Since we received Steel Division: Normandy ’44 in May of last year, developer Eugen has released two DLC packs called Second Wave and Back to Hell. Just released last week, Back to Hell adds a host of new content as well as the ability to play cooperative multiplayer missions.
A fine hybrid between real time strategy and a realistic wargame, Steel Division quickly became a favorite of mine last year. I played the single player mode first, and sank dozens of hours into learning the intricacies of each division and unit so that I could best use them on the battlefield. Trying to complete scenarios in a multitude of ways only sharpened my understanding and skills, even when I failed at the scenario in question.
Once I had had enough of single player gameplay, I tried my hand at a bit of online competitive multiplayer – which was amazing since my hard work really paid of here and would even rub off on teammates and opponents, from which I learned a few new tricks as well. I think I played the game for about six months straight before finally uninstalling it, which is a long time for me.
Now, Back to Hell has reignited the spark. Featuring a ton of new divisions and units (11 new divisions and close to 60 new units), there are seven battle scenarios to tackle. In single player, I completed the new missions relatively quickly based on my existing knowledge, but things become more interesting in cooperative multiplayer sessions.
To a degree, this already existed (I’ve played plenty of 2 vs 2 in the past), but the format was a bit more “loose” in the base game. Here, historical accuracy dictates that you might not have the resources you would have otherwise picked – you’ll have to work with what you’re given. This is where cooperation becomes crucial, both in terms of having each other’s backs and in learning from the advice and experience that you can offer each other. As you’re restricted in your freedom of which units you field, cooperation is the only key to success.
I’ve had a lot of fun with this so far, and I would recommend checking out the expansion if you’re a fellow Steel Division player – either former or current. It might not be the biggest name out there, but Steel Division is a great strategy title that just got a little better.