Warhammer 40000: Eternal Crusade
Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade is a third-person shooter based on Games Workshop's tabletop game of the same name. Join one of four factions and fight over objectives, or join PvE matches with other players, in an eternal struggle.
|Publisher: Behaviour Digital
Type: Third-person Shooter
Release Date: September 23, 2016
Pros: +Rich lore. +Four playable factions. +Extensive customization.
Cons: -Optimization issues. -Clunky UI. -Repetitive map design.
Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade Overview
Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade is a third-person shooter based on Games Workshop's tabletop game of the same name. Choose between four playable factions: Orks, Space Marines, Eldar, or Chaos Space Marines. As part of a faction players will either attack or defend a series of objectives across maps. Earn experience for performing actions and level up, unlocking a wider variety of available weapons and skills to dominate the battlefield. Utilize various vehicles to quickly cross terrain, or gun down opponents with the overwhelming might of a turret. Rip through enemies not just with rifle but use melee weapons such as chainsaws and power-fists to tear apart foes. If you're tired of fighting against players you can join PvE missions and defeat the Tyranid swarm.
Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade Key Features:
- Progression System - fight and improve your skills, modifying health, strike damage, weapon spread, and upgrade your weapons.
- Distinct Factional Classes - each faction has their own variety of classes, that can be distinguish through customizable loadouts that must be catered to the context of an engagement.
- Vehicles - don't just run and fire, but use iconic vehicles from the Warhammer 40K franchise to drive and shoot down enemy players.
- Melee Attacks - use swords, axes, and power-fists to tear your foes in half.
- PvE Gameplay - join other players and drop into an NPC Tyranid Hive to survive hordes of the ravenous swarm.
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Warhammer 40,000: Eternal CrusadeReview
By, Pat Roklos
Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade is another IP entry for a franchise with a never-ending library of games. To sum it up in one quick phrase, you can call Eternal Crusade “Battlefield with Warhammer.” But that’s a surface deep analogy for the people who refuse to get past the first paragraph, because Eternal Crusade is not the same as Battlefield; only at a glance. Eternal Crusade wants to be its own game, to redeem the Warhammer franchise, which has a sordid history of video game adaptations, with a few shining stars like Space Marine. Does Eternal Crusade save Warhammer games? Let’s find out.
How It Plays
After choosing your faction and class, you’re thrown onto a map with a few objective points, marked alphabetically. What’s your mission? Capture the objectives, or defend the objectives. It depends on which side your factions falls on for a particular fight. Familiar enough, right? Objectives serve as rallying points for firefights; they’re where you’ll spend most of your time engaged in combat while the world is a racetrack you’ll run along between objectives.
You die quick. Really quick. It’s almost always a terrible idea to roll across the land solo. If you encounter two people alone your chances of survival are low. Typically, the first person to see another is going to get the kill, and earring is a typical way to die—if you’re alone. Even hulking futuristic warrior brutes in hull-like armor go down with a few bullets. The name of the game is to join a squad, and decide where to attack. But, because you can’t spawn atop squad mates—and the playerbase seemingly dislikes in-game VOIP—you’ll spend most of your time following the crowd—if you want to live—and attacking or defending as a pack.
Friendly fire is on. Which I love. You will be killed by zealous teammates who can’t help but use your body as a shield to fire at enemies. Since your bullets are positively charged to every other player, it means you have to think before shooting. Can’t just hold down left-click when you’re surrounded by teammates. Well, you can, but you may not be forgiven.
There are four factions to choose between: Space Marines, Chaos Space Marines, Ork, and Eldar, with subdivisions for each of them. It’s a healthy mix. Each one has their own version of a fairly similar arsenal, with enough idiosyncratic choices to make them sui generis. And since you’re given four character slots, you can make one of each faction.
Within the faction itself you have further choices, such as Space Wolves for Space Marines, that don’t change how you play but imbue the game with 40k’s extensive lore. Fans of the tabletop can choose to play as their favorite set. I chose by the color scheme I liked best.
The Art Of Combat
Movement and running around is straightforward. If you played any other third-person shooter you will feel comfortable almost immediately, before the quirks wriggle through the cracks. Shooting is a matter of lining up your crosshair and pressing left-click. No need to worry about bullet-drop. Hitting a head will do more damage. Press CTRL, by default to zoom in, if you want to control your spray. Though running into the chaos and gunning players down is the best bet, with a few Space bars chucked in to roll out of the way of attacks.
Melee is odd. You swing your blade with right-click, and it doesn’t emit a sensation of control. Your avatar swings wildly until they meet an enemy; a spam festival. It does work, sometimes. Often, when you make contact you’ll stun your opponent and then have the chance to whittle away whatever remainds of their health. But it’s not satisfying. Melee is bland: a last-ditch effort when you’re out of bullets. There’s no tactical element beyond ensuring your distance and that there are walls on either side of your enemy so they can’t dodge out of the way. You’re better off sticking with guns and popping heads from afar.
Chip away enough HP and an enemy will be on their knees at which point you can perform an execution, which is a badass animation: a scene which captures what Warhammer is all about, grizzled brutality. If onl running around and capturing, or defending, objectives felt as sanguinary. When you see two tanks firing off salvos into one another’s hulls until one of them gets bored, you lose the sense of being engaged in a universe-spanning conflict.
Eternal Crusade’s presentation captures the fire and brimstone of an eternity of war. Maps are dark and grim, set in industrial wastelands with fire shooting out of smokestacks. The worlds feel like they’ve been ripped apart, as they should for any game prefaced with “Warhammer.” Yet, the maps are boring. Each one is essentially the same layout with a new skin, revolving around objectives and attack points, linked together by open spaces and condensed hallways. It lacks charm.
There is something off-putting to Warhammer’s visuals, beyond some optimization issues. It’s the blend of bleak colors and a construction themed user interface. Not to say Eternal Crusade doesn’t look fine. But for a game running on Unreal Engine 4 there’s a jarring placement between objects. Your character looks like a tabletop piece, while the world has a rustic quality and when the two interact there’s a visual conflict that the average—non-Warhammer enthusiast—player experiences.
Climbing The Talent Tree
Eternal Crusade has an almost RPG stylized leveling system, complete with a talent tree. As you perform positive actions within a match—fragging, defending a base, capturing, etc.—you earn experience, which translates into levels, which further translates into talent points that purchase minor upgrades, such as increased health or unlocking jet packs, additional classes, etc. The talents don’t translate to “overwhelming advantage.”
Premium players, those who purchase a game package, will have a few additional talents, and classes available to them, which don’t qualify as pay-to-win, but pay-to-support a game you like. It's a fine enough system, a way to keep players showing back up to battle. Though navigating the interface itself is clunky and non-intuitive. You might not even know it exists.
Final Verdict - Fair
Eternal Crusade is a fine game, a great addition for Warhammer fans. But for the avaerage playr, bland combat and jarring visuals hold Eternal Crusade back from striking mainstream success, along with a messy user interface that fails to be intuitive. For a regular shmoe, Eternal Crusade is just okay, a passable experience that quickly fades from memory once you log off, a game you don’t remember until you scroll down your Steam library and remember you've forgotten to uninstall it.
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Warhammer 40,000: Eternal CrusadeSystem Requirements
Operating System: Windows Vista / 7 / 8 / 10 (64 bit)
CPU: Intel Core i3 4170 or AMD FX-8120
Video Card: NVIDIA GTX 570 2.5GB or GTX 660 2GB or AMD HD7850 2GB
RAM: 6 GB RAM
Hard Disk Space: 40 GB
Operating System: Windows Vista / 7 / 8 / 10 (64 bit)
CPU: Intel Core i5-2300 or AMD FX-8300 or higher
Video Card: NVIDIA 780GTX or AMD R9 290X
RAM: 8GB RAM
Hard Disk Space: 40 GB
Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade Music & Soundtrack
Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade Additional Information
Developer: Behaviour Interactive
Game Engine: Unreal Engine 4
Studio Head: Miguel Caron
Lead Level Designer: Steven Lumpkin
Lead Progreammer: Patrick Balthazar
Lead Game Designer: Brent Ellison
Creative Director: David Ghozland
Writer: Graham McNeill
Narrative Designer: Ivan Mulkeen
Other Platforms: Playstation 4, Xbox One (paused)
Other Languages: French, German, Russian
Reveal Date: 2013
Closed Alpha Test Date: September 14, 2015
Free-to-play: March 17, 2017
Release Date: September 23, 2016
Development History / Background:
Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade is developed by Canadaian independent game studio Behaviour Interactive. It's based on the tabletop game of the same name by Games Workshop. The game was announced at E3 2013 and the first wave of Closed Alpha testing began on September 14, 2015. Graham McNeill, author of Horus Heresy: A Thousand Son, and Narrative Designer Ivan Mulkeen are writing the story of the endless conflict on Arkhona. Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade left Early Access after eight months and released on September 23, 2016 as a buy-to-play title. On March 17, 2017, Eternal Crusade transitioned to a free-to-play model, and the game's daily active user count tripled.