The Company of Heroes 3 campaign uses a dynamic map that evolves throughout each run, and a new developer diary explains how different forces and missions fit into that evolution.
Developer Relic Entertainment's latest deep dive focuses on the relationship between the map and the events of the campaign – that is, your campaign. The idea to build the map this way originally came from the Ardennes Assault DLC for Company of Heroes 2, but Relic expanded on it considerably for the third full-fat game in the series.
"The connection between that strategic campaign map and the RTS battles is really the secret sauce, because it's a natural extension of commanding the battlefield," says executive producer David Littman.
Campaign map lead Andrew Deneault stresses the importance of having the right types of forces for each mission. The player and their AI opponent both have access to land, sea, and ground forces, and the strengths and needs of each require different approaches.
"Chiefly, the player has to capture airfields to be able to manage an inventory of aircraft," Deneault says. "It's no good to have bombers and fighters if you don't have somewhere to land and refuel. So in terms of the overall gameplay, land troops, ground troops such as campaign companies and detachments, will have to move inland, capture airfields, before managing inventory, building up inventory, purchasing aircraft, and then deploying them into battle."
Senior campaign map designer Cameron White adds that "one of the navy's primary focuses is defending the supply lines and making sure you've got resources coming in and it's not being harassed by the enemy. And they're also there to do some cool things like beach landings and to transport your companies to engage a mission or land on a beach and do a flanking maneuver."
"The result of the mission coming out affects the way the campaign map is gonna play going forward," White adds, reiterating the replayability Littman describes.
Company of Heroes 3 doesn't have a release date just yet, and its multiplayer pre-alpha ended earlier this month. You can sign up to potentially be included in future builds and test sessions through Relic's website (opens in new tab).
Check out the Company of Heroes 3 PC system requirements.