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Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War - Winter Assault is the first expansion to Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War for Microsoft Windows, developed by Relic Entertainment and published by THQ. Based on Games Workshop's tabletop wargame, Warhammer 40,000, Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War - Winter Assault was released on September 23, 2005. Some time after its initial release, Winter Assault and Dawn of War were coupled together in a double pack which featured some art on a fold out cover, an Ork with a flamethrower, or a group of Imperial Guard tanks lined up for attack.
A new faction was included, the Imperial Guard, previously available in certain single player missions of Dawn of War.
The Imperial Guard specializes in defense, and therefore has the strongest defensive structures of all the factions in the game. Their infantry tends to be of lower quality than that of their opponents in terms of weapons, armor, and morale, but the Imperial Guard makes up for this with a range of powerful tanks, such as the Baneblade and Leman Russ, as well as the walking Sentinels, which until the Dark Crusade expansion were the only vehicular unit in the game which can uncapture strategic points.
There are two new single player campaigns, both of which involve each faction attempting to recover a lost Imperator Class Imperial Titan. All races from Dawn of War (Orks, Eldar, Chaos, and Space Marines) are available in addition to the new Imperial Guard, with each race trying to find and gain control of the Titan for their own reasons. Although the Titan as a whole is not controllable, its weapon systems can be used to assist in the destruction of the Necrons, who make a cameo in the final mission for each faction. In this campaign at the beginning you have a choice to either go with disorder, who are Orks and Chaos, and order which at the beginning is Eldar and Imperial Guard with the odd appearance of the Space Marines.
Many of the units available in Dawn of War were simplified, reduced or limited for the Winter Assault expansion. For example, Space Marine Predator tanks were limited to carrying anti-tank weapons while Chaos Predators were limited to anti-personnel weapons. In the original Dawn of War game both sides could upgrade their tanks from anti-personnel to anti-tank (Destructor pattern and Annihilator pattern respectively). Likewise the Land Raider was limited to one per player.
Limitations were also applied to the Orks, who lost most of their upgrade choices and became limited in their weapon choices. The Eldar had their "hard counters" removed, meaning that specialized units such as Dark Reapers were no longer as prominently effective against heavy infantry. Some units, including most of the Ork army, also lost the ability to use grenades. The Chaos Space Marines also lost the ability to upgrade to any heavy weapons other than the heavy bolter.
"Forces of Order"
In the Forces of Order campaign, you play as the Imperial Guard (with occasional allied assistance from the Space Marines) and the Eldar. General Sturnn and the Cadian 412th land on Lorn V, an ice world ruled by Chaos Space Marines and indigenous Orks, intending to assist the Ultramarines already on Lorn V get a Titan crew to the Imperator Class Titan Dominatus, a massive and powerful humanoid battle machine that can almost win a war by itself. Built in ancient times, the construction of a titan is an enormous undertaking, and any Titans now found are treasured relics. Though the Guard's beachhead hits a wall (literally) trying to retake the Planetary Defence Fortress from the forces of Chaos, the Eldar secretly assist the Guard and disable the gate preventing their progress. Eventually the Guard rescues the Ultramarines and Titan crew, and begins the long trek to the crashed Titan.
The Eldar, led by Farseer Taldeer, do everything in their power to make sure their presence is unknown, but when an Ork with unique technology capable of sensing their teleportation appears, they are forced to reveal their presence, destroy the Ork, and teleport away. Too badly damaged to accomplish their original goals, Taldeer is forced to ask Sturnn for assistance. Sturnn agrees, and the Orks are pushed back.
In the aftermath, Taldeer reveals that she does not care about the Titan, but instead her goal is the Necrons underneath the planet's surface. Ages ago, an ancient race known as the Necrons went to sleep for thousands of years, and now they are awaking. She cannot allow the Necrons to get off Lorn V, because if they do, they will cause untold damage to the surrounding systems before being stopped. The two factions ally, but both know their goals are mutually exclusive. At this point the player may choose to pursue the goals of either the Eldar or the Imperial Guard.
If the player chooses the Imperial Guard, Sturnn assists the Ultramarines in getting the Titan crew past an alliance of Orks and Chaos into the safety of a waiting psychic shield, preventing their enemies from following them directly to the Titan. However, Taldeer and her Eldar are trapped with the Orks and Chaos, and she tells Sturnn behind the shield that he cannot defeat the Necrons without her: however, Sturnn laughs off her prediction. As he will not risk his men for hers, Sturnn and the 412th march on to their goal, while the Eldar are butchered a mere few feet away from them.
Upon reaching the Titan, the Ork/Chaos alliance descends on the Imperial encampment protecting the Titan. The crew begins to work, but they require a massive amount of power to use the Titan, and Sturnn is forced to protect the Titan, several power generators, and a nearby Imperial encampment of survivors from the Forces of Disorder. Although the Titan is too badly damaged to move until extensive repairs can be carried out, its now-operational weapons easily dispatch the Orks and Chaos. However, the Necrons now awaken, and butcher the remaining forces of the Ork/Chaos alliance. Beginning their slow march to destroy the only living souls left, the Imperials, they nearly succeed before the Titan Crew is able to destroy the Necron Monoliths using the Titan's weapons. Ultimately, the Cadian 412th and the Ultramarines are successful in repairing the Titan, destroying the Ork/Chaos alliance, and stopping the Necrons before they escaped the planet, but at the cost of Taldeer and her Eldar (which does not bother Sturnn or the Ultramarines in any way).
Taldeer uses Imperial distraction of the Guard and Ultramarines to teleport her buildings, troops, and Soul Stone past the psychic shield. The Ultramarines are slaughtered, but Sturnn and much of the Imperial Guard manage to escape the horde of Orks and Chaos.
Unlike the Imperial Guard campaign, Taldeer does not fight the Forces of Disorder when she reaches the Titan: the Imperial Guard has surrounded her, but the Necrons awake and begin trying to kill the Eldar. Taldeer uses the Soul Stone and sneaks past the shield to destroy a Monolith, but too many more appear before the Soul Stone can recharge. Desperate for a weapon to use, she decides to power up the "primitive, but still powerful" weapons of the Titan surrounding her (able to jury-rig a solution, since she does not have a Titan crew), convinces Sturnn that he can have the Titan once the Necrons are defeated (thus once again gaining the humans as allies), and uses the Titan's weaponry to utterly defeat the Necrons. Although successful in destroying the Necrons of Lorn V and gaining a momentary victory over the Necron war machine across the galaxy, Taldeer's unfamiliarity with the Titan's weapons systems causes them to explode, destroying the Titan. She and her base manage to teleport away in time, but the fate of Sturnn and his men is left unknown.
"Campaign of Disorder"
The Campaign of Disorder begins with Warlord Gorgutz trying to unite the Ork Boyz under his control. With Gorgutz's starting force, he launches attacks across Headcrushaz, Rokkitrangaz, Burnaboyz, and Kwikmeks, destroying their "Big Banners" and uniting them under his rule. His force is eventually stopped by the shielded gate of Footstompaz, which he promptly destroys the generators feeding power to the gate. He soon discovers that Squiggoths are loose in Footstompaz's base. After freeing the Mad Dok from the holding pen, he brings Squiggoths and Footstompaz under his control, after which he attacks a remote Chaos outpost.
Gorgutz, to take his WAAAGH! across the planet, flies to some unknown destination but he is shot down by a Forces of Chaos battery. Gorgutz survives, and the Chaos Lord Crull is out to get him. Crull soons meets Gorgutz's remaining boyz launching assaults on his Temples of Khorne. While trying to kill Gorgutz, Crull realizes Gorgutz is surrounded by a shield, making him invulnerable. Crull soon sets out to destroy the Ork base nearby and also a power generator feeding power to the shield. After destroying Ork's base and the generator, Gorgutz launches a massive assault on Chaos, but Crull promptly returns and puts an end to Gorgutz. Gorgutz is dead, but before Crull can savour his victory the Imperial artillery barrage begins on the location. Gorgutz suddenly springs up, as it turned out he was just playing dead. Crull expects Gorgutz's force to aid him defeating the Imperials, but Gorgutz flatly refuses and escapes to rouse his boyz and kill the "humiez" himself.
After Gorgutz escapes, he gathers his WAAAGH! and assaults the Imperial Guard base, killing the Imperial General Sturnn, taking his head as a trophy and furtherly enraging Crull by saying that he will be next. Crull, however, finds out about the titan and is determined to use it to destroy his enemies. To do this, he summons Chaos Sorcerers to gather blood from local Imperial forces to appease Khorne, a Chaos god. At this time, and Eldar force appears at Crull's base and attacks it, continually launching assaults throughout the mission. When Crull gathers enough blood, the Eldar summon an Avatar of Khaine, a manifestation of their god, to defeat the Chaos base. Crull is forced to use the blood gathered to summon a Bloodthirster, a powerful Daemon, and defeats the Eldar. However, he uses too much blood summoning the Bloodthirster and is forced to gather more later. However, he learns Gorgutz is amassing his forces near the Titan: fearful of the safety of his prize, Crull decides to confront Gorgutz and put an end to him.
Crull and his Chaos forces fall upon the Ultramarine convoy transporting the Titan crew, killing all they find. The Chaos forces then proceed to butcher their way through the remaining Imperials to the psychic gate, which they then open for long enough to get their men and vehicles through, before sealing it shut on the Orks. As the Orks desperately try to breach it, Crull taunts Gorgutz with the knowledge that he only spared the Ork so he could fight the Imperials and Eldar, thus saving Crull the trouble of doing so: Crull remarks to Gorgutz "You've been a good dog...NOW DIE!". Furious that their WAAAGH is at an end, the Orks turn on Gorgutz, who narrowly fights his way out. However, with no one to lead them, the Orks no longer pose a threat.
Crull and his men establish a base near the Titan and re-erect their sacrificial pit. While fending off attacks from the last few Imperial outposts, corrupted psykers under Crull's control capture Imperial guardsman and bring back to the base to be sacrificed. But as Crull acquires enough blood, the Necrons arrive: knowing he can't stop them, but now having the favour of Khorne, Crull orders his sorcerors to possess the Titan, bringing its weapons under his command. With the power of the Titan, the Necrons and surviving Imperials are annihilated. Delighted with his victory, Crull prepares to rebuild the Titan, and then take his war across the Universe. He vows to his troops that what will come next "is not war: it is endless sacrifice in His name! Blood for the Blood God...let the universe drown in it!"
Gorgutz and his boyz smash their way through the Eldar forces in the city, killing Taldeer, and reach the psychic gate before Crull, cutting the power to it to allow them entry. A desperate battle ensues between the Orks and Chaos forces: Crull sneers Gorgutz won't know how to use the Titan, but Gorgutz retorts he plans to destroy it, since it's of no use to him. Mortified at this, Crull launches a full attack on the gate, forcing his way through.
Gorgutz and the Orks establish a base near the Titan, and a brutal, three-way battle begins between the Orks, Chaos Space Marines and the last few Imperial survivors. Several of the Titan weapons are destroyed and the Imperials are wiped out, but the Orks keep fighting: even the arrival of the Necrons, who are quickly wiped out by the sheer number of the Orks, prove only a momentary distraction. The Orks finally fight their way to the Chaos base, and while they destroy Crull's army, Gorgutz and Crull face off in a final duel: Gorgutz kills Crull and cuts off his head as a trophy. In the aftermath of his victory, Gorgutz seems satisfied by what his WAAAGH achieved, but wonders where he can find another world to fight on.
Although the game has several endings there is a canonical ending to the game, as established by its sequel Dark Crusade.
- Farseer Taldeer is still alive, as she leads the Eldar in the Dark Crusade Campaign, suggesting that she was successful in reaching the Titan before the Imperial Guard. She dies in all the other factions' storylines.
- Warboss Gorgutz lives to fight another day, literally. He can be seen in Dark Crusade, leading the Orks again. It says that Gorgutz is forced to retreat from Lorn V by the Imperial Guard, but not before killing Lord Crull and taking his skull with him.
- The Chaos Lord Crull's skull was taken by Gorgutz and can be retrieved in Dark Crusade, given to Eliphas the Inheritor should he be successful in the campaign.
- Should the Eldar defeat the Imperial Guard in Dark Crusade, the narrator states that Farseer Taldeer was branded "an enemy of the Imperium" after her manipulation of the Cadian 412th regiment on Lorn V. Lucas Alexander's regiment was ordered to pursue the Eldar and that "this long chase was finally over" when they faced off at Victory Bay.
- Conversely, if Governor-Militant Lucas Alexander defeats the Eldar in Dark Crusade, the narrator states that his "original mission was at an end", suggesting that his original primary mission was to hunt down Farseer Taldeer for her treachery on Lorn V. His new mission of Liberating Kronus was only given after discovering the Hellstorm Cannon at Victory Bay.
It is thus likely that the canonical ending is the not just one ending but two: the Eldar/Ork ending: Taldeer escapes from Lorn V to continue her mission to stymie the awakening Necrons, much to the surprise of the Imperial Guard, who send Gen. Lucas Alexander to question her involvement in Lorn V conflict, thus following her to Kronus. Gorgutz has the skull of Crull, meaning they finally faced off just like the final Ork mission before Gorgutz was forced to retreat and leave Lorn V. However Gorgutz was unable to reach the Titan, as Taldeer arrived at the crash site first.
However, according to the book Dawn of War:Tempest, Gabriel Agelos (the main character from the original game) arrives at the planet to find that the Imperial Guard were victorious and had begun to repair the Titan. It is also mentioned that Taldeer survives the massacre, however badly wounded and taken prisoner by the Imperials. It is therefore possible that the Imperials won, Gorgutz killed Crull and that Taldeer escaped and was being hunted down by Lucas Alexander.
- Brian Dobson - Khorne Berzerker, Slugga/Shoota Boyz, Mega Armored Nobz
- Michael Dobson - Techpriest Enginseer, Sanctioned Psyker, Chaos Lord Crull
- Paul Dobson - General Sturnn, Chaos Sorcerer (Cutscenes Only)
- Scott McNeil - Imperial Guardsman, Sentinel, Chimera, Hellhound, Basilisk, Kasrkin, Baneblade, Ogryn, Chaplain Varnus
- Laura Sadiq – Farseer Taldeer, Warlock (Cutscenes Only), Fire Dragons
- Brian Drummond – Vindicare Temple Assassin, Warboss Gorgutz.
- "Index Astartes – Blood Ravens". White Dwarf: Australian Edition (298). November 2004. ISSN 0265-8712.
- Goto, Cassern (2004). Dawn of War. Nottingham: Black Library. ISBN 1-84416-152-8.
- Goto, Cassern (2005). Dawn of War: Ascension. Nottingham: Black Library. ISBN 1-84416-285-0.