What is the best total war game?
We’ve played them all and put the top 3 in order below.
Each game has a full review so you can learn all about each game before you make a commitment to buy or play any of them.
Maybe our reviews can help you to decide for yourself which is the best total war game.
Total War Games Reviewed
1: Medieval 2 – Total War
In a few words, this game is awesome. As far as strategy games go, this is definitely one of the best!
The graphics are great and the story grabs your attention, as you are constantly keeping an eye on what your enemy is doing. If you don’t pay attention, they will break through your defences in no time and attack, so keep that guard up!
If you are looking for a game that you can complete in a few hours and move on to the next, this isn’t the game for you. It’s all about strategy; what you are going to do next, what you think your enemy may be planning and overall, conquering them and ruling the world!
This isn’t a hard game in the technical sense as the controls are quite simple. However, it does demand your attention, as you will soon notice if you let your guard down and they smash through your defences and steal your women!
You can choose to play from the side of a Christian and chose to obey or defy the pope or can choose to play from the side of a Muslim and wage a war upon the infidels. You will the build churches or mosques, depending on the side you choose.
I’d opt for the Christian side as you can then get the pope on your side and this is always helpful when he turns a blind eye to your actions! Also, remember, if he’s not on your side, he’s against you and therefore your enemy will benefit from this! You’re able to recruit priests, who then become cardinals. And if the pope dies, they’ll have the chance to become Pope. So you’ll want to keep the priests on side, so if the Pope does die, your side is still in favour!
You’ll have your men beside you whilst you wage a war on the enemy, using archers, cannons and catapults. You’ll also have your own negotiators, who you can send out to the enemy and arrange cease-fires or build alliances. You can send out your spies to gain vital information and can also invade your rivals and steal their wives!
You have access to your map of Europe, where you can keep an eye on your empire and plan your next assault. You can instruct your men to carry out necessary improvements to strengthen your defenses or plan your next attack, scoping for weaknesses in your enemy lines. It’s also possible to build roads to assist with the transport of your cargo and also improve the farmland so you’ve got enough food and can generate more money.
You can also build your empire through the takeover of towns and castles. Remember to keep troops stationed here or they will be taken over as soon as you turn your back. And you don’t want to lose your castles as this is where you can send your men for training and upgrade to equipment!
You’ll need to keep on top of things, as there are so many factors to consider. Are your crops being cared for and harvested for gold? Are your castles and towns protected? Do you have enough men to successfully win a battle? All going on at the same time. Obviously as you take over more and more of Europe, this can become a little hectic if you are not paying attention and your enemy will then take full advantage.
When you first start the game, you have five areas to conquer. Once you have completed the campaign, twelve more are unlocked which cover North African and the East. So you can spend even more time taking over!
Graphics And Audio
The graphics are great. It’s not like looking at a 2d plain map, you are looking at a 3D visualisation of your empire! You can witness thousands of warriors battling it out. Including cinematic moments when you one of the enemies have been knocked to the floor and your men deliver the final blow.
The audio is really well thought out. It ranges from subtle recordings whilst you are planning your move to booming action recordings when you are waging a war. The characters will also converse with you in an accent relevant to their nationality.
If you are looking for a strategic, action packed game, that will keep you on your toes and planning your next move, look no further.
1: Medieval 2 – Total War has been ranked number one in our search to find the best total war game.
2: Total War – Shogun 2
Similar to the first Total War, this game is also set in the Sengoku period of Japanese history. This game has narrowed its focus to a single geographical location and decreased the number of troop types.
You, as Clan Leader, are tasked with increasing the power of your own clan and conquering the opposition, to ultimately form a new shogunate.
The developers have really taken a lot of time to add incredible detail to the game. For example when you zoom in close, you can see the full-face demon mask of the warriors and the different weather effects are great especially in the rain.
The warriors accents are great, especially when they are screaming at their enemies. The music is well suited to the game and really atmospheric. They’ve done a great job on the small details, which make a big difference to gameplay.
There are two phases of the game. The first in which you manage your warriors and make decisions which takes time to play out. And the second, a real-time battle in which you had better be prepared for victory or could suffer a dismal defeat.
You need to take time to consider your actions in this game. Your actions affect how others judge you. Attacking an ally, for example, is a move to gain territory, however, will be seen as dishonourable and may affect your clan’s contentment.
Your alliances need to be solid or you will spend a lot of time repairing them, resulting in bad trade, loss of alliances and a hostile force!
Improved gameplay, detail and graphics result in a big thumbs up from me!
2: Total War – Shogun 2 has been ranked number two in our search to find the best total war game.
3: Rome: Total War
The graphics are awesome, bringing the battles to life, with such a real-life feel. It’s unlike anything I have witnessed previously within a PC game. You feel as though you have been teleported to the ancient battlefields and dumped in the midst of a huge conflict. Up to 10,000 warriors can be found battling it out on your screen at any one time!
This game makes you use your brain, as you need to carefully plan your next move and outwit your enemies. The campaign is centered on the battle to rule Rome.
You will start the game as one entity but as the story develops, the allied groups split into four and battle it out to gain control of Rome and over each other’s land. You will need to have built support in the form of territories before war breaks out. Start working on this from the off-set.
You will be given troops at the beginning of the game (enough to start invading your neighbours immediately). You’ll need to think about where you should be stationing your troops early on, so your neighbours don’t get cocky and try to take what is yours!
Stationing at river passes for example, will halt your enemy in their tracks. As would stationing troops in the forest for a surprise ambush. Capturing and maintaining cities is your main goal, so plan accordingly. This will help to increase your presence and grow your numbers.
You can defeat your enemies in the old-fashioned way – using siege weapons and breaking down their defenses before launching an attack. Or you can opt to starve them – which will lower their morale, so when you attack, they are more likely to defect to your side.
If you chose to defeat them, you get more money, however, this doesn’t increase your numbers at all. Don’t do too much damage to the cities, as you will have to repair once you take over!
Family is really important in this game. Everyone is essentially related, you are one huge family that then separate.
The leaders of your army are generals and governors. They all have their own traits (strengths and weaknesses). Some may have a strong command rating, but a weak diplomacy rating for example.
If your family members are selected for the important senate posts, they’ll gain influence and abilities. You need to therefore develop these skills, so they serve you well.
Family members, along with your spies and assassins can attract other important people, such as advisors, bodyguards and mentors. These people will of course affect your abilities and improve your hold. These people can protect your family as you grow.
Family members are also vital in the respect that they can serve as generals in your army. Generals are necessary for the successful leading of an army. Rushing into battle with an inexperienced general can result in a huge loss at battle and see whole branches of your family tree wiped out. This can be crippling. Plan well!
If you are short of governors, your cities will be taken over by the automanager – an appointed official who runs the city in your name. The automanager can be assigned priorities, such as constructing the building and units required. This will really help with your strategizing.
The map looks really realistic (rather than other titles that tend to look more like a board game) and the graphics are really high quality. The game makes you use your common sense and also plan your movements, whilst building your city and planning your take-over. Rome: Total War is a game not to be missed.
3: Rome: Total War has been ranked number three in our search to find the best total war game.