Thursday 8 July 2010

A speculative summer for WAR

As we saw in the last producer’s letter, Mythic has big news that they want to be shouting from the rooftops, but for whatever reasons they can’t and we’ve got to wait until the end of summer to hear it. So the obvious question and something there will be much speculation about, is what could it be?
WAR goes Free to play? No chance whatsoever. I will be absolutely bloody gob-smacked if it was this, shortly before I quit the game. I don’t consider this as an even vaguely realistic option for WAR; this is not some PvE grind fest where we would actually want to buy vanity items from some pony cash shop.
Expansion? My money is firmly and without doubt on this as the big news. Anything else would be lame and a let down of epic proportions, so the real question is what would an expansion bring to WAR? I think there are a few options, varying in likelihood and split into two major groupings.
It could be either a free “Live” expansion like Land of the Dead, or a full on paid expansion. We may even get both, it just depends how much and what Mythic has in the pipeline. It’s worth making some distinctions here, as there are some things that it would be a bit cheeky to add as a paid expansion and should instead come as free live expansions or in patches. I think these are the options:
Live expansion/patch
Revamped Fortresses.
The four missing cities.
A new Land of the Dead style zone.
Paid expansion
Playable third faction.
NPC controlled third faction.
New races for the existing factions.
Lets look at these individually…
Live Expansions/patches
Revamped Fortresses
We already know this is coming. I’m expecting this to be patched in sometime over the next few months, probably as part of the 1.4 patch. As such this being the big announcement, while possible, would make no sense. We already know its coming for certain.
The four missing cities
I’ve gone blank on where, but I’m sure I saw an interview recently where Carrie was asked about the cities and she responded very briefly but with a glint in here eye, if such a thing is possible in text form… Perhaps it was just my imagination? Regardless, this for me is a no brainer and is a live expansion just waiting to happen. The gameworld was built with 6 cities in mind and work was done on them so it’s not like totally starting from scratch. Also they could easily slot into the campaign in a number of ways, could help spread people around the world more and would add major and dramatic new content. I’ve seen footage of the Dwarf city from early beta and whilst it was in a fairly basic stage visually, you can see how awesome it would have been.
A new Land of the Dead style zone
It could happen, there’s a wealth of options in the Warhammer world, but I think this shouldn’t be done yet. As the series of posts Biggsie and I are releasing demonstrates, there is so much wasted landscape already; surely it would make more sense to use that better? As a thought, the side zones like West Praag, Cinderfall, etc, perhaps they could be turned into Land of the Dead type areas? The main problem with this alone is it just wouldn’t be enough.
Paid Expansions/patches
Playable third faction
Probably the best, yet by far the biggest and most difficult thing that Mythic could do. My head tells me this is not going to happen, I think it will be the new playable races for existing factions. Everything sensible tells me that that is what we will get. It’s just I’ve got this strange little inkling that a playable third faction is on the cards, a little nagging sensation, like my spider sense tingling. It’s probably just foolish and overly optimistic hope taunting me, but hmmm, no! No it just can’t be. Despite it’s potential awesomeness and with the right moves it being perfectly possible, it’s simply too big, too complicated and probably seen as far too risky.
NPC controlled third faction
If Skaven are introduced and they are not playable then in gaming terms this would be the biggest self-own since, well… actually quite recently, as this year people in the UK voted in the conservative party and we’re now governed by smarmy bastards who don’t give a toss if you don’t speak posh. Oh well done everyone, well bloody done, epic sodding fail on a national scale. Despite everything they said, we are getting cutbacks on pensions, care for the elderly/disabled, hospital and police and you’re surprised? Ahh but rich people are getting richer by default while David “never worked a day in his life” Cameron knocks one out over a picture of Margaret Thatcher. Oh shock horror. Learn from history for crying out loud… well I suppose you can’t, what with the libraries closing and all.
Uhm sorry non UK readers, bit of a rant tangent… I’ll stop myself getting further distracted. As you’ve probably guessed, with me being of sound mind and body, I really don’t like my new government or this PvE faction as an option for WAR. People have been asking for playable Skaven since before launch, so to introduce them as unplayable would be incredibly stupid. Undead however… that’s got some potential, but the PvE would still be a concern, WAR doesn’t need a return to the infamous RvE days.
New races for the existing factions
This is what I think will happen. Skaven for Destruction and Wood Elves for Order. Or possibly a Bretonnian/Wood Elf combination... Hmmm that could work really well you know. Questing Knight, Wardancer, Waywatcher and Damsel. Hadn’t thought of that before, interesting, not perfect lore wise, but workable. Skaven are a doddle to make, they’ve actually got so many viable options for careers that the only tough bit is deciding which not to use.
So…. Skaven join the forces of Destruction and unleash the Red Plague, which threatens everything. With their lands under threat the Bretonnians and/or Wood Elves join the war alongside the existing forces of Order. A new racial pairing is introduced that goes from Bretonnia/Loren to one of the major Skaven cities (but not Skavenblight). Underground zones and tunnel systems like in Dark Age of Camelot? Yes please!
So there you have what I think the options are and what I think will happen. What do you think? Anything I’ve not thought of?


  1. If it will be anything else than a third faction, i will be disappointed.

    So, i will be disappointed.

  2. "Anything I’ve not thought of?"

    Who's going to pay for all those expensive services you don't want to see cut.


  3. Maladorn - Stop wasting billions on the Olympics, the EU, irrelevant wars, get rid of the consultant culture in the public sector (the costs are unbelievable), etc. There's plenty of ways of saving money that don't involve shafting our national services.

    When social services starts only funding people with the highest level of critical needs (which is going to happen, wait for it... about.... now), unemployment sky rockets, the crime rate goes insane again and we have a return to the monstrous NHS wait times of the 80s, well, coallition government goes bye bye and then we get the minority government that people actually voted for. :P

    Mark my words mate in 5 years time, the tories will be out, the lib dems will no longer exist (since very few Lib Dem voters would ever vote tory) and Labour will be back in again and for the long term once more. Not that I'm a labour voter myself, I "was" lib dem.

  4. In my opinion an absolutely new start (aka war 2) is possible too.

  5. I'm going with a paid expansion introducing new races (possibly careers) for the existing realms with a massive overhaul of the world (think Cataclysm). It's a bit optimistic but I think that most other possibilites are either non-realistic or too small to be a big announcement (and would disappoint).

  6. Instead of a Trackback:

  7. Personally I can't see a third faction happening, I just don't think they can make it work without going back over and re-doing every zone to accommodate them.
    Most likely I reckon it'll be a new racial pairing but I think Skaven/Lizardmen is more likely. I think it would be easier to bring in plot wise, be a interesting change terrain wise and fighting through dense jungles and through claustrophobic tunnels would be great fun.
    Would be easy enough to shoehorn in lore wise and they've always been from the lore a rival pair. Plus I think Lizardmen have been yammered after almost as much as the ratties since the start!

  8. Lizardmen are easy and yet impossible at the same time, both for lore reasons. Lizardmen and Skaven have a history of fighting each other, plus with the Lustria locations it's a real shoe in. It could have some awesome locations and careers available.

    But there's one huge and unavoidable problem. The first time someone walks their Saurus through Altdorf, communicates with and buys something from a merchant. In that moment the lore cracks right down in the middle in a huge and epic way. I just can't see how that can work without Gamesworkshop blocking it.

  9. Aye the Alfdorf kinda thing I'd not thought of, I'll have to have a think about about it and see if it could be made to work, maybe try and eek a post out of it :-)

  10. Reading the latest warhammer rule book due out in a few days, skaven are firmly (within reason these are skaven) in the desto camp. So I dont think we are getting a third faction.


  11. Eldard/Gorefist9 July 2010 at 08:51


    you where talking about lizard men well yea skaven being one of there biggist enemies but all so Dark elfs who raid there temples & most of the time fail..

    But i do think this can work lizard men all so have been allies to high elfs in the past as well as small human colonies settleing in lustra all so..

    But it would have to be a new spawning one that could speak human or at least trying to reason with them because of common enemies (AKA skaven & chaos & Dark elfs)..

    But like all ways we have to wait and see


  12. Aye, I’ve come to the same conclusion as Eldard. Think it would work with a new spawning and a particular Pyramid City, don’t think it would be would be Lore Shattering and would make a good plot hook, would certainly bring a lot of attention back to WAR with a completely new “look” zone area. Chucked a few ideas out on my blog about it, think it’s fairly solid as it goes now.

  13. A nee spawning... Hmm I hadn't considered that. A new spawning to counter the threat of chaos at this time... Nice one chaps I think you just put Lizards back on the table. That is workable.

  14. I hope they announce something in the near future. I let my sub run out, but would be happy to re sub if something good comes along. I would love to see an expansion, or a total revamp of T4.

  15. Eldard/Gorefist9 July 2010 at 13:39


    one more thing mate..

    As it goes for Skaven thats a simple they will do any thing for warpstone..

    And where is the one place where we can go to where there is loads of the stuff The chaos wastes..

    Tchar'zanek in all his wisdom of the ways of chaos saw the rat men and there pure hatered of the weaklings of the empire..
    blah blah blah

    So more or less a deal was made some thing like that would make the Skaven cooperate with them helping destro in exchange for loads of warpstone..

    The only issue i have it shouldn't be one of the mayjor Skaven clans it should be a warlord clan more or less mixing pestilens,moulder,eshin,skryre in to a warlord clan allowing for mutiable classes for Skaven

  16. I'm not sure if anybody has brought up this point yet (haven't had time to read everybody's responses): if a new pair of playable races were to be introduced, what would each classes specialisation be? Mythic has already covered all the bases that I can think of in terms of role. For example, if you want to play a healer you have a single target healer (AM), a group healer (WP) and a mobile, supporting healer (RP). What would a Skaven healers specialisation be? Lifetap? If it was life tap, then what would the point of a Skaven DPS class? It would just be a Skaven healer with slightly more damage and no self-healing abilities.

    This is a genuine question, as I don't really know ANYTHING about Old World Warhammer lore (I'm a 40k fan).

  17. Skaven have a very wide range of options for careers in WAR. I won't go into detail as its a long topic but quickly here are some examples...

    Stormvermin - tank

    Clan Eshin Assassin - MDPS stealth based rat ninjas

    Clan Skryre Warlock Engineers - RDPS Half magic, half technology, lightning guns and devious stuff.

    Poisonwind Globadiers - M/RDPS short range poison gas, acid throwing nasty buggers.

    Grey Seer - RDPS or Healer? Very powerful spell caster, lots of options. I would go with life tap and uber buffs.

    Master Moulder - A pet class, with swarms of rats and rat ogres and stuff... could be a healer, DPS, whatever

    There's a load more options too.

  18. Sorry, I wasn't talking about what types of Skaven could be applied to what archetypes, I meant what speciality would those archetypes have? For example, the Witch Hunter excels at hit and run type attacks with their stealth whilst the White Lion is more mobile and (somewhat) more survivable. What would the Skaven archetypes focus on?

  19. Ahh got ya. I think that's a proper post in itself, I'll have to have a think about it.

    Though one think I would want to do is really try and capture the character of Skaven, the dirty cheating rat bastards that they are.

    Also I think it would be good to properly try and break the healer only heals bit. One thing I would definately do is make the Grey Seer a healer with moderate RDPS and excellent life tap healing, So less damage but much more healing than the current lifetaps. And absolutely no healing that isnt from a damage ability. So it's impossible to back line heal. A tricky one to balance perhaps.

  20. I wouldn't definitely try playing the Grey Seer as you envision it, or whatever it's mirror may be on Order side.


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