Soon Among Us: Warhammer 40,000: Space Wolf

By Graham Smith on November 28th, 2013 at 8:00 pm.

Space wolves, yesterday.

It seems like MOBAs have a rival for in the race to be the current wrong-headed obsession of the industry. Games Workshop have announced that, like everyone else, they’re making a free-to-play collectible card game. It’s called Warhammer 40k: Space Wolf, it’s out next Spring, and there’s a brief, underwhelming trailer below.

Do I sound more dismissive than usual? That’s because Games Workshop’s recent track record hasn’t been great, through Space Hulk, past Dungeonbowl, and… Did anyone even bother playing Chainsaw Warrior?

Part of my frustration is that these aren’t even games you can completely ignore. They’re taking beloved concepts, smart mechanics, and locking them away behind low-budget, buggy experiences.

Ach, I’m a downer. Maybe it’ll be different this time. “Complete missions and challenges to get new powerful cards, upgrade them at the Iron Priest’s Forge and make your enemies tremble in fear.” That might be fun. Play that Chainsword card. “Attack: 70×2. Hit: 90%,” it says on it. In the grim darkness of the far future there is a 90% chance of war. In the grim darkness of the far future there is only microtransactional collectible card games.

Shit, no, sorry, there I go again. I like turn-based strategy games! I was never a Warhammer kid, but I get the appeal. Come on in. Buy some figurines, paint ‘em up real nice. Play with your friends round a table. A shop just for you. Maybe you can re-visit that feeling next spring, in your house, at your computer, alone, by giving more of your money over to this thing.

Shit, shit! Sorry, no. Seriously, let’s reserve judgement. There are probably people working on this who are passionate and just want to make a great thing. Let’s give them the chance.

Sorry! Sorry!

, , , .

65 Comments »

  1. Premium User Badge Gap Gen says:

    Does every game these days have to have a dog?

    • Premium User Badge Anthile says:

      Dogs are the new bows.

      • SominiTheCommenter says:

        Screw the year of the Luigi, this is the year of the Canis Familiaris!

    • loquee says:

      my best friend’s mother-in-law makes 0.5 Shells/hour on the internet. She has been without any witty TBS for nine months but last month she discovered this on steam early access for only $7.99 just playing a few matches a day she already has learned that combining MOBA and Chess could be the alternative to dull LoL clones . Read more on this site…>>>> store.steampowered.com/app/247830/

    • Syra says:

      Forget dogs, WHERE ARE THE GOD DAMNED BEARDS?! THIS IS UNACCEPTABLE!!

  2. MajorManiac says:

    I/We feel your pain.

    • Ultra Superior says:

      Part of my frustration is that these aren’t even games you can completely ignore. They’re taking beloved concepts, smart mechanics, and locking them away behind low-budget, buggy experiences.

      THOUSAND TIMES THIS TRUTH ETCHED INTO THE GOLDEN THRONE OF HOLY TERRA THOUSAND PSYKERS DIE EACH DAY FOR THE ASTRONOMICON THESE WORDS THEIR DYING SCREAM

  3. Syphus says:

    I don’t understand, I see what looks like random Dawn of War.

    • Ultra Superior says:

      They must be the same identical 3D models… I can’t spot a difference

      • DeVadder says:

        And even worse: Scout, Marine and Terminator all have the same young mans face!

        • Syra says:

          I cry because wolf scouts are not baby marines but among the oldest and most capable.

        • Amstrad says:

          Hate to be a pundit but each of the Space Marines chapters are made up entirely of clones of the original genetically-engineered sons of the Emperor.. so it makes sense for members of the same chapter to have identical faces. I’d imagine being genetically-engineered clones can also account for Space Marines who are supposedly older than their peers still looking pretty much the same.

          • malkav11 says:

            That’s not actually true. Space Marine chapters recruit tough men and then perform radical surgery and genetic modification on them to insert -organs- that are cloned from the “geneseed” of the Primarchs. Each of the various chapters has their own preferred recruiting worlds, often savage “deathworlds” and such that breed particularly hardened warriors.

    • Zantetsuken says:

      Everyone tend to idealize games of their past :)

      • The Laughing Owl says:

        Yeah let’s compare a AAA game with polished animations with an ugly low budget ‘riding the Hearthstone CCG train’ crap. Yeah, it’s totally nostalgia goggles that makes some people think this game is not up to par.

  4. DatonKallandor says:

    Yeah Games Workshops new policy of “let anyone who asks have the license so they can make a game” is incredibly fucking dumb. It’s utterly stupid. There’s no better way to run your brand into the ground than let anybody who asks put the name on whatever they make with no oversight whatsoever.

    Relic singlehandedly elevated Warhammer 40k from niche to a digital gaming brand with name recognition, and now they’re letting every clown with 20k to make a game trample on it.

    • slerbal says:

      Warhammer 20k? ;-)

      More seriously though, I couldn’t agree more. Such a rich universe and so little care. I really enjoyed both Dawn of War games and I got a tiny bit of enjoyment out of Space Marine, but asides from that…nothing…

      I’d love a decent 40k game set during the Horus Heresy or even before – play as the Emperor in the Great Crusade and reconquer the stars….

    • Bull0 says:

      Personally I really liked Space Marine, but I think sequel chances are basically nil. I think it hasn’t really registered with me yet that we probably won’t get a Dawn of War 3. =/

      • Moraven says:

        Space Marine’s combat is fun, but the level design was to simple. The art and controls were great. I understand they wanted a break from Dawn of War, I could see a Space Marine 2 be better if it was more open world levels. Kinda how the 40k MMO/RPG was starting to look, but with non MMO controls.

        • Bull0 says:

          It sounds as though the “Eternal War” 40k MMO would play to your tastes, since it’s basically the space marine combat in open worlds – but alas, multiplayer focussed (they’ve suggested NPC defenders for capture points on the map and stuff, and there’ll be NPC tyranids to fight) and also very very early and will probably get cancelled next week anyway

          • Syra says:

            That was cancelled months ago, remoulded to a single player RPGs with multiplayer elements and then cancelled again before thq even went bust so yeah, years ago.

          • TumblingDownTheHill says:

            @Syra

            You’re thinking of Dark Millenium.

            Eternal Crusade (Crusade, not War) is a new game, announced back in June, made by another developer.
            As far as I know it has nothing to do with THQ’s ultimately doomed game.

          • Bull0 says:

            Eternal crusade, that’s the one! Thanks.

        • iniudan says:

          You forgot the terrible last part of the final boss, but I am indeed among those that liked the game, best combat I had seen in a 3rd person action game in a long time (played on hard from the start and don’t play a whole lot of third person action game, so might be what give me a better impression)

          • jonahcutter says:

            Agreed. That final boss is one of the worst, most out-of-place, capitulations to QTE “gameplay” there is.

            That said, I loved the rest of the game. I understand it took some liberties with the lore, but I think it really nailed the atmosphere and feel of the IP. And the incessant dive-rolling aside, the combat, though simple, was so so satisfying.

            Also, it had excellent voice work. And didn’t fall into the trope of the cartoonishly deep marine voice.

            I’d love a sequel.

          • Bull0 says:

            Mark Strong and Danny Webb, masters of their craft

        • DatonKallandor says:

          You know Space Marine was originally an RPG with skill trees, level and inventories, where you control 4 marines with different classes at the same time? Basically the Dawn of War 2 singleplayer but with God of War/Gears of War hybrid controls instead of RTS controls. And because you had 4 marines instead of the single marine we got the enemies were real hordes instead of 5-6 per encounter.

          They should have stuck by that even if it took longer to make.

    • acoff001 says:

      I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Games Workshop needs to license a Dark Heresy/Rogue Trader RPG. Give it to Bioware, Obsidian, or CD Project and rake in the money.

      • ZyloMarkIII says:

        I concur. In fact, any of the published tabletop RPGs from Fantasy Flight would work well translated into a proper video game RPG. How many times have the Space Marines been the dominant force in these Warhammer 40K games? Give the other inhabitants of that universe a chance to shine and LET THE GALAXY BURN!

      • horus_lupercal says:

        I should have known someone would ninja me on this idea. I’d play the heck out of a DH style game, something dark and brooding where the characters are overmatched by the evil they face… integrating the insanity system would be interesting, though probably undoable, and imagine the screams if the RNG has the warp swallow your psyker or turn him into a daemonhost… :-D

  5. wodin says:

    If this was a turn based single player game I’d be interested. If it’s an online only thing I’m not.

    Sadly at the moment there are no future WH40K games that appeal to me..all I want is a new Chaos Gate. Slitherines game is just a reskinned Panzer Corps..which they deny to the hilt..but look at the screenshots..it is.

    • slerbal says:

      Slitherine by name…

    • Bull0 says:

      Not even the Planetside type thing, Eternal War? Is it called Eternal War? Let’s call it Eternal War.

    • ilya says:

      First of all we are trying to make an enthralling single player campaign.

      • wodin says:

        Are you the developer? If so I’m happy your making a single player campaign..and wish you all the luck.

  6. Zantetsuken says:

    “Underwhelming trailer”? I’m not sure if you know that Wh40k:Space Wolf is (mostly) an iPad game. Maybe you have some other “underwhelming” examples on this platform that have the same level of graphics and so on?

    • Dominic White says:

      I’m pretty sure that iThings now play host to the Infinity Blade series, which – if not overwhelming – at least leave me feeling moderately whelmed by their graphical fidelitudinousness. I second that this trailer is distinctly short on whelminess. Underwhelming, even.

    • Jools says:

      XCOM exists on iDevices and looks pretty good, actually. At least as good as this.

    • DeVadder says:

      But from what i understand they want to sell the game to me to play it on pc, right? As i do not have any iThings and stuff…
      Why i should i be whelmed by the graphics that are measly and boring on the platform i would pay for it on just because it also runs on some other platform with less power?

      • Zantetsuken says:

        Fair enough :)

        Btw I think that PC release will happen in a year or so after the initial WH40k:Space Wolf (iOS) release. It’s only my guess but I’m pretty sure.

    • Graham Smith says:

      As others have said, they’re releasing the game on PC. But also, you do realise that “underwhelming” need not refer solely to its graphics? It’s a brief boring trailer that shows next to nothing and does so without style.

      • PostieDoc says:

        You need to change your picture to a dinosaur or something.
        Or maybe CODs ninja dog?
        I like dinosaurs.

    • Zekiel says:

      It is dreadful trailer. Ooh look, a Scout fires a sniper rifle. He hits a Chaos Marine. Nothing happens. Ooh look, a guy uses a jump pack. He jumps next to a Chaos Marine. Nothing happens.

      Wooo.

  7. Makai says:

    The Emperor is not protecting.

  8. AlwaysRight says:

    “Games Workshop’s recent track record”

    Whoa whoa whoa! Games Workshop are NOT making these weapons-grade atrocities of games themselves!

    • Graham Smith says:

      But they are licensing (and in some cases commissioning/financing) those who are. They are responsible.

      • AlwaysRight says:

        Games Workshop do NOT commission and/or finance these games.

  9. Bull0 says:

    Chainsaw warrior is great and, crucially, priced appropriately. It’s also bastard hard, which is novel. It’s a nice thing to have since the board game is unavailable and didn’t have a miniature component so you’re not missing as much compared to space hulk, but this is speaking as a self-confessed Games Workshop fanboi (particularly the 80s era when it wasn’t all about selling people a new space marine codex every year)

    As for this, I agree. Doesn’t look particularly promising.

  10. Moraven says:

    Space Hulk is solid now and is a good game, as long as you know you are playing a digitized version of a board game. To bad it did not release at 1.2. Should have done the Early Access route!

  11. strangeloup says:

    I bothered playing Chainsaw Warrior! It’s alright.

    This also looks alright.

    Even if it has all the microtransactions in the world, you can probably be the God-Emperor of this game for the price of about 3 actual GW models.

  12. jalf says:

    Ok, the license obviously goes to whichever developer Games Workshop wants to give it to, I can understand that part.
    But how did they end up with Relic’s 3d models from Dawn of War?

  13. Jediben says:

    Necromunda. I will accept nothing less than this, crystallized and digitized and upon my PC for exciting Spire-based combat.

    • Slazia says:

      Yes!!!!

    • horus_lupercal says:

      This’d be nice too. I was hoping XCOM would be much more mod friendly as the mechanics for that, heck the developers said they played a lot of necromunda while making XCOM, would have made a great Necromunda style game. A proper one though with persistent rankings and multiplayer would be brilliant.

  14. mwoody says:

    God I want another Metal Gear: Acid (Ac!d?). No microtransactions, complex and interesting levels; the second one is one of the greatest examples of this genre to date, but it didn’t sell well.

    And another Culdcept, while we’re at it, but now I’m just getting greedy. And console-y.

  15. Sqweebo says:

    Man, the quality of games reporting on RPS gets worse and worse every week.

    • MichaelGC says:

      Absolutely. Preferable would have been something along these lines…

      SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF* SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF BIG BAD SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF PIGS IN SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF SPACE WOLF FACE WOLF SPACE WOLF.

      * SPACE WOLF.

  16. PedroTheHutt says:

    Where’s Force Commander Indrick Boreale when you need him…

  17. horus_lupercal says:

    I really, really, wish someone would do a turn based adventure/investigation game based on the Inquisition. It’d be brilliant to have a brooding games et in the depths of imperial hives uncovering a series of cultish murders, system hopping as you track down various threads leading to a horrifying finale. If a company could pull it off there’d be so many expansions/DLCS they could do covering different investigations.

    However seeing as the focus of the game wouldn’t be on SPESH MAHRINES and over the top combat it’ll never happen :-(

    • fuggles says:

      Me again, token DoW fanboi. A team has been working on making a linear campaign for Dark Crusade called Darkness Within, which is based on the inquisition. I’m not privvy to early beta, but the guys involved all do great work, so I’m looking forward to it immensely. The first part is allegedly out around Xmas time:
      http://www.moddb.com/mods/darkness-within-inquisition-campaign-mod

      Incidentally this is based largely on the Inquisition and Witch hunters race mod for DoW1 (There is also a space wolf mod for DoW1). DoW1 baby, it’s pretty much got you covered! Gotta love Grey Knight Terminators.

      This game looks alright, but it’s not using DoW assets I don’t think. I won’t pay microtransactions though, but will likely try it as it’s 40k. Keep hoping fir a rerelease of Final liberation, or relic to fall back on making more DoW, or gods willing, Necromunda. They could always release the dumb Xbox shooter on PC for funzies.

      • horus_lupercal says:

        Cheers for that, i’ll be watching progress with interest :-)

  18. Eviljimmy says:

    After the success of the Planetary Annihilation kickstarter and pre order, why have none of these companies realised that there is a demand for large scale slow paced RTS games? Can you imagine a Warhammer 40k game in the style of TA or Sup Com? I would play that shit for days! You could even release DLC for each of the sides apart from the usual starting basic SM, Ork and Eldar.

  19. Darth Gangrel says:

    “In the grim darkness of the far future there is only microtransactional collectible card games” Now THAT really does sound like a dystopy. In times like that, I’d just disappear into the world of my old games and pretend like that other stuff doesn’t exist.