RTS

Men of War: Assault Squad 2 available through Steam Early Access

Emanuel Maiberg at

Last month, DigitalMindSoft made Men of War: Assault Squad 2 available to those who pre-purchased the game. Now you can get into the beta with Steam Early Access. The game usually costs $35, but it’s currently being offered for $28, a 20 percent discount.


Sins of a Dark Age in Steam Early Access for $5

Emanuel Maiberg at

It’s been a long time since we heard from Ironclad’s MOBA Sins of a Dark Age, but it’s still alive and kicking and has just landed on Steam Early Access for $5. That’s a steal compared to the $25 you had to pay previously for a founder edition and access to the closed beta. However, when it’s ready, Sins of a Dark Age will be free-to-play.


Grey Goo: How Weta Workshop is helping Petroglyph build "a world worth fighting for"

PC Gamer at

Petroglyph's upcoming Grey Goo is not just a sci-fi RTS, but a launch-pad for additional games that will take place in the same universe. With so much on the line, it's crucial for Petroglyph to create a setting that won't just provide a good backdrop for RTS combat, but become a world that will fascinate players for years to come.


Wargame: Red Dragon trailer shows the series' first naval combat scenes

Phil Savage at

It used to be that wars were only fought on land, and that made everybody very sad. A full 70% of the Earth's surface is water, meaning that we just weren't making full use of the space provided to us. Luckily, boats were invented, meaning wars could spill out onto the sea. Now Eugen Systems, makers of the Cold War RTS series Wargame, have caught up to this amazingly buoyant technology. The upcoming Wargame: Red Dragon will be the first game in the series to feature naval combat. A new trailer gives a brief glimpse of how it will look.


Homeworld: Remastered Collection announced by Gearbox

Phil Savage at

For too long, the Homeworld license was adrift, seemingly trapped in the endless black void of space THQ's licensing vault. Now it's been freed to explore the stars Gearbox's release schedule. We already knew about Homeworld: Shipbreakers (née Hardware: Shipbreakers), the once "spiritual successor" - now actual successor - to the space RTS series. Now Gearbox have announced Homeworld: Remastered Collection, an upgraded re-release of the first two games.


Men of War: Assault Squad 2 open beta available with pre-purchase

Emanuel Maiberg at

DigitalMindSoft's Men of War: Assault Squad 2—a follow-up to its infantry-heavy standalone expansion—is now in open beta, but you'll have to spend a little money to get in. The game's regular price is set at $35/£25, though it's currently offered at a 20 percent discount for $28/£20.


Company of Heroes 2 adds new server system and map in Aftermath update

Patrick Carlson at

Multiplayer lag is the primary enemy of Company of Heroes 2's new Aftermath update. Launched yesterday, the RTS's new features boast an improved server system that should bring a better, more stable experience to the online battlefield, according to developer Relic Entertainment. Aftermath also includes new combat balancing, a community-made map, and a more efficient surrender mechanic.


Dungeon Keeper free on GOG.com

Patrick Carlson at

If Valentine's Day hasn't already had its merry way with you, leave it to free games to get you in a good mood this weekend. In this case it's 1997's Dungeon Keeper and the fine folks at GOG.com who have stepped up to put a—hopefully—devilish grin on your face. The classic dungeon management game is free to download there through 10:59 GMT Sunday.


Starcraft II's 2.1 update rolling out this week, Arcade and custom games now completely free

Phil Savage at

This week's 2.1 update for Starcraft 2 doesn't rebalance any of the game's units, suggesting that - at least for now - Blizzard are pretty confident that everything in the game is OP. Instead, then, they get to focus on improving other key experiences: like music and tiny hovering clan pictures. They're also making a big push into another of the game's core components: mucking about. As such, the Starcraft Arcade is now available to anyone who downloads the free Starter Edition of the game.


Focus Home Interactive announces new RTS Etherium

Emanuel Maiberg at

Etherium is the name of a new real-time strategy game from Tindalos Interactive, the French developer responsible for Stellar Impact. It's also the name of the precious resource that fuels its science fiction premise. Stupid names for important resources is an important facet of all great franchises. Command & Conquer has Tiberium, which is thankfully less obvious than Avatar’s Unobtainium, which, unfortunately, is a term engineers actually use. So based on that alone, Etherium at least seems to be checking all the RTS boxes.


Oxide's engine tech demo throws thousands of starships into strategy battles

PC Gamer at

New independent studio Oxide Games wants to reshape the way strategy games are built. The five-man team—mostly ex-Civilization V developers—is building a new 64-bit 3D engine called Nitrous, with a focus on adding some technical muscle to new turn-based and real-time strategy games. The aim, according to the studio, is to help developers add massive scope to upcoming games.


Natural Selection 2 adds new...er, old Eclipse map in latest update

Tom Sykes at

If you played Natural Selection back in the day, you'll probably remember the Eclipse map, which according to its creators was "one of the greatest maps ever made for the original Half-Life mod". Well they would say that. Their enthusiasm appears to be genuine, however, as they've painstakingly updated Eclipse and incorporated it into the significantly prettier Natural Selection 2. In the spirit of jolly old St Nick, they've also released the damned thing for free. Launch NS2 on Steam and you should your game has been automagically updated with the new/old map, as part of the Build 262 patch. See Eclipse in all its corrugated sci-fi splendour below.


Starcraft 2's 2.1 patch enters PTR, brings Extension Mods and classic soundtracks

Phil Savage at

Public Test Realm is a great name for a patch preview server. It sounds grand and democratic, like the ornate forum of a philosophically minded republic. It's much better than what I'd have called it: probably Alpha Hovel or Beta Bin. Starcraft 2's own Trial Toilet has been filled with the first drops of the upcoming patch 2.1, giving players an early preview of a reworked custom map system, an event calendar for clans and groups, and a set of classic soundtracks, optionally enabling the tunes of StarCraft and Brood War into non-campaign matches.


Natural Selection 2 World Championship Tournament sees crowdfunding success

Patrick Carlson at

Indie shooter Natural Selection 2 will get a world championship. The FPS/RTS hybrid's community-led project has raised the full $30,000 it said it needs to bring 24 players to Cologne, Germany and stage an eSports event to determine a winning team. An ambitious goal, to be sure, but the money is now there to make it happen, according to the fan effort's official crowdfunding site.


Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion encounters some Stellar Phenomena

Michael Jones at

Ironclad Games' Sins of a Solar Empire came out in 2008, and the space-faring real-time strategy game has since had three expansions—the last of which was Rebellion in 2012. Its newest DLC is a much smaller affair, but still adds new content for only a little bit of money.


Natural Selection 2 World Championship on the cards...if fans can raise $30,000

Tom Sykes at

Crowdfunding. Everybody's at it these days, and I'll tell you precisely who when the remainder of this post has successfully reached its whopping 68p target. UPDATE: thanks! Everybody's crowdfunding, but not everybody is crowdfunding an international tournament to a particularly excellent RTS/shooter. Natural Selection 2 fans want $30,000 to make a World Championship happen. Developers Unknown Worlds have already blessed the enterprise, paying for a studio in Cologne and Twitch TV promotion - that just leaves the cost of getting everyone over there. $925 has been raised so far, so there's still a fair way to go.


Russian government producing games to teach "patriotic" lessons

Ian Birnbaum at

Video games produced in Russia and Eastern Europe are nothing new, what with the Stalker series and Metro: Last Light. For the first time, though, we could start seeing video games produced in part by the Russian government to teach players specifically about the glorious history of the Russian military.


Universum: War Front mixes RTS and FPS gameplay, made by a solo developer

Ian Birnbaum at

Universum: War Front, a new indie game seeking funding on Kickstarter, is an RTS that lets you zoom down and take control of a hero unit at any time during battles. That’s a pretty cool trick by itself, but this game looks and feels like the product of a large, professional studio—no small accomplishment when the entire thing was written, programmed and designed by one guy.

Planetary Annihilation gets intergalactic lore download ahead of tomorrow's beta release

Ian Birnbaum at

Planetary Annihilation is still winding its way through the final stages of development, but lost in all of the galactic domination and throwing-planets-at-other-planets is the real question: what’s my motivation? A new update for Kickstarter backers details the lore and various factions, also known as the planet-throwers and the planet-throwees.

Budding artists can now tool around in StarCraft 2

Katie Williams at

Is crafting silly hats for Team Fortress 2 just not artistically challenging enough? It's time to move on, my friend, and reach for the stars—of StarCraft 2, that is, thanks to Blizzard's newly released Art Tools.