Rebirth of the Warhammer Franchise

Rebirth of the Warhammer Franchise

Warhammer, traditionally a tabletop game from Games Workshop however in the past there have been branches out into video games. One that certainly comes to mind is the Dawn of War franchise by THQ, the first being released in 2004 followed up by 3 expansion packs, adding new units, campaigns and factions. However Warhammer games in general hit a dry spot when THQ had to file for bankruptcy. Relic Entertainment, responsible for the Dawn of War games, and acquired by THQ in 2004, was sold to Sega in 2013.

It was then in my opinion where Warhammer games hit a dry spot not many large releases to the scale or excitement factor of Dawn of War. However recently it was shown that Creative Assembly (responsible for the Total War franchise) is hard at work on it’s next game, Warhammer Total War. This has got to be great news as itself, a giant of a games producer and foreknown for making giant battles of thousands of units possible, combined with the fantasy and lore elements of Warhammer is just a match made in heaven.

Creative Assembly has shown multiple teasers and trailers to show off how much they have already done with the battle mechanics of the game. Most recently they showed off the ‘Battle at the Thundering Falls’ which showcased the Dwarf faction of the Warhammer universe. It had Thorgrim Grudgebearer (a dwarf hero) lead his troops against waves of orcs coming from all directions. The showcase demonstrated many of the dwarf units such as ‘Gyrocopters’ a dwarf flying helicopter that can bombard units with grenades from above. As well as ‘Slayers’ crazed dwarf berserkers that don’t hold an ordered formation and are excellent at killing giant monsters such as, well, Giants. This promises to be a juggernaut of a Fantasy Warhammer game (Fantasy meaning not 40K) involving the most ambitious campaign they have set about on. Creative Assembly have also said that it will be a series of 3 games, each one adding more to the map, so most likely each will add more factions, thus promising a future for the game.

Furthermore for the Fantasy Warhammer section, Warhammer End Times: Vermintide is soon to be released on the 23rd of October. The game is focused around the city of ‘Ubersreik’ a city which has been overrun by Skaven (a sort of humanoid giant rat for any non-Warhammer fans). The game is a solo or co-op survival featuring five different heroes: Witch Hunter, Bright Wizard, Dwarf Ranger, Waywatcher and the Empire soldier. The game boasts new lore surrounding the Skaven as Games Workshop have created it for Vermintide. Furthermore it promises to show many places unseen in other Warhammer games. Overall I think this is a brilliant method to show off the swarm characteristics of the Skaven being limitless in numbers and all behaving differently (now if we could just get a version re-skinned as the Tyranids then it’ll be great).

Lastly, (and the one I’m most hyped for) Eternal Crusade, an MMOFPSRPG (one hell of a genre title) being released by Games Workshop and Behaviour Interactive. The game has just gone into it’s first wave of closed beta and already looks excellent, seeming to utilise the general combat style of Space Marine from 2011, however touched up to compensate for multiple players and 4 races. So far confirmed to be playable are Space Marines, Chaos, Eldar and Orks, with Tyranids as an AI race. Each of the playable races will feature multiple variants of the race (chapters, legions, craftworlds and clans) that allows the player to represent the specific chapter they choose (personally I’m looking forward to Dark Angels). The game is also going to allow the player to customise their own guilds, they have also spoken about having guild strike cruisers in an interview.

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