E3: The Trailers – Dawn of War II. Tyranids?

Normally I have no time for cinematic trailers. Show me the game. This one, though, is oodles of bloody fun. Especially the Dreadnaut flambé scene. And what’s that sky-swarm thingy at the end? Could it be? Could it really be… Tyranids? Let there be much rejoicing. (It may just be video blur, but I’m feeling wishful. And ‘oh, it’s Chaos again’ just wouldn’t seem to suit that sort of dramatic cliffhanger. Also, see beneath the cut for further, and very strong corroboration that ‘They’ are indeed our much-desired Big Uglies).

Read on for more ‘nid hints…

I’m a little out of touch with Tyranid lore myself, despite having a small ‘nid 40K army in the cupboard that I’ve never used or painted, so I’ll hand you over to helpful RPS reader Nick Halme to explain all:

The latest 40k rulebook clearly outlines, in handy-dandy chart form, that the first step of any Tyranid invasion is to release toxic spores into the atmosphere. Essentially, they’re acclimatising the planet for themselves, which is not so pretty for the natural inhabitants or…invadees. They then proceed through a number of subsequent steps, most of which involve murderous rampaging, all of which lead to the death of a world.

The end of the Gamespot trailer is a Tyranid reveal, and that swarmy stuff is toxic gas swirling about. The Eldar were no doubt there to try and put a stop to it, or have the Farseer (the chick who got the chainsword to the chest) act as a beacon for something.


  1. Mark Stephenson says:

    Doesn’t work in the latest version of IE for me.

    Get an undefined error when i say i was born 01/01/1903

  2. mike says:

    Me too. I’m on linux 64 so I usually assume it’s the borked integration of 32bit Flash. Not this time though… eh. Why did I just write this? Oh yeah, give me the vid.

  3. Ross says:

    I want the Tyranids, I really do, but I just can’t make out any reveal at the end of this trailer?

  4. Lh'owon says:

    That was glorious! I don’t even know anything about Dawn of War and I love that trailer to bits.

  5. Novakoala says:

    The direct link from Gamespot works for me.

    It’s nicely done, but I’m not sure it has the same ZOMG factor as the intro cutscene from the first Dawn of War. The Eldar seemed a bit too sympathetic to me (and too human, as well?). I have visions of the campaign featuring a Warcraft 3-esque coming together to fight off the Tyranids, which might be a heartwarming story but wouldn’t really be in keeping with the bleakness of 40k.

    Good to see Blur Studio getting more animation work, though!

  6. MasterBoo says:

    Amazing trailer.

  7. kenok says:

    Floored me!

  8. Arsewisely says:

    Wow, that was an awesome video! I hope you get a sense of that combat in the actual game.

  9. MisterBritish says:

    Holycrapthatwascool. And one of the finest ‘INCOMING!’s to grace my PC.

    Surely ‘nids would better suit an ominous ‘them…’ than chaos?

  10. Nick Halme says:

    Warhammer nerd, on site. This is most definitely a Tyranid reveal.

    As part of a Tyranid invasion they release toxic spores into the atmosphere, which is what you see swirling around the moon. This is all outlined in the newest 40k rulebook, which describes the death of a planet after Tyranid invasion.

    Not to mention that the Tyranid are slightly creepy-crawly; and those strings being plucked at the end certainly mark them and not the more surly Chaos.

  11. Arsewisely says:

    I was hoping to see a lictor in the foliage when the camera panned up…

  12. Albides says:

    This made me grin wide. The Dawn of War cutscenes have always been great. That put even Blizzard to shame. You know the technique has been terribly contrived, and has been used elsewhere, but it’s just fantastic watching the units you know and love strutting their stuff one after the other. “Howling Banshees! Warp Spider! Ranger! Eee! Dreadnought!”

    Yes, I am a pansy elf lover and proud of it.

  13. Ross says:

    Ah, I should have listened with the sound on…

    ‘Nids! Woo!

  14. The Hammer says:

    That was indeed a very nice trailer, and a damn good reveal.

    It’s nice too to see units to know get a showing. Interesting opposite sides, too.

  15. Steve says:

    We need this in HD….

  16. Kommissar Nicko says:


    One thing I will never understand is: why, despite the lessons of history, do the cool kids never wear their helmets?

  17. Man Raised By Puffins says:

    Ooh, it’s like the original Dawn of War intro all over again.

  18. cullnean says:

    lol dreadnaught makin eldar marshmellows

  19. aegix says:

    This is actually by plasticwax, not Blur Studios as some of you are speculating. They’re keeping up the tradition of awesome DoW cutscenes though.

  20. Lightbulb says:


    I am disappointed with the the webspinner (thats teleporting dude to you non-40k players). The gun should be a mono-filament web which traps and then cuts to pieces the Marine not some energy weapon.

    As for if its a Tyranid spoiler it could just as easily be Chaos since that looked alot like how they describe a warp storm in the books – this would indicate to a large (non-eldar) fleet so could go either way.

    I was expecting a swarm of spores to be coming down which would be a definite Tyranid spoiler.

    I don’t think the trailer is conclusive.

  21. spd from Russia says:

    Blur Studio never fails to make a good cinematic!
    looks really great

  22. Albides says:


    Webspinner? I thought they were called Warpspiders? Look closely at the marine as he gets shot, though, and it does look like the sparkly monofilament wires. It seems to stick to his armour, though the scene is too brief to show the slicing.

  23. Shon says:

    Cool kids leave their helmets off so their players can identify who’s the Commanding Officer from the other three inch high figures.

    Yeah, it never made sense to me in character either.

  24. Chris says:

    He’s definitely a Warp Spider, unless they changed the name for the first game.

    Mind you, my entire knowledge of 40k is from a) Dawn of War, and b) first edition rulebook plus about 2 or 3 issues of White Dwarf from nearly 20 years ago. I think the last one I saw was the one which introduced the Harlequins. The various Harlequin types seem to have been pretty much expanded out into standard Eldar units from what I can see. I thought the monofilament thing was a Harlequin’s Kiss, which always seemed like a mega-nasty weapon (?).

  25. Surgeon says:

    If anyone fancies brushing up on their 40K lore, then I can highly recommend the Lexicanum :D

    link to wh40k.lexicanum.com

  26. James T says:

    This is actually by plasticwax, not Blur Studios as some of you are speculating. They’re keeping up the tradition of awesome DoW cutscenes though.

    Oh yeah? They did the STALKER cinemas as well; respect to PW.

    I never gave a shit about Warhammer, despite admiring some of the concept art in yer codexes and so on, but this does give me fond memories of highschool, where most of my even-nerdier friends and associates were gaga about 40k; this would’ve have spurred a trip to the laundry for those boys (well, for their mothers).

    …But I still don’t care to play, as I don’t enjoy RTSes (unless Commandos counts). Oh well!

  27. El Stevo says:

    The big men in suits talk like transformers. That’s all I have to contribute.

  28. Saul says:

    The guys are Warpspiders, their weapons are Webspinners.


  29. Chad says:


    Although you probably haven’t read much on this game since you aren’t interested in RTS, it sounds as if it is going to be quite different. It’s supposedly dropping many of the traditional RTS aspects and focusing on small scale fights.

  30. James T says:

    Ah, more of a team combat type thing, Chad? Interesting-ish, I should catch up methinks.

    The big men in suits talk like transformers. That’s all I have to contribute.

    I hope they talk like these Transformers…
    There’s no way Megatron will cheat — it would ruin his honour! (NSFW. But awesome. Not that you’d watch Youtube at work anyway, surely!)

  31. Cradok says:

    Do we know yet which Ravens company is going to be in this game? The Marine commander in the videos doesn’t look or sound like Angelos…

  32. LQB says:

    It could just be a random Sergeant, or who knows maybe they revised the way Angelos looks.

  33. JM says:

    It does look very Tyranidy – the mycetic spores are supposed to be basically numberless and the hive fleets themselves are impossibly vast.

    Now if only someone would make a good Battlefleet Gothic game so we could fight the bugs in space….

  34. Larington says:

    Maybe its my imagination but I get the feeling that cloud is supposed to have some sort of tyranid shape to it.

    And once again the dreadnought wipes the floor, I’m left wondering how much genetic material there is inside a dreadnought, would it be technically possible for a genestealer spore to affect the remains of the occupant…

  35. Nick Halme says:

    Those are Howling Banshees, not Harlequins :)

    As for a warp storm, it would be much more…violent.

  36. Master Builder says:

    That was superb!

    Makes me wish for a Warhammer 40k FPS. Can’t think why a decent dev hasn’t been assigned the task, the blood soaked 40k universe is ripe material.

  37. zanbowser says:

    You guys talking about the Warp Spiders are all a little right, a little wrong; their Aspect is the “Warp Spider,” their weapons, “Deathspinners.”

    GW changed the rules for Deathspinners (2nd/3rd ed.? – not sure which) from template weapons (heavy flamer) to single/assault X(not sure there, either) target-based weapons. This was probably changed because of guys like me: I had three squads of seven, each with double-deathspinner Exarchs, which would mulch up any Guard army, and pretty much anything else reliant on infantry with an armour rating lower than a Space Marine. I think it was 4s to hit, auto-wound (or S8 or something – don’t feel like looking)… not pleasant for my opponent.

    I recall a particular savaging of Greenskins in which I eliminated better than 75% of the opposing army in a single turn. But – now I just play Tyranids… 100 model Hormagaunt swarm, FTW!

    All that is to say that the representation in the video is probably closest to the current vision of the rulebook. Gone is the “cloud of monofilament,” replaced by a “high-energy clump of monofilament plasma” or some such “projectile mess-you-right-the-funk-up.”

    Anyway… just clarifying for GW geeks and non-GW-geeks, alike.


  38. Chris says:

    Arr, Howling Banshees, yes, but from what I remember this whole aspect thing didn’t exist originally. There was just Eldar (I guess they’re pretty much the Guardian squads now), and then Harlequins were introduced in an issue of White Dwarf a wee bit later: Reapers, Banshees etc were all part of the Harlequin troupe at that point. I assume GW at one point decided that it was a waste having all these cool ideas concentrated in one supposedly rare subset of one race and changed it to the way it is now.

    Of course, this is all pretty hazily remembered from quite a while back so I could be wrong. I’m so far behind on GW stuff I was surprised when DoW didn’t have Squats and Zoats…

  39. Subjective Effect says:

    @zanbowser – didn’t your enemy know that you liked that set-up? Assuming you played by points (and fairly) was he/she not able to muster a suitable repellent?

    I think we can also safely say that Relic know just how much everyone is hankering for Tyranids and, even if this trailer didn’t really hint at it (as in if that was actually chaos indicated at the end) they are surely inevitable.

  40. Jonathan says:

    If you didn’t like that cinematic there’s something wrong with you.

    Also at 1:26 “sup?”. Add a sandwich and it becomes a whole new trailer.

  41. Dolphan says:

    @Master Builder

    Fire Warrior wasn’t all that bad, especially once you got to fight Space Marines.

  42. Sucram says:

    Screw gameplay footage, more pre-rendered stuff like that please.

    Still don’t like the Eldar voice though. In the first game I blamed it on the helmets, seeing the farseer talk like a synthesizer was just plain odd.

  43. Birdoman says:

    The HD version is brilliant, just watched it three times, although it’s not /quite/ as good as the DoW intro. Good catch @Jonathan!

  44. Erlam says:

    “Makes me wish for a Warhammer 40k FPS. Can’t think why a decent dev hasn’t been assigned the task, the blood soaked 40k universe is ripe material.”

    Fire Warrior was one of the worst games I’ve ever played. Of any genre. Anyone who had the PC version will know what I’m talking about when I say ‘fucked controls.’

  45. Chryso says:

    Worth pointing out: console controls were actually alright for Fire Warrior. It was a completely generic FPS apart from the art, and linear as hell, but the models were well done, and a few levels managed to give some sense of 40k’s epic-ness. Mostly though, it was pretty crappy: the hilariously wimpy and impractical Bolter they give you to use was a particular highlight.

    This cinematic on the other hand, was goddamned awesome; I peed a little when the sniper got perforated. They need to let Abnett out of his box for a weekend, get him over to the studio, and put a full-length feature together.

  46. Anthony Damiani says:

    Man, I’ve been waiting a long time for a chance to fight creepy-crawly biological-weapon aliens with battle-armored space marines!

  47. Lightbulb says:

    Albides – Yes they are infact. Dodgy memory on my part. I thought that didn’t sound right! Maybe the gun is a webspinner…

    I guess it could be, didn’t notice it sticking but if it did then i withdraw my comment. :)

  48. K says:

    They made Eldar look good. Impressive.

  49. rocketeer says:

    Dawn of War 2: Games for Windows Live.

    Dawn of War 2: SecuROM.

    Dawn of War 2: FU, Relic.