SPACE HULK SPACE HULK SPACE Hu- okay, let’s not do that. As polished as Space Hulk: Tactics looks, Cyanide’s take on the venerable board game feels like a regular franchise entry now, rather than a once-in-a-blue-moon event it used to be. As with Space Hulk Ascension from a few years back, Tactics is another attempt to capture the spark of Games Workshop’s board game of sci-fi tactics, pitting a squad of power-armoured troopers up against an endless alien swarm – this time with a full alien campaign for solo play. Below, an ominous and lore-heavy launch trailer.
While Full Control’s 2013 take on Space Hulk was a mostly-purist adaptation of the board game (not a bad thing in itself), Tactics embraces its digital nature with a slew of new rules and systems that would probably be too fiddly to resolve on the tabletop. The main twist to the game is a deck of bonus cards which can either be activated to use directly, or consumed to grant extra regular actions to your units. I’ve yet to play it, but the thought of the Genestealer that only narrowly missed breaking through your line just getting an extra turn is enough to make my skin crawl.
The game comes with a full map editor and level-sharing functionality, meaning that players won’t be limited to a handful of scenarios, as some other Space Hulk games have done before, and there’s online multiplayer – a given, considering its board game origins. Outside of its new rules and the chance to play as the Genestealers in a scripted campaign of their own, it’s looks like, comfortable Space Hulk stuff. Nothing to complain about, but I can’t help but wish that someone was feeling gutsy enough to revisit the real-time squad tactics style of earlier PC Space Hulks.