First Impressions

Nuke Them All


Release Date11 March, 2024 (EA)

Platform: Windows

Genre: RTS

By Chris Picone, 01 April 2024


Nuke Them All is a new real-time strategy game with a difference:  The developers have opted to remove the "boring" base-building elements.  The idea is that this allows you to focus solely on the strategic aspect of the game.  Now I've always enjoyed the base-building component of RTS games but they've also frequently made little sense to me, so I'm definitely down for checking out this innovative approach to the genre.

Step one when considering Nuke Them All is to ignore the developer's description of the game. This is neither old-school or "an RTS classic reborn" and it's weird they would claim that when its innovative implementation is what we're all here for.  Instead of base building, different sections of the map have buildings which automatically generate units for you on tick timers.  So at first the game is primarily a "capture the flag" where it's a race to claim as many sections as possible because the more you control, the more units you're generating.  You then control these units to attack around the map, trying to claim new sectors from the enemy - tough, as they're all defended with turrets and they're generating units constantly just like you are.  It's an interesting, fun, challenging concept.  Nuke Them All have opted for an artistic style which is somewhat unusual for the genre.  I don't know how to describe it exactly, except that it's the sort of graphics that would like right at home on any mobile phone game.  Which isn't to say it looks bad - other than a minor animation issue where the units look like they slide around the screen, I think it looks pretty fantastic. Especially the snow levels. But when you have those "mobile phone" graphics combined with everything in the game working on tick timers, it feels an awful lot more like a mobile idle/clicker game than it probably should. 

The verdict?  I want to love Nuke Them All.  It looks great and I love the idea behind it.  What I don't love, at the moment, is the execution.  It's possible that I'm just terrible at it but I suspect there are much larger balance issues currently. Having said that, the game's in Early Access and the developers have made a strong note on their Steam page that they're actively seeking player input to improve the game.  So for now I remain very hopeful and plan to revisit it down the track!