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Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade Preliminary Speculation

By David Piner -

My finger was carefully spamming the F5 key to refresh Spark to see the latest E3 coverage when I found a snippet of news that made my heart skip a beat, another announcement of a Warhammer 40,000 MMORPG titled Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade. Behaviour Interactive, Inc  are the developers behind this, which comes as a big surprise to all of us because BHVR works more in the casual sector (Sims 3 Wii, Naughty Bear, etc.) with just a few non-casual games under their belt (namely Wet and Star Citizen!). This totally isn’t a studio we’d expect to namedrop one of the most grimdark franchises out there, but hey, they’re working on it.

My initial emotions range from currently building my underground fortress to lock myself away from humanity as I purge the heretics from the galaxy and relive the period of time where I disconnected from the world as I played Dawn of War II multiple times over just to listen to “Waste not what the Emperor provides” and another part of me that’s full of anxiety and fear over the fact that we’re looking at an MMO from a non-MMO developer on the consoles with a major IP that has had, let’s just say, not that bright of a history in the gaming market.

Previous Outings

For instance, there is Warhammer Online. While I don’t want to speak any ill of Mythic, we can all admit the game had problems and quite a few of them at that. Then there is Space Marine, while it’s a great game, we can all once again agree that there are some problems. Then there is the Warhammer 40k MMO that was no longer an MMO and then kind of is just, you know, gone considering THQ closed down.

There are some instances of the franchise translating well to video games. Space Hulk, if you’ve never played it, is one of the best PC games (on the list of the 1000s of other best PC games) of all time. It was difficult, scary, and pretty much lived up to the lore in Space Hulk. Then there is WH40k Chaos Gate which was pretty good for when it came out.

Then there is Dawn of War 2 a game that is so hit or miss, I’m shocked and surprised by how many people either absolutely love or absolutely hate the game. Hate is a strong word, more like, “isn’t their cup of tea.” Personally I think it’s fantastic and I’ve played through the original and the expansion with both glee and happiness.

WH40K Background

The Emperor’s Guiding Light

The question is can the emperor guide humanity into not only a strong WH40K game, but a strong MMORPG? Will chaos reign and all worship of the Emperor cease? That’s a great question and one I’m sure we will find out long, long, long from now. 2015 to be exact.

As far as speculating, I would like to say the voice acting sounds top tier. On the website you can listen to some previews of the voice acting, which sounds very grimdark and that’s about all we know. The game will go through nine phases and we’re at phase one, which is the game is announced. Oh and it’s probably going to ben action game (lock and load those bolters). That’s it. Oh and probably RVR from this phrasing:

In the game, players choose a Warhammer 40,000® race and fight directly as one of their warriors in massive conflicts for territory. It will be up to each faction’s community to determine their own destiny as they vie for control of an entire planet.

So that’s about all we know right now, at least today, but more information should be coming out in the near future, but with a late 2015 release window we’re a good two years from launch, assuming there is no delays. Anything could and will change between now and then.

The non-MMO MMO Company

There is a lot of vitriol coming from 40k fans that a non-MMO developer is working on an MMO, but interestingly enough Behaviour has some awesome talent. A tweet from Craig Morrison, Creative Director at Funcom’s Montreal MMO studio, sort of hints at some exciting talent from Funcom working over at Behaviour (but with any sort-of kind of things, you have to wait for an official announcement).

40k fans will want to sign up to track this one - bhvr.com/eternalcrusade/ Being made by some of the ex-Funcom folks now at Behaviour ...

— Craig Morrison (@Silirrion) June 11, 2013

If that’s true, that’s a first step for Behaviour to gain some relevancy. The second step is to note that they’re working on Star Citizen, which is kind of a big deal. So even if their previous lineup screams casual gaming, they’ve made some big recent leaps into the non-casual market.

Though for this to be a successful MMO, it has to pull off a few key aspects – first it has to do action MMO well, second it has to do Warhammer 40k well, and third it has to do MMO in general well. There is a lot of time and hopefully some great talent available to see that happen. I'm excited and so should you.

As far as races, since RvR was mentioned I'm sure it'll be Order, Chaos, and "bad guys." Since we can all hope they split it up into three factions, if nothing else give Tyranids their own faction all to themselves. Speaking of races, what are you hoping makes it into the game? Let us know in the comments section below.

That's pretty much all there is to discuss right now. In the meantime, stay tuned to Ten Ton Hammer for continuing coverage of this exciting announcement.

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