THQ Company of Heroes review

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Company of Heroes is a World War II-themed real-time strategy game that puts you in command of US forces in Normandy in 1944. The game has a few details that make it different from most real-time strategy games, though.

It does not reward hiding in your base and amassing forces. You gain resources to trade for troops and buildings by capturing strategic points, which are dotted all over the map. Unless you send out squads to gain and control territory, you'll quickly run out of resources and become overwhelmed by the enemy. This fast-moving action makes for a relentless game, especially since the enemy constantly tries to take back the territory you have gained.

Those who like a well-defended base are well catered for, as your army engineers can build plenty of machine gun nests, landmines and sandbags for defence. One of the more thrilling missions involves defending a town against a seemingly invincible horde of tanks with nothing but a group of paratroopers and some cunning. Unfortunately, some of the excitement dies once the tables are turned and you have to build a base to assault the enemy; simply sending in four tanks usually works.

The graphics in Company of Heroes are stunning. The towns and countryside of Northern France are beautifully rendered, and zooming in on individual troopers shows a level of detail you wouldn't have got in a first-person shooter a few years ago. Unfortunately, you'll need a high-end graphics card to play the game at maximum detail settings.

Although it's not radically different from most RTS games, Company of Heroes has some nice touches that make it feel fresh and the graphics are incredible.

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