'Total War: Warhammer 3' Is A Masterpiece
Every once in a while a game comes along that makes you realize just how good games can be. Total War: Warhammer 3 is that game. It makes you feel stimulated by the game play, challenged by the diabolical AI, delighted with the emergent storytelling, and ultimately proud of your abilities as a general. (Or slightly ashamed for new players, because this game, while excellent, has one of the steeper learning curves in strategy games.) The game is the pinnacle of design and world building for the team at Creative Assembly. If you’re not playing it, you really should be.
The premise is ambitious: you control a small region of a fantasy world where factions vie for control of the map. Who you choose as your starting lord determines what units you have access to, where you begin, and often, who you can ally with. Politicking with other AI controlled faction leaders to trade, team-up, and fight against is a huge part of the game. Part of the game is done in “campaign”, building up your settlements, strengthening alliances, and moving your armies around a vast map. The other half takes place in real time strategy battles with incredibly detailed movements and complex character stats.
Play in a more focused story driven mode or play in a sandbox that’s yours to conquer in Immortal Empires mode. There are over two hundred and seventy starting factions in Immortal Empires, each with their own allegiances, aims, and armies. No two games will ever be alike. Each faction has specific strengths that really mean there’s something for everyone to like about the game. Do you want to conquer the map in a wanton frenzy of battle fueled bloodlust? Consider the demonic hordes of Khorne. (It’s got the juice.) Maybe you’d like to manipulate the inner workings of the Elvish court to bring glory to your name? Check out any one of the snobby High Elf lords. Or perhaps you wish to restore the natural balance of things and protect the enchanted forests populated by sentient tree people? Give the Wood Elves a go. To play all of the dozens of playable lords, you’ll need the first two games as well, but it’s worth it for the hundreds of hours of enjoyment you’ll receive. If any of this sounds appealing to you, check the game out. And maybe watch some beginner tips on YouTube. It really is a steep learning curve.