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Xbox One Game Review
Get ready to engage in the first video game adaptation of Games Workshop's tabletop game Mordheim. Set in the Warhammer World's decimated Empire city, Mordheim: City of the Damned is a turn-based tactical game where you lead warbands into bloody and lethal skirmishes. The game blends RPG elements, fast-paced tactical combat and intricate unit customization in a time wrought by chaos and rivalry where only the strongest survive...
For tabletop gaming fans, Games Workshop's Mordheim comes to consoles. There are few intricate and engaging turn-based tactical games for the Xbox One, and thankfully Mordheim: City of the Damned hits the nail on the head. It gets the balance right between the limitations of the console's control system, when compared to PC, while keeping everything running along at a fair pace.
After a twin tailed comet crashed on Mordheim, the City of the Damned turned into a terrifying battlefield where rival warbands fight fiercely for the control of key neighbourhoods, looking for glory and fortune by acquiring the very valuable Wyrdstone fragments. You must chose your alliance from iconic Mordheim warbands and lead your troops in epic battles. Visit the four corners of the City of the Damned to complete multiple missions in the solo campaign, or challenge other players in enthralling multiplayer modes.
Mordheim: City of the Damned takes place during a grim conflict where factions, empires, and mercenaries fight for gems, called Wyrdstone, created by a comet impact that destroyed the depraved city of Mordheim. It will be your responsibility, amidst this chaos, to take command of your Warband and storm the ruins to battle other parties, avoid abominable monsters, and gather Wyrdstone. Each nail-biting decision has its consequences: Permanent death or crippling injury that could leave your recruits without a limb or an eye. The game includes a full campaign for each of the four Warbands: The Human Mercenaries, the Sisters of Sigmar, the Skaven of Clan Eshin, and the Cult of the Possessed. Once you feel ready, you can also enlist your single-player Warband to compete in online multiplayer skirmishes.
It was only a couple of weeks ago that I was reviewing XCOM 2, a game I was really looking forward to playing but was surprised at how buggy it was on release. Mordheim is in a similar vein, there are a lot of similarities but thankfully not many noticeable bugs.
You're strongly advised to play through the tutorial levels. Some of these are playable levels (which help you get to grips with the controls), whilst the others are text based. These tutorials ease the novice into the gaming style, without alienating the seasoned gamer. They help to flesh out the look and feel of the game, but only really scratch the surface of what you can do - that is up to the individual to discover on their own.
Games that charge for additional content (like skins) really annoy me. It's one of the reasons I fell out of love with the Call of Duty franchise and I was a little worried that Mordheim had gone down this road. The game almost lost me at the start. After completing the tutorials you're given a choice of Warbands and after briefly reading through the backgrounds I opted for Witch Hunters, only to discover that they are an add-on purchase Warband, which you must pay £8 to unlock. Thankfully this seems to be the only add-on at present.
The game play is fairly simple once you get to grips with it. In the early levels I found it easier to keep your Warband together and let the enemy come to you. This way you can pick them off without doing any serious damage to your team. But, as the levels progress other tactics are better employed.
The gaming arenas are large and detailed and the animation of the characters are well realised. There's a member of the Skaven of Clan Eshin that wields daggers that look like glow sticks, and in the darker areas of the map these look incredible effective.
A thoroughly engaging and enjoyable game.
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