Pride of Nations is a turn-based strategy game set between 1850 and 1920, i.e. the time of colonies. The player takes the role of one of eight nations and tries to become (respectively stay in the case of Great Britain) the leading nation. The success is measured with prestige points which can be earned on various areas, e.g. by holding colonies or having a functioning train network.
The gameplay takes place on the world map and various menu screens in which the player takes care of all important decisions and adjusts his nation, e.g. diplomacy, economy, research or military. The latter is, similar to the previous AGEOD games, complex: the player can assemble the army with many different units and generals with various abilities. Many factors are taken into account when the games calculates the battles, e.g. morale, exhaustion and the weather - consequently detailed are the orders the player can give.
One turn stands for 15 days, meaning the campaign lasts 1680 turns. For a shorter experience there are four military campaigns available which focus only on the areas of fighting; the rest of the map is unavailable: The Indian riot of 1857, France against Austria from 1859, the Boer War from 1899 and the war between Russia and Japan in 1904.