Review by Loyed2k

"RTS for the true Strategy player"

Warhammer 40,000, a title thats been out for a long time now. The newest edition to the PC gaming line, the subject of this review, Dawn of war, is certain to blow you away. Like strategy games like WC3 and Starcraft? maybe some Rise of Nations or Age of Empires? Well this game tops them all by a long shot, and I'm going to explain why...

Graphics- 10/10

For a strategy game, Dawn of War retains excellent graphics. The models are well constructed, animate smoothly, and have very few quirks. Not only are there very different graphics, unlike some games (rise of nations) where all the units look extreamly similar with small changes, but every unit has a couple of fatalities they play when they kill an enemy unit. The fatalities are different and unique for each unit, are constructed well and fit smoothly against all models. Some units even have special fatalities vs. other units (like the Force commander smashing the head of the bloodthirster, as seen in the trailer). Building animations are also done well, with a smooth flowing animation, instead of a repeating one (such as WC3, where a looped animation plays and changes slightly as the building becomes more complete). The most amazing part of the graphics is the full rotating 3-d camera with zoom, giving you complete control over what you want to see. All in all, graphics are very nice, attractive, and suit the game perfectly.

Controls- 8/10

The controls are good, but defenitely not a good as they could have been. Buttons are spread out and sometimes hard to hit quickly. The ALT key that moves the camera can be very inconvenient at times, and sometimes its too much trouble to bother using. Some move binds are put far apart on the keyboard, with has led me to clicking on moves I use instead of using the hotkeys. The controls are good, but they could have been better.

Gameplay- 10/10

The best part of any (good) game- the actual playing. he gameplay in DoW is new and exciting, but nothing revolutionary. Every race is well balanced and fit together great, with multiple strategies for every one. The amount of combining units make every play unique, and unlike some games (WC3) if you want to be the best, you are not shoved down a mathmatically strongest path. You will find yourself almost endlessly constructing new ways to destroy all your foes. The only bad part about the gameplay is the short campain, but not many people buy RTS games for the campain anyway.

Total- 9/10

Dawn of War deliveres is every way you would have hoped for. The graphics and gameplay strategies with unique races will keep you coming back for more. A great, great play for any RTS fan.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 09/29/04

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