The Imperial Guard, shooting whatever is behind that threatening rock.
But enough about the single-player stuff, let’s move on to what really matters. As with Dawn of War 2 and Chaos Rising, the campaign supports drop-in/drop-out co-op, with the second player taking control of two of the Hero/Honor Guard units. As in its predecessors, this is great fun, and communicating strategies on the fly makes up for the more generic campaign. Both players share the same requisition, energy and population cap, so be sure to inform your co-op partner before you start recruiting squads or taking field upgrades. Seeing how your partner levels the units under their control is always interesting, and often opens up strategies you might not use if left to your own devices.
Both previous games had Games of Windows Live support, though Retribution has scrapped it in favor of deeper Steam integration. Bringing friends into games is slightly less of a hassle, mostly due to the fact you don’t run the risk of finding a friend on their Xbox 360 and pestering them to switch over to their PC to join you. Your stats and campaign progress are also tracked through Steam (though curiously, playing any race in the campaign appears to mark their campaign progress as complete, regardless of whether you have or not), as are your delicious, delicious achievements.
Speaking of achievements, several (but not all!) are specifically flagged as being earnable only by the host in co-op, which is sad, though similar to previous entries in the series. Instead, if you play a certain number of missions in co-op as the guest, you will earn wargear to transfer back to your own playthrough (complete with cute co-op themed names) of whatever campaign you were on, which is a nice touch.