Dawn Of War 2 Footage

Relic still don’t seem to have really sold what Dawn Of War 2 is all about in their game footage and associated marketing jabber. Here’s what I wrote after I saw it in Vancouver almost a year ago: “What was great about the original game, such as its vicious melee combat and feeling of solidity, is going to provide cues for the new direction that this game moves in. DoW2 is a game that focuses on the actions of small team of personalised soldiers. Relic keep reiterating: this is a game where you are going to be focusing on the violent destruction of your enemies. It’s about “five or six squads of elite warriors” whose actions are going to define the course of galactic events in the Warhammer universe. It’s closer, and more intimate than the original game, discarding base-building and that anonymous production-line feel of the previous Dawn Of War games.” So think Diablo with squads of heavily armed space marines. Something like that.

A couple of minutes of footage beyond the cut show that. Shame it’s not something really meaty like the assault marines escaping from a collapsing bridge, or the fight with the ork warboss. Eurogamer have a more recent hands-on just here.


  1. thefanciestofpants says:

    Hooray for discarding base-building nonsense!

    Eagerly awaiting this one.

  2. Heliocentric says:

    They stand still in the open and shoot at each other. For 10 seconds.

    Give me a company of heroes squad destroyed by an mg in 2 seconds because they didn’t have cover any day.

    Yes marines are awesome, and orks are obscenely strong. They shouldn’t stand about firing pop guns at each other.

  3. Jim Rossignol says:

    Actually there is cover use in DoW2, just as in CoH. It’s just not particularly evident in that video.

  4. Heliocentric says:

    Fine. I’ll restrain my NCTCOH until i see more. But i want imperial guards to fall like fodder, less of this stand and shoot.

  5. Alex says:

    Being a 40k nut, I´m not convinced. I like the “Diablo with squads”-statement. Again, we are facing a game, that surrendered to the least common denominator of the gaming industry and has nothing to do with 40k, aside from Space Marines talking 40k-shit-talk.

  6. Dorian Cornelius Jasper says:

    I wonder what a DoW2 IG campaign would theoretically look like.

  7. SLDeviant says:

    Why has the whole world gone against base building, what they need to do is make it more layered and relevant to the game play. Rather than just build x to produce y to kill z.

  8. Dan Harris says:

    Quite looking forward to this, as DoW and Dark Crusade are the only RTS games that have held my attention long enough for me to finish – and I still found the resource management stuff dull in those. So this should be ace, sans building.

  9. Senethro says:

    Remember kids, there will be base building in multiplayer!

    Warm up those tear ducts!

  10. The Sombrero Kid says:

    my favorite story about CoH is that i thought they’d discarded base building in that until halfway through the single player campaign, i loved that and am uber excited about the direction they’re taking CoH and DoW, i’m excited about SC2 aswell though

  11. The Sombrero Kid says:

    @Senethro defiantly the right decision there, base building in multiplayer rts is integral, in single player rts it’s almost always tedious

  12. Tei says:

    Base building is a good thing. It let you add more rules that spawn more strategy. Say.. If you don’t control a area, you can’t build a turret. There are whole games based on turrets placement. There are whole games based on City design. So why is bad? is not bad. Baseless games are not bad either.
    IMHO baseless games feel more arcadey.. but that just me.

  13. Heliocentric says:

    Base building is not integral. What is integral is giving the players a way to make meaningful choices. And layered choices which allow the player the apply artistry to their play beyond the mathematics.

    World in conflict has some issues but not because of a lack of bases but because of a lack of meaningful choices. Sacrifice is an rts. Where you make your tech tree choices ahead of the battle like total was multiplayer. Also true in the original ground control which wic was based on.

    Its a turn based game but advanced wars has no base building but rather base capturing (in the latest you can build repair facilities). The units are meaningfully balanced and some are not “better” so to need holding back til a player has made certain investments.

    I’m not a hater of base building but often rather than being meaningful (perimeter or some tower defence maps /games) its just a crutch for a game with otherwise limited player expression.

  14. The Sombrero Kid says:

    i agree with you there, i was equating resource management to base building although i didn’t like advance wars i loved sacrifice :D

  15. Heliocentric says:

    If you didn’t enjoy advance wars i can only suggest you play multiplayer with fog of war turned on for the best experience and if its dual strike? Turn off the commanders.

    Oh. I an legally obligated the swear at any mention of relic which isn’t news on homeworld. Relic get back to homeworld 3 this bloody instant!

    …too much?

  16. Okami says:

    “Player Expression” should be the game marketing buzz word for 2009.

  17. The Apologist says:

    I loved DoW, and my instant reaction to any fundamental changes is fear.

    But this is relic! Loved CoH, loved Homeworld. If anyone deserves some faith, they do.

    @Heliocentric – I loved Advance Wars Dual Strike. Is the more recent one worth getting (bearing in mind I played the two previous installments)?

  18. Caiman says:

    This does look interesting, but why do all RTS games employ the same style of triggered confirmation sounds they’ve been using since Warcraft 2? “Yes sir!” “Move quickly!” “Without hesitation!” on every single damned click. I know you can turn these off, but why not a little more… I don’t know… realism?

  19. Turin Turambar says:

    Do you know whaht type of game i would love? Something more like the original tabletop game. I am saying something more in line with the battles the Total War saga, real time but slower and more realistic, and with big maps.

  20. Stuart W says:

    I agree with Turin Turambar. I’d prefer something actually less intimate, but grander – maybe even up to an epic scale. Larger battlefields with grander tactics akin to the total war series.

  21. Heliocentric says:

    Worth getting if you can find anyone to play it with. The single player content is thinner but the multi player is massively improved. Note, you can play it on-line, unfortunately the default is fog of war off… maddeningly. I think you can change it, I will investigate. The commanders are physically on the field, units get promotions leading to a more dynamic flow to the battle.

    Imp campaign could revolve around tanks, other stuff is replaced (perhaps automated infantry which you can direct where you keep your focus on the armour.

  22. Ginger Yellow says:

    “Why has the whole world gone against base building, what they need to do is make it more layered and relevant to the game play. Rather than just build x to produce y to kill z.”

    Indeed. I’m not particularly anti-this direction, but I would love to see a game which took the “base building” of Settlers and mixed it with proper RTS combat, rather than the pitiful version you normally get in city building games. By all means tone down the city building a bit, so you can handle both at once, but keep that idea of an interdependent economy/society.

  23. Switchbreak says:

    The one thing that makes me not scared of this new gameplay style is that it worked absolutely beautifully in the Myth series. And if anyone could live up to Bungie’s legacy for those games, it would be Relic.

  24. Senethro says:

    Advanced base building would lead to one of two scenarios. Either a Supreme Commander level Landscape Gardener/Town Planner which incidentally produces units which fight your enemies largely free of your interaction. This might end up as a sort of competitive Tower Defense (which is an interesting idea in itself! But not an RTS)

    Alternatively, if they give too much function and ability to the player for controlling units, you’ll get 2 minute unit rushes from players good at unit micromanagement who rather than trying to build a better base than you, will try to sap your “player attention” resource with too much to do. While this is the sort of RTS I’m most familiar with, you’d never see the higher levels of bases.

    Better to keep base building simple.

  25. Broseph says:

    +1 for the idea of a more tabletop 40k type of game.

    I don’t care too much for the time, money, and effort that goes into the tabletop these days, but I would LOVE a PC version of it. As long as the game rules make it feel tabletop-ish, all you gotta do is make a game mode for DoW where you don’t build bases, choose which units you get from a predetermined pool of resources, and pick where they start :).

  26. A Delicate Balance says:

    I’m not big into the base-less RTS. Ideally I’d like something that blended Supreme Commander, Company of Heroes and a bit of Sim City. One of the things I love most about “base building” is the defensive strategy involved. I love to create a base that is as close to impregnable as possible, whilst amassing enough different units to make a critical strike on the enemy. The placement of defensive structures and the order in which to build (and in some cases where to build) upgrade structures is a challenge I enjoy facing.

    I’m also not really into Warhammer, so, for me this game holds little direct interest, but I am curious as to what relic are doing with WAR II in case the new CoH follows a similar trend.

    I’ve been loving playing CoH online a lot recently, especially since I got Opposing Fronts, but if they make it any more small squad based or remove any of the current resource management, I don’t think I’ll be interested. In fact I think it’s kind of too bad that they aren’t adding another faction, especially for the Axis power, playing as the Japanese or perhaps the Italians might have been fun (ok who am I kidding the Italians would have sucked).

  27. Vriebert says:

    Base building in DoW is pretty meaningless anyway, it’s so linear. Can you still build turrets though? That’s a much more tactically interesting aspect of building. If nothing else, it gives you somewhere to fall back to when you mess up.

  28. Dude says:

    Seem to me that base building will be kept really simple in multiplayer, according to eurogamer:
    “They have: Force Commander, with the formidable melee skills of his single-player counterpart; Apothecary, exclusive to multiplayer, which is the healer unit, swift to revive fallen comrades; and Tech Marine, again multiplayer-only, who knows his way around a tool kit, able to construct defences, reinforcement points and turrets.”

    So reinforcement points? This might be interesting because I quite liked the way the British worked in COH, you can have reinforcement near the battle line it will make things more interesting than traditional base building. I guess the amount of reinforcement and their power will be decided by what you control on the battlefield, seeing that eurogamer talk about power/reinforcement and victory point to control.
    This could be quite interesting as you will have to choose what to go for at first….

  29. TheDeadlyShoe says:

    Yes there are turrets, even in Singleplayer. Being able to get them is apparently linked to the capture of certain structures in the campaign.

  30. RichPowers says:

    Base building is silly if your game focuses on squad-level combat. Why should a tank or infantry commander also be a quartermaster? Constructing the same buildings, in roughly the same order, map after map, simply to produce units, is boring and cliche.

    “Combat engineering” — placing sandbags, MG nests, med stations, barbed wire — is suitable for the battlefield commander. CoH has some of the best point defenses of any RTS, and they’re enjoyable to build and relevant to each particular battle.

    Resource gathering and unit production should be handled separate from battlefield operations (Total War). In this way, logistics remains an important aspect of the game, but not while you’re commanding armies in battle.

  31. Radiant says:

    I know a lot of people are going to be upset that it’s small squads and not the 40k million man death hill that it deserves but I personally can not wait to play this.
    I just finished Red Alert 3 and I’m aching for some more bananas rts gaming and small squads are something that is criminally underused in the genre.
    Although I do hope they up the enemy count to L4D numbers.
    But isn’t this coming out in 2010 or something ridiculous like that?

  32. SwiftRanger says:

    No, a multiplayer beta for those with Soulstorm keys was even planned for the end of this year but I am afraid it’s gonna slip.

    Game itself is for Spring 2009.

  33. KBKarma says:

    I’ve just finished reading a few books from Black Library, and I have just one question:

    Is there going to be an Imperial Commissar called Cain? If so, I’ll buy this game within a heartbeat.

  34. Doctor_Hellsturm says:

    Please god let the mulitplayer/skirmish be on par with COH and this is a 09-saver!

  35. Crispy says:

    Is it me or is the HUD looking very Blizzard-esque?

    You can only take the Advance Wars reference so far, it being turn-based and this being real-time strategy. I love Advance Wars (Dark Conflict, or whatever the US name for it is), I’ve poured over 260 hours into it and made 5 maps using its excellent map maker to boot. Its simplicity is its strength, the way your units’ health % modifies your attack and defence power (and how quickly you capture) gives it an amazing amount of depth.

    Base building isn’t necessarily a bad thing, in most games it’s intrinsic to the resource management side of the game; do you spend cash on repairing a unit, producing a unit, building a structure, repairing a structure or researching a technology? But if you are removing it from the game the combat really needs to have enough depth to justify it. You need to have such depth in combat that you can’t just do what we saw happen in the video: two teams standing in the open doing chip damage to eachother.

    To be honest I don’t know why they released that video in particular, it’s a poor reflection on what we’re hoping they aim to achieve with DoW 2.

  36. Jochen Scheisse says:

    I like the base less idea, could be very fun. Maybe they will give us a point based setup for multiplayer matches.

  37. on says:

    Dawn Of War = very good
    Warhammer: Mark of Chaos = very BAD i hate it
    Dawn Of War II = Warhammer: Mark of Chaos = VERY BAD why