Dawn of War III is out, and critics and fans seem to be at odds with one another…
Now that Relic Entertainment’s Dawn of War III is out, we’re starting to see the first waves of reviews stream in. If you head on down to Metacritic or Steam and look at the aggregate ratings, the game is doing pretty fantastically on both sites–boasting a Metacritic Score of ~80 and a favorable ranking on Steam.
Most of the critics agree that the game, while flawed, delivers an engaging, entertaining experience that’s above the norm for these kind of games. A few talk about the innovations that Relic Entertainment made, drawing inspiration from MOBA games when designing their elite units–and having played the beta myself, I can say getting to field one of your elite units feels fun. You get in there and just start wrecking shop.
Others talk about the revamped feel of the three factions–with more than a few talking about how fantastic the Orks feel in this game. And what’s not to love about them, with their scrappy ways and WAAAAAAAGH towers that go off, Mad Max style, in the best ways.
Seriously, if you can’t see how this is awesome, it might be time to consider a new career, because you’re clearly dead inside.
But then there’s the other side of things–so far, the game hasn’t been receiving as much love from gamers. I mean you’ll see some positive reviews here and there, but most of the reviews that are in so far, are, by and large overly negative. Now, it could just be that we’re only seeing a reactionary wave of user reviews–the game only launched a couple of days ago, so maybe it’s just first impressions.
I mean, it’s not like the people who rush out to buy a game on opening day are the sort who feel very strongly about the game, and are perhaps a little leery of seeing anything that isn’t exactly what they already like.
I mean, you just don’t see that sort of thing on the internet.*
And it’s not like people tend to focus on one aspect they don’t like and decry the whole experience as somehow “tainted” because of it.
BoLS readers, of course, are incredibly sophisticated, attractive people who would never fall for something like this.
Now, that’s not to say that any of it is unwarranted. Many of the user reviews raise some salient points, the game is not without its problems. But even the ones that have critiques of the game aren’t as condemning of the game. To save you the time of wading through the reviews, both fawning and critical, here’s what I found:
There are some balance issues across the board. Managing your base feels a lot less dynamic than in prior editions of the game. Both users and critics agree that the single player campaign is lackluster. And the elite units, while fun, do kind of disrupt the flow of gameplay across the single player missions.
Perhaps focusing on one faction’s story might have been preferable to the scattershot single player experience we have (although in fairness, this is me comparing the game to Warcraft 3 and wanting each faction to have a campaign as rich as that, which, you know, sure that’d be nice but then the game still wouldn’t be out). But the game really shines in multiplayer right now, where it can live up to its full potential.
In the end, time will tell. And with Necrons planned for the very near future, it will be interesting to see how that changes the shape of the game. Be sure and stay tuned for more updates.
What do *you* think about Dawn of War III? Is it a Dawn of War Game? Is it a MOBA? If so, does this mean it’s time to go into esports?