Un nouveau et a priori très bel épisode de la série Company of Heroes est désormais disponible. Intitulé Ardennes Assault, il propose de rejouer la fameuse opération Wacht am Rhein, mieux connu sous le nom de bataille des Ardennes, dans laquelle entre décembre 1944 et janvier 1945 les américains furent confrontés à une violente contre-attaque surprise du troisième Reich. Voyez les deux bande-annonces ci-après pour vous faire une idée de l’ambiance (encore mieux retranscrite à l’écran dans l’épisode 6 de la série télé Band of Brothers, à voir pour qui ne la connaitrait pas encore).
Utilisant le superbe moteur graphique de Company of Heroes 2, le jeu propose 18 scénarios et 3 types de compagnies bénéficiant de différents tactiques et compétences. A noter qu’en plus Ardennes Assault comporte un nouveau système dit de meta-map, sorte de carte stratégique permettant de choisir l’ordre des missions et donc variant encore plus les choix tactiques (cf. description et la capture d’écran ci-dessous).
With Company of Heroes 2: Ardennes Assault, Relic is moving the Company of Heroes single-player campaign experience forward into new territory for the franchise. One of the biggest additions to the series is the new Meta-Map on which the fierce fighting of the Battle of the Bulge plays out.
Acting as the connective tissue for the missions in the Ardennes Assault campaign, the Meta-Map allows players to access the majority of their missions via this virtual map of the disputed region. Players will have their distinct companies with which to move around the map, allowing them to choose their play order in a way that’s new to the Company of Heroes franchise.
The map reflects a player’s progress and shows the effects of their actions; giving the campaign depth, the player control and their actions consequence beyond the standard linear narratives.
The new campaign map will offer:
- Tactical choices: player will be able to control where the campaign proceeds and which of their unique companies are best suited to tackle the German threat in the area.
- Enemy strength: As a consequence of player actions enemy forces may either strengthen or weaken in particular sectors. Players will decide whether to attack a sector early when it may be weak, or to hold off and risk the Germans fortifying the area with additional troops.
- Events: Dynamic events will offer players choices and the potential for rewards that can alter the course of the campaign, enemy strength and the troops and resources that are available on the battlefield. These events will add a dynamic element to each play through ensuring variety and increased replay value, while deepening the narrative.
- Bonus objectives: Optional mission objectives that will occur randomly throughout the campaign and grant rewards upon completion. Players will need to judge whether it is worth risking the lives of their soldiers for these potential rewards.
- Veterancy: In Ardennes Assault unit veterancy applies to the company as a whole, and persists between missions. Players can increase their company veterancy by vetting up their units in missions. However, losing vetted up units can decrease veterancy as well.
- Requisition: As the campaign progresses players will gain Requisition points for their battlefield performance. Shared between all of the player’s companies Requisition allows players to reinforce their companies which may have lost soldiers in combat as well as upgrading a company’s abilities.
This new Meta-map is an exciting addition to the Company of Heroes franchise and is available exclusively for Company of Heroes 2: Ardennes Assault.