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Command and Conquer has a spiritual sequel in new RTS you can play now

Classic Command and Conquer is back in spirit via a new RTS game, inspired by Red Alert 2 and Tiberian Sun, that you can play now on Steam.

RTS Tactical Warfare Steam RTS game: A base and armored units from Steam RTS game Tactical Warfare

For a moment, it seemed like a new Command and Conquer was about to be announced. When the entire RTS series was discounted and revamped on Steam earlier this year, the days of Red Alert, Yuri’s Revenge, and Kane’s Wrath felt like they might be returning, but right now, we’re still waiting for news on C&C’s future. There’s no need to despair, however. Available to playtest on Steam right now, a new real-time strategy game feels like the spiritual comeback of Command and Conquer, that classic Westwood gameplay but with some vital quality-of-life changes.

This is RTS Tactical Warfare, which if you blur your eyes slightly looks almost exactly like Red Alert 2 or Tiberian Sun. Created by independent developer Mizrab, it comes complete with campaign missions, a skirmish mode, multiplayer, and ‘siege survival,’ where you need to build, improve, and repair base defenses to protect against increasingly difficult waves of enemy units. There are two factions, both human, and a broad range of units. So far, that may sound like your standard-issue RTS game. But RTS Tactical Warfare has a few tricks.

First, there’s the build queue. Compared to classic Command and Conquer, where you can only construct one new facility at a time, in RTS Tactical Warfare, you can queue several new buildings and even rearrange them in order of priority. If you want to build ten turrets, but don’t want to keep scrolling back and forth from the frontline to your base every time one is completed, just schedule them all and then place them using the blueprint system once they’re all done.

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Second, you have the war planner, an intuitive but more complex method of giving orders. You can still rely on the basic binary of ‘move’ and ‘attack,’ but the war planner lets you specify which routes you want units to take and which units or buildings you want them to attack first. Especially in Red Alert and Tiberian Dawn, you might have a sweeping infantry army and a perfect flanking route all picked out, but when you send everyone forward, the pathfinding gets confused and they end up getting separated, ruining your plans before they’ve gotten started. That won’t happen here.

Finally, you can instantly swap from the classic-style isometric camera to a more comprehensive, panoramic ‘perspective’ view. It sounds like a minor tweak, but this allows you to keep your base on screen while also scouting the outer limits of the fog of war for any incoming enemies, rather than panning back and forth or relying on the minimap. Couple that with the visual style, which pays affectionate homage to the C&C games of old, and RTS Tactical Warfare is worth your time.

If you want to try the RTS Tactical Warfare playtest, it’s available now. Just go to the game’s Steam page, right here.

Otherwise, try some of the best strategy games, or maybe the best 4X games available on PC.

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