19 Jun 2019 19:37:22
Top 10 Strategy Games

I have always loved a good strategy game, sometimes even a not-so-good one! Even as long ago as when I had a Spectrum 48k (yes they really did only have 48kb memory!) strategy games were always up there as my chosen games. The only problem is, if you are a console gamer, the number of good strategy games to choose from is extremely limited, you really need a PC. There are so many on PC that I have barely scratched the surface in terms of playing them, but these are my top 10 that I have tried:

10. Northgard

A real-time strategy (RTS) game based on Vikings. This is one is better as a multiplayer, though you can play solo, it is nothing like as good to play. I do believe that, if I had played more than a quick couple of games on it, that it would likely move up a place or two in the list.

9. Men Of War Series

It is almost a simulation in a lot of respects, so much detail has gone into it and it has spawned a number of sequels set in various time periods. The original World War II game is still the best version of this RTS though, in my opinion. Extremely details and tries to stick faithfully to real world at the time.

8. Gary Grigsby's War In The East Series

An epic turn-based WWII game that takes strategy to a whole new level. It is not something you can just pick up and play. It is incredibly complicated and difficult, so it is not for everyone. If you find all other strategy games lack depth and difficulty, then this is the game for you. There are follow ups to try as well, such as War In The West, but the first one is the definitive one.

7. Crusader Kings Series

Paradox Games have established themselves as one of the best houses for making strategy games out there. Not only have their games improved over time, but they also continually improve them for years after their release. I guess this is best described as an RTS, though you can alter the speed of gameplay to give you time to perform actions when needed or speed up to miss out boring bits while you wait for a character to grow to a useful age. The first iteration is very simple (comparatively) and a good way to get into Paradox Games, because they are not simple pick up and play games. They do take a bit of learning to understand exactly how they work and they are not games you can play in 10 minutes. But then no good strategy game is quick! Crusader Kings II is the one to play, though it will take some time to really get the hang of.

6. Warhammer 40K: Dawn Of War

I want to make it clear right from the start, I am only referring to Dawn Of War, not the two sequels which are nowhere near as good. Avoid the sequels and stick to this one, it is a very decent RTS. It does lack a little in terms of you can only play as Space Marines and the opposing forces are not as varied as I would have liked, but it is an absorbing game which could easily see you lose hours on.

5. Galactic Civilization III

The 3rd in the series is clearly the best version, with no lack of variety in the spaceships you can deploy, as you can even make your own designs if you so choose. It is very much based on Sid Meier's Civ series but in space, but without taking into account the extra dimension available to the play. Your map is a flat surface, which does leave it a little lacking but easier to follow. An enjoyable turn-based game.

4. Hearts Of Iron Series

Another of the Paradox strategies that test you, but this one is set in WWII when you can take control of any nation from the time and lead it during the war. Like all Paradox titles, you can use politics, diplomacy and warfare to achieve your vision but it is complex and requires real skill and it is often helpful to have knowledge of the time as well. They call their games 'Grand Strategy' and I think that is a very good description, as they encompass aspects most other games forget about or avoid.

3. Panzer Corps

A remake and update of the classic Panzer General turn-based game that I played to death on the original Playstation. Often a new version misses what made the original so good, but this one has genuinely improved on the original by a significant amount. It is nothing like as complicated as the other WW2 games in this list, but no less fun for that. A classic of the genre of turn-based hex-tiled games.

2. Sid Meier's Civilization Series

I really cannot decide which version of this game is the best, I have been a fan since the original one was recommended to me many years ago. I think it was on the Amiga, if I remember correctly. It has become the basis of so many games and yet, somehow, they keep bringing a new, fresh version out every few years which provides a different gaming experience, while still keeping the original feel to it. I can happily pick up and play any version of the game and while away hours without noticing.

1. Total War Series

This series takes the title because it has a mix of turn-based strategy and RTS all in one package, though the RTS is entirely optional and you can just play it as a turn-based game if you choose. However the RTS elements, which are just the battles, as so good it would be a shame not to play them. I have yet to play all of the versions but, of those I have played, Warhammer and Shogun are my favourites and stand out as amongst the best games ever made, in my opinion.

1.) 20 Jun 2019
20 Jun 2019 16:19:24
Some really big name games missing from that list! Command and Conquer, Warcraft, Supreme Commander, Sins of a Solar Empire and Starcraft to name a few.

Also, Ed Dawn of War has 4 available factions, with the Orcs being the strongest of the lot. If you are strictly referring to the campaign then fair enough, but I personally would rank the expansion "Dark Crusade" above DoW, as it offers a much stronger campaign(you can play as all factions), as well as including new troops and vehicles, while also adding the mighty undead Necrons, as well as the technologically superior Tau Empire.

Just my opinion of course, it'd be very boring if we all had the same opinions.

{Ed001's Note - there is a lot missing and yes I meant the campaign.}

2.) 23 Jun 2019
23 Jun 2019 22:39:01
I can't believe I forgot about Company of Heroes, that's a bloody fantastic game. And even 13 years after its release, the graphics still hold up pretty well.