I've recently noticed some games emerging in a certain style for which I know of no name. I'm curious if there's any name for this style of gameplay - such a name will allow me to more efficiently search for more information about this genre.

I'm guessing it's some subgenre of strategy gaming.

General Game Description

  • 2D gameplay with a side-scrolling perspective.
  • Real-time (or mostly real-time) action.
  • You have a base at one edge of the map and the enemy has one at the other edge.
  • The winner is the first player to destroy the opponent's base.
  • You can create new units at your base. You have no control of these units. They will automatically advance towards the opponent's base, attacking any of the opponent's units on the way.
  • If a unit reaches the enemy's base, it starts attacking it.
  • The game may include other aspects like resource management (units cost resources that you get somewhere), special abilities (e.g. spells on a timer) or other special mechanics, but the core of the gameplay is choosing the correct unit composition and timing and letting those units do the work for you.

Example Games

  • You might also include the official blizzard SC2 Map "Starjeweled". – Raven Dreamer Feb 18 '12 at 22:45
  • @RavenDreamer I never played it, but if you have high confidence it fits with the others please do add it. I'm not surprised it exists, though - the very reason I'm asking this question is because I'm indeed noticing more and more of these games. – Oak Feb 18 '12 at 22:47
  • A lot of these I've seen are 'resourceless'. They tend to just have a certain time it takes to build a unit. It could be considered a resourceless RTS. – SaintWacko Feb 20 '12 at 18:02
  • 4
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because we do not support questions that ask to find terms that describe parts or characteristics of games – Wrigglenite Sep 20 '18 at 12:23
  • @Wrigglenite Can you link to the relevant meta policy? – Oak Sep 20 '18 at 14:07

The gameplay you described sounds a lot like a subgenre of Warcraft/StarCraft maps like Nexus Wars and Desert Strike. In StarCraft II, these are classified as "Tug Of War" maps by the in-game map browser.


These games ( like Swords&Soldiers or Steam Brigade ) still count as Real Time Strategy. I don't think that there is a specific subgenre for these games.


There doesn't appear to be a title assigned to these games in particular. I believe given their general focus on marching units single file, I would probably classify these games as "1-D real time strategy."


I tend to think of these style of games as PvP tower defense (even without the towers)

  • 1
    more like tower offense – Sentry Mar 7 '13 at 13:31

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