Warhammer 40,000: Regicide is from the Sydney-based development studio Hammerfall Publishing. They’ve obtained the rights to Games Workshop’s Warhammer 40,000 and turned it, basically, into chess.
I’m glad to report that Hammerfall has done the franchise justice, especially considering that’s not always the case with Warhammer titles. Although lacking in lore – not that it would translate to chess well – it’s easily overlooked when you see the quality of animation in the game.
In the early access version of the game there are Space Marines of the Blood Angel Chapter and Orks from the Goff clan, with others proposed to be added to the game through various methods. The White Scars chapter was available if you signed up for the game’s earlier newsletter. Other armies from the massive lore base are also planned to be placed into game, and personally, I cannot wait to see some my beloved Tyranid Xenos running rampart.
It’s just chess, right? Wrong. Well… and right.
One mode of the game is exactly that: chess, with all the normal complexity of the age-old board game. It also comes with the glory and goriness of battle chess where, with every time you take a piece of your opponent’s army, the piece that’s removed gets decimated in a most brutal way. It fits in perfectly with the grim darkness of the franchise, and is just plain fun to watch. Spectating as your Space Marine Queen piece rips a Pawn’s power armour to bits is delightful.
But yes, in this this, this is just chess. Great for those who love the sport, but not for those who mightn’t and just want another go at a Warhammer title.
If I had to describe game modes as pizzas, the straight-laced chess mode is a margarita; still good, but in the grand scale of things a little boring. Other modes play out like a supreme, offering tactical-as-all-buggery chess, giving players special abilities. Those include lobbing frag grenades around a 64×64 chess board, unleashing splash damage or War Bosses unleashing a massive Warghh, increasing the damage of all Orks in a set range. The list goes on.
To keep these skills at a competitive level, each power costs points that you spend during the initiative phase. This is also the time in which you can use powers that are reserved for you, the commander of the army, overseeing the battle but not actually on the field.
Still coming to the game is a campaign mode which has a teaser trailer, in-game.
I can’t wait to see what Hammerfall does with Regicide in the lead up to a full release.
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