DoW2: Retribution Gets Tyranids

Yep, the hive-dwelling bio-weaponised ones join Orks and Eldar as the next playable faction – playable in the single-player campaign, that is – for the big Dawn Of War 2 expansion, Retribution, as revealed in PC Gamer’s scoop. There’s also a trailer of the handsome aliens in action, which I’ve posted below. Go team ‘Nids!


  1. Gene says:

    Weren’t Tyraninds playable in the original DoW2? WTF?

  2. CoyoteTheClever says:

    He means campaign playable, not multiplayer playable

  3. plague says:

    Appears they are adding new heroes this time, you can catch a couple glimpses of a Tyranid Swarmlord in the trailer and an Eldar Autarch at 00:49 in.

    Heres hoping for a Chaplain for SM?

    • Rich says:

      Your wise counsel belies your years.

    • plague says:

      I am the Emperor’s will made manifest.

    • subedii says:

      The linked PC Gamer preview pretty much confirms it’s a Swarm Lord.

      Not sure how I feel about the idea of adding a new commander for each race (assuming that’s actually happening, I don’t think that’s actually been confirmed just yet. Swarm Lord might just end up being a high tier unit if it gets included in Multi).

      I mean I know there’s been people crying for this sort of thing, but the multiplayer is hard enough to balance with just three commanders per side, whilst keeping them all unique in their roles and how they affect their armies.

    • plague says:

      Honestly, I can see them adding new heroes opposed to a new playable race. There is a GameSpot interviewthat confirms the new Tyranid unit will be available in multiplayer. If they are referring to the Swarmlord, then the presence of the Autarch makes me believe it will be new heroes even more.

      link to

  4. Pete says:

    The Tyranid campaign should be a blast but… they speak? :(

    • Snidesworth says:

      I’m guessing that would be the hive mind. Or perhaps not. Synapse creatures are intelligent. Just inhumanly intelligent.

      Not sure if I like growly-monster-voice in any case.

    • Baka says:

      How did starcraft do it? It’s been so long now…

      At any rate, needs more DAKKA.

    • subedii says:

      Just the usual “Hive Voice” type thing.

      One thing I’ll say is that after playing Starcraft 2, I appreciate how much character and the sheer volume of voicework in Dawn of War 2. If you’re familiar with Company of Heroes you’ll know what I’m talking about as well.

      I mean in SC2 you’ve got your standard unit responses and they’ll shout for you if they’re under attack off screen, and that’s all OK.

      In DoW2 each race (well, each race that has a language) has a whole array of voicework. They’ve got lines for getting upgraded (and what type of upgrade). They’ve got different battlefield responses when you give them orders whilst under attack. They tell you if they’re in melee or ranged combat (usually if they’re a unit particularly vulnerable to it). They have proper responses for coming under suppressing fire, or if they’re getting hit by armour. They’ll even tell you what race they’re engaging, or if they spot allies in the field (again, race specific responses).

      Each of your units gets responses along those lines. Then you’ve got the Commander units who also have loads of unique dialogue for things like getting different sets of wargear, or race specific comments for helping a downed ally Commander.

      It’s crazy how much voicework they’ve got going on, pertaining not just to the side in question but also to all the other sides it’ll encounter. And each time there’s a new race they add in more voicework to the previous races to maintain consistency.

      I have to give some pretty big props to Relic for going out of their way like that.

    • plague says:

      I enjoy when you attack any sort of power generator as the Apothecary and he exclaims “Death to the greenskins!”

    • subedii says:

      “Zog off ya ‘umie vandals!” – Gretchin announcer when Ork structures are getting attacked by Space Marines. The announcers also get some pretty cool lines, like if Space Marines are engaging other Spacer Marines, he says something like “This day, we fight our own.”

      I remember now, they EVEN have lines for when armour is moving through infantry formations, and they’re moving aside to let it pass. “One side for the Ork machine, it corners poorly!”

      Although personally I tend to play Warp Spider.

      “Need I bathe and Swaddle you as well Human?”

    • kikito says:

      Fun fact: The only zerg unit that speaks is the changeling.

      When it turns into a zealot, it says something like “I’m looking for my cat. Have you seen it?”

    • bleeters says:

      I did find it amusing when I directed a squad to break open a supply crate in the singleplayer, and they’d proceed to bellow “Come, show me what passes for fury amongst your mis-begotten kind!” at the thing between firing, though.

      Even humble crates are the enemy of man, I guess.

    • jonfitt says:

      Have you not been playing games long? Crates and their violent cousins, Barrels are the greatest enemy of the human race!


  5. beefchief says:

    | want tau!

    • Rosti says:

      Ditto, but if this offers the “Wave after wave of my own men” strategy that usually follows ‘nid invasions I’ll still be a happy bunny. Biomass ahoy!

  6. Nallen says:

    Inb4zerg. By 18 months.

  7. Alexander Norris says:

    This is the news that several of the races from DoW2 will be playable in the DoW2 expansion that adds campaigns for the races from DoW2.

    In other news: could we have some actual news, Relic? Thanks in advance.

  8. Kakrafoon says:

    I want my Imperial Guard, not the orks, eldar or tyranids. If it’s too much of a bother, just import the British from Company of Heroes, do a quick reskin, swap the Enfields for lasrifles and they should be able to show those alien how the Imperium of Man wages war!

  9. Zinic says:

    Wait, didn’t they announce a while back that all the races would be playable in the single player campaign? I mean, I’m happy that Tyranids will be playable, but I was sorta hoping more that they’d add new races as well.

    • Optimaximal says:

      Did you, through some twisted logic, read ‘All’ to mean ‘every race that Games Workshop have ever introduced into 40K’?

      I mean, are you expecting a Squat campaign or something?

    • Dajaki says:

      Jokaero all the way.

    • Danarchist says:

      God a squat campaign would be epic! Sigh back to the same human-orc-space elf crud :(
      It’s just not the same without dwarves!

  10. Vandelay says:

    Does anyone know what is going to happen to the multiplayer for this and the former Dawn of War 2 games? As they are moving to Steamworks, will there be no interaction between the games, as there is in Company of Heroes?

    I haven’t bought any of the DoW2 games yet, but it sounds like it would be annoying not having access to all the multiplayer options in one package, if you already own the previous games (be that any missing races Retribution has or maps from the previous games.)

    I would be quite tempted by a complete pack when this is released. Hope there will be one at a reasonable price.

    • Theory says:

      They won’t be compatible, no. So I’m guessing that you’ll get everything in one package this time…and pay extra for it. :( Discount for existing owners please Relic!

    • subedii says:

      Well in the UK at least, Chaos Rising was priced as a full price title.

      Anyway, the basic rundown is this:

      – DoW2: Retribution is ditching GFWL and going purely with Steamworks
      – This breaks compatibility with the previous titles.
      – DoW2 and Chaos Rising will still be playable but won’t be upgraded with new sides / units anymore.
      – On the flip side, owning Retribution will give you access to ALL multiplayer races by default.

    • Vandelay says:

      Ah, so you don’t miss anything by just owning or playing through Retribution’s. Makes sense given the change in multiplayer structure.

      Just seen that this won’t actually be out until next year, so I may get hold of a copy of the originals before then.

  11. MadeOfWaaagggghhh says:

    So the other big secret new playable race is the same one they already did all animations, models and sounds for and that we all already played 1-2 campaigns against.

    Whoa nelly, not so much innovation, surprise and actually new content at once!
    We might not be able to fall asleep as fast in another round of 30-50 times replayed same-maps in the SP grind(let us hope they never, ever, EVER recommit that sin of the original release ever again).

    Seriously, what is it with the fun-aversion?
    I understand budget constraints and trying to milk something to have enough cash to eventually do something awesome and new, but…disappointed me is disappointed.

    • subedii says:

      “Seriously, what is it with the fun-aversion?”

      I’m pretty much wondering that at your post here.

      – New campaigns for ALL races (as opposed to just one campaign for one race) with reworked campaign mechanics.
      – New playable faction (as yet unannounced)
      – New unit(s) for all existing races.
      – Completely reworked multiplayer architecture from the ground up now that it’s no longer using GFWL.

      The following are guesses on my part, but also pretty likely
      – New maps for multiplayer
      – New heroes for Last Stand

      I’m not exactly seeing a dearth of content here. If anything I’ve been more worried that Relic are biting off more than they can chew with this one. Getting 5 races into a semblance of balance is a freaking mission on its own, 6 is just going to be tougher, especially if the rumours of a new Commander unit for each side are also true.

    • subedii says:

      For lack of an edit function:

      The PC Gamer article suggests they think that the new race is singleplayer only, but who knows. It’s never been the case previously that Relic have made a complete race available in Singleplayer and not made it playable in Multiplayer (there were units of Imperial Guard present in the SP before, but they don’t constitute an entire faction).

  12. SirKicksalot says:

    Who’s the tyranid voice, Dani Filth?

    link to (nsfw lol)

  13. coldwave says:


    Seriously though, I quit DoW2 MP after There Is Only War patch, it was THAT unbalanced.

    Then they dropped Chaos in and I didn’t even bother to check it out.

    Now they are adding Tyranid Swarmlord and some Eldar hero?

    Hell, why can’t Relic make a balanced game?

    • subedii says:

      Shockingly, games take time to balance, especially one with so many asymmetric sides. There is Only War was a massive revamp in the cored fundamentals of the multiplayer itself, it was always going to break balance.

      The balance is pretty decent now, probably a heck of a lot better than Company of Heroes. It’s never going to be possible to get 100% balance between all races and combinations, but in 99% of the games you play, it’s still going to come down to who’s the better player. I have to give genuine props to Relic for sticking with it all this time and continuing to update and change the multiplayer balance, they’ve seriously put a tonne of work into it.

      It’s kind of strange to be decrying how crappy the multiplayer balance is when you haven’t actually played it in over a year of solid updates. The fact that they’re moving to Steamworks instead of sticking with GFWL is a pretty big indicator of how much emphasis they’re putting into it. The only reasonable explanation for making such a huge shift is for the sake of the multiplayer (and in particular, the ability to make fast, light product updates instead of having to depend on bulky updates that take much longer to come out because of GFWL certification).

      Heck, Blizzard are currently making some hefty changes to balance in Starcraft 2, and that’s after a CRAZY amount of resources being spent on its balance, and a ridiculously long beta. It’s not that Blizzard are incompetent, or that they want to leave in completely stupid bugs like the Ultralisk’s Cleave (or some of the daft level design decisions), but there’s only so much testing you can do beforehand. If Blizzard need time to adjust the gameplay of their game after all that (and probably will for years to come if we’re honest), I’m amenable to the idea of cutting Relic some slack when they’ve got far less in terms of resources, and a lot more sides to deal with.

    • drewski says:

      “It’s kind of strange to be decrying how crappy the multiplayer balance is when you haven’t actually played it in over a year of solid updates.”

      Welcome to the internets. You’re not going to enjoy it.

  14. Icepick says:

    If the story implied by that video is accurate, it makes no sense! Everyone knows that the Imperium completely abandons worlds that have been touched by the Tyranids! They perform Exterminatus and then completely blacklist the planet forever!

    • Haplo says:

      Not necessarily. Only worlds where there’s no hope of defending or stemming the tide, or worlds too vulnerable. They’ll perform Exterminatus to deny the Hive Fleet biomass.

      If they can stop the Fleet or destroy it, the world is usually preserved- take Ultramar, for example, which was hit with a Tyranid invasion.

      This goes double when you factor in that these worlds are Chapter recruiting worlds- and Chapters are generally a force unto themselves when it comes to enforcing crap like that. And they’ll fight pretty much endlessly to preserve those worlds.

    • Mad Doc MacRae says:

      To me (who’s main experience with 40k backstory is from the games and a few wikis) it does seem a little suspect that they’d leave enough Tyranids behind to form a force worthy of a singleplayer campaign. But leaving some behind that are leaderless and no great strategic threat seems like a good way to get recruits experience. ;)

    • Icepick says:

      Ok, granted, but I still find it unlikely that they would allow anyone to live on a planet that still had LIVE Tyranids on it, or that they would just leave the Tyranids there instead of exterminating them.

    • Wandered In says:

      Listen, regarding leaving citizens of the Imperium near a splinter fleet: They Just Don’t Care.
      Anything less than a planetary loss is something to be fought, but not something they care enough about to try preventative measures.
      They have more reserves than one can imagine.
      And more t-shirts and flashlights than one would believe.

    • Haplo says:


      Cynical Idea Reply: What, wipe out the leftover Tyranids?

      And deprive potential recruits of that amazing chance to prove their worth?

      Get out of here. :|

  15. Pleonasm says:

    Hopefully, these other races won’t have the stupid game-ruining ‘teleport in infinite reinforcements for no cost’ thing the Space Marine campaign had that turns every battle into a relay-race between wherever the actual fighting is going on and the nearest drop-pod rather than requiring you to employ any actual tactical thinking.

    • Latro says:

      Doubt it. Not that it would be good, as the game has that fundamental defect – battles are an endless conveyor belt from respawn point to the frontlines -, but changing that is changing the whole engine of the game, something an expansion is not going to do

  16. bleeters says:

    I will eat your genes, I will eat them up.

  17. Haplo says:

    Man. I kinda hope those voices from the trailer aren’t the ones used for the actual Tyranid campaign.

    I remember in Multiplayer games with the Tyranids, the voices for the side was this very cool, tranquil voice that spoke very clearly and in a sort of monotone. I think it conveyed the Hive Mind better than hissy-growly speech.

  18. sneetch says:

    Sounds like Gollum is leading the Tyranids now.

  19. Heynes says:

    I’m hoping this multi-race campaign approach leads to shorter but more fun campaigns as opposed the boring campaigns that have been pumped out so far.

  20. Wulf says:

    I have just this to say.


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  22. ComVlad says:

    Hmm, I haven’t gotten around to looking up the preview material for retribution before(blame new vegas) so this i s my first time seeing the new logo. Is that an inquisitorial I in the middle of “retribution”? Could it mean that the unannounced race mentioned in the previews is going to be inquisition based (pretty please)?

  23. Haloahalo1234 says:

    Maybe they translated for us ’cause they know we dont understand.

  24. Davie says:

    Well, it’ll obviously be everyone getting a snazzy campaign then. Damn them and their building suspense to the announcement of the new faction….

  25. Ezhar says: