Army Men: RTS is a real time strategy game in the Army Men video game series released on the PlayStation 2 and GameCube in 2002, and Microsoft Windows in 2004. The game includes 16 campaign missions, 8 "special operation" missions and 8 "great battles" missions. The game revolves around collecting resources (Plastic & Electricity) and using it to build structures and troops while fighting the tan army. Each structure/soldier requires a certain amount of resources. The game is heavily based on the movie Apocalypse Now, as the player has to hunt down an insane colonel.
A group of Green tanks attacks a Tan barracks. Smoke on one of the tanks offers a visual sign that it is damaged. Army Men: RTS takes place in the fictional Army Men universe, where Tan and Green army men wage war across two different worlds: their native plastic world and the real world. RTS only takes place in the real world, however. A key concept of several other games, plastrification, the transformation of plastic soldiers into regular, immobile toys after spending too much time in the real world, is ignored in RTS though it could be possible that by the time this game takes place in, the serum for combating plastrification has become mandatory for all Green Soldiers entering in the real world.
The story centers around a house. It had been under control of Green officer Colonel Blintz. After part of his head was shot off in a battle, Blintz disappeared, only to later reappear as a leader of Tan forces. The house fell into Tan hands, and Sarge was dispatched to terminate the traitor and regain control of the region for Green.
Several parapoopers attack a tower as reinforcements drop in. A few large pieces of plastic are visible from where other tan units were destroyed.Army Men: RTS's gameplay requires the acquisition and control of two resources; plastic and electricity, which are necessary to construct combat units and buildings. Plastic, which is required for all normal units, is taken from everyday objects, including Frisbees, dog bowls, and toys. Additionally, whenever a unit or structure is destroyed, a chunk of plastic worth a fraction of its initial cost appears where it was destroyed. Plastic is 'harvested' by Dump Trucks. Electricity, which is required for vehicles and Radio operator equipment, is drawn from electrical objects, such as batteries, toasters, and walkie-talkies. A particular structure, the Resource Depot, must be built to collect the resources gathered by the Dump Trucks.
Players use their resources to construct buildings and units. Since both factions have access to the same buildings and units neither side has an innate advantage over the other. Some buildings construct new units while others provide defense for a base. The production buildings can be upgraded to produce better units. Units are either infantry or vehicles. Infantry troops are cheap to produce but are not as tough, while vehicles tend to be costly. Vehicles range from passive (dump trucks and base-building bulldozers) to aggressive (tanks and half-tracks) to defensive (mine layers) to suicidal Dum-dums, robots armed with firecrackers). Aside from grunts and grenadiers, infantry units have a special task; minesweepers clear out traps, snipers are potent anti-infantry units, and mortar men can annihilate buildings from afar.
Due to the nature of each unit, players must be able to counter whatever they are facing. A group of snipers could wipe out a force of grunts with ease, but the same group of snipers would be helpless against a half-track. Countering the half-track with a tank would leave a weakness to choppers. Players must balance both the relative strengths and weaknesses of their forces and their opponent's forces with the cost of producing the units.
Level balance can be changed by other factors. Power-ups, which can improve the speed, health, or damage of whichever side finds them first, cause a disparity between the sides. Heroes, powerful versions of the regular infantry, can cause great damage before being destroyed. Insects, chiefly ants, act as free units for whichever side is allied with them. The secondary objectives of single player missions often deal with one of these things.
The Windows version of Army Men: RTS allows for multiplayer with up to eight people. A copy of GameSpy Arcade was bundled with the game. Players can team up in multiplayer matches, or the battle can be a free-for-all. Victory occurs when the opposing side has no Headquarters and cannot build one in three minutes. Aside from GameSpy Arcade, connections can be made on a LAN or through a direct connection between players. Most people are part of a Clan when using Gamespy Arcade.
- This was one of the last games released by 3DO before they filed for bankruptcy.
- This is the last game of the series released by 3DO before Global Star Software bought Army Men though 3DO started work on Army Men Sarge's War before going under.
- Army Men RTS is one of only two Army Men game ever released in Japan, being published by Capcom as Totsugeki! Army Man: Shijō Saishō no Sakusen (突撃!アーミーマン 史上最小の作戦, lit. "Assault! Army Man: The Smallest Strategy in History"). The game itself still enjoys a small, but loyal, fanbase in Japan and is possibly the reason why Army Men Strike was given a Japanese release.