If your soundtrack is in the Age of Empires series, please also try to list a soundtrack in another series as I feel we’re probably going to get a lot of AOE games as answers.
In the age series I feel its close between the base game of Age 1 and 2. I love them both so much and they’re so steeped in nostalgia for me its hard to pick one. I feel like 2 edges it out slightly but only ever so slightly.
Out of the Age series it might be Halo Wars or Command and Conquer: Tiberian sun. Halo Wars is a mix of both Stephen Rippy and the beautiful Halo soundtracks which is great on all levels. I only finished Halo Wars last year but the soundtrack has to go down as one of my favorites.
Tiberian Sun is a great mix of the intense upbeat Techno/Rock work that Frank Klapleki is so well known for as well as hopeless dead ambience and a strong grim atmosphere which I can’t really disagree with. The perfect mix of a thick mood to pull you in and high energy to keep you going.
C&C1 and Total Annihilation have the best soundtracks out of most games, let alone RTS. Just go to youtube a check them out.
My favorite soundtracks in RTS/Strategy are the ones in CK2, EU4 and HOI4 by Paradox. They are not exactly RTS, but still…
Their mixes of folk power metal in CK2, plus the orchestral metal in EU4, and the straight up Sabaton in HOI4 gives then a really heavy - and violent, for strategy games standard - playlist of songs, something few games can claim these days (see Vikings Gods and Locust Storm, from CK2 dlc Viking Gods). The only reason these songs are not really perfect for me is because they lack death growls and a double bass pedal.
But not heavy enough, tho. I simply mute then and listen to my own playlist - some brutal stuff ranging from Alien Fucker (pornogrind) to Ahab (funeral doom) to Burzum (scandinavian black metal) to Bolt Thrower (Bolt Thrower). I even did muted Doom 2016 soundtrack once, because i felt it wasn’t heavy enough.
I checked C&C 1 soundtrack. I don’t like the genre this music would fall into, so i will not give any opinions because they would be really biased and probably would make you very angry at me.
As for Total Annihilation, i didn’t got the songs in the context they should be played, but it has some good tracks. Didn’t catch my attention tho.
I keep the CK and EU soundtracls as a staple in my relaxing/productive music playlist.
I own Total Annihilation but I haven’t played much. Am I missing out?
Yes, you are.
It is a hard game to get into, but once you have, you can see there is no equal, specially with the Escalation mod.
A more modern version, that is also easier to get used to, due to modernized mechanics, is Supreme Commander: Forged Alliance.