At E3, we got a taste of the fantasy-based battle in Creative Assembly’s latest addition to the Total War franchise, Total War: Warhammer. Six months later, we finally have our first glimpse of the game’s campaign through the eyes of the Greenskins -- goblins and orcs.
The focus was less on the large-scale battles and more on the big picture, where various races vie for every piece of land in the Old World. With the help of fly-by map, fans get their first glimpse of the Warhammer world. As this is a fantasy setting, the developers were a little more creative with the world, as opposed to the plains, deserts, forests, and hills of its historical-based predecessors. Instead, the fields of battle are littered with fire, smoke and bones. The mountains where the dwarven races reside are full of bridges to connect their vast territories, whereas the settlements are adorned with the faces of their ancestors. However, the landscape isn’t just for show. Some key areas and structures, such as the Pillar of Bone contain heavy levels of magic, which could prove to be advantageous if you have a spellcaster in your ranks.
Although the featured race this time around were goblins and orcs, you can briefly see the landscapes of other groups. The Bretonnian lands are lush with rivers and forests, with their castles dotting the rich and fertile land, but the Vampiric race is spreading their blight across the land, darkening trees and destroying the land with dark magic. The Norse tribes live up north in barren, cold lands, and any army that pursues them will suffer attrition in the harsh climate.
Orcs and goblins are slowly pushing forward into their space, leaving destruction in their wake. One skirmish between the two races saw the orcs take over a dwarven city. As a result, the orcs furnished the newly-captured settlement with their own decorations of fire and rapidly-constructed wood buildings. Another scenario showed a group of goblins trapped between two large dwarven armies. To make matters worse, they’re also under the threat of a nearby volcano. However, these goblins can easily get out of all three dangerous situations with the ability of tunnelling underground. Dwarves have the ability as well, so it’s best to use it when you’re sure that enemy forces won’t chase you with the same tactic.
After each battle, a new popup animation shows the loot gained, special items earned, and the rank increase of your army’s leader. The special items can be equipped to the leader, providing them with an extra boost in attributes or a certain fighting style during battle. Additional banners from previous victories can also be given to certain units in your army to boost their abilities in battle.
For leaders, there’s an increase in skill level. With 30 levels to progress for each character, there are more options to choose from for how to make your general unique. In addition, they can gain mounts and also level up unique weapons.
However, there are times when an army might not have the willingness to fight. One goblin force is low on morale due to the lack of activity, but you can build raiding camps to raise fighting spirits. In addition, goblins can order units from great distances, making them very effective even when they’re deep in enemy territory.
If an army wins enough battles, their “fightiness” meter reaches the state of “Waaagh!,” which inspires another large army to join the already-strong force. However, this second army is AI-controlled, but you can give it a few orders, such as taking a settlement, leaving your “Waaagh!” army intact and safe from casualties.
The 17-minute video is but a taste of what’s to come in the final game. Over the next few weeks, the developers are planning to show off more of the other races as well as a developer livestream session next week with details to follow.
Rexly Peñaflorida II is a Contributor at Tom’s Hardware. He writes news on tech and hardware, but mostly focuses on gaming news. As a Chicagoan, he believes that deep dish pizza is real pizza and ketchup should never be on hot dogs. Ever. Also, Portillo’s is amazing.