Fans of pointing, clicking and pondering are in for a smorgasbord of treats in 2020. There are so many great strategy games coming, in fact, that I've to shunt a fair few other games off into different 'Most Anticipated' categories in order to fit them all in. Age of Empires 4 and Humankind, you are not forgotten. Even with those big-hitters missing, there are some heinously good strategy games coming, both real-time and turn-based, covering everything from medieval warfare to mafia hits and dropping James Bond in a shark tank.
So without further ado, here are five of the most anticipated strategy games coming to PC in 2020...
There's a pecking order in the strategy world, from the dabblers right on up to arch strategists. Those who like a little click around and watching the world burn, up to those who stroke their beard into a fine wisp as they contemplate marrying their son of to their brother in the hope it can bring peace with France. Crusader Kings 3 is for those latter people, although Paradox Interactive hopes dramatically improved onboarding can help convert more dabblers to become beard ticklers. This is medieval history in your hands, ready to be shaped and rewritten.
Turn-based tactical strategy probably isn't the first thing you think of when you hear John Romero's name. The legendary co-founder of id Software was designer on some of the most iconic first-person shooters in history, including Wolfenstein 3D, Doom and Quake. He's changing things up Empire of Sin though, an XCOM-meets-mafia turn-based tactics game set in Prohibition-era Chicago. Hustle, bustle, and elbow your way to the top of the organise crime scene, and then do anything it takes to make it stays that way.
Evil Genius was always one of my favourites from my younger years. It's a riff on Dungeon Keeper at heart, sticking to the bad guy motif by putting players as a criminal mastermind who must contract a secret island base and fend off the Forces of Justice. Evil Genius 2: World Domination welcomes it back after all these years, this time with even more elaborate traps, ruses, and deviously painful devices. You can kidnap and sell the British Royal Family (Prince Andrew's probably not worth much though) and literally bake Alaska.
Dormant for a good few years, the legendary civilization-building strategy series The Settlers is hoping to make an emphatic return. Details are, still, sadly a little scarce, but The Settlers is already very easy on the eye. It’s like a scented candle and a hot bath in digital form, tasking players with plopping down houses and fields and lumberjacks, of course, mixed in with the odd skirmish. For strategy fans like myself who prefer building and management to fast-paced combat, The Settlers is one of the biggest PC exclusives to keep an eye on next year.
There's nothing like a spot of, erm, colonising to while away the hours. The Port Royale franchise has always been unfortunately competing with Anno over the years but it's nevertheless an intriguing enough strategy game in its own right. Port Royale 4 will allow players to join the colonial powers of either Spain, England, France, or the Netherlands, sailing out into the 17th century Caribbean in the hopes of conquering lands, plundering treasure, and all sorts of other naughty stuff that probably shouldn't have happened.
Get voting for which game you're most hyped for, and if it's a game not mentioned here then be sure to let everyone else know what it is in the comments section below!