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Golden Joysticks 2012: The nominees for Best Strategy...

Age of Empires? Civ V? ANNO 2070? The RTS goliaths go to war...

The HMV sponsored GamesMaster Golden Joystick Awards have arrived, and you're all invited to vote and win prizes here! Each week we'll be casting a beady eye over different categories, taking you through the prime contenders before leaving you savvy lot to duke it out in the comments section. This time around, we're talking strategy.

While Sim City preps itself for a reboot and Starcraft II dallies over an expansion, there's a natty niche here that needs filling. Will Shogun slice 'n dice its way to gory glory or might long-term underdogs like Anno and Tropico finally get their day in the sun? Prepare for some shocks in this 'un...

Age of Empires Online

Microsoft's venerable RTS has been reborn in Age of Empires: Online. Players can buy new civilisations and campaigns for real dosh, and use their special talents against other gamers.
Vote here!

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Unity of Command

The Eastern Front as you've never experienced it, combining clean, simplistic good looks with reams of unexpected depth. An intuitive experience for a new generation of budding strategists.
Vote here!

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Wargame: European Escalation

The Cold War just got real hot in this awesomely complex RTS with a dazzling array of tactical options and standout multiplayer. Properly unique in the pantheon of strategy titles.
Vote here!

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Crusader Kings 2

A dynasty simulator that ploughs through a decent chunk of the volatile Medieval era with great panache. Uncompromising politics and a thoughtful tone mean is one for the true strategy hardcore.
Vote here!

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Might and Magic: Heroes VI

A genuinely epic, turn-based treat that treads confidently in the formidable footfalls of its predecessors - especially with the tangible moral choices posed by its 'Tears and Blood' mechanic.
Vote here!

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Civilisation V: Gods and Kings

Civ V seems a long time ago now, but this gigantic update saw dynamic fresh life breathed into a modern classic. Religion and espionage were top of the agenda; there's even a steampunk scenario!
Vote here!

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Tropico 4: Modern Times

El Presidente and Tropico blast into the 21st century for this banana republic 'em up expansion with a dictatorial twist. Complex mechanics are offset by a great sense of humour!
Vote here!

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Total War: Shogun 2 - Fall of the Samurai
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