Sega have just announced a new incentive for gamers interested in their catalogue. Working in partnership with Game Sessions, Sega are now offering their portfolio in a try before you buy scheme, with rental options also available.
SEGA® Europe Ltd., a leading video games publisher, today announced that it is partnering with GameSessions™, the service which allows users to download full games quickly and play for free before purchasing, by making key titles available for a free trial and for renting.
Critically acclaimed titles, representing a cross-section of SEGA’s diverse portfolio will be eligible, starting with Football Manager™ 2015, Company of Heroes™ 2: Ardennes Assault, Sonic Generations™ and Warhammer 40,000®: Space Marine®. Giving users the opportunity to try for free will allow new players and audiences the opportunity to play these titles first before committing to buy.Click here to read more...
GameKeysNow are running a bunch of multi-game promotions at the moment, including 3 for £10, £15, and £20 offers.
In the cheapest category, you can put together a games bundle of Company of Heroes 2, Binary Domain (including all DLC), and the Thief Collection for a tenner, making each game just over £3.33 each. Thanks mrbjolly!
I'm quite excited for Company of Heroes 2: Ardennes Assault. I must admit that I'm more of an offline player than an online one, having had my backside handed to me on numerous occasions, but that's what this expansion is all about. Just like Western Front Armies, Ardennes Assault will be a standalone slice of strategic action, but one that eschews the linearity of COH 2's campaign for something a little more dynamic.
My preview for Ardennes Assault went live yesterday, and here's what I had to say about my time with the game in my closing paragraph:
The bottom line is that Ardennes Assault finally brings the feeling of grand strategy and broader tactical thinking to bear on a game that has been renowned for tactical gameplay on a smaller, more individual scale. Company of Heroes has long been a series that is all about making the best with what you have, realising the importance of different individual units and the ways in which they can complement one another. Now, added to that formula, there's more of an opportunity to be a true armchair general, as well as a major on the field. It looks like it truly present the best of both worlds, and that's very exciting indeed.
As well as going hands-on with the game, I also had the opportunity to sit down with campaign designer, Mitch Lagran, to have a chat about the changes that Relic have made and the ambitions that the studio has going forwards.Check out the interview after the jump >>
It's always a good sign when a preview event starts wrapping up and the first thing you think is 'Nooooo, please let me take this game with me'. It was nice to place the latest standalone expansion pack for Company of Heroes 2 in context, with our gaggle of assembled European writers given a tour of the Bastogne barracks -- the operational heart of the Allied war effort during the Battle of the Bulge -- before checking out the game inspired by that bloody piece of history.
Inspired is certainly the word, as Relic have used the events of the battle to bookend this particular experience. Essentially, Ardennes Assault gives players the freedom to plan out their own military machinations in the region by way of a 'meta map'. If The Western Front Armies provided a multiplayer introduction to this newly explored theatre of war and the factions involved, the Ardennes Assault pack is the singleplayer counterpoint -- an expansion that zooms in on three individual companies and their commanding officers, struggling to take control of a region filled with constantly shifting German divisions. The idea is clear -- to present a relatively open ended canvas, framed by history, upon which we armchair generals might paint our personal tactical masterpieces.
Our two-hour session with the game consisted of playing the same mission multiple times. Set not far from Bastogne in the town of Houffalize, the skirmish in which we were involved saw us trying to join up with an allied column to the north, cutting through German-controlled territory, overrunning the enemy's artillery stations, and co-opting the massive guns for our own purposes. By focussing in on this single mission (there will be 18 in total we're told -- seven rather broad encounters and eleven more scripted scenarios) several times over, we were able to see how the different companies performed, and how the map changed depending upon what stage of the campaign we were at when we took the plunge.Click here to read more...
Relic have listened to their fanbase. It's taken a year, but the Public Games List option is now absolutely A Thing you can have in Company of Heroes 2 thanks to the arrival of a standalone expansion pack that sees the focus of the war move from the Siberian wastes and the Eastern Front across to a whole bunch of battlefields in and around Belgium. Finally, finally there's a server list to make configuring online multiplayer matches that much easier. It's about damn time.
In many ways, The Western Front Armies feels like an old-school expansion rather than the DLC drops we tend to see these days. Though there's nothing new per se for singleplayer strategy fans to get stuck into in terms of campaign missions, but TWFA's release heralds the arrival of two new factions: the US Allied forces and the Oberkommando West Axis army for a bunch of skirmish shenanigans, and online battles. Company of Heroes has always been a series where the offline components are really just the means by which you get to grips with the depth of tactical systems before taking your strategic brain online and pitting your abilities against other armchair generals across the globe.
The Western Front Armies doesn't require the base game so if you want to jump straight in at the deep end, you absolutely can, but here's how it works:
You're essentially purchasing the use of the new factions, along with the usual COH2 multiplayer modes, and the various tweaks and improvements that Relic have made over the last twelve months. You can buy the use of the US or Oberkommando West forces individually for around a tenner, or pay five quid more to bag them both. That needs you all of teh COH2 multiplayer goodness you could want (Theatre of War content aside), along with AI skirmish options for your purchased factions if you fancy a little bit of offline practice. You won't be able to play as the Soviet or Wehrmacht forces if you don't own the base game, but you will be able to play against COH2 veterans who haven't upgraded, so the player pool is kept nice and large. Better yet, there's no real map restriction. As well as the eight new maps included with TWFA, you'll be able to play on any of the original COH2 maps as long as one of the players in your match has the base game.
But you can buy the complete base game for less than the price of one multiplayer faction in TWFA, so what's new?Click here to read more...
Last week, I sat down with game director Quinn Duffy to have a chat about Company of Heroes 2: The Western Front Armies, some of the new units and features that are being brought to COH 2, and what Relic's plans are for the series going forwards.
Stay tuned for the full preview for Company of Heroes 2: The Western Front Armies going live next week.
Company Of Heroes 2 has received some new content on Steam today, including a singleplayer DLC pack and two free multiplayer maps.Click here to read more...
The THQ horse may be dead, but the flogging never stops. SEGA have filed a lawsuit asking for £640,000 to recoup Company Of Heroes 2 pre-orders made on Steam, the revenue from which apparently went to THQ rather than Relic Games or their new publisher.Click here to read more...
Here comes a new challenger. To celebrate Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed getting a free Steam weekend, SEGA have added Company Of Heroes 2's General Winter to the roster as a free update for the Steam version. Yes, he drives an adorable tank. Yes, it's amazing.
We'd love to see more crossovers like this to be honest.
It's been a month where the phrase 'quality over quantity' has proven particularly pertinent, especially on consoles. PC titles such as the fantastic Gunpoint and the impressive (if not exactly revolutionary) Company of Heroes 2 put their noses to the window of this month's list of the best, but could only muster honourable mentions.
Indeed, June has been mostly characterised by zombies and XBLA, by the PS3 and Naughty Dog, and by catching fish for that lazy anteater you have living next to you on the 3DS.
State of Decay - The patch is out, but in all honesty State of Decay would have made the list even in its rather buggy and broken state. We're not excusing releasing barely complete glorified betas, but this was something different, something a bit special: a game that allowed us to live out our own version of The Walking Dead, our own stories of community survival in an ever-changing open world with dynamically-generated missions and horrors. You were confronted with choices, forced to make hard decisions instead of simply watching them, and then made to actively deal with the consequences. Fantastic. - 8/10Click here to read more...
At first glance, you might be forgiven for thinking that nothing has changed. The Last Of Us still rides high in pole position, having garnered some spectacular reviews, while familiar suspects like FIFA 13, Tomb Raider, Animal Crossing: New Leaf and Assassin's Creed III still jostle for our attention.
However, just because it's summer doesn't mean that games aren't still coming out. New entries this week include the retail version of Minecraft Xbox 360 Edition, which barnstorms into a worthy second place, while Deadpool's hilarious tie-in debuts at sixth. Look out for our full review later today. Elsewhere, the excellent Company Of Heroes 2 makes an impressive entry at 10th considering that digital downloads aren't fully factored in, though it still can't quite stack up to yet another Sims 3 expansion.
As always, hit the jump for the UK top ten and links galore.Click here to read more...
Developer: Relic Entertainment
It was always going to be something of a tall order for Company of Heroes 2 to reproduce the genre-redefining impact of its predecessor. It's been seven years since Relic rocked the RTS world by giving gamers an experience that abandoned the base building, perennial resource-gathering that had become de rigeur, and serving up taxing, tactical gameplay that forced you to make the most of what you had.
Given that Company of Heroes still enjoys a healthy multiplayer community, it's important to note that its sequel isn't quite the revolutionary step up that one might expect from time gap that's almost contained an entire console generation. But place the two games side-by-side and the differences become readily apparent.
Ratcheted up to its highest settings, Company of Heroes 2 unfolds like a cinematic masterpiece. The animations are fantastically wrought, the physics engine underpinning everything proving exceptional both in form and function. Tanks shake slightly with recoil from their turrets when they fire; pinned down by shells, fresh infantry will cower and scatter even as their veteran squadmates move decisively and regroup; mortar squads and heavy gunner teams move methodically to set up their ordinance. Buildings crumble, wooden huts shedding splinters and smoke from artillery barrages, explosions sending earth and shrapnel flying as burned men claw at the ground, staggering and writhing in the throes of death.Click here to read more...
Company of Heroes 2 is shaping up superbly, and a new development diary from Relic shows just how much tactical depth has been brought to the table with the new TrueSight system, dynamic weather elements, and it expands on the new factions, progression systems, and ways in which you can switch up your tactics to change your fortunes in the midst of battle.
Company of Heroes 2 releases on PC on June 25th.
Relic-developed RTS Company Of Heroes 2 is entering open beta this afternoon, running until June 18th. If you participate, you'll get to keep all your unlocks and progress so long as you buy the full game within sixty days of launch and register it to the same Steam account.
Pre-order customers should be able to get on the beta, though new sign-ups may be able to get involved later today on the official site once it's updated. Worth checking back. Matt shares some more gameplay details in our Company Of Heroes 2 hands-on preview, ahead of the June 25th launch.
Company Of Heroes 2's latest trailer is big on tanks, showing off how rolling thunder will be a key asset for its armchair generals. That said, the video also promises "more than tanks," which is probably a sly dig at a certain popular free to play title since the previous trailer took aim at modern military shooters. Not exactly classy, but expect plenty of gameplay footage for the anticiated Relic-developed RTS.
Game's out for PC on June 25th.Click here to read more...
Relic's latest trailer for Company of Heroes 2 arrives with a bit of a swagger. Forget those shooty, gunny, bang bang titles that try to portray warfare, says this latest trailer. What you really want is the chance to control everything.Click here to read more...
A new cinematic trailer for Company Of Heroes 2 shows off some of the story cutscenes that intersperse the strategic gameplay. The Relic Entertainment-developed RTS will release on June 25th courtesy of new publisher SEGA.
Matt shares some more gameplay details in our Company Of Heroes 2 hands-on preview.
Developers: Relic Entertainment
The snow is littered with debris, and the smouldering husk of a German tank is all that remains of the penultimate armoured column on my hitlist. Six are down, only one remains. My veteran anti-tank commandos have done their jobs well, vanquishing their trundling, turreted adversaries with rifles and the occasional river. The fourth and fifth to fall were condemned to an icy grave after weakening a frozen river's surface and feigning a retreat. Now, however, the engineers who built fires to keep us safe from the cold are all face down in the dirt, and all I can do is watch my grizzled team slowly succumb to the freezing clutches of General Winter.
Just as my last triple-starred officer broaches line of sight on the final tank, he topples into the deep Siberian snow and snuffs it. The game's designer Jason Lee simply laughs at me. "To be honest," he says, "I didn't manage that one the first time around. But you came really close!" I can't tell if he's just being nice or not.
It's been a while since I've played Company of Heroes and, in that time, I've revisited my love for other RTS games such as Supreme Commander and Command & Conquer, not to mention real-time tactical gems such as Commandos. I always found that Company of Heroes managed to fulfil both sides of the coin rather well, providing a stage set for large-map strategy and resource balancing, alongside detailed micromanagement and a tactical challenge that few RTS titles could hope to stand up to.
So it is, having spent much of the last fortnight getting to grips with the multiplayer beta for Company of Heroes 2 and the upcoming game's Theatre of War mode, that I've found myself dying a lot. Half a decade of playing lesser strategy titles has only served to dull the mind and stiffen the fingers.Click here to read more...
SEGA have unveiled an all-new mode for Company of Heroes 2 called 'Theatre of War' that will see players taking on a wealth of skirmish-specific solo and co-op challenges, playing across a number of battlefields and location across 1941's Eastern Front.
Players can opt to choose to be either the Soviets or the Germans, with each faction serving up nine missions from which to choose: three solo challenge missions set in extreme conditions, three skirmishes against an AI with a distinct play style, and three co-op scenarios so you can take the field with a chum.
“We get a lot of requests from fans to showcase specific conflicts from the war and it isn’t always possible to fit these into the campaign," said producer Greg Wilson. "Theatre of War gives us the opportunity to deliver these new gameplay experiences to our fans.”
We'll have a hands-on preview from our time with the multiplayer beta and Theatre of War very soon.