Posts Tagged ‘Total War: Warhammer’

Total War Saga: Thrones of Britannia is a smaller game with some very big ideas

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It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog. That’s a useful motto, a pick-me-up for the smaller among us, but the truth is right now, I am a very small dog with very little fight left in it.

I’m the boss of Mide, a province in the middle of Ireland. The 9th century is drawing to a close and everything is in disarray. The coasts are saturated with Danes, there is no unification among my own people, and at the horizon’s edge, England is burning. Total War Saga: Thrones of Britannia has a cumbersome name but it might be the leanest and meanest game in Creative Assembly’s long-running strategy series. It’s a little dog with a whole lot of beautiful fight in it.

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Wot I Think- Total War: Warhammer 2 – Rise of the Tomb Kings DLC

why the long, skinless face?

I can sympathise, at least a little, with the ancient Egyptian-themed undead known as the Tomb Kings, and who are Total War: Warhammer 2’s newest faction. A decade ago, I was trapped underneath the Great Pyramid of Giza for a mere 20 minutes while another tourist had a claustrophobia-induced panic attack. Waking up inside a pyramid and discovering that your innards are full of embalming fluid and you have only rags to hide your desiccated shame would, I imagine, be a little bit more unpleasant. No wonder they want to murder all the living.

With a chip on their bony shoulders and an appetite for power and conquest, the Tomb Kings are comfortable fit for Total War, even more so than their multitude of warlike adversaries. They’re an unceasing military machine that has yet to discover a problem that it can’t fling an infinite number of disposable animated corpses at, over and over again. This new faction is, however, something of an acquired taste, with some uneven integration into the campaign – but nonetheless the Tomb Kings are a surprisingly forgiving starting point for newcomers.

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Total War: Three Kingdoms tackles the turbulence of 3rd century China

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Total War has been enjoying its time among the greenskins and the undead, but we’ve been waiting to see exactly which period it’d land in when it returns to its historical roots for its next major installment. Now the answer is here. Total War: Three Kingdoms.

The year is 190CE. China is in turmoil. The Han Dynasty crumbles before the child-emperor. He is but a figurehead; a mere puppet for the tyrant warlord Dong Zhuo. It is a brutal and oppressive regime, and as Dong Zhuo’s power grows, the empire slips further into the cauldron of anarchy… Only one thing is certain: the very future of China will be shaped by its champions. Total War: Three Kingdoms is the next major historical strategy game in the award-winning Total War series.

This is both unexpected and precisely the kind of setting I was hoping for. A mostly self-contained conflict with a clear end-goal and set of factions. The trailer follows.

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Warhammer II’s Tomb Kings are a defensive juggernaut

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If you’ve ever come back from holiday to find that your flatmates/children/parents have flooded the kitchen/dyed the cat blue/thrown out all your original Jethro Tull LPs, then spare a thought for the Tomb Kings, Total War: Warhammer II’s first all-new DLC faction. Once upon a time, they ruled a pseudo-Ancient Egyptian empire in which scholars quested for the secret to eternal youth and tyrants went merrily to the grave, confident of resurrection in paradise. Several millennia and a couple of necromancy wars later, the mummified Kings stumble from their pyramids to find their bodies reduced to KFC leftovers, their southern homeland of Nehekhara trashed, and the continent awash with bearded barbarians, talking rats and stupid sexy dinosaurs.

Unfortunately for all the younger races, the Tomb Kings are far stronger in death than they were in life. I spent half an hour getting to grips with their quirks, including a series-first crafting system. Here are my thoughts.

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These are the top 100 Steam games of 2017

Another year over, a new one just begun, which means, impossibly, even more games. But what about last year? Which were the games that most people were buying and, more importantly, playing? As is now something of a tradition, Valve have let slip a big ol’ breakdown of the most successful titles released on Steam over the past twelve months.

Below is the full, hundred-strong roster, complete with links to our coverage if you want to find out more about any of the games, or simply to marvel at how much seemed to happen in the space of 52 short weeks.

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Tomb Kings will hit Total War: Warhammer 2 but not yet

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Creative Assembly is still working on Total War: Warhammer 2 and the Mortal Empires post-launch updates, but things are going slower than anticipated. In a blog post published yesterday, the team explains, candidly, what the issues are and when we can expect new campaign packs, like the Tomb Kings, as well as the addition of Norsca to Mortal Empires.

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How Total War: Warhammer’s Mortal Empires engineers a world of unending war

This is The Mechanic, where Alex Wiltshire invites developers to discuss the difficult journeys they underwent to make the best bits of their games. This time, Total War: Warhammer’s Mortal Empires campaign [official site].

Mortal Empires is the logical conclusion of Total War: Warhammer. It asks this: what happens if all the races, factions, legendary lords and terrain of both Total War: Warhammer and its sequel were folded together into a single giant campaign? The answer was released in October as a free addition to owners of the two games, and it is, as game director Ian Roxborough tells me, “By far the biggest, most content-rich campaign that we’ve ever done in Total War.”

But how do you make games that are designed to be played both in discrete and distinctive smaller chunks, and also in huge and unified ones? How do you balance Warhammer’s strongly asymmetric races against each other while continually adding more? And how do you make a game as big as Mortal Empires comprehensible and playable at all? Read the rest of this entry »

Mortal Empires is Total War’s best grand campaign

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Mortal Empires is Total War’s grandest of grand campaigns: a stunningly huge global war with over 100 factions and 35 leaders duking it out over multiple continents. In terms of scale, it’s the series at its most ambitious, and its most daunting. It took me an hour of second-guessing and two false starts before I finally settled on a faction and leader. It’s excessive, really. I love it.

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Historical hints from the Total War teams

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Total War might have been away in the land of elves and orcs for a while now, but it hasn’t forgotten its historical roots. In fact, Creative Assembly are working on three historical Total War games: one is an expansion to an older title, one is a spin-off of sorts called a Saga, and the biggest of the lot is set in an entirely new era. New to Total War, that is. Being historical it will definitely be something old. A big blog post today gives some hints as to what we can expect and I’m just going to come right out and say one word: Vikings.

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Total War: Warhammer 2’s Mortal Empires and Blood for the Blood God DLC is out today

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Total War: Warhammer’s Old World and New World are finally colliding in Mortal Empires today. If you own both Total War: Warhammer and Total War: Warhammer 2, you’ll be able to download the DLC for free, smooshing together an edited version of the landmasses from each game. That means you’ll be duking it out on a huge map with 35 leaders, 25 starting positions, 117 factions and 295 settlements. Crikey. These turn times are going to be long.

Also launching today is yer now traditional Total War blood pack, adding lots of gore to the game. It will be free if you already own the blood pack for the first Warhammer, but everyone else will need to purchase the DLC.

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Total War’s free Mortal Empires DLC merges Warhammer 1 and 2

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Total War: Warhammer is a big game, and the recently released Total War: Warhammer II [official site] is even bigger. But in the eyes of the Creative Assembly, that still isn’t big enough. To remedy this, they’ve come up with the Mortal Empires DLC, a free download that will essentially merge the two games’ campaigns together in one huge map, letting players assume command of any of the eight races available in the series so far.

To find out why this is happening and how the Creative Assembly are going about it, we spoke to Game Director Ian Roxburgh and Lead Designer Jim Whitson.

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Should you wait for Total War: Warhammer 2’s DLC?

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When Total War: Warhammer launched last year, it was a marked departure for the series – though not, perhaps, quite as dramatic as 2005’s Spartan: Total Warrior – and contained no dearth of experiments and new ideas. It was exciting to see all of those changes to the formula, but it wasn’t until the addition of key pieces of DLC, introducing new campaigns and mechanics, that it really came into its own. So with Total War: Warhammer 2 [official site] arriving today, you might be wondering if you should hold off. But you shouldn’t worry; this sequel is an entirely different animal.

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Wot I Think: Total War – Warhammer 2

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In three more turns, the ritual will be complete, and I’ll be one step closer to controlling the Vortex that holds the forces of Chaos at bay. In two more turns, Skaven and Chaos armies will be at the gates. I’m surrounded. By land and sea they arrive, this howling mass of warped warriors and chittering rat-men. Army, after army, after army, all attempting to stop the ritual. Total War: Warhammer 2 [official site] is a race, and it’s an utterly savage one.

From the safety of the other side of that campaign I can tell you that I survived. Just. Reinforcements made it in time, slaughtering the rats and warriors by their hundreds. It was touch and go for a bit, though, which is fairly typical of Creative Assembly’s bloodthirsty sequel.

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Wot I Think: Total War: Warhammer – Norsca DLC

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From the unpleasantly chilly northern edge of Total War: Warhammer’s [official site] Old World comes its final DLC faction: Norsca. These mammoth-loving Viking analogues, despite being a minor faction that don’t quite have the star power of the Orcs or Empire, manage to encapsulate and then build on all that’s great about Creative Assembly’s post-release armies. They’re aggressive, experimental and blessed with an exotic and intimidating roster of warriors and monsters.

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Total War: Warhammer revamps original races tomorrow

Total War: Warhammer 2 is almost here, taking the hammerwar to new warlands with new warbands on September 28th, but what of the Old World? As new races and units have arrived in the hamwarworld over the past year, power creep has left some of the original residents of Total Warhammer [official site] a little weak and bland in comparison. Thankfully, developers The Creative Assembly are now addressing this problem with a big balance patch fixing old Old Worlders. Launching tomorrow, the Foundation Update will boost their power and also make them a little more interesting. Read the rest of this entry »

Total Warhammer getting extra units to celebrate Creative Assembly’s 30th birthday

As part of their their thirtieth birthday celebrations, The Creative Assembly are about to whack thirty extra ‘Regiment of Renown’ into Total War: Warhammer [official site]. Sadly, the celebratory additions are simply famed units from the world of Warhammer [that’s ‘the Hamwarworld’ to fans -tabletop ed.] rather than folks from Creative Assembly’s history. There’s no Garrius from Accountington, no Great Minstrel Jeff van Dyck, no General Ian dos Fifa, not even Pip’s Beyoncé elf. No, instead we’re getting the likes of Khorok’s Manrippers, Knights of the Lionhearted, Wyrd Spawn, and Loec’s Tricksters. Pssh, fine, you have your ‘lore’. Here, meet some of them in this video: Read the rest of this entry »

Total War: Warhammer II waggles Norsca race DLC as early purchase incentive

Norsca

My partner is literally playing Warhammer in the living room with a friend right now. That means I’ve probably got enough ambient Warhammer to write an entire post about Warhammer. “Age of Sigmar” is a Warhammer phrase. So is 40K. I also remember that guy with all the eyes. The Chancellor of Eyes we call him. Hangs out with the Lord Relictor and Sir Doots And His Trumpet in the Silver Tower. OH. He is called the Gaunt Summoner.

Anyway, if you pre-order Total War: Warhammer II [official site] or buy it on the first week of release you get the Norsca Race Pack for the first game free of charge when that particular DLC comes out on 10 August.

As the famous saying goes, “In the far future when someone turns the lights out and it’s scary there’s a war. Only war. In the dark.” Read the rest of this entry »

Creative Assembly clarify DLC plans for Warhammer 2

More beasties, less mini-campaigns. In response to fan feedback and to avoid some of the criticism that the Chaos Warriors stirred up, Creative Assembly have outlined some changes to their pre- and post-release plans for Total War: Warhammer 2 [official site]. Brand director Rob Bartholomew has written a blog post explaining all (except what the actual preorder bonus will be, natch). Acknowledging the negative response that the Chaos Warriors DLC stirred up in some quarters, Bartholomew goes into detail about the reasoning behind “Early Adopter Bonuses”, both in terms of delivery and content. He also says that there are “more historical releases planned in the next twelve months than fantasy”.

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Revisiting and rating Total War: Warhammer and its DLC

Since launching last year, Total War: Warhammer’s [official site] digital facsimile of Games Workshop’s weird fantasy universe has grown considerably. The Old World’s become nice and fat with new factions, campaigns, units and mechanics, and now it’s finished. So this is a pretty good time to jump in, especially if you’ve been holding out for every piece of DLC. But oh no! There’s so much of it! If you get the wrong one, you might never forgive yourself. That’s why you’d best stick with me to find out which ones are crackers and which are stinkers.

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Total War: Warhammer charges onto Mac

We’re already in the long run-up to the launch of Total Warhammer 2 later this year but hey! Wait! Hold on! The portpeeps at Feral Interactive today tidied up a loose end of the first Total Warhammer [official site], releasing a Mac version. That means users of Windows, Mac OS, and Linux-based personal cogitators can now totally get hammered and get their war on in some kind of fantasy. Read the rest of this entry »