Tag Archives: Design

Fixing the Oberkommando West in Company of Heroes 2

Currently there are a lot of people who are not happy with the current state of balance in Company of Heroes 2.  There are some quite valid arguments on why, specifically, the OKW (Oberkommando West) needs to have their late game potential reduced.  As proof from my latest game play, this can be a very valid statement.  Also valid is the need to help solve some of the OKW’s other glaring problems.  Without further ado, here is my solution.

First thing is first, the main offender in 4v4 games is the King Tiger tank.  That needs to be moved to a new commander.  If Relic has sense, they make the commander free for all current Western Front owners.  Honestly I think a Schwere Panzer Commander would be fun for the OKW.  This would put the King tiger in the same league as the of the ISU-152, Tiger, and IS-2.

Next OKW needs a reliable way to handle swarms of infantry.  As cute as the kuble wagon is, it has no mid game use.  As nice as Obersoldaten are, you cannot rush them out onto the field.  The trucks take way to long.  So I feel you should be able to upgrade the Volksgrenadiers with an MG34 LMG.  This would give them a good early game punch.  Now the question we ask, will they be too good early game?   Well this will require another adjustment, removal of Sturmpioneers as early game units.  As a first unit, Sturmpioneers are amazingly good, and I don’t want to see them nerfed, just adjusted how they come out.  Beside that, the OKW does not need any engineer unit due to the function of the HQ trucks.  Now poping LMGs with level 1 Volks is pretty powerful.  To help balance it, and to reduce the late game potential of the unit, I replace the current veterancy 1 to unlock the purchase of the MG 34s.  This means that OKW still stays a late game army, but now, assuming a competent player, mid game, they get a bit more potent.

The final big issue for the OKW is its anti tank.  Now that Volksgrenadiers may not always have the panzerfaust, it’s time for a new unit, the SdKfz 251/9.  This is basically a half track with a pak 40.  As a neat feature, and to require a bit more micromanagement for the OKW commander, disallow reloading the unit while moving.  Also while moving, have a rather high penalty for firing on the move.  This will fill a much needed niche and could replace the basically useless Sdkfz 251/20 Half-track w/Infrared Searchlight in the tech tree.  With that said, the IR Half-track is a really neat unit and perhaps (with a small cost decrease) could be moved to where the King Tiger was in the tech tree.  A cool thing about this swap is the removal of requirement of the Mechanized Regiment HQ.  The Battlegroup HQ now become and interesting choice to counter early armor.  Perhaps swaping the Puma fron the Mechanized Regiment and with the SdKfz 251/9, you have some very interesting options with a half track heavy force or a motley collection of weapons.

Building a Company of Heroes 2 Expansion


Tis the season of gaming.  The winter months are too cold to get out and play, so we turn to our computers and warm chairs to provide entertainment.  Lately I’ve been turning to Companies of Heroes 2 by Relic.  With the Western Front/Ardennes Assault expansion out,  I thought I would go over some core concepts that are used to make new expansions in games.

To make an expansion we come up with a concept,  think of features to add to the game, and then implement the features in a fun way. So using this formula, I can now make a concept for new expansion in Company of Heroes 2. The concept I’ve decided to create is over the battles in the Bloody Boot.  This is during the ’44 time frame with the British and Italians.

Now that I have a basic concept, it’s time to come up with some basic features. The core feature I’d like to add is broadening support weapons on a much grander scale.  In WWII, weapons were towed onto the battle field.  I think this could allow the British forces some powerful weapons while sacrificing mobility.  Every army did this, but the Italians had some interesting weapons which were towed and still fire-able.  This procedure is called portee.  While this was used by the Germans and British as well, this fits for our army deigns for the Italians.  A secondary feature I’d like to add to this expansion is to implement an early army for the Axis and a late army for the Allies.

The model of the last expansion was:

  • Add a commander as a preview for existing armies
  • Add playable multiplayer armies
  • Add a campaign

We will keep to the same release cycle.  This means that, with four existing armies, we need four new commanders.  These commanders will show off some of the abilities of the new armies and fill in deficiencies in existing forces.

The next stage of the release will be creating the new armies with the three starting commanders.  These armies need to have weaknesses, strengths, and be fun!

The final stage is adding a campaign to play through.  While we won’t cover the details of the campaign, we can model it after something similar to the Ardennes Assault campaign where you make strategic decisions for fighting up the boot.  We can also add another chapter to the neglected theater of war saga.  The Italians were present during the battle of Stalingrad. This could give an interesting look over the focus of the base game.