IN THE GRIM DARKNESS OF THE FAR FUTURE THERE IS ONLY CHESS

By Alec Meer on May 13th, 2014 at 6:00 pm.

In NEWS SO IMPORTANT I’M PREPARED TO BUTCHER THE RPS HOUSE STYLE AND HAVE A TWO-LINE HEADLINE, a Games Workshop-approved Warhammer 40,000 chess game has just been announced. All these years we’ve waited for Chess 2, only for Chess 40,000 to jump the queue. The grimmest, darkest, heretic-burniest chess ever, presumably.

I am both overjoyed and appalled.

Its official, typographically-upsetting name is Warhammer 40,000: Chess – Regicide, and an outfit called Hammerfall Publishing are behind it.

There’s not too much to go on, but full 3D units are promised, with “hundreds of handcrafted kill and death animations motion captured utiziling military trained fight and stunt choreographers”, according to this IGN story.

There’ll also be a Blood Angels-focused campaign (again, sigh) and a story by GW regular Ross Watson.

Here’s a teaser trailer:

There’s also a unit render trailer here, if you like.

More details as we have them (I really want to see those boards), but in the meantime
ONLY CHESS ONLY CHESS ONLY CHESS ONLY CHESS ONLY CHESS

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113 Comments »

  1. Fumarole says:

    Chess for the Chess god!

    • Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

      Pawns for the throne of Khorne!

    • Syra says:

      American accents for the great devourer!

      Such utter tosh. I’ll keep my 40k very british thanks.

    • Ultra Superior says:

      This is how greatness dies. I hope one of the Radical Inquisitors purges the rotten bastard that now sits on the golden throne of GW IP management.

      Tzeentch we can’t believe in.

  2. Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

    Chess… campaign?

    Follow the tale of an Imperial Guard pawn, the last survivor of a massacre. Research new pieces and build them, and build up your forces to the full chess set, then destroy the enemy by unleashing the unprecedented new “Baneblade” piece, which takes up 4 squares and can only be taken by the opposing queen.

    • The Random One says:

      You’re joking, but I’d play a chess TBS in a heart-turn. I’d call it Rise of King 64.

    • Horg says:

      Inevitable Chaos expansion DLC to feature new game mode where players must corrupt their opponents pieces without being detected. Once the heresy has been uncovered, the race is on to destroy your opponent using all corrupt pieces before Exterminatus wipes the board.

  3. HVO-Jetfire says:

    “There’ll also be a Blood Angels-focused campaign (again, sigh) ”

    If you’re referring to Dawn of War, those are the Blood Ravens, not the Blood Angels (irritating, I know).

    • Detocroix says:

      And if referring to Space Hulk (2) OR Space Hulk 2013… then Blood Angels. People are bored of Blood Angels because 2nd edition was so damn heavily marketed with Blood Angels.

      • SanguineAngel says:

        But I…. I love the Blood Angels. They’re very much my favourite chapter

      • Bull0 says:

        Yeah, I think you’ll find that’s because Blood Angels are the best ones

        • mpk says:

          Dark Angels best angels.

          • Stellar Duck says:

            What is it to be a Dark Angel? It is to be the first Legion, the honoured, the Sons of the Lion.

        • Steven Hutton says:

          Mary-Sue Marines can go directly to the warp.

          World Eaters forever!

        • Syra says:

          The best of the pansy chapters sure. Go play at make-up with fulgrim in the corner.

          The men of Dorn are here to hold the fort while you’re at it.

          • Crowley65 says:

            Pah! Millions of forts have fallen at the hands of the sons of Olympia. Not even the walls of Terra can withstand the concentrated might of the Iron Warriors! From iron cometh strength! From strength cometh will! From will cometh faith! From faith cometh honour! From honour cometh iron!

          • Sentinel of Terra says:

            So, we meet again….

          • Syra says:

            But the walls of Terra *DID* withstand the Iron Warriors. The Emperor’s Praetorians held it! Olympia is no more heretic!

    • The Random One says:

      Things with “blood” in their name for the god with “blood” in its name!

    • RogerioFM says:

      Blood Ravens rule.

      • Stellar Duck says:

        I used to not mind the Blood Ravens. Then I stupidly bought the CS Goto books. Holy crap, they are bad.

        And that’s quite a statement, talking about a franchise known for pulpy nonsense.

        But at least Abnett and Sandy Mitchell are decent writers. Most of the others though? Not so much.

        • Syra says:

          Mitchells is alright he has a very unique style. It’s Abnett and Dembski Bowden for me… with the odd smattering of McNeil. Just straight up avoid most of the other nonsense nowadays. Goto was a joke from the start!

    • Sentinel of Terra says:

      I’m pretty sick of them too. Obviously I’d love to see more games feature my favorite chapter. But even setting them aside, there are plenty of really cool chapters who’s fluff is relatively blank that could really use some love; Doom Eagles come to mind. Iron Hands would be cool too.

  4. Detocroix says:

    Why don’t they just take the rulebook, make nice graphics, turn it in to a digital goddamn miniature game with real rules and content? Chaos Gate, thus far, has been the best Warhammer game I have ever played that wasn’t with the actual miniatures.

    I know I would pay anything between 60 and 100€ for it.

    • ramirezfm says:

      You’re not the only one. Hell, I would buy the collector’s edition.

    • Sunjumper says:

      Pretty much this.

    • Sam says:

      I suspect they’re worried people would stop buying their physical miniatures if the digital version was good enough.
      Which is easily enough solved if they have purchases of real world miniature sets give you the same unit in the game. I understand a similar scheme is causing the Skylanders franchise to drown in money.

      Give me a call (and 1% of revenue,) Games Workshop.

      • SanguineAngel says:

        Maybe it is time do embrace this digital age or stop charging a multitude of arms and legs for miniatures. I was long ago priced out of collecting. most people i know were

      • Sian says:

        If that’s what they’re afraid of I can reassure them: I know quite a few people who aren’t ever going to buy their miniatures. For most, they are prohibitively expensive. For some, like me, assembling and painting miniatures is just not fun. I’d love to play Warhammer, but I’m too clumsy to build an army.

        So give me a digital version of your amazing game already, GW! I’d pay! I love Sam’s suggestion, by the way.

        • Bull0 says:

          Gotta say, at the moment at least the ‘game’ part of wh40k is a bloated, unbalanced, frustrating and complex mess. I think if you strip away the hobby side of it you’re left with a pretty average game, at best.

          • Reapy says:

            I wondered that it might expose something like that, internet gaming tends to drag out all of a game’s balance demons like nothing else.

            I myself love miniatures, but can’t paint nor afford them (with no purpose I can’t justify the expense), and I love the idea of miniature style games (which is why I have a ton of heroscape, descent, mansions of madness/ anything with figures board games), and I just don’t think I have the stomach for the inaccuracy of movement/range measured with a ruler. But I still want to play the idea of a warhammer game, turn based destruction with badass units at a large scale.

            So their audience would be people like me, the ones who will never play warhammer IRL, but would probably start getting money and collecting like a madman with a good digital game. In fact, hearthstone is doing this to me also, I’m even less interested in card games, but I’ve fallen in deeply with collecting and building decks, something I had never felt was approachable for me before.

            Honestly, I guess it is good, I think as a company I hate games workshop for everything they do to market their stuff…. but I love their products. So I guess it is best that Privateer Press already has my money for Warmachine Tactics, which looks to be doing exactly what games workshop is too stubborn to. Instead they will continue to dilute their IP with shitty game after shitty game.

  5. BarryAllen says:

    It’s pretty interesting they have changed the tagline to “far future” from “41st millennium”. Will 40k finally move past the year 40,999?

    • Stellar Duck says:

      Purge this heretic!

    • Syra says:

      It’s pretty interchangeable for far future and 41st millenium. The thing is they do a lot of business in the 30th millenium too so they don’t wana pidgeonhole it.

    • hemmer says:

      You’ll find that 40.000-40.999 IS the 41st Millenium. The first millenium being 0-999.

  6. Syphus says:

    Chalk up one trailer that tells me absolutely nothing about anything. If this isn’t Tri-dimensional chess I will be disappointed. Until it actually comes out, its back to setting up miniatures on a chess board for me.

  7. Ramshackle Thoughts says:

    At the Games Workshop licensing office:
    “Hey boss, have you seen this XCOM game? With the forces of humanity fighting aliens with a turn-based grid system? I was thinking that -”
    “Not now, Jenkins. I’ve just got off the phone with the people who make Monopoly, and boy, do they have a deal for us!”

    • Myrdinn says:

      Spot on!

    • genotype says:

      ^^ this

    • almostDead says:

      It’s people like you, who make me ashamed at my attempts at comedy. Fuck.

    • cpt_freakout says:

      I lol’d

    • Moraven says:

      We did get Warhammer 40k: Squad Command. It is a 40k X-Com game, actions points, destructable environment, Overwatch, etc.

      I liked it but alas it only made its way to handhelds in the DS and PSP.

      • apa says:

        Hey, that was a good one! The disk is still in my PSP, I really should play through the campaign someday.

  8. Cokesakto says:

    *sigh* As I keep saying in these 40k license misuse announcements, DARK HERESY video game adaptation please. Fuck it, VALKYRIA CHRONICLES-style DEATHWATCH game. Please, please. No lane based video games. No chess reskins.

  9. TomxJ says:

    Well at least it’ll be more Balanced that 40k eh?

    This really irks me. Games workshop are sitting on one of the most interesting, vast and absorbing universes out there and they let thier IP out to a company who makes space marine Chess game from it? What about a conspiracy focused RPG where you play as an inquisitor with the power to snuff out a world with but a word? or a Galaxy spanning Conquest game where you Lord Solar Macharius push you troops ever foward against Rebels, Xeno and Interdimensional Horrors bringing light of the emperor whether they like it or not?

    Or the sims 3 – Commorragh edition?

    • Synesthesia says:

      It’s quite appalling. Weren’t these chess animated gimmicky games already over by 1994?

      • Gap Gen says:

        They do have a checkered past, for sure.

        EDIT: But yes, this is far more awkward than I remember: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qKcZwPb7C3k

        EDIT2: Oh my: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v5H7ErRoKsg

        • Geebs says:

          They had to change the original plan to make the Rebel pawns be Ewoks, because every one of the testers ran all of them straight forward to be slaughtered.

          • Gap Gen says:

            The plan to replace them with Bothans also failed, I assume.

          • hotmaildidntwork says:

            Well, hopefully they still got the information they needed.

          • Geebs says:

            All dead I’m afraid, got too close to the Emperor’s exhaust port.

            BTW, did anybody else imagine this conversation?

            VADER: Luke? Stop sniggering boy, I know I’m the queen. Get over it.
            LUKE: Yes?
            VADER: You know how you’re the king on your side, and Leia’s the queen?
            LUKE: Yeah, and?
            VADER: There’s something Obi-Wan didn’t tell you…

      • AngusPrune says:

        In the grim darkness of the far future, there is only Software Toolworks.

    • DarkFenix says:

      Games Workshop is pretty much the most creatively bankrupt entity in the universe, I’ve given up expecting anything interesting out of them game-wise.

    • Korvus Redmane says:

      “Or the sims 3 – Commorragh edition?”

      That would be terrifying. The first sims with an 18+ rating.

    • Steven Hutton says:

      You joke, but a city builder game set on Cadia could rock awesome socks. How DO you manage the logistics of a world of 40,000,000,000 citizens who’re drafted at birth?

  10. misterT0AST says:

    I guess Games Workshop doesn’t have the license for any good board games for their “Warhammer miniature tabletop boardgame” franchise. Looking forward to Warhammer: Carcassonne and Warhammer: Warmachines.

    • Bull0 says:

      Well, there are loads actually, but they’re all developed by Fantasy Flight under license from GW. GW proper are only interested in the tabletop 40k and Warhammer Fantasy Battle (and even then, it’s mostly 40k these days)

  11. The Random One says:

    It’s funny to say we’ve been waiting for Chess 2 because there already is a Chess 2. In fact, if you count the variances proposed by grandmasters, there are like eight Chess 2′s. Also ask Rob about The Duke.

  12. Lemming says:

    I want a 2d fighting game with Warhammer heroes. Don’t ask me why, I don’t even play fighting games, but I’d play that one.

    • SillyWizard says:

      I would play it if it felt Warhammery, with most of the units being ridiculously slow and unwieldy. A real thinking-man’s 2D fighter.

      • Bull0 says:

        Careful, talk like this is how we ended up with the execrable Star Wars: Masters of Teras Kasi on the Playstation.

      • Gargenville says:

        I don’t know, what little I know of 40K armaments suggests it’d be like a MvC2 tournament with nothing but Cable vs Cable matches (read: any MvC2 tournament).

  13. mpk says:

    I wonder who it is at GWHQ that is so scared of allowing their Universe to be used in games befitting of their potential – genre ripoffs or not (Planetside 40K anyone? GalCiv 40K? WarhammerCiv for that matter? Borderlands 40K with an Orky cast? Sir, You Are Being Hunted by Genestealers? Any of the plethora of recent zombie games with Undead who fight back? With swords? C’mon guys!)

    Don’t they understand what a powerful gateway drug those games could be? I got Space Hulk and Hero Quest one Christmas and then spent the next few years obsessing over WFB and 40K (particularly Epic because Titans). Especially if coupled with a Skylanders type system, as someone mentioned above,

    • Sian says:

      Well, that new WH40k MMO that’s in development kinda-sorta sounds like Planetside, doesn’t it? Though I doubt it’ll be any good.

  14. Nenjin says:

    Forget the power of technology and science, for so much as been forgotten because it doesn’t turn a quick buck. Forget the promise of progress and understanding, for in the grim dark future there are only shitty licensed games.There is no peace among the stars, only an eternity of mediocrity and low expectations, and the laughter of thirsting accountants.

  15. Bull0 says:

    Shame about the american space marines – incredibly jarring. We all know everybody in the future sounds like Mark Strong or Terence Stamp. Or Sean Pertwee. God bless Sean Pertwee.

    • Bull0 says:

      Even Peter Serafinowicz got the gig once, as I recall. Really, lots of really great VO people get to be space marines

  16. Gyro says:

    Given the large number of people saying, “Don’t they know they are making terrible license decisions?” I am going to guess they don’t know. In fact, I would go so far as to surmise that they have no earthly clue what they’re doing and have no idea how to actually make money off of the game.

    I thought I heard a while back that GW was bought by some investment group. It’s entirely possible all these decisions are being made by people with MBAs where brains should be.

    • Syra says:

      To be fair all of these games are churning a profit and are increasing awareness of the brand, even if they are shit. How much actual harm they are doing beyond irritating the crap out of their present fanbase is up for debate.

  17. fuggles says:

    Bizarre and no doubt over priced. Ai aside, I probably could have done this in dawn of war, heck I made risk:
    http://dawnofwar.filefront.com/file/Risk_20;95586

    Now 40k risk would be cool, or any new and sensible 40k game really.

    • Vacuity729 says:

      You mean something like the campaign for Final Liberation? But better?

  18. LennyLeonardo says:

    Necromunda Cluedo! Game of Life Gorkamorka! Hero Quest Chequers! *huff, huff* Screwball Scramble Space Crusade! *huff*

    Collapses.

  19. lordkrekt says:

    Only playing if Black Templars aren’t allowed to have Bishops

    • Syra says:

      but bishops are priests… goodly zealous types. BT shouldn’t have psykers!

  20. kraken says:

    Coming soon: Angry Birds 40K.

    In the grim darkness of the future, there is only terrible licensing.

  21. Loyal_Viggo says:

    My message to GWHQ:

    W.T.F. is wrong with you people? Seriously, you persist in licensing your superb IP yet nothing since DOW1 has been remotely good.

    What is it you don’t understand about people who like your products?

    Just make the following, and my displeasure shall subside:

    Necromunda (X-com style, original X-com not the weak sauce remake)
    Battlefleet Gothic (RTS style, think SINS)
    Man’O'War
    WH40 TBS

    That is all. You may go.

    • Laurentius says:

      DOW II was at least remotely good, at least many pople thinks so, me included.
      BTW, anyone with the tip how to beat final boss in Chaos Rising ? I’m like stuck in this missin for 3 years or something, would be nice to actually finish the campagin.

      • kalsonic12 says:

        I for one think that DoW II lacks the fluidity of DoW 1. And yes, the DoW 2 experience does feel subpar to me.

    • Shuck says:

      A friend who’s an experienced game developer with some pretty well-known titles under his belt approached GW to do a digital version of WH40K- their response was that they didn’t want to do anything that might eat into their physical miniatures sales. This is true even for the particular games that they’re not even making anymore. So absolutely nothing like the table-top game will be approved. Meanwhile, their physical miniature sales are down, they’re closing down their stores, the prices on the minis are increasingly ridiculous (to the point where it’s quickly reaching the point where it’s cheaper to 3D print some of your own), and they’re licensing the property to every small company that’s willing to shell out the money, regardless of quality, diluting the brand. We’ll see if they’re around long enough to realize the folly of their ways.

  22. TomxJ says:

    Another thing;
    That trailer was really good, as were both the Dawn of war Intros. Why can’t they make a half decent cgi movie either?

    • mpk says:

      http://ultramarinesthemovie.com/

      The epitome of half-decent.

    • Gap Gen says:

      I mean, the Dawn of War intro was also really stupid – let’s charge out of a fixed defensive position right before reinforcements show up! But yeah, for spectacle it’s great. And in fact, the plot of 40K is pretty good compared to other sci fi stuff; the idea of a doomed, repressive humanity is nicely done, even if there is schlock in there. I guess it’s partly based around a bunch of other stuff, like Dune, the Catholic Church and early European colonialism, etc. I guess the issue is partly just money – stuff like Spiderman has repeated sequels in the cinemas, and that’s about a kid bitten by a spider who fights crime.

  23. steviebops says:

    GW use their licence in weird, weird ways.

    I still want a 40k game that plays like Valkyiria Chronicles.

    • Moraven says:

      Valkyria Chronicles is a first party Sega game and they own Relic now and I think the Dawn of War license still. They just need to get a license expansion and make it happen. Squad Command was ok but not great.

  24. wyrm4701 says:

    I was really hoping for Warhammer: Uno. Maybe next time…

  25. Continuity says:

    OK that’s it, I’m calling Exterminatus on this whole thread.

  26. apa says:

    FOR THE EMP… king?

  27. Heliocentric says:

    BOLT GUNS ARE NOT ASSAULT RIFLES

    They are tiny missile launchers, each bolt is capable of blowing a hole in a imperial tank, or anything Orks make if it hits the weaker side its a fierce weapon.

    More Dakka please.

    • FFabian says:

      “each bolt is capable of blowing a hole in a imperial tank”

      No – but I appreciate your effort in spreading imperial propaganda about the battle prowess of the Adeptus Astartes.

      • Phasma Felis says:

        Now, he did say “if it hits the weaker side.” Bolters can glance AV10 on a 6. For all the good it’ll do you…

    • Phasma Felis says:

      They do exactly one point of damage more than basic assault rifles (“autoguns” have the same stats as lasguns).

      And one *less* than the Tau’s standard infantry pulse rifles. FOR THE GREATER GOOD, MOTHERFUCKERS.

  28. Renegade says:

    If I wanted to play 40K chess I would just grab my minitures from the back of my wardrobe and standard chess board….

  29. bstard says:

    Makes me think bout that Bottom episode, culture.

  30. sabasNL says:

    I think they came a month too late with their April Fools joke