Changing a new Company of Heroes game from a WW2 setting to anything else would be an unrecoverable mistake.
Marketing is everything.
CoH2: Eastern Front was not a mistake, it was spearheaded by bad marketing, Relic confirmation bias/logical fallacies and bad writing/narrative design that did not have the same "Band of Brothers" vibe
is the CoH2 announcer from BoB so the Relic audio team had the right ideas to make a faithful sequel.
Rather than learning from mistakes Relic threw the baby out with the bathwater and went back to the Western front.
Making a faithful WW2 sequel is not the same as making a "spin-off sequel" or entire new IP.
DoW2, Homeworld 2 and CoH2 are legitimate good games, but bad sequels.
DoW2:The Last Stand
(cooperative survival mode) arguably had the potential to become a new IP which Relic worked on as "Project Atlas".
DoW2 was more a spin-off sequel to CoH1 than a faithful sequel to DoW1 fans.
(Barking Dog Studios) and Homeworld: Deserts of Kharak
(Blackbird Interactive studio) are good spin-off sequels not created by Relic.
I played many games with HW1 vets and I know many that was not happy with HW2, so this shit has been going on for many years.
Imagine if BBI had called Homeworld Deserts of Kharak for HW3.
I believe that was one of the reasons Sega Europe wanted the DoW
+CoH surveys to determine how fragmented the fan base was.
The danger of calling "spin-off sequels" DoW3 or CoH3 is that it creates false fan expectations.
Fans in general, don't do well with big changes.
Quote former Relic, Communications Manager:
@mrjade @12ozMouse Hey guys, I'm trying to be as transparent as I can here but I can't reveal new info on upcoming projects. What I can tell you is that both are being developed very differently for Relic and there is a lot of positive change afoot specifically around community consultation, user research, and early playtesting.
Compare this to the two recent job announcements (production
) that are interconnected with Relic Game Director building a brand new team/project.
Live and breathe Relic’s “Player First” development philosophy, collaborating with players to create world-class strategy games
INTERNAL BRAND MANAGER:
Do you believe that marketing for games is not only about creating hype for products but also providing the design team with critical player-driven insights?
Lead the strategic brand management of our titles from inception through to live operations to long-term brand health & consumer engagement
Make sound business recommendations to the Executive Producer and the SEGA publishing group to enhance agreed marketing programs
Guide SEGA’s media briefing and planning process through close collaboration with SEGA’s Marketing team
CoH spin-off sequels and entire new IP have room for change and target new audiences.
If Relic/Sega expand the franchise to Cold War or Sci-fy (Star Wars/Halo) then they have to get the name right along with good marketing + community feedback.
But if Relic/Sega mess up then CoH could end up like DoW with a fragmented fan base. So yes, I do agree it's a risky move.