements of ranch management. There’s a vet to gather ingredients for so everyone can understand mysterious equine illnesses and a fashion boutique store for horse-loving fashionistas.
The game is still rough around the edges, there’s no doubt about it, but this is a title anyone can pick up and lose themselves in. We love the look of the statistics that can be tracked and are suckers for any sort of game that combines its core themes with management simulation mechanics.
9) Petz Horsez 2
Available for PS2, Nintendo Wii, and PC via Steam.
For horse game fans who want a reliable title that’s been enabling horse lovers to enjoy their hobby in video game form for almost two decades, there’s no need to look any further than Petz Horsez 2. This game was originally released for the PS2 and made it to the Nintendo Wii before also getting a Steam entry. We recommend playing the Steam version because it’s the most accessible.
The game is a horse ranch simulator where players raise horses from foals and must earn money to buy more and eventually fill up their ranch. One of the most surprising parts of the game is that it has multiple endings based on choices players make as they play. Very few horse games have this, so we’re glad that at least one does.
The only downside is that, of course, this is an old game. It’s been around since 2007 and hasn’t aged massively well. But still, it’s a horse game that can deliver a hit of nostalgia or act as someone’s gateway into the genre if they’re not used to playing games on PC and want something on the old, reliable Nintendo Wii or PS2. For us, it has to be those retro consoles we grew up playing it on or nothing.
10) Rival Stars Horse Racing: Desktop Edition
Available on Android, iOS as mobile versions, and PC via Steam.
Rival Stars Horse Racing is a game all horse lovers talk about, regardless of whether it’s the mobile or desktop version. The game is mostly about racing the horses players collect, but also features an in-depth breeding system in which players must try to get the best horse possible for their races.
All players agree that the mobile version is fine, but this game really shines with the Desktop Edition because PCs pack that extra power. It’s also one of the best racing-focused horse games out there that manages to retain at least some of the elements of horse life that make these games so interesting.
Without the breeding mechanic, this game would almost certainly pass us by. Even if all players want to do is race, though, that’s here for them to jump into. The game requires mastery of control over each horse in order to win, and that’s easier said than done.