Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War Review (PC)
So as soon as I nabbed a copy, it was loaded and as I watched the intro, I realised that a great deal of thought appeared to have gone into it – it surpassed all my hopes and delivered a cut scene that could have been dragged out of my imagination & coded up – the sounds, colours & effects were everything I had visualised over the past few years, but as we all know many a game has a fantastic intro & then just delivers the same old same old!
To achieve anything you must, as always, collect resources to allow production of additional forces & research. In DoW, these come in 2 flavours – Requisition & Power (ok, the Orks have their own form of Requisition, Ork Resource) – Requisition is gathered via taking & holding Strategic points (or by building settlements & Waaagh banners if Ork) while power is obtained via power and thermo-plasma generators. TBH, these are both only really important in Skirmish mode and can to a large extent be ignored in the majority of the Campaign scenarios. Each race have their own builder units used to construct the required buildings & defences – Servitors for the Marines, Gretchin for Orks, Eldar have the Bonesinger whilst Chaos Marines (Boo Hiss) use Heretics. A lot of the buildings have prerequisite dependencies & can be used to research advancements. I personally love the way that the generators & defence turrets arrive with a satisfying thump from the orbiting dropships – just another example of attention to detail.
Mobile Armour comes in many flavours and can make a huge difference to any game. Most of the vehicles associated with 40K are available and I can only hope that in future releases others vehicles will be developed. For me, the Marines Dreadnoughts look, sound & behave just as I always imagined they would – from the initial “I Have Awoken” to the slow ponderous movement and then frenetic action that seems to happen in slow motion. Ork Wartraks speed around doing untold damage to just about anything, Eldar Grav Platforms hum satisfyingly as they hover around dispensing long range death and Chaos Defilers look like giant scorpions but are so much deadlier. In general, the vehicles appear to be well balanced, although the Marines Landraiders are almost unstoppable if paired up – even more so if loaded with a squad of Marines & Terminators. I have always been a lover of Terminators and, although infantry, they are easier to stick in the heavy armour class due to their sheer staying power – add the ability to teleport short distances to compensate for their slow speed and you have a very versatile unit.
The only real criticism of the game is that the campaign is very much on rails – there may be more than one way to do it but you are not exactly encouraged to seek it out. Skirmish mode is much like any other – you can set it anyway you like to get the best out of the game. The difficulty levels vary from easy to absolutely impossible – in fact from ‘hard’ upwards you have one hell of a fight on your hands. The great aspect of the skirmish is the ability to use your own designed chapters via the army painter. Whilst you cannot really ‘go to town’ and come up with something akin to what you can actually paint, you do have the full set of Citadel colours to use in creating your troops – as well as the correct colour schemes for various factions of each of the races (Ra Ra the Space Wolves – Fenris r00lz)
Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War Platinum Edition Trailer
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Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War Dark Crusade Movie
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