The game uses an epidemic model with a complex and realistic set of variables to simulate the spread and severity of the plague.
Plague Inc. has been downloaded over 85 million times and was positively received by critics. It was a runner up in the IGN Game of the Year 2012 awards for 'Overall Best Strategy Game'. The game continues to have an active community and is regularly updated.
In 2017, the developer released a physical board game based on Plague Inc. titled Plague Inc.: The Board Game. In December 2018, the studio released Rebel Inc., a follow-up game with a political theme.