-> ''The Nuclear Dawn devastated the world. But today, the war still rages on. As the survivors join the blue banner of the Consortium, or the red standard of the Empire, which side will ''you'' choose?'' - Nuclear Dawn trailer.

''Nuclear Dawn'' is a FirstPersonShooter / RealTimeStrategy hybrid. It was developed and self-published by [=InterWave=] Studios using the [[GameEngine Source Engine]]. It was originally announced as a free mod in February 2006, [[DevelopmentHell but suffered a protracted development schedule.]] It was reborn as a retail title, finally getting a simultanious PC/MAC release on UsefulNotes/{{Steam}} on September 26 of 2011. An UsefulNotes/Xbox360 version is forthcoming.

[[TheFuture It is the year 2049.]] [[ApocalypseHow The world has been devastated by the fires of nuclear war,]] [[AfterTheEnd but humanity perseveres]]- in great enough numbers to form two new nations from the ashes of the old world: [[WeHaveReserves The massive,]] [[DirtyCommunists communistic,]] [[IndividualityIsIllegal oppressive]] [[TheEmpire Empire,]] and the individualistic, [[{{Determinator}} determined]] [[TheFederation Consortium,]] who always put TheMenFirst. These two are of course at each others' throats, competing for strategic locations, vital resources and pre-Dawn artifacts.

The game itself plays a bit like VideoGame/{{Battlefield}}, with large, class-based teams competing for strategic points, as in that game's Conquest mode. But there's a big twist- one player takes the role of [[ACommanderIsYou a commander]] and has a TopDownView of the battlefield from their team's command bunker. From there, the commander can [[RidiculouslyFastConstruction quickly]] build structures and place them anywhere within the base's power grid.These include Assemblers to build other structures, [[SentryGun turrets]], [[HealThyself Supply]] [[InfiniteSupplies posts]], [[RespawnPoint spawn points]] and the power generators to keep it all running. [[InstantExpert He can also research upgrades for the troops]], issue them orders and use [[SupportPower Support Powers]] like [[DeathFromAbove artillery]] and area-of-effect healing. [[YouRequireMoreVespeneGas Resources for all this are generated]] by the points that the FPS players capture. The objective of the core (and so far only) gametype, Warfare, is to destroy the opposing side's command bunker.

!!''Nuclear Dawn'' provides examples of:

* ActionGirl: Consortium Stealths and Imperial Supports.
* AKA47: [[AvertedTrope Averted,]] the real guns that appear have their real names.
* BackStab: Can be done by Stealths with the Assassin Kit. [[HitboxDissonance The hit detection can be a bit wonky though.]]
* BladeBelowTheShoulder: The Imperial Assassin Stealth uses punch-daggers. The Consortium counterpart instead has a pair of combat knives, held in ReverseGrip.
* ClassAndLevelSystem: You gain experience for actions in game, with additional bonuses given for aiding your squad members or following orders. Leveling overall confers generic perks, called "gizmos", such as larger magazine sizes or more damage, while leveling each class grants class-specific gizmos. [[CharacterCustomization One of each can be equipped at any given time. There are four classes, each with two or more available "kits"]]:
* CommandAndConquerEconomy: The commander has to keep up with building things, or the FPS players will likely lose momentum.
* ColorCodedArmies: Imperial troops wear white armor, Consortium dark gray.
* CosmeticallyDifferentSides: There are only slight variations between weapons. The only large differences are [[FireBreathingWeapon flame turrets]] for the Empire and [[MakeMeWannaShout sonic ones]] for Consortium, and how each side extends it's power grid: Imperial Relay Towers have unlimited range but must have line-of-sight to other Towers, while Consortium Wireless Repeaters have much shorter range, but can transmit through solid objects.
* EmergencyWeapon: All classes are armed with a pistol for backup. It can deal surprisingly high damage in the right hands.
* EnemyDetectingRadar: Building a radar tower will cause enemies in range to show up on friendly radar screens, while also enabling turrets to shoot at cloaked stealths within range.
* TheEngineer: Supports with the Engineer Kit. They can use their [[MagicTool blowtorch to repair friendly buildings and damage enemy ones.]] They can toss {{EMP}} grenades to temporarily disable enemy buildings and blind players, and drop "Daisycutter" mines. They have a shotgun for personal defense.
* FireBreathingWeapon: The NX-300 Flamethrower, used by Supports with the BBQ Kit. It lacks range, but is useful for holding areas and sowing confusion and chaos in enemy ranks.
* GatlingGood: The weapon of the Exo's [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Suppression]] Kit. Incorrectly labeled a "Chaingun". His Lockdown ability makes the gun much more accurate then other uses of the trope, giving him unparalleled lethality at range. The machine gun turrets also have gatling-style setups.
* GrenadeLauncher: The M52 Hydra MGL, used by Assaults with the Grenadier Kit.
* InfiniteSupplies: Commanders can build Supply Stations to provide health and ammo to the troops.
* InvisibilityCloak: Used by Stealths. It's a fairly efficient one in that the Stealth can even attack while cloaked, though doing so drops it. Unfortunately for the guy [[BackStab he just stabbed,]] [[CaptainObvious that's a small comfort.]]
* JackOfAllStats: Assaults, with 200 health, frag grenades, the widest variety of weapons and [[VisibleInvisibility the ability to spot cloaked Stealths]] using their [[GogglesDoSomethingUnusual Thermal Visor]] ability.
* MightyGlacier: Exos, with the ability to mow down players with a Gatling gun, or hammer structures with [[StuffBlowingUp a rocket launcher.]] ([[EnergyWeapons Or a laser cannon,]] if you're Imperial).
* TheMedic: Supports with the Medic Kit, of course. They can drop health kits which heal friendlies near them, and are armed with [[DeadlyGas toxic gas grenades]] to deny areas to enemy infantry and [[CombatMedic with a fast-firing SMG for personal defense.]]
* RespawnPoint: Called "Transport Gates" in-game, presumably [[TeleportersAndTransporters they teleport in]] [[WeHaveReserves fresh troops]]. The commander should place these near the front-lines in various areas to help the FPS players push.
* RidiculouslyFastConstruction
* SentryGun: All over the place. These are the commander's offensive and defensive weapons, as he does not have direct control of the troops. They're critical for defending areas and [[HoldTheLine holding the frontlines]] if troops need to retreat to heal and resupply.
* ShortRangeShotgun: [[AvertedTrope Completely Averted!]] The SPETZ-9 shotgun used by both sides can hit targets at a very respectable distance.
* StuffBlowingUp: Assaults and BBQ Supports are armed with frag grenades, various kits have [[LandMineGoesClick mines]], Saboteur Stealths have remote explosives, and Siege Exos have the M-95 L.A.W.S. rocket launcher and the [[EnergyWeapons X-01 Pulse Cannon,]] respectively. Oh, and there are [[SentryGun rocket turrets]] [[DeathFromAbove and artillery cannons.]] Oh yeah, lots of StuffBlowingUp.
* TechTree: The commander can and should research upgrades for the troops, perhaps most importantly the "Advanced Kits" upgrade, which among other kits enables access to Exo siege weapons- critical for advancing into enemy lines.
* YouRequireMoreVespeneGas: Resources for the commander to build, upgrade and repair are generated by resource points, found throughout each map. There are three sizes: Tertiary (Many, small resource amount) Secondary (Much fewer, more resources) and Primary. (Only one on each map, lots of resources)