'We'll see an expansion' for Dawn of War 3 says Relic

Nothing set in stone, but devs leaning towards free gameplay updates and some paid cosmetics.

Ahead of its launch next month, both Frazer Brown and Tom have dived deep into Dawn of War 3's Eldar faction and multiplayer mode respectively. We now know its system requirements and we've heard its developer wax lyrical about how its units and heroes will present themselves on the battlefield. But what about Relic Entertainment and Sega's post-launch plans—what can we expect from the Space Marines, Eldar, Orks and beyond in the weeks and months which follow April 27?

Long term, Relic's Phil Boulle tells PC Gamer that we can expect expansions and while nothing is set in stone just yet, the game director reckons DoW's third outing could follow a similar path as its 2009 predecessor.

"This is all me projecting into the future," says Boulle. "I would say we've had a long history of success with big meaty expansions that add new races or factions and add new ways to play the game, more campaign content, etc. So that's definitely something we're going to revisit. We'll see an expansion of some sort for Dawn of War 3.

"In terms of content between that, we don't have anything concrete, but where we're leaning is to keep the gameplay content essentially free—have it unlock with the skulls you earn just by playing. And then potentially have various cosmetic items that would be for sale. But again, nothing is set in stone at this point."

With Dawn of War 3 cutting the most expansive and ambitious shape of the series thus far, adding factions is more work now than it's ever been. Boulle explains that building elites means building an army, which in turn means building a certain number of rich heroes to go alongside them. Armies are bigger, and units are more varied than ever before. 

"And that does make them quite a production to build, and that's one of the reasons that wrapping them into a big thematic expansion that not only releases the army into a multiplayer space, but showcases story to talk about them, and allows us to add features and so on—that's the approach for us," Boulle adds. "Obviously the elites gives us an avenue to add content in smaller chunks, and exactly how we'll do that is still something we're discussing, but we're leaning towards updating with new gameplay content as just part of the living game, and possibly updating with cosmetic stuff that people could pay for if they're interested." 

Dawn of War 3 is due April 27, 2017. The video above has the devs discussing the game's environments, while the following short is its most recent Masters of War cinematic.