Dawn of War 2: Review

Posted by admin On August - 31 - 2010

Dawn of War 2 (DOW2) is a great RTS game.  It has changed the way I look at RTS games.  It almost deserves a game category of its own.At the games heart it is an RTS game, but it diverges from the traditional RTS in that you do not have to build a base.  This game is all about unit control.  Which has some aspects of a RPG game.

In DOW2 you must move your units from one area to another.  Each unit has its own strengths and weaknesses.  Nearly everything in the game is destroyable and you can hide behind blown out walls, hide inside buildings.  The tactical aspect of this game using cover, and focusing on units rather than your base.

In nearly every RTS game I have played I have always enjoyed building up large armies and watching the fight unfold on the screen timing a flanking maneuver to turn the tide of a battle or sending units in a all out assault.  Watching these epic battles unfold has always been more fun to me then watching your base making sure resource gathers are doing their job.

In DOW2 to get resources, you must capture and hold points in the map.  This capture system puts players in to contact often and early.  Positioning your units in opportune cover can be the difference between holding a point and losing a squad.  As the game progresses and more and more technology is unlocked, by spending the capture points acquired by fighting, tanks become a vital part of the game.  But even as the “super weapons” begin to take over, a couple squads of space marines if equipped properly can destroy the new fancy tank.

The downside to DOW2 is the number of playable factions is limited.  In the first Dawn of War 2 there were 8 factions.  Space Marines, Imperial Guard, Necrons, Tau, Eldar, Chaos, Dark Eldar, and Orks.  However in DOW2 to date the factions include: Space Marines, Eldar, Orks, Trynarids, and Chaos (introduced in the first expansion).  A new expansion has been announced and is claiming to be adding a new faction.  As seen in multiplayer the art for Tau and Imperial Guards is already in the game hopefully both factions will be added as well as a third factions that we have seen no animations for yet.

The second disappointing thing for me at least is the did away with the single player map conquest from DOW 1.  In DOW1 there was a turn based campign that allowed you to select which territory you were going to attack and use points you acquired to fortify positions.  You had the choice to auto resolve the attack to control it yourself.  After your turn was up the computer would each have a turn in which they would attack each other or you depending on what they were trying to get.  The way to win the game would be to take out each faction’s capital.

By adding all the factions from the original DOW and the DOW1 Risk style single player options I think DOW2 would be immensely better.  DOW2 has 1 expansion Chaos Rising out currently and another one on the way.  In the new Expansion, a new faction will be introduced but they are not saying what that faction is yet.

DOW2 is a game of constant act and counter.  Keeping the action on the battlefield and keeping the chess game flowing makes Dawn of War 2 a must buy!!

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