Cyclonic! Space Hulk: Ascension Edition Announced

Salve Quintus!

Full Control’s grand dream for Space Hulk was to recreate the beloved Games Workshop boardgame. It got off to a rocky start. Patching did a lot for bugs (though can’t change that it doesn’t have that cardboard feel), and today They say it’s a fairly solid adaptation. So having made Space Hulk, Full Control want to make a different Space Hulk.

Today they announced Space Hulk: Ascension Edition, a standalone new version boshing in a load of RPG bits, new stuff, and Ultramarines, who do at least bring Cyclone missile launchers to compensate for being so dull.

Ascension Edition’s main change is whacking in an RPG layer, with squads built of characters who earn XP and level up attributes and skills and whatnot. Hugely massively importantly, Terminators are customisable now, with all sorts of shiny bits to change the look of their armour–tabletop heritage and all that. Also you can rename them, to see your best mate horribly slaughtered. Other new things: combi-weapons, short mini-missions, genestealer variants, and those Ultramarines.

It seems to include all that DLC with the base game, packing 100 missions across Blood Angel, Space Wolves, and Ultramarine campaigns.

Space Hulk: Ascension Edition is due some time between October and the end of the year. Trailer:


Top comments

  1. ThomasLund says:

    Free? No.

    But yes - we have already planned loyalty discounts for existing owners, so that they get a choice.

    Beware this game does not replace Space Hulk "the digital boardgame". Its a separate more video game approach with different rules and removal of boardgame elements.
  1. Rolento says:

    I enjoy playing as the space smurfs, as my painted 40k army will testify. Which reminds me i need to get them out of storage….

  2. Gog Magog says:

    Personally I always preferred the Umber Egrets.

    • DrollRemark says:

      I haven’t read any of his stuff, but people do rave about The Name of The Rose. Maybe I should give it a try.

  3. iago says:

    How about giving this version for free to those, who already bought the first one? Or -75% price reduction coupon on Steam maybe?
    Bah…. not gonna happen….

  4. ThomasLund says:

    Free? No.

    But yes – we have already planned loyalty discounts for existing owners, so that they get a choice.

    Beware this game does not replace Space Hulk “the digital boardgame”. Its a separate more video game approach with different rules and removal of boardgame elements.

    • Rolento says:


    • Optimaximal says:

      So will buyers of this new ‘Game of A Year’ release include both versions?

    • Lemming says:

      While you’re chiming in here Thomas:

      Will the Genestealers still attack with a ‘slash claw’ effect and Terminators topple over like narcoleptics, or are we going to get some proper attack animations? And are the storm bolter sound effects going to be ‘meatifyed’?

      • ThomasLund says:

        Hey Lemming,

        Almost all animations are being touched up on to make things more epic and bloody. The death animations will get a round as well, but its not determined yet if we get ragdolls working without it looking completely fucked up – or if we need to hand animate deaths.

        All sfx, vfx, lights, shaders etc have been or are given a improvement pass as well to utilize PC platform more, and the entire menu and ingame UI is being overhauled too.


        • Napoleon15 says:

          Will any of these changes carry over to the more boardgame type version of the game? I don’t know how this Ascension edition will work, but it’d be awesome to have more violent death animations etc whilst playing with the current ruleset we have at the moment. I like the faithfulness to the board game a lot, so I’d love to see it get a fresh lick of paint without having to play with stuff like rocket launchers on the terminators.

          • Lemming says:

            That was my concern as well. Thanks for replying, Thomas. I would suggest scripted animations are better than ragdoll (like the original Dawn of War) even in the vanilla Space Hulk. My main concern is that the Genestealer’s death-dealing wasn’t really conveyed well. One of the positives of having a video game version of a board game is to truly visualise things the real board game can’t.

        • dancingcrab says:

          Most important question – how long until I can play Deathwing??

  5. Chris Cunningham says:

    Given that Rab (apparently the only games writer actually prepared to give an honest assessment of the game the first time around, rather than regurgitating press releases and fanboying over the entire concept) hasn’t chipped back in to say whether any of the post-release patches have helped, I’m still deeply sceptical. Also somewhat odd that the “rocky start” link goes not to Rab’s piece but to Alec Meer’s not-really-mea-culpa.

    • JimboDeany says:

      I’ve only played it post-patch and I have to say that it’s a nice game now. I’ve not noticed any bugs and it appears to play as expected.

    • jonahcutter says:

      That WIT was quite the clunker. The video game appeared to play pretty much like the boardgame does, it not actually being the boardgame (and thus lacking another in-the-flesh player) seemingly his core problem with it. Well, dur… it’s not the boardgame. Pretty dumb criticism really.

      His other complaints came across as rather nitpicky or not-a-problems for many other players, like he was casting about for things to dislike. RPS perhaps shouldn’t have had a boardgame partisan review the electronic version of a beloved boardgame.

      The bugs have been fixed afaik.

      • Chris Cunningham says:

        Ahhh, the guy who had never played the board game (and yet for some reason paid £25 for an adaptation of it) returns to whine that a guy who had been playing it for nearly 25 years wasn’t qualified to compare the two. Yeeaah.

        Look, it’s not difficult. There are people who will happily throw money at games simply so that they can click on a Terminator. Fair enough. But there are others for whom a board game adaptation has to be at least as compelling to play as the board game for it to work. And that requires more than just copying all the game logic.

        And looking back on that WIT, it’s still remarkable how much flack Rab got from people who had never played the board game but who still decided to part with over twenty quid for an indie adaptation of it, and then (or, in more than one case, without playing it at all) sat pounding away paragraphs of text about how wrong he was (hilariously in some cases referring to him as a fanboy, as if throwing £25 at a game that couldn’t be completed simply because it had a Space Marine on the cover is perfectly sensible).

      • Bull0 says:

        Suuuuuuuch bollocks. He listed loads of valid criticisms that are still present in the game. I’ll be surprised but pleased if this iteration is meaningfully better.

      • PancakeWizard says:

        The fact that it’s almost 1:1 the board game is the problem. There is no point making a video game of said board game unless you take advantage of the different medium. Things should’ve been far more animated than they were. We should’ve been captivated by the atmosphere, effects and movement – but we weren’t, because it felt like moving incredibly stiff figures around a board.

  6. Stormworm says:

    Ultramarines aka the best chapter. They get a lot of flak though. Its not easy being one of the best chapters and most honourable. :)

  7. Smoky_the_Bear says:

    Games Workshop, STOP with the shitty 40k licenses please. Give it back to Relic or whatever now consists of the majority of their people and ONLY THEM. NOW!

    • Nenjin says:

      Said as though Relic can do no wrong……like DoW II going from an RTS to RTT MoBA-like garbage with a max of 20 or so units on the screen at one time?

      If you think DoW II is somehow a better adaption of the table top games than Space Hulk was…..well, the Emperor weeps for your soul.

      Space Hulk as a game was fine. Some clunky bits, but what game adapted directly from a table top doesn’t have those? The fan reaction to Space Hulk had me face palming so much I still have red marks to this day. And I felt pretty bad for Full Control. I felt like they didn’t get a fair shake at all.

      • stupid_mcgee says:

        I never understood why so many people fawned over DoW2. It was a bad game. Really bad. The singleplayer is beyond boring and multiplayer was tedious, at best. I really wanted to like DoW2 and its expansions, but I just couldn’t. The core game mechanic was just absolute rubbish. Oh boy! I get to control… 5 guys? Oh, they have squadmates! That I can’t control… No base building? Okay… Because having you guy run back to a relay point and wait for them to heal and respawn more squadmates is so much more engaging than base building, I guess.

        Literally, the only thing I actually enjoyed about DoW2 was the Last Stand mode. Everything else about the DoW2 series is complete and absolute crap. Even the leveling up and obtaining new items was imlemented in an incredibly mediocre way.

        Even with Space Marine, which had some really awesome high points, was overall a very lackluster game. The environments were terrible, the levels were highly repetitive and some sections were pointlessly walking around from one push-button to another. There are very little moves you can execute, and so the entire carnage and spectacle, as well done as it was, quickly loses its cool factor after you see the same animation for the thousandth time.

        I like Relic, I really do, but they are by far from perfect and they have produced some clunkers with the WH40k license, as well.

      • buzzmong says:

        Wot Nenjin said.

        DoW II was enjoyable for what it was, but it wasn’t as good as DoW. I wouldn’t say it was a good game either; it was very short, had very few maps and missions were a tad boring.

        I’ve only done a few missions in Space Hulk, and granted, that was a couple of months ago (aka, patched), but it seems fairly competent if not anything special.

      • PancakeWizard says:

        Relic can’t do no wrong as far as I’m concerned. They are still updating all their DoW games regularly now on Steam since the Sega takeover with multiplayer balancing and a new lobby system. That’s dedication. DoW2 is not an RTS like DoW1, but it’s a damn fine ARTS/RPG hybrid. They have a habit of wanting to try new and different things (every DoW expansion added new layers and changes for a start), and that’s ok.

        DoW2 was on the cusp of something great. We could’ve had a renaissance of iso-view sci-fi rpgs with real-time pausable cover-based combat and hot-swapped gear-based abilities – but alas, no one saw the potential.

      • Smoky_the_Bear says:

        Yeah honestly I think people just hate on DoW2 because it was different to DoW and people don’t like change. It was a good game with some interesting ideas. Just because it wasn’t what you wanted from the game does not make it bad.

    • Rindan says:

      Someone give me a fucking Mass Effect style game where you play as an inquisitor with a motley band of freaks. Do this. Do this now. Don’t you fools understand that there is no better way to explore the 40K universe?

      I’ll settle for a FPS where you are a lone marine tearing up an army in epic awesomeness. No, seriously, make the weapons have some impact, unlike the crap that was Space Marine. It should look more like a World War II western front game than anything else.

      It kills me the efficiency with which Gamers Workshop squanders 40K. 40K is doing its best in books, and the reason is because they are keeping their stupid incompetent hands off.

  8. HisDivineOrder says:

    This article does not do a great job of telling me what’s REMOVED to make this title standalone. It only says what’s added.

  9. WiggumEsquilax says:

    Not at all to take away from Space Hulk.

    But have Games Workshop ever gone on record, saying why they won’t license another full sized Warhammer 40K game? One complete with campaign, combined arms, and tabletop rules? They already did it once, with 1998’s Chaos Gate. It was an excellent game in it’s time.

    One would think that with contemporary demand for Warhammer 40K, such a game would be a given. So why isn’t it? All I’ve ever heard about it was hearsay, how they don’t want to undercut traditional sales. As though someone who can afford a $60 title, can also therefore be naturally expected to afford hundreds for books and figures. Makes no sense to me.

    • Bull0 says:

      Games Workshop pretty much never go on record about anything or listen to anything anyone has to say. They’re in slow decline; they’ve stayed afloat by gouging their dwindling player base. Sadly I don’t expect them to be around in a few years unless they’re bought out, maybe.

    • Nenjin says:

      This is just speculation but….I think the reason GWS hasn’t greenlit another full WH40K game is the scope of the IP and the time required.

      I don’t think GWS is interested in backing another 4 year bloated whale of a 40k game. They got burned several times on the MMO front doing that, and to them I think they see a SP 40k game costing $40 million and 4 years to make as too much of a gamble. They’d rather greenlight quick projects, games made in under a year and a half, so they can see profitability and turn around. I don’t think the current GWS overmind really values the IP in terms of how it could be presented in a PC game…..they only value in the IP in video games to the degree it can turn a quick profit.

      And so we end up with lane pushing 40k, instead of Warhammer 40k: Space Marine done to the hilt.

      • stupid_mcgee says:

        GW doesn’t pay anything when people make a game. They don’t front the cash, or anything. They get paid, not the other way around.

        When a studio wants to make a 40k game, they have to contact GW and get approval. GW can say yes or no, and if they do say, “yes,” then there is a fee that the developer, or publisher, must pay to use GW’s 40k license. Whether that game lives or fails is of no concern to GW, as they have, likely, already collected their fee. Some studios have it so that the fee is not paid unless the game releases. It all depends on the contractual obligations. GW may have certain stipulations within that contract, like that they have to give final approval for art styles and such, but GW does not fund the studios that make games based on GW licenses.

    • Saxon_UK1 says:

      Quite simply, why would anyone play the table top if you could just play a digital version. GW would Bankrupt themselves over night. To be fair though then they truly would only be a miniatures company as they claim, as only painters would buy their models.

      • pepperfez says:

        I think you (and GW – I suspect you’ve nailed their reasoning) underestimate the overlap between players of miniature games and hobbyists. After all, there are lots of perfectly enjoyable games that don’t require endless fiddly modeling, painting, and terrain, yet they chose one that does. Anyway, their’s already a pretty good substitute for official GW models in Chinese recasts, so you’d think moving to digital would be at least a bit more appealing.

        • stupid_mcgee says:

          I think it will happen eventually. As much as I love tabletop gaming, the reality is that it is dying. Magic and Pokeman and all of those card games are killing things like D&D. And while you might hear people crow about Pathfinder, the truth is that it is still miniscule compared to Magic and YugiOh and all of those other card games. WoTC (well, Hasbro, whatever) makes a tiny fraction of their revenue from D&D, yet the cost to produce goods for D&D and to produce the source material is severely more expensive than Magic. From a business’ financial perspective, D&D is a terrible investment, while Magic rakes in massive returns for very little investment.

          Maybe if the Total War: Warhammer game drums up some interest in the tabletop Warhammer Fantasy Battle game, GW will reconsider their stance of 1:1 digital conversions. I would think that there would be a greater chance of gaining new fans to the tabletop rather that losing tabletop fans to the digital version.

        • Smoky_the_Bear says:

          Honestly I think GW’s major concern is 3D printing. They will soon be at a point where people can get their own figures printed for much cheaper than they are selling them and that sees their profit margin town the bowl. Hence why I think they are pushing the 40k license out in as many directions as they can right now.

  10. racccoon says:

    Oh my god not another crawl, step forwards, backwards, sidewards, game! these games so suck.
    For christ sake they are Space hulks! give em a ship & let em rip through space or something, not unity corridors. bahh!
    what a waste of money the last one was, for me, anyway.. never again.