You knew it, we knew it, but God it’s nice to really know it. Dawn of War II will definitely, definitely feature Tyranids, as evidenced by Relic’s making an already splendid CGI trailer even more splendid:

Drooling chitinous spacebeasts have never been so hot. Edit – in-game footage here.

IGN UK has an interview up with DOWII’s senior designer Philippe Boulle about the nature of the ‘nids, plus an ace, sadly watermarked screenshot of a big ol’ Carnifex. Not much info, but this is the key bit:

The Tyranid swarm is a single organism, not an army of individuals. Defensive “meat shields” of disposable creatures protect powerful specialists. These specialists also serve as conduits for the guiding Hive Mind, empowering the smaller units and making them more effective. Players will actually see the swarm change tactics and behavior as it comes under the guidance of these synapse creatures.

There’s also confirmation that the Space Marines will be the only playable race in the singleplayer campaign – Orks, Eldar and Tyranids are multiplayer (and presumably skirmish) only. Boo!

Thanks to Subedii and John Hilton for the tip-offs.


  1. Rogue says:

    Huzzah! Playable Tyranids! \o/

    What about Chaos Marines though? It seems a bit weird excluding the traitor legions from DOW2 though, considering how they’re one of the main opponents of the Imperium and were in the original DOW.

  2. Dolphan says:

    Why have they gone back to the single-race campaign of the original? Feels horribly limiting compared to Dark Crusade and Soulstorm.

  3. Alex says:

    Finally. Frankly, it would’ve been a bit ridiculous if they weren’t in there.

    Beautiful trailer. I find it slightly disconcerting to see characters that in my eyes were always over the top and cartoonish in such a semi-realistic, physical way.

  4. Erlam says:

    Yes! I love playing (against) ‘Nids!

    Interesting to see how it pans out, gameplay wise. The Orks… didn’t do so well in previous versions.

  5. Alex says:

    Thats it! We´re all gonna die, man! *Drops his lasgun and curls up in his trench, weaping like a baby*

  6. JonFitt says:

    I far preferred the scripted campaign over the “single-player” skirmish campaign of Dark Crusade and Soulstorm.
    I don’t think that mode shouldn’t exist, but it is no replacement for a good scripted campaign.

    My ideal game would have several scripted campaigns and then a skirmish campaign mode.

    Maybe the add-ons will add scripted campaigns as well as new races?

  7. Sp4rkR4t says:

    If the add-ons add extra full campaign’s I’m all for this model. I’m just so happy that they have finally confirmed the ‘nids inclusion.

  8. Okami says:

    In (almost) totally unrelated other news: My copy of the Dark Heresy rulebook has at last arrived in the mail. I’m very happy in a very dorky way right now.

    Slightly more on topic: Somebody must make a 40K cRPG. And it would be cool if that somebody wasn’t a studio run by a comic artist, currently working on a generic Heavenly Ninja of War May Cry rip off.

    On Topic: Yay! ‘Nids!

  9. Anonymous says:

    Seems to me that having one solid single player campaign means they can use the expansions for new campaigns, rather than having them each replace the previous skirmish mode with an Exciting New skirmish mode with a different world map.

    I’d rather they focused on good skirmish from the start, basically, so they don’t just replace it with a more interesting variant each expansion.

    (2 campaigns would be nice, though. Da boyz need love too.)

    Additionally, the best part of the trailer (besides the warp spider being all smug, then blam) is the way the chainswords look and sound so very… meaty. They’re going to fuck things up in a way that power weapons, even the dreadnought’s power fists, can’t.

  10. subedii says:

    I don’t mind the lack of an Ork campaign. The fact that this is going to have the singleplayer campaign designed for co-op play is more than enough for me. I can’t think of a single other RTS that has a co-op main campaign, so props to Relic for giving us team mates to fight alongside.

  11. Fumarole says:

    “I can’t think of a single other RTS that has a co-op main campaign, so props to Relic for giving us team mates to fight alongside.”

    Red Alert 3 is to have a co-op campaign for each faction. And it’s about time RTS’ have this feature.

  12. Senethro says:

    Predicting Thousand Sons Chaos in the first expansion pack, where the storyline is the Blood Angels confronting the fact they are a loyalist fragment of a traitor legion.

    And also the Imperial Guard, who are there to make Chaos look suitably murder-tastic.

  13. Will Tomas says:

    I still think that someone should make a proper Necromunda game. But this does look fun.

  14. MetalCircus says:

    They really need to release a movie out of all that CGI stuff. I’d really love that.

  15. icegreentea says:

    I kind of think a return to the old CnC style campaigns would be nice. Basically, before every mission, you are taken to the map screen, where you are given a few choices in which mission you want to take. For example, the overall goal may be to assualt Cane’s uber lair. The mission before that may give you three choices. You can choose to knock out a supply chain in a commando like mission, stage a full scale attack on another location, or just plow through his giant army sitting on a hill. Sometimes this actually effects future battles, other times they don’t (the other commanders have taken the other missions or something), and in the end they don’t actually effect the story line (its still linear in the end).

    When your all done you can go back and play those missions you didn’t choose the first time or whatever. Sometimes you’re only given one choice. It adds a bit of extra variety and choice to single player. If you really like the ‘tactical’ missions, you could choose to play more of those. If you hate them, you can avoid the bulk of them.

    Like I said above, I think reintroducing this would be fun. If there are any new games that uses something like this (cnc series aside), please tell.

  16. i am the internet says:

    Yay! Now add Tyranids to Company of Heroes. And Homeworld. And, if you can swing it, Animal Crossing.

  17. JZ says:

    So glad to see some fresh Warhammer news to blow the geek fuses at RPS once again. I am hoping the Relic developers will throw us even more tasty references to 40k lore in the single player campaign.

  18. Lord_Mordja says:

    So you guys like gameplay, right? RIGHT?

    To Gamespot. Go.

  19. Noc says:

    A worry just occurred to me.

    I always thought a lot of the WK40k stuff was a little tongue-in-cheek. Sort of a similar sense of humor you get from TF2; the juxtaposition of watching the “Meet the Sammich” video right before this trailer made the inherently humorous nature of ultraviolence especially clear.

    I mean, it’s really just slapstick carried to a rediculous degree, isn’t it? I’ve this fear, though, that they won’t get it . . . that, instead of being hilarious ultraviolence delivered with a deadpan, they’ll try and make the Space Marines legitimate ultracool scifi badass types. And we all know how well that turns out.

  20. Sucram says:

    Tyranid preview and gameplay footage here (gamespot)

  21. Nick Halme says:

    I believe the term “Yay!” is insufficient in describing my excitement here, so imagine the word tied to a rocket ship full of barracudas on motorbikes, roaring towards the moon. This comes close to describing the joy :)

  22. Gurrah says:

    Liktor! FUCK YEAH! This is basically THE best news in gaming this year, for me at least.

  23. Korgan says:

    Senethro: You mean Blood Ravens, not BA. Also, I love TS but there can hardly be a campaign for them, seeing as most of them are just soulless automatons and can’t improve like other squads. The Alpha Legion is much better suited for a non-linear campaign, I think.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Hm. Alpha Legion could be interesting, given what GW’ve done with their fluff in Legion. Which is why they almost certainly won’t do it.

    Unless Abnett helped write the campaign for them, maybe…

  25. Raptornas says:

    It was Alpha’s last time around wasn’t it, they certainly didn’t fit with current fluff with all those demons. But anyway thank god for that, it was clearly ‘nid spores in the trailer but lictors beating the hell into cocky marines is always awesome.

  26. Dreamhacker says:

    As a long-time ork player, I applaud this rampant killing of SM and Eldar :D

    But how will they combine numberless Nid hordes with small-scale tactical squad based combat?

  27. Alex says:

    @Okami: Curse you!! Waiting for 3 months now… and feeling dorky since I placed the order. ;))

  28. Dean says:

    Hmm, disappointed there’s only the one campaign but I guess what it boils down to is the size of it. I couldn’t give a toss about multiplayer or skirmish so a crappy 8 mission campaign like the first DoW that can be finished in around 7 hours isn’t going to appeal much.
    On the other hand if they make the campaign into a meaty single-player stand-along game of 20 missions or so that feels like more than something that’s been shoe-horned in I’ll go for it.

  29. Hmm-hmm. says:

    Good. I think it’s good (and after the shorter cinematic trailer, expected as much) that they’ve added tyranids. Chaos has been done, really.

    Of course, who knows what future expansions will bring?

  30. Marc says:

    Glad the nids are in, I loved dawn of war especially dark crusade…. That said I am a bit underwhelmed by the nids currently, I’ll reserve final judgment until I see or get my hands on them but the zerg in starcraft just seem better some how. Yes know the zerg are basically a rip off of the nids but they…. well…. seem more swarm like and organic…

    Is it just me???

  31. Harlequin says:

    I love the Space Marines, but I’m sorry, that Lictor would have ripped that sergeant in half.

    The focus of Dawn of War has always been the Space Marines, but they really cheesed that ending up.

  32. monkeymonster says:

    Kudos to “i am the internet” can’t stop chuckling about the idea of Tyranids in Animal Crossing causing carnage.
    Running through 1-3 of original again before finally broaching soulstorm as TF2 had taken over all game playing….
    But a big Woot and a Yay (great white’s riding harley’s ftw) for DOW II

  33. CthulhuRlyeh says:

    Harlequin, I believe the intention was that the sergeant died about ten seconds after the end of the trailer. Actually, about five minutes, but spending the last four without legs.

  34. Dorian Cornelius Jasper says:


    I suspect a significant portion of the fanbase already takes the violence and darkness of 40K at face value, replacing the fun with Serious Business. If not a majority, then at least enough of these folks exist to make you wanna break out your Boyz and give those guys a good stompin’. Also, in the game.