Warmachine Coming To PC With Warmachine: Tactics

The Steampunk-mechs and magical warriors of the Warmachine miniatures universe will soon be making their debut on Mac and PC, at least if the $385,016 (at the time of writing) raised by their first day of Kickstarting is anything to go by. The devs want $550k for their project, which aims to deliver “a squad-level, turn-based tactics game featuring both a single-player campaign and online synchronous and asynchronous head-to-head multiplayer options.” That sounds delicious indeed, but the game’s world – a Steampunky fantasy in which Warcasters (armoured wizards) and Warjacks (magic mechs) vie for control of a fantasy world – is that commands most attention. The team behind it is full of veterans, and the art direction of Matt Wilson retains the distinct whiff of someone who knows exactly what to do. Take a look at their pitch video, below. I’m certain this one is going to need any particular assistance to blast past the finishing line.


  1. Wurstwaffel says:

    This looks really slick.

    • Ultra Superior says:

      But….but where is WARHAMMER 40K ???

      • Mirqy says:

        on a table top. where it shall remain.

        • Snidesworth says:

          Because GW’s management are fools. FOOLS.

          Maybe this will prompt them to stop worrying about losing miniature sales and authorise a game similar (if not identical) to 40k or WFB. Or Necromunda. Or Mordenheim. Or Gorkamorka.

          • Jams O'Donnell says:

            Now that they’ve killed off Specialist Games they really have nothing to lose by putting out a video game version of something like Necromunda. Not that they’ll ever do it, of course.

          • Snidesworth says:

            I’d take anything Necromunda based. A proper conversion would be ideal, but I’d be happy with an RPG or even a f2p shooter in the vein of Blacklight Retribution.

          • wodin says:

            If I win the lottery I’m going to star up a development company that will tap into the Tabletop Genre including all the things that make the hobby exciting\interesting like painting and customization, building your army up etc etc.

            I’d cover several genres (Fantasy,Dark Ages, WW1 and WW2,Steampunk, Sci Fi) but use the same engine and modified for the particular game. I’d introduce aspects that couldn’t play well on a tabletop as you’d get bogged down in working out the rules..like detailed LOS\LOF\detailed damage modeling from different severity of wounds and different areas hit to detailed damage modelling,armour (different slopes and materials)component and tech damage i.e targeting systems, ammo storage or life support systems etc, Ballistic modeling,Destructible environment, Detailed Leader or Commander stats, Medics and medic facilities (from casualty clearing station to some futuristic mobile hospital unit that can do cyber repairs on battlefield) …I could go on and on.

          • Ultra Superior says:

            You better buy those lottery tickets!

          • Reapy says:

            And I would buy that game good sir.

          • Arglebargle says:

            You’re making me want to buy lottery tickets!

      • Makariel says:

        I think you forget


        Perhaps a step in the right direction. Still waiting for Necromunda though.

        • kilkrazy says:

          I think i can hear GW sharpening their chain swords already

  2. Pich says:

    Call me when they make an Infinity game.

  3. wodin says:


    I’ve mentioned a fair few times there is a big gap in the market for tabletop wargames to be converted to the PC..or at least follow similar gameplay..I’d also sell new units as DLC (Just like buying new units for the tabletop game)..plus make sure there is a paint and customization section to the game..where you can swap heads..change weapons and paint up your armies..

    I’d also like to see and engineer aspect where you can mess around with different weapons and power outputs etc to modify the mechs or whatever it is by experimenting in a designtech part of the game, use actual physics and ballistics so someone could really design some superb units, change the leg structure of a mech (maybe a new leg shape would cause the mech to move quicker)..increase it’s power output..

    • coldvvvave says:

      Yeah it looks DOWnright awesome.

    • 123kings says:

      You sir, is quite a dreamer!

      • wodin says:

        I am..but hey dreamings free..

        • Bishop says:

          Micro-transactions aren’t, if only you could charge money for peoples dreams…..I guess there’s X factor where you’re belittled for having dreams.

    • Serpok says:

      Yes! I do not mind murdering people for an online version of Arkham, Pandemic or Survive – escape from atlantis.

  4. RedViv says:

    Seems like a sweet team, and I bloody love Iron Kingdoms. Count me in.

  5. Echo says:

    Too bad there’s no Cyriss caster in the Kickstarter, but then again that faction had its official release just yesterday. Waiting for my Convergence battlebox in the mail!

    Trying real hard to resist throwing all my rupees at them, but I’ll probably toss in enough for the Khador caster, since I play the totally-not-Russians.

    edit: and I just noticed that the Kickstarter alternative skins for Khador looks like how I’m painting mine. Ow, my wallet!

  6. orange says:

    Still unsure if this is a Warhammer game or not.

    • Chris D says:

      It’s not. Warmachine is a separate franchise.

    • Werthead says:

      Given their history, expect Games Workshop to be rolling out the legal battlewagon imminently.

      • Chris D says:

        Unlikely. Games Workshop don’t have the monopoly on fantasy miniatures games (It just seems that way) and Warmachine has been existing in it’s own right for a number of years already.

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          distantlurker says:

          “unlikely”? they sued some guy for using the term ‘space marine’… did you mean it’s unlikely they’d ‘win’? ‘cos we can pretty much assume they’re going to C&D

          • Chris D says:

            If GW had the ability and inclination they’d have shut down the tabletop version already. This is not a new game.

        • Werthead says:

          That’s true. But a computer version will raise the game to a higher profile, and GW may judge it to be too close to the authorised WARHAMMER turn-based game that’s in the offing.

          They’d never win and lose more goodwill than ever, but it is definitely GW’s MO.

          • wiper says:

            Considering that it’s profile in the wargaming world is very high – Warmachine is comfortably the second most popular miniature wargame out there, has been for years, and encroaches heavily into GW’s userbase – I imagine if they were going to sue them they’d have done so a long, long time ago.

            Not to mention the fact where it’s actually highly distinct from Games Workshop (in terms of setting, design, units and mechanics), in a way that the direct remakes of GW properties as computer games/the ‘unofficial add-ons/units’ by Chapterhouse weren’t.

            And, well, if GW were going to go for any wargame company for ‘taking inspiration’ from them it would probably be Mantic Games. They aren’t actually quite as litigation-happy as they’re made out to be, generally sticking to targets which explicitly sell on being versions of their pre-existing designs.

        • Syra says:

          You peeps give GW a hard time but really they do what every big corporation has to do in respect of it’s own IP.

          Why would GW attempt to sue privateer press, they are like one of the only major competitors in the wargaming space (btw they have been around for donkeys years now and gw hasnt touched them) who actually makes a product that is not a carbon copy of one of gws games. Though this whole ‘gotta have a fantasy and scifi version of all the games (warmahordes) is stupid imo’, and their model quality is vastly inferior to GW – they do have much better competitive tournament support and such.

          There’s maybe 4 ‘big’ games in this space for sci fi tabletop gaming with hundreds of little systems and make no mistake GW DOES have a monopoly (over 25% of market share), that gives them power over pricing and stuff but it doesnt naturally make them dicks.

      • Bhazor says:

        Picturing lawyers in battleship thick body armour slamming down in drop pods and then politely handing the receptionist a cease and desist.

  7. Nater says:

    Hoping it’s not like that bullshit Confrontation game which could have been 1000% better if they had made the single player follow the Dogs of War manual and the multiplayer more like the tabletop version of the game.

    This game looks cool, I just hope there is a multiplayer mode or even a vs bots mode that plays out similar to the tabletop game.

  8. trjp says:

    As someone who finds tabletop/board gaming endlessly tedious – I’m still in, that looks fantastic.

    That said, they’re not asking for much money to make the sort of game they’re talking about – they’re none-too-specific about how much they’ve done already – hmmmm

    If they get £3m – you might see a good game…

  9. Bhazor says:

    That really really really really looks like Warhammer.

    • dmoe says:

      No kidding. It’s really blatant.

    • TehTR says:

      by which you mean it looks like generic gothic fantasy with bulky armor? but that’s not true warmachine is generic STEAMPUNK fantasy with bulky armor.

      • dmoe says:


      • Makariel says:

        is steampunk the new zombie apocalypse?

        • TsunamiWombat says:

          Considering there hasn’t been a blockbuster summer movie and two triple A games about it every year for the last three years, no. Steampunk has a long way to go before reaching that kind of saturation.

          • Syra says:

            Steampunk has been just below the surface of mainstream EVERYTHING for the last few years, steampunk is the indie ass hipster of fantasy fiction. There have been a few of steam punk blockbusters and tripleAs they jsut don’t draw attention to the fact that they are steampunk.

        • BooleanBob says:

          Broaden it to *punk and we’re getting closer. But not yet.

    • Echo says:

      Being a guy who plays both, they don’t really look or feel anything alike. The Kickstarter video doesn’t really show anything at all.

      • Reapy says:

        What is warmachine like in terms of the combat? Is it going to be something like xcom? Do units have high hitpoints or are they disposable? How big are the battles etc?

        Wondering if this will finally be the tabletop system that will realize that they can make more money by living on the pc.

        • Thingus says:

          Generally, it’s down to you;you can have squishy infantry who die fairly easily; or solid, difficult-to-kill warjacks with things like individual system damage.
          The interesting thing about the game is that the warcaster (wizardy-general person) has a huge impact on how you play; warjacks are only really useful as long as the caster is concentrating on them, and the more they’re thnking about robots, the less attention they have to cast spells of their own.

        • Syra says:

          The battles are much smaller and quicker, supposedly the balance is much tighter, Privateer actually support tournament play. This in comparison to 40k, which can be anything you want it to be scalewise, and the rules are much larger and get a bit unweildy when you have thousands of models on the table apocalypse style, and balance is only vaguely a consideration (though they do ‘patch’ codecies very quickly of late, GW having just discovered the internet or something).

        • Panda with issues... says:

          People aren’t really doing a great job of articulating the differences between GWs games and Privateer Press’.

          The most significant difference is in order of activation. Both follow an ‘I go, you go’ turn pattern, but a lot of the similarities end there.
          In the vast majority of GW games, your turn is split into different phases, where you move all your troops in the movement phase, then move on to the shooting phase where they all shoot, then the melee phase etc. With the PP game systems, you activate each unit individually, and take the entire turn with the unit. For example, you have units A, B and C. You might chose to activate unit B first, moving it, performing any actions it is able to do (possibly shooting or melee attacks), then that unit’s turn is over, and you would chose the next unit you want to activate. This makes for a much more tactical game, requiring far greater thought in terms of order of operations. Many times when learning the game, I’ve moved a unit only to inadvertently block a movement path for a second unit I was relying on, or I’ve moved a unit before remembering I wanted to cast a spell to improve that unit’s movement speed etc.

          In a lot of ways, mechanically, the game is more similar to the old versions of Epic 40000 or Blood Bowl where you took it in turns to activate detachments or players, rather than the classic Warhammer Fantasy or 40000.

          Key in the main Privateer Press game system is the concept of a Warcaster or Warlock. This unit shares only superficial similarities to the general of a Warhammer army. The Warcaster is far more important than that. They are the cog and the battery which makes your army work. These figures have statistics similar to other units in the game, but also have a focus (or fury) stat as well as a spell list, and a single use per game ‘feat’. In the case of a Warcaster, the focus stat will be somewhere between 5 and an absurd 10 (though typically 6-7 is much more common). This focus is a critical resource, used to cast spells (or keep certain spells going throughout the game), but it is also used to increase the model’s accuracy or damage output via physical attacks, or spells, or to increase resistance to damage. Additionally, it is also used to manipulate the actions of your Warjacks. Without focus, Warjacks are far less effective than their statistics would lead you to believe, with sufficient focus they can perform extreme actions and produce significant damage output. The distance in which you can allocate focus to manipulate your warjacks is determined by your focus stat also (Normally Focus x 2).

          A critical part of learning the game is learning how to allocate your Warcaster’s limited focus, when to do so in each turn, have your warcaster positioned in a position where they can still control their warjacks and cast their important spells, whilst being safe from reprisal, considering that the game is essentially over if the Warcaster is dead. Killing your opponent’s warcaster will effectively end the game, even if you were in a previously invidious position. Functionally this can make the game inherently more exciting than GWs products, but can also lead to the case where a single mistake can cost you the game before it has really had a chance to start.

          The limitations on focus lead to difficult decisions in terms of how many warjacks you think you can effectively support in an army. This factor often led to the game’s slightly derogatory name of ‘Infantrymachine’ since infantry requires no focus support, and can act independently. Hordes uses fury rather than focus, which is mechanically a bit different, and allows armies to run much more in the way of Warbeasts (the warjack equivalent).

          Other important differences in gameplay revolve around the fact that PP games are based around a 2D6 system, rather than a D6 plus modifier table system like GWs.

          In terms of scale, the game is smaller than the GW offerings, and is more of a skirmish game, rather than large scale battles. Most people seem to play at 35-50 point level, which would probably include 1-3 warjacks, and 3-5 units and a few other bits and bobs per side.

          Because the Warcaster is such an important piece, they dictate strategy and list building, and swapping one out for another will radically change an army’s effectiveness and play style. For this reason, units which are highly effective under one commander my be less optimal under another.

          In terms of release schedule, PP operate far differently from the GW ‘release an army of new models’, leave it to rot with no support for 7 years unless it’s Space Nazis’. PP release books on a ~ yearly basis which contain new models for each army at the same time, as well as progressing the fluff. This seems to help to prevent power creep, and stops people being left out in the cold with armies that are defunct due to newer releases/new rulesets.

          The ruleset for PP is pretty well written, and is probably more suited for competitive play than any of GWs with the exception of Blood Bowl. Functionally, in my own opinion due to the way some of the rules are written, it can lead to some stupid and wonky play such as charging your own units in the back to gain extra movement distance. Cut throat competitive players see nothing wrong with this, treating it as a game mechanic, and whether you want to do this sort of stuff all depends on your own style of play and who you play with. As with most games, if you play with players who share your game ‘values’, you’ll get along fine, whether that’s ultracompetitive or casual and fluffy. The Warmachine game seems to attract a much more competitive crowd though for sure, and the usual boring netlisting still takes place, probably to an even greater extent, due to the granularity of the point system, and the propensity for people to choose units that are effective without warcaster support due to focus limitations.

          I played both GW main systems for a long time, and migrated to PP 2 or 3 years ago, as well as dabbling in Infinity, FoW, Maifaux etc. I still play blood bowl fairly regularly. I’ve always been more of a painter than a player.

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      phuzz says:

      Even the logo looks similar, I’d be expecting a boarding party of Games Workshop’s highly trained attack lawyers to be beaming down any time now…

      • Gentleman_Jellyfish says:

        Privateer Press has been around for over a decade.

    • DarkFarmer says:

      Myeh, only if you never head into a local game store and check out some of the tabletop RPGs, boardgames, and miniatures wargames. “Big Weapons and Shoulderpads, Colorful and Cartoony” has been the art direction of pretty much everything fantasy for the last 20 years or so.

      Also some of the team from GW’s “silver age” such as miniatures painter Mike McVey defected to Privateer so there was some shared talent going on as well.

  10. c-Row says:

    Looks interesting, and turn-based strategy games are always good in my book, but why do I have to pledge an additional $5 to receive a digital manual that should be included anyway?

    • Snidesworth says:

      Yeah, that’s actually really strange. My only guess is that they’re using the same rules as the tabletop game and the manual is also the core rulebook. It’s still dumb that you can receive a copy of the game and not have the rulebook included as part of the standard package.

      • Gentleman_Jellyfish says:

        It’s been confirmed that the video game will not be a direct port of the tabletop. It’s more along the lines of XCOM than the actual WARMACHINE and HORDES games.

  11. Jenks says:

    Came for some AC/DC, was disappointed

    It appears to play a lot like X-Com EU, which to a guy who prefers gaming input devices over word processing ones, is a good thing.

  12. Chillz says:

    Uh,oh I got hyper-hyped for a game again. I really hope they make this right because it seems freakin amazing! Cannot wait : )

  13. Schmudley says:

    I thought that there was already a Warmachine game in progress? What happened to that one?

    This does look pretty awesome. Hope that they can reach the goal to bring in the Menites quickly. Nothing like controlling an army of suicidal, pyromaniac zealots who get stronger as their comrades all die horribly.

    • bockzcar says:

      That was also being done by Whitemoon Dreams. I remember being excited for that one too, although honestly I was little disappointed that it was going to be just a straight up 3rd person actiony type game and not something more tactical…

      Looks like they’re reading my mind! :D


  14. Koozer says:

    My god, I came in here to make a snarky comment about how it looks like a steampunk 40K, but now that would just make me feel cruel.

    In Warmachine’s defence (and to play devil’s advocate), exaggerating proportions and having over-the-top decorative bits is pretty much required when your little fantasy fellas are 5 centimetres tall. To the untrained eye, TF2 probably looks pretty similar to WoW.

  15. Jams O'Donnell says:

    As a recently-converted* Warmachine/Hordes nut I’m super-excited about this — I just wish I could find some information anywhere about whether there’s any kind of skirmish vs AI to allow you to play multiplayer-style games on your own. I think I want more single-player content than just the campaign.

    I can’t decide whether I want to pledge enough to grab one of the caster models or not — it’d help if they all had 3D prototypes, if not actual sculpts.

    * How recent? My first guy is not yet finished. You can’t beat a setting that has a faction of drunken Scottish trolls!

    • Reapy says:

      I can only guess due to having a SP campaign the AI to run the opposing units must be present, therefore they should be able to implement a skirmish AI as well? I guess?

  16. kwyjibo says:

    “Steampunky fantasy in which Warcasters (armoured wizards) and Warjacks (magic mechs) vie for control of a fantasy world” – This really commands the least attention. Just look at the thing, does it feel remotely original?

    Can’t go wrong with turn based tactics though, and asynchronous multiplayer to boot. Really wish developers would get back to 2D though, all this garnish just gets in the way.

  17. mkraven says:

    Don’t want to sound pessimist or mean but… This REALLY looks like a warhammer ripoff.

    • Kollega says:

      Don’t want to sound pessimist or mean, but Warhammer itself is a ripoff of Lord of The Rings spiked with liberal helpings of pointless grimdark, and WH40k is a ripoff of Dune, Foundation, Starship Troopers, Alien, and god knows what else, spiked with even more pointless grimdark.

      • Jim Rossignol says:

        The “pointless grimdark” is the whole point.

        If you don’t get why it’s like that then you’re really, genuinely missing out on why Games Workshop is the way that it is.

        • TsunamiWombat says:

          I feel like WH40k’s pointless grimdark worked better when the game was psuedo-satirical and comedic in nature, like it was originally. GW has since drunk their own cool-aid and realized they could make more money by ratcheting down on the seriousity. As a net result, there are less teleporting suicide bombing goblins and giant mushroom eating super intelligent slug monsters, but the Grim Dark begins to reach levels that are difficult to take seriously -because it was never intended to be taken seriously-.

          That being said, huge fan of WH40k (though not GW, awful company in it’s home branch)

          • Jim Rossignol says:

            >like it was originally

            That goes in phases. Look at Lost & The Damned, Rogue Trader etc, and they were pretty serious (and original as far as that goes). The point of it, though, is absurdity. It is exaggerating the things that make up the genre it is feeding on. Whether that’s with comedy squigs or ultra-dark inquisitorial horror, it’s basically all a joke.

          • Syra says:

            I hear you Jim, and it’s not just phases but it’s what you want to make of it. Different authors have been doing different things in the space over the years and you get some off the wall weird shit from good old rogue trader and second edition (I can’t say I miss the farting space marines and sexualised genestealer cults) mixed in with the played straight saga of the heresy.

            There’s room for all kinds of stories and that’s why it’s such an interesting universe, they have brilliant detective novels (Eisenhorn and the inquisitor trilogies being masterful scifi) and they have grimdark spacebro stories which of equal cringe value to gears of war, but in a good way. A lot of the comic relief got relegated to orks along the way though; it’s clear the GW, as they have been rewriting the lore to formalise it, have taken a little out of the self referentially absurd nature of the humour.

      • RedViv says:

        I declare that those who abuse the phrase “grimdark” to make fun of things shall henceforth be summarily executed.

        • jrodman says:

          What a grimdark political outlook you have!

          (Ooh! Ooh! pick me! pick me!)

          • lowprices says:

            Report to the nearest Commissar for… re-education, Heretic.

  18. phlebas says:

    Nice visuals – things actually look like animated miniatures rather than real things.

  19. Soulstrider says:


    I love Warmachine (despite actually never having played the tabletop), can’t wait to play it. Though I am bit worried regarding the studio, have they ever done something before?

  20. Moraven says:

    The red guy looks like a Space Marine, but other than that its not that similiar to 40k. The Steampunk and more focus on magic make it distinct. It has more similiarities with other steampunk, steam mecha worlds if anything

    Valkyria Chronicles, Final Fantasy Tactics, and the X-COM franchise. 3 Awesome games they mention.

    Single Player campaign. Thank you for not being multiplayer only.

    This is how to do a Kickstarter. Now hopefully they can deliver on time. August 2014 gives them a year.

  21. TsunamiWombat says:

    This isn’t a Warhammer ripoff, internet people. This game has been around for YEARS and is it’s own beast. GW does not have a copywrite on over the top, gothic design. Nor is the universe grimdark, and strictly speaking lays somewhere between Sci-Fi and Fantasy.

    Is it Warhammer INSPIRED? Aesthetically, yes, but considering how many sources GW has blatantly ripped off since Warhammers inception back in the 80’s, you may as well start complaining about how Warhammer is a ripoff of everything from Starship Troopers to Rambo and Judge Dredd.

    TL;DR, this isn’t going to get C&D’d, it’s not a cash in, it’s not copypasta, pls do your research.

    • Echo says:

      Heck, GW’s interpretation of Chaos originally came straight from the books of Michael Moorcock, right down to the symbol of Chaos Undivided.

      link to en.wikipedia.org

    • mLocke says:

      Queue a bunch of Brits claiming this is a ripoff of WH40k. Comparing Warhammer to Warmachine is like comparing a Mercedes Benz SLK 55 AMG to a Toyota AE86. They both are fun to drive, but one costs a faction of the other before you’re able to start driving. Seriously, does anyone remember when Warhammer used to have different stats between pewter and plastic parts?

      Warhammer is basically whoever has the most money, wins. Warmachine is a far more tactical game, and about a thousand times more affordable, just look at the cost of starting army boxes, which give you everything you need to start playing the game.

      I for one am looking forward to a version of Warmachine that doesn’t involve hours of inhaling toxic fumes and trying to get paints to dry when it’s only 10F (-12C) outside.

      • Nick says:

        “Warhammer is basically whoever has the most money, wins”

        What utter bullshit.

  22. lomaxgnome says:

    This looks like yet another Kickstarter where having way too many physical rewards is going to consume a huge part of the “donations.” It’s going to be interesting to see how much they get wrapped up in stretch goals and the like and increasing scope.

    • Reapy says:

      Though perhaps not as bad since they are a miniature company that already has the facilities set up and knowledge of cost to ship said physical things, so hopefully they have accounted for…

    • Carda39 says:

      Given that it’s Privateer Press, they’ve already got the infrastructure in place to handle creating as many of the limited edition minis as they need. If anything concerns me, it’s the digital side of things more so than the physical.

      Honestly, I thought more people on the UK side here would be complaining about the high shipping costs. Instead I found that a lot of folks seemed to be genuinely ignorant of GW’s primary competitor who’s been in the tabletop wargame business for just over a decade.

  23. Iskariot says:

    I had hoped this would be more like the first Dawn of War.

    To each his own.

  24. infernalmachine says:

    A turn based fantasy tactics game where you play as steampunk mages? Count me in!

  25. Zepp says:

    Single player campaign with FEMALE main protagonist? NEVER!!!! NEVER!!! NEVER!!! To arms my brothers!

  26. Josh W says:

    This video is so markety it’s rediculous, so many cliche’s, in massed rapid fire. In fact there’s some things that seem like cliche’s that I’ve never actually seen before.

    Warmachine seems a reasonably good game, so it doesn’t matter, but I’d love to edit the video down along the obvious joins with the marketing stuff:

    “I’m the head of privateer press, and ten 10 years ago I made this game…. now we … are making a computer game… “

  27. King Eternity says:

    I was excited for this but after looking into it a bit more seems like it’s not really trying to recreate the tabletop game, it’s basically an XCOM clone?

    That’s not terrible, if it’s done well, but it’s not going to scratch my Warmachine itch.

  28. projectdelta says:

    link to werhackers.net
    guys you can already download warmachine! download it here
    link to werhackers.net