User Score
9.2

Universal acclaim- based on 137 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 2 out of 137

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  1. tro
    Oct 1, 2007
    10
    TA was, and continues to be the most innovative RTS until recently. Physics, terrain, weather, theatres of war, and map intel all contribute to TA's virbrant gameplay. Intuitive interface, unit AI, and order queue makes your massive army a breeze to command. The fully orchestrated soundtrack, 3D units, and fiery explosions brings the battle to life. The original game's massive TA was, and continues to be the most innovative RTS until recently. Physics, terrain, weather, theatres of war, and map intel all contribute to TA's virbrant gameplay. Intuitive interface, unit AI, and order queue makes your massive army a breeze to command. The fully orchestrated soundtrack, 3D units, and fiery explosions brings the battle to life. The original game's massive unit count is also supplemented by an equally loaded expansion as well as endless fan made content available for download. Expand
  2. JesseW.
    May 28, 2006
    10
    I have been playing this game for years and it still keeps me entertained. This is truly the best game ever made. I'm sure I'll still be playing it in 10 years. Just goes to show the you don't need top graphics to enjoy a game, this one is all about gameplay and replayability. The graphics are fantastic, for 1997, so you'll have to look past that and see the beauty I have been playing this game for years and it still keeps me entertained. This is truly the best game ever made. I'm sure I'll still be playing it in 10 years. Just goes to show the you don't need top graphics to enjoy a game, this one is all about gameplay and replayability. The graphics are fantastic, for 1997, so you'll have to look past that and see the beauty inside. Total Annihilation is sent from the heavens by angels who like to destroy things with robots. Expand
  3. Ilja
    Dec 9, 2005
    10
    Excellent RTS, and still without equal in so many ways. Its true, flaws in the unit balance emerged as player tactics developed, but overall, this is still far ahead of anything else in the genre. The range of innovations, from the high level strategical nuke/antinuke and air wars, to the tight control of unit behaviour during minor skirmishes, to the overall epic scale of the game, place Excellent RTS, and still without equal in so many ways. Its true, flaws in the unit balance emerged as player tactics developed, but overall, this is still far ahead of anything else in the genre. The range of innovations, from the high level strategical nuke/antinuke and air wars, to the tight control of unit behaviour during minor skirmishes, to the overall epic scale of the game, place it still without equal. One of the most engaging, deep and lasting games produced to date. Expand
  4. Ruudie
    May 16, 2009
    10
    Simply put, Total Annihilation (+ Core Contingency expansion pack) is the best rts ever. Large scale land, sea and air warfare while building a giant base from which to launch your nuke strike or blast away with long-range artillery. Make armies of hundreds of units and sent them to a certain death against layers and layers of defence. Or play on a small map and micro every single unit Simply put, Total Annihilation (+ Core Contingency expansion pack) is the best rts ever. Large scale land, sea and air warfare while building a giant base from which to launch your nuke strike or blast away with long-range artillery. Make armies of hundreds of units and sent them to a certain death against layers and layers of defence. Or play on a small map and micro every single unit for maximum efficiency. An economy model that's very easy to learn but incredibly hard to master. Real 3d units on a real 3d map with real physics. Hundreds of very different maps and many more created by the community. Concerning gbarules2999 saying this game is about fast clicking with no strategy involved: this is a REAL TIME strategy game, so yes its about doing stuff fast (which is a good thing). But its also a real time STRATEGY game, meaning its impossible to beat your opponent if you dont have a better strategy. Furthermore when executing your strategy, you'll need tactics to make it work: yes its easy to move many units at once, but to make the most out of them its necessary to manage them individually. But whatever, sounds to me like you only played the campaign. And altough the campaign or a skirmish against the ai can be quite entertaining, i must say it's a pretty bad basis for judging this game. Its the multiplayer where Total Annihilation shines. Expand
  5. Nov 15, 2012
    10
    Amazing, there are no other words to describe this game and its expansions. If you are an rts gamer through and through and have not played this game then you then you are missing out big time. I have played all the old rts games and a lot of the new ones and none of them compare to this. This is how i rate the game Music/Sound 10/10 unit diversity 10/10 graphics for the time 10/10Amazing, there are no other words to describe this game and its expansions. If you are an rts gamer through and through and have not played this game then you then you are missing out big time. I have played all the old rts games and a lot of the new ones and none of them compare to this. This is how i rate the game Music/Sound 10/10 unit diversity 10/10 graphics for the time 10/10 originality 10/10 game play 10/10. This game has next to no flaws and i rate it the best rts ever. Expand
  6. TylerF.
    Jan 28, 2008
    10
    This is a true classic. Even today, TEN YEARS after it was originally released, the graphics look great on new PCs. I still have the original discs and the Core Contingency expansion pack. This game pioneered RTS games. All the modern RTS games still draw from TA...there have been few major features introduced since (in a decade of refinement!) other than realistic graphics. I still get a This is a true classic. Even today, TEN YEARS after it was originally released, the graphics look great on new PCs. I still have the original discs and the Core Contingency expansion pack. This game pioneered RTS games. All the modern RTS games still draw from TA...there have been few major features introduced since (in a decade of refinement!) other than realistic graphics. I still get a kick out of building up massive bases in TA, and the unit diversity as well as fantastic overall interface and incredible custom soundtrack just make this game a timeless masterpiece that can be played for years to come. I wonder if any game studio would be willing to take on the daunting task of (official) Total Annihilation 2? Revise the graphics, add new storylines, etc..but keep the heart of the game intact! Expand
  7. ShawnS.
    Jan 24, 2007
    10
    Best RTS ever. Introduced the genre.
  8. gbarules2999T
    Sep 19, 2007
    5
    The game plays great and has a nice presenation (coupled with an amazing soundtrack). Too bad the rest of the game is linear and boring as heck. Being a war of attrition, tyhe game never reatches the status that makes StarCraft look up and think. TA is fun, but it's not a strategy game. It's an action game. Very little thought goes into selecting all your units and pressing The game plays great and has a nice presenation (coupled with an amazing soundtrack). Too bad the rest of the game is linear and boring as heck. Being a war of attrition, tyhe game never reatches the status that makes StarCraft look up and think. TA is fun, but it's not a strategy game. It's an action game. Very little thought goes into selecting all your units and pressing attack, and no matter how nice it looks and plays, that very fact makes the game aged and whithered on the vine. That's why the AI sucks so bad, a well: the gameplay is not designed for thought process. It's for clicking really fast, and here is where you can see the beginning of the end for a lot opf modern franchises (like C+C). Unless you have the nostalgia, stay away. Expand
  9. LukeF.
    Jun 28, 2005
    10
    Best RTS ever, Core contingency best expansion ever. Wish that kingdoms lived up to the first. My favorite all time game. It had an innovative multiplayer system (boneyards) that i have yet to see matched. Perfect 10/10.
  10. Aug 20, 2013
    9
    Two factions the ARM and the CORE wage an ancient war for galactic dominance. The struggle between these factions have lasted to the brink of their own destruction. Only one side can be victorious, and you the player decides the fate of the other.

    Total Annihilation is personally one of my favorite games of all time, and possibly the most well built real-time strategy game ever
    Two factions the ARM and the CORE wage an ancient war for galactic dominance. The struggle between these factions have lasted to the brink of their own destruction. Only one side can be victorious, and you the player decides the fate of the other.

    Total Annihilation is personally one of my favorite games of all time, and possibly the most well built real-time strategy game ever designed. This game has innovated the possibilities of physical ballistics and how much the terrain itself could effect your war efforts. Using 3D graphics, environments, and physics, this itself was a new experience for the late 90s. The game's music is also something to be noted on, it's so far one of the greatest video game soundtracks up to date. Everything about the music was performed by a program, yet it still sounds like it was recorded by an orchestra. The replayability with this game is astounding, it is a game that you will never get bored with.

    An instant classic, and it does not feel dated after all of these years. The only complaint about this game is that it could have been perfect with a solid multiplayer.

    4.8/5
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  11. MarkoF.
    Apr 1, 2004
    10
    THE best RTS of all time. Total Annihilation is a classic, the pinnacle of Real Time Strategy, and for its time, one of the best games ever. Although not as popular and over shadowed by starcraft, Total Annihilation has maintaned an active community over the years by allowing extreme modability and 3rd party support. If you haven't played it yet, and love strategy games, this is a THE best RTS of all time. Total Annihilation is a classic, the pinnacle of Real Time Strategy, and for its time, one of the best games ever. Although not as popular and over shadowed by starcraft, Total Annihilation has maintaned an active community over the years by allowing extreme modability and 3rd party support. If you haven't played it yet, and love strategy games, this is a must buy and at least try, if you can find it. Expand
  12. JonnyB.
    Jul 8, 2006
    10
    My favorite PC game.
  13. Keus
    Jun 16, 2005
    10
    Great! * years old and still the best, until supreme commander of course.
  14. Tyler
    Aug 8, 2007
    10
    The best RTS out there to date...Amazingly advanced for its time, never gets old.
  15. AlD.
    Feb 19, 2005
    10
    Best RTS I played, my favorite strategy game. Tactical and realism still unsurpassed.
  16. IvarH.
    Oct 31, 2007
    10
    Total Annihilation... What to say? It's not only the best RTS game ever, but the best game ever as well.
  17. AngusL.
    Feb 16, 2007
    10
    The game that got me into gaming the best RTS game ever.
  18. [Anonymous]
    May 31, 2007
    9
    Excellent RTS, ambitious and innovative for its time, if a bit dated today.
  19. IanMcPherson
    Feb 5, 2008
    10
    Anyone who gives this game less than a 9 is out of their mind. Out of the many new RTS games comig out today, Total Annihilation beats them several times over, and to think it was made in 1997! If you ask me, Total Annihilation is one of those games that shattered the standards for almost all games of its type to come, sort of like Diablo.
  20. BlueFalcon
    Oct 27, 2004
    10
    This may be the best pc game of all time. The graphics, and gameplay still hold up well today.
  21. NicolasJ.
    Jul 23, 2004
    10
    This is the best RTS of all times hands down and my favorite game ever. Contrarily to StarCraft, which is unplayable on modern PCs (especially after getting used so Warcraft 3), this one gets even better on powerful PCs. Try it if you've never played it, it's an instant classic. Most videogames age, sometimes badly. But this one is the game that will never quit my PC.
  22. AdamS.
    Oct 31, 2005
    10
    Many of Total Annihilation's innovations have yet to be matched (eight years later and counting). Take notes game developers... this is what good RTS looks like.
  23. mikebare
    Dec 13, 2008
    10
    i'll be honest, i bought this game at dollar tree. now i know i would have gladly payed full price for it when it came out, because it's one of the most complex, innovative and enjoyable rts games ever made. it's just plain fun, a true game with the feeling of a total war (not the franchise 'Total War' lol).
  24. Oct 7, 2010
    10
    This game opened my eyes to the fun of creating sandbox style RTS with tons of units. This is responsible for many days of sleep deprivation, others mad that the phone line is tied up (dial-up), and excessive amount of money for fast PC to run it smoother.

    After some patches and new unit releases and ultimately when the Core Contingency expansion was released, all those issues in the past
    This game opened my eyes to the fun of creating sandbox style RTS with tons of units. This is responsible for many days of sleep deprivation, others mad that the phone line is tied up (dial-up), and excessive amount of money for fast PC to run it smoother.

    After some patches and new unit releases and ultimately when the Core Contingency expansion was released, all those issues in the past just became even more severe. That and hygiene and diet suffered--the house was being neglected and junk food became the primary choice of sustenance. No other game has done this to me. EverQuest comes close though.

    This led me to follow Chris Taylor to his other games, though SupCom FA is the only thing that has come close to recreating the experience of Total Annihilation. Got to love the old MPlayer crowd. TEN was cool for rankings, though I didn't do as well as I thought I should've (1900s). Heat was nice for casual games, but ELITE clan battles were pretty intense. Only remember Lazeroo and (can only think of a bear for some reason). I was always coming up with crafty stuff like Rapier rush comm snipes and was accused of cheating on more than one occasion. The truly good players focused on tactical micro such as early bombing runs on low resource maps like Coast to Coast. I always did well with macro, spamming the heck out of Hawks, Vamps, nukes, artillery, etc on a such a large scale...

    Ahh, memories.
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  25. Feb 25, 2011
    10
    I'm surprised so little is said about this game, the amount of mods that were available and the amount of fun I had playing this game is crazy. Even 13 years after its release, and I haven't had as much fun with any other RTS, not even SC2! TA is great by itself, but when mods are added, the gameplay changes so much, so many more units are made it's insane. Even the graphics are good,I'm surprised so little is said about this game, the amount of mods that were available and the amount of fun I had playing this game is crazy. Even 13 years after its release, and I haven't had as much fun with any other RTS, not even SC2! TA is great by itself, but when mods are added, the gameplay changes so much, so many more units are made it's insane. Even the graphics are good, explosions are awesome, they feel so much more intense then in all other strategy games. This is easily one of the best games of all time. Expand
  26. Mar 9, 2011
    10
    Sweet mother of god, this game is marvelous. Yes, it is a bit aged in the graphic department, but it makes it up a hundred times by the gameplay. I only picked it up recently, but I didn't have so much fun since the classic rts games from westwood of old. Add to that really nice pathfinding and unit behavior, bullets and missiles being actual physical obiects with calculated trajectories,Sweet mother of god, this game is marvelous. Yes, it is a bit aged in the graphic department, but it makes it up a hundred times by the gameplay. I only picked it up recently, but I didn't have so much fun since the classic rts games from westwood of old. Add to that really nice pathfinding and unit behavior, bullets and missiles being actual physical obiects with calculated trajectories, great music, atmosphere and two buckets of awesome, and you get this game. Expand
  27. Aug 19, 2011
    10
    time and time again I compare more recent RTS games to this, and it is still far more enjoyable than almost all. the graphics are dated, the storyline is borderline non-existent, and the AI players are fairly terrible. but it (still) has some of the best unit AI (queue up orders and customise stances), true 3 dimensional GAMEPLAY (no shooting through hills, artillery and ballistictime and time again I compare more recent RTS games to this, and it is still far more enjoyable than almost all. the graphics are dated, the storyline is borderline non-existent, and the AI players are fairly terrible. but it (still) has some of the best unit AI (queue up orders and customise stances), true 3 dimensional GAMEPLAY (no shooting through hills, artillery and ballistic trajectories matter-something that is SEVERELY LACKING in even current RTS) and what was a very active mod community. hundreds of units to a side (as opposed to maybe 10 or 15 in star/war-craft, many, many different units, unit types, weapons even in the un-modded game, and it is a wonderful LAN game, especially with (now) older computers. Collapse
  28. Sep 18, 2011
    10
    I had to pop over here and give this old title it's well deserved 10. I can't even believe how good this game still is when it's almost 15 years old. If there's an RTS you want to play with great units, balance and economy then this is it. There's even been a new engine (spring RTS) built with this game in mind, and you can download it for free! I don't know what else I can say other thanI had to pop over here and give this old title it's well deserved 10. I can't even believe how good this game still is when it's almost 15 years old. If there's an RTS you want to play with great units, balance and economy then this is it. There's even been a new engine (spring RTS) built with this game in mind, and you can download it for free! I don't know what else I can say other than I'm a fan of a lot of RTS games but this is the king of them all. Expand
  29. Dec 16, 2011
    10
    This game is a multiplayer action game. D-gun enemies into flying shards of burning metal, and construct that vehicle factory while surfacing from water to deploy fast Flash light tanks to immediately attack your enemy while bombers and fighters are battling for supremacy on the sky. This game is truly epic and deep. Playability 10. AI not so good but campaigns are well built. You canThis game is a multiplayer action game. D-gun enemies into flying shards of burning metal, and construct that vehicle factory while surfacing from water to deploy fast Flash light tanks to immediately attack your enemy while bombers and fighters are battling for supremacy on the sky. This game is truly epic and deep. Playability 10. AI not so good but campaigns are well built. You can build your own AI though. Over the internet 10 players can play simultaneously with a total of 10000 units on the field. Massive long range artillery will shell the battlefield while nukes blast away at wreckage over which high energy lasers are targeting enemy mechas and battle-vehicles. Expand
  30. Jun 13, 2012
    10
    Nothing quite like it, before or since. Massive RTS with huge replayability value; add to that the sheer amount of customisation that can be done (the mods, the extra units, maps, etc which are all easily downloadable) and you've got a game of legend.
  31. Jun 19, 2013
    9
    Oh my goodness. It's been more than thirteen years since I last played this game. When I found out they were making Supreme Commander essentially a modern reboot of Total Annihilation I may or may not have had to change my shorts... anyway, I am a big RTS gamer and I loved TA because of the shift of emphasis from a balance of resource gathering, unit building, and fighting to moreOh my goodness. It's been more than thirteen years since I last played this game. When I found out they were making Supreme Commander essentially a modern reboot of Total Annihilation I may or may not have had to change my shorts... anyway, I am a big RTS gamer and I loved TA because of the shift of emphasis from a balance of resource gathering, unit building, and fighting to more towards unit building and fighting.

    While I appreciate the resource gathering element of RTS games, because yes it does add another layer of complexity, I just want to get to the action. Give me my units and give me the terrain and I will deploy them how I see fit to best win. Did I mention I don't really like waiting around too long?

    There is of course still a resource element in that you need to manage mass and energy, but those are pretty much infinite/self-produced and that was another awesome thing about it. The best part of the game for me? The ability to speed up your production/building process by having multiple drones or your commander help out.
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  32. Apr 8, 2014
    10
    This was a fantastic game in it's day. I grew up with this and still regard it as a fantastic game even after the many games I've played thereafter. It set the bar for future games. Even silly things like 100 stacked construction planes made the game awesome. Almost as awesome as being the guy who blows them all up with an AE shot. Played this on a 200mhz and it's in my heart and soul forever.
  33. Feb 1, 2014
    8
    Ahead of its time, and utilizing a unique resource model that monitored rate of resource gathering as well as total reserves, allowing for deficit spending of previously gathered surplus. However as officially released it did suffer from key flaws that reduce its score. The developer clearly had a bias in favor of the ARM faction, as there are many CORE units in critical roles that areAhead of its time, and utilizing a unique resource model that monitored rate of resource gathering as well as total reserves, allowing for deficit spending of previously gathered surplus. However as officially released it did suffer from key flaws that reduce its score. The developer clearly had a bias in favor of the ARM faction, as there are many CORE units in critical roles that are clearly inferior whereas the few units that CORE has an advantage over the ARM are in less vital roles. There are also a lot of redundant or useless units that sound nice in theory but are obsoleted in competitive play by far more cost efficient units or units that require less micro-management. Expand
  34. Sep 10, 2014
    10
    The grandfather of RTS, the benchmark for everything that has and will follow in the genre, a masterpiece.

    Few can argue that even with the nostalgia goggles taken off that this is one of the finest games ever to steal money from our wallets. But enough with the compliments, lets explain why this game was superb from the ground up. Resource gathering, rather than the generic
    The grandfather of RTS, the benchmark for everything that has and will follow in the genre, a masterpiece.

    Few can argue that even with the nostalgia goggles taken off that this is one of the finest games ever to steal money from our wallets.

    But enough with the compliments, lets explain why this game was superb from the ground up.

    Resource gathering, rather than the generic "pool" you are required to upkeep your 'economy' or 'eco' for short in metal and energy. This dynamic system which is drained and restored at the same time will allow you to build and queue many units as their cost is deducted from your stockpile over the course of their build time, if you run out the build time slows and if not it leaves you free to construct all the more units. Monitoring this economy is key to success and the glorious thing about it is that attacking your enemies metal extractors/generators can directly harm their ability to inflict pain on you.

    The trick is to maintain that eco while ensuring your opponent cannot do the same, real time STRATEGY. Unfortunately for you if you do not use this advantage to wipe your enemy out there is a strong chance that the wreckage left from the battle by destroyed buildings/units can also be extracted for resources, you are thus feeding the enemy which again is another thing to think about.

    The combat itself is fantastic and is supplemented by an amazing score by Jeremy Soule, the guy behind the OST of skyrim/oblivion. Vehicles explode leaving wreckage and flying debris going everywhere, (debris that can actually DAMAGE nearby units!), endgame final tier units and artillery cannons that can fire across the map, nukes... anti nukes? I can leave the imagination to picture that while trying to keep all your buildings switched on (yes, running out of power means a lot of buildings will not work).

    The music also changes from track to track depending on your situation in game, during the build phase you get some eerie foreboding music, when a fight starts the orchestral stuff kicks in and when the battle is done with unit wreckage strewn across the map you get a nice slow spooky song to go with your build units collecting resources from the dead. You can also switch that off and play what you want when you want it, put the game disc in a CD player to just play the music, boot the game and replace the CD with a DIFFERENT music CD and play that music?

    It has two campaigns for both factions, the Arm and the Core. Lots of mods are available to add new units and even lift the unit cap from 200 to whatever you feel like. The beautiful thing is that it is still actively played today and many servers are available to duke it out online.

    This came out back in 1997, you could probably pick it up for peanuts or find it online to download.

    While I do not feel my words do it justice it is definitely worth taking the time to play it, especially if you enjoyed SupCom.
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  35. Sep 22, 2014
    10
    Its my favourite RTS ever. Innovative, with great music, campaign, lot of units, tactics, mods and everything. "I am imba" commander and climate of the game that is so addictive.
    Graphics after 17 years (!) are still good, thats really hard to believe how they did it.

    You MUST play this game!
  36. Dec 1, 2014
    10
    When I discovered this game, I was playing hide and go seek as a kid. the only reason I can't play now is my PC has a x64 driver witch is not supported ):
  37. Mar 18, 2015
    7
    probably the best RTS game - until supreme commander came. especially when you compare it to newer games the AI and poor map construction completely let down the entire concept of the game. also, if you're going to actually play it you need to ramp up the speed to avoid 10 hour skirmishes.
  38. Aug 19, 2011
    0
    time and time again I compare more recent RTS games to this, and it is still far more enjoyable than almost all. the graphics are dated, the storyline is borderline non-existent, and the AI players are fairly terrible. but it (still) has some of the best unit AI (queue up orders and customise stances), true 3 dimensional GAMEPLAY (no shooting through hills, artillery and ballistictime and time again I compare more recent RTS games to this, and it is still far more enjoyable than almost all. the graphics are dated, the storyline is borderline non-existent, and the AI players are fairly terrible. but it (still) has some of the best unit AI (queue up orders and customise stances), true 3 dimensional GAMEPLAY (no shooting through hills, artillery and ballistic trajectories matter-something that is SEVERELY LACKING in even current RTS) and what was a very active mod community. hundreds of units to a side (as opposed to maybe 10 or 15 in star/war-craft, many, many different units, unit types, weapons even in the un-modded game, and it is a wonderful LAN game, especially with (now) older computers. Collapse
Metascore
86

Generally favorable reviews - based on 10 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 10
  2. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. Total Annihilation lacks one critical element that would have put it on my all-time list, and that involves immersion. In other words, the storyline and between-mission cinematics (which were somewhat lacking) did not suck me in as C&C did.
  2. If you managed to afford that high-end system then treat yourself to a game that will keep you hooked for some time to come and that will have your friends' jaws dropping in awe. It's a fresh game and a deserved GDR Gold winner. The real-time ante has been well and truly upped.
  3. An impressive contender in the real-time strategy genre. An easy-to-use interface, coupled with intelligent AI, establishes the game as one of the best of its kind.