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Warhammer: Chaosbane

Posted by GG Goblin On June - 20 - 2019

Fighting back the tides of chaos and, more importantly, collecting loads of sweet loot.

I have to say that I feel sorry for action RPGs as the first thing anyone will do is compare it to the master of the genre, Diablo. The Blizzard games are at the very top of their game and any other title that turns up is going to have a hard time right out of the gate. That being said, any game that come close has got to be worth a look by anyone who wants some variety in their action RPG life, and throwing out an action RPG in a well established world that already has legions of fans is a good starting point. Eko Software have taken Games Workshop’s long-running Warhammer universe and given it an action RPG flavour in Warhammer: Chaosbane, offering players dungeon crawling and loot collecting in a grim dark fantasy setting.

warcha1 (Copy)

Games based around the various Games Workshop universes are plentiful, and so anyone who picks up Warhammer: Chaosbane will likely already be familiar with the way the Warhammer world works. For this game, it all begins with the great chaos incursions and the power of Magnus bringing together the forces of good to fight them back. All of this has already happened however, and the player just happens to be in the room when, some time later, an evil sorcerer casts a spell on Magnus and leaves the player character looking decidedly guilty just as the Witch Hunters appear. While the player doesn’t end up being interrogated by the Witch Hunters, they do find themselves having to investigate whatever plan the forces of chaos now have, and they get to find loads and loads of loot at the same time.

The player gets to choose from four different characters in Chaosbane. While they each represent more regular classes, they are dictated by race in the game. The player can take a Human warrior, a High Elf mage, a Wood Elf ranger and a Dwarf who likes tattoos. Each character plays very differently, giving the player varied play styles to choose from, with melee and ranged attacks all covered. Each character can unlock new attacks as they progress in the game, which then have to be purchased with skill points. The levelling up and unlocking of new skills is quite flexible, allowing players to tweak their set up to suit whatever they face. Each character also has a strong move that needs to be charged up by collecting blood orbs, which are given out on defeating enemies.

The actual gameplay is familiar enough, with the player heading out from a hub area which also gives access to various services, such as a store to sell off unwanted loot. From the hub, players will drop into different areas with simple missions, but mostly to fight everything that moves and collect as much loot as possible. The gameplay is lovely and smooth, with the sort of power fantasy that you would expect, as the bodies of cultists and demons litter the various floors. There is a nice variety of environments to work through, all feeling very much in line with the Warhammer world.

warcha2 (Copy)

When it comes to the enemies, players will be fighting against the forces of chaos, which will mean everything from the Human cultists, to massive boss-level demons. The rich lore of Warhammer serves the game well in providing so many different types of adversary from the four different branches of chaos, although the game doesn’t do much to identify these enemies to those who are not familiar with the Warhammer world. Still, the variety is nice to look at and players will quickly be able to identify the threat they face.

Perhaps the most important thing in an action RPG is the loot. In Chaosbane, the loot is plentiful, but the variety is somewhat limited. This is down in part to the limited load outs of the four characters, forcing them to only use certain weapons or equipment. Also, players will find themselves swapping out equipment at such a rate that it becomes difficult to get excited about yet another axe.

This is perhaps the games biggest issue, the lack of variety. This is not only evident in the loot, but also in the core gameplay, which becomes more repetitive as the game progresses. Taking the edge of the repetition is the drop in/drop out co-op, allowing players to bring along a friend to liven up the action. Chaosbane really is at its best when played with someone else. Add to this what appears to be a healthy amount of support for the game post launch, and Warhammer: Chaosbane could prove to be around for quite some time.

warcha3 (Copy)

Warhammer: Chaosbane is a really solid action RPG set within the popular Warhammer fantasy world. The developers have done a great job of bringing the familiar gothic fantasy style to the game. The gameplay may not have the depth of certain other ARPGs, and as a result suffers from repetition, but it still manages to perform perfectly well and is great fun when played with a friend. All in all, Warhammer: Chaosbane is one of the better action RPGs around, and certainly worth a look by both Warhammer fans and fans of the genre.




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