Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War - Winter Assault
Game review on PC
Eamon Ward / Wed 25th Jan 2017
136 views / 1 bite
OVERVIEW Winter Assault is the first expansion to the stellar Dawn of War and, while small, it brings a new race and enough changes to change the face of war forever. The Imperial Guard have arrived, and what they lack in manpower, they make up with a variety of devastating war machines.
Winter Assault introduces two campaigns, Order and Disorder. The Order campaign follows General Sturnn and the Cadian 412th as they land upon the planet of Lorn V, intent on securing a fallen Titan. The Eldar aid them from the shadows, fearing that they may release a sleeping evil that has lain beneath the planet's surface for millennia.
The Disorder campaign features Warboss Gorgutz, an Ork who has since become a recurring character in the series, as he gathers the various Ork groups under one banner for the largest fight they've ever seen. Watching from the shadows are, unsurprisingly, the malicious forces of Chaos, intending to reach the Titan before the Imperials, regardless of what stands in their way.
Once again the campaign is enjoyable in a campy sci-fi way as the over the top characters fight their way across the planet. The leaders of reach race, with the exception of the Eldar, are all enjoyable with each having memorable lines and lasting impact even if it is a little short.
The biggest change between the base game and its expansion is the introduction of the Imperial Guard. With relatively weak standard infantry that are surprisingly effective en masse and a selection of specialised units, the guard don't fare too well on a man-to-man basis with every other race outclassing them in at least one way. Where they shine however, is with their vehicles. From the two-legged Sentinels to the mighty Leman Russ tank and the long ranged Basilisk. The guard have a focus on moving quickly and striking fast, but are also handy in defence, something sorely lacking in the base game.
Outside of the Imperial Guard, the other changes are minor adjustments to unit weapons and counters but overall there's not a whole lot of difference. Each however race gets a new unit such as the Space Marine's chaplain, a zealous warrior who can more than hold his own, to the Khorne Berserkers of Chaos, axe wielding mad men who are willing to spill blood for their dark gods. These new units fill in a number of empty spaces and make the game even better.
GRAPHICS Same engine, same visuals, all good. Red blood splashed across white snow as heavy artillery tears apart the earth, it brings a new visual style that works incredibly well.
AUDIO The excellent audio from Dawn of War carries over into Winter Assault, with the addition of new characters and units bringing more top notch effects, voice acting and music. The expansion excels in every way the original did with the addition of the glorious themes of the Imperial Guard, a more classic military style that totally fits.
VERDICT Winter Assault brings my personal favourite army to Dawn of War and does it so well that it's hard not to recommend. With a low price and a solid campaign, it's definitely worth it.