It cannot be denied, that certain skills are simply in our blood. Many people demonstrate significant strategic abilities.

They are excellent in planning battle tactics and managing resources, even though in the 21st century we do not experience the hardships of war as often and on such a scale as was the case, for example, 70 years ago.

And it’s precisely for such people that strategy games have been emerging for years. Interestingly, such games have their origins… in ancient times! Although it may seem unlikely, the oldest discovered games, which involved tactical planning and strategy development, date back as far as… 2500 BC!

Of course, over the course of 4,500 years (wow!), these games have undergone a tremendous transformation, and currently, we can choose from hundreds of highly developed, meticulously detailed board and video war strategy games.

If you enjoy strategy, developing tactics, and are additionally drawn to military-war themes, today’s article is just for you! We’ll present you with a few war strategy games that offer authenticity and tactical depth at the highest level! Let’s dive in!

GameReleaseGenreDeveloper
Foxhole 2016-08-04 MMO Siege Camp
Panzer Corps 2 2020-03-19 Strategy Flashback Games
Hearts Of Iron IV 2016-06-06 Simulation Paradox Development Studio
Unity Of Command II 2019-11-12 Indie 2x2 Games
Company Of Heroes 2 Ardennes Assault 2014-11-17 Strategy Relic Entertainment
Company Of Heroes 3 2023-02-23 RTS Relic Entertainment
Company Of Heroes 2 Platinum Edition 2013-06-25 Strategy Relic Entertainment
Command Conquer Remastered Collection 2020-06-05 Strategy Petroglyph Games Inc
Blitzkrieg 2 Anthology 2005-09-23 Strategy Nival
Jagged Alliance 3 2023-07-14 Strategy Haemimont Games
Defcon 2006-09-29 Indie Introversion Software
Steel Division Normandy 44 2017-05-23 Action & Shooter Eugen Systems
Warno 2022-01-20 Strategy Eugen Systems
Flashpoint Campaigns Red Storm Players Edition 2013-10-09 Strategy On Target Simulations
Wargame Red Dragon 2014-04-17 Strategy Focus Entertainment

Hearts of Iron IV

Release date:2016-06-06
Genre:Simulation
Developer:Paradox Development Studio

Hearts of Iron IV is the fourth, full-fledged instalment of the game series initiated in 2002. Interestingly, the first HOI was created as a spin-off of the Europa Universalis series.

The game takes us to the times of World War II (1939-1945) and… gives us a free hand. By engaging in battles and alliances, we can recreate real historical events or create an alternative version of them in any way we choose.

This title is highly acclaimed for its faithful reproduction of historical realities, both in terms of maps and authentic characters, as well as the weaponry and vehicles used during that period.

Key features
  • A spin-off of Europa Universalis, which turned out to be quite successful
  • Faithful recreation of historical characters and realities
  • High realism in battles and tactical actions
  • The ability to create your own alternative version of World War II!

DCS World (Digital Combat Simulator World)

Release date:2018-03-18
Genre:Simulator
Developer:Eagle Dynamics SA

A free-to-play platform that combines all editions of the Digital Combat Simulator series.

This collective edition allows you to play, among others, editions such as the flight simulators Digital Combat Simulator: Black Shark, Digital Combat Simulator: A-10C Warthog and LockON: Flaming Cliffs 3, or the war strategy game Digital Combat Simulator: Combined Arms.

The game is highly praised for its decent graphics and high realism in reproducing flights and military aircraft skirmishes. Its additional advantages include its own mission editor and the ability to play on one server with multiple players, even those who play different editions of the series.

Key features
  • Collective platform, combining all productions from the Digital Combat Simulator series
  • Gameplay focusing on both aircraft flight simulation and strategic clashes
  • Custom mission editor

Steel Division 2

Release date:2019-06-20
Genre:Indie
Developer:Eugen Systems

This title is a sequel to the 2017 game Steel Division: Normandy 44. However, this time the game takes us to the territory of present-day Belarus, during Operation Bagration.

Unlike the previous instalment, Steel Division 2 is a turn-based game, with each turn representing the equivalent of half a day, and the battles taking place in real-time. The game features quite decent graphics and great authenticity and tactical depth.

This title allows for gameplay in several modes, offering both a single-player campaign and multiplayer PVP battles, as well as cooperative play. We have at our disposal 18 divisions and over 600 units.

Key features
  • Game set in the realities of World War II
  • Turn-based gameplay with real-time battles
  • Many gameplay options, a lot of divisions and units to choose from

Company of Heroes 2

Release date:2013-06-25
Genre:Strategy
Developer:Relic Entertainment

This highly acclaimed sequel to the game released in 2006 once again takes us to the realities of World War II.

In Company of Heroes 2, we play as military commanders, this time on the Eastern Front, during the Barbarossa operation (i.e., in the years 1941-1945). The game emphasizes strategic-tactical gameplay, while also allowing for base development.

The game boasts excellent graphics (significantly improved compared to the first instalment) and mechanics. Vehicles bypass natural obstacles, such as trees, infantry units can jump over walls and fences without wasting time bypassing them. The cover system has also been improved.

Key features
  • A continuation of the great strategy game from 2006
  • The game is set during the Barbarossa operation
  • Improved unit movement and combat mechanics

Wargame: Red Dragon

Release date:2014-04-17
Genre:Strategy
Developer:Focus Entertainment

Wargame: Red Dragon is another instalment of the series of war games that began in 2012 with Wargame: European Escalation.

As in previous instalments, the gameplay here takes us to the Cold War era (1975-1991), but this time we play as troops stationed in East Asia. For this reason, five new nations have been added to the game – North and South Korea, Japan, China, and ANZAC (the alliance of Australia and New Zealand).

The game offers 4 campaigns of varying length, difficulty, and scope of operations. Solo gameplay as well as multiplayer play via the network are possible. An interesting mechanic is the ability to share unit cards with other players, allowing newcomers to quickly develop their army.

Key features
  • Another instalment of the well-received RTS series
  • The story takes us to the period of more modern battles of the Cold War, rather than the usual World War II setting
  • Campaigns of varying length and difficulty

Unity of Command II

Release date:2019-11-12
Genre:Indie
Developer:2x2 Games

This is not a very popular, but warmly received military strategy game focusing on the period of World War II. Unity of Command II is the second part of the series started in 2011.

Image credit: 2×2 Games

The game’s story takes us to the Western Front of Europe during World War II. We play as the Allied forces, and our task is to repeat their historical victory. However, there is nothing stopping us from trying to play out subsequent battles in a slightly different way and give history an alternative turn!

The gameplay is turn-based, on a clear, hexagonal map in an isometric view. Interestingly, unlike the previous instalment, the map is covered with a fog of war, so to uncover what lies behind it, we must conduct reconnaissance operations.

Key features
  • Not very popular, but a fascinating war game
  • Discovering secrets through reconnaissance actions
  • The ability to play battles with historical accuracy or change the course of events

War Thunder

Release date:2012-11-01
Genre:MMO
Developer:Gaijin Entertainment

A free Massive Online Multiplayer game that is a simulator allowing battles to be played from the perspective of aeroplanes, tanks, and warships.

In this title, we move to the period of World War II and the Korean War. The interesting gameplay formula allows us to engage in simultaneous battles of naval warfare, armoured forces, and aviation during individual battles. The arsenal of weapons and vehicles is massive and includes real, historical military machines from the USA, Great Britain, the USSR, Germany, and Japan.

Up to 30 players, divided into two teams, can participate in battles. Depending on the selected mode, we can participate in either purely aerial or ground battles, or combine forces.

Key features
  • MMO game for up to 30 players
  • Massive arsenal of military machines
  • Simultaneous battles of naval warfare, armoured forces, and aviation during individual clashes

Summary

And that concludes our short ranking of war strategy games! As you can see, there are both typical real-time strategies, turn-based games, and those that combine tactical elements with simulation.

We have presented both several extremely popular and lesser-known titles. So, undoubtedly, you will choose something that suits your tastes!