Update: I was unfortunately not aware of Shamus Young's severe criticism of Fallout 3 available here to link in the original piece and I regret that. It dovetails rather nicely with what I've written and it's much better executed than my piece. I strongly recommend anyone...
Developer: Creative Assembly
Though the competition is fierce, this particular road leads straight to Rome: Total War. Capable of rendering thousands of soldiers on the battlefield, Rome's brilliant engine brought the epic scope of historic conflicts right into your PC. Then it went a step further by incorporating deep dynasty elements like city construction and extensive diplomacy. Bold, impressive, innovative, and huge, Rome: Total War handily conquers the genre. Hail Caesar!
No matter how you paint it, war is violent, bloody and aggressive - three words that accurately describe the commendable carnage of Dawn of War. Furious battles filled with all sorts of gruesome details only scratch the surface of this well-balanced strategy beast, which also happens to feature some of the coolest unit design we've ever witnessed. Let the sun shine in.