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Company of Heroes 2 is changing a lot with its new British Forces expansion Sept. 3

Samit Sarkar (he/him) is Polygon’s deputy managing editor. He has more than 15 years of experience covering video games, movies, television, and technology.

Company of Heroes 2's next expansion, The British Forces, will bring the British Army into the real-time strategy game as a playable faction, and its debut will come with some major changes to the game, publisher Sega announced today.

The British Forces will add eight new multiplayer maps, 15 units and six commanders to Company of Heroes 2. Players have two different choices in the expansion's tech tree, and the breakdown is based on the Brits' actual military strategy in World War II. The 'anvil' approach focuses on gun emplacements to build strong defensive positions, while the 'hammer' approach is more aggressive, with speedy and powerful attacking units.

"The British Army has been one of the most requested factions since we first announced Company of Heroes 2 three years ago," said Greg Wilson, executive producer at Relic Entertainment, in a press release. "The British were a major player in WWII and we are excited to bring their unique makeup and overall tactical doctrine to the Company of Heroes 2 battlefield. Finally, every player — whether they are new to the franchise or a long standing fan — can play The British Forces and have a compelling multiplayer experience with an army that can certainly go toe-to-toe with every other faction in the game."

Alongside The British Forces' launch in September, Company of Heroes 2 developer Relic Entertainment will release "a major design upgrade" for the main game and all its existing expansions, according to Sega. The upgrade is intended to improve the balance of the game's five factions. Furthermore, Relic will deliver improvements to animations and graphics in an effort to increase authenticity.

The British Forces will be available Sept. 3 on Windows PC for $12.99 in North America, £9.99 in the U.K. and €12.99 in Europe. Like the Western Front Armies add-ons from June 2014, The British Forces is a stand-alone expansion — you don't have to own Company of Heroes 2 in order to play it. And new customers will be able to play all existing Company of Heroes 2 maps and factions in multiplayer.

Company of Heroes 2: The British Forces pre-orders will go live on Steam at 1 p.m. EDT today. Steam pre-order customers will receive a 10 percent discount, while owners of any Company of Heroes 2 product will receive a 20 percent discount. For more on The British Forces, check out the trailer and screenshots above.

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