05 June 2019
'It feels and plays differently than most other games out there'
World War II real-time strategy game Company of Heroes is coming to the tabletop courtesy of a new board game.
The Company of Heroes board game is the second project from Bad Crow Studios, the creators of the inventive tabletop title Mech Command RTS, which played out in real time and included built-in lasers pointers in the base of its miniatures to help calculate line-of-sight.
Company of Heroes will include both a real-time mode true to its RTS roots on PC, as well as a turn-based mode for those looking for a little more time to consider their moves.
As in the PC game, there’s a strong focus on positioning squads around the battlefield, taking resource points to gain manpower, munitions and fuel, which can then be spent to purchase improved equipment, unlock buildings, upgrade abilities and deploy more units.
The largely dice-less combat system takes into account systems for cover and flanking, with units able to occupy buildings on the hex-grid map board – eye-catching 3D models are being sold as part of a terrain set.
Each side of the conflict – the four armies in the base set include the US, Germany, UK and USSR – has a HQ and roster of selectable commanders, each with individual skills and units.
Bad Crow describes Company of Heroes as “an interesting hybrid of strategy, unit tactics and resource management; just like the video games”, and says that while the board game will predictably go down best with existing fans of the PC game, those new to the series should still find something fresh in its mix.
“This is a cross between tactical skirmish games and economy-based resource management games so it feels and plays differently than most other games out there,” the studio wrote in the Kickstarter campaign. “While the CoH board game shares some common elements with skirmish games and tabletop miniatures games, (players are maneuvering units around on a map after all), it has such a large focus on securing, collecting and spending resources that the end experience is quite different!”
The board game plays in around an hour to 90 minutes, and is said to be “simpler (and less time consuming) than Squad Leader, Tide of Iron and Bolt Action” while featuring “more tactical depth than titles like Memoir ‘44”.
“The unit interactions and abilities approach the degree found in games like Heroes of Normandie and Conflict of Heroes but has a more streamlined (and therefore lighter) combat system,” Bad Crow wrote.
As you might expect from a high-profile Kickstarter, the game comes with a healthy offering of plastic miniatures. The core set includes 150 infantry figures and 32 vehicles in 1:120 scale. Further figures are available as stretch goals and add-ons, including an expansion that adds a dedicated solo mode with an AI opponent and a co-op campaign.
The crowdfunding campaign has quickly doubled its £80,000 target on Kickstarter ahead of a planned release next May. The game is currently said to be “90 to 95% complete”.