Space Hulk: Deathwing Trailer Reveals Bits O’ Gameplay

'Brother, the alien filth keep coming - remind me to draw a bigger skull on my crotch when we get home, they don't seem to be getting the message.'

Space Hulk: Deathwing [official site] is due to launch this year, last we heard, and I’m pretty keen to see more of the Warhammer 40,000 spin-off FPS. Wandering around the ridiculous gothic architecture of mutated Imperium spaceships is very much My Bag as a video game tourist, of course, but I’m fascinated to see what developers Streum On Studio will do after their wonky but pleasing unconventional FPS-RPG E.Y.E.: Divine Cybermancy. So ooh, come on, gather round, crack open a box of Soylens Viridians, and let’s watch this first gameplay trailer.

Well, it’s more a feature list in video form, cut-up snippets of gameplay with voice-over explaining it all. But that’s fine! Technically it’s the first officially gameplay trailer, though bits have snuck out before in blurry b-roll. Here’s the new trailer:

To recap if you can’t watch right now: Deathwing will send a squad of Space Marine Terminators, controlled by co-op players or AI, on missions into derelict megaships to recover precious technology and such. They might be filled with alien Genestealers. They probably are. They definitely are. Oh god, they’re everywhere! They’re coming out the walls! Luckily, Space Marines have jolly big guns and pointy sticks, selected and equipped before deploying, and know a few magic tricks.

I like that locking doors is a thing in Deathwing. I like the brief relief locking doors brings, and the tension knowing that what’s on the other side will soon break through. Space Beast Terror Fright, which is a bit like ‘Space Hulk meets Aliens‘, is good for that.

And gosh, those gothic ships are so ridiculous and so nice. And those colossal gears! The 40K universe is such a pleasing silly place.

I’m glad Streum On Studio are making this. E.Y.E.: Divine Cybermancy might have fallen short of its ambitions, but it had so dang many – more than can be said for most recent Warhammer 40,000 games. 40K should be a bit weird.


  1. Chaoslord AJ says:

    Divine Cybermancy was just a little too rough for me to enjoy but this one could become a great game, I’ll keep following.

    • G-Lord says:

      I still don’t quite understand why I liked E.Y.E. so much, I guess I just have a soft spot for ropey, overambitious games. Looking forward to this one too.

      • Bfox says:

        It’s like playing an early game mod, rough, but you could see such potential~

  2. Napalm Sushi says:

    I still find it a bit amazing that localised damage in an FPS is still such a vanishing rarity since Deus Ex did it 16 years ago.

    • MrUnimport says:

      I think people dislike it because it’s something the player has effectively no control over. If the bad guys’ fire just happens to land on your right arm you might end up defenseless for no other reason than that you rolled poorly.

      • Ajmist says:

        I disagree if done well it’s not random and adds tactical depth. You got hit on the right because you flanked your attacker to the left or came out of cover on the right hand side. You got hit on the right because when facing a line of attackers you engaged the one on the far left first. You got hit on the right because you failed to turn you left side into the oncome fire. You got hit on the right because you positioned yourself on the right side of your squad. Take a look at games like MechWarrior for examples of the extra dimension that can be achieved with localised damage and how the best players use it to their advantage.

    • SaintAn says:

      That’s because everything is being dumbed down because in gaming the corporations believe no child/adult should be left behind no matter how mentally slow or outright stupid.

      • Premium User Badge

        Phasma Felis says:

        I like how you imply that there was some vanished golden age where location damage was the norm.

        • MrUnimport says:

          Also enjoy the implication that getting specific bits of you blown off takes brainpower on the part of the player.

      • Sandepande says:

        I’m sure there are hard enough games for those who enjoy them.

        Me, I like my stuff dumbed down. Thanks!

      • GWOP says:

        Thank the Emperor for the Block button!

  3. TomxJ says:

    Emperors Teeth those Deathwing sure can backpeddle!

  4. Hobbes says:

    Some thoughts – Some kind of command interface in Single Player is a must, being able to give orders to your AI squadmates is going to be a necessity. The easiest option would be to have something like a tab button bring up a map overlay where you can direct the units and have them set up fields of fire and/or context sensitive actions (e.g. if you send them to a door, it then gives you the option to open/close/lock). For added tension you could have this overlay run in realtime, so you can’t just bring it up mid fight and take a breather.

    Personally I’d like the ability to switch between all the available terminators in the squad, rather than just be stuck as the librarian, I want to play as a terminator with the flamer up front damnit, leave the back line stuff to the AI sometimes!

    The rest will hinge on the Genestealer AI, the original space hulk boardgame translation ended up being pretty good in this regard. Ascension was -bad- (mostly because it deviated way too far from said boardgame). I’m curious to see how they manage it.

    • Borsook says:

      It’s very interesting what you said here, I found the original SH for PC had terrible AI, with genestealers behaving randomly. In Ascension it seemed better but probably mostly because they had bigger numbers and not everything on the board was visible

    • mitthrawnuruodo says:

      Completely agree about tactical UI for singleplayer – this is something 99% shooters ignore since they are only bothered with co-op. Luckily this game has tactical UI, as evidenced by previously released media as well as this trailer. Check the lower right corner of the hud, next to the map.

    • Hobbes says:

      @ Borsook – The key phrase is “ended up”, it took them a lot of patches, and the AI only really works at the top difficulty (with timers and limited CPs), but it does work pretty true to the boardgame, and offers an appropriate fight.

      @ mitth.. something xD – The minimap is cute, but I’d want the option to blow it up to full screen and set waypoints for the team, along with simple commands such as “overwatch here” or “close this door”

    • bill says:

      Basically, you want Space Hulk: Vengeance of the Blood Angels, which does all of that.

      I’ve often wondered why other games didn’t borrow its command points / overlay system, as it was great and horribly tense.

      Unfortunately the game came out at a bad time in the transition between sprite and 3d fps, so it hasn’t aged that well.
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  5. Bweahns says:

    I want a 40k live action movie with a proper budget and I want Brian Blessed involved.

    • Volcanu says:


    • Coming Second says:

      40K is at its best in small chunks. Two and a half hours of roided up bald men humourlessly grunting at each other interspersed with bug hunts would not be great entertainment, at least if I’m not in control of said bald men.

      • Volcanu says:

        I think a movie could work but I agree that having Marines as the main characters would be unlikely to make for good watching.

        I think Space Marines are often most interesting when viewed from regular human eyes. The whole sense of awe and otherness can come across better, plus you can explore the interesting themes around what it means to be human, much of which they have lost in the transition to astartes.

        Basically a 40k movie focussing on a platoon of Guard, struggling against the unimaginable horror of the Galaxy and a paranoid, fanatical religious establishment that often does more to persecute its own citizens than help, could be really great viewing. With plenty of awesome battle scenes and over the top gothic stylings thrown in too of course.

        Not that it would ever happen. To do it justice you’d need a Star Wars-esque budget.

  6. Mi-24 says:

    No idea this was going to be an FPS, still looks good tho

  7. kud13 says:

    E.Y.E. wasn’t really an FPS. It was a First-Person Power Fantasy. Too many RPG bits crammed in there to make it qualify as a shooter.

    I loved E.Y.E as an experience. And this looks spectacular. I’m not super-keen on shooters, but I’ll have to check this out when it’s done.

    • Petethegoat says:

      It did have better shooting than plenty of other beloved FPS games, though.

      This looks great. Meaty.

  8. Premium User Badge

    Phasma Felis says:

    “Space Beast Terror Fright, which is a bit like ‘Space Hulk meets Aliens‘, is good for that.”

    Wait, isn’t Space Hulk already Aliens? I mean, it’s not even “such-and-so meets Aliens.” Gameplay-wise, it’s exactly Aliens, with a cool-looking but entirely cosmetic 40K wrapper.

  9. LennyLeonardo says:

    This actually looks great, although I hope there are some claustrophobic corridors barely big enough to turn around in, as well as the big space cathedral rooms in the video.

  10. Spacewalk says:

    I know that this is still being developed but I was expecting the Genestealers to be faster and the Terminators to be more fragile.

    • Saul says:

      They’re bending the lore to make it more Left 4 Dead-y, by the looks. Okay by me.

    • Zekiel says:

      I really never understood how it made sense for Terminators to be fragile (which they totally were in the board game). They’re the elite warriors of an already-elite fighting force, wearing armour that basically makes them walking tanks. Why do they die as easily as the grunts in Aliens?

      • mouton says:

        Yeah, it struck me too. Why slowly stomp around in that bulky armor when a genestealer one-hits you anyway? Why not bring lighter suits and move faster?

        Of course, it didn’t have to make sense, but that’s how I felt.

        • KhanSolo says:

          In lore, the radiation effects certain parts of the shit lethal to all but the mighty terminator armor.

        • Lanessar says:

          It was part of the lore of the original SH boardgame.

          It basically boiled down to two points: Environment and durability.

          Terminator armor was the only thing that could even HOPE to stop the claws of a genestealer, since it essentially goes through non-hardened material like a warm knife through butter. Being more agile didn’t help, because genestealers are already frighteningly faster than even enhanced superhumans.

          On the environment, most of the hulks were irradiated or exposed to cold vacuum, not fully contained. A normal suit of Astartes armor could mitigate that for a little while, but terminator armor was the only stuff that allowed prolonged actions in vacuum or radiation-leak areas.

          That’s what I recall from my lore-reading, board-gaming days back in the late 80s and early 90s when I had that same question.

          TL;DR: Sending in anything but the heaviest armor was a death sentence within seconds.

  11. aircool says:

    Whatever happened to Two Heads Talking and his mates?

    • Zekiel says:

      All the stuff about Dark Angels = Native Americans seemed to disappear entirely with the Dark Angels Codex in 40K 2nd edition. No idea if it ever came back but I’d hazard a guess not – I assume it was (probably quite reasonably) deemed to be a bit culturally offensive.

      • Zekiel says:

        Addendum: Dark Angels in 2nd edition became the counter-Reformation / Spanish Inquisition in a setting where the Reformation was legitimately inspired by (in-universe version of) Satan. This is an example of why 40K is totally bonkers and also awesome.

        • darkath says:

          Not sure if that’s what you meant but “According to actual records the Spanish Inquisition was arguably the most humane court in Europe.”

  12. racccoon says:

    very cool :)

  13. bill says:

    Space Beast Terror Fright looks awesome, I just wish it had a bit more variation in the rooms/architecture.

    I know the recent update included a new cosmetic tileset for infested corridors, but the game really needs to add in a couple of bigger rooms with high ceilings or big pits or multiple level areas.
    If it had that it’d be perfect.

  14. tonicer says:

    What an actual first person WH40k game?! WTF?! Awesome … just sad that it will be multiplatform … PC only would have been perfect.

  15. Jackablade says:

    “You will explore these Space Hulks as a librarian…” Still makes me giggle even after all these years.