After Starcraft, Total Annihilation is perhaps one of the greatest old-school RTS games ever. Although there isn’t much of a plot (something about two armies fighting over weather or not to transfer human consciousness to machines), the strategy options that the game gave players were unprecedented compared to other RTS games around that time. The game is considered a spiritual predecessor to Gas Powered Game’s Supreme Commander (lead designer Chris Taylor developed both games). There is no resource gathering, as the two resources you need (metal and energy) stream into your reserves at a fixed rate, and battles can consist of over 1000 units on the field, which was unheard of at it’s time. The game also featured a rudimentary physics system for explosions, projectiles, and wreckage. Various patches and utilities have been constructed by both developer Cavedog and the fan community, adding new units, races, maps, and other features.

If you’re a fan of the genre, you owe it to yourself to check out this lost classic. The game, along with its two expansions Core Contingency and Battle Tactics are both available on