Talk:Real-time strategy

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Turn-Based Strategy redirects here instead of the Turn-based strategy article.[edit]

Could someone fix this, please? I tried to edit it but it didn't correct the mistaken redirection. (talk) 08:41, 27 October 2009 (UTC)


This article could really use some pictures to illustrate what a typical RTS looks like. I might put one or two on, to show different styles. -- (talk) 00:10, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

That would be ok, just make sure you include strong fair use rationale and when uploading. The screenshots have to correspond with something specific being discussed in the article (the captions should specify what). Otherwise they will get removed. Ham Pastrami (talk) 01:19, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

Missing important historical games[edit]

Very important games like The_Settlers (1993) and Populous (1989), who really shaped the RTS game world are missing completely in this page. Klaas van Gend 11:06, 3 July 2008 (UTC) Also, Civilization is missing as one of the pioneers in the genre. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:49, 12 October 2008 (UTC)

Civ falls more under the 4X genre, and is covered there instead. -- Sabre (talk) 16:19, 12 October 2008 (UTC)
I agree, civ is definitely not *real time* strategy. As for the settlers, Klaas, could you point out what was innovative about the game? The wiki article about it says it "it was the first game blending together principles that had not been seen before" which tells us exactly nothing. By the way, i nominated this article for review, i think it deserves more than C status. PizzaMan (talk) 12:00, 21 July 2014 (UTC)


Quote from article: "Recently, real-time strategy games have begun to incorporate physics engines, such as Havok, in order to increase realism. The first real-time strategy game to use a physics engine was Ensemble Studio's Age of Empires III, released on October 18, 2005,[9] which used the Havok Game Dynamics SDK to power its real-time physics. Company of Heroes, released September 14, 2006, was the first RTS that used real-time physics as a part of gameplay, including fully-destructible environments."

I believe that Homeworld used real-time physics for movement before any of these. I know you could also collide ships with each other and that the damage calculations took the mass of the ships into account. SharkD 04:14, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

I don't recall being able to collide ships into each other in Homeworld. If there was at some point (say in the campaign; I never played through it) perhaps it was pre-calculated? bob rulz 05:09, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
There is a special kamikaze attack in Homeworld 1 (it can also be added to Homeworld 2 via mods). Also, in Homeworld 2 you can enable collision damage via mods (it is disabled by default). This causes the ships to take damage if they happen to bump into each other (very annoying). Again, the damage calculations take mass and velocity into account. SharkD 05:54, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
Well, I can see it in Homeworld 2 (I only played the demo). However, I don't think this is a physics engine, just an implementation of physics for specific features. For example; the bouncing warthogs in Halo. It wasn't a physics engine, just an implementation of physics, if you get what I'm saying. I don't pretend to know a lot about these technicalities, so hopefully what I'm saying makes sense. bob rulz 06:06, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
Physics in Homeworld is a lot deeper than just bouncing warthogs. Also, the term "physics engine" is turning into a marketing buzzword. SharkD 01:43, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
How is it a marketing buzzword? A game either has a physics engine, or it doesn't. bob rulz 02:18, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
Every game has a physics engine, or characters would've been able to walk trough walls and such. As already said it's a marketing buzzword. (talk) 16:19, 7 January 2008 (UTC)
Yes, it is marketing, yes, every game has a physics model, but no, not every game can realistically claim a real-time physics engine. Mass and velocity used as input to a damage formula is not physics at all, really, it's just an arbitrary calculation. A physics engine is, in parlance, largely marked by the use of vectors, i.e. directional force. When the target ship is hit by the kamikaze, does the kamikaze impart its momentum to the target? Does it cause the target to spin? If not, what exactly is the physical calculation involved? However, in the interest of fairness and accuracy, perhaps the claim of "first RTS to use a physics engine" should be revised to state simply "first RTS to use Havok". Ham Pastrami (talk) 05:35, 10 January 2008 (UTC)


Quote from article: "Real-time strategy titles do not involve "turns" like turn-based strategy video or board games (such as chess). Rather, game time progresses in "real time": it is continuous rather than turn-by-turn; and all players may give orders to their troops at any time."

Can someone check the grammar of this sentence? I'm real bad at punctuation. SharkD 03:17, 2 June 2007 (UTC)

Fixed (I think). SharkD 06:13, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

Unclear statement[edit]

"However, the switch to full 3D was very gradual and most real-time strategy titles, including the first sequels to Command and Conquer, initially used isometric 3D graphics made by pre-rendered 3D tiles."

So, is C&C 3D, or isn't it? The article sounds like it can't make up its mind. SharkD 03:48, 2 June 2007 (UTC)

Pre-rendered 3D is not actual 3D, it uses sprites made from 3D objects and not real time rendering of such objects and it lacks proper perspective - units in the far end of the screen have the same size as units closer to the player's viewpoint, which is not the case in real 3D. (talk) 11:27, 25 December 2007 (UTC)

Fill in the blank[edit]

"The "clickfest" argument is also often voiced alongside a "button babysitting" criticism which pointed out that a great deal of game time, especially in earlier titles, is spent either waiting and watching for the next time a production button could be clicked, or rapidly alternating between different units and buildings, clicking their respective button."

Clicking their respective buttons to do what? Please complete the sentence. SharkD 07:39, 2 June 2007 (UTC)

War games - revisited[edit]

Perhaps the important element here is not that RTS invokes military-based challenges, but rather that RTS requires strategic competition between at least two distinct entities. Jav43 22:26, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

What? SharkD 01:41, 5 June 2007 (UTC)
I'm gonna have to agree with the what? response here. bob rulz 02:18, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

More than just Herzog[edit]

"None of the above titles would be recognizable as real-time strategy games by current standards. However, two later games--Herzog Zwei for the Sega Genesis in 1989 and Battle Master for the Amiga and Atari ST in 1990--are perhaps the earliest examples of games with feature-sets that are recognizable today."

First of all, I don't see how Herzog Zwei is closer to RTS's today than, say, Nether Earth. Nether Earth had a cursor/unit hybrid like a helicopter that had the only purpose of selecting and commanding units. In addition, Nether Earth had a minimap displayed on the main screen, not Herzog Zwei. That first statement claiming "None of the above titles would be recognizable as real-time strategy games by current standards" is absurd and I recommend it to be deleted.

I agree, it's pure Original Research apart from anything else and confuses a genre with the modern perception of a genre. It's like saying on the Flash Gordon entry that "none of these films would be recognised as science fiction today." --Zagrebo 09:26, 28 June 2007 (UTC)
I've been bold and removed it, along with a slight rewrite. It's been bothering me for a while, to be honest. --Zagrebo 09:28, 28 June 2007 (UTC)
Additionally, I see your point about Nether Earth which also featured factories and resource management before Herzog Zwei. --Zagrebo 09:32, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

Also, Modem Wars ( probably should be mentioned because its interface looks a lot like modern RTSs.... and it was made in 1988. -- 03:18, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

What in the hell happened?[edit]

Okay, I'm trying to figure out just what in the hell happened here. When I edited it and posted my edit, the rest of the history section suddenly disappeared. But it's still showing up when I go to edit it, and I can't get it to appear on the page! WTF happened? bob rulz 15:37, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

Okay, nevermind, I see what I did...after I read through it I didn't close the reference tag...I didn't realize that that could make it all disappear. That makes no sense...but, it's fixed. bob rulz 15:41, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

"Does Not Cite Sources" in Criticism Of Gameplay Section[edit]

There are over half a dozen sources cited in this section. If the person who placed the "Does Not Cite Sources" tag on that section could explain which statements are not properly cited, and how they would prefer them to be cited, then perhaps we can clean up this section. 10:02, 16 September 2007 (UTC)

I can't remember if I was the one who added it, but I would have done if I had read the section recently.
Firstly, there are statements like 'A third common criticism'. Common? Can we have a source saying it is common? We have opinion such as 'Of course, this does take the gameplay out of the realm of strategic decision-making.' which is simply original research.
The 4th, 5th and 6th criticism para's are entirely unsourced and verging on opinion.
Overall, the section is very poorly sourced, poorly written and isn't NPOV. However, the last time I made my feelings known about this poorly sourced and original research filled article known, I was shouted down by a group of users who don't understand our policies correctly, so I don't hold my breath in getting these things fixed.-Localzuk(talk) 10:26, 16 September 2007 (UTC)

I agree that the section could use a bit of a re-write. I will try to get to it soon. As well, the unsourced points may need to be deleted if a source cannot found. However, the sources that are listed are all valid sources; and while those points may need rewriting, they should not be marked for deletion. 03:33, 18 September 2007 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)

While it is true the section is poorly sourced, it is not true that there aren't any sources at all. I have removed the tag. SharkD 18:18, 27 October 2007 (UTC)
I've put back a similar tag that is less critical. SharkD 07:42, 4 November 2007 (UTC)

Source usage?[edit]

Source #15 (RPG Codex) has nothing to do with RTS games. Should it really be a source? Furthermore, some of the points cited are wrong, such as "It is easier to keep track of what the enemy is doing since you can see every move as it happens." Not true, there are TB(S) games with "Fog of war". The source itself acknowledges this. 19:41, 3 November 2007 (UTC)

The RPG Codex article deals with concepts, such as Turn-based and Real-time play. It compares RPGs with games like chess.
The article is referring to the fact that in TB games you can stop and observe each unit as it completes its turn. In many TB games, the game even shifts focus to each unit to make this easier (so that you don't have to scroll around to find them). In real-time games the player can't allot equal attention to all units; therefore, some actions go unnoticed. Feel free to reword the sentence so that it doesn't lead readers to the same conclusion. Also, I searched the text for "fog of war" and couldn't find any instances of the term being used. SharkD 04:28, 4 November 2007 (UTC)
I've rewritten the section.SharkD 07:03, 4 November 2007 (UTC)
The quote is "If the player is apathetic about the movement of an opponent because they are distant or out of line of sight..." implying that areas beyond the sight range of the unit(s) are obscured in some way. FoW is the best RTS analogy I can think of. 08:13, 4 November 2007 (UTC)
Yes, FoW is the correct term. SharkD 08:51, 4 November 2007 (UTC)

Incorrect statement[edit]

The article states that, "Other gameplay mechanics implied by RTS include resource gathering, base building, technological development, and abstract unit control." This is not correct. Resource gathering, base building and technological development are the mechanics shared with strategic wargames ('abstract unit control' is not defined in the article). RTSs share more in common with tactical wargames when it comes to combat. SharkD 05:24, 4 November 2007 (UTC)

It is correct, they are part of the definition of RTS, there is a "Genre classification debate" section in RTT page on wikipedia, which explains it somewhat and probably should be included in the RTS page as well. (talk) 11:34, 25 December 2007 (UTC)

transition or emergence of 3D?[edit]

think the 2d genre is not dead, so it should be emergence of 3d strategies

tiberian sun player,regeards —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:26, 28 November 2007 (UTC)

OK. SharkD (talk) 13:40, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

Another criticism[edit]

Another common criticism of RTSs is discussed here. The complaint is that RTS focus on killing harvestors as opposed to military tactics. The article also discusses a response to this criticism found in Dawn of War. SharkD 05:20, 1 December 2007 (UTC)

How is that a source, these are video games, any terms that are applied are created by the current-gamers. Not by some article writer. What ur doing is hearsay, its like using wikipedia as a source, or the news as a source. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:20, 9 December 2007 (UTC)
You appear not to be familiar with Wikipedia's policies on verifiability and in particular reliable sources. An article written by a staff writer at IGN is a high quality source. --Pak21 (talk) 13:54, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
This is actually a pretty common criticism. And it's verifiable by a reliable source. Every game genre has its critics. Get used to it. (talk) 21:14, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

List of sources[edit]

I notice that there are a bunch of new sources (mostly PDF files) listed at the bottom of the References section. It would be better to turn these into inline references, like the rest of the references—especially in an article which has been criticized for original research as often as this one has been. SharkD 06:44, 2 December 2007 (UTC)

Fair use rationale for Image:Dune 2 cropped screenshot attack on base.jpg[edit]

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BetacommandBot (talk) 21:18, 13 February 2008 (UTC)

Fair use rationale for Image:Homeworld.jpg[edit]

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BetacommandBot (talk) 22:34, 13 February 2008 (UTC)

Some ideas for "Refinement and transition to 3D" and "Specialization and evolution"[edit]

I noticed that we mention Total Annihilation for it's use of 3D graphics, but totally miss the more revolutionary or at least unique factor: That resources are infinite, generated over time by buildings.

Additionally we might consider mentioning Supreme Commander for it's unique user interface, in particular using the mouse wheel instead of side scrolling which changes the way the game plays hugely from previous games.

Finally we discuss games that have blended RTS with other genres. However nothing is said about Savage: The Battle for Newerth or it's sequel. Which are certainly notable for being the only games (to my knowledge) to have commercial success in blending RTS and RPG/FPS game play. —Preceding unsigned comment added by ASA-IRULE (talkcontribs) 22:31, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

Image copyright problem with Image:DawnofwarScreen1.JPG[edit]

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not a wikipedian, but the early/precursors section looks to have been vandalized... (talk) 01:45, 24 May 2008 (UTC) dlj

real-time tactics: Close Combat[edit]

In the section "Specialization and evolution", it says "Some games have moved toward an increased focus on tactics, with titles such as Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War (2004), Star Wars: Empire at War (2006), and Company of Heroes (2006) replacing the traditional resource gathering model, where designated resource gathering units collect the resources used for producing further units or buildings, with a strategic control-point system, where control over strategic points progressively yields construction/reinforcement points. Dawn of War and Company of Heroes also replaces individual units with "squads". Some have begun to define this new school of design as real-time tactics to distinguish it from the more popular conventions of the genre." If the section is meant to convey that a merge has recently started between RTT and RTS, it should be rephrased. The way it is now it sounds as if Dawn of War was the first RTT game. However, e. g. Close Combat came out in 1996, and it had no resource gathering, was squad-based (but it doesn't have construction/reinforcement). Nczempin (talk) 18:38, 11 June 2008 (UTC)

I don't think it is meant to imply a merge with RTT, nor do I think there is a prevailing opinion that these games are RTT rather than RTS. I'm removing that last sentence. Ham Pastrami (talk) 22:36, 11 June 2008 (UTC)

Is RTT a subgenre or not?[edit]

Currently, this article's introduction reads: "and games of the real-time tactics variety are generally not considered to be “real-time strategy”,"

The RTT WP page says that RTT is a sub-genre of RTS.

So which is right?

Ordinary Person (talk) 14:21, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

Debatable. I'd suggest finding sources to back up one or both claims, or simply remove them both. Ham Pastrami (talk) 01:14, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

online multiplayer games compared to turn based... what?[edit]

I have a question about this sentence I had erased, but someone reverted my edit, and thus put it back in. "This lends the genre well to multiplayer gaming, especially in online play, compared to turn-based games."

All multiplayer games are online, aren't they? And why compare it to turn base games? The online turn based games are popular also. I don't see why the two are being compared at all. Dream Focus (talk) 20:49, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

No, of course not all multiplayer games are online, see hotseat and split screen gaming to name some examples. Why wouldn't you compare RTS and TBS, given the very names of the genres imply a duality? Are you also puzzled by the existence of section 2.2.2? Ham Pastrami (talk) 01:13, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

Also, article states "Command & Conquer became the first popular RTS game to utilize competitive multiplayer." right after mentioning Warcraft, a popular game, which came out a year earlier, and featured competitive multiplayer. False. (talk) 16:09, 2 April 2010 (UTC)

Revert warring[edit]

To the anon that is insisting on introducing POV into the article, do you have any sources to backup this biased approach to looking at the RTS genre? Ham Pastrami (talk) 02:11, 18 August 2008 (UTC)

NOTE) Article locked for one week. I would suggest you show up and talk, 98., or else you'll just be seen as provoking conflict. -Jéské (v^_^v Bodging WP edit by edit) 04:47, 18 August 2008 (UTC)

StarCraft is undisputedly the most succesful Real Time Strategy game of all time and is routinely listed by many organization in the top 10 games of all time lists. To give it lip service to it as just another RTS game amongst hundres of others is simply not an accurate representation of its relevance to the genre. It is impossible to have serious honest RTS discussion that does not feature StarCraft prominently. This is the consensus of serious followers of the RTS genre. A few individuals might not like the fact that certain RTS's are more important than others, but are we going for community consensus or some individual's personal opinion that all RTS's should be viewed equally?

Sales source [1]

IGN top #10 PC games of all time [2]

FireSquad's top #10 PC games of all time [3] (talk) 05:17, 18 August 2008 (UTC)

We don't need to give all kinds of details about StarCraft. Okay, it's popular, but that can be summed up in a sentence. Let's explain what it actually contributed to the genre, and then move on. It doesn't deserve its own section. Arguably, this is a violation of our policy on WP:UNDUE weight. Randomran (talk) 06:12, 18 August 2008 (UTC)
Where in the article do you see "hundreds of other" RTS games listed? Starcraft was already picked out as a highlight for the genre, among a handful of other mentions. Nobody even suggested the idea that all RTS games are equal, that is a pure invention on your part. How many copies SC sold is not generally relevant to the genre when it lacks a comparative figure to the sales figures of other games, and to the number of total RTS games sold (feel free to add these figures if you can find them). The IGN list you mention puts Dune 2 as the 2nd best game of all time,[4] beating SC by 5 places yet you seem content with its quick and to-the-point mention as the progenitor of the genre. RTS was already a popular and well-established genre before SC came out, with games like the C&C and Warcraft series. SC may be in the #1 spot, but it is not heads and shoulders above its forebears and competitors. From the FiringSquad list, which states: There are many real-time strategy games that could arguably take StarCraft's spot on this list. After all, it was WarCraft II that made multiplayer RTS gaming popular through Kali. Red Alert made internet gaming even easier and was arguably the first true internet RTS, and Total Annihilation made the first use of 3D, not to mention truly combining land, sea and air. The genre is successful independently of Starcraft and the article does not need to focus around discussion of this one game as if the genre's existence depended on it. That is most certainly undue weight. Ham Pastrami (talk) 09:24, 18 August 2008 (UTC)
Sure the genre would exist, but would be remotely the same or as popular? I think SC is pretty profound. (talk) 18:25, 18 August 2008 (UTC)
You're gonna need some research to support that. Wikipedia is not what you or I think. Sure, we can offer one sentence on how much SC sold, and we can offer another sentence on how many critics have considered it a great game. But there's no major innovation that came from Starcraft that wasn't already in Warcraft, let alone Dune II. We can cover this subject very quickly, and let people read the actual StarCraft article for more information. See 4X#History for how we cover the history of a game genre: Civilization is by far the best selling 4X series and one of the most critically acclaimed games of all time, but you only need a short paragraph to explain its significance to the game genre. Randomran (talk) 19:00, 18 August 2008 (UTC)

Just a quick note, a discussion on this has been started at WT:VG#Third opinions needed for RTS. -- Sabre (talk) 15:48, 19 August 2008 (UTC)

StarCraft might be big, but it certainly did not define RTS. It should just be stated as the most commercially successful RTS game as of 2008. Jappalang (talk) 10:54, 20 August 2008 (UTC)

Now that the protection has been lifted and it is pretty clear that the consensus both here and at WT:VG is against splitting StarCraft off due to concerns about undue weight, I have reverted to the previous version. Please do not start edit warring again, any further discussion should take place here before any such edits are made again. -- Sabre (talk) 15:53, 25 August 2008 (UTC)

The original edits by anon do sound heavily biased -- or rather, rank 'fanboism' as it is called in the gaming community. If any game should have any special mention it should be Company of Heroes as it is both innovative, and is the highest ranked RTS of all time. Source: Even so, to discuss a specific RTS giving it an elevated position here violates WP:Undue Weight. Starcraft being a commercial success in Korea means very little. It was neither innovative, nor seminal in the genre, and is not the highest rated RTS either. Let's try to keep 'fanboism' out of wikipedia articles as it is not encyclopaedic. Editors on 'Gaming' Wikipedia entries have to be particularly diligent owing to the almost-religious zeal with which many gamers revere and defend their favourite game. Rlinfinity (talk) 18:40, 16 August 2009 (UTC)

Be careful about your own bias. Your source selection went to one particular website that ranked Company of Heroes 1% higher than Starcraft II and (for unclear reasons) omitted Starcraft from its list entirely. Your statement that SC is "neither innovative, nor seminal..." is of course personal opinion as well, not verifiable fact. It may be a prevailing viewpoint, it may not, but I've seen terms like "revolutionary" and "innovative" used in many of the references in this very article when discussing SC specifically. A quick google searched turned up this [5], this[6], and this[7] page of RTS rankings which all conflict with your source. How do these websites determine their ranking? I don't have a clue since they don't base it on an open process. It's like saying that one university is "more important" than another simply because its U.S._News_&_World_Report ranking is one-tenth of a point higher. People that use the term 'fanboism' to label a positive bias are frequently trying to push their own negative opinion on the same subject. What's important to us as editors is to avoid improper coverage of one particular viewpoint and keep it proportionate to its prevalence among reliable sources not its prevalence among editors. (talk) 13:34, 23 November 2010 (UTC)
Your google results are just random sites ranking RTS games. GameRankings on the other hand is a review aggregator for games like RottenTomatoes for movies. (talk) 06:16, 12 January 2011 (UTC)


I noticed the following text:

City-building games, construction and management simulations, and games of the real-time tactics variety are generally not considered to be “real-time strategy”,[1] though their gameplay involves some overlapping concepts.[2]
  1. ^ Bruce Geryk. "A History of Real-Time Strategy Games". GameSpot. Retrieved 2008-03-31. Although games such as Populous and SimCity are certainly played in real time, these give rise to the "god game" genre, which includes such titles as the city-builder series from Impressions, Will Wright's innovative designs, and much of Peter Molyneux's work, including the upcoming Black & White. Games in this genre tend to appeal to their own fans, and while there definitely is an overlap between these two genres, gamers generally see them as distinct from one another. 
  2. ^ Adams, Dan (7 April 2006). "The State of the RTS" (HTML). IGN. Retrieved 2007-05-31.  Check date values in: |date= (help)

Additional emphasis is mine. However in real-time tactics we can read

Real-time tactics (RTT[1]) is a computer game sub-genre of real-time strategy games [...]
  1. ^ "Point - CounterPoint: Resource Collection vs. Fixed Units" (HTML). StrategyPlanet. Retrieved 2007-11-04. 

In which again additional emphasis is mine. Now, these two claims are in contradiction with each other. HTH, --Blazar.writeto() 22:51, 21 August 2008 (UTC)

  • I checked the references for the statements in each article. In the RTS article, the source says that God games aren't RTSs (and gives examples of city-building games and CMSs too). But nowhere in there does it mention real-time tactics *not* being a type of RTS. However, I checked the real-time tactics article. The statement that real-time tactics is a "subgenre" of RTS is completely unsourced. In other words, we have no clue if *either* article is right about the relationship between real-time tactics and real-time strategy. See the problem? Randomran (talk) 03:16, 22 August 2008 (UTC)
The RTT article has been heavily remodelled by tendentious editors. I am the original author of the RTT article, and a principal contributor the the RTS article, but both have been neutered to such an extent under the "NPOV" and "OR" justifications as to make them quite worthless, uninformative, partly outright wrong, and in themselves pushing OR and POV. I have since a long time withdrawn from Wikipedia, which is a failed project, and will no longer attempt to correct anything done by less insightful editors. Mikademus (talk) 17:32, 4 September 2008 (UTC)

Terminology: "Real Time Tactics" Vs. "Real Time Strategy"[edit]

I realize people have talked about this issue, I wanted to state my concerns in my own words, and people can take my arguments on their own weight. I will point out that we are clearly stuck with the term "real time strategy"... it's a part of gaming culture now. But some mention of the issue might be useful for people interested in correctly using the English language.

My understanding is that the term "Strategy" and "Strategic" refers to macroscopic warfare decisions, made by a Commander-In-Chief (different countries and historical periods use different terms, of course) and possibly a 3-5 star general. Strategic decisions in real warfare include an actual decision to invade or destroy a major city - i.e. population center (or large scale refining, mining, or military base city - in which the population ends up the target because they are part of the operations), as with strategic nuclear weapons, which are built for that purpose. Tactics, on the other hand, are smaller, more individual decisions made in order to win a fight or battle that is part of a larger war. The term "real time strategy" being used for what are obviously tactical games is somewhat unfortunate, because the terms really are different, and in the real world, we might consider that we could (for example) survive tactical nuclear warfare but not strategic nuclear warfare (at least if you assume that even a single nuclear weapon being used wouldn't severely harm the world's economy and psychological state) - tactical warfare would target military forces *only* and the weapons would be of a low yield. In the case of strategic nuclear war, the whole idea is to destroy the enemy's ability to make new weapons and wage new wars (and even eliminate a competing culture or economy) by eliminating population centers.

While there are RTS games with tactical nukes, it's clearly just a tactical context and not strategic because of the scale. For strategic warfare, most every RTS game has a land-area that is much, much smaller than the area that would be wiped out by a 500 kiloton weapon or larger (never mind 30-60 of them on a target in full blown realistic global strategic warfare).. most games in fact "cheat" and have the scale of the nuclear explosion more like a 1,000 to 10,000 pounds of TNT explosion (which begs the question, why bother to use a nuke to begin with?) but "dress it up" with a bright flash or a characteristically ominous mushroom cloud. (Of course, conventional explosions do make a mushroom cloud but due to the smaller yield it has a lot to do with the surface of the ground and how much dust is available. You won't often see mushroom clouds with such bombs dropped on a rain forest, for example, or with phosphorus or napalm that has a sideways momentum, but I'm getting off track here...)

I think actual strategy games (like Risk, Civilization or DEFCON) are to tactical games as tactical games (Warcraft 1-3, The Settlers, Command & Conquer, Company of Heroes) are to first-person games (Doom, Pathways Into Darkness, Quake, Unreal, Team Fortress 2, Left 4 Dead) scale-wise.

(Also note: I think God-Games are considered tactical or strategic if there is in fact another God you have to deal with who has their own population they control - otherwise your only opponent is circumstance/environment. Populus, The Settlers II, Sim City, and Black & White become strategic games once there is another God to compete with.) --Radical Mallard December 22, 2008, 7:34 AM EST

I think this is an interesting idea. I don't disagree. But the fact remains that people call Warcraft an RTS, and you won't find too many people calling it RTT. However, I think what you said is pretty relevant to the article. If you could find some research that says "RTS is a misnomer for many games", I would definitely want to include it in here. Randomran (talk) 17:12, 22 December 2008 (UTC)
Good debate. However, it is a little late now to change the entirety of game genre terminology - we're stuck with "RTS". Remember, RTS isn't a dictionary definition as much as a label, that unfortunately in this case carries some unsuitable connotations. Both "strategy" in RTS as well as "tactics" in RTT has only spurious connections to the military/dictionary definition of the terms. But if you find sources, a "criticism of genre name" section would be nice. Miqademus (talk) 14:43, 23 December 2008 (UTC)
GameSpy discusses this issue at length in their Strategy Gaming editorial. They make a different assertion however; they instead say that real-time games are weak in tactics when compared to turn-based games (with the exception of games in the RTT sub-genre). Quote: "Tactics is all about how you win each battle. For example, exactly how your ground forces will assault that ILA base is a tactical consideration. By and large real-time strategy games are long on strategy and short on tactics. The inverse is true with turn-based strategy and wargaming. Of course there are exceptions. Most real-time exceptions come from the fixed-unit side of real-time gaming. Games like Close Combat, Ground Control, and Shogun are good examples of real-time games that reward sound tactics." The article is from 2002 however, prior to the release of Dawn of War and Company of Heroes which blur the line a bit.
As for your hypothesis that strategy games are to tactical games as tactical games are to FPSs, this is mirrored by the fact that the wargaming community sub-divides wargames into different levels based on scope, ranging from grand strategy games to tactical games to man-to-man games and so forth. SharkD (talk) 23:55, 19 February 2009 (UTC)

Orphaned references in Real-time strategy[edit]

I check pages listed in Category:Pages with incorrect ref formatting to try to fix reference errors. One of the things I do is look for content for orphaned references in wikilinked articles. I have found content for some of Real-time strategy's orphans, the problem is that I found more than one version. I can't determine which (if any) is correct for this article, so I am asking for a sentient editor to look it over and copy the correct ref content into this article.

Reference named "fundamentals":

I apologize if any of the above are effectively identical; I am just a simple computer program, so I can't determine whether minor differences are significant or not. AnomieBOT 09:39, 17 February 2009 (UTC)

Answering 'Criticisms of Gameplay'[edit]

I've added some notes on modern RTS games such as Company of Heroes that address the criticisms of traditional RTS games. This isn't really original research and is well known among the savvy members of various RTS gaming commmunities - especially those who play Company of Heroes/Men of War etc avidly. I haven't included any references, but I hope someone else here can take the time to search for add appropriate references. I myself will get around to it sometime when I have a bit more time on my hands. Rlinfinity (talk) 06:29, 2 September 2009 (UTC)

While it's nice to try and counter the absurdly large number of criticisms (why are they there?) the section now reads like an advertisement for Company of Heroes. Suggest revision (talk) 04:58, 24 February 2010 (UTC)

Game Replays[edit]

Should this article include the prevalence of game replays in RTS game communities? GRHooked (talk) 18:49, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

Criticism Section[edit]

Do we really need a huge section ripping the genre apart compared to other genres? The Turn-based Strategy page doesn't have a criticism section, and they're dull, dull, dull. RTS is a popular genre so surely criticism is more notable in other genres than it is here, as less would criticise! Rubiscous (talk) 13:54, 21 August 2009 (UTC)

Turn-based strategy is time-honoured and there is no contention regarding the strategic/tactical implications of a game like Chess. It has been intensely studied and is regarded as requiring deep analytical capabilities to play well. To claim that RTS hss strategic/tactical merit purely on the grounds that it is popular is a logical fallacy: argumentum ad populum. RTS is a new genre and RTS games are popular because they are computer games. Their value in terms of strategy is therefore called in to question, and needs to be analysed -- naturally by outside sources, as original research is against WP policy. Rlinfinity (talk) 06:30, 2 September 2009 (UTC)

It's a year later, but this is near the bottom so I won't make a new section. As editors, our opinions on the subject don't matter. Whether we personally think one genre or the other has more merit is irrelevant and the burden is not "truth" but verifiability. For the time being I've removed the unsourced discussion from the latter half of the criticism section, as it read more like an essay written by a fan of RTS gaming. The former is probably over-coverage of the negative viewpoints on RTS gaming, and if so violates NPOV, but this is something that really needs to be discussed for consensus before that section is overhauled. The representation of various viewpoints must be proportionate to the depth of coverage each has received. (talk) 13:12, 23 November 2010 (UTC)

so whaddaya do when the editor is a notable source for the subject(original research?) :P can they reference their own publications as sources? :P Its not that i don't believe WP has policies concerning this, just curious to see what editors here will say on the subject..and by the way imo and to counter the sourceless argument put forth on behalf of some rts gamers in the article, "rushing" is actually a troll move because given that almost all games have an underlying rpg element to them(in that player is put in a setting and asked to play it out in some way)'s kind've unrealistic and a product of the immortality effect of video gaming a la grand theft Auto San Andreas which could arguably be said evolved the GTA series into an RTT..the effect being: people do stuff in-game that they wouldn't do irl because they know they won't actually be hurt or die irl..I'm going to source this edit in wikitalk and use it for reference in main article and leave it a mystery as to how notable I am as an authority on this subject... :P j/k..I know this entry probably be removed and plagarised..Does anybody rememeber a space domination opera called "Overlord"? I think the battle was rts or rtt..well it was real-time something. (talk) 08:01, 21 February 2013 (UTC)

Source of "Real-Time Strategy Game"[edit]

"Brett Sperry is credited with coining the term to market his video game, Dune II.[2][3]"

In Chris Crawford's The Art of Computer Game Design ( the author directly states, "Indeed, real-time play is rare in strategy games (this is changing; LEGIONNAIRE from Avalon-HIII is a notable real-time strategy game)".

Could this be the source of "real-time strategy game"? It certainly predates the game "Dune".

HacKed (talk) 01:01, 13 March 2010 (UTC) hacked

There is a semantic difference between strategy games played in real-time, and a "real-time strategy" game. The latter is a synonym for "Dune II clone", and in any event the passage in the article is accurate -- the term was coined with Dune II. Ham Pastrami (talk) 00:26, 15 March 2010 (UTC)
Unless I'm mistaken there were several precursors to the Dune II/Warcraft I bloodline. These were proto-RTS games in some sense. It wouldn't hurt to mention that briefly. (talk) 17:47, 14 June 2010 (UTC)

2D Graphics[edit]

Should the Graphics section not also cover 2D graphics and the demands for 2D RTS games from some RTS Players for new, Modern 2D RTS games (usualy made from prerendered 3D graphics)like for example SunAge, which is a more recent commercially available 2D RTS game. As well as the Arguments for and against 2D RTS games over 3D for example; games using 2D graphics are "usualy" less demanding therefore better 2D graphics can be used and a larger number of ingame items can be displayed OR 2D RTS games dont allow the same sort of camera control as there 3D Brothers And Basic Limitations of both (2D & 3D) Stereotypical game engines. (For example subteranian units are more difficult to recreate in 3D, however it has been done)Revolutionarydb (talk) 16:23, 26 May 2010 (UTC)

Cytron Masters[edit]

Quote from Matt Barton at Gamasutra: "SSI's most famous non-CRPG game is probably Cytron Masters (1982), one of the first (if not the first) real-time strategy games." I know nothing else about the game. SharkD  Talk  07:31, 5 September 2010 (UTC)

What is your point? How is this related to the article? What do you want to do with this quotation? Also, is there a reason why you italicize the entire quotation? Quotations are not supposed to be fully italicized. XP1 (talk) 07:15, 6 December 2010 (UTC)
He's proposing it as a possible source to use to support which RTS game came first. This is probably a good substitution since the current source on that point is mobygames which is an open tertiary source and therefore generally far less reliable. Gamasutra on the other hand has an editorial board and as someone recently informed me it is considered to have a reputable fact-checking process. It's a good improvement so I'm making the change.
Try to hold back the urge to nitpick others' talk entries, as it tends to put others on the defensive. "Be conservative in what you send; be liberal in what you accept.". (talk) 04:00, 8 December 2010 (UTC)

Grammatical error[edit]

Page seems to be locked for editing, but the heading "Precursors and early Genesis" is irritating. Unless you're talking about the band or the Bible, "genesis" doesn't need a capital. Could someone please fix it? (talk) 12:23, 31 August 2011 (UTC)

CTRL-F “Lemmings” — Zero results[edit]

— Preceding unsigned comment added by Ranunculoid (talkcontribs) 18:55, 8 February 2013 (UTC)

MOBA is listed as a sub-genre but is not talked about anywhere in the article[edit]

MOBAs are very popular right now and seem significant enough to be mentioned in this article, but I am terrible at editing pages. Also see the video game genres page. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:13, 3 October 2013 (UTC)

WP:VG assessment[edit]

This article is coming along nicely - it's currently a very informative, well-written article. However, I'm afraid to say it doesn't meet all of the B-Class criteria, and so for now must remain C-class. (High importance also seems appropriate to me.) The referencing isn't strong enough for a B-Class article: as it is there are lots of nicely-formatted references, but even so too much of the article remains unsourced. Additionally, I can't help but feel that some explanatory pictures would be helpful in explaining the "standard RTS interface". Fair use means most well-known games are off-limits, but there are probably some open-source games out there which you could take a screenshot from which would be fine. To reiterate, things are looking very promising, and the content that is here is great, but it's not quite watertight enough for B. Hope this helps! Una LagunaTalk 12:03, 27 September 2014 (UTC)

Rush deletion discussion[edit]

Rush (video gaming) has been nominated for deletion at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Rush (video gaming), if anyone involved with this article might be interested in weighing in. —Lowellian (reply) 04:17, 28 August 2016 (UTC)