Title: Total War: Warhammer
Developer: Creative Assembly
Release Date: Tuesday, May 24, 2016 (Unlocks at 8 AM BST or 3 AM EST)
Pre-load Available: Thursday, May 19, 2016
Countdown to Release
The latest installment in the Total War franchise brings the series' unique combination of turn-based grand strategy and real-time battles to the Warhammer world. For those unfamiliar with the series, Total War combines a Civilization-like turn based aspect with real-time battles. On the campaign map you build and manage your empire. Construction, unit creation, trade, diplomacy, taxes, and subterfuge are all done on the campaign map. When you finally unleash your armies upon the enemy it becomes a real-time battle where your host takes the field and the butcher's work begins. For series veterans this installment brings new systems including flying units, legendary lords, magic, and Corruption that make this the freshest take on the Total War formula since, well, Attila. Will you lead the noble Empire towards victory, hold the line with stalwart Dwarfs, or wipe them all out with the armies of Chaos? Before you even answer let's find out if your toaster and hamster wheel combination can become an engine of war.
*Subject to change. Click for minimum and 60fps specs as well as most recent updates*
**Check out the Performance Thread by ISee!**
AMD 16.5.3 drivers are out now
Originally Posted by Total War Wiki
PC Recommended Specifications:
[Expected around 45-55 FPS on campaign map and in a 1v1, 20 units vs 20 units battle, default graphics preset set to “High”]
Operating System: Windows 7/8.1/10 64Bit
Processor: Intel® Core™ i5-4570 3.20GHz
RAM: 8 GB
Hard Drive: 35 GB
Video Card: (DirectX 11) AMD Radeon R9 270X 2048MB | NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760 2048MB @1080P
According to the developers, Warhammer lore was heavily considered in the development of the game so features from previous historically-based Total Wars were modified or removed as applicable. New features like magic were added but many formations (wedge, phalanx etc.) were removed unless present in the lore. It's still not safe to charge your cavalry into a wall of spears.
- Magic - Probably the most exciting addition to Total War: Warhammer. Certain characters and units have access to a repertoire of magical abilities that can turn the tide of battle or even turn against you. Use of these abilities takes points from a pool of magic shared by your side during the battle. This pool is subject to the Winds of Magic, which Warhammer mages use to cast their spells.Players can gamble before a battle to try and receive more favorable Winds of Magic, increasing the number of abilities they can cast but there is also a chance you will receive less.
- Legendary Lords, Lords, and Heroes - This section will cover several of the changes to lords and heroes, replacing generals and agents from previous games. Lords replace generals in Total War: Warhammer. They lead your armies, command your navies, and oversee your cities. Every army requires a lord to lead it and they provide buffs (or debuffs) to the army they are leading depending on their attributes. Heroes replace agents. They can assassinate and sabotage but also be attached to your armies. Unlike previous games they will be deployed on the field of battle and fight when the army they are attached to engages in battle. Legendary lords are named characters from Warhammer lore. When you choose a faction you also choose a legendary lord to use, although the other options will become available throughout the campaign. These lords are extremely powerful and come with a host of abilities, personal skill trees, and unique quests. They will receive items lore-specific to them, mounts to use in battle, and can change how your campaign plays out based on the quests given to them and their traits.
- RPG - Elements - Total War: Warhammer promises to expand on the RPG elements already present in past games, especially in regards to legendary lords. These lords will receive lore-specific weapons and armor to use on the battlefield as they follow their unique quest chain culiminating in special quest battles. All lords and heroes gain items, traits, and skill points to put towards a general skill tree as they accomplish things but legendary lords also have a unique skill tree to greatly aid you on your path to glory.
- Rules of Occupation - The rules of occupation have been overhauled to fit Warhammer lore. Population centers are divided into to categories, hold and settlements. Dwarfs and Greenskins can occupy Holds and everyone else can occupy Settlements. Chaos cannot occupy anything as they make use of the Horde mechanic simiar to the nomadic tribes in Attila. The areas you cannot take over offer the potential to be sacked for income or razed. This article on the Total War blog contains more information on the reasons Creative Assembly chose these rules for occupation, more details, and examples.
- Taxes and Income - Taxes have been simplified from past Total War games and income has been linked more closely to how you expect the different races to act. Every victory gives an amount of income and sacking is a more viable way to support your war engine. For example, the human Empire will have a more traditional economy and playstyle while Greenskins have the Waaagh! mechanic similar to Medieval II's Crusades. These allow for more lore-loyal gameplay and more drastic differences based on the race you lead.
- Naval Battles - Naval battles were not the focus of this game and will be auto-resolved.
- Cooperative gampelay - While not new to Total War, it bears mentioning that Total War: Warhammer offers co-op and adversarial campaign modes. Co-op campaigns allow the players to share units during battles, giving your friend command of part of your army.
- First Person - I've noticed some streamers miss this so I decided to add it here. If you press <Insert> when you have artillery selected you can aim and fire them in first person.
- The Empire
The Empire is the human-faction based on the historical Holy Roman Empire. Lead by Emperor Karl Franz, this faction offers the most traditional Total War experience. The Empire consists of robust infantry, supplemented by powerful magic and cavalry. The Empire is the jack-of-all trades faction with a good mix of units in each category relying on combined arms to take down the more unique aka scary units of the enemy. The Legendary Lords of this factions are Emperor Karl Franz and Balthasar Gelt.
The Dwarfs are a defensive minded race with strong infantry to defend their ranged and artillery units. On the flip-side, they lack cavalry so are relatively immobile. They use the range of their artillery and technology to destroy their opponents without chasing them. The Dwarfs have the ability to tunnel through mountains and surprise their enemies, or be surprised by forces lurking below. The Dwarf playstyle will favor slow-and-steady players. Their loyalty ensures that no rebellions occur and high public order means you can send your armies out to fulfill entries in the Book of Grudges. The Dwarven Legendary Lords are High King Thorgrim Grudgebearer and Ungrim Ironfist.
The Greenskins is the term for a large variety of races that thrive on warfare. Subscribing to a "might makes right" philosophy, the Greenskins vie for control of warbands led by a Warboss. Frequent infighting lessens the threat of Greenskins but should they be united an unstoppable WAAAGH! begins. They also have access to the "tunneling" stance like the Dwarfs, utilizing the Underway to surprise their foes. The Greenskins have access to Grimgor Ironhide and Azhag the Slaughterer as their Legendary Lords.
- Vampire Counts
The Vampire Counts are the undead faction in Total War: Warhammer. The Vampire Counts slowly corrupt enemy regions through agents and buildings. These foster undead rebellions and lower public order, weakening your rivals before you absorb them into your empire. The Vampire Counts lack ranged units but field rapid moving cavalry, terrifying monsters, powerful magic, and panic-immune units. The Vampire Counts have the ability to recruit certain units anywhere in the world and turn the enemy dead against their former brethren. The Legendary Lords of the Vampire Counts are Mannfred von Carstein and Heinrich Kemmler.
Playable DLC Factions
- Warriors of Chaos
The Warriors of Chaos utilize the horde mechanic first seen in Total War: Attila. This faction has no settlements and survives on winning battles and sacking settlements while seeking out the Artefacts of Chaos. Armies of Chaos set up encampments to recruit units and build buildings but require constant battle and pillaging to sustain their armies. Their very presence in a region foments disorder and cultist uprisings making them an insidious force of evil. They have a strong core of infantry and cavalry as well as monstrous beasts and Hellcannon artillery. General range is provided by missile cavalry. The Legendary Lords of Chaos are Archaon the Everchosen, Prince Sigvald the Magnificent, and Kholek Suneater. Please note that the Warriors of Chaos were free for pre-orders or purchases in the launch week. As of now, payment is required to play the Warriors of Chaos faction.
- The Beastmen - Release Date: July 28th, 2016 Price: $18.99
The Beastmen are a horde faction made up of extremely powerful yet unarmored melee units coupled with some ranged capabilities and new Lore of the Wild magic. Like Chaos they thrive on destruction to continue their engine of war and also spread Chaos Corruption. Similar to the WAAAGH! mechanic, the Beastmen armies can accumulate Bestial Rage which will summon Brayherds to form an unstoppable, bestial force. Beastmen armies are immune to attrition and united in their destructive cause so they do not take infighting damage from having multiple hordes in proximity to each other. The Beastmen also have unique army stances inspired by their mastery of the forest. Their standard stance allows for movement and ambush, their encampments are hidden, and they can navigate through the Beast-Paths, emerging where they are least expected. The Beastmen DLC also includes a new Beastmen campaign called "An Eye for an Eye". The Beastmen are led by their legendary lords, Khazrak the One Eye and Malagor the Dark Omen.
- The Wood Elves - Release Date: 12/08/2016 Price: 18.99
The Wood Elves of Athel Loren have emerged and the Wild Hunt begins! Let me write this up after work and add some pictures. Gimme a second.
Aside from the main playable factions there are also many minor factions. These factions offer opportunities for trade, alliances, confederacies, and vassalage. Some, such as Bretonnia, are playable in Custom/Multiplayer battles but not in Campaign mode.
Videos and screens
What is Total War Warhammer?
Bretonnia Multiplayer battle
Kholek Suneater Let's Play
360° interactive launch trailer
Originally Posted by Screenshots
Please check out the Total War wiki for all currently available information. Much of it is officially maintained so it's a great source of information on skills, units, everything Total War. Developer blogs are posted there with in-depth information on features, how they work, and why they were implemented the way that they were. There's also an in-depth in-game encyclopedia with everything you could possibly want to know and an online game guide here.
There are a number of Twitch streams going on right now but be warned, a lot of them are new to the series so don't go looking for hot gameplay tips.
Review Thread by Machina
Open Critic 86
Disclaimer: I know nothing about Warhammer lore. If an expert would like to add something or if anyone has any corrections at all please feel free to PM me. Thank you.
Now stop reading. It's time for WAAAAAAAAAAGH!