Thursday, February 28, 2013

Dawn of War II - Squad Mod v2.5

Here are some images from the Dawn of War II tutorial mission with Jaylo's Squad Mod installed. There are apparently still some issues with the mod and work seems to have stopped on it.

Doubled enemies and tons of changes to the player squads are the key features of this mod. It looks a bit overdone / over-the-top, but some people might still like it, especially if they have already played through the campaign.

Squad Mod 2.5 tutorial 1

Squad Mod 2.5 tutorial 2

Squad Mod 2.5 tutorial item drop

(The excess wargear in the following screens is from a different mod)

Force Commander after tutorial

Tarkus after tutorial

Dawn of War II - How to restart a mission without advancing the Day counter

(Click here for a list of all our posts on Dawn of War II.)

In Dawn of War II, you do not get multiple save game slots for the same character/campaign. Whenever you complete or abort a mission, the day counter advances, with consequences to the campaign.
You cannot also save midway during a mission. You can abort a mission and return to it later, but the day counter advances.

In this post, we present two ways to get around both.

Simple Way: Backup Your Save Game
Basically, find where the game saves your campaign progress and make a copy of it. Typically, the save game will be called <force commander name>.sav. So if your Force Commander's name is "Rommel", the save game name will be "Rommel.sav".

I recommend adding to the day and mission to the name of your savegame to help you keep your backups organized (obviously you will have to rename it back properly before using if you restore a savegame). For example: "Rommel.sav d8x2 Greenskin Armour" to indicate this savegame for character "Rommel" finished the mission "Greenskin Armour" on Day 8 using the second extra deployment for that day.

To "restart" a mission, just abort it (End Mission) and return to the Main Menu. Your progress will be saved as usual. Dig through your copies of previous save games and overwrite the current save game, then load the campaign again.

Advanced Way: Saving Mid-Mission
WARNING: Read the bugs.

It turns out that the vanilla Dawn of War II campaign simply disables your ability to save during a mission. You just need to re-enable it. Combine this with making backups of your saves to have the ability to roll back to previous missions.

DOW2 load mission in progress

The Dawn of War II campaign is packed into .sga files, but you can create override files and put them in the GameAssets\ directory. In order for the game to accept these override files, you need to run the game with the command line switch "-dev". Just add -dev to the end of the execution target in your shortcut.

The override file you need is Data\campaign\space_marines\campaign_description.lua. If you are not running any mods, you should not have that file anywhere. Cut and paste the code below into a text file and save it in GameAssets\Data\campaign\space_marines\ as campaign_description.lua.

campaign_description =
 campaign_title = 602508, -- LOCDB [602508] 'Dawn of War II'
 id = "aurelian_crusade",
 intro_video_path = "movies:w5.lua",
 campaign_choice_button = "DATA:UI/Textures/generic/fe/select_race/dow2_campaign",
 first_mission = "ss1_sep1",
 last_mission = "me1",
 multiple_deployments_enabled = true,
 can_be_saved = true, -- defaults to "false", which disables saving during a mission

 savior_bonus =
  secured_stratagem = 40,
  wargear_items_acquired = 10,
  defense_mission_expiry = -20,
  resilience_stars = 100,
  secured_territory = 10,
  tyranid_rating = -10,
  mission_expiry = 0,

 warrior_bonus =
  enemies_killed = 1,
  assassinate_mission_expiry = -100,
  speed_stars = 100,
  zeal_stars = 30,

If you are already running a mod, look for campaign_description.lua in the mod. If the mod does not have this file, add it to the mod. If the mod does have this file, open it and look for the line can_be_saved = false, and change it to can_be_saved = true,.

When you are in a mission, you can now open the menu and you should see the option to save the mission in progress. The mid-mission save file will be in the same place as the regular save games, but called <force commander>.sv. When you load a campaign, if you have a mid-mission save there will be a button "Load Mission in Progress" and you can pick up where you left off without the Day counter advancing.

This method comes with certain bugs. Basically, it looks like some things are NOT saved. We'll update this list as we find them.
  • If you are capturing a Automated Factory, Communications Array, or Shrine for the first time on a map, a script drops field generators and gives you an item that grants you limited uses of a power associated with that type of strategic asset.
    • This will NOT happen if you are continuing a mission. You must capture that asset before your first mid-mission save for it to work properly.
    • You may be able to capture both assets because the scripts aren't working properly. Since you are normally only allowed to capture one, I recommend you just capture one.
  • If you destroy one of the resupply boxes that give you additional uses of limited-use items, AND if you do NOT pick it up, the item will disappear when you reload a mission save. It appears that things dynamically spawned are not saved.
  • If you are playing a Defense mission, do NOT use this. It appears that your current objective to destroy the current wave of attackers will never update, and new enemy waves will not spawn. Since the enemy waves do not complete, the mission never completes.
  • There is a bug regarding the awarding of extra deployments:
    • If you haven't gotten any extra deployments for the day yet, and you reload a save, you will only get an extra deployment at 15/15 stars (or 14 stars if you hold all 6 Automated Foundries).
Since there are so many issues, the best way to use it is to play through a tough mission with it. This way, you can incrementally work your way through the mission instead of having to start all over again whenever you make a wrong move. Afterwards, load a mod with the damage-received settings for your difficulty lowered and play through the mission safely. You will generally want to make your own "God mode" mod anyway in case you need to roll back to a previous save and don't want to have to re-play tedious missions at regular difficulty.

If you save just prior to a boss, you can retry that boss as well as try various strategies on it, without having to replay an entire mission to get to the boss.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Company of Heroes - Normandy Campaign - Mission 5 - Montebourg

For a list of all our Company of Heroes Anthology walkthroughs, click here.

Montebourg is a fairly easy, but long and tedious mission. Most of it is tank action until you finally get your HQ going and can pull out snipers.

Phase 1 - Secure safe route
Do NOT rush to rescue Dog Company. They got in trouble because they overextended their advance, and if you rush in, you will be making the same mistake.
From your starting position, take the HQ just to the north and get ready to defend it. Leave 1-2 Armoured Cars there (you can substitute the Halftrack if you upgrade it to the quad guns, which I recommend). They should be able to handle any infantry unit thrown at them.
Build the Triage Centre outside the main HQ door so that if you retreat a unit, they will finish their retreat inside the healing radius of the Triage Centre.

You should have at least one fast anti-infantry vehicle to accompany your tanks as they have the speed needed to quickly outflank an enemy AT gun (but if they get shot from the side, an Armoured Car is usually finished in one hit). Follow your tanks with your Engineers to repair them as (on Expert) in the early game, the German tanks are strong until you can get improved cannons.

We assume that the enemy won't magically appear from off-map from the west, so secure the west-map-edge territories as you head up to get Dog Company. Also look at the fields on the east side of the road. In this way, clear your way to Dog Company. Relieve them and rearrange everyone to defend your HQ area and the territories around it that you can capture. Do NOT try to hold the territory where Dog Company holed up. It is too far out and has too many approaches for the enemy.

Phase 2 - Capture territory south to north
At your HQ, prioritize getting your Sherman tank main guns upgraded, then 1-2 additional tanks, then 2 snipers to quickly scout and kill. Take out AT guns and mortars whenever you can; since these teams need 3 people, two snipers killing two squadmembers will destroy the whole unit because the third member dies automatically.
In the meantime, you will have to be careful of running into AT guns while expanding. Either way, you need to expand to get resources or you will be on the defensive for a very long time.

Leave the crossroads strategic point alone until you have captured every territory. For now, slowly capture territories one at a time, focussing on the south and east. Until you have located the enemy HQ near the middle of the eastern edge of the map, make sure your HQ is protected against infantry as the Axis will send sorties of flamethrower-equipped Pioneers and heavy machine gun teams to try to destroy your buildings or retake strategic points.

When the Panzers come (announced in a cutscene), assemble your tanks in a loose semi-circle on the main road to hit them from the flanks as they come in. Keep engineers close by to help repair them. Until you upgrade the tank guns, you might need additional support from an AT gun (get one the Germans have left on the field instead of building your own). Otherwise, on Expert Difficulty, two tanks was fine so long as one was hitting the flank AND you have one or two Engineer repair teams.
In the unlikely case that you have munitions to spare, the panzers do not have anti-infantry guns, so it's somewhat safe to Sticky Bomb them with your infantry.

The initial rush is four tanks from the north in tight formation as they come down to where the road forks. Below that, they seem to split up a bit more. Another four are scattered further north. If you haven't secured the eastern map edge territory, four could assemble there and head over, but not until the initial group on the road has been engaged and destroyed. All remaining tanks typically don't come wandering down until you start inching up the road, whereupon they typically come at you in singles.

Phase 3 - Find enemy HQ
The enemy HQ is on a highly defensible hill to the east. Depending on how long it took to find the HQ, they may have a few tanks accumulated but typically sit a couple there to defend. Do not rush getting to the HQ if it would leave your rear exposed because you haven't captured all territories to the south of it. Boxing them in by planting anti-infantry at the ramps will stop the pioneer rushes, but it won't stop the large clumps of soldier reinforcements that come from off-map.

Once you have found the HQ, put a mortar on the southeast side of the hill, where there is an opening in the bushes. Also put an Armoured Car nearby to engage infantry coming down the ramp, and hide an Engineer team nearby to repair your Armoured Car.
On the southwest corner of that hill are two AT guns. Snipe them, then put an armoured car at the ramp there as well, although there will typically be no enemies coming that way.

On the north side is a road. Where the road goes off map, the Axis receives off-map reinforcements that assemble there with an officer and make rushes. It is not clear what stops them from moving (possibly putting an armoured car at the courtyard where you rescued Dog Company) but in any case, killing the officer makes the remaining forces flee.
You can put an Armored Car at the northwest corner of the hill, on the road, to intercept the enemy there, but tanks could come from the HQ as well as from further north where the Axis have another Panzer garage.
You can also have a sniper team here to kill the infantry, but there are mortars in the northeast corner of the hill that can apparently spot your sniper even if it is out of sight range of the enemy.

To tackle the HQ, send one tank (each followed by an Engineer team) up both of the sloping paths to the courtyard, but not too far. Kill whatever tanks you can then pull back, repair, and repeat until there are no tanks. Then you can charge up with tanks to destroy their tank production and other buildings.

The enemy HQ will pump out Pioneers at an incredible rate when it is the only building left. As the HQ becomes damaged, they will switch to focusing on defending it, then on repairing it. Keep pounding it until it is levelled. It will remain on the map as enemy territory but you will no longer be able to damage it. In any case, once all the buildings there are destroyed, the HQ threat is effectively over and you should see no more Pioneers and machine gun teams.

Phase 4 - Clear mines, finish capturing the map
Remember to NOT capture the strategic point where the road forks. Capture everything else. For mine-clearing, you can use a tank but they are vulnerable as front-line scouts since they can't turn as quickly away from AT guns or other dangers.
Instead, advance with Engineers equipped with a mine detector. Just go slowly. As soon as enough road is clear to access the fields on either side, scout ahead with snipers in the field (which have no mines) before proceeding with your Engineers again. Watch out for enemy rushes (see below) and be prepared to retreat your Snipers and Engineers. When the enemy rushes, watch out for AT guns and get rid of them with light armour racing to flank and machine gun it, or with snipers.

At the end of each road are periodic endless respawns of Axis, including an Officer. Sometimes instead of a horde of soldiers, there is an AT gun. If you kill the officer, they will Retreat. Plant some anti-infantry armour on the sides of the road (not in front where they could get shot by an AT gun immediately) there to handle them without having to babysit too much. Always have a look when they show up to see if it is an AT gun.

Phase 5 - Call the Red Ball Express
When the map is completely clear, take the strategic point where the road forks. That will trigger a convoy from the south that you have to protect. Since you have wiped the map, just wait for the convoy to reach the north end of the map.

Company of Heroes - Normandy Campaign - Mission 4 - Carentan Counterattack

For a list of all our Company of Heroes Anthology walkthroughs, click here.

This tough mission has endlessly respawning enemies. They respawn only when you kill a squad, however. But to get the Bronze Medal, you will need to kill fast.

If you are playing this map by continuing from Mission 3, at the start of Mission 4, the game will make an AutoSave for this mission. Do NOT erase that. If you do and you restart Mission 4, you will have only basic troops scripted for this mission instead of units held over from Mission 3 plus any changes and preparations to the map made there.

The enemy is scripted to come from three approaches, but first and mainly from the north (the red enemy quadrant). They will drift over the capture any strategic points before going to the bridges.

Prior to v2.602, enemies could also magically appear in the east side of the city.

If you mined every inch of territory you could capture in Chapter 3, on Expert Difficulty they should be able to just reach you in the Church GQ, without you having to fight them or defend anything. AND you will also get the Bronze Medal.

Some Veteran units (like Snipers) in this mission can be called in Mission 5, but costs more resources.

Company of Heroes - Normandy Campaign - Mission 3 - Carentan

For a list of all our Company of Heroes Anthology walkthroughs, click here.

This is basically a tutorial mission to teach you about buildings, so it's possible to use up units like water here. However, in our walkthrough (Expert difficulty), we'll try to keep our squads alive to retain their veterancy. Until we get the HQ to make snipers, this means some pretty tricky tactical moves in the early mission.

All units at the end of this mission carry over to Mission 4.

Phase 1 - Destroy the Café
  • First, save your exposed units: Grab the squad currently exchanging fire and move them southeast, toward the map edge. They should shortly be out of sight of the Cafe no longer under fire. Watch for another squad coming up from the south and stop them before they also come under fire.
  • Next, move the 4-man squad hiding behind the building, to just east of the Café. They will be out of the enemy firing arc and completely safe. Satchel charge the café. The squad will start to move and could wander back into the fire zone. Grab the and put them back in cover next to, but not too close to, the cafe (so they won't get caught in the blast.
    • You must destroy the café with a satchel charge ( not just kill the enemy inside with gunfire or grenades) in order to show you that a destroyed building also kills all squads inside.
    • If the light machinegun that drops is not accessible (in rare cases it will fall "inside" the rubble), restart the mission.
    • The wall next to the café can be blown up with a satchel charge. If you move past the cafe there, the game will play the mission objectives as if you had destroyed the casino.
Phase 2 - Secure the Church territory

Cover plays a HUGE part here, as well as choosing when and how to rush a building. The main thing here is NOT to exchange fire with squads in buildings since they have more squads than you do, and even if you are in a building, not only will it take forever but the Axis will eventually kill most of your men. Buildings are for digging in and being hard to dislodge, not really for fighting. When a squad is inside a building, it can fire heavy weapons but it cannot use any skills such as throwing grenades.

After blowing the Café, blow the wall next to it with a satchel charge to access the lane while being out of the fire arc of the building near the arch leading to the alley.

1 - wall near the cafe

Use the light machinegun (LMG) from the Café to out-gun the defenders and clear the plaza. Clear the enemy-occupied building near the archway.

2 - not in alley building arc

Hide behind the Café ruins to spot for your LMG and clear even more of the plaza.

3 - spot for LMG

Satchel charge the house on the south that is near a low stone wall.

Whenever you approach the building you blew up in step 3, Grenadiers will exit the two buildings controlling the courtyard. Draw them out to be gunned by your LMG and your units in the café corner. When they are close, retreat your squad that is near the bombed building. Repeat until enemy units refuse to come out.

4 - draw enemies from the buildings

Your squad behind the wall will always try to advance some of their units in front of the wall. Grab the squad and have them go to cover behind the wall again in order to make them stay in hard cover. You can build additional lengths of wall to keep them penned in, or at least to take longer before they move out, and that way buy you time to grab them and keep them inside.
Also build a short wall to help your bait squad get behind cover more quickly.

Now that you have hopefully thinned out the health and numbers of the enemies in the buildings, blow them both with satchel charges.
First, rush a squad to the L-shaped wall for cover and as a distraction. When they are close, move another squad to the west building. Do not circle around the bombed building from the left as you will probably come under fire from the HMG outside the church.

5a - go for low wall hard cover as distraction

Rush the initial two squads to satchel both buildings, using their Fire Up ability. Meanwhile, since the first squad is headed toward the sandbags in front of the east building, advance your third squad to the low wall for cover and fire support.

5b - rush both buildings and satchel

As soon as a satchel charge is thrown, Retreat that squad. When the second satchel charge is thrown, Retreat all remaining squads. They are basically all out in the open and need to get out instead of a slow retreat. With luck, both buildings will be emptied and you won't need to repeat this.

5c - call Retreat on all units while buildings blow

Build a sandbag wall for your LMG and stand behind one of the bombed buildings to spot the plaza for it. Ideally your LMG is too far for the units in the plaza to shoot back. Look around a bit to make sure the plaza is clear, but you need to be careful of the squads in the building across the street (which has a longer sight range because they are in a building) because they can suppress with their HMG.

6 - spot for LMG to clear plaza

To satchel charge the building across the street, go into the alley. Hug the north side wall. When your squad is close (near the Ammo point), either use Fire Up to dash to the right of the building. There, they will be out of the fire arc of the building, but sill vulnerable to squads coming around the building from the next street over. You can provide a distraction by briefly occupying the building directly across from the building you want to satchel charge.
Pay attention to the mortar team in the big plaza. It will shell anyone in the alley. When you hear it fire, unless you're feeling lucky, you need to move your forces in the alley.

7 - approach on alley building outside fire arc

7a - stop automatic retreat to stay safe from building fire


Look for opportunities to draw more enemies from the courtyard and church without exposing your squads to the HMG at the church. Note that we did not put two squads in the same building. This was because there were apparently not enough windows for all units to fire out of the side facing the courtyard, and the LMG squad did not fire its machine gun.

8 - draw more enemies without exposure to church HMG

8b - draw soldiers from church

When no more troops can be drawn, we have no choice but to rush the church from the HMG flank. Direct one unit to satchel charge the church, one to satchel charge the HMG position (more area to get more troops blasted), one unit to either satchel charge or grenade the church. When bombs are away for a squad, Retreat the squad.

9 - rush satchel church and HMG, then Retreat

Hug the north building and pop out to drop a grenade on the AT gun instead of trying to out-shoot them. Don't destroy it so we can use the AT gun later in mission 4.

10 - grenade AT gun to capture

Establish defensive line of sandbags and mines around the church before occupying it.

Phase 3 - Defend the Church
If you have 16/30 population from retaining your full initial attack force, you can build 2 snipers. Put 1x6 and 1x4 paratroopers into the church, and when the snipers are ready, put them immediately in the church for a total of 12/12 population.
Shortly after the briefing about capturing the Town Hall, you will hear the metallic sound of barbed wire. That is the Germans cutting a hole to bring in their counterattack, from the NE and NW, which were both initially blocked with barbed wire. A third unit could be at the alley strategic point.
On the outside, move your remaining squad to cover by going to the side opposite the enemy. That should also encourage them to come closer and walk into any mines you have laid. If not, the snipers should eventually clear the two enemy squads before you lose any units.

Phase 4 - Secure Map
Build a third sniper and fill out your paratroopers to 6/6, for a total of 30/30 population. The snipers can spot for each other and advance quite quickly. When areas are safe, move the paratroopers in to collect German Panzershreks. Leave heavy machineguns for green troops in Mission 4.

The barbed wire to the northeast might be hard to satchel charge without exposing yourself to the sniper in the building behind, so you can leave that for later or grab an AT gun now with one of your paratrooper squads (splitting the squad as a result) and shell a section of it. Or go to the alley near the Cafe Normandin and satchel charge a section of wall to get to the east side. There are two snipers in buildings there, so you need to be careful to get the first shot with your own snipers while not exposing your sniper to enemy fire after they take the shot.
Remember that units in buildings can generally only (but not always) be shot at if they are in an opening (e.g., a window) that is facing the shooter.

If you enter the Town Hall plaza area, a motorcycle will move to your position even if the unit entering is camouflaged. You can, however, approach the motorcycles from outside the Town Hall plaza area and they will not move unless you are visible to them. You can then snipe them safely.

As you clear the Town Hall plaza, enemy units will spawn to flee to the northeast, possibly triggering mines you have laid. When you empty the Town Hall of enemy troops, a vehicle will spawn somewhere in the city on the east side, and endlessly re-spawning troops will also appear.
  • The enemy vehicle can be instantly destroyed if you have extensively mined the east side and it spawns right on the mines, or drives through a minefield. You will otherwise have to use mortars or the AT gun.
  • These troops begin in the Plaza, but if destroyed will respawn at the northwest bridge instantly and move toward any units that are closest to them anywhere in the Town Hall territory, whether they are camouflaged or not.
  • As soon as you destroy the vehicle, all enemy units flee and the mission ends, so don't trigger the appearance of the vehicle until you are ready.
Phase 5 - Prepare for Mission 4
Prior to Mission 4, mine every inch of every territory you own and set barbed wire around your strategic points to draw German engineers (Pioneers) there to be destroyed by your mines when they rush to cut the barbed wire. Before the enemy can reach your Church HQ, the 15 minutes should be up, Able Company reinforcements should have reached town, and you should have gotten the Bronze Medal for inflicting enemy casualties.

When you have finished your preparations, destroy the Axis vehicle to win the mission.
At the start of Mission 4, the game will make an AutoSave for the mission. Do NOT erase that. If you do and you restart Mission 4, you will have only basic troops and none of the troops or preparations you made in Mission 3.

Company of Heroes - Normandy Campaign - Mission 2 - Vierville

For a list of all our Company of Heroes Anthology walkthroughs, click here.

This is basically a tutorial mission since you get so much manpower.
  • The only non-replaceable unit is the single Sniper you can get in the north territory.
  • You will get messages about squads already attacking AT guns. They will die if you do not pause the game and move them. If you play in real-time, you will probably lose a lot of them, if not the entire squad. Move them out of sight range of the enemy, such as behind some thick foliage.
  • Whenever you capture a strategic point, expect enemies to magically appear out of nowhere (typically from behind bushes) and head to your position.
  • AA gun crews will not attack you.
Phase 1 - Follow Instructions until the Road Patrol is clear
Note that if you drop the paratroopers at the location indicated by the mission, if they aren't wildly off, you can grenade the machine gun nest immediately. If not, you get more cover for your approach if you drop them behind the barn or on the road and behind the wall. While they are coming, keep an eye on your initial squads as they have a tendency to drift from behind cover and get pinned by HMG fire.

Phase 2 - AT Gun
To increase your sight range, grab one of the AT guns from the southeast corner territory. AT guns have a longer sight range than heavy machine guns. There is also a pile of ammunition here that you can take to increase your munitions if you didn't blow it up during the fight to take this area.

Phase 3 - Get a mortar
Move up the east side of the map until you find a plane wreck. Grab at least 1 mortar there to help you clear machine-gun nests and to fight enemy mortars. There are only a couple of enemy mortar teams, but they are a pain to take down without snipers. Mortars are the second-best option (see our tips on taking out mortars).

Phase 4 - Get a sniper
From the north edge, head west until capturing a strategic point causes a sniper to emerge and join you. Arrange your force to hold ground while the sniper goes ahead to assassinate mortar crews and machine-gun crews. Whenever possible, spot for the sniper using other units that are close to the enemy but with thick foliage in between to obscure them.

Phase 5 - Mine the road
Before capturing the last AA gun, extensively mine the northeast corner so that you can stop the incoming enemy convoy without a lot of frantic work.

Company of Heroes - Normandy Campaign - Mission 1 - Omaha Beach

For a list of all our Company of Heroes Anthology walkthroughs, click here.

This is basically a tutorial mission since you get unlimited squads. The only non-replaceable unit is the single Sniper you must rescue from the beach.

Phase 1 - Reach the Shingle
Ignore the instruction to use cover and just grab as many units as you can, and click anywhere along the shingle line. This hurries up this part of the mission and also works better in terms of overall casualty count, since there are only so many heavy machine guns and cannons, none of which you can take out at this time. They can't shoot at everyone at the same time, but they can target the unit you are moving. By moving everyone at once, you are guaranteed to save most of them since no one is a static target and most of them are not under fire.

For the sniper, camouflage him and move him, away from other troops clumps since those are more likely to draw artillery.

For the engineer squad, you may have to use cover because you need that specific squad to make it to the shingle.

Once at the shingle, units are immune to damage. The enemy placements are also immune to damage and cannot be sniped.

Phase 2 - Bunker
Ignore the instructions to grenade the heavy machineguns. Instead, move your troops back and to cover. Wait for the sniper to come under your command and have him behind a squad of riflemen taking cover in the crater where the barbed wire was blown. Snipe all the heavy machine gun nests and all enemies, then walk up to the bunker and blow it. You cannot snipe the enemies inside the bunker.

Do not let your sniper take too much (or any) damage. You cannot get a replacement, and he is invaluable for giving you an easy time on this mission, unless you just like the carnage of throwing squads at the enemy and winning with brute force.

Phase 3 - Eastern territory
There is a squad at the shingle to the southwest. You can move them over for extra bodies to help you.
Take your time here to get units under cover and preferably supporting each other. Control your sniper to take out priority targets such as heavy machine gun nests. Do not advance too far against HMG nests as squads can get outflanked easily. Instead, use them from behind hard cover to spot for your sniper.
Control the trench with a squad with a light machine gun, and once that is secured, blow the bunker.

Phase 4 - Clear beach
Before destroying both cannons, kill all enemies on the map and destroy all bunkers to clear the beach for the Expert Infantryman medal.

Company of Heroes - General Tips

For a list of all our Company of Heroes Anthology walkthroughs, click here.

Overall, remember that an army is about the projection of firepower. Each type of unit protects another unit that has longer range and/or firepower. Front line units do NOT have to win the war or even do most of the fighting. They are there to hold ground. This is especially important on Expert Difficulty, where the enemy has more health than you do, so they will always be able to outfight you if you both have equal circumstances. The difference is tactics.

Scouting cannot be underestimated. Knowing both where the enemy is, and is NOT, is key. The latter is very hard in Company of Heroes because the missions are frequently scripted with "cheats" where the enemy will literally just magically pop out of nowhere, even in areas you had previously cleared, and even when nowhere close to a map border (and cannot thus be called "reinforcements from off map"). You see an excessive amount of this in Normandy Mission 2.

Some map elements, such as buildings and thick rows of bushes can let both you and the enemy see each other. However, only enemy mortars will try to attack you. The others do not generally move. Sometimes you can be close enough to throw a grenade or satchel charge over the barrier. This generally works for bushes, but not for buildings -- You can still throw an explosive, but it will detonate inside the building.

Try to scout with Sniper pairs: One ahead always in camouflage, the other farther behind, taking the shots. This way, you can both scout and advance. If you have only one Sniper, you can still clear enemy clumps:
  • Back off until you see only one unit.
  • Shoot that unit.
  • Move the sniper immediately away so that you won't be spotted by the other enemy units wandering in the direction of the dead unit.
This does not work when the enemy is in a building because units inside buildings have a longer line of sight, longer than the sight range of your sniper on the ground.
Do not move your sniper into a building, because that just lets the enemy know a hostile is inside the building.
The main danger in this approach is actually nothing you can control: Enemies may spawn in response. Again, you see this a lot in Normandy Mission 2, where approaching a Strategic Point, capturing a Strategic Point, or killing all units at a Strategic Point will almost always cause a squad to spawn and move to its location.

AT Guns
Anti-Tank guns have a longer sight range than infantry, and therefore can sight for your heavy machine guns, allowing them to set up safely and start firing. When you have nothing else, you can use an AT gun to spot. There is no "Hold Fire" option, so to prevent them from firing, you will need to deploy them so that there are no enemies in their arc of fire.

Enemy Units

Killing two members of a 3-unit squad typically causes the third unit to automatically die.

Heavy Machineguns
Typically these are deployed on the map without their gun ready to fire. That way, the enemy can set up their gun quickly and facing the correct direction. In order to flank a HMG unit, you therefore need to have at least two squads, and even if you don't lose any units, you will lose health on that team, putting you closer tol losing members.
Use snipers or mortars against them. If you use a sniper and cannot flank them, always shoot the gunner first. This will force another member of the 3-man squad to take control of the gun, meaning only the third member can shoot at you with their regular firearm.

Whenever you attack, you are briefly visible. When mortars attack, they are also briefly visible, even if not normally so because you do not have a unit in range to see them. When a unit is hit, they are also briefly visible in this way.
  • For the enemy, this means that if you are in range, it will attack as soon as you expose yourself. Move your squad immediately. You can do this to do mortar-versus-mortar.attacks, as the enemy mortar will typically NOT move except to change firing direction or if it is moving closer.
  • For you, this means that as soon as you hear the distinctive launching sound, you can pause the game and immediately scan the map for the enemy mortar.
Use snipers or mortars to deal with enemy mortars. If you use a squad of soldiers, rush them. The main danger here is if the area near the mortar crew is not clear and has troops or maybe a HMG team.

Company of Heroes, Opposing Fronts, Tales of Valor - Walkthroughs

This post lists all our walkthroughs for Company of Heroes Anthology campaigns and missions -- played on Expert Difficulty -- and will be updated with new links as new walkthroughs are available.

General Tips

Normandy Campaign
Mission 1 - Omaha Beach
Mission 2 - Vierville
Mission 3 - Carentan
Mission 4 - Carentan Counterattack
Mission 5 - Montebourg
Mission 6 - Cherbourg
Mission 7 - Sottevast
Mission 8 - St. Fromond
Mission 9 - Hill 192
Mission 10 - St. Lo
Mission 11 - Hebecrevon
Mission 12 - Mortain Mission 13 - Mortain Counterattack
Mission 14 - Autry
Mission 15 - Chambois

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Company of Heroes: Anti-Tank Guns are not dangerous to infantry

AT guns are not dangerous to infantry

When not shooting at vehicles, an anti-tank gun in Company of Heroes can actually fire outside of its normal fire arc (the cone you see when setting deployment direction). In this picture, we took probably over a hundred shots trying to destroy the sandbag defenses and the single Grenadier standing there. Also notice how the shots have also very carefully missed the fences.

If you don't have a mortar and need to use an AT gun, you may want to consider using the console command setsimrate(n), where n defaults to 8. A higher value basically puts the game on fast-forward.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Company of Heroes: Carentan Counterattack

Company of Heroes: Normandy Campaign, Mission 4: Carentan Counterattack
Expert Difficulty, Bronze Medal

Cheesy easy way to win AND get the Bronze Medal for 350 casualty points:
  1. Mine every square inch of every territory you control before ending Mission 3. Use the console command setsimrate to accelerate the game so you can get resources quickly in order to do this.
  2. At the start of Mission 4, withdraw all units to the Church and wait for Able Company. You don't have a to lift a finger to defend the church as the Axis can't get even close.
  • It appears that they have some units magically appear in the east side even if they haven't made it across the bridges. Whether the Axis can see the waterfront or not, it also seems that at 9 minutes left, they artillery strike the waterfront; and at 6 minutes left they demolish the Town Hall with a second artillery strike.
  • Notice that some of the Axis infantry are remarkably hardy against your mines and chew up a lot of them while randomly crawling about Pinned or running around on the map. You can see this in action around 6 minutes into the video when they rush for a strategic point. Therefore it is important to plant mines everywhere, even off-road.
  • Having barbed wire around the strategic points also seems to attract Pioneers (Axis engineers). This may be the reason that they don't appear later on the bridges with mine detectors.
  • Note that the game in this video footage has been accelerated with the setsimrate console command, and runs approximately twice as fast.

Republic Commando Console / Cheats

To access the console in Star Wars: Republic Commando, press ~ (tilde), then enter a console code.
You can also hotkey a console code by editing the keybindings in the user.ini file. For many codes, this is probably the most convenient way to use them. Here are some of the more useful codes:
  • TheMatulaakLives
    • "God mode" -- Immune to damage. This command toggles it on and off.
    • You can also edit the DamageModifierEasyDamageModifierMediumDamageModifierHard, values in user.ini
  • SmiteEvil
    • All enemies presently in view will disappear.
    • Great for the final mission in the Geonosis chapter if you can't finish it within the 5-minute time limit.
  • PlayersOnly
    • Freezes the game except for the player character.
    • Any countdowns also halt.
    • No actions can be taken other than moving -- e.g., You cannot plant an explosive or splice a console.
  • slomo 0.3 | OnRelease slomo 1
    • Bind this to a key in the user.ini file.
    • When you are holding the key down, the game slows down to 30% normal speed, including the player character. This is a sort of "bullet time" where you can more comfortably aim and have 100% accuracy, just like your Delta Squad podmates.
    • Also helps in melee where enemies tend to move too quickly to track.
    • When you release the key, the game goes back to normal speed.
  • slomo 3 | OnRelease slomo 1
    • Bind this to a key in the user.ini file.
    • When you are holding the key down, the game speeds up to 300% normal speed. Helpful when running around collecting ammo and getting bacta before exiting a level.
Other interesting codes:
  • ghost: Fly and Walk through everything
  • loaded: All explosives, full ammo, and almost all of the secondary weapons appear below you.
  • fly: Gives you the ability to fly. Toggle it off with walk
  • fierfek: Gives you ammo.
  • Invisible #: Makes you invisible. 1 for on, 0 for off
  • Revive: Revive self.
Also look in the DevUser.ini file for codes to try. Not all codes will work (e.g., God does not seem to do anything).