Once the focal point of the scene, strategic games now have only one key presence. There has been a major drought in recent years in terms of new topics. Is the senior in the eSports scene still confident?
Real-Time-Strategy (RDS). A genre that everyone once played. Unfortunately it looks different today. Strategy games have become an important genre that is rarely played. But how did the shift in interest occur, and is there still hope for games like Age of Empires, Warcraft and Go?
Where did all the good strategy games go?
When was the last time you played and enjoyed the current RTS title? If your answer is “Age of Empires II Definitive Edition”, we will rewrite the question: When was the last time you wanted to read a new original RTS franchise?
RTS games have been hit by a severe drought. A few notable topics did not even appear in 2020:
- Warcraft III revised
- Conquer the command and reset package
- Iron harvest
- Age III Limited Edition of Empires
Do you see a trend? Only one title (Iron Harvest) is really new and not a remaster or remake of the previous game.
Not all remakes are even credible
Not to mention, the only hope was 2020’s biggest disappointment. Hence the remake of “Warcraft III: Reformed” also called “Warcraft III: Refund” in German.
Not only was it worse than the old classic, but the original version could not run for any reason. In contrast to the mega-flop of Warcraft III, remakes of the Command & Conquer and Age of Empires series went smoothly.
Like the “limited edition” of “Age of Empires III”, “Command & Conquer ‘Remaster Collection” was well received by both fans, even enough to stand in the vast shadow of its predecessors. But these victories are exceptions to the steep downward trend.
Let’s look at the only new title in the list above: “Iron Harvest”. Although the player numbers were not so bad in the beginning, interest soon plummeted.
Can the 2021 category be saved?
Is there really an upward trend in 2021? For now, the answer is no. The only notable RDS ever released was “Strong Place: Warriors”. Unfortunately, the title of the latest franchise goes to the middle without ambition. Buggy and disinterested, it still chases the magic that the original Stronghold had, but failed to capture a part of it.
There are only a few candidates left who can ensure the growth of the RTS category. Most of the hopes so far are on the upcoming “Age of Empires IV”. No release date is yet known, but RTS fans have high hopes. The AoE rights were last released 10 years ago.
The glow of hope
The salvation of the genre may come from another, unexpected corner. About six months ago a new studio caused a huge stir. Studio Dreamhaven has reunited many of the former employees of Blizzard who played a key role in the development of Warcraft and Starcraft.
Although nothing has been announced yet, expectations for the new studio are already high. Senior game developers need to see if they can meet these.
The scene is still alive
Although the eSports display is said to have struggled for the past few years, it is still active. StarCraft II still features newcomers such as Ricardo “Rainer” Romiti or French baby Freddie Clement “Clem” Desplanch.
Even in the Warcraft III scene, loyal fans are sticking with even more support to counter the poor management of the blizzard reform. Even the frozen age of imperial society has recently shown signs of life again and small rivalries have begun.