[Altered Melee] W40k Vanguard Strike

Level 13
Apr 3, 2018
An Altered Melee map inspired by Warhammer 40'000, particularly the Dawn of War series.
Vanguard Strike


Nids vs CSM.pngEldar base.pngHorma rows.png guardians in cover.jpg

The map has multiple scripted systems altering the way Warcraft 3 is played.



Extra Systems




Working AI - the map is playable in both multiplayer and single player.

Mods, allowing to choose different victory conditions
- Normal: destroy all enemy buildings
- Survival: withstand 10 waves of Tyranids
- Control area: take and hold strategic points on the map
- Regicide: kill the enemy commander

Squad control system
Allows to control a squad of units as if it was just one unit.
Each squad can also purchase additional options, such as sergeants, special weapons like flamers, or squad-wise upgrades, like Marks of Chaos or Tyranid biomorphs.

Horma rows.png Nurgle.jpg

Each squad may purchase additional members anywhere on the map, but only while unengaged.
If a squad attacks or is attacked by an enemy, they temporarily lose the ability to reinforce.

Squads that seem to be losing a fight lose morale, which can be restored using different abilities, or when you get them out of combat.
Once morale reaches 0, the squad morale breaks and their attacks weaken.
After several seconds, broken squads will run away to the base.
Chosen in melee.jpg

Close combat engagements
Some units may switch between shooting and close combat attacks.
When a squad is attacked by an enemy melee unit, they may not fire and are forced to fight in close combat.
In addition, attacks from behind slow down squads, making it harder to run away from melee.
Kabalites kicking asses.jpg

Camera rotation
You may rotate the camera during the game using arrow keys, reset by pressing Escape.

Cover system
While a unit is within a crater, or behind a stone wall or building, it takes 40% less ranged damage.
Some weapons like flamers or Eradicator's main gun ignore this modifier.

Flanking system
When attacking from behind or flanking, units deal bonus damage.
Flanking increases damage by 25%.
Backstabbing increases damage by 40%.

Heavy weapons and Suppression
Some infantry weapons are Heavy, requiring a setup time after moving before they are able to fire.
These weapons suppress enemy squads, slowing down their movement by 50%.

Physics system
Blasts from heavy ordinance, like a tank's main gun, scatter troops they hit.
Some abilities also have this effect.

Character protection
Some units, including heroes, squad leaders and specialists, are protected by other friendly squad members. Damage to them is spread out, stopping them from being easily focused down.

Deep Strike
Some units will instantly arrive at the rally point when trained.
They will be stunned for 5 seconds while entering the battlefield.

Detachment limit system
Each unit falls under one of the three roles:
  • Core Troops (0-6)
  • Mobile Units (0-4)
  • Fire Support (0-3)
Each player can only have a limited number of units from each of these roles.
For example, as an Imperial Guard player, you can only have up to 3 Leman Russes and Basilisks at once.

Vehicle secondary weapons
Vehicles have more than one weapon.
For example, a Leman Russ tank has 3 additional Heavy bolters in addition to its main gun.
The sponsons fire at separate targets, and may fire while the vehicle is moving.
You may use the "Target sponsons" ability to specify a target for your tank's secondary weapons.

Vehicle damage system
When a vehicle takes a hard hit, like from an anti-tank missile, it suffers adverse effects.
It may get temporarily slowed down or stunned, be unable to fire its secondary weapons, or explode, damaging all nearby units.

Damage resistance
Vehicles and buildings take reduced damage from all attacks, by a flat amount.
  • Most vehicles have between 10 and 30 damage resistance
  • Generators have -3, Turrets -8, Most buildings have -20 and HQ buildings -32

Weak small arms fire or close combat attacks will often have no effect on a vehicle.
Flanking or backstabbing a vehicle is more effective, as it increases the damage before the flat damage reduction.
For example, an attack with 30 damage would have no effect on a Leman Russ (damage resistance -30).
But if you attacked it's rear armor, the damage increases by 40% to 42 damage, resulting in 12 damage after the resistance.

There are 3 main resources in the game.

Produced by generators over time. Each player has a limited number of generators they can build.
Generators are fragile and destroying them will hinder the enemy economy.
When a generator is destroyed, it blows up, damaging nearby units.
Most races use power as the primary resource to buy and reinforce their units.

When dealing or taking damage, players gain this resource.
The attacker generates more Escalation than the one who takes damage.
Capturing a strategic point on the map instantly grants +50 escalation, and increases amount of escalation you gain from damage by 10% until it is captured by the enemy.
Escalation is typically used for research or buying advanced units and vehicles.
It is also used to build more generators.

Population cap
The food resource from Warcraft 3 is still used to limit the number of units per player.
The difference is that it starts at 80 food and is typically not increased by building farms.
A squad takes up a fixed amount of population cap, no matter how many members it has.

Map uses many custom models, credits for these to:
  • IronMaiden
  • Grey Knight
  • Mechanical Man
  • Burning_Dragoon5
  • wraith
  • The_Silent
  • donut3.5
  • HerrDave
  • Ujimasa Hojo

  • split into two races: Craftworlds and Drukhari
  • some models fixed/improved
  • added Vaul's Wrath support platform (turret, can reposition like a treant)
  • added Avatar of Khaine, Wraithguard/blades, Swooping hawks
  • Guardians split into Defenders and Storm guardians with different options, defenders get heavy weapons and lasblasters, storms get flamers/fusion guns and power swords
  • Farseer Fortune is now autocast and absorbs twice as much
  • Warp Spiders health and attack speed buffed
  • Power from Pain changed
  • added Poison ability to most weapons
  • added Wracks, Hellions, Wyches, Grotesques, Raider
  • DP second skill improved, instead of healing after jump now creates a barrier that blows up after 5 seconds
  • DP now has an option to purchase a mark of Chaos
  • certain unit sizes and costs changed towards smaller squads
  • marks now cost escalation instead of power
  • marks may no longer be swapped to other marks
  • mutations are now up to 3 per squad, icons consolidated in a spellbook, Temporal distortion replaced with Venomous
  • mutations are gained faster, elite squads penalty to mutation rate reduced
  • added 2 researches in Tainted Artifact
  • Painboy no longer replaces a Nob/Flash git, is now a bonus squad member
  • Tankbustas rokkit barrage reworked
Imperial guard
- Vanquisher Leman Russ range increased, damage reduced, has a crit chance against vehicles only

- Tactical marines melee attack speed reduced

  • morale system adjustments, ai improvements, bug fixes
  • melee attacks from behind now slow the target for -40% move speed, making it harder to run away from melee
  • changed Fleshbane ability, now scales with attack damage instead of a flat % of target's health
  • Regicide mode now increases all hero stats by +25
  • new secondary mod "-plenty" increasing resource income
  • vehicle damage reworked

Work in Progress

Race progress

Current WIP

Race Progress
  • Imperial guard: ~100% done
  • Space marines: ~100% done
  • Tyranids: ~95% done
  • Necrons: 90% done
  • Chaos: 85% done
  • Orks: 80% done
  • Eldar: 70% done
  • Dark Eldar: 50% done

  • Dark Eldar - "power from pain" buffs, models for buildings and vehicles, scourges
  • Chaos - Obliterators
  • Eldar - windriders, rangers, better avatar of khaine
  • Necrons - deathmarks, triarch stalker
  • Orks - meganobz to replace nob squad, trukk, gun wagon, buggy
  • Tyranids - model for brood nest
  • Different game mode, additional commands
  • Bug fixes, typos, etc.


  • Vanguard Strike v1.17.w3x
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Level 3
Dec 20, 2012
Cool updates biridius! Personally, I don't mind mind the map being heavy since its rather immersion breaking seeing default models being used so please continue using custom models :grin:

Also Grey Knight's Tzeentch Pack have Rhino, Predator Tank, and Whirl Wind. Perhaps you can use that? He also have other cool models like the Emperor of Mankind!
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I wanted to make a map like this month ago out of passion for Warhammer 40k, however I concluded that it wouldn't be better than the current Dawn of War games, which has one of the best unit animation I've ever seen.
Well it's gonna be hard if you're limited to a map size of 8MB, I mean you're going to need a lot of assets. Are you asking for help on models? If yes, why not make a post here Requests
I used to be very into DoW; downloaded your map, and played Imperium on Normal and Survival modes.

My feedback:

The systems were fun and had potential. Not exactly like DoW, but hard to be given Wc3's engine limitations. I would suggest a couple of things:
  1. The reinforcing/squad upgrades mechanic wasn't too intuitive, coming from a guy who's played DoW and also made a map with reinforcing squads before (if you'd like to check it out, it's my map Realm of Carnage). I couldn't glean a cooldown from it, couldn't figure out from a glance if the numbers on the items meant number of reinforcements available, or number currently in my squad.
  2. I think the arrow-key camera system is entirely unnecessary; at least let the player use their mouse scroll like normal
  3. Perhaps offer a individual-unit control mode? Wc3's pathing is quite awful, and sometimes I just wanted to micro individual units just a little bit. I know this isn't in DoW, but I think it's one benefit that a DoW adaptation in Wc3 could use.
The art was decent; you used basically what was best available + some rips where no substitutes existed.

The gameplay was fun and a bit nostalgic for me. However, I felt it was way too slow... I had all 5 Generators up, but energy trickled in at a snail's pace.
  • I found it absurd that an Imperial Guard regiment - a basic troop type - cost 1,000 as well. Earning 15 energy per second (that's a player's max earning rate), it takes 28.5 seconds for a player to have the resources needed to make a faction's basic unit (ignoring the training time as well).
  • That would be like, in default Wc3, a Footman costing 840 gold (3 expansions, harvesting 10 gold/second for 28 seconds)
  • My suggestion: double Generators' energy generation, halve the cost of units. This would speed up gameplay a lot.
Overall, the map was good fun. Its systems were a highlight, but pace was way too slow for me.
Level 13
Apr 3, 2018
What should I do about the terrain? I have nearly 0 skill in terraining...

Also thinking how to mitigate the fragility of eldar short range squads like warp spiders or guardians. I don't want them to have high staying power, but they should be able to run in, hit hard and run away (instead they tend to die or lose morale before accomplishing anything). Maybe some kind of temporary invulnerability and speed boost.
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Level 13
Apr 3, 2018
Warp spiders can already blink, they just get shot or tied up very fast. There's generally little reason to not just go full gunline with prisms and reapers instead of short-range stuff, even with the 0-3 heavy support limit on them... Idk if invulnerability would be too powerful.

Added Marks of Chaos for Daemon prince.

I feel like "Escalation" resource is too long and should be renamed to "Conflict" . There should be a fast way to do this through find-replace in map archive files hopefully...
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Level 13
Apr 3, 2018
Maybe I'll just keep it the way it is, I have already buffed warp spiders and farseer's shield and it worked in survival with zero long range support.
Now I'm trying to implement "open-topped transports", for Drukhari Raiders, Necron Ghost Arks, maybe an Ork Trukk in the future. The passengers are displayed on the vehicle and shoot out of it, even while moving, in the same way as the vehicle's secondary weapons.
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