Bodies rain from the skies in the Dawn of War 3 announcement trailer, providing the skull throne with plenty of skulls.
After teasing an announcement on their Youtube channel yesterday, Relic have now revealed their latest RTS, Dawn of War 3. Let me tell you, the trailer is something to behold. The narration and the slow build of the background music nail the atmosphere perfectly. I always get a little sad when people can’t appreciate cinematic trailers that don’t feature “gameplay.” The best reveals come with trailers of both variety. At least we’ve got a couple screenshots of Dawn of War 3, which admittedly make the game look like the work in progress that is undoubtedly is. So it’s no wonder Relic held off showing anything in motion. It seems they’re having to sacrifice graphic detail on the units in order to get the game running at a decent framerate with as much onscreen activity as there is.
The trailer features three of the game’s races – Space Marine, Orks, and Eldar. A PCGamer article released alongside the trailer today confirms that these are the three playable races in the game. If there are any more, Relic is keeping it to themselves. Also there’s no word if The Last Stand, Dawn of War 2’s survival game mod, is making a return.
A few things the article reveals that the trailer does not is that you’ll switch between the three races during the campaign, seeing the war from all three sides. As evidenced in the screenshots, armies in the game will on average be larger than those in Dawn of War 2. Think back to the size of the armies in the first game for comparison. It seems as though Relic is going back to the battles in Dawn of War 3 feeling like an actual war, and not a skirmish between a dozen or so units.
Bases are also returning. In Dawn of War 2, there was one building that basically performed all functions in the game, that shifted from Dawn of War 1’s more traditional “build bases” gameplay. That’s back for Dawn of War 3.
Elite units like are also making a return. Much like Dawn of War 2, these units will be more powerful and will level. The PCGamer article doesn’t mention whether you’ll find better and better gear for them as the game progresses. Guess we’ll have to wait and see there. You’ll collect more elite units as the campaign progresses, but you can pick three per mission, and multiplayer will feature a picking/banning phase much like MOBAs.
The cover system is also being reworked to function better with the increase in the amount of units on screen at once in Dawn of War 3.
There’s no word on release date, but 2016 is being a bit too optimistic, I’d wager. It seemed as though Relic was on the verge of revealing Dawn of War 3 just before the THQ went belly up. The game was likely sidetracked at that point, and it was probably only within the last few months that Sega gave Relic the go ahead to go full steam on it. As such, I’m better we won’t be seeing Dawn of War 3 until sometime in 2017.