Hmm: Dark Millennium Online Details? No

By Jim Rossignol on October 13th, 2011 at 4:36 pm.

Purple: it's a colour that means business.
UPDATE: THQ sent this statement to Massively:

It has come to THQ’s attention that some media are reporting that we’ve announced game details and a release date for our upcoming massively multiplayer online project, Warhammer 40,000: Dark Millennium Online. At this time THQ has not officially announced a release date and any reported features are pure speculation. THQ will announce confirmed game features and an official release date at a later time.

Strategy Informer have posted a big old list of information about forthcoming Warhammer 40,000 MMO, Dark Millennium Online. I’m not sure where it’s derived from, since they do not quote a source (presumably everything they know so far from the limited previews and stuff) but presuming it’s genuine and accurate – and we are presuming – it contains a few interesting nuggets, which I’ve highlighted below. I think we were aware of a chunk of this stuff, but things like class details and so on have not previously been available to my brain.

The game is using the Darksiders engine, and will have “gameplay similar to Space Marine”.

If the game really is going to be that action-led then it’s a different kettle of squigs from the “World Of Warcraft with Space Marines” that people are speculating about right now, at least for combat, being a little more action and skill-based. That’s not to say it won’t be totally tied into stats and equipment, because the Darksiders games do that in single player fairly competently.

Relic are helping out.

But not much. I think we can expect them to be helping get the art “right”, or at least in line with what they did with their own games.

“The videos released at the last E3 are fairly accurate to the current state of the art style. Less realistic.”

I like the sound of this. It means the game won’t suffer too much from the realisms, but there’s also the possible negative tradeoff of it being too cartoony. Hopefully “less realistic” means more stylized and as dark as a 40k needs to be.

Classes include “space marine… psyker, techpriest, and assassin.”

These are humans, but it also mentions that there are Eldar, classes including “Scorpion, Avenger, Warlock, Reaper”, which sounds exciting. However it’s also speculating on an “order/destruction” split in the game, with Eldar being the side of order with the Imperium, which could result in canon-breaking Eldar-Space Marine parties. Not sure how that would work. I am totally being a chaos space marine, anyway.

“Will include instanced and open-world PvP.”

I wonder how it’s going to handle that. Presumably it’ll have to be free PvP anywhere that destruction and order can cross paths. It’d be super infuriating to not be able to kill an ork “because he wasn’t flagged for PvP.”

“Third person action, plays like Gears of War/Space Marine mixed together for shooting. Melee is more like Space Marine/Darksiders, with the target lock on.” “…A cover system is implemented. Waist high cover and standing cover.”

This is interesting, if true. It will make it one of the most action-orientated MMOs so far. Lock-on melee isn’t exactly skill-heavy, but it’s in the right sort of direction for me.

“Environments range from snowy mountains, to the innards of a crashed space hulk… from cities destroyed, and orkified, to ancient eldar cities, overgrown with nids… from ancient battlefields, littered with the carcases of Titans and tanks, to a hive city, nostalgic with necromunda…. from the halls of Imperial Cruisers, to tge desecrated throne rooms of Chaos.”

Mmm.

“Hero classes are possible, unlocked once you get a character high enough level.
o Imperium: Grey Knight
o Chaos: Chaos Sorcerer
o Ork: ‘Ard boy or Weird boy
o Eldar: Farseer”

This and a bunch of other elements suggest that they’re really playing to the familiar MMO gallery here. It’s going to be grindy, there’s no escaping that, but it will be interesting to see how the other elements come together, and whether it will be able to deliver a “world” for us to inhabit, or whether it will just be themeparky. Time will tell.

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78 Comments »

  1. Hoaxfish says:

    In the future there is only arbitrary groupings of race for PvP purposes

    • Danarchist says:

      It seriously needs to have 3 factions minimum. If you just have 2 then one will be inevitably larger on launch day, causing massive forum crying which will push people smart enough to research an mmo before buying it on day one to join the “dominant faction”. Seriously did they learn nothing from warhammer online? The game would have been much MUCH more fun if there was a third faction and I thought they figured that out eventually.

    • Tuco says:

      @Danarchist:

      Yes. I wonder why no one, not even Mythic itself, seems able to learn from what Dark Age of Camelot did better than anyone else.
      A three factions (or even more?) PVP is the magic formula to avoid most of the population balance issues.

    • Joshua says:

      And in the game.

    • bill says:

      I still insist there is no 40k beyond Rogue Trader – and Rogue Trader allowed arbitrary groupings of races such as marines and eldar. It is therefore allowed.

      But why is that space marine wearing a wedding dress?? That would never have been allowed in Rouge Trader!

  2. moonwalker says:

    You misspelled ‘orc’ :-)

  3. Strife212 says:

    Grey Knights?

    That’s cool and all, I play Grey Knights on the tabletop, but I can’t help but feel it makes a mockery of the lore, being as there are only 1000 of them in the entire Galaxy and they could probably make a space marines head explode just by thinking about it.

    The hero classes are imbalanced, a Grey Knight is not even comparable with a Weird Boy.

    • UnravThreads says:

      This is an MMO. I think liberties are there to be taken, but I agree with your reasoning. Something more along the lines of a commanding unit like a chaplain would be much better, in my opinion.

    • ceriphim says:

      GREY KNIGHTS!!!

      I gotta get something to wipe off my keyboard, brb…

    • caddyB says:

      Here have some toilet paper to clean it with, I bought a 6 pack of those yesterday when I heard about the release date in anticipation of more news.

    • hoobajoo says:

      Why, WHY would the Orc hero class not be a Nob? For serious.

    • hoobajoo says:

      Why, WHY would the Orc hero class not be a Nob? For serious.

    • Davie says:

      The orks appear to get the short end of the stick here. weirdboyz and ‘ardboyz get eaten for lunch by the other three. Also, I really hope there are other endgame options for humans than “space marine”. I want to be an inquisitor or something the whole way.

    • Windward says:

      You’re hoisting yourself on your own petard there, though. If there are only 1000 of them in the Galaxy it doesn’t make sense for them to be an entire army on the tabletop either. In my day they were just a single unit for SM… But then, in my day, people fielded entire armies of Death Company, so what can I say!

    • Drinking with Skeletons says:

      If I understand 40k conventions correctly (and correct me if I’m wrong), nobz are just orks that have matured enough to become big and powerful. A Warboss is just a big huge nob whose size and power allow him to motivate his lesser brethren. If they do the ork thing properly, wouldn’t a player character start off as a lowly boy and end up as a nob regardless of class?

      Also if they do things properly, shouldn’t PvP instances be balanced so that ork players field a much larger number of participants than other factions? It’d be a bitch to balance, but if Left 4 Dead can do asymmetrical PvP then I don’t see why a big-budget MMO can’t do the same.

    • LazyLemming says:

      Actually Windward according to the mythology there’s only 1000 members of any given Space Marine chapter. Because of the Horus Heresy they broke up the massive legions and limited any chapter to 1000.

      I’m not sure that the Grey Knights follow the same structure though, someone more read up on them would have to say.

    • ceriphim says:

      Okay just for clarity’s sake, gentlemen, according to the most recent fluff there are around 3,000 Grey Knights. I don’t remember the exact details, but the gist of it is that the Inquisition recognizes they need shitloads of GKs to battle at the Eye (not to mention all the other demonic incursions around the galaxy), and they probably feel okay with a large number of them seeing as how not one of them has ever fallen or turned traitor.

      The above clarification aside, however, I am kinda bummed they’ll be the “hero” option. Mainly because there’s about as much chance of a high-level SM becoming a Grey Knight as there is a grizzled old Imperial Guard general becoming a Space Marine… Please don’t MMORAPE my fluff so hard. =(

    • Ultra Superior says:

      Players who die a lot can choose to become a Dreadnought at the hero level.

  4. phanteh says:

    You definitely misspelled ‘quote’ :)

    I am looking forwards to this – if they deliver Space Marine + RPG bits, I’d be a happy little gene seed.

  5. DrGonzo says:

    Space Marines and Orkz do not take cover! Having said that, the Imperial Guard would, so the mechanic could be good if used right.

    • Max Ursa says:

      actually space marines do use cover as dictated in the codex astartes. one of the reasons i cant get into Space Marine is that apparently ultramarines (the closest followers of the codex astartes) dont use cover…

      they are supersoldiers, not invincible or mad.

    • DrGonzo says:

      Yes, that is fair. I was meaning in the Gears of War sense. Slamming yourself into knee high walls etc. But let me correct you on one thing. A huge amount of them are indeed quite mad.

    • Drinking with Skeletons says:

      Despite all of the coverage–from critics as well as Relic–I thought that Space Marine, at its best, necessitated both the proper use of cover as well as intelligent use of ranged weaponry. Sure, there’s no cover system, but if I feel that I need to stand behind a pillar and wait for a gap in an ork rocket-launcher’s fire to pop out and shoot the bastard, then cover has a place in the game. That the various guns all handle very differently only adds to the fleeting moments when the game feels like it could have been something tactical and surprising.

    • aerozol says:

      @Mr. Ursa, I think that’s pretty in keeping with the Ultramarines fluff, which casts them as frustratingly arrogant, annoying, and often stupid. They were of course my starting army as a kid (as with everyone), but no way would I go there again.

  6. rapier17 says:

    Personally I’m torn on this one. On the one hand it’s 40k and I do love the lore, but on the other hand it looks like there is going to be some serious lore bending/breaking going on, all in the name of having ‘cool’, ‘heroic’ or ‘iconic’ classes.

    I’ll just have to keep dreaming of a WW2Online/Heroes & Generals style Imperial Guard MMO.

    • DrGonzo says:

      Yes, I was hoping for something like Planetside with 40k. There is only war after all. So straight after connecting to the server I should be shooting things, just before I leave the game I should be shooting things. I don’t want to talk to anyone, or receive quests from anyone. Just killing!

    • Leonard Hatred says:

      In the grim darkness of the future there is only pve?

  7. oatish says:

    Please Imperial Guard Please

  8. NauravaNakki says:

    PvP should be race vs. race not good guys vs. bad guys, but for an MMO that might be too chaotic (cant do anything because there is always some other-race-guy harassing you…). Also, please don’t start hyping me , this is like 1,5 years away :P

  9. Leonard Hatred says:

    Rampant speculation is GO!

    16 years ago I had some Eldar, so I’m definitely going to be those, however they are definitely going to ruin the lore because WE ALL KNOW that only a second tier farseer will be seven times more powerful than an ork chav boyz herd but they will definitely be using the same mission givers as space marines who, if you remember your lore correctly, cannot have the imperial bodega chapter in the same universe as marneus calgar because of the warp rift triggered in the unpublished Gaunt’s Ghosts novel.

    The baffling fluff behind 40k aside, liberties are going to be taken with it because most of it makes very little sense and its hard to balance omnipotent chaos deities, but i still have high hopes for this title. Mainly I hope they try to do something beyond the world of war hammer craft I was expecting, and this does rather suggest they will.

    Huzzah.

  10. Sami H says:

    Jim, source is this thread on Warseer: http://www.warseer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=320454. Bottom of page 2 has the bulk of the info.

  11. Vexing Vision says:

    Eldar Warlock -> Farseer for me if I can’t play a Harlequin. Why can’t I play a Harlequin? Scorpions are boring.

  12. Evoc says:

    Nooo, please dont limmit it down to 2 factions! Be interestiiiiiing!

    • nofing says:

      They wouldn’t do that, or would they?
      I really hope each race will be its own faction. A fun thing to add would be sth like a short term alliance between maybe Imperial Guard and Space Marines to fight against an overwhelming number of Chaos.
      The fighting mechanics sounds promising, just hope there won’t be to much useless and boring grinding.

    • aerozol says:

      How will they sell paid expansions if they do that??
      Snarky comment, I know, but it’s probably going to happen (:

  13. Cyberpope says:

    nerd time! Eldar and the Imperium have a long standing tradition of teaming up when the need arises, usually against chaos, and it tends to go well enough. It just always ends badly

    • TsunamiWombat says:

      And by badly we mean “time for an awesome post-war war.”

      But yes, this, in EXTREME situations they have had limited cooperation.They don’t interact or get on for heavens sake that would be silly, but they deign not to shoot each other while there’s chaos to be shot.

    • nofing says:

      Ah didn’t read you post before replying to Evoc.
      The idea of teaming up seems good, as long as it’s only a short term thing and after that they should go seperate ways (or kill each other!).

    • bleeters says:

      “Teaming up” to generally mean ‘using the other lot as expendable cats paws to try and further our own personal ends’, maybe.

  14. HermitUK says:

    “hive city” :D

    Also, I’m hoping they don’t go down an Order/Destruction route. If they’re planning a significant amount of World PvP or anything approaching RvR, having only two teams inevitably leads to one side dominating – WAR proved this to its cost when compared to the much more fluid RvR of DAoC. You need at least a third element in there to mix things up. Hopefully each race does its own thing and fights everyone else, as it should be.

    • Cyberpope says:

      maybe a necron faction? good for new players, easy controls. walk forward and shoot

    • TheFlyingWooly says:

      @HermitUK

      I concur.

    • Drinking with Skeletons says:

      Yeah, that was the problem with WAR. Well, that and some class imbalances. I liked the White Lion class because it was cool and actually required you to direct and utilize the pet, rather than just having it be a boring, passive addition to your DPS. But between the fact that the White Lion sucked and the fact that Destruction always outnumbered and usually outclassed Order, it was hard to feel like I was consistently having fun.

      One technique I’ve always thought would help would be if the game would deploy NPC forces to assist a team that’s grossly underpowered compared to the other. They certainly wouldn’t be as good as human players, but if done properly it could give the underdogs a fighting chance (and presumably give lower-level or poorer players of the dominant side a chance to contribute by dealing with the less-intimidating NPCs.)

    • HermitUK says:

      Funny enough, WAR was originally set to include Dogs of War (NPC mercenaries that would be spawned to participate in fights where one side was grossly outnumbered) but they were removed from the final game.

  15. Nihil says:

    Where the hell is my Necromunda game. That is all.

  16. GCU Speak Softly says:

    No love for the TAU then?

    • Drinking with Skeletons says:

      The Tau don’t fit the aesthetic of the setting very well at all, so I don’t blame the devs should they hold off on them until an expansion.

      Having said that, the fact that they don’t fit in actually makes them–to me, at least–a really good addition to the franchise. They’re the only faction that really feels like it’s from another planet, that genuinely feels alien. Despite being very different in terms of fluff, the Necrons, Orks, and Tyranids are functionally the same: brutal killing machines that cannot be truly stopped because they rebuild/grow from spores/emerge from hidden crypts of indeterminate number/arrive from beyond the known galaxy where they exist in indeterminate number/etc. Similarly, the Imperium, Eldar, and Chaos are all wholly self-interested and will destroy anything and everything else to preserve and/or further their own interests; the details may be different (cults, soulstones, Exterminatus, etc.), but its still the same basic plot of murdering their way to victory.

      The Tau may not be very many players’ favorite faction, but they really do add some nice contrast to the setting. Even if they mind-control their conquered subjects, they at least have a constructive purpose rather than mindless destruction or futile conservation.

    • YourMessageHere says:

      The Tau fit just as well as the Eldar. They’re an interesting and unusual part of the 40K universe and based on Dawn of War, I like them best. I can’t get why they’re not more popular.

    • Wulf says:

      The Tau aren’t popular with me because all my research shows them to be just as evil as everyone else, except they’re more insidious, they have a better PR machine. Basically I’m talking about propaganda. The Tau speak of the Greater Good, but the Ethereals appeared to have brainwashed all the Tau to start out with, and there’s little to contradict that notion. And the Tau seem to want to propagate that brainwashing and propaganda across the Universe in any way they can, calling it the ‘Greater Good.’

      They remind me of religious missionaries, and at the end of the day they’re horribly unethical. And to be honest, given the choice of being a sterilised, brainwashed drone of the Tau Empire, or being dead, I’d choose dead. That’s what I don’t like about the Tau. I don’t like how scheming, unpredictable, and creeping the Tau are. Their invasion is every bit as infectious as the tyrannids, but they try their hardest to not be obvious about it. They keep their propaganda machine running, and people buy into it.

      I’m not saying that the other races are any better, but I prefer some of the others. The orks, for example. you know where you stand with an ork, you know what you’re going to get. The Tau are less clear cut and your fate at the hand of a tau could be far, far more terrible than at the hand of a band of orks.

      Ultimately the tau remind me of Ascalonian humans in Guild Wars. The Ascalonians always acted like the wounded puppies who were being hounded by the so-called ‘savage beasts.’ What they neglected to tell people however was that the Ascalonians were the aggressors. They slaughtered the charr, they stole their homelands away from them, and they even had their gods send a divine avatar to kill charr kahn-ur. The Ascalonians were dicks. But because they acted pious, and they pretended to be noble and good, people liked them, and bought into their propaganda. But not me.

      See, that’s the same vibe I get from the tau. And it makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand on end, it gives me the shivers. They’re obviously unethical to the point of being objectively evil from what I understand about them, but yet you have people who think that they truly are as good as they claim to be. The difference with the tau isn’t that they actually are good in any way, they’re as destructive and self-interested as any of the other races, it’s just that they pretend to be different and they have this massive propaganda machine going to convince the rest of the Universe of this, too.

      I like the honesty of the other races. At least the Imperials aren’t lying about being fascist, xenophobic, hateful idiots. At least the orks aren’t lying about being rather bloodthirsty and battle-craving, at least chaos isn’t lying about them being somewhat chaotic and destructive monsters. But the tau…

      Blargh.

    • Dawngreeter says:

      Wulf, you’re not helping the “gamers are not able to tell reality from fiction” argument at all.

    • aerozol says:

      Dawngreeter, no.

  17. mentor07825 says:

    I hope to C’tan that you can play as the Necrons, and won’t act as an NPC race in the game.

    Also, to say that the Eldar and the Space Marines working together in the same faction won’t be exactly cannon breaking. It did say that this is taking place in a certain area and the Eldar have been known to work together with the Space Marines when it suited them. Just….you can’t trust them that much, that’s all.

    For example, the Dawn of War expansion that included the Imperial Guard as a playable race had a faction based storyline to it. Space Marines and Eldar were on the side of good and when you were playing as the Eldar you had to try and convince the Space Marines that you’re on their side, and helping them behind the scenes. Only to suit the Eldar’s plans, of course.

    So factional based warfare can actually work out, it’s just going to be a tightrope.

  18. Windward says:

    A wee reply fail, but err.. Yeah, ho hum, hmm, must say something… Look, over there!

    • Strife212 says:

      Well on the tabletop my (or anyone elses) army of 20 can reasonably be part of the overall force.

      When you’ve got 9999 Grey Knights running around on an online server (if Grey Knight is the Imperium hero class why would you play anything else?) then it’s a little different :p

  19. buzzmong says:

    Well, I’ll certainly have a crack at this when it goes live in a couple of years methinks.

    However, looking at the scant details so far, it’s not a game I’d keep playing as it’s not what I want from a 40k game.

    Edit: Grey Knights as the Imperium Hero character? Nnnnrrgggh. No.
    They’re meant to be extremely secretive and rare. Should be a more common “hero” like a Dreadnaught or Librarian, Chaplain etc… if you’re even going to go down that route.
    Unless of course, “hero” status is randomly assigned to a small % of players on a server who meet the criteria at any one time.

  20. Kevin says:

    It’d be cool if there was a Catachan or Harlequin prestige class. In fact, the Harlequins themselves can comprise of their own “race” as it were. You’d have your Great Harlequin as a tank, your Solitaire as your melee DPS, your Death Jester as your ranged DPS, and your Shadowseer as spellcasting support.

  21. danimalkingdom says:

    Ain’t going anywhere near this unless there’re Impy Guards. IMPY GUARDS! And tanks please. I’ll happily grind in a tank. Grind grind grrrrrrind.

  22. TormDK says:

    Please don’t make Grey Knights a “hero” class – We had enough of that type of player in WoW.

    Instead use the Black Templars – they have plenty of options. You could even go as far as to let people join the Deathwatch instead of getting access to grey knights.

    That way we get to play our mains, rather than make a gimp main only to switch to a “hero” class.

    • Nevard says:

      The comparison to WoW in your post was an odd one because Death Knights (despite the hero class name) aren’t actually in any way more powerful than any other class in the game.

    • Grygus says:

      They start at level 55. That’s a nice (and unique) bonus.

    • Nevard says:

      Yes but as you need to reach level 55 to unlock them, it isn’t (as he was implying) something that would make people feel forced to change what character they use!

    • TormDK says:

      I’m a huuuuuuuuge Black Templar fanboiiiii, but I’m also quite keen on the Grey Knights.

      I’m just saying that unlocking “Hero” classes should not be considered a good idea. The Black templar presense in DMO is ok lore wise, since they are in greater numbers than other chapters and are constantly crusading about the galaxy but I have a problem with a ton of Grey Knights running about for no other reason than to promote cool factor.

      What they should do instead is allow us to unlock Deathwatch armour styles and talents as a progression path. That way we don’t have to involve the Grey Knights as a gimmic, and we would still be able to progress our main character in a good manner that does not rub the lore quite as much as a massive Grey Knight presence would do.

  23. Kronus says:

    I can’t see how these supposed Hero classes could work with a leveling MMO. Sure, being a Grey Knight could be cool, but they’re extremely rare (and powerful) for a good reason. Having a player in control of one wouldn’t do it justice and frankly wouldn’t be anywhere near cannon. Only way I can see this “Hero” class upgrade would be with having a higher rank based on the faction played. Space Marines would become veterans, Chaos Marines would be chosen, Eldar would be Exarchs and so forth. The Codex’s alone provide a wealth of information that would allow a player to choose an appropriate “Hero” class without having to be limited to something that isn’t cannon or doesn’t make sense. That’s my two cents.

  24. FRIENDLYUNIT says:

    “The game is using the Darksiders engine, and will have “gameplay similar to Space Marine”.”

    Oh dear god yes.

    … I was hoping I could write this off and not have to buy it. :(

  25. LazyLemming says:

    I always thought a great way to do MMO classes for the Imperium was to have everyone start out as a guardsmen. At some point in the game you can be selected to be a Space Marine, Join the Sisters, or continue your career as a Guardsmen and become a squad leader (Weaker than others, but you get NPC squad members!)

  26. DarkFenix says:

    Now aside from the fact that Eldar teaming up with Space Marines and Orks teaming up with anyone is retarded, if the game does arbitrarily use two-faction pvp it’s going to suck. Simple as that, two factions results in complete imbalance no matter how much you try to shuffle around stats and such.

    When are developers going to learn that you need 3 factions to maintain anything resembling status quo, you’ll still have an imbalanced game, but the imbalance won’t ruin the game.

  27. durandal says:

    Strictly speaking (as something of a walking 40k encyclopedia), Space Marine and Eldar mixed parties aren’t cannon breaking, simply extremely rare. The Imperium might preach Suffer not the Xeno but it also preaches Suffer not the Witch and look how it literally relies on psykers to maintain itself.

    The Imperium is excessively xenophobic, however the highest levels are actually capable of working with aliens in a limited capacity. And, indeed, with Inquisitorial and/or Administratum permission it is sometimes that aliens are declared ‘Sanctioned Xenos’. Meaning that they are recognized within the Imperium and allowed to operate more or less without a problem so long as their employer/owner is near by. Though this is generally seen only with Kroot/Orks/other mercenary alien races who don’t hate the Imperium too much…but I digress..

  28. utharda says:

    I was terrified that I was going to read the game would be browser based wth a cash shop. Or knowing GW in game weapons would be obtained by scanning codes on the bottom of miniatures.

    So this is pleasant. The left/ right mouse button weapon controls sound nifty. All in all, I’d like to see this game board SW:tor and purify it.

    “Honour is the greatest difference between us and the monsters we fight”

  29. sneetch says:

    They haven’t read Animal Farm; four factions good, two factions bad. They have 4 fantastic factions right there… Imperium, Ork, Chaos and Eldar… the battles could be awesome.

  30. Zepp says:

    @Jim Rossignol “I am totally being a chaos space marine, anyway.”

    You just sealed your fate baby boy! FOR THE EMPEROR!

  31. DK says:

    “Lock-on melee isn’t exactly skill-heavy”
    You haven’t played Dark Messiah of Might and Magic have you? Lock on melee is brilliant, because it means tactics are more important than twitch. 1v1 fights come down to good dodging and blocking, while team fights are all about letting your more damaging mates sneak behind while the tougher person tries and hold the enemies attention and lock.

  32. Grayvern says:

    The assassin starts as a guardsman-esque character, eh what? And psyker or splodey head man instead of gamma level inquisitor also stupid.

    Space marine as a starting class understandable but still.

    Technically some ‘chaos’ space marines cry for the emperor in battle.