Watch 17 minutes of Space Hulk: Deathwing singleplayer

The best way to play Space Hulk: Deathwing [official site] will surely be its cooperative multiplayer mode, with you and three of your closest warpals yelling over Skype as you stomp around mowing down hordes of aliums. The FPS will also do singleplayer with AI squadmates, mind, and that’s on display in a new gameplay video. It shows seventeen minutes of uncut gameplay, seventeen minutes of Terminators stomping around a space cathedral, whacking Tyranids with swords inscribed with slogans like “I am wrath. I am steel. I am the mercy of angels.” No subtlety, those Space Marines.

Sure, I’ll give that a go? The video isn’t oh-my-giddy-aunt super-amazing but I’m curious to poke at it myself. I like the contrast between super-huge Gothic chambers and tight, maze-like tunnels. I like how plodding and stompy the first-person view is. I like locking doors behind you. I like ordering squadmates around. I like the groaning of the ship itself. I like the psi powers. I like enemies being deadly enough to knock off the two AI buddies. I like that it doesn’t have gobs of exposition thrown at you. I did laugh at how much the squadmates repeat themselves. I do like how the loose structure reminds me of developers Streum On Studio’s last game, E.Y.E: Divine Cybermancy, and I hope Deathwing will be similarly overambitious and weird.

Focus Home Interactive, Deathwing’s publishers, say the campaign will take about 15 hours on normal difficulty. The co-op plays through variations of the same missions in any order. Co-op has different classes too, from healers to melee specialists, while in singleplayer you’re always a psychic Librarian.

Space Hulk: Deathwing is coming to Steam on December 9th. It’ll cost £30.


  1. RedViv says:

    SPACE HUokay I tried, I tried so hard but this looks too great.

  2. DuncUK says:

    I dunno what you call it, but see an AI beastie get stuck on the geometry at 2:59. Great demo vid!

  3. DarkFenix says:

    Looks, well, okay I guess. The AI looks like it’s precisely as irritating and idiotic as every other game in the genre, mandating multiplayer to have any decent experience with the game. Fine for me, since I had no interest in single player, but not necessarily for all.

    • Bluestormzion says:

      That’s actually accurate to the source material. The original “Space Hulk” boardgame has a small squadron of Space Marines in Terminator Armor board a Space Hulk, which is an unholy amalgamation of many lost, derelict ships that have somehow merged, with the help of Chaos and the Warp, into one wandering behemoth, strewn with lost, valuable, and VERY powerful relics… but also riddled with untold horrors, aliens, etc. In the board game (and ensuing card game version) our chief antagonists are the Tyranid, an extra-galactic swarm of- well, you know the Zerg? From Starcraft? The Tyranid are what Blizzard ripped-off when they made the Zerg. Same theme. ANYWAY, aboard this particular Space Hulk are probably billions of Tyranid Genestealers, and their purpose is to act as shock-troops before the Hive Fleet arrives, and ALSO to deposit embryos into living victims (ew.) that will eventually be born and then cared for by that host (EW.) as the Host’s mind will have been supplanted by a local hive mind called a Brood Mind. This results in Genestealer Cults blah blah blah, but the important thing is that these psycho-aliens are charging our Genetically-Enhanced Super-Human protagonists because using THEM as hosts for a new generation would result in Super-Genestealer Babies that would be nigh-unstoppable. And when you’re just a part of a hive intelligence, well, losing a few hundred or even THOUSAND Shock Troops to secure a re-usable Super-Human host who will live hundreds of years and produce nigh-invincible soldiers for your war… Yeah, it’s worth it.

      • Leonick says:

        He might have been talking about the squad AI, suggesting it’s stupid thus mandating multiplayer.

        If the enemy AI is stupid whether you play alone or multiplayer isn’t going to change that.

      • grimdanfango says:

        This reads a little like you came here *expecting* to need to educate people on the finer points of the lore, and hunted around for a post you could attach it to.
        He may or may not know all about the fiction… he’s just saying the squad behaviour AI looks janky.

        I presume you aren’t claiming that it’s accurate to the fiction that those of the 1st company, bestowed with the honour of Terminator armour, can’t work out which way to point their gun during battle? :-P

        • DarkFenix says:

          I do in fact know all about the fiction and my complaint was indeed regarding the squad AI, whose behaviour says less “the elite of a galaxy-spanning empire” and more “some idiot who hasn’t finished reading the manual for that power armour”. And before the lore encyclopaedia chimes in again, I’m using power armour as a catch-all term.

        • Ergates_Antius says:

          Yeah, I’m not seeing much in the way of genetically modified super-human reflexes combined with sophisticated targeting systems and decades of combat experience.

      • Elric666 says:

        Blizzard ripped of the Zerg from WH40K? You mean, like Games Workshop ripped of the Tyranids and Space Marines from Starship Troopers?

        • Marcos Zeve says:

          It´s more or less known that Starcraft was built over an in-house Blizzard project that was a Wh40k RTS that they presented to Games Workshop but they got cold feet because of the WH40k videogames made so far had flopped. Terrans were Space Marines, Zergs were Tyranids and Protoss were Eldar. I was a subscriber of Computer Gaming World at the time,and we are talking mid-90s here. In a visit to the Blizzard Studios after the launch of Diablo, the CGW staff talked how the Blizzard guys were huge Warhammer nerds, with boards, armies and scenery available all the time for Fantasy and 40k games. Some columnist even hinted at this 40k project. They they went silent and a few years later, Starcraft was born.

        • Phasma Felis says:

          Hahaha, what? No. You haven’t read Starship Troopers, have you? There is nothing in common there besides powered armor and alien bugs, both of them very standard sci-fi tropes.

  4. Menthalion says:

    Pre-ordered because I like E.Y.E. and Warhammer games, but I sure hope the FOV, head bob and turnaround blur can be tweaked, because I got motion sickness from this clip already.

  5. klops says:

    I’d prefer more lethal approach than shooting and pushing away the big bad blade-alien for a minute, but looks pretty fun. I agree with Alice that there’s lots to like.

  6. Whelp says:

    Actually looks kinda boring.

    • KastaRules says:

      That’s my fear as well.

      • Tigg_Fedora says:

        Sadly not only is it boring, the gameplay is dreadful.

        The UI was not so much designed as vomited into the game with no regard for usability. I played in the pre-order beta and promptly got a refund.

        Hopefully the game will improve after release, but I suspect it will remain as clunky as the Space Marines boots on deck plating.

        I love Wh40k and wanted this to be good. My impressions so far is that it isn’t.

  7. ramirezfm says:

    Looks like Vermintide.

    • TΛPETRVE says:

      Not really. Seems to go more after Rainbow Six: Vegas, or maybe Star Wars: Republic Commando.

      • ramirezfm says:

        It still feels like Vermintide to me. If Vermintide had single player and Republic Commando interface for squadmates, but still Vermintide.

  8. TΛPETRVE says:

    Looking forward, albeit with some reservations. After Vermintide and the simplistic but tense Space Beast Terror Fright, this looks a wee bit, shall we say, toothless. Still, I’m ready to part with my Brouzouf.

    • Sentinel Greg says:

      Came here looking for Space Beast Terror Fright. While Deathwing looks interesting, it does seem loose and flabby when compared to SBTF or even the Space Hulk board game.

      Have you tried SBTFs most recent updates? Pretty stellar.

  9. neems says:

    It’s amazing how many games seem to struggle with the word ‘xenos’, they don’t seem to realise it’s a plural.

    • Pogs says:

      I think it’s because they have not employed linguistic professors such as those used to dealing with alien heptapods.

    • A Wanderer says:

      Well, I know “xeno” is of greek origin, but the Warhammer 40K universe has been known to butcher the latin language (I mean, come on, Astra MIlitarum is not even declined properly), so…

  10. kud13 says:

    Looking forward to this. Had a ton of fun with E.Y.E (bought it on release, and I do not regret paying full price). Streum On does the whole “feeling like a badass” part really well. Hopefully, with a publisher they work out the janks while retaining the fun core, so that this sells well.

  11. Artiforg says:

    I hope the head bob can be turned off and that the fov can be increased as this is nausea inducing, for me at least.

  12. Michael Fogg says:

    Well, I probably complained at least once in the comments here on the occasion of THQ’s Space Marine that a proper W40k action game would be some sort of tactical team shooter. It seems I pretty much got what I was asking for. I especially like the damage to individual armour parts.

    • Darth Gangrel says:

      As far as I know, Space Marine and this one are the only Warhammer games that has singleplayer and isn’t a strategy game. I like FPS and RPG games and it feels like Warhammer should be able to interest me, but no game except for those above meet the criteria of SP+FPS/RPG.

  13. Elric666 says:

    It looks pretty good, but I’m somewhat dissatisfied with the sound. The weapons and the characters don’t sound badass enough for Warhammer 40K. There should be more “boom” to the weapons and the characters should have deeper voices and not sound like college graduates.

  14. tonicer says:

    Woah holy fucking shit this is amazing. I have to somehow get rid of the motion blur and increase the fov a bit and it is perfect. Also they showed really good gameplay. No gamepad gameplay which is fantastic.