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Warhammer 40.000: Dawn of War (PC)

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19 Reviews

Published by: THQ / Genre: Strategy / Release date: 2006-10-06 / Subcategory: /Strategy/Sci-Fi

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    19 Reviews
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      31.05.2012 22:23
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      Very good game

      Dawn of war (DoW) is a strategy game which delivers things that I personally believe no other strategy game has since or ever achieved. It combines futuristic weapons on units from sci fi games, with the strategy setting, but adds the close range swords etc fighting like older RTS, with almost cinematic qualities! The results speak for themselves:

      Ok, to start off with, This DoW is the first in a series of 4 (they then made DoW 2, and started a new series. I have never played this series, but I have heard it is not as good as the original series). Anyway, in this CD, you get 4 races, the space marines, the decendents of humans, who are genetically engineers and harshly trained to capture land in the name of the emperor (these sort of play the good guys if you like), the chaos marines, space marines who have been corrupted by the power of deamons, orks, barbaric trolls who are just bloodthirsty, and fight with anything they can, even each other, and finally the elder, an ancient race who used to be the top in the galaxy, but have gone past their prime, and hold incredible technological advantages.

      In this game each race has different tech trees, buildings, units etc. Infact no 2 races have overlapping units (although some are pretty similar). This means you have to adapt your playstyle to suit the race that you are currently playing. For example, Orks are good at having huge amounts of soliders (compared with other races), however they lack any real technology, and have very basic weapons, and have poor accuracy with shots, so you are better off trying to rush in and cut your opponents up with axes, and even impact grenades! This is kinda cool because it reflects the persona of the orks, very crude soliders. Whereas say the eldar, are very nimble fragile race, who fight with tanks that can fly into a zone, or with soliders that can warp from area to area (whereas the orks version of this is simply trolls who strap rockets to themselves! How i love playing the orks!).

      ANyway, as well as this, the game has a nice audio. Each unit in each race interacts differently, and sometimes say funny or cool things (Please... no more kicking, the little gremlins builders of the orks say, or their life has come to termination, as the space marine assulat terminator squad says).

      This is made awesome by the fight scenes as well. Each unit squad has various spells and abilities (like throwing grenades, anti tank/building bombs and so on. This adds a new element to the game by allowing you to feel more involved in the fights.

      The only problem with this game is because of the above point, you have to constantly ensure you are at the fight scene, but your opponent if it is a computer, seems to be able to have all their squads doing spells and stuff... whilst building new buildings etc. It makes it a bit tricky sometimes.

      The graphics on this game are pretty dang good... especially for a game of this age. So overall, I would say this is a complete game.

      It also has a few gameplay modes, such as campaign and skirmish, and you can even go to an army painter, and create your own colours for your army (but I have never tried this out, so sadly I cannot comment on it).

      Overall if you like scifi games, or RTS games, this is a must have for you. One thing you have to get used to in this game though is the resource system, its all about capturing certain points, so it means you have to make an army right from the start in order to ensure that you get some resource.

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      14.04.2010 00:31

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      Recommended for fans of RTS and warhammer

      Dawn of war is a real time strategy game from THQ and Relic Entertainment. Now I've already said in a previous review that I was not interested in the table top game from Warhammer 40K however I have been a fan of the Sci Fi idea behind the series and so decided to give this a try.

      I was pleasantly surprised by what I found, DoW is an incredibly immersive game. The single player campaign alone took me roughly 18 hours to complete and allows you to take control of a Space Marine faction the Blood Ravens who were created specifically for this game universe. As an RTS it features your basic resource management which you harvest allowing you to build bigger and better troops and vehicles. There is a degree of customisation as each squad can be upgraded individually to perform well against certain enemy types. The story is also typical warhammer grandeur with the fate of an entire planet at stake and a variety of enemies including orks, elder and chaos marines.

      The multiplayer is also pretty good allowing you to take command of one of 4 playable factions as mentioned above. There is also some visual customisation as you can change the paint scheme for your armies and name them so they are unique to you.

      If you enjoy this game be sure to check out the 3 expansions as well as the sequel Dawn of War 2.

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      24.03.2010 19:48
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      great warhammer game

      This attempt at a warhammer game got it right weve had to put up with such tripe as tau fire warrior and space hulk.The first thing that grabs you about this game is the world its self the graphics are amazing even in low detail mode and when you zoom in you can tell alot of effort went into the texturing of the models.

      The first cut scene of the game is breath taking and will amaze you it feels like a animated movie and can match graphics of most of todays top aniamted films. I would buy it for this cut scene alone.
      The basic concept of the game is each level you have a goal and you must complete this goal, the goal could be destory an enemy base or kill a certain character. To achieve this you build your base and collect resources of the level. With each new building giving you new character choices or upgrades you can buy new troopes or give them better weapons for the mission they have.

      The game levels are nice to look at them selves and the character AI seems to work well, players move around the scenery with no collisions.
      There is the single player campagin mode where you take first the role of the imperial gaurd then the space marines, as the space marines you have to defend yourself while killing the three enemy races, orcs, eldar and chaos. Each race as unique to them selves troops and characters each with different weapons and upgrades.

      The multiplayer mode is a two to eight player battle either online or over a LAN network, this is good fun with plenty of maps to choice from.
      The game lets you even choose a group from one of the main anrmies (like if you selected space marines you could then select blood angels) and paint them in your own choice of colours, even renaming the army if you wish.

      Now ill try and go more in depth about the game as people say i dont give enough info so tell me if i do a good job, when you start on each level your goal is told to you, then you are even given the troops you must do this mission with or you are given a builder.
      This builder then allows you to create other buildings which you will use to build troops and research better upgrades for your troops that you have.

      On each level you will find resource spots on these you build a collector which then allows you to start gathering a type of money (its not really money but it acts like money) you must also build power plants to gain power.
      Once you have completed this you then have you troops which you can easily control with simple mouse clicks and keyboard buttons, the control the game is very simple with very little keyboard buttons and mainly the mouse been used with the left and right button, this makes the game smooth to play as well as the fact that the middle or mouse wheel is not really needed only to zoom.

      Like i have said your troops have special ablities which are loacted in a box on the right hand corner of the screen with a simple mouse click you can acitvate certain moves or powers.
      The story line behind the game is the space marine plnet is under threat from orcs and the other races and you must defend it, this isnt as easy as it sounds some of the levels need clear thinking and some cunning game plans or you will just charge into your death.

      I really do love the multiplayer game there are a number of very different maps to choose from, each map designed for a certain number of players, you can mix human with AI opponents or even just have all AI, the games last from 10 mins to 3 hours depending on the setting of the AI even with a low AI setting ( like easy ) the game is still a challenge!
      This game is a classic its so much fun to play its blast!!

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      28.01.2010 01:36
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      good game worth buying in my opinion

      Ok i am a bit of a fan of the warhammer figures myself and then they started bringing out all these games........ i was thinking that they would be a disaster until i found this. i never played a futuristic stratagy war game before, normally i play things like "age of empires" and similar medeival games. I soon changed my gaming style when i played this, i was blown away when i experianced the intense action of D.O.W.
      Knock yourself out with mass armies or keep it small and take the more "stelthy" approach. oviously you there is a limit so you cant go too crazy with nummbers. you can see your unit limit by looking at your..... well sort of like a "resource"..... anyways Warhammer 40K: Dawn Of War basicly consists of 4 races. Space Marines, Chaos Marines, Eldars and Orks.
      in the expansion pack there is an added race...the "imperial army". But back to this game. oviously as you may very well know you cant build an army without a base, so we build one :-). Each race has different types of buildings but for this i will just talk about the Space Marines (the ingame tutorial willexplain the others as you play them). So basicly to start with you will need to build these things, a stronghold (will already be built, if not build one) you will need a chapel-barracks for building your basic units, a armory for researching upgrades and machine cult for building vehicle units. for defence you may build mine fields and turrets.as you advance on the battlefield you will need to capture strategic points or relics, once you have done so reinforce them with a listing post and this may be upgraded for stronger defence.

      Once you have built these and gathered your forces, you must now put them to the test. you may pick to charge and go in quickly and take them by surprise, advance the battlefield slowly capturing strategic points along the way or just choose and make up your own approach. however you ake your way to their base there will be a lot of action waiting for you when you arrive. graphics in this game stand out from most of these stratagy games and you can also paint your armies with the army painter on the main menu and make your army unique to you for when you go online and take on fellow warhammer fans. the online feature is quite fun in my perspective, you can choose how many players you have oviously the more players the harder for you:-). once you pick your server basicly kick the livin day lights out of each other.
      Buy the game, play the game and you definatly wont be dissapointed!!!

      p.s i am the original writer of this review that i posted on ciao firsthand

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        10.06.2009 14:39
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        A great game for anyone to try.

        Y'know, as much as I wanted to write and say that this is the first game that Games Workshop have got right...it's not. Games Workshop actually have a long history of high quality computer games, but perhaps this is the first one that I can say is successful.

        Dawn of War places you primarily in command of the Blood Ravens chapter of the Adeptus Astartes Space Marines. You take command of a small army of super human, power armoured, chainsword wielding warriors. The game also features options for playing as Chaos Space Marines, Eldar, and Orks - all of whom morally oppose your own Space Marine forces.

        Dawn of War comes with both single and multi player options. The single player game primarily takes the form of a narrative campaign with you in command of Captain Gabriel Angelos, the hero of the piece. Without giving too much of the storyline away you are attempting to stop what your hero perceives as a joint Eldar and Chaos invasion of a planet, though the storyline does develop much more than that.

        The storyline as a whole is actually quite in depth, and whilst not exactly a literary masterpiece, certainly fits with a good part of Games Workshop's own written background, the only minor grumble was that the Blood Ravens appear to have been created to fit the game and then have been shoehorned into the tabletop games fluff to sell that too - it's a minor grumble as, to be fair, it makes a hell of a lot of sense for the company to use the PC game to sell the tabletop, it's not malicious, it's just clever marketing.

        In the single player arena you also have the now standard RTS skirmish mode, allowing you to pick your army (and design your own colour scheme to match your tabletop favourites - top feature!) and pick your opponents and battlefield. This adds some longevity to the game for when you have finished the campaign. The multiplayer mode also uses this general setup.

        -Base Building-
        As with all RTS games (or most anyway) you are required to build your own base up before crushing the enemy hordes. Dawn of War is no exception, with you usually starting with a pre deployed fortress and having to build power generating functions, vehicle construction facilities, and the sort from it.

        What is nice is that this is actually done in quite a fluff (i.e. background) driven way. Space Marines have their buildings dropped in by aircraft precisely, Eldar bone singers craft their buildings from living bone, Orks haphazardly drop their buildings from underneath a passing bomber. It all feels rather logical.

        What does not feel so logical is resource collection. This is done in a kind of take and hold style play. There are two major resources needed to create units, power (which you can build yourself) and recquisition - this second one you have to capture various strategic points around the map, fortify them, and protect them from the enemy, all just to get a dribble in - think of it like oil derricks in Command and Conquer or something like that. It works, it just doesn't feel right - but then I actually have no better suggestions for the makers so I'll drop that here.

        Overall the game's solid - the units have the right weapons options generally, the voices sound pretty good, and the sides feel balanced. The vehicles are perhaps the let down, they feel awkward and clunky a lot of the time, but that's something for the game engine perhaps - or maybe it's just how they're meant to feel!

        In any case the game is great fun to play, and well worth a buy for either Warhammer fan, or RTS fan alike.

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        25.05.2009 13:59

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        Great RTS, One Of The Best Made.

        Back when I was 10 I used to collect, build, paint and battle with Warhammer 4000 (nerd alert). So when I heard they were releasing a RTS game based on the 40k universe I was quite intrigued. I love RTSs and I used to love Warhammer 40k, what could go wrong? The answer? Not a lot.

        Now while a Warhammer fan would instantly recognise the different between the factions and each unit, the game is quite inviting for new players. With a great tutorial that teaches you the basics of the game and introduces you to several units it wont be too long until you know your Lascannon from your Plasma Pistol.

        The game comes with 4 civilisations, the Space Marines, the Eldar, Orks and the Chaos Space Marines. Each have their own strengths and weaknesses and their own individual tech tree, however as the units vary greatly the game ends up slightly unbalanced so its best if you can get online and download the latest patches.

        The campaign mode is excellent, it follows the Blood Ravens of the Space Marines as they receive a distress call they discover a sinister plot where all is not what it seems. The story is absolutely engrossing and has many twists and turns. The only problem with the campaign is that its only based around the Space Marines, there are no missions for the other factions. While this isn't that big of a problem it would have been nice to play as the others.

        The basic idea of the game is that you start with your HQ and nothing more. After training up a few troops, you can then capture points on the map to supply you with additional resources. This type of play ensures than your leaving the comfort of your main base early on and almost guarantees early battles. This is a smart move by THQ and it works, the whole game usually consists of battles for these strategic points.

        DoW looks absolutely excellent. The character models are brilliant and each unit has its own animations. You have the ability to zoom right into the battle and view it from any angle or perspective you wish. Its here that you really see the magic unfold. The death animations are great, as you see your Space Marine rip through the enemy ork with his chainsaw, or the deadly Dreadnought pick up a Chaos Marine and rip him in half, they are truly gruesome and look great. A mention also has to go to he opening animation which is breathtaking, it feels like your watching some Hollywood CGI movie.

        Overall Dawn of War is an enjoyable RTS that requires a lot more aggressive play than the likes of Age of Empires or any other collect your resources, build your army, attack sort of RTS. DoW looks great, sounds great and plays great. A Classic.

        Andy Creighton

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        23.05.2009 06:58
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        Excellent graphics quality..

        In my opinion, Dawn of War isn't the best RTS I've ever played, but its damn close of getting there.The game concept is same as any other RTS game I played, build a base, accumulate tons of resources, build an overwhelming army before the other team and point and click to the enemy base and let your army rampage towards your enemy. If you ever played its predecessor, the Warhammer which is based on the fantasy realm, with elves, dwarfs and such.The difference is that Warhammer 40,000 is based on the future, with space marines and weird alien forces to contend with.

        This game allows you to play with four of the more well known futuristic races. They are: The Space Marines (humans with special suits of armour), the Eldar (like Elves, but futuristic), the Orks (Orcs, but spelt with a K) and The Realm of Chaos (evil, corrupted humans). Different sides with distinctive styles of play to suit all player types and its hand to hand combat is not only really cool to watch but aviable option in battles.

        There is also an added humor to the game in which some Orks are very comical... lol...And to top it all, the graphics of the game is also very excellent.

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        29.03.2009 22:43
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        a great strategy game, pick it up if you can.

        Dawn of war was released late 2004 and is the first of many games of the dawn of war series.

        Having collected warhammer 40K when I was young, this game certainly brought the board game to life, with amazing combat, neat visuals and detailed representations of the real models all round.

        What Teams are in DoW? There are 4 teams in the first game, these being eldar, chaos, orks and space marines. Teams are more or less balanced, some being slightly harder to play than others. Each team has their advantages and disadvantages, ie Space marines are all round strong fighters but cost alot to build whereas orcs are numerous and weaker but cheaper to build.

        There are a huge variety of units available, foot soldiers, generals, commanders, assault, long range, and you have the ability to equip each squad with some stronger weapons ie heavy Bolters or flamers. Each team also has their ultimate unit, their strongest unit which all look fantastic.

        The fighting in the game is immense, close combat is great to look at aswell as the roaring explosions of tanks and demons. You construct units by the construction of buildings as in most strategy games. Buildings themselves vary on the team, with the metallic space marines to the demon-fleshy chaos buildings.

        There is ofc a campain in the game in which the plot revolves around the Imperial Guard, the human race who you don't really get to play in the 1st game, whos planet is being invaded by the orks and are needing the help of the Blood Ravens who you play as alot of the time. That is it in a nut shell, with some twists and bouts of corrupton which makes it all the more interesting.

        There is online aswell, featuring many different types of playable maps and game modes ie skirmish etc. You can get ranked depending on your wins or losses, and it's a fun decent way to battle other people, however some people can be perhaps a little too hard and armies can be unfair sometimes. There are also skirmishes you can play offline against the PC where you can customise your army. The customised army can also be used to play online and show the world.

        Even if you are not a fan or have never played the Warhammer board game, this game has loads to offer, with 4 totally different-looking races and some pretty amazing gameplay. For around 7 pounds it's a steal, and can now often be purchased as a 3 in one game with other expansion packs attached.

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          26.10.2008 11:14
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          The best real time strategy game to date (buy the Anthology though!)

          Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War is, to date, the best RTS game I have found. I have been a great fan of this genre since Dune 2 first came out on the PC, and have avidly collected and played games like this ever since.

          Graphically, Dawn of War excels with amazing levels of unit detail and a massive range of animations. If you're a fan of painting model miniatures, you can even customise your army on the PC to some extent - if, like me, you have little or no artistic talent, there's a good range of pre-built colour schemes available.

          The sound is pretty stunning too. Every unit has been carefully scripted with a range of responses and voice actors provide apt, funny and sometimes down-right scary vocals for each character in the game.

          The gameplay is what sets this game apart. It uses a fairly simple resource model: Power and Requisition are all you need. Both are generated by structures, so there's no "harvesting" units to protect, letting you focus on the battle instead of defending your income.

          Power is gained by building power generators, and used when building some units and buildings - there's no drain like in some other RTS games.

          Requisition is gained by claiming important locations on the map. Each location captured provides a steady income, and the most common type can be enhanced with buildings that provide line-of-sight, defend the location from recapture, and enhance the resource production rate.

          Orks have an additional resource, known as "Waargh!" This is generated by constructing certain structures, and provides both a resource for building units and increases the unit limit. Unlike any other race, the tech tree is advanced not just with new structures, but also by increasing the size of your army.

          Due to the simplified resource structure, the base building part of the game is easily pushed to the back of your mind with no ill effect... letting you focus on the battles.

          Here, again, Dawn of War is unique in my experience. Instead of building single units, you focus on squads, which can be upgraded and expanded once built. If a squad member is lost in battle, he can be replaced in the field - there's no need for the long (and often dangerous) journey from your base to the front-lines. This makes each squad far more valuable an asset, as even a 2 man squad can be salvaged and sent back into the fray.

          The final gameplay enhancement is the addition of Morale for each squad. This has been done before, but never with such clear effect - a broken squad (one with low morale) will turn and run instead of fighting, and will fight far less effectively than one with full morale. Certain units - sergeants and the like - can restore the morale of a squad, and the impact is immediately obvious.

          This game plays fantastically on my high end desktop gaming PC; but is still playable even on my cheap laptop with no gaming graphics card.

          The only down-side is that the single player campaign only lets you play as one of the 4 available races, leaving a lot less single-player repeatability.

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          08.09.2008 17:16
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          A great game that had me hooked for months.

          THQ's new franchise taking after the War Hammer 40k universe started it's bold adventure towards trying to capture that vast galaxy with this title. Dawn of War was arguably the first RTS game which introduced the squad based unit system which was re-used in Company of Heroes.

          The game is simple enough. Capture tactical locations to earn more points, gather either money or energy *depending on your race* to purchase more units/buildings.

          The first thing you realize is how gruesome this game is. True to the spirit of WH40k's universe the units are all blood thirsty, angry people who could ALL benefit from a little anger therapy. There is one exception with the orks, who are frankly not only angry, but stupid, and the things they say serve to force a chuckle out of you. It's almost enough to make you forgive them if they overrun your base and kill you one day.

          "Oh those Orkies" you'd say.

          The combat system is also pretty neat. The heroes you have for example, will perform different moves depending on whether they gave the killing blow or not. My favorite was when when I killed one of the big units with this little human hero character, whom proceeded to jump onto the face of said big unit, and stabbing violently until the unit collapsed and died. It's little realistic traits like that which made watching the battle intensely fun.

          Though DoW tried to keep the resource aspect of the game to the minimal they did fail to keep it somewhat controlled. The beginning of the game your waiting eagerly for those points to build up, and there is indeed a challenge. However near the halfway point you'll start finding yourself having more then you can use, and about 3/4ths of the way in you've completely stopped paying attention to your resources and you just click whatever you want as many times as you can want it.

          While this will provide the freedom to build what you want, it does remove the element of strategic planning.

          Of course, I do enjoy the occasional mass building of infantry and throwing them into a battle I know they can't win! Who cares, i've got enough resources to rebuild them 10 fold.

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          11.08.2008 19:04
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          brillian stratergy game

          Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War is a revolution for gaming. It starts of with one of the best cinematics ive ever seen.
          It is a strategy game where you have to build generators for energy.
          You have to secure strategic points and build lisnening post on them and then these to thing help you build a base and an army.
          There are four races you can play as in the skirmish :
          Space marines (genetically modified humans)
          Chaos Space marines (space marines gone bad)
          orks (green stupid creatures)
          Eldar (an old powerful race with lots of tech)
          But you can only play as the Space marines in the campaign.
          in the campaign there is a great storyline wich starts of with the orks against the sppace marines but i wont tell you any more.
          There are three disks for instalation but once that is done you only need one.
          The characters are brilliant and so are the graphics.
          if you like warhammer youll love it. if you dont youll love it

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            25.10.2007 14:30
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            A fiery, genre-defining game that well deserves its Game of the Year 2004 status.

            There is a cry of surprise and out of nowhere comes a series of crunching explosions as drop pods crash to the surface of the planet. As the ramps crash into the dirt there is a fierce cry – “Space Marines, ATTACK!” – and suddenly fire is blazing in all directions. Pulling out blades the size of their forearms the Space Marines of the Blood Ravens Chapter charge yelling into ranks of green skinned Orks, laying about them to left and right, supported from behind by thundering heavy bolter fire, a Dreadnought smashing enemies aside and laying down a wall of lead from its assault cannon.

            Let me freeze the frame. If blood is not your thing, look away now, because there’s lots of it. Marines and Orks finish each other off with profusions of gore, kicking their foes’ broken carcasses to one side and moving on. Explosions are everywhere, and bolts of light from machine guns and laser fire slash left and right. The blasted landscape is further blackened.

            If you have played Warhammer 40,000 before, then you will probably be nodding sagely and noting that the Blood Ravens Chapter has been invented by game developers Relic and THQ. If you have never played Warhammer, then you are probably wondering what I’m going on about. Space Marines? Orks spelt with a K?

            As Games Workshop (the producers of Warhammer) like to say: “In the grim darkness of the 41st Millennium there is only war.” And that pretty much sums it up – the general idea is that you choose a race and blow out the brains of the opposing army with a malicious grin on your face. Keeps kids off street corners apparently. That having been said, each race has a huge back-story that is constantly being added to, that basically explains why they are so upset with each other. Of the roughly eight (I think) armies offered by Games Workshop four are playable in Dawn of War (DOW) and three more are offered by the two expansions. The Tyranids (big scary alien things with lots of claws) are set to be offered in DOW 2 because they’re so much harder to animate, being the only non-humanoid-ish race. Let me roughly set out the four offered in the game.

            SPACE MARINES: Are genetically modified men, encased in massive suits of “power armour” and equipped with the finest weapons man has to offer. They rely on skill at arms over numbers, and can fight effectively in close combat as well as at range, able to deploy later in the game via teleporter attack or drop pods.

            ORKS: Are green-skinned, thuggish and tribal, as happy beating up each other as enemies. Roughly similar to Orcs in the Lord of the Rings sense, but with guns, they rely on vast numbers, stupidity in the face of impossible odds and brute close combat strength to carry the day. Everything they build is fairly dodgy, but also fairly deadly.

            CHAOS: Are Space Marines that have sort of turned to the dark side, embracing the “Chaos Gods.” They fight similarly to normal Space Marines, but have a tendency to mutate into vicious daemons and generally enjoy blood a bit too much.

            ELDAR: Are basically elves in armour. They are dainty, fast warriors with great skill at arms, but rely on speed and stealth rather than toughness to carry the day. They speak in eldritch airy-fairy tones suggesting that they only suffer your meagre intelligence because they have to, and spend their time playing with magic and being secretive know-it-alls.

            The Imperial Guard, weaker, non-GM allies of the Space Marines also get a look in during the campaign before the Winter Assault Expansion pack where they become a fully fledged race.


            GAMEPLAY

            The gameplay is what sets DOW aside from other RTS offerings – there is a reason why it received the Game of the Year Award in 2004. As I have bemoaned before, most strategy games involve no concept of realistic violence. Men wander up to each other; fire off bullets unenthusiastically and then move on. Soldiers are completely lacking in personality.

            Not so in DOW. Remember the first paragraph? It is no exaggeration – battles are fantastically cinematic affairs – pause the game and the camera can be zoomed and rotated to get the best angle of men flying in all directions, or the final bloody confrontation of a sword swinging Eldar Avatar clashing with the axe-wielding, winged, horned monstrosity of a Chaos Bloodthirster.

            Add to this the fact that troops are less accurate when firing and moving, can use cover, and suffer from loss of morale as well as life-shortening bullets, and you have a strategy game that involves beating the stuffing out of your opponents without losing the strategy element. While you are forced to micro-manage your soldiers, adding more men, upgrading weapons for each squad and so on, this ensures you are always where the action is, and the resource system means that base building is a relatively simple affair compared with fighting.

            You only have two resources – power and requisition. Requisition is gained by controlling “strategic points,” (which you generally have to fight for) and power is gained by constructing generators. Neither of these takes up enough effort to detract from the main focus of the action, so battles are intense and normally short-lived affairs of about 15-30 minutes, unlike some other games, which often reach four-hours-and-still-counting deadlocks. Control the strategic points and you tend to be able to win if you manage your men carefully. They really are strategic.

            And all the while you are fighting, your men talk to you and each other, always in dramatic tones, but not over the top. The Space Marines sound deep voiced and tough, Eldar haughty, Orks thick and Chaos mad. Because your men have a personality, you are much less willing to throw away their lives and buy more. There is lots of speech, but here are some of the best:

            “Hahaha…They do not have a prayer.” [Space Marines]

            “Err, boss, we is getting shot up!” [Orks]

            “Do you hear the voices too?!” [Chaos]

            Another nice touch is the ability to ‘paint’ your army, choosing from a wide pallet and then adding markings and banners. If you want an army of pink-clad, genetically enhanced super soldiers then you can have them. My army is orange and black in case you wondered.


            STORY

            Skirmishes against either the computer or other humans are almost enough of a game in themselves, with AI ranging from easy (far too easy) to insane (I may have beaten it about once) but there is the campaign too. This follows the Blood Ravens Chapter as they are called to the planet Tartarus to fight an Ork Waaaaagh! (a crusade sort of thing, but with Orks) that is getting out of hand. It is not long before they realise that something considerably more sinister is behind the attacks than a Warboss uniting the tribes…

            It’s not exactly the stuff of bestselling novels, but for a strategy game it really is rather exciting, although a good deal of the coolness will be lost to those who aren’t familiar with Warhammer.


            GRAPHICS

            Graphics are fairly cartoonish and bright, which is good because it means the game doesn’t become depressingly gory – it’s violent, but it’s not too dark. From the normal command view they look dramatic and attractive, zoom in and they become a bit rougher, but the action pretty much makes up for that.

            The graphics are powered by a heavily modified version of the Impossible Creatures engine, allowing for improved graphics via anti-aliasing and anisotropic filtering on some graphics cards, although this can slow the game down somewhat. In general, about 100 men can be on screen and fighting before the game starts to slow down.


            THE ONLINE GAME

            Online you can play against other people in up to eight player battles, and are ranked for your efforts on number of battles fought and how many of them you were on the winning side. This is fairly good but can be fiddled by “comp stomps” – a team of humans ganging up on a usually weak computer to get their scores up.

            Fighting other humans on the other hand ranges from very hard to quite easy depending on their experience, but they tend to be very hard. Makes victory all the sweeter though!

            One problem is that you can (in theory) play DOW online with a fairly slow internet connection, which ends up with people often getting kicked due to lag or disconnection. Unfortunately this means you are often left without an ally when you desperately need one – it is never possible to overcome two opponents with one army, there’s simply too many of them.


            IN CONCLUSION

            If you are a fan of Warhammer 40k then I strongly recommend Dawn of War, as you will know and love the armies better – the voice acting really bringing them perfectly to life. If your army is not covered by the starting four then you can always upgrade with the other expansion packs (if you’re Tyranids then tough!), which bring new campaigns and units for the original armies too, as well as balancing the strength of forces more (in the original game Space Marine heavy bolters are all-powerful and easily accessible for example). At £7.50 on Amazon currently for DOW itself, or £25 for all three games, it’s a bargain too!

            If you have never played Warhammer then I can’t recommend the game as strongly – you might think it’s completely weird – but it’s such a breath of fresh air in a terribly stagnant RTS world at the moment that I really doubt anyone could dislike it.

            If you’re interested you can download the demo here (although it’s pretty hefty):

            www.download.com/Warhammer-40-000-Dawn-of-War-demo/3000-7488_4-10317160.html

            Or watch the fantastic (but bloody) opening video here (Space Marines vs. Orks):

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SFkFo5SBx-g


            MINIMUM SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS

            -1 GHz Pentium III or equivalent AMD Athlon XP processor,
            -256 MB RAM,
            -1.8 GB free hard drive space,
            -4x CD-ROM,
            -32 MB DirectX(R) 9.0b compatible AGP video card with Hardware Transform and Lighting,
            -DirectX 9.0b compatible 16-bit sound card.

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            • More +
              12.10.2007 20:44
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              Do not buy this game! Buy the Dawn Of War Anthology

              Dawn of War is a brilliant strategy game with good graphics interesting game play. It is based on the popular hobby of warhammer 40,000 made by Games Workshop.
              If you have no idea what Games Workshop is than i will give you the basics. In 40,000(Its set in the year 40,000 hence the name) you can be a variety of races of humans or aliens like Space Marines, Eldar, Tau (Which I was when I was young), Orks and Chaos Marines. There are two expansion packs called Winter Assault and Dark Crusade and they include more teams like the Imperial Guard and Necrons. Plus there is a special surprise at the end of both of the campaigns which i wont ruin for you!

              The graphics on the game are brilliant because you can see all the action on the ground when you zoom in really close you can see all the killing which is going on. The bad thing about the graphics is that the lip movements aren't in time with the speech. And from personal experience, the zoom up can damage your eyes. The game play is just simple and the weapons and infantry you can upgrade make them even better and each team has their own upgrades so there troops can get better.

              Each team will have there own buildings and they will all look different and when you start you can do a tutorial on your selected team so you know each team will work and what troops they have and they all don't have the same ammunition and the weapons are different they are not all machine guns and bazookas because if they was it would just be a huge white light across the screen when the battle scenes start. The campaign on the first expansion pack is the same as the campaign on the original game but in the dark crusade campaign you are not just on team you get to choose your team and after that it starts and in this campaign you start of with your own areas which is your home town and then you go out to conquer more places and some areas.

              Do not buy this game! I know, it is amazing but buy the Dawn Of War Anthology because you get this original game with the two expansion packs. But still worth the money.
              I just wanted to fit this in but couldn't find a suitable paragraph to put it in so here it goes! The Beginning sequence is absolutely amazing, brilliant graphics and very bloody and exiting action scenes!

              Thank you very much for reading and I hope you found this interesting and useful
              P.S. Do you like this layout for a review? I would be very grateful is you commented and told me if you prefer this layout from my other reviews.

              Kendall and May.

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            • More +
              09.05.2007 09:19

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              If you Like Warhammer you will like this game!

              Dawn of war is an excellent game. If you have ever played warhammer 40,000 the games workshop table top game you will love to see your army in glorious moving 3d! This game has the army's: Space marines, Chaos, Orks and eldar. And if this isn't enough for you there are two expansion packs at the moment. Winter assault which gives you imperial guard. and Dark crusade which gives you Tau and necrons.

              But in this game you take on missions against the orks and chaos which are exiting and you can unlock new people, vehicles and buildings along the way! And once you have completed all the missions you can battle against other real people across the globe. fighing to destroy their leader or their base or even every last one of them. This is an action packed game kind of like C+C generals.

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              27.02.2006 02:18
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              all out 40k mahem, with tactics thrown in for good measure. good fun online.

              Gone are the days of little green plastic men. This game is set in the future and throws you right in command of some space marines. Now space marines are not just little welps, they are elite super troops. If you have played 40k by games workshop, then i suggest you try this. The single player game is quite a game in itself, but online is where this game stands out. i was online playing for over three hours the other night!! One more game, its got the kind of appeal. You have everthing at your command, cant wait until they bring out a fantasy version.

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