Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II es un videojuego de estrategia y rol en tiempo real desarrollado por Relic Entertainment y publicado por THQ para Microsoft Windows, basado en el universo de Warhammer 40,000. Es la secuela de la serie de videojuegos Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War. Dawn of War II salió a la venta en Norteamérica el 19 de Febrero de 2009, y en Europa el 20 del mismo mes.
El modo de juego de Dawn of War II es marcadamente distinto del de Dawn of War y sus expansiones. Jonny Ebbert, el principal diseñador del juego, describe la sensación del juego diciendo que "toma todo lo genial del original y lo combina con lo mejor que Company of Heroes tenía que ofrecer". Hay un enfoque mucho más importante sobre la cobertura, que da bonus defensivos más sustanciales. De un modo similar, hay un nuevo énfasis en los métodos para enfrentarse a las unidades a cubierto. Algunas armas, como las granadas y otros explosivos, pueden destruir la cobertura, mientras que otras, como los Lanzallamas, ignoran completamente los bonus por cobertura. Otras diferencias entre Dawn of War II y sus predecesores son una IA mejorada (las escuadras que reciben disparos buscan cobertura, por ejemplo), vehículos de un tamaño más realista, y un motor físico mejorado.
Al ser un juego de Games for Windows Live, utiliza el sistema de Logros de Xbox LIVE, y es el primer juego de ordenador de amplia difusión que lo hace. Debido a esto, el jugador debe ser capaz de conectarse a los servidores de Windows Live para poder acceder al modo multijugador. El juego también exige autentificación a través de Steam.
Dawn of War II presenta una campaña interplanetaria no lineal, que se juega con los Marines Espaciales. La campaña puede jugarse tanto como un único jugador como cooperativamente con otro jugador a través de una conexión online.
La campaña del juego se aparta de aquellas de sus predecesores en varios rasgos clave. Una de las diferencias más notables es que no hay elementos de construcción de bases. En vez de eso, el jugador elige las unidades que usará antes de empezar la misión, no puede crear nuevas unidades una vez esta ha empezado, y solo posee unas limitadas opciones de refuerzo.
Una gran parte de la campaña depende de elegir en qué batallas e incluso en qué planetas luchar, y esas decisiones tienen consecuencias. Puede haber múltiples llamadas de socorro que atender, por ejemplo, cada una disponible solo por un tiempo limitado. Una vez elegida una misión, el jugador todavía puede tener que elegir entre varios objetivos, debiendo decidir entre salvar a civiles u obtener una poderosa pieza de armamento, por ejemplo.
Una vez seleccionada una zona de guerra y una misión, el jugador elige solo cuatro escuadras para la inminente batalla. Cada escuadra es única en su especialidad de combate, su personalidad, e incluso en la voz de su Sargento. Hay un enfoque fuertemente narrativo en los Sargentos de estas escuadras, que pueden aumentar su experiencia y habilidades a medida que avanza la campaña, y no pueden morir de un modo definitivo. En lugar de morir en una misión, los líderes de escuadra son "dejados inconscientes" y pueden ser revividos bien por una unidad amiga cercana o al completar la misión.
La campaña incluye muchos elementos tradicionalmente asociados a los juegos de rol. Los líderes de escuadra y los comandantes pueden ser equipados con el armamento tomado de los campos de batalla y los enemigos muertos u obtenido por completar objetivos durante las misiones. A lo largo de la campaña, a medida que un Marine Espacial mata enemigos y logra objetivos, gana experiencia, "sube de nivel", aprende nuevas habilidades, y obtiene bonus.
Escuadras y líderes
- Force Commander: The player-named Force Commander leads the strike force throughout the game and is the one "squad" that always deploys. The youngest Force Commander in the history of the Blood Ravens, he earned a reputation for his ability to command in situations that would have broken other leaders. The Force Commander is never heard speaking outside of battle, where he can be heard shouting the generic battle cry "For the Emperor!" when using the "Rally!" ability, making him an almost silent protagonist. He can use almost any piece of equipment, save for some squad-specific items and, until he unlocks the relevant skill in the "Ranged" tree, heavy ranged weapons.
- Tarkus: A veteran of countless battles, Tarkus leads a squad of 3 Tactical Marines, who specialize in drawing enemy fire with his "Taunt" ability, while reducing ranged damage and ignoring suppression with his "Tactical Advance" ability. They are armed with the ubiquotous bolters, but Tarkus can also wield plasma guns and flamers and can turn frag grenades into an energy-using ability rather than one replenished by supply drops. With investment in "Melee" tree, Tarkus and the squad can switch to chainswords and bolt pistols, and Tarkus can wield power swords and plasma pistols, but that reduces their ranged capabilities; investment into the "Fortitude" tree upgrades the squadmates to Veterans, granting two of them plasma weapons. Other than the Force Commander, Tarkus is the only member of the strike force who is able to equip Terminator armor by default, whereas Avitus and Thaddeus have to unlock by investing enough points in the right skills. As Terminators, Tarkus and his men can't take cover, enter buildings, use hand-thrown ordnance or normal weaponry, but are well-protected, crush through most obstacles, and are armed with storm bolters (twin-linked bolters) and tank-crushing power fists; Trakus may also equip a heavy flamer and a shoulder-mounted missile battery. His professional, confident, seen-it-all demeanor makes him a model Space Marine Sergeant.
- Avitus: Avitus leads a squad of 2 Devastators, heavy weapon specialists, whose belt-fed heavy bolters can suppress and slow enemies caught in their line of fire; Avitus can also use his "Focus Fire" ability to additionally increase his attack damage, and can trade his heavy bolter for an anti-vehicular missile launcher or a plasma cannon. The squad's vulnerability is their need to spend a few seconds setting up their weapons and their complete ineffectiveness in melee. Avitus can gain the ability to wear Terminator armor by investing enough points in the "Fortitude" tree; as a Terminator he wields an assault cannon (Gatling gun) but his teammates are limited to storm bolters. He is also the most ruthless of the characters, inspiring fear even in his fellow Space Marines, and gleefully wipes out the Emperor's enemies; his hatred even extends to non-Space Marine Imperial forces, especially the Imperial Guard, who killed several of his brothers-in-arms during the events of Dark Crusade. However, this hides a deeper conflict: Avitus, after being ordered to fight against loyal Guardsmen who were just following their orders, has lost faith in his own Chapter, and is disgusted by its endless secrets, one of which caused the Blood Ravens to fight fellow Imperials on Kronus.
- Thaddeus: Thaddeus leads a squad of 2 Assault Marines who specialize in close range combat and use jump packs for rapid assault. Thaddeus can train to use almost all melee weapons, but he's limited to pistols unless he receives additional "Ranged" training; even then, equipping a bolter, flamer or plasma gun forces the squad to abandon their melee weaponry. He can learn to wear Terminator armor by investing points in the "Melee" skill tree; while wearing it, he can use its teleporter in lieu of the jump pack, and carries a thunderhammer and a stormshield, but lacks mobility and ranged weaponry. A former ganger on Meridian, Thaddeus was the first recruit from that planet in decades, and, although over 80 years old, is considered young and inexperienced. The process of Space Marine maturation, from a brash fighter into a cold-blooded warrior, is discussed after one of the missions.
- Cyrus: Cyrus leads a squad of 2 Scouts who specialize in stealth and infiltration, using their "Infiltrate" ability to turn invisible and scout ahead. While Space Marine Scouts are fresh recruits, Cyrus himself is very much a veteran, and a Scout by choice - he is a teacher and a master of special operations the Scouts are well-accustomed to. Scouts are the only squad that uses Carapace Armor rather than the iconic Power Armor, trading protection for stealth and mobility. Investment in the "Will" tree greatly improves "Infiltrate", allowing Cyrus to remain camouflaged indefinitely while stationary and use abilities without compromising himself. While Scouts are equipped with the ubiqoutus bolters by default, and Cyrus can be trained to use flamers, their most effective weapons are proprietary to the squad - combat shotguns and sniper rifles. Cyrus also has a special ability for each weapon type he can wield. Worse than that, the Scouts have more Accessory slots than other squads, and can fill them up with a variety of very destructive explosives. His unortodox tactics were heavily opposed by the more conservative Blood Ravens like Captain Indrick Boreale, but also attracted the attention of the Deathwatch, the Inquisition's elite alienhunter corps; as a result, Cyrus is all too familiar with the Tyranids.
- Davian Thule: After being critically injured by a Tyranid warrior in the Blood Ravens' first encounter with the aliens on Calderis, Davian Thule is placed in stasis, and becomes a Dreadnought - a cybernetic combat walker - after the Strike Force secures a sample of the Tyranids's biotoxin, and joins them. Although powerful, Thule is more vulnerable to anti-vehicle weapons and explosives, and cannot heal unless another squad uses the "Repair Rites" item, or he is nearby a "field asset", which heals and reinforces nearby squads. Thule can overcome this weakness by learning the "Ancient Defender" ability, which allows him to heal to full, by investing skill points in the "Fortitude" tree. His default armament - a pair of massive arms with a flamer fixed under one of them - is geared for melee, but by replacing one of the arms and the flamer with an assault cannon and investing into the "Ranged" tree Thule can be turned into an equally devastating ranged walker.
The game opens with the player and Sergeant Tarkus deep-striking onto the planet Calderis to aid Captain Davian Thule and his initiates. As they drive away the Orks they are confronted by Mek Badzappa and his wartrukk. Although the Mek escapes, the Space Marines collapse the mine through which they are coming and achieve victory. After this they strike from the cruiser Armageddon into a hamlet where Scout Sergeant Cyrus is waiting for them. They manage to fight their way to the defender of the hamlet, Sergeant Avitus, rescue him and save the hamlet from Orks.
After this they receive word that Orks have attacked two more key locations and assume someone is leading them. The first attack is led by a Stormboyz Nob named Skykilla and the second by Warboss Gutrencha. After this the Marines obtain information from Skykilla and Gutrencha and find that both have visited Felhammer Mine recently. They also learn that Mek Badzappa is there as well. However Cyrus remains onboard the Armageddon to provide technical support. When they enter the mine they see a Warp Spider Exarch and his retinue vanish, and the Space Marines are rescued from Ork gunners by Sergeant Thaddeus. They also find Badzappa and his platoon under attack by an Eldar Warlock and a company of Guardians. Although they kill the Warlock, the Mek escapes once again. As the Warlock dies he speaks of a greater foe threatening them all, but the heroes remain unconcerned.
They travel to planet Typhon to stop Eldar activity. A Warp Spider Exarch is stirring up the Orks into revolt and must be eliminated. He mentions nothing of the so-called "greater foe" but Thule asks them to return to Calderis as Mek Badzappa is launching an attack against the capital, and citizens are reporting plants mutating and small purple creatures killing livestock. The Space Marines arrive and finally kill the Mek, but they are soon attacked by the Tyranids. Thule is mortally wounded by a Tyranid Warrior and Techmarine Martellus leads them back to safety after they destroy the Tyranid attack force.
The Space Marines return to Typhon, leaving Apothecary Gordian in charge of Thule. They kill the Eldar ranger Nemerian, who has been stirring up trouble, and return to Calderis to kill the Tyranid Warrior that mortally wounded Captain Thule.
After this they are voxed by Captain Gabriel Angelos (the protagonist of the first game) who tells them that he is bringing his company to aid them in their battle to stop the Tyranids, and gives them the three primary objectives of the game. To gain victory they must: gather a pure sample of Tyranid bio-toxin, so that poison can be created (and an antidote to possibly save Captain Thule's life); secure a long-lost Astronomic Array on Typhon, which can find a weakness in the Tyranid Hive Fleet; and gain control of the Angel Forge on the planet of Meridian to mass-produce the poisoned weaponry to arm Thule's ships. These can be completed in any order desired. Securing the Astronomic Array will grant the player orbital bombardment and deep-strike, defending Angel Forge will allow Sergeant Tarkus to use Terminator Armour, and gathering the bio-toxin will provide a Dreadnought, who is the revived Captain Davian Thule. Meridian is the target of constant Eldar attacks and it is slowly revealed that Idranel of Ulthwe has been planning to lure the entire Tyranid fleet to Meridian and then destroy it, thus stopping the Tyranid threat and protecting their Craftworld but destroying a planet with population in excess of 32 billion Imperial citizens.
Upon completion of all three objectives, the Tyranid poison is ready for delivery. However, Captain Angelos's ship Litany of Fury and the rest of his fleet are psychically assaulted by the Hive Mind and are in grave danger of becoming lost in the Warp. This effectively takes the reinforcements out of the picture - but the Hive Mind is weakened from the exertion and goes to planet Typhon to feed. The player's entire strike team deploys on the planet and administers the poison to the Hive Mind through its feeder tendrils. In the space battle above, the Armageddon is destroyed and Gordian is killed.
As the poison takes effect, all appears lost as the strike team has no means of retreat and massive waves of Tyranids are preparing to attack. Suddenly, Captain Gabriel Angelos and the entire 4th Company drop in. Angelos leads the player and their forces to attack the Hive Tyrant Alpha, delivering the coup de grâce to the Hive Fleet. As the Tyranids are defeated Gabriel reflects on how the Emperor created the Space Marines to battle the untold horrors of the galaxy, warriors who would fight to the death to defend mankind, and how you and your strike force are those warriors.
Dawn of War II includes a skirmish game as well, playable either as single-player or multiplayer, and uses the Games for Windows - Live online gaming service for multiplayer games and matchmaking.
Prior to a match, a player chooses a faction and one of the chosen faction's three commanders. The various commanders are used to complement different strategies. For example, a player who chooses the Space Marine army can choose among the offense-oriented Force Commander, the support-oriented Apothecary, and the defense-oriented Techmarine.
Unlike most contemporary real-time strategy games, including Dawn of War, most of the unit and research production in Dawn of War II is done from an army's headquarters building, and unit upgrades are performed on the field of battle itself. The focus in the game is on frontline combat and unit-based tactics rather than the more traditional base-building style popularized in titles like Command & Conquer and the Age of Empires series.
There are only two game modes in the skirmish game thus far. There is the standard Victory Point Control mode where the key to winning is controlling the critical victory points on the map until your opponent's victory points run down to zero, and in unranked custom matches there is also the annihilation mode where players attempt to completely destroy their opponents' units and structures. In both modes, players fight to control requisition and power nodes which supply factions with required resources. In online ranked play, players compete in 1v1, 2v2 and 3v3 matches. Annihilation games are not supported for ranked play.
La Última Defensa
On October 14, 2009 Relic released a new game mode (as part of their 1.8.0 patch) for Dawn of War II, called The Last Stand. Players take control of either a Space Marine Captain, an Eldar Farseer or an Ork Mekboy, and co-operate with two other players in order to take on waves of AI controlled units. With the release of Chaos Rising, the Tyranid Hive Tyrant and Chaos Space Marine Sorcerer were also made playable. As the players play, they gain experience points which unlocks 'wargear' for their character. This was further improved with the release of Retribution which added an Imperial Guard Captain to the fray. A new DLC emerged giving players a chance to use the Shas'O Tau commander unit.
On January 19, 2009, Relic announced that Dawn of War II had gone gold. A beta was started afterwards with an announcement that the beta focused mainly on optimizing multiplayer balance which was to be optimized in a day zero patch.
Dawn of War II was released to the public for beta testing on January 21, 2009, and it was scheduled to run until the game's release date of February 19, 2009. Only purchasers of the Soulstorm expansion pack to Dawn of War were allowed to take part in the first phase of the beta. On January 27, the beta became available to the general public.
The beta was downloadable via Valve's Steam online distribution service.
Motor de juego
Dawn of War II uses an updated version of the Essence Engine, Essence Engine 2.0. Essence Engine 1.0 was used to power Relic's World War II real-time strategy game Company of Heroes and its two expansion packs Company of Heroes: Opposing Fronts and Company of Heroes: Tales of Valor.
Dawn of War II has received a mostly positive reception, scoring an average of 85% on Metacritic.com. Most reviewers have praised it for its fast-paced tactical gameplay and impressive graphics, while criticizing its small number of multiplayer maps, and lack of variety in single-player campaign missions.
Gamespy praised its removal of base building and its “seemingly unlikely hybrid” of RTS and RPG genres. However it did criticise the single player campaign that having the missions occurring on the same maps “make[s] the missions feel pretty same-y by the end of the campaign.” Criticism was also aimed at the use of the Tyranids in the game as “actually fighting them [...] feels a bit underwhelming.” but praised the multiplayer and the introduction of logistics, calling it a “stroke of genius.”
1up.com also praised the “ingenious addition” of levelled wargear, the tactical choices that squad selection allowed and the replayability that this allowed, but also criticised the continual use of the same maps in single player.
- Artículo principal: Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II - Chaos Rising.
The first expansion entitled Chaos Rising was announced on September 18, 2009 in a gaming magazine podcast.
Prior to the announcement on PC Gamer, several moderators for various fan sites were sent Warhammer 40,000 Chaos Terminator Lord Miniatures. The boxes the miniatures came in had the Blood Raven chapter logo with the number MMX on them. The expansion was released on the 12th of March.
- Artículo principal: Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II - Retribution.
The second stand alone expansion was announced, on August 17, 2010, scheduled for release on the 4th of March 2011. During this period of time it will be shown first to the press at Gamescom. Retribution will, in addition, be leaving Games for Windows Live, announced on 15 September. Retribution will instead use Valve's Steamworks platform for DRM, achievements, social features and matchmaking. It will also feature a new race; the Imperial Guard.
Extraído y traducido de Wikipedia Inglesa.