The Best Sega Saturn Strategy Games

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Despite being one of Sega's poorer performing consoles, the Sega Saturn had a lot to offer to gamers of the late '90s. Even though the console didn't perform well commercially, the Saturn offered players a great selection of excellent titles. The lack of widespread third-party support led to some of the most well-crafted third and first-party games of the era that many gamers missed out on. Now's your chance to catch up on these wonderful titles that have become cult-classics.

One genre that thrived in this era was the strategy genre. With the release of some of the best PC strategy games ever made, consoles had to keep up with the hype. Titles like Command & Conquer and Sim City 2000 were ported to the Saturn beautifully, giving console gamers the chance to play some of the best strategy titles ever. The Saturn also had some great original strategy games such as Iron Storm and Dragon Force.

Command & Conquer

The first game in this landmark series, Command & Conquer is a fantastic strategy game taking place in a world war between the Global Defense Initiative and the Brotherhood of Nod. In this war, both factions are fighting over an extremely valuable resource called Tiberium, which can power superweapons and unleash chaos upon the world. Players will control one of these factions in a world map which requires the player to build bases, develop new technologies, and recruit soldiers to your cause.

Each faction has its pros and cons, which balance out to create two distinct but equal playstyles. Command & Conquer received a lot of praise at the time, selling a total of 30 million copies. This title definitely deserves all the acclaim it received and is a must-play for strategy fans.

Dragon Force

An RTS developed by Sega for the Saturn, Dragon Force is an interesting strategy title that differs from most games of the era. The game perfectly mixes interesting RPG elements and RTS gameplay without becoming too confusing. The game takes place in the world of Legendra, where multiple factions are now at war. The player must traverse the world map and capture castles strewn about.

In combat, players control one of the generals and their troops in a side-scrolling battle. The general has special abilities and can control their troop formations. Dragon Force’s gameplay is some of the best of the era and a must-play for strategy and RPG fans.

The Horde

Originally a 3DO title, The Horde is a strange strategy title in which players must defend their town from the titular Horde. These monsters are constantly targeting your village, which requires the continual rebuilding of defenses and town buildings. The game is played in phases - defense and build - which allow the player time to create their defenses before the next attack. The actual defense phase incorporates hack and slash elements, which changes up the pace of the game nicely.

The Horde is an entertaining strategy title that contains ingredients from a few different genres to become one of the best on the platform and a must-play for retro game fans.

Sim City 2000

Sim City 2000 barely needs an introduction as it is easily one of the best city-building simulators and strategy games of the era. The game was known for including extremely detailed graphics for its release date and addictive gameplay.

In this title, the player must create a profitable and sustainable city, with the only way to get a game over being to run out of money. Many natural disasters can devastate your city throughout the game, meaning that the player will need money saved in order to recover. The level of strategy required is not necessarily apparent at the get-go, but the game can get really difficult the further the player progresses. Sim City 2000 is a classic title that every retro gamer should play.

Iron Storm

This Saturn exclusive is a World War II strategy game that allows players to control the path of the war and change history if they please. In Iron Storm, players can control either the United States, Nazi Germany, or Imperial Japan in their fight to control the world. The gameplay itself is similar to other hexagonal strategy titles, with players moving their units around tiles in order to gain an advantage. Each unit is customizable, offering real upgrades from World War II to give history fans some extra fun.

Iron Storm comes together to be a well-crafted strategy game for fans of the genre and history buffs alike, offering interesting parallel histories that players can explore through well-timed attacks and great unit cohesion.

Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness

Before World of Warcraft hit it big as one of the best-known MMOs of all time, Blizzard Entertainment released a series of strategy titles simply called Warcraft. The game takes place during a second war between Orcs and Humans, where Orc refugees have flooded Lordaeron and decided to take the subcontinent for themselves.

The gameplay is similar to that of Command & Conquer, where players must collect resources in order to construct defenses and train troops, which can then win territories. Each race has its own campaign, which offers a different take on the Second War while also providing new abilities for the players to have fun with. If you're looking for an in-depth RTS on the Saturn, Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness is one of the best.

  • Updated February 4, 2021