Strategy game geeks of the world rejoice! Creative Assembly’s latest Total War game, Total War: Warhammer is set to be released for PC on May 24th. Is this a gaming alliance to be reckoned with or a grudge to be born by the fan community? The Das Keyboard blog team investigates.
Like previous Total War games, TWW allows players to lead their chosen faction to glory on the campaign map. Fans can choose from the stubborn, bearded ranks of the Dwarves; the order and cannons of the Empire; the might of the Greenskin horde; and the undying evil of the Vampire Counts. If you pre-purchase the game, you can even play as the corrupt Chaos faction, led by the Chose One of the Chaos Gods himself. Anyone else remember Archaon from the tabletop game?
On the face of things, this seems to be a match made in heaven. Total War and Warhammer cater to the same demographics and have natural synergy with each other. For those who played the tabletop game as kids, controlling legendary lords like Emperor Karl Franz, Grimgor Ironside and Mannfred von Carstein is sure to fill you with nostalgia. Hard-core fans will recognize spells from the Warhammer lore like Wind of Death, Vanhel’s Danse Macabre and Comet of Casandora.
A large amount of content has been released by Creative Assembly via the Total War Youtube channel, as well as through prominent Total War fan channels like Lionheartx10 and Jackie Fish. The engine looks pretty damn awesome. There is footage of a Vargulf smashing down gates, vampires raising the dead and Dwarf slayers taking down monstrous creatures. The artwork is particularly badass, with factions able to refashion cities in their own style after capturing them. That means you can lay a siege to the dwarven city of Karak Norn covered in Orcish graffiti! This adds a degree of authenticity to TWW that was absent in previous Total War games.
So what’s not to love? The fan community has voiced concern that each race is only able to conquer another faction. While it is true that no citizen of the Empire would ever willingly move into a Greenskin camp, this feature detracts somewhat from the map domination that was possible in previous instances of Total War. Given that one of the main pleasures of Medieval Total War was destroying the Scots, the French, and the Danes while playing as England, this is a definite downside, although it is true to Warhammer lore.
Another bone of contention with fans has been Creative Assembly’s slowness in releasing content. The overall release date has been pushed back by a month from April, and the community has only been shown Undead gameplay within the last week or so. In an age that offers gamers a vast range of choice in terms of what they play, Creative Assembly’s behavior has certainly damaged trust, even if it has added to the anticipation surrounding release. On the other hand, surely it’s a good thing if Creative Assembly iron out bugs before release, rather than through hot fixes? The bugginess of vanilla versions of previous Total War games was something that fans strongly disliked.
Overall, we think this looks like a great game. Notwithstanding a couple of gameplay flaws and delayed release timeline, TWW is an authentic reproduction of tabletop Warhammer which will fascinate gamers for years to come.
What do you think of TWW? Let us know in the comments below.