It may not be quite as famous as Command & Conquer or WarCraft, but for many real-time strategy connoisseurs, 1997?s Total Annihilation is more than a match for its better known rivals. This is the long awaited, unofficial, follow-up by Chris Taylor, creator of the original. As in Total Annihilation you don?t take the role of a nameless overseer, but instead you directly control a giant nanobot dispensing robot responsible for building all major buildings. From these are manufactured a dizzying array of specialised meachanoids, from infantry and artillery robots to repair droids and special construction bots.The units in the original Total Annihilation ranged greatly in size but here the difference is profound. While many units are roughly human in scale others seem to be the size of a small village, as gigantic spider bots stroll through forests as if they were walking through tall grass. Aircraft carriers are just as massive and function properly as mobile cities with repair and production facilities. The game?s scale is reinforced even further by the new ability to zoom the camera so far out that individual units become icons on an overhead map. This is no gimmick though as you can still control multiple units on this new strategic scale, as well as deploy nuclear missiles and other weapons of mass destruction.Total Annihilation?s superb waypoint system is replicated and improved here, allowing you to micromanage in exacting detail every movement of every unit. Patrol routes can be plotted out (as useful for repair units as for combat air patrols) as well as strategically circuitous routes around any terrain. All of which is perfect for fighting on multiple different fronts at once. After years of stasis the real-time strategy seems finally to be evolving to the next level.