Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II – Chaos Rising
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Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II – Chaos Rising is the first expansion to Dawn of War II. It was developed by Relic Entertainment and released by THQ on March 11, 2010 in North America and March 12, 2010 in Europe.
Dawn of War II: Chaos Rising is a stand-alone expansion that also combines with a previous Dawn of War II installation. The expansion adds a new campaign and allows playing multiplayer matches with Dawn of War II owners, but if the player doesn't own Dawn of War II they can only play the new campaign and only use the new faction in multiplayer.
Dawn of War II: Chaos Rising adds a new single-player campaign (the original co-op functionality remains) that introduces longer, more heavily scripted missions, a new character/unit (the Librarian Jonah Orion) and a return to Aurelia against a new faction, the Chaos Space Marines. Some missions also have a limited roster of Imperial Guard opponents, hinting at what Relic had planned for Dawn of War II: Retribution.
The expansion adds one new playable multiplayer faction, the Chaos Space Marines. The release was also accompanied by a major update to the original game, adding new units to pre-existing factions and enabling all owners of Dawn of War II to play games against Chaos Space Marines even without their own copy of Chaos Rising.
- Chaos Space Marines – new faction
- Librarian – new Space Marine unit
- Weirdboy – new Ork unit
- Wraithguard – new Eldar unit
- Genestealers – new Tyranid unit
- Tyrant Guard – new Tyranid unit
- New maps: Ice Station Obelis, Selenon Fissure, Argent Shelf
- New upgrades for Devastator Heavy Bolter Squad, Dreadnought and Predator Tank
The Last Stand
|This section contains generic information about the mode. For full information on The Last Stand, please visit our The Last Stand portal.|
The Last Stand was also updated with two new heroes, the Hive Tyrant and Chaos Sorcerer, upon the release of Chaos Rising. The new heroes were made available for owners of the original Dawn of War II as well.
The gameplay remains the same. The game is a fast-paced and action-oriented real-time strategy (RTS) game with heavy tactical elements, it could be classified as an action RTS or real-time tactics (RTT) as well as RTS.
The campaign mode in Chaos Rising is shorter than the original campaign, but missions are longer and better designed (unlike the very similar random missions in Dawn of War II). The player still picks the commander and three other units for each mission, and each unit can be customized with skill points and wargear between missions. The maximum level has been raised to 30 and there is the possibility of characters becoming corrupted by Chaos, gaining new powers in the process.
The multiplayer mode remains largely the same, with the new faction and other new units/upgrades changing the balance somewhat.
One year after the events of Dawn of War II and the defeat of the Tyranid invasion (as well as the Eldar and Ork forces) of sub-sector Aurelia. The Force-Commander and his strike-force arrive on Planet Aurelia, along with the newly requisitioned Strike Cruiser "Retribution", after receiving a Blood Ravens encoded distress signal. The distress signal turns out to be a trap, and the Blood Ravens are ambushed by traitor Guardsmen of House Vandis. After escaping the trap and leaving the area, the Force-Commander along with the Dreadnought Davian Thule move to rescue the Librarian Jonah Orion, who is under attack by Eldar forces that have unearthed ancient ruins and revived Wraithguards.
After receiving a distress call from Governor Derosa, the Blood Ravens proceed to Meridian's Angel Gate where bands of Orks, driven there by House Vandis forces, are looting the area. They later encounter Chaos Space Marines of the Black Legion who are attempting to take over Angel Forge. Despite the presence of Eliphas the Inheritor, a former Dark Apostle from the Word Bearers Legion thought long dead on Kronus, the forces of Chaos are repelled. After halting the Chaos raid, a combined Imperial Guard-Blood Ravens strike-force returns to Aurelia to attack Legion forces dug into the area. Resisting intense artillery barrages from House Vandis forces and wave upon wave of cultists, the Blood Ravens discover a Chaos Temple and after a gruesome battle against summoned Daemons, destroy it completely. Taunting them throughout their struggles is the champion of the Black Legion, Araghast the Pillager.
After the Chaos Temple falls, the warp begins to tear the planet asunder which forces them to make an immediate evacuation. Araghast let the Force-Commander and his strike-force to escape since it will waste the value of the traitor in the Blood Ravens and tells Eliphas that his vengeance can wait. On board the Retribution, a recording was found that implicates a traitor within the Chapter who gave Chaos the transmitting codes that were used to ambush the Blood Ravens when they first arrived on Aurelia. The Blood Ravens then return to Meridian to aid the 85th Vendoland in recapturing Spire Legis. With the help of Sergeant Thaddeus (who requested to be on the mission), they successfully weaken the Chaos and Heretic forces holding the area. They also destroy an Eldar strike force that was uncovering ancient ruins on Typhon with Sergeant Tarkus. After dispatching numerous problems, Space Marine Scouts on Calderis send out a distress call that they have been engaged by a substantial number of Chaos forces. With the help of Sergeant Cyrus, they save the initiates from certain death and kill a Chaos Sorcerer operating in the area. Soon after, a contingent of the Blood Ravens Honor Guard, led by Captain Apollo Diomedes, arrives. Diomedes, acting on behalf of the Blood-Ravens' Chapter Master and Chief Librarian, Azariah Kyras, orders all Blood Ravens to cease all engagements with the Black Legion forces and return to their ships until further ordered.
Disgruntled by the orders but still loyal, the Blood Ravens return to the Retribution. Several highly encrypted transmissions are intercepted. However, despite their best efforts they are unable to fully dissipate the message's masking. Techmarine Martellus, having survived the Tyranid invasion, accesses the Astronomic Array on Typhon. He reports that he has recovered detailed information about the arrivals and departures of a giant Space Hulk, The Judgment of Carrion. The Space Hulk contains a logic engine system that is powerful enough to remove the masking on the intercepted messages. Meanwhile, investigating how heretic forces had duplicated a Blood Ravens signal, Cyrus learns that there is a traitor on board the Retribution.
When the Space Hulk arrives as Martellus predicted, the Blood Ravens find the ship infested by a splinter of the Tyranid Hive fleet. The foul taint of the Warp also permeates the vessel, cutting their stay aboard extremely short. Not far into the Space Hulk, they discover the bodies of fallen Blood Ravens of the Fifth Company; mysteriously their gene-seeds have been prepared but not collected and stored by an Apothecary. Raising even more questions, the names of the fallen Marines are still marked as on-duty within the Chapter Honor Guard. After much progression throughout the ship, slaughtering innumerable amounts of feral Tyranids and recovering the remaining gene-seed with Librarian Jonah Orion, the Blood Ravens finally gain access into a large sealed vault that contains the logic engine system. Inside, numerous Space Marine corpses strew the floor, each puzzlingly with their gene-seeds prepared but not collected. While accessing the logic engine, they find a dataslate written by Apothecary Galan that details the expedition he and fellow Marines made onto the Space Hulk.
Galan was part of the expeditionary group led by the then-Librarian Azariah Kyras. The message contains references to a Daemon named Ulkair that was stalking them within the ship. The Daemon is seeking their gene-seed which compelled Apothecary Galan to try and hide them. Galan worries however that, eventually, the subtle whisperings of the Daemon might overcome them, he also worries for Kyras who has exerted much of his psychic strength in fending off the Daemon and his minions. Kyras seems apathetic about the death of his Battle Brothers and slight hints are made from Galan's description of events that point at slight corruption on his part.
Leaving the Space Hulk and allowing Martellus to analyze the newly acquired logic engine to unmasked messages of the traitor, the Blood Ravens answer to yet another distress signal from Governor Derosa. Chaos Forces have besieged the Capital City of Meridian and are assaulting the Governor's palace itself. The Force-Commander goes to the defense of the Governor and beats back multiple waves of Black Legion and Vandis Heretic forces on the palace's doorstep. The Blood Ravens receive a transmission on their private voice channels from Araghast the Pillager, mocking them and challenging them along with Sergeant Avitus to a duel. The Blood Ravens, despite orders from Diomedes, assault Planet Aurelia and answer to Araghast's challenge. Araghast uses the powers of the warp to teleport himself away from the Blood Ravens when they finally located him until Eliphas, who is overseeing the teleportation rituals, betrays Araghast and refuses to transport him away. Enraged, Araghast violently fights back the Blood Ravens, who ultimately end up defeating him. Leaving Eliphas as the new field commander of the Black Legion. Enthralled by the silencing of Araghast, the Blood Ravens remark the fitting end that a leader of traitors was, ironically, destroyed thanks to a traitor. Martellus, analyzing copious amounts of Data, reports to the Force-Commander that Apothecary Galan is still alive and also within the Honor Guard of the Blood-Ravens. They also find yet another coded transmission from the traitor to Galan.
Despite the threat posed by Chaos, Captain Diomedes orders all the Blood Ravens to leave the sub-sector immediately. Gabriel Angelos, unwilling to simply leave the Blood Ravens recruiting worlds to fester, orders the Force-Commander and his squads to disregard Diomedes's orders. Angelos travels to Calderis where Diomedes is operating out of, and confronts him regarding the retreat order. Diomedes, acting in the name of Kyras, declares Angelos and his men Traitors to the Chapter, and sends out a notice to all Blood Ravens to kill him on sight. Knowing that Gabriel Angelos can be no true traitor, the Force-Commander and his squads infiltrate Captain Diomedes's fire-base on Calderis. Within, they locate Apothecary Galan along with a host of Honor Guards that they find have all been corrupted by the forces of Chaos. The strike-force attacks Galan who in his dying moments thanks them for freeing him from the influence of Chaos. He then tells them that everyone on board the Judgment of Carrion had been corrupted by Chaos, along with most of the men here. Captain Diomedes's is found to be pure of corruption however, but is blinded by his pride. The strike-force proceeds to the Honor Guard's Command Center where they hope to access its logs to expose the traitor on the Retribution. The Command Center is unfortunately destroyed and Captain Diomedes's appears on the scene, branding the Commander as heretics for what they have just done. The Commander and his squad explain to Diomedes what had transpired and the events on board the Judgment of Carrion. Diomedes was shocked to hear about it, along with the name of the daemon, and allows them to escape. Meanwhile, logs from Galan's dataslate that was found on board the Judgment of Carrion reveal that Kyras had fallen to Chaos long before the expedition. In addition, the Daemon Ulkair was imprisoned within Planet Aurelia and they finally realize that Eliphas is planning to release him.
On Planet Aurelia, Eliphas explains that just before the planet was taken by the Warp long ago, Kyras managed to imprison Ulkair after Kyras's master Moriah was killed in battle. Soon after, the warp descended upon the planet taking both Kyras and the Planet. Kyras, trapped within the warp, made a deal with Ulkair to guarantee his escape, he ended up on board the Judgment of Carion. Eliphas then sacrifices a captured Blood Raven scout and a plague champion to release Ulkair. Ulkair thanks Eliphas for releasing him and promises him more power and control under its service, albeit sinisterly. As the player and his squad return to planet Aurelia, they discover that the traitor is (one of the player's squad members with the highest level of corruption, or Techmarine Martellus if the squad is completely pure) who immediately leaves the Strike Cruiser and joins with the Chaos Force on the ground. After they kill the traitor, he tells them that Ulkair has been revived and confirms that Kyras was part of Chaos. Gabriel arrives with his Battle-Barge The Litany of Fury, the Force-Commander and his squads immediately tell him what they have learned. Gabriel, wasting no time, launches a grand assault upon Aurelia's Chapter Keep. Making use of Predator tanks to secure a beachhead, numerous Chaos Bases are destroyed as the Force-Commander and his squad gather to assault Ulkair. As they begin to approach the Daemon, they are intercepted by Eliphas who forces them into combat. Before they can deal a killing blow, Eliphas is saved by the warp and escapes death yet again. The Commander and his men now have no more obstacles in their way to Ulkair. In a long and difficult battle, the Daemon is finally vanquished and sealed again. However, Ulkair remarks that no prison may hold him forever and that he will eventually return and slaughter them all.
At the Battle-Barge The Litany of Fury, Gabriel declares their victory over the Black Legion and Ulkair the Unclean One. He tells though of the greater challenges that await them, since Azariah Kyras has been corrupted by Chaos, the only thing that the Blood Ravens may do now is slay him. Gabriel then speaks to the Commander and his squad about their actions (Depending on the player's redemption and corruption level of choice and actions). Meanwhile, a resurrected Eliphas tells Abaddon the Despoiler, The Warmaster of the Black Legion, that he promises to annihilate the Blood Ravens.
Reviews for Chaos Rising were generally positive, with a rating of 86% from Metacritic and ratings of 8–9 out of 10 or 4–5 out of 5 from major reviewers.
- Metacritic: 86% 
- 1UP.com: A-
- Eurogamer: 9/10
- GamePro: 4.5/5
- Gamespot: 8.5/10
- GameSpy: 4/5
- IGN: 8.5/10