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Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II

Platform(s): PC
Genre: Strategy
Publisher: THQ
Developer: Relic
Release Date: Feb. 19, 2009

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'Dawn of War II' - v1.3 Patch to Add New Armor, New Weapons, AI Improvements

by Rainier on May 8, 2009 @ 11:53 a.m. PDT

Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II is set in the grim, war-ravaged world of Games Workshop's Warhammer 40k universe -- a dark, futuristic, science-fiction setting where armies of technologically advanced warriors, fighting machines and hordes of implacable aliens wage constant war.
Dawn of War II v1.3.0 patch is scheduled for early May and will include :
  • A Two-on-Two game mode, with two new four player maps.
  • Two-on-Two is a ranked game mode with leaderboard support.
  • An improved, more challenging Skirmish AI.
  • Push to talk voice chat and Company of Heroes style sub-selection options.
  • New squad decorators and significant UI improvements.
  • A performance test to help measure Dawn of War II performance.

Add 20 new pieces of wargear to the list of features Relic's added to Dawn of War II since release. The v1.3.0 patch will next give you awesome new weapons, armor, and abilities, such as new scout armour where enemy melee attacks cause the squad to sprint, The Roar of Revelation: a shotgun that grants Cyrus knockbacks and stuns from stealth, and Ardent Wrath: a 52 damage-per-second power sword whose charge attack stuns its enemies.

You could also mow down approaching termagaunts with the new Gladius of Destiny, a damage-resistance granting chainsword, or rip a squad of Ork Stickboyz to shreds with the unlocked Chorus of Resolve, a Will Combat Discipline improving Dreadnaught assault cannon.

A lot of players enjoy playing offline games against a computer opponent and Relic is working hard to improve that area of the game. While the AI was working okay, it didn’t understand the nuances of the game and frankly, left a lot of room for improvement. The first few things that was focused on were the basics such as economy, capture logic and unit selection.

The AI can now balance its resources much better. Previous to 1.3 it would opt to build power as soon as possible, buy lots of wargear for its hero, and leave little remaining for a standing army. Now the AI will balance its power more carefully, evaluate how important a new unit actually is, review how much its hero needs wargear, and also evaluate whether or not it needs to resurrect a dead hero.

The AI also selects from its potential units in a more intelligent way, building counters to what the player is producing. This drastically changes the current experience where a lot of players are seeing massing of a particular tier 1 and tier 2 units.

Capture logic is much improved now as well. Before the AI would allow you to shoot it to pieces while it tried to capture a point. Ideally its priority should be to keep its units alive over capturing (with some exceptions of course) so the AI now does this. If it is engaged while capturing it should stand and fight if it thinks it can win, or fall back to safer ground if it believes it cannot. Some bonus logic has been added to this as well, so if the AI thinks it can finish the cap and take few casualties it should do so.

On top of these fundamental changes some some very important bug fixes were made. The most noticeable one will be the targeting of abilities. The computer now knows how to stomp and kill with abilities like jump, grenades, AOE attacks, and even Orbital Bombardment and Eldritch Storm.

This is just the beginning of a long term plan to improve the skirmish AI.

Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II is set in the grim, war-ravaged world of Games Workshop's Warhammer 40,000 universe – a dark, futuristic, science-fiction setting where armies of technologically advanced warriors, fighting machines and hordes of implacable aliens wage constant war. Developed by critically acclaimed RTS developer Relic Entertainment, Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II ushers in a new chapter in the acclaimed RTS series, as ancient races – including the dauntless Space Marines and savage Orks - clash across ruined worlds on a mission to claim the galaxy and preserve their own existence. Powered by the re-vamped Essence Engine 2.0, the next evolution of Relic's proprietary game engine made famous in the award winning Company of Heroes, Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II will deliver fast-paced RTS action with ferocious melee and ranged combat in fully destructible environments. Immersing players in an in-depth non-linear single-player campaign and a fully-co-operative multiplayer mode, Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II is set to deliver the most visually-stunning Warhammer 40,000 setting ever created.

Each Tyranid is a living weapon, perfectly adapted to its designated function, but each creature is no more than a single cell in a galactic entity governed by a monstrous Hive Mind. As the Tyranid hive fleets drift through space they strip all life from the worlds in their path, leaving nothing but scoured rock in their wake…

Dawn of War II multiplayer will feature four playable races, twelve unique multiplayer heroes, five multiplayer maps, 240 online ranks to achieve, 110 visual armor upgrades, and 90 pieces of hero wargear. Throughout the multiplayer modes, any race combinations can be on the same team.

Game modes:

  • Automatch: All games are victory point win conditions; you can win by victory points or by destroying the enemy base.
    • Head to head
    • 3 vs. 3 team games
  • Custom Games: Custom games can be any size up to 3v3 and can be played on Live or on LAN. Custom games can be played with either victory point or annihilate only win conditions.

…In the war zones of Warhammer 40,000, the Tyranids are instinctive masters of swarm-tactics and close combat. Frequently appearing by the thousands across untold numbers of world, they always outnumber their opponents, a fact that often guarantees their victory. Each Tyranid is equipped with diamond-hard rending claws, razor-sharp teeth, and a variety of other bio-weapons suited to both close quarters fighting and ranged attacks. What’s even more fearsome are the monstrous creatures striding through a Tyranid swarm like Carnifexes and Hive Tyrants, true behemoths who tower over even the largest of tanks and mechanised units. In total, the Tyranids are a cold and brutal opponent to face. Even the best warriors in the galaxy can only hope to stall the Tyranids’ advance.

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