Not to be confused with Humanity's Last Stand.
The Last Stand is a multiplayer mode for Dawn of War 2. It was also released by itself as The Last Standalone.
In the Last Stand, you and two other players take control of Warhammer 40,000 characters, fighting wave after wave of AI attackers in an enclosed arena. The mechanics are basically the same as standard Dawn of War II, except you only control one unit (you can't even control summoned AI minions). There are twenty waves of increasing difficulty; each is themed around a particular force, so you won't fight Eldar and Orks at the same time, for example. If you die, your teammates must revive you; if all of you die, the game ends. You get a score at the end of the game, with modifiers for time, number of rounds without dying, control of the the two capture points on each map, and how many enemies you killed, as well as a bonus for completing all twenty rounds.
There's also a metagame at work; each character has a variety of wargear, which is unlocked by playing the game (although this can become something of a grind). For the most part, each character has a number of interesting builds, and each character plays so differently that it's worth trying them all out.
Although it's the "other" multiplayer mode, Last Stand is so much better than the original multiplayer that it's earned comparisons to Defense of the Ancients, a spinoff mod for Warcraft III that was so well-designed it launched an entire genre. Whereas Last Stand was tiny in Chaos Rising, it came into its own in Retribution, with the addition of a new map and tons of new wargear and the removal of a large number of incredibly annoying bugs. Eventually, it was launched as a standalone game, called the Last Standalone, although Relic didn't bother developing it further; they moved on to Company of Heroes 2, but that wasn't released until their parent company (THQ) fell apart and they were bought by SEGA (yes, that Sega).
Tell Me More!
The first map, Bloodied Colosseum throws you primarily against Eldar, Space Marines, Tyranids, and Orks - I.E. the four cardinal races. You will also periodically see a smattering of Imperial Guard units. At wave 16, the game throws, as a boss wave, 3 health-buffed clones of your heroes, who have AI scripts that allow them to revive one another and generally turn the match into a pass-or-fail session of how quickly your team can deliver a series of explosions directly on top of them and orbital strike them until the squad can see hell. At wave 20 these return, along with Araghast the Pillager.
The second map, Anvil of Khorne, is widely-considered the better of the two maps, though it's far harder for newcomers to handle. It throws literally every race at the team, as well as bosses Superheavies throughout (so you will need to fight the Swarmlord, Battlewagon, Land Raider, Baneblade, et al). The final wave also drops Gabriel Angelos, some squads of Termies and a Land Raider or two for fair measure. Interestingly, this is orders of magnitude easier than Bloodied Coliseum's reviving bosses with a capped-out team and generally more fun.
You all play hero units - there's one of each race, two of whom are classified as paid DLC. Interestingly, though each hero has about 2-3 "common" builds you'll see for them, there's enough customization and tactical choices that you can potentially come up with about a dozen viable builds for each. To further help you out, /tg/ was nice enough to get these little guides together for your use:
- Eldar Farseer
- Ork Mekboy
- Space Marine Captain
- Tyranid Hive Tyrant
- Chaos Sorcerer
- Imperial Lord General
- Tau Shas'O Commander
- Necron Overlord
As you play, your hero of choice gradually levels up, earning new wargear and goodies to play with, including weapons, armor, accessories, and more, which is a major component of what makes the game so addicting - and even better, you can customize your hero's color and emblem using the army painter, for that psychological edge. Each character maxes out at level 20, at which point you have the option to reset to level 1 and earn accessories boosting one's in-game score.
Wise Words of Wisdom
Play with "Grid Key" option enabled (via the game's main options). This will assign your abilities to the QWERTY row and attack stances etc. to the ASDF row of your keyboard. No more broken fingers by alternating between J and Q anymore and no need to look at the keyboard anymore.
THE CAPTURABLE POWER NODES DO NOT BRING EXTRA EXPERIENCE FOR LEVELING UP, THEY ARE SCORE MULTIPLIERS, SO UNLESS YOU ARE A "PRO" AND WANT TO GET A HIGH SCORE OR ARE ACHIEVEMENT HUNTING, DON'T EVEN BOTHER; BEFORE THINKING ABOUT IT YOU NEED TO LEARN TO PLAY AND LEVEL UP YOUR HERO, THE HIGH SCORES WILL COME ALONE BY THEMSELVES ONCE YOU HAVE MASTERED THIS GAME. The one upside is that the AI is programmed to take the points where they can, so simple tactic is capping them towards the end of each wave which will give you valuable breathing space at the beginning of the next.
Also, kills similarly do not give you extra experience, so don't worry about having your kills stolen because you think you'll level up slower. The only thing that determines your XP is what wave you reach in the end.
Far more pressing and important: On Bloodied Colosseum, you can predict from where the doppelgangers are coming from: they almost invariably come from the same corner where the first group of Eldar banshees from wave 9 came from or even earlier at wave 3 where the first pair of guardian squads spawn. Or earlier than that at level 2 where the pair of Hormagaunt squads spawn. On Anvil of Khorne you can predict where the Land Raider will spawn by watching for the spawn point of the last single group of Assault Marines of wave 4 (the walls that open last).
- Big enemies are often less dangerous than the hordes that follow them. Ever heard of a Distraction Carnifex?
- Finish off units that lost life already to prevent them from doing further damage.
- Eldar walkers in Anvil of Khorne should be finished first, after clearing some Banshees.
- Shuriken Platforms need to be finished first in Colosseum, otherwise the Banshees will shred you.
- Warp Spiders should be finished before Banshees if you are fast enough to escape them for a while.
- Assault Marines and Marines with Plasma Guns should be finished first.
- Orks with jump packs should be finished first.
- At least one batch of Storm Troopers should be cleared before Ogryns.
- Attack the same units together with your buddies. The faster you finish off units, the better. Unless your weapons are worthless against these enemies and you have better targets.
- Do not resurrect fallen comrades unless it is really safe to do so: Enemies will deal enough damage to potentially kill you during the resurrection or shortly after it and the resurrected comrade starts so weak and probably with cooldown still in progress so that he is next. If you are the last one standing, do hit and run tactics until the enemies have been thinned enough to help your buddies. Also: Do not finish all enemies off before you rescued your buddies so they can heal up a bit and prepare for the next wave.
Thanks to a helpful member of the Steam Community, you can now enjoy Last Stand: Forgotten Emerald! Disgruntled about your Lord General only being able to pick one turret? Now he can pick three! He can also pick three troop choices and a retinue befitting of his command. Rocket run can be done twice or replaced by artillery barrage.
Sorcerer became the Chaos Champion, who can offer his body to all four gods or Chaos undivided, from choppy to shooty (meaning: you can play pretty fluffy as Khorne Berserker, Plague Marine, Noise Marine, Rubric Marine).
Captain gets a few changes as well (want to be an Apothecary? An Assault Marine? Or a Techmarine keeping his twin linked double lascannon venerable Dreadnought and Tarantula alive while giving energy and feel no pain to others?).
Other heroes were also changed: The Tau commander spawns two drones and got some reworked items.
Bloodied Colosseum is now much more tedious. Tanks and Walkers becomes machine of carnage and reduce your hero to a piece of smoking flesh. If you always dreamed of being overrun in wave 1 by mobs leading four tanks, this one is for you.
Anvil has been replaced by a Space Hulk map which offers buildings, friendly turrets and a bridge.
Check it out here. https://steamcommunity.com/app/56400/discussions/0/618459405722375947/
You need a loader linked in the steam page to start playing and you should backup your local file that saves the equipments to switch between mod and original mode easily and without crashes. New: The search function now works when the mod is active, and the loader opens a steam chat with many people to invite (or you invite someone already in your friends list).