Why it's good to be a PC Gamer in '08: RTS

Many gamers say that the PC was made for RTS, or that RTS was made for the PC. Either way you look at it, the keyboard/mouse combo coincide with the RTS genre in such a fluid manner that many gamers are still perplexed seeing strategy games played on consoles.

Plenty of RTS series have become very popular over the years on the PC; Age of Empires, Warcraft, Civilization, Galactic Civilizations, just to name a few. With all this mumbo jumbo about PC gaming being a thing of the past, and that no more good games are being developed for it, I am here to differ. PC gaming is as strong as ever, and the lineup for 2008 is going to make every PC gamer very happy. Let’s take a look at what RTS games we can expect to get our hands on this year.

Sins of a Solar Empire: Ironclad Games developed a game that wanted to incorporate real-time strategy with extensive 4X strategy elements. Taking place in space, the player’s playing field features a 2D web of 3D planets and other 3D celestial objects clustered around one or more stars. Players can view entire solar systems, then zoom in to their planets and even individual fleets, starships, and fighters, similar to the strategic zoom ala Supreme Commander.

Reasons why you should pick this up:

Extensive 4X strategy gameplay that makes you feel like you are really the commander of a whole race across the spans of the galaxy.

Explore and conquer entire galaxies that include hundreds of planets, asteroid belts, radiant stars and more.

"Iron Engine" is new technology that allows the game to handle very large differences in size, scale and distance.

sins of a solar empire

Worldshift: Black Sea Studios, the creators of Knights of Honor are developing a pretty unique sci-fi real-time RTS. Not much is known about the game so far, but what we do know is that Worldshift takes place thousands of years after a mysterious object brings on a cataclysm that destroys the human race in the 21st century. A new breed of humans are desperately trying to survive in 5 mega cities across the world while trying to eliminate the Plague that threatens the Earth.

Reasons why you should pick this up:

Original IP seems promising.

You can opt to play three different factions: Humans, Tribes or the Hive.

Mystical artifacts and relics replace tech trees in terms of upgrading your units.

Unique cooperative multiplayer gameplay


Spore: Will Wright, who revolutionized the "god-game" genre with the creation of the Sims is at it again with another ambitious project, Spore. Spore allows players to create a brand new species from it’s humble molecule beginnings to hopefully an advanced civilization of interstellar conquest. The game has been in production for a very long time, and the hype machine is growing and growing, but with such a dedicated team behind Will Wright, this game will no doubt be in the hands of players who love to play god. Oh, and did I mention an in-depth world creator?

Reasons why you should pick this up: (according to Spore.com)

Tide Pool Phase: Fight with other creatures and consume them to adjust the form and abilities of your creature. Similar to: Pac-Man

Creature Phase: Venture onto land and help your creature learn and evolve with forays away from your nest. Similar to: Diablo

Tribal Phase: Instead of controlling an individual creature, you are now caring for an entire tribe. Give them tools and guide their interactions as you upgrade their state of existence. Similar to: Populous

Civilization Phase: Once your city is established, your creatures begin seeking out and interacting with other cultures. Make contact with an olive branch or a war cry. The goal for your creatures is to conquer the planet. Similar to: Civilization, SimCity

Space Phase: Make contact, colonize, or terraform, then venture further to find other solar systems. A ‘mission’ structure provides new goals in your quest for galactic dominance. Similar to: SimEarth, Master of Orion.


Empire: Total War: The Total War series has become a very popular name in the RTS universe, putting the player in the role of a warlord of their choice and throwing them straight into the heat of battle. With such popular titles as Medieval: Total War and Rome: Total War getting the nod of approval from hardcore RTS gamers, it’s nice to see Creative Assembly is now engaging us in the world during the 18th century. Expect to explore and conquer the countries in Europe, North Africa, the Americas, the Indies, South East Asia and the Indian subcontinent.

Reasons why you should pick this up:

11 confirmed playable factions (so far)

Naval combat!

New 3D engine which allows for smooth large scale army battles and full naval combat.

New and improved campaign mode adds new 3D animations, more building structures and an improved AI reaction based on player decisions.

empire: total war

Starcraft II: Blizzard is a well-known name to casual and non-gamers thanks to World of Warcraft and all of its success. With all the success comes the riches, and what to do with those riches? Well why not invest it in making a sequel to one of the most popular RTS games of all time! Starcraft has been going strong for 10 years, and finally its successor is but months away from our greedy little hands. Expect to play your favorite three factions in a upgraded 3D engine with all the same intense action you were used to. Put in new units, a compelling single player mode and a huge multiplayer aspect and you are bound to be called RTS game of the year.

Reasons why you should pick this up:

Competitive mutliplayer fun.

New and reimagined older units bring the game we all love to a new level.

"Ultimate competitive real-time strategy game" – Blizzard

Fun for hours and hours and hours. Plus you have Blizzard’s track name stamped on this game. No complains here.

starcraft 2

Disciples III: Renaissance: The Disciples series can be called somewhat of an underground sensation with a cult of followers who praise the games. Disciples II: Dark Prophecy was one of the most well received turned-based fantasy themed RTS game of recent years, even when going head to head with such big names like Age of Wonders 2 and Heroes of Might and Magic 4. Now players can dive deeper into the Disciples universe with a brand new Virtual Dream engine provided by us by the developers Akella and .dat. With it being in development for almost three years, Akella wants Renaissance to compete with the other big boy turned-based RTS games in the market by offering a unique battle sytem.

Reasons why you should pick this up:

Play as "The Empire" the "Legions of the Damned" or the "Elven Alliance".

Units will be able to freely move around the battlefield and use the terrain for cover and extra defense.

Highly customizable hero units, from abilities to the armor they wear.

A unique and incredibly creative art style

disciples 3 renaissance

Other Mentionables:

Panzer: Cold War – The panzer games always prove to delivery us a good WW2 style RTS. Will this follow the trend?

Heroes of Might and Magic Kingdoms – A free browser based game that centers on building your Kingdom and fighting along side (or against) other players.

Jagged Alliance 3 – F3 Games is bringing back the popular turn-based RTS with a modified Silent Storm engine.

Society – A free MMORTS from the makers of Galactic Civilizations 2.

Perimeter 2 – Want to talk original RTS ideas? Perimeter brought it to the house with well received applause and the sequel is proving to be even better.

Multiwinia – Take Darwinia except add a mutliplayer aspect. Could get interesting…

Political Machine 2008 – From the makers of Sins of a Solar Empire brings you a strategy game based on the 2008 presidential election.

Europe Universalis Rome – Hardcore RTS enthusiasts who enjoyed previous EU games can expect to spend hours upon hours in this in depth strategy game.

There you go PC gamers, these are just some of the great RTS games that will grace our PC’s sometime this year. Don’t fret for too long, when World in Conflict starts to wear on you, you’ll have plenty of other RTS games to look forward to.

Stay tuned in the next couple of weeks as we look into what the Shooter, RPG, Adventure and MMO genres have in store for us in 2008.


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Author: GamerNode Staff View all posts by

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