Company Of Heroes Review

Company Of Heroes is an action-packed, military real-time strategy game released in 2006. The game was developed by Relic Entertainment and published by THQ. This Company Of Heroes review will take a peek inside the mechanics and gameplay of Company Of Heroes to see what made this game such a popular hit.

So without further delay, let me start by giving you some information about the game:

Release Date2006
PublisherTHQ
DeveloperRelic
Entertainment
Game ModesSingle Player, Multi Player
Lan PlayYes
Single Player
Campaign
Yes
Online PlayYes
PlatformWindows, OS
AwardsSatellite
Award for
outstanding
strategy game, VGX Award for best PC Game
Company Of Heroes CD Cover
Company Of Heroes Cover
MinimumRecommended
CPU: Pentium 4/Athlon XPCPU: Pentium 4/Athlon XP or better
CPU Speed: 1.8GHzCPU Speed: 3GHz
RAM: 512MBRAM: 1GB
OS: Windows XPOS: Windows XP or Vista
Video Card: Nvidia GeForce 3 or an ATI Radeon 8500Video Card: Nvidia GeForce 6800 or better
Total Video RAM: 64MBTotal Video RAM: 256MB
3D: Yes3D: Yes
Free Disk Space: 5GBFree Disk Space: 6.5GB

Presentation

90%

Marvelous

Fun Factor

88%

Great Multiplayer Fun

Overall Game Score

89%

A Must Play

Company Of Heroes is an action-packed, military real-time strategy game released in 2006. The game was developed by Relic Entertainment and published by THQ. This Company Of Heroes review will take a peek inside the mechanics and gameplay of Company Of Heroes to see what made this game such a popular hit. 

Introduction

Company Of Heroes reminded me of the movie : Saving Private Ryan that was released in 1998 and so every time I think of the movie, there is this urge to play Company of Heroes. 🙂

The graphics has aged well and the combination of sound and visual effects grabs your attention and immerses you in the game play. In other words: The experience of the sound, effects and animation is pretty exciting. The explosions are especially epic.

It is not just the effects that I like, but also the detail and animation of the characters. I am also quite fond of the interface that was something different but also: it simply works for me.

When playing the campaign there are some nice introduction video clips, some cut scenes when completing certain objectives and another video clip at the end of a mission. I enjoyed these quite a bit as it sets the scene, tells the story and you sometimes find yourself spontaneously utter some words aloud without you even realizing it. Words like: “Bring it on!” or “Eat this!”

Company Of Heroes Vierville

When your soldiers are fired upon, they duck and dive for cover which gives them that extra bit of personality. They also have no problem spitting out the odd four-letter word. I do not care much for bad language and sadly there is no way of turning it off. It was not distracting at first as I haven’t quite noticed it until playing the Germans in a skirmish match for the first time and I thought I heard a sudden swear word thinking: “Wait…did he just…was that a curse word?” So there is some more personality for you and possibly the ‘M’-rating for Mature. Not to say that violence is not a contributing factor but I would rather pin it to the language.

I enjoyed the campaign and appreciate the fact that you do not start every mission with a base and headquarters.

Relic Entertainment brought so many fresh ideas to the table and the recipe was a huge success. One such fresh idea was the way resources are gathered coupled with sectors.

With all that said, let us have a closer look at Company Of Heroes and the actual game play:

Gathering Resources

Like most strategy games, you need to collect resources in order for you to build structures, recruit soldiers and vehicles, research better tech and so forth.

Unlike most strategy games, resources are collected by capturing certain points and controlling more of the map. I cannot help but wonder if the resource gathering idea was founded from Heroes Of Might And Magic 3 which works much the same minus the linking of sectors to your base.

There are three resources to collect:

  1. Manpower
  2. Munitions
  3. Fuel

Manpower:

Manpower is your primary resource and is used for deploying squads and vehicles. The rate at which Manpower increases depends on the amount of territory sectors you control. Manpower will already start to auto-increase with a start-up base with a headquarters building present.

The first number next to the Manpower symbol represents your current Manpower points. The second number indicates how many Manpower points you receive per minute. This is true for Munitions and Fuel as well.

Munitions:

Munitions is used for upgrading units and unlocking special abilities. To collect munitions, you will need to capture munition sectors.

Fuel:

No fuel, no heavy vehicles. Fuel is also used for base structures and global upgrades. You need to capture fuel sectors in order for you to collect this resource.

Company Of heroes Tank

Captured resource sectors need to be ‘connected’ to your Headquarters / base in order for you to start collecting points from it. That means that you must own all the sectors between you and the resource. Your territory will be outlined in blue in the mini-map, which can also be expanded to a bigger overview of the map which makes it easy to identify the sector connections.

The way resource collection is explained here is most relevant to playing a multiplayer – or skirmish match but is also true for some Campaign missions.

The rate at which the Fuel – or Munitions resource increases at a sector can be further increased by building an observation post around the captured point. The observation post also provides some protection against the enemy simply capturing the sector outright; since the observation post will need to be destroyed before the sector can be captured.

The observation post can be erected by the American Riflemen and Engineers but limited to the engineers only for the Germans.

Campaign Game

I enjoyed the campaign much more than I thought I would; since I always prefer a multiplayer or co-op game to a single player campaign. This makes me a bit biased but overall I enjoyed most of the missions and especially the first mission for the brilliant intro video and game play that just seamlessly flowed together.

There are 15 missions in total where you lead either Able – or Fox company to victory from taking Omaha beach to fighting the German 7th Army in Chambois.

Company Of Heroes

My breath was taken away by the intro video of the first mission and particularly the beautiful water textures and realistic waves. I truly enjoyed the cut-scenes as well when reaching some objectives. 

The Company Of Heroes campaign gets challenging fast and there is a real sense of accomplishment when you walk out victorious or when you are awarded a medal. (There are a total of 16 medals.) Medals are achieved by completing bonus missions.

Gameplay

Apart from the beautiful detailed maps and models; the destruction of it is equally ‘pretty’. It is pretty in the sense of: ‘Pretty awesome!’. Most of the objects on the map can be destroyed and it is quite the spectacle to see the utter destruction of the battle afterwards.

As mentioned before: visually, the explosions are a joy to watch as dust plumes, debris and smoke fills the bombarded area. Bodies caught in an explosion will fly about or get shredded by artillery fire. Buildings catch fire, crumbles and even looses some bricks when a tank knocks against a corner.

By now you get it, visuals are quite good and worth switching to ‘Ultra quality’ settings. What good will it all be if the sound for an explosion was simply *BLIP*. Well, thankfully the sound is awesome as well.

The sound is loud and wonderful from whispers during nighttime missions, panicking vehicle drivers to the accurate sounds of gun-fire from the large array of weapons that can be present on the battlefield. So crank up the volume and re-live what a WWII battle would sound like right there in your room.

Company of Heroes Explosion

Tanks, like the German Sherman, are formidable and infantry units will feel almost defenseless against one. Flanking the tank and hitting it from behind or at the sides with some bombs may keep them alive. Mines and anti-tank units are quite effective against this threat.

In Company Of Heroes, you do not select individual units, but rather a squad ranging from 3 to 6 men depending on the unit type. Individual soldiers can perish in a squad but you can also replace units lost in exchange for resources which is great in certain instances for pushing forward and keeping the game flowing.

Buildings can be occupied by your troops which makes them a difficult target. Snipers, tanks and flame thrower units are best suited to handle such situations. It does not end there: Troops can also build defenses like tank traps, barbed wire, trenches and sand sacks. Your soldiers will last much longer taking cover behind some sand bags than left in the open.

The amount of protection your units get from different forms of cover are indicated by the colored dots when moving them to cover. Red will indicate no cover, yellow is partial cover while green represents full cover.

You can research new abilities for your squads as well. The Engineers can be equipped with flamethrowers or given mine sweeping capabilities while the Riflemen can throw stickey bombs, hand grenades or be upgraded to Browning rifles as example.

Company Of Heroes Flame Thrower

On top of it all, your soldiers can gain veterancy which makes them superior in combat. It is therefore a good idea not to have your whole squad wiped out. When you are in a tight spot, use the retreat button and your soldiers will flee to HQ.

You also gain experience points for capturing sectors and doing combat. With enough experience you will gain Command points. These points can be spent in the Command Tree that gives you even more abilities like artillery support, faster tank production, an overhead plane that shows unexplored areas of the map and much more.

There are three control points to capture on the map in a multiplayer or skirmish game and controlling the center point is key in winning the game. Victory conditions work on a point basis where each team starts with a set amount of points chosen before the game starts. The team that controls less victory control points than the other team, will start losing points. When your points reach zero, you have lost. Alternatively you only need to destroy all the enemy structures to win the game.

There is not much negative comment I can give when it comes to the presentation and quality of the game or even the overall game experience. But no game is perfect (Except for the ones I say it is – Only kidding) and I will get to that.

Playing a multiplayer game is where the most fun is to be had. Company of Heroes is a fast paced, action packed game where every second counts. Playing a skirmish match against the computer on normal difficulty was super difficult for me in the beginning. Granted I am not awesome at all games and a fast paced game like this is not my strong suite. Lots of practice on easy difficulty is recommended.

This game can be played over a local area network (LAN) and supports up to 8 players. Computer controlled opponents can also join which I am happy about. This is also where the game lost its perfect score. Let me explain:

Cons

There are no real game mode options in Company Of Heroes and you always end up playing an Allied vs Axis game. I hoped for a few more options. The other downside is that all ally players soldiers are the same color on the map – yellow. This makes it a bit difficult to identify your units.

Buy Company Of Heroes

You can buy Company of heroes from:

  1. Company Of Heroes G2A
  2. Company Of Heroes Steam
  3. Company Of Heroes Amazon

Company Of Heroes Manual

Conclusion

If you are into tactical war games, Company Of Heroes is a must play. Unlike turned based games of the same genre (Panzer General and the Total War series comes to mind) this is a real-time strategy game which is fast paced that does not leave much time to think your next move through which can be a bit overwhelming when playing against seasoned players.

Overall, Company Of Heroes is a beautiful game, pretty much bug free and thus well coded, lots of fun and challenging. It is difficult for me to see that this heart-pounding action game will leave you bored quickly. Instead, you may just slip a few four-lettered words when being attacked from all sides or running into a convoy of tanks with explosions leaving craters all around your troops.

Please let me know in the comments below about your experience with Company Of Heroes or any questions you may have and thank you for reading my Company of Heroes review.

Pros
  1. Great sound
  2. Spectacular explosions
  3. Fast pace action
  4. Brilliant fun
Cons

There are no real game mode options in Company Of Heroes and you always end up playing an Allied vs Axis game. I hoped for a few more options. The other downside is that all ally players soldiers are the same color on the map - yellow. This makes it a bit difficult to identify your units.

Review Overview
3.90
Overall Score

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