The upcoming Dark Crusade expansion for 2004's acclaimed real-time strategy game Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War is going to add a considerable amount of new content, including a new single-player campaign that will let you try and conquer the planet Kronus your own way. On a strategic map of Kronus, you'll decide where to attack with your army, and then you will resolve those battles in intense real-time combat where you can command the menacing units of Warhammer 40,000 yourself. Dark Crusade will also introduce two new factions to the mix, adding the mysterious necrons and the powerful tau empire, boosting the total number of playable factions to seven. But who are these new factions? Read on for a briefing on what to expect when Dark Crusade ships later this year.
With a name like necron, you might expect that this faction would be an undead one. That's not quite the case. The necrons are a soulless, mechanical race dedicated to waging war against the living to sacrifice their victims to their gods. Like a plague, the necrons swarmed the worlds of the living ages ago until they were finally defeated. However, the surviving necrons locked themselves away on tomb worlds, such as the planet Kronus that's at the heart of the Dark Crusade campaign, to await the return of the living.
Appropriately, the necrons' central base exists under the surface as a vast network of catacombs. The faction is headquartered in the Thur'abis Plateau, and if that territory ever were to fall, the necrons would be defeated in the single-player campaign. Of course, if the necrons can eliminate all the other factions' strongholds, they would conquer the entire planet.
The necron lord is the main hero unit for the faction, and he leads necron forces in battle. As with all other hero units in Dark Crusade, the necron lord can be outfitted in war gear, special weapons, armor, and equipment that is unlocked throughout the course of the campaign. Such war gear can make the necron lord even more powerful and formidable.
Long ago, the planet Kronus was a peaceful world cohabited by both humans and the tau, a faction that believes in spreading the greater good throughout the universe. However, the return of the necrons resulted in many of the tau warriors on Kronus being wiped out and the human Imperium attempting to control the entire planet. As a result, the tau went to war, dispatching a task force from their home world, armed with the high-tech weapons and battle suits that the tau are known for.
The tau stronghold is located in the city of Or'es Tash'n, in the territory of the same name. From here, the tau military commander Sash'o Kais plans to liberate the planet by conquering all enemy stronghold territories. If Or'es Tash'n should fall, however, the tau would be forced to flee the planet. The thought of defeat would be utterly shameful to the tau, who refuse to accept failure.