The Battlefleet Gothic IP is a unique mix of science fantasy space combat mixed with thematic elements from 18th century naval warfare. Titanic ships kilometres long ramming and broadsiding one another in the silence of the void endears itself to me, and it shouldn’t surprise you to hear that I’m a fan. Ever since the announcement of the video game adaption (titled Battlefleet Gothic: Armada) earlier this year; I have been desperate to get my hands on any and all information about how Tindalos Interactive is progressing with their take on the tabletop game. While at E3 I was able to watch a demonstration of the game as it currently stands. Here are my observations:
-The campaign will allow for a fair amount of customisation of captains, crews, and ships. Damage sustained in battle will remain until repaired and this can be localised to specific ship sub-systems such as weapons, engines, and the like.
-The campaign will feature the player defending against the Imperium against the 12th Black Crusade with the player strategic decisions about which zones to defend with their currently available ships. Planets will give different bonuses and the player will have to choose which to defend and which to abandon to the enemy. The Imperium will be the only playable faction in the campaign.
-The player can control all the ships in an engagement individually but options do exist to group them together into squadrons. Further customisation of individual ship AI is also available with various engagement stances and speeds to automate their maneuvers across the darkness of the void.
-Individual ships will also need to manage their power levels to maintain their shields and fire their weapons which will also run on a cooldown. Different weapons will have different firing arcs. Nova cannons will make an appearance in-game.
-Ramming and boarding will be present in the game with the cathedral ships of the Imperium plowing through their corrupted enemy vessels (and vice versa).
-The battles will take place on a 2D map, in keeping with the game’s tabletop origins. These maps will feature various celestial terrain like asteroids and debris. Destroyed ships will become terrain on the map with the wreck becoming cover behind which other ships can hide.
With the build I currently saw, there is still a significant amount of work which needs to be put in before its anywhere near completion. What I’ve seen so far however has whet my appetite and made me excited to see how the game develops further.
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