REVIEW: ‘Warhammer Chaosbane’ Brings the TableTop to Life (Xbox One)

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Warhammer: Chaosbane

Warhammer Chaosbane is a dungeon-crawling action role-playing game (ARPG) developed by Eko Software and published by Bigben set in the Warhammer Fantasy setting created by Games workshop. The game pits the player against countless hordes of vile monsters in their search to save the Old World from the forces of Chaos.

At the start of Warhammer Chaosbane, the player begins by choosing one of four different characters to play as. Each has their own back story and motivation, along with unique abilities and skills. While I spent most of my time as the high elf mage, I also tried the wood elf ranger, and the dwarf slayer.All three played very differently and had several different trees of upgrades to explore. These upgrades unlocked at a steady pace, and the ability to respec your character at will gives the player free-reign to try out different combinations of powers to see what plays best for them and adapt as the game goes on. For me, I greatly enjoyed summoning troops of dryads to hold back enemies as the ranger, and unleashing blistering waves of fire as the mage.

As with most games in its genre, along with skills and abilities, gear is also plentiful as the player forges their path through the game. While the benefits of this gear are not the most exciting, being restricted to stat increases only, the visuals provided are excellently done. There are countless different visual styles for gear, and they all look pretty cool.

This cool-factor extends to the game’s visual design as a whole as creature designs are lifted right from the classic table top game and put into beautiful full motion. Whether it was a horde of nurglings, or a mighty Khorne Bloodletter I never grew tired of seeing what would challenge me next on my quest.

The only thing that equaled the excellent creature designs were amazing combat visuals. Gouts of fire, flashes of lighting, and storms of arrows are all beautifully crafted and are visual delights. Placed in front of gorgeous backgrounds that truly capture the high fantasy feel of scale and grandeur, one can truly get lost in the power fantasy being sold here.

The only aspect of the presentation that leaves a bit to be desired is the story. While the player is initially given a task of great importance they quickly find themselves mired in missions that only tangentially connect to the plot, and are obviously there simply to extend the playtime of the game. My difficulties with the story were not helped by the voice work either. While it never fell into the realm of grating, characters are often acted as a little too over the top, leaning into stereotypes a bit too hard.

The lore is effectively utilized for a number of purposes that will leave long time Warhammer Fantasy fans happy. Whether it’s traveling to classic locales like Kisleav and Nuln, or interacting with High Loremaster Techlis, there is a lot of care put into immersing the player in the Old World.

The only thing that hurt the first fourteen hours of my playthrough was the repetitiveness of many encounters. With waves of minor enemies throwing themselves at you time and again you quickly learn when there is no real threat to the hoard you are mowing through. There are encounters in every area that break up the repetition with larger enemies, but there is a bit too much sameness to the bulk of the game for it to reach the same highs as many of the greats of its genre.

The truly disappointing thing for me in Warhammer Chaosbane came in the final area of the game. Sadly, my game repeatedly froze, crashed, and booted me back to the Xbox One dashboard. It happened multiple times and I was not able to complete the game because of it. I would recommend researching other reviews to see if this seems like a common problem for other platforms as well before purchasing.

Warhammer Chaosbane sets out to take players through an action-filled adventure in the heart of the Old World and, barring technical difficulties, it mostly succeeds. The standard editions of Warhammer Chaosbane are available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC on June fourth. The Magnus Edition and Digital Deluxe Edition are both currently available.

 

Warhammer: Chaosbane
  • 4/10
    Rating - 4/10
4/10

TL; DR

Warhammer Chaosbane sets out to take players through an action filled adventure in the heart of the Old World and, baring technical difficulties, it mostly succeeds.

*would be a 8 if I could’ve completed the game