The Imperial March: Total Warhammer Campaign Vid

The more I see of Total Warhammer [official site], the more I know that I’m going to struggle to resist its charms even if it’s an imperfect creation. The latest dev walkthrough shows an Empire campaign walkthrough, picking up at the 71st turn and giving an overview of various features, and a tour of the current worldstate. There are Vampires on the borders and Chaos is encroaching from the north.

Given how much of my time XCOM 2 is taking up at the moment, I think I’d be distressed to switch to a game that didn’t let me rename characters, so it’s good to see that I’ll be able to name my generals after friends and foes. I’m also a fan of what we’ve seen of the interface so far – the build and upgrade menus are relatively plain but they’re also clean. I hope they don’t become any more cluttered before release.

It’s a shame we don’t get to see a transition from campaign map to battlefield here, mostly because I want to see the Empire taking on the Vampire Counts. I’m going to worry about that chap scouting in the Chaos lands as well – he doesn’t seem particularly well prepared to face whatever he might find up there.

He’s had fair warning though. The Undead and Chaos alike corrupt the land around them, and I like that imprinting of a faction onto the map. I always enjoy watching colours spread across the map when I play a Paradox grand strategy game, or zoom out to a distant Civ view. This feels like a more characterful version of the same.

We’ve already seen some Greenskin Campaign footage, which you can compare to the Empire playthrough by clicking here. I’ve also been a bit grumpy about the preorder situation, as were others. Creative Assembly responded to concerns a while ago, as we reported at the time.

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  1. Thurgret says:

    I eagerly await their move away from this functional but bland working title, to Total WAAAGHammer.

    This is actually the first campaign thing I’ve looked at for this, and I’m surprised at the way they’ve structured it. Not sure if it’s disappointed surprise or happy surprise yet. I was expecting the Empire to start as, you know, the Empire and so on, and for the campaign to be asymmetric, and diplomacy-free (with only the Empire and dwarves allied to each other). I’m not sure why I expected those things of a Total War game, since there’s no precedent whatsoever for it. What they have here might ultimately make for a better game, though.

  2. xyzzy frobozz says:

    Oh I do hope they get this right. It has the potential to be the best Total War yet.

    For those of us yearning for a really great Rome experience (and lets face it, who isn’t), check out the work going into the Ancient Empires mod for Attila. If it all goes to plan it looks like we’ll finally get the Rome Total War we always wished for.

    Very excited for TW:WH. I just really, really hope that they have learnt some lessons from previous releases. Won’t hold my breath.

  3. SAeN says:

    I really hope this is good, but I think I’m burnt out on the Total War style of game. I’ve tried to go back to several of them lately but just keep bouncing off them. Series needs a shakeup.

    • Sian says:

      This looks to be quite a shake-up, really. The factions have different mechanics, there’s magic and flying units, unlockable quests for your legendary lords, and the somewhat controversial regional occupation.

      As far as I’ve understood the latter, there are basically two types of major settlements: cities and holds. Only dwarves and orks can occupy holds, everyone else can only occupy cities – except for Chaos, they can’t conquer anything. This is done for lore, but also for gameplay reasons. Apparently, it’ll make for a stronger mid-game phase. Where you’d usually be running around, conquering everything in sight, you now have to watch your back and decide how to deal with enemies you can’t just whipe out (though you can still sack or raze the holds/cities to gain resources – I’m guessing they’ll be back on their feet quite quickly).

      So yeah, this might be the change you’re waiting for, but I’d advise you to wait for reviews and maybe let’s plays.

  4. Chem says:

    Hey as long as the scout brought some booze drugs and viagra he is more than ready to stumble upon a slaanesh pleasure palace and join in on one of their rockin’ keggers.

  5. Jediben says:

    Steady on: if RPS is even allowing a tiny bit of doubt into its narrative, you can tell it’s gonna be a stinker!

  6. WhatAShamefulDisplay says:

    Quite frankly this looks far, far too much like R2 and Attila for my taste. Why is it that whenever there is a crap Total War game like Empire or R2 the following several games are condemned to have exactly the same gameplay ‘feel’, yet unless you count FoTS the peerless Shogun 2 simply stood alone? Regardless, I swore after Rome 2 that I would never buy any other Total War game that a.) Had the same stinking regional province system, b.) Retained Richard Beddow over Jeff van Dyck as composer and C.) Didn’t adopt a different system for battles that allows for proper formation play. Since the game looks like for all intents and purposes a low effort Attila reskin in all its core mechanics, especially battle-wise, I will not be touching this with a ten foot barge pole. I shan’t be coming back until CA produce something with the artistry of Shogun 2 again (or more likely when they finally see reason and ditch Warscape).

    Even if other people (maybe those who actually liked R2 and Attila) buy it and enjoy it, I hope they at least hold off on the DLCs, since those things are a terrible business practice.

    • SanguineAngel says:

      The stinking regional province system was one of my favourite things about Rome 2! It’s still not my ideal situation but it was a decent step on a road to overland troop movements actually being worth a damn

  7. Sedghammer says:

    I’ll be picking this up, but my criticism is not about the DLC practices or gameplay. My main gripe with the recent total war games has been the lack of quality with art assets and the art direction in general. Shogun 2 is the greatest Total War game because it has a unified and clear aesthetic, with hundreds of intricate illustrations inspired by Japanese woodblock prints. Get those illustrators back and have them do Total War: Warhammer! Everything from the interface to the terrain assets look like they were taken from different artists with different design goals. Just look at that interface. It looks rushed.

  8. BobbyDylan says:

    This is will be the first main sequence TW game I’ve ever not bought at launch. It’s so disapointing that so many design decisions seem to be carried over from Rome2. After the highpoint that was Shogun 2, this looks like a nice mod for Rome2. No thanks, mate. Let me know when you make Medieval 2.
    Till then, I’ll (hopefully soon) be playing HOI-4 and Stellaris.

    • Rich says:

      I assume you mean Medieval 3? Otherwise I have some good news for you.

  9. Trashcanman says:

    Looks pretty enough. In all honesty I am now finally having quite a fun playthrough of Rome 2. Of course it took a few years of patching and expanding and the massive DEI mod but still. Won’t buy this but it might turn out to be entertaining. After awhile. Will at least try the demo and that’s not something I expected.

    I do wonder what is up with the whole trilogy thing. There are only so many ways you can make a TW: Warhammer. Methinks it will just be added races and stuff in what amounts to be standalone expansions. With an extra landmass every now and then. Meh. That they ship the game without factions such as the elves, skaven and beastman even as minors or unplayable races is ridiculous. And have you seen how limited the rosters are? Meh meh meh.

    Best case scenario is that after the third ‘game’ we’ll have the entire Warhammer world with most of the races and factions implemented. So that modders can add to that as best as they can. But that will take ages.

  10. JamesTheNumberless says:

    Ah Warhammer, your generically Germanic sounding placenames don’t get much more genericly Germanic sounding. And yes I know that’s the whole point of the Empire, but surely they dropped the ball with “Middenland” :|

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      Harlander says:

      Are you telling me you wouldn’t want to live in a place called Murderhome?

      • JamesTheNumberless says:

        Oh Murderhome’s alright, afterall it *is* the Warhammer universe. It’s just that I would really rather not live in land that shares its name with a kind of open sewer if I could possibly avoid it.

        • PancakeWizard says:

          As Warhammer goes on the scale of grim, an open sewer is probably beach-front property.