Top World War II Video Game Series

01
of 23

Top World War II Video Game Series

Screenshot from Company of Heroes 2

Sega

The World War II setting has been a popular setting since the early days of computer and video games. Over the years there have been many series that have started with the World War II and have turned into blockbuster video game franchises. The list that follows is a list of some of the best World War II game series franchises that have been released for the PC. They include real-time strategy games, first person shooters, turn-based strategy and ​other genres. All World War II video game series listed here have at least two games set during WW2 but they may have moved away from the setting since then.

02
of 23

'Company of Heroes' Series

Screenshot from Company of Heroes 2

Sega

First Release: 2006
Latest Release: 2013

"Company of Heroes" is a series of World War II real-time strategy games developed by Relic Entertainment exclusively for the PC. The first title, "Company of Heroes," was released in 2006 by published by THQ and received critical acclaim and is still regarded as one of the best and highest rated PC games. It is set during the invasion and liberation of Western Europe and contains both a single player campaign and competitive multiplayer modes.

The initial game was followed up with two stand-alone expansions "Opposing Fronts" in 2007 and "Tales of Valor" in 2009, but of which introduced new factions, units, maps and campaign missions. "Company of Heroes Online" was released in 2010 as a stand-alone free 2 play game but never made it out of Beta. It was subsequently canceled in 2011. Rights to the "Company of Heroes" franchise and Relic Entertainment were sold to Sega in early 2013 after THQ went bankrupt. Relic and Sega then released "Company of Heroes 2" in 2013 which moved the series to the Eastern Front with German and Russian factions. There have been a number of downloadable content packs released for "Company of Heroes 2," three of which are listed here and add new factions, maps and/or campaign missions.

'Company of Heroes' World War II Games

03
of 23

'Call of Duty' Series

Call of Duty

 Screenshot

First Release: 2003
Latest Release: 2008

The "Call of Duty" franchise got its start in 2003 on the PC with a World War II first-person shooter. The series has grown into a multi-billion dollar franchise but it has also moved away from the World War II setting with the last release being "Call of Duty World at War" released in 2008. The original "Call of Duty" was also the first game developed by Infinity Ward, a development company that was made up of a number of developers who had worked on "Medal of Honor: Allied Assault" for Electronic Arts.

"Call of Duty" set itself apart from other WW2 FPS titles from the early 2000s by having three separate campaigns that put players in control of different characters from the US, British and Soviet armies. "Call of Duty" was followed up by an expansion pack "United Offensive" which added a short single player story and enhanced the multiplayer component adding new, larger maps, new weapons, and an in-game ranking system. The multiplayer component became extremely successful and is considered one of the reasons behind the surge in popularity of the series. "Call of Duty 2" was released in 2005, like its predecessor it included three different campaigns told from the perspective on the Soviet, British and American armies as well as a competitive multiplayer component that introduced new maps and gameplay elements.

"Call of Duty World at War" has been the last "CoD" game set in World War II to be released, developed by Treyarch Interactive, it is the prequel to the "Call of Duty: Black Ops" series. Like the first two "CoD" titles, it features multiple single player campaigns and features gameplay in the Pacific Theater of operations. The multiplayer component for "Call of Duty World at War" added leveling to the mix and it was also the first "CoD" game to feature Nazi Zombies.

'Call of Duty' World War II Games

04
of 23

'Wolfenstein' Series

Wolfenstein: The New Order
Wolfenstein: The New Order Screenshot.

Bethesda Softworks

First Release: 1981
Latest Release: 2014

The "Wolfenstein" series has the distinction to be one of the longest running series from the first to latest release. In "Wolfenstein's" case, there were two gaps of eight and nine years respectively between some releases. The first two titles with the Wolfenstein name, "Castle Wolfenstein" and "Beyond Castle Wolfenstein" bear little resemblance to the other titles in the series. Both are two-dimensional action/adventure games where players control an unnamed hero as they fight their way through various levels of the castle to find secret plans and escape. "Castle Wolfenstein" was first released for the Apple II and then later ported to MS-DOS becoming very successful. It is considered to be the first video game with a World War II setting and is also credited with popularizing the setting.

The first eight-year break in the "Wolfenstein" series came from 1984 and until 1992 when "Wolfenstein 3D" was released by id Software. "Wolfenstein 3D" is a remake of the original "Castle Wolfenstein" as a first-person shooter and is regarded by many as launching the popular first-person shooter genre. It also introduces us to B.J. Blazkowicz, the protagonist that is featured in every "Wolfenstein" game that followed. Spear of Destiny followed up "Wolfenstein 3D" as a prequel where BJ Blazkowicz must obtain the Spear of Destiny from the Nazi's.

After another nine-year hiatus, the series was rebooted with "Return to Castle Wolfenstein" in 2001. In this version, BJ Blazkowicz has uncovered a secret plan by the Nazi's SS Paranormal division to win the war. It is his job to return to the castle and foil this plan. "Return to Castle Wolfenstein" was both a commercial and critical success and was followed up with "Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory" which was planned as an expansion to "Return to Castle Wolfenstein," but was later changed and released as a freeware standalone multiplayer title.

In more recent years the series has seen three releases; 2009's "Wolfenstein" is a direct sequel to Return to Castle Wolfenstein where B.J. Blazkowicz continues the fight against the SS Paranormal Division. The series jumped beyond the traditional World War II setting with 2014's The New Order which is set in an alternative 1960s where Nazi Germany won the war. The most recent The Old Blood is re-imaging of "Return to Castle Wolfenstein" with some of the same storyline and plots.

'Wolfenstein' Games

05
of 23

'Brothers In Arms' Series

Brothers In Arms Screenshot

Screenshot 

First Release: 2005
Latest Release: 2008

"Brothers In Arms" is a series of squad-based tactical first-person shooters where players control the main character and issues various orders/commands to squad mates. The series also has the distinction of being based on historical events using characters based on everyday soldiers who fought during World War II. The first game in the series, "Brothers In Arms: Road to Hill 30" tells the true story of the 502nd Parachute Infantry Regiment of the 101st Airborne Division during Mission Albany of Operation Neptune. The story follows Sergeant Matt Baker and covers the first week or so of fighting after the D-Day landings.

The second game in the series follows the same storyline starting with the link up of the 82nd and 101st Airborne divisions. players once again control Matt Baker who is now in command of the 2nd squad, 3rd platoon. Missions are based on the liberation and defense of Carentan. The latest game to be released in the "Brothers In Arms" series was 2008's Hell's Highway. This game once again puts players in the role of Matt Baker who is now a Staff Sergeant and follows the 101st Airborne Division and their role in Operation Market Garden.

'Brothers In Arms' World War II Games

06
of 23

'Medal of Honor' Series

Medal of Honor Series
Medal of Honor Series.

Electronic Arts

First Release: 2002
Latest Release: 2007

The "Medal of Honor" series was the first blockbuster video game franchise that was set during World War II. The series got its start on the original PlayStation console with "Medal of Honor" in 1999 and then moved over to the PC in 2002 with "Medal of Honor: Allied Assault" that was set in Western Europe from D-Day and the invasion of Normandy. That game had two expansion packs and spawned two sequels, "Pacific Assault" released in 2004 and set in the Pacific theater of operations and 2007's "Medal of Honor: Airborne" that puts players in the role of a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne.

The series has since been rebooted and has moved away from the WW2 setting to a modern military/near future setting in 2010's "Medal of Honor" and 2012's "Medal of Honor: Warfighter."

'Medal of Honor' World War II Games

07
of 23

'Red Orchestra' Series

Red Orchestra: Heroes of Stalingrad Screenshot

 Screenshot

First Release: 2006
Latest Release: 2013

"Red Orchestra" is a series of tactical first-person shooter games set during World War II. The first title in the series, "Red Orchestra: Ostfront 41-45," is based on an Unreal Tournament full modification named "Red Orchestra: Combined Arms." It is set on the Eastern European front and centers around the fighting between the Soviet and German militaries. The game is mostly a multiplayer game with a short single player practice mode and it is known for its realism with regards to movement, simulation of being wounded, bullet drop and ballistics and much more.

The second game in the series "Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad" focuses on the Battle of Stalingrad and has a single-player campaign and multiplayer modes. It also features the same type of realism elements of the first game as well as a new feature such as a cover system, blind firing and more. "The Rising Storm" expansion is a full modification that moves the game to the Pacific Theater with fighting between American and Japanese forces.

'Red Orchestra' World War II Games

08
of 23

'Hearts of Iron' Series

Hearts of Iron III Screenshot

Paradox Interactive

First Release: 2002
Latest Release: 2015

The "Hearts of Iron" series is a series of grand strategy games that cover virtually every aspect of the nation management during World War II. Each release in the series has upgraded and expanded upon the amount of detail, graphics, AI and game mechanics. Players select a nation to control and will manage technology research, make economic decisions such as trade pacts, diplomatic alliances and treaties, military decisions and much more. "Hearts of Iron II" and "Hearts of Iron III" have further expanded on the detail and gameplay with each title having multiple expansion packs that added different aspects such as alternative history, nuclear weapons and much more. The games are played from a world map view that has been divided into thousands of territories that players managed, defend and conquer in real time. The fourth full title is scheduled for release in the fall of 2015 and is sure to bring additional features to World War II nation management to your desktop.

'Hearts of Iron' World War II Games

  • "Hearts of Iron" (2002)
  • "Hearts of Iron II" (2005)
  • "Hearts of Iron II: Doomsday" (2006)
  • "Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon" (2007)
  • "Hearts of Iron II: Iron Cross" (2010)
  • "Arsenal of Democracy" (2010)
  • "Hearts of Iron III" (2009)
  • "Hearts of Iron III: Semper Fi" (2010)
  • "Hearts of Iron III: For the Motherland" (2011)
  • "Darkest Hour: A Hearts of Iron Game" (2011)
  • "Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour" (2012)
  • "Hearts of Iron IV" (2015)
09
of 23

'Codename: Panzers' Series

Codename: Panzers Phase One Screenshot

 Screenshot

First Release: 2004
Latest Release: 2005

The "Codename: Panzers" series of World War II real-time strategy games has just two games with no expansions that are set during World War II. The games were developed by Hungarian developer StormRegion, the same company behind Rush For Berlin. In "Codename Panzer's" players manage groups of troops, artillery, tanks, and other vehicles in an attempt to capture certain mission objectives. Both games have three single player campaigns and multiplayer game modes. Phase One has a German, Soviet and Western Allies campaigns while Phase Two features an Axis, Western Allies, and Yugoslavian Partisans campaigns.

A third game in the series was in 2009 titled "Codename: Panzers - Cold War," but as the title suggests the setting for that game starts in 1949, after the end of World War II.

'Codename: Panzers' World War II Games

10
of 23

'Blitzkrieg'

Blitzkrieg 2 Screenshot

 Screenshot

First Release: 2003
Latest Release: 2015

"Blitzkrieg" is a series of World War II real-time strategy games developed by Russian video game developer Nival. The first title released in the series was "Blitzkrieg" in 2003. It features three separate single-player campaigns an American/British campaign, Soviet campaign, and German campaign which re-create many historical battles. The first title in the series had three expansion packs released which added a single player campaign such as a Rommel campaign in North Africa, a French resistance campaign, Patton campaign and more. The second game in the series "Blitzkrieg 2" features a new graphics/game engine as well as new gameplay features and units not found in the first title. There were two expansion packs released for "Blitzkrieg 2" which cover the battles around the end of World War II. A third "Blitzkrieg" game is currently in development and planned as a massively multiplayer RTS game, it was released through Steam Early Access in 2015.

In addition to the official "Blitzkrieg" games, there are a number of spin-off games that use Nival's game engines and are also set during World War II. These include "Panzerkrieg - Burning Horizon II," "Stalingrad," "Frontline: Field of Thunder" among others.

'Blitzkrieg' World War II Games

  • "Blitzkrieg" (2003)
  • "Blitzkrieg: Burning Horizon" (2004)
  • "Blitzkrieg: Rolling Thunder" (2004)
  • "Blitzkrieg: Iron Division/Gren Devils" (2005)
  • "Blitzkrieg 2" (2005)
  • "Blitzkrieg 2: Fall Of The Reich" (2006)
  • "Blitzkrieg 2: Liberation" (2007)
  • "Blitzkrieg 3" (2015)
11
of 23

'Commandos' Series

Commandos 3 Screenshot

Screenshot 

First Release: 1998
Latest Release: 2006

The "Commandos" series of games is a real-time strategy game where players control a group of British Commandos working behind enemy lines to complete various missions, most of which are stealth based. All games in the series with the exception of "Commandos: Strike Force" are played from a top-down isometric point of view. The first game features 20 missions that cover operations in Western Europe and North Africa. "Commandos: Beyond the Call of Duty" is a stand-alone expansion pack to "Behind Enemy Lines" adding eight new missions set in Greece and Yugoslavia.

The second main title in the series, "Commandos 2: Men of Courage" was released in 2001 and featured an all-new game engine with missions taking place from 1941 to 1945 in both the European and Pacific theaters of operation and features a total of 21 missions. The last traditional real-time tactics/strategy game released in the series was "Commandos 3: Destination Berlin" which was released in 2003. This game received favorable reviews and features more than a dozen missions that take place in both Eastern and Western Europe. "Commandos 3" was significantly harder than previous titles in the series as most missions had a time limit players had to meet in order to be successful and hotkeys and controls were changed from previous titles.

The latest "Commandos" game to be released was 2006's "Commandos Strike Force" which moved the series from the real-time tactics/strategy genre to first-person shooter genre. However, it was not met with success both commercial or critically and the series has seen little buzz since.

'Commandos' World War II Games

  • "Commandos: Behind Enemy Lines" (1998)
  • "Commandos: Beyond the Call of Duty" (1999)
  • "Commandos 2: Men of Courage" (2001)
  • "Commandos 3: Destination Berlin" (2003)
  • "Commandos: Strike Force" (2006)
12
of 23

'Making History' Series

Making History The War of the World Screenshot

Muzzy Lane Software

First Release: 2007
Latest Release: 2010

"Making History" is a series of grand strategy games that are similar to the "Hearts of Iron" series of WW2 strategy games but has someone more basic model to manage research, industry, diplomacy and other areas of nation management. The first title was released in 2007 and contains a number of different scenarios with the game starting in 1936, 1939, 1941 or 1944. Players have the ability to play as any nation that existed during the time frame of 1936-1945.

The second title in the series has a number of enhancements over "The Calm & The Storm" with more detailed game mechanics, units, map regions and more. Both games are turn-based strategy and offer a multiplayer component in addition to the single-player mode.

'Making History' World War II Games

  • "Making History: The Calm & The Storm" (2007)
  • "Making History II: The War of the World" (2010)
13
of 23

'Close Combat' Series

Close Combat Last Stand Arnhem Screenshot

Matrix Games

First Release: 1996
Latest Release: 2014

"Close Combat" is a series of real-time tactical games set during World War II that features the control of units of troops through various battles. The first games in the series were developed by Atomic Games and are played in a top down perspective. The games are based upon "Advanced Squad Leader," the popular Avalon Hill board game. Atomic Games developed a total of five "Close Combat games" from 1996 - 2000 which cover some of the major operations during World War II including Operation Market Garden, The Battle of the Bulge and the Invasion of Normandy.

Shortly after Atomic Games was acquired the series was licensed to Matrix Games which re-made "Close Combat III, IV, and V" in 2007, 2008 and 2009 respectively. The last three titles that have been released in the series are all original games developed by Matrix and cover Operation Market Garden, Operation Luttich, and Operation Epsom. The Atomic Games versions include infantry and armor units while the later games add artillery, mortars, air support and more. A new "Close Combat" game called "Close Combat: The Bloody First" has been in development but no official release date has been announced at the time of this writing.

'Close Combat' World War II Games

  • "Close Combat" (1996)
  • "Close Combat II: A Bridge Too Far" (1997)
  • "Close Combat III: The Russian Front" (1998)
  • "Close Combat IV: Battle of the Bulge" (1999)
  • "Close Combat V: Invasion Normandy" (2000)
  • "Close Combat: Cross of Iron" (2007)
  • "Close Combat: Wacht am Rhein" (2008)
  • "Close Combat: The Longest Day" (2009)
  • "Close Combat: Last Stand Arnhem" (2010)
  • "Close Combat: Panthers in the Fog" (2012)
  • "Close Combat: Gateway to Caen" (2014)
  • "Close Combat: The Bloody First" (TBD)
14
of 23

'The Outfront' series

Men of War: Assault Squad 2 Screenshot

1C Company

First Release: 2004
Latest Release: 2014

The "Outfront" or "Man of War" series of strategy games is a series of real-time tactics games. The series gets its name from the fact that the original release of "Soldiers: Heroes of World War II" was titled "Outfront." The first game, players control a small number of soldiers and must spend a good amount of time trying to keep them out of harm's way in order to be successful in the missions.

The sequel, "Faces of War," has players control the same small amount of soldiers but this time they are thrown into large scale battles with a number of AI controlled units. "Men of War" was released in 2008 and focuses on special operations and does not feature traditional base building/resource collection of other RTS games. Players also have direct control over individual soldiers and their equipment/weapons. Three standalone expansions for "Men of War" have been released covering different missions and operations during World War II and each expansion varies slightly in terms of gameplay. For example, "Med of War Assault Squad" focuses on a more traditional RTS gameplay where players are not limited to a fixed set of units. It also features more simulation aspects such as tracking unit ammunition, fuel and much more.

In addition to the features of the single-player campaign in the "Outfront series," all games also include multiplayer skirmish modes and some titles have a co-operative model as well.

'Outfront/Men of War World' War II Games

15
of 23

'Silent Hunter' series

Silent Hunter 5 Screenshot

Ubisoft

First Release: 1996
Latest Release: 2010

"Silent Hunter" is a series of World War II submarine combat simulation games. The first and second titles in the series were released by Strategic Simulations Inc (SSI) with "Silent Hunter" taking place in the Pacific Theater with players commanding a US Submarine and "Silent Hunter II" taking place in the Atlantic with players controlling a German U-Boat in the Battle of the Atlantic.

The third game also takes place in the Atlantic in the battle known as the Second Battle of the Atlantic with players controlling a German U-Boat. "Silent Hunter 4" returns to the Pacific ocean and US Submarines while the fifth and so far final game in the Silent Hunter series once again returning to the Atlantic and players in control of a German U-Boat.

'Silent Hunter' World War II Games

  • "Silent Hunter" (1996)
  • "Silent Hunter II" (2001)
  • "Silent Hunter III" (2005)
  • "Silent Hunter 4: Wolves of the Pacific" (2007)
  • "Silent Hunter V: Battle of the Atlantic" (2010)
16
of 23

'Combat Mission'

Combat Mission: Fortress Italy Screenshot

Battlefront.com

First Release: 2000
Latest Release: 2014

There have been six "Combat Mission" games released that have been set during World War II. The games are based on tactical turn-based strategy gameplay with simultaneous execution meaning that all players issue orders/commands and then all orders are executed simultaneously. The first three games released were all built using the same game engine know as "CMx1." The latest three titles have been built using "CMx2" which has been upgraded a number of times but features enhanced gameplay elements and features over and above the first engine.

'Combat Mission' World War II Games

17
of 23

'Hidden & Dangerous'

Hidden & Dangerous

©ake Two Interactive

First Release: 1999
Latest Release: 2004

"Hidden & Dangerous" is a series of first and third person stealth tactical shooters set during World War II. Players control a team of eight British SAS operatives. Prior to each mission, players choose which soldiers to take on missions based on soldier skills and background. An expansion pack was released for each title which both of which added single player missions, multiplayer maps and more.

"Hidden & Dangerous" was released as freeware in 2003 as a promotion for the release of "Hidden & Dangerous 2" and remains freely available today.

'Hidden & Dangerous' World War II Games

18
of 23

'Battlestations'

Battlestations Pacific Screenshot

Eidos Interactive

First Release: 2007
Latest Release: 2009

"Battlestations" is a series of naval and airforce real-time tactics game set during World War II. "Battlestations: Midway" centers around the Battle of Midway with players controlling different types of ships including submarines, carriers, battleships, and aircraft. The single player campaign follows 11 historically based missions. The second game in the series expands upon Midway by adding new gameplay features, island invasions, new weapons, planes and more. It also includes two single player campaigns with a total of 28 missions. Both games also feature multiplayer game modes.

'Battlestations' World War II Games

  • "Battlestations: Midway" (2007)
  • "Battlestations: Pacific" (2009)
19
of 23

'Battlestrike' Series

Battlestrike The Road to Berlin Screenshot

City Interactive

First Release: 2004
Latest Release: 2009

The "Battlestrike" series of World War II first-person shooters developed by Polish developer City Interactive and are typically budget priced upon release. The first game in the series focuses on vehicle combat action from a fixed scrolling position while other games in the series have a more traditional first-person shooter gameplay. The latest two releases in the series are both built using the Lithtech game engine, which was developed for F.E.A.R., these titles have the most advanced graphics and gameplay features of the series.

'Battlestrike' World War II Games

  • "Battlestrike: Sniper – Call to Victory" (2004)
  • "Battlestrike: The Siege" (2005)
  • "Battlestrike: The Road to Berlin" (2005)
  • "Battlestrike: Secret Weapons" (2008)
  • "Battlestrike: Force of Resistance" (2008)
  • "Battlestrike: Shadow of Stalingrad" (2009)
  • "Battlestrike: Western and Eastern Front" (2009)
20
of 23

'Sniper Elite'

Sniper Elite 3 Screenshot

Rebellion

First Release: 2005
Latest Release: 2014

The "Sniper Elite" series consists of three tactical shooter games where players take on the role of an American OOS agent inserted behind enemy lines. In the first title, players take part in the Battle of Berlin disguised as a German sniper as they try to obtain secret German nuclear technology before Berlin falls to the Soviets. The second game in the series, "Sniper Elite V2" has a similar premise but this time players must capture or kill German scientists behind the V-2 rocket program before the Soviets. Third and latest title in the series, Sniper Elite III, is set prior to the events of V2 in North Africa with players trying to obtain plans about a secret wonder weapon.

'Sniper Elite' World War II Games

21
of 23

'Deadly Dozen'

Deadly Dozen Pacific Theater Screenshot

Infogrames

First Release: 2001
Latest Release: 2002

"Deadly Dozen" is a series of World War II squad-based first-person shooters. There have been just two games (no expansions packs) released. "Deadly Dozen" was released in 2001 and centers around a band of imprisoned, misfit soldiers given a chance at redemption by successfully completing dangerous missions. It is loosely based on the 1967 movie "The Dirty Dozen." The second title in the series, "Deadly Dozen: Pacific Theater" features the same background story of a band of misfit soldiers but this time their operations are against the Japanese in the Pacific Theater.

'Deadly Dozen' World War II Games

22
of 23

'Wolfschanze'

Wolfschanze Screenshot

City Interactive

First Release: 2007
Latest Release: 2009

The "Wolfschanze" series of first-person shooters set during World War II. The storyline for the first game in the series is inspired by the events and actions of Claus von Stauffenberg. Players take on the role of von Stauffenberg and complete missions with the ultimate goal of the assassination of Hitler. In "Wolfschanze 2," players take on the role of an officer in the Russian army who has been sent on a dangerous mission to Wolf's Lair to steal the Enigma encryption machine and codebook.

'Wolfschanze' World War II Games

  • "Wolfschanze" (2007)
  • "Wolfschanze" (2009)
23
of 23

'Sudden Strike'

Sudden Strike 2 Screenshot

Cdv Software Entertainment

First Release: 2000
Latest Release: 2010

"Sudden Strike" is a series of real-time tactics games set during World War II, to date, it contains a total of six titles including expansion packs. In the games, players will select a faction, German, Soviets or Allies and control various units in tactical battles. The first game in the series contains three single-player campaigns and is credited with innovation in the real-time tactics genre despite the mixed reviews it received. "Sudden Strike 2" includes an updated game engine, new gameplay features and the addition of Japan as a faction. The second title was enhanced and re-released as "Sudden Strike Resource War" in 2004.

"Sudden Strike 3," released in 2008 was the first game in the series to feature a fully 3D game engine and features campaigns in the Pacific and European Theaters. The latest title released in the series called "The Last Stand" introduces a number of new features over the previous titles such as unit abilities such as ambush, reconnaissance and more.

'Sudden Strike' World War II Games

  • "Sudden Strike" (2000)
  • "Sudden Strike: Forever" (2001)
  • "Sudden Strike 2" (2002)
  • "Sudden Strike: Resource War" (2004)
  • "Sudden Strike 3: Arms for Victory" (2008)
  • "Sudden Strike: The Last Stand" (2010)