Before I talk about the game I'd like to share my experience with rts games in general. I've played all Dawn of War, Command and Conquer, Starcraft, Age of Empires, Company of Heroes and homeworld games along with others like warcraft, wargame, R.U.S.E. and many total war games. The amount of hours I've played these ranges from a couple to well in the thousands. Because of this I think I have a fairly good feeling for these types of games. With that said I would like to say some things that I think went wrong with this one.
First of all I'd like to point out that I completly understand Relic stopping development to work on Age of Empires. If a ship is sinking and one of the mightiest ships in the rts navy is asking to come aboard you get on. Maybe you could save the ship but no good captain will risk his crew to do that.
Now on to the game. The main factor in my opinion that doesn't make this a real Dawn of War game is not gameplay or the lore not being 100%. It's the lack of factions and the comfirmation that there will always be a lack of them. When I think about Dawn of War I don't think about reading 500 pages of lore, perfect balance or a specific way of playing rts. I think about being able to pick my favourite factions in the universe and waging a massive war where every player is able to pick a different type of xenos with ridiculously unique playstyles that match the way those players want to play the game.
Compared to other Dawn of War games there is no doubt this one is the anomally. It's been made very clear most Dawn of War 1 and 2 fans don't like it. I like to think Dawn of War 3 is made for a different audience in the same way the first two have player bases that are for the most part different from each other. I have yet to see an argument that lists point for point why this game is not even a tiny bit worthy of the title and why It cannot be called a very decent rts at least.
Compared to other rts games this game feels like the vanilla rts despite the in my opinion awesome features like the elites, doctrines (and elites having one of them as well) and power cores. Because when you look at it roughly it has access to the awesome 40k universe and it chooses to use the vanilla factions that you see in a typical fantasy rts. These are the agile elves, the brute orks and the tactical humans. Yes it's 40k but I said look at it roughly. If you take away the graphics and turn turn resource points into gold mines with trees this might as well be a weird warcraft 4.
I only played this 40 hours before development stopped but in the past week I've played 50 more. Now I have to say I think this is a really good game and not everyone will agree with me but I like to call this game a hidden gem covered in negative reviews and balance in my opinion is not nearly as bad as some people claim it to be. I don't think it was the balance, the lore or the game being very experimental that killed it. I'ts that everyone just kind of gave up on the idea that there are people out there who want to play this whether it's good or bad according to others.
You can look at this as a request for more content and it is. I understand age of empires is being developped right now but I don't see any reason this can't be revisited after that. I really feel like this was dropped way to early by develloper and player alike. I'm sure you already had something in the works for necrons that can be finished and released at a later date. I'm not saying releasing it will pay off but no one even gave it a shot to add just one faction when everyone knows how much better the other games did when they got their expansions. You release it and it's no success you still have some evidence for Dawn of War 3 fans to show you tried hard enough. Emphasis on the enough.
If you stayed with me all the way untill the end then I would like to thank you for bearing with me. If anyone still has constructive thoughts on this feel free to share them with me. I'm willing to go more in depth about the things I've said if requested.
I know the Idea I'm suggesting is completely ridiculous but that's what I'm hoping for. I think that this is one of those games where fans still have that same wish but they know isn't going to come true.