Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II – Retribution

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Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II – Retribution
Dawn of war ii retribution 0boxart 160w.jpg
Developer(s) Relic Entertainment
Publisher(s) THQ (former)
Sega (current)
Designer(s) Daniel Kading
Engine Essence Engine 2.0
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows, Cloud (OnLive)
Release date(s)
Genre(s) Tactical role-playing game, Real-time tactics (Campaign, The Last Stand), Real-time strategy (Skirmish)
Mode(s) Single-player, Cooperative, Multiplayer

Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II – Retribution is the stand-alone second expansion to Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II, part of the Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War series of real-time strategy computer games. Set in Games Workshop's Warhammer 40,000 fictional universe, the single player campaign is playable with multiple races.

Imperial Guard is introduced as a new race, and all races including the races from the original game and the first expansion (the Eldar, the Space Marines, Chaos, the Orks and the Tyranids) are now playable in single-player.[2]

Development[edit]

On September 15, 2010 Relic Entertainment announced that Retribution would be dropping the Games for Windows - LIVE multiplayer platform in favor of using Steamworks as its primary and only platform.,[3] and the new multiplayer platform does not communicate with the old LIVE platform. This makes the game entirely stand-alone with all the races included (unlike Chaos Rising, which required the original Dawn of War II to use the original four races in multiplayer). Plot-wise, two playable characters (Cyrus and Tarkus) have been carried over from the original campaigns. A new multiplayer matchmaking service was developed for Retribution. The addition of Steamworks also allows inviting Steam friends directly to multiplayer matches as well as free-to-play multiplayer weekends and a much faster patching process.

There were speculations that the new playable race would be Imperial Guard and/or the Inquisition, due to the Inquisition's triple-lined "I" used in the word "Retribution" in the game trailer;[4] in addition, the expansion's wishlist icon in the Steam system features a female Witch Hunter Inquisitor. On December 21, 2010, the German PC gaming magazine Gamestar revealed the new race would be the Imperial Guard.

A multiplayer beta of the game was launched on Steam on February 1, 2011 and ended on February 25.

Campaign[edit]

Dawn of War II: Retribution offers a campaign for every race, including the Imperial Guard. The campaign takes place across Sub-sector Aurelia, which appeared in the previous two games. The worlds include the jungle world Typhon Primaris, the desert world Calderis, and the hive world Meridian from Dawn of War II; the arctic world Aurelia and the derelict ship Judgment of Carrion from Chaos Rising; and the dead world of Cyrene, mentioned in the original Dawn of War as having been subjected to Exterminatus (complete sterilization of all life on a planet corrupted by Chaos or alien influences) by Blood Ravens Captain Gabriel Angelos.

Setting[edit]

Dawn of War II: Retribution takes place ten years after events of Chaos Rising. Sub-sector Aurelia is now suffering from conflict between Ork pirates called the Freebootaz led by Kaptin Bluddflagg to pillage the sub-sector,[5] the arrival of the Eldar of the Craftworld Alaitoc led by Autarch Kayleth to seek about a prophecy and recovering an ancient artifact,[6] a Tyranid Hive Lord restoring the remnants of the Hive Fleet Leviathan and to the link of the Hive Mind,[7] the Blood Ravens defending the sub-sector led by Captain Apollo Diomedes to hunt down Chaos as well as investigating their Chapter Master, Azariah Kyras, for being corrupted by Chaos,[8] the return of Chaos Space Marines of the Black Legion led by Eliphas the Inheritor to fulfill his promise to Abaddon the Despoiler to annihilate the Blood Ravens,[9] and the newly arriving Imperial Guard of the 8th Cadian Regiment led by Lord General Castor, performing an Exterminatus under Inquisitor Adrastia to investigate for corruption within Sub-sector Aurelia as well as the Blood Ravens' Chapter Master Azariah Kyras. These events may have been caused by Gabriel Angelos' actions (from the original Dawn of War game) when he destroyed the Maledictum, a Chaos stone containing the bound essence of a daemon of Khorne, with the hammer "God-Splitter".[10]

Plot[edit]

The player's character arrives on Typhon Primaris engaging and battling an opposing faction and defeating their leader. (Space Marines vs. Chaos, Eldar vs. Orks, and Imperial Guard vs. Tyranids). It is learned that the Imperial Inquisition has deemed the sector beyond redemption, and will be arriving soon to perform Exterminatus on all the inhabitable worlds in the area. Later, the faction leader is given the objective to eliminate Azariah Kyras who intends to use the impending Exterminatus as a sacrifice to Khorne and ascend to daemonhood. The motivation varies depending on the player's faction, for example the Space Marines, Imperial Guard and Eldar wish to oppose Chaos, their ancient evil enemy; the warlike Orks simply want a good fight and to thump the strongest foes they can find; the Tyranid splinter wishes to overrun the sector and summon a new hive fleet to consume all the biomass; the Chaos faction are Kyras' rivals and wish to surpass him. Regardless, it is deemed by the player faction that Kyras must die. The player quickly attempts to secure a means of transport off Typhon, escaping a local cult along the way.

Arriving on Calderis, the player character fights against Kyras' Chaos-corrupted Blood Ravens Space Marines, operating under orders to purge the planet. After destroying a Warp portal on Aurelia, the faction learns of an attack on Meridian ordered by Kyras and arrives there killing the traitor guardsmen and uncovering a transmission from Kyras revealing his location on Typhon.

The player character returns to Typhon Primaris to confront Kyras himself, only to be ambushed by Eldar from Craftworld Biel-Tan. Wary of a ritual they are undergoing, the player's character kills the Eldar there. Following this, Kyras reveals that the Eldar ritual was preventing the Imperial Inquisition fleet from arriving at the sub-sector. The Inquisition fleet arrives, beginning Exterminatus on Typhon Primaris. The player escapes Typhon before the Exterminatus finishes. A cyclonic torpedo reduces Typhon to ash.

Finding themselves on the space hulk (a huge conglomeration of drifting space-borne detritus consisting of many wrecked ships) known as the Judgment of Carrion, the player's characters recover, and find their determination to stop Kyras. It is deduced that he is hiding on Cyrene, as the planet has already undergone Exterminatus decades ago, and therefore the Inquisition will not travel there to perform Exterminatus again. On Cyrene, the player characters launch an attack against a joint alliance of Chaos Space Marines, corrupt Imperial Guardsmen and traitor Blood Ravens by using their most powerful unit against them. Kyras begins to ascend into daemonhood. Gabriel and his 3rd Company launch an attack on Kyras' forces while Gabriel's own command unit confronts the daemon prince himself; however they are defeated by Kyras. The player's faction then launches their own attack, ultimately successfully killing Kyras.

Ending[edit]

After Kyras' death, the ending of the game will depend on which race the players character chose:

  • Chaos - Eliphas allows the Exterminatus to continue, thus sacrificing the sector to Khorne. He is thus granted daemonhood by the Blood God, usurping Kyras' place.
  • Eldar - Ronahn recovers the soulstone containing the spirit of his sister, the Farseer Taldeer, and decides to return to Craftworld Ulthwé with her.
  • Imperial Guard - Inquisitor Adrastia returns to the Inquisition to suspend the Exterminatus on sub-sector Aurelia, by presenting Kyras' psychic hood as proof that the threat has ended, while Lord General Castor and Sergeant Major Merrick commend each other for their exemplary actions rather backhandedly.
  • Orks - Inquisitor Adrastia attempts to renege the deal between her and Kaptin Bluddflagg with assassination. Unfortunately, Kaptin Bluddflagg catches her off guard and takes her hat, which he wanted in their deal. Following that, he claims the Judgment of Carrion as his new Krooza, and uses it to leave the subsector.
  • Space Marines - Captain Diomedes contacts Inquisitor Adrastia to halt the Exterminatus. The Chapter is then purged of any remaining chaos taint and Gabriel Angelos, after being revived from the brink of death and rebuilt with bionics, is appointed as the new Chapter Master. This appears to be the canonical ending, as corroborated by other Warhammer 40,000 materials: a squad of Blood Ravens appears in Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine, in which their victory over the conflict in Aurelia is mentioned; meanwhile, the exact course of events of the successful Blood Ravens campaign in Retribution is likewise mentioned in some publications (such as Fantasy Flight Games' "Deathwatch: Honour the Chapter" supplement).
  • Tyranids - The Hive Tyrant's psychic strength summons a Hive Fleet, that launches a surprise attack and consumes the entire sub-sector, resulting in a 94% casualty rate for the Imperial Guard forces and the complete annihilation of the Blood Ravens, who refused to retreat.

Multiplayer[edit]

The Last Stand[edit]

The Imperial Lord General will be added to the current selection of The Last Stand heroes as well as new environment and new waves of enemies. It can also update all the previous heroes from Dawn of War II and Chaos Rising by importing the Games for Windows account to the Steam Account.

The Last Standalone is a stand-alone version of the Retribution version of The Last Stand. The Last Standalone was released on April 20, 2011 as a separate Steam purchase for $9.99 (€6.99). Owners of The Last Standalone receive a discount on the full version of -Dawn of War II: Retribution.[11]

New units and/or upgrades[edit]

Multiplayer will introduce base building to a small degree, as well as every race getting a Global Ability Advance Unit. Retribution is a stand-alone title and does not require ownership of earlier games in the series to use any of the factions in multiplayer.[12]

Release[edit]

Specific race packs were released for each of the six races within the campaign, containing special items for that race in the campaign of Retribution, such as armour, weapons and accessories. The Ork race pack is a Steam exclusive[2] and Tyranid pack a THQ online store exclusive,[13] although all were made available as DLC after release, and all come in the Dawn of War II: Retribution Collector's Edition retail box.[14]

Wargear packs were also released for The Last Stand multiplayer mode. Each pack added new wargear to a specific hero class.[15]

There were also two DLC packs released adding new sub-races to use in multiplayer game with unique models and color schemes for units: Dark Angels Space Marine chapter[16] and Eldar Craftworld Ulthwe.[17] Similar DLC pack adding the Ultramarines Space Marine chapter was released on August 16, 2011.[18][19]

The Tau Crisis Suit Commander is another hero for Last Stand mode available by download.

Sequel[edit]

Relic had revealed that work had begun on a sequel, but with THQ having shut down, it is unknown if development has continued. As SEGA has not arranged a licensing agreement with Games Workshop (owner of the Warhammer 40,000 IP), unless this situation changes in future, it is likely that development has halted on any further Dawn of War titles. However a new web page featuring Dawn of War 3 was opened up by Relic in September 2015.[20] In October 2015, PC Games News wrote that they expected Dawn Of War III to be released in 2016.[21] According to latest updates, Dawn of War III is now touted for launch in 2017 and was displayed at E3 2016.[22]

Reception[edit]

Reception
Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings 81.65%[23]
Metacritic 82%[24]

The game received generally positive reviews upon release. It received an aggregated score of 81.65% on GameRankings based on 36 reviews and 82/100 on Metacritic based on 52 reviews.[23][24]

References[edit]

External links[edit]