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Retribution is the second expansion to the Warhammer 40,000 real-time strategy computer game, Dawn of War II. It was released in March 1, 2011 with six single player campaigns, a new multiplayer faction, improved "The Last Stand" mode and a new online service. The Dawn of War II multiplayer scene has migrated to Retribution from the old matchmaking system.
Dawn of War II: Retribution offers a campaign for every race, including the Imperial Guard. The campaign takes place across Sub-sector Aurelia, which appeared in the previous two Dawn of War II games. The worlds include the jungle-covered Feral World Typhon Primaris, the Desert World Calderis, and the Hive World Meridian from Dawn of War II; the Ice World Aurelia and the derelict Space Hulk Judgment of Carrion from Chaos Rising; and the Dead World of Cyrene, mentioned in the original Dawn of War as having been subjected to Exterminatus (complete sterilisation of all life on a planet corrupted by Chaos or alien influences) by Blood Ravens Captain Gabriel Angelos.
In Dawn of War II - Retribution, a player could be one of the six available races in the single player campaign, which included: the Tyranids of a Hive Fleet Leviathan splinter fleet, the Space Marines of the Blood Ravens Chapter, the Chaos Space Marines of the Black Legion, the Eldar of Craftworld Alaitoc, Ork Freebooterz and the Imperial Guard.
Dawn of War II: Retribution takes place ten Terran years after the events of Chaos Rising. Sub-sector Aurelia is now suffering from conflict between Ork pirates called the Freebooterz led by Kaptin Bluddflagg to pillage the sub-sector, the arrival of the Eldar of Craftworld Alaitoc led by Autarch Kayleth in response to a prophecy that has led them to Aurelia to recover an ancient artefact, a Tyranid Hive Lord who seeks to restore the link of a splinter fleet of Hive Fleet Leviathan] with the Hive Mind, the Space Marines of the Blood Ravens Chapter led by Captain Apollo Diomedes who hope to cleanse the sub-sector of all Chaos taint as well as investigate the loyalties of their Chapter Master, Azariah Kyras, who may have been corrupted by Chaos, the return to Aurelia of the Chaos Space Marines of the Black Legion led by Eliphas the Inheritor on a quest to fulfill his promise to Abaddon the Despoiler to annihilate the Blood Ravens, and the newly arrived Imperial Guard of the 8th Cadian Regiment led by Lord General Castor, who have been tasked with performing an Exterminatus action under Inquisitor Adrastia of the Ordo Hereticus if her investigations reveal that the sub-sector is hopelessly lost to the influence of Chaos and xenos. These events may have been caused by Gabriel Angelos' actions (in the original Dawn of War game) when he destroyed the Maledictum, a Chaos artefact containing the bound essence of a Greater Daemon of Khorne, with the Daemonhammer God-Splitter.
The player's character arrives on Typhon Primaris to engage an opposing faction and defeat its leader. (Space Marines vs. Chaos, Eldar vs. Orks, and Imperial Guard vs. Tyranids). It is learned that the Imperial Inquisition has deemed the sub-sector beyond redemption, and will be arriving soon to carry out an Exterminatus action on all the inhabitable worlds in the region. Later, the faction leader is given the objective to eliminate Azariah Kyras who intends to use the impending Exterminatus as a genocidal sacrifice to Khorne and ascend to daemonhood as a Daemon Prince. The motivation varies depending on the player's faction, for example the Space Marines, Imperial Guard and Eldar wish to oppose Chaos, their ancient Archenemy; the warlike Orks simply want a good fight and to thump the strongest foes they can find; the Tyranid splinter fleet wishes to overrun the sub-sector and summon a new Hive Fleet to consume all the biomass; the Chaos Space Marine faction are Kyras' rivals for the attention of Khorne and wish to surpass him in the Blood God's favour. Regardless, it is deemed by the player's faction that Kyras must die. The player quickly attempts to secure a means of transport off Typhon, escaping a local cult along the way.
Arriving on Calderis, the player character fights against Kyras' Chaos-corrupted Blood Ravens Space Marines, operating under orders to purge the planet. After destroying a Warp portal on Aurelia, the player's faction learns of an attack on Meridian ordered by Kyras and arrives there killing the Traitor Guardsmen and uncovering a transmission from Kyras revealing his location on Typhon.
The player's faction returns to Typhon Primaris to confront Kyras himself, only to be ambushed by Eldar from Craftworld Biel-Tan. Wary of a ritual they are performing, the player's faction kills the Eldar there. Following this, Kyras reveals that the Eldar ritual was preventing the Imperial Inquisition fleet from arriving at the sub-sector. The Inquisition fleet arrives, beginning an Exterminatus action on Typhon Primaris. The player's faction escapes Typhon before the Exterminatus is complete. A Cyclonic Torpedo reduces Typhon's surface to ash.
Finding themselves on the Space Hulk known as the Judgment of Carrion, the player's faction recovers, and finds new determination to stop Kyras. It is deduced that the Renegade Chapter Master and his followers are hiding on Cyrene, as that Dead World already underwent Exterminatus decades ago, and therefore the Inquisition will not travel there to perform another Exterminatus action. On Cyrene, the player's faction launches an attack against a joint alliance of Chaos Space Marines, corrupted Imperial Guardsmen and Traitor Blood Ravens by using their most powerful unit against them. Kyras begins to ascend to daemonhood during the course of the battle. Gabriel and his 3rd Company launch an attack on Kyras' forces while Gabriel's own command unit confronts the emergent Daemon Prince himself; however, they are defeated by Kyras and his newfound power as a servant of the Blood God. The player's faction then launches their own attack, ultimately successfully killing Kyras.
After Kyras' death, the ending of the game will depend on which race the single player chose:
- Chaos - Eliphas allows the Exterminatus campaign of the Imperial Guard to continue, thus sacrificing the sub-sector's population to the Blood God Khorne. In return he is granted daemonhood by the Blood God, usurping Kyras' place and transforming into a Daemon Prince.
- Eldar - Ronahn recovers the Spirit Stone containing the spirit of his sister, the Farseer Taldeer, and decides to return to Craftworld Ulthwé with her.
- Imperial Guard - If victorious, Inquisitor Adrastia returns to the Inquisition to suspend the Exterminatus on Sub-sector Aurelia, by presenting Kyras' Psychic Hood as proof that the threat has ended, while Lord General Castor and Sergeant Major Merrick commend each other for their exemplary actions in backhanded fashion.
- Orks - Inquisitor Adrastia attempts to renege on the deal between her and Kaptin Bluddflagg by carrying out an assassination attempt on the Greenskin corsair. Unfortunately, Kaptin Bluddflagg catches her off guard and takes her hat, which he wanted as his preferred payment in their deal to unite against the sub-sector's other threats. Following his victory over the Inquisitor, he claims the Space Hulk Judgment of Carrion as his new Kroozer, and uses it to leave the sub-sector in pursuit of new conquests.
- Space Marines - Captain Diomedes contacts Inquisitor Adrastia after the purge of Kyras and his followers and asks her to halt the Exterminatus. The Blood Ravens Chapter is then purged of any remaining Chaos taint and Gabriel Angelos, after being revived from the brink of death and rebuilt with bionics, is appointed as the new Chapter Master of the Blood Ravens. (Canon Ending)
- Tyranids - The Hive Tyrant's psychic strength summons a Hive Fleet to Aurelia that launches a surprise attack and consumes the entire sub-sector, resulting in a 94% casualty rate for the Imperial Guard forces and the complete annihilation of the Blood Ravens Chapter, who refused to retreat from their home.
The canonical ending of Dawn of War II - Retribution is the same as the Space Marine ending. The evidence for this comes from the Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine video game. In Space Marine the main character gains assistance from a squad of Blood Ravens Tactical Marines who state they are under orders from their new Chapter Master. This infers that the Chapter has survived and reformed under Gabriel Angelos' leadership as depicted in the Space Marine ending for Retribution.
On September 15, 2010 Relic Entertainment announced that Retribution would be dropping the Games for Windows - LIVE multiplayer platform in favour of using Steamworks as its primary and only platform. As a result of this, the campaigns do not import or continue directly from Dawn of War II and Dawn of War II: Chaos Rising and the new multiplayer platform does not communicate with the old LIVE platform. This makes the game entirely stand-alone with all the races included (unlike Chaos Rising, which required the original Dawn of War II to use the original four races in multiplayer). Plot-wise, two playable characters (Cyrus and Tarkus) have been carried over from the original campaigns. A new multiplayer matchmaking service was developed for Retribution. The addition of Steamworks also allows inviting Steam friends directly to multiplayer matches as well as free-to-play multiplayer weekends and a much faster patching process.
There were speculations that the new playable race would be the Imperial Guard and/or the Inquisition, due to the Inquisition's triple-lined "I" symbol used in the word "Retribution" in the game trailer; in addition, the expansion's wishlist icon in the Steam system features a female Inquisitor of the Ordo Hereticus. On December 21, 2010, the German PC gaming magazine Gamestar revealed the new race would be the Imperial Guard.
A multiplayer beta of the game was launched on Steam on February 1, 2011 and ended on February 25.
- Dawn of War II (Novel) by Chris Roberson
- Dawn of War II: Retribution (PC Game)
- Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine (Video Game)