Since their emergence in the early 1980s, miniature war games from Games Workshop became immensely popular. Vast universes of Warhammer Fantasy Battle and Warhammer 40k have inspired many video game developers to create unforgettable titles. Today, let’s take a look at least some of them.
The Old World
Since the time of its first edition in 1983, Warhammer Fantasy Battle has been one of the most popular fantasy universes of all time. It serves as the canvas for many games, both analog and digital. Warhammer’s Old World is a dark place where the armies of Order and Destruction clash endlessly. The different sides of this eternal conflict, plus their vast countries and cities can be well seen on this map.
Spearheading the forces of Order is The Empire. Its absolute ruler occasionally allies with the ancient races of High Elves and Wood Elves. Noble knights of Bretonnia, and mighty Dwarfen warriors also sometimes fight alongside the Empire’s ranks. Opposing them are endless forces of Chaos. Legions of iron-clad warriors, ferocious marauders, verminous Skaven, and hordes of Beastmen. Let’s not forget the green-skinned Orcs and vicious Dark Elves.
Want to test your strength as one of the Old World warlords? Try playing the following titles and see if you’re up to the task.
Warhammer: Shadow of the Horned Rat
Although preceded by the HeroQuest series, this game made by SSI was definitely the first ambitious take on the Warhammer universe. Shadow of the Horned Rat combines real-time tactical battles with strategic and management options to give players a well-rounded experience. As a leader of a mercenary company, you must rescue the Border Princes from the hordes of Skaven and Orcs. The game received good reviews and spawned a sequel – Dark Omen.
Warhammer: Mark of Chaos – Gold Edition
This title takes things a level higher than its predecessors – both in terms of scale and visuals. This time, you take command of The Empire and High Elves’ forces poised against Chaos armies allied with the Skaven. The expansion, Battle March, added the additionally the armies of Orcs and Dark Elves and new, unique units and skills. Warhammer: Mark of Chaos – Gold Edition was unavailable for years, but now returns in big style on modern computers. All thanks to the cooperation between GOG and Games Workshop.
Mordheim: City of the Damned
As the leader of a small war band, you must venture into the streets of the cursed imperial metropolis in search of treasures and sacred artifacts. Mordheim: City of the Damned is a challenging turn-based game that requires a lot of resilience to finish. Even with its high levels of difficulty, it didn’t discourage Warhammer fans. They even praised the game for being true to the tabletop version released in 1999 by Games Workshop.
The first hack ‘n’ slash game set in the Old World. Warhammer: Chaosbane sets you up against the forces of Chaos you must face alone or with 4 friends in co-op mode. You can choose from 5 character classes and simply set off on an action-filled journey across the sewers of Nuln and ruined streets of Praag. The game stands out not only for its dynamic gameplay but also thanks to the story written by Mike Lee and music from Chance Thomas.
Warhammer 40,000 was originally created in 1987 as a futuristic version of its fantasy counterpart. For over three decades, those two universes coexisted in harmony, with both having devoted fans. Set in the 41st millennium, Warhammer 40,000 features similar factions as Fantasy Battle but on a much larger, galactic scale. For example, the Empire was replaced by the Imperium of Man, the vastness of which can easily be seen on this page.
Astra Militarum, Adeptus Mechanicus, Adepta Sororitas, and various chapters of Space Marines can be counted among mankind’s strongest military assets. Other Warhammer 40,000 armies include the Aeldari, Orks bent on destruction, and the forces of Chaos (with their Chaos Space Marines allies). The 41st millennium also brings with it a few unique so-called Xenos armies, like the monstrous Tyranids, immortal Necrons, and emergent T’au Empire.
That’s quite a lot of sides to choose from. Luckily the following games are here to guide us through the dark times of the 41st millennium:
Final Liberation: Warhammer Epic 40,000
This is one of the most renowned classics in the Warhammer 40,000 universe. This turn-based strategy game features 85 available units and over 30 playable scenarios. The gameplay was based on the rules of the Epic system designed to set battles on a much larger scale than the base Warhammer 40,000. In Final Liberation: Warhammer Epic 40,000, you can lead Space Marines on their war against Orks for the control of a planet called Volistad.
Warhammer 40,000: Chaos Gate
Again, you lead the Space Marines to war, but this time against the daemonic Chaos forces led by Lord Zymran. In a string of turn-based tactical battles, you must take hold of an artifact called Concordat Chaosium. As opposed to Final Liberation’s vast armies, in Warhammer 40,000: Chaos Gate you command a force of up to 50 Space Marines. Yet, every battle remains as ferocious as ever in the 41st Millenium.
Warhammer 40,000: Mechanicus
Here you join one of the most technologically advanced forces in the Imperium of Man – The Adeptus Mechanicus. As Magos Dominus Faustinius, you’ll lead the expedition to take control of the planet of Silva Tenebris and expunge the Necron army from it. Warhammer 40,000: Mechanicus is a turn-based tactical game that enables you to customize your team and its members with modern and long-forgotten tech. This allows you to become an even more dangerous threat to your enemies.
Necromunda: Hired Gun
After a few strategies, now it’s time for a dynamic first-person shooter. In Necromunda: Hired Gun you take on the role of a mercenary operating in one of the Imperium’s hive worlds. You take on contracts as you make your way through the nasty criminal underworld that consumes Necromunda. All the while your most important job is to stay alive!
Of course, these are just a few exciting Warhammer games you can buy on GOG. We’ll write more about games like Space Hulk: Deathwing or Battlefleet Gothic: Armada next time. For now, it’s up to you to scream “For the Emperor!” or unleash the mighty Orkish “Waaagh!” and prepare yourself for battle.