The Daily Grind: What’s the most awesome MMORTS title out there?

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Do you ever have one of those moments where somebody asks you something that’s just ever so slightly adjacent to your field of work and you feel like you should know the answer but you don’t? I ran into one of those this week when MOP’s Tyler asked the whole team what MMORTS titles out there are actually worth putting time into.

RTS games aren’t my thing (I prefer turn-based 4X if I’m gonna gonna get my strategery on, and really I’m just an MMORPG person first and foremost), so I’ve never really paid enough attention to the MMORTS genre to truly know which ones are really meaty and cunning vs. which ones are kinda just there to rifle through your wallet as quickly as possible before you figure out they’re trash. But I bet some of you have!

So help me out here, for Tyler’s sake – let’s give him a sampling of new things to dig into for Not So Massively and prove to him that they’re not all low-budget cash-grabs. What’s the most awesome MMORTS title out there? What’s really, truly worth the install?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!

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Not really any good MMORTS’s out. Was looking forward to the one Trion was supposed to put out something like 7-8 years ago, but it got canceled. Nothing else has really looked good . Everything is some kinda mobile cashgrab.

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I think I tried 80% of mmorts out there. Most are on mobile, all big names in rts, settlers, tribal wars, Travian, anno etc, with a few like stronghold kingdoms on pc.

The one thing they all have in commons is shameless pay-2-win mechanics, even more so, they are designed around the model of giving a hand full of big spenders the satisfaction of mopping up everyone else on the map. The rest of the players are like free to play critter npc’s. Probably because it is less expensive to have suckers playing for free to be fodder for the real customers than using AI to simulate.

I also played indie attempts that where not pay-2-win. They did not last long on the market.

Technologically speaking the best mmorts I have seen to date is the mobile Rise of Civilisations. That is as near to true mmorts as I have ever seen. But the level of P2W is also one of the highest I have ever seen. Pity, as I do think that game could ask for 10$ monthly sub.

And to complete this I would like to mention ikariam.
I played that game when it was in beta, and it was amazing.
Even if it has been more then 10 years since it is still second only to Rise of Civilisations, design wise.
It is the only mmorts, browser based where a battle could last days. Where troups actually cummulated in attacks on both sides and attacks took real time. Every 15 minutes there was a round tick, and each round only part of the troops died on both sides. And between rounds both sides could reinforce. And you could adjust what you sent.
Too bad it was ruined by greeted a couple of years later. Now the combat system is the same, but what is the point if anything can be done with money, faster more, no limit. The only strategy left is that of the bigger wallet.

Rodrigo Dias Costa

I Think Travian and Tribe Wars are the most classic ones and easier to recommend to fans of the genre. Stronghold Kingdoms is worth mentioning for being a bit different from the other two but AFAIK it’s also way less popular than them.


The only online MMORTS in this decade which could make me playing it for more than 30 minutes is Hades Star.

Unfortunately, there isn’t anything like XCom2, Banished or Jurassic World Evolution Online.

Rodrigo Dias Costa

Oh, I’ve seen this one on the Play Store. Maybe I’ll check later

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Jack Pipsam

Only one I really played and liked was Age of Empires Online, although that’s been dead for years (but there is an emulator!).

Slasher Zet

For anyone wondering, it’s Project Celeste:

Robert Basler

I’m building The Imperial Realm::Miranda the only single-sharded seamless open-world MMORTS. Getting the tech to work for this has been enormously difficult, which is probably why there are very few MMORTS games which are actually massively multiplayer. It was designed to be fun PvP rather than gankbox PvP with co-op PvE elements. It is still a work in-progress.

Kingdom Under Fire 2 is coming to the US in November after many years in development.

There’s also Starborne Sovereign Space


The only one I’ve ever played was Travian, which was enough for me to write off the whole genre. Not that the game per see was bad, but it showed me beyond a doubt that MMORTS games, by their very nature, include most of the elements that can make me dislike PvP.

(I’m talking about actual MMORTS games, mind; small scale RTS games that just happen to be always online with a lobby are, for me, a different thing altogether. Though I’m unlikely to play them anyway because I don’t see any point in needing an online connection for a small scale RTS game, which means I tend to disregard the ones that actually are always-online.)


Like others, can’t help you on this, literally don’t know the name or any MMORTS’s. Also, given how I define an MMO, I couldn’t even tell you if there genuinely are MMORTS’s out. My suspicion is there aren’t any, they’re just standard RTS’s that are played online with some vague player interaction thrown in. I hope I’m wrong though!

Daniel Miller

Well, KUF2 is a rts i played Taiwan version years ago and next month, English upon release.

Brown Jenkin

I’m curious, would Conqueror’s Blade count here? Certainly its not a traditional RTS, but then plenty of RTS aren’t exactly traditional RTS either. The game has tons of problems/flaws but its definitely an interesting take on a genre-bender.