Waging WAR: On the distant horizon

Greg Waller
G. Waller|11.27.10

Sponsored Links

Waging WAR: On the distant horizon
It's that time again! Yes, Greg's imagination has escaped its tiny 3x3 cell and is off spreading ruination and ruffling feathers across the countryside, armed with absurd notions and a not-so-surprising lack of reason and logic. This week's Waging WAR attempts to follow along in its wake as we take another look at the potential future of Warhammer Online: The Age of Reckoning.

WAR released with an impressive lineup of playable armies and careers, setting the stage for the Age of Reckoning with a 3v3, two-sided RvR layout. In the summer following the official release of WAR, we got our first free content expansion featuring the Tomb Kings in the Land of the Dead. Just recently, we finally, at long last, got our Skaven wishes granted. In the spirit of the holiday season coming up, I've decided to look ahead at what may come in the future as we approach new horizons in WAR. Even if we discount Brettonia as another flavor of civilized human (akin in many ways to the Empire), the Daemons of Chaos as being already represented in some form or another as a part of Tzeentch's Warhost, and the Ogre Kingdoms (and other assorted Dogs of War) as being more-or-less an NPC army, we're still left with some excellent offerings from Warhammer lore as far as where WAR can go in the foreseeable future.

Follow along after the break as I take another look at what's left on the table to play with for future packs and expansions for WAR.

Even with the impressive cast of armies and characters already represented in the game, there is still plenty to pick and choose from in WAR's deep lore and background as the game moves forward in the search for new content. Whether Mythic finally caves in and delivers the fabled Third Faction is anyone's guess, but by now, people are starting to accept that it just isn't going to happen. The game is what it is. With that said, however, there's plenty of room for expansion and new content featuring the remaining armies in Warhammer lore.

The Beastmen already have a huge selection of models and characters in-game and can be found pretty much throughout the various tiers and realms. Also, since they generally ally themselves with Khorne, there could be some excellent setups for them to enter the game. It isn't that Khorne and Tzeentch are hated enemies; they are both Chaos Gods after all. But Khorne does look down on all things magic, as he considers its use a sign of weakness. If they ever do join the fray in a more meaningful way, I think I would love to see Beastlords or Bray Shamans as playable in some capacity. And although the Minotaurs, Centigors and Harpies are a stretch for player careers, I can definitely see Gors and Ungors wreaking their own version of tick-infested, blood-crazed havoc on the battlefields of WAR.

The Lizardmen, a strange, draconian army hailing from Lustria, also have reasons to enter the game from stage-left and participate in the events taking place in the Age of Reckoning -- as if the presence of their ever-hated nemesis, the Skaven, weren't reason enough from the get-go. I've spoken about Lizardmen in the past, and I still think that their Slann Mage-Priests would make a fine PC despite their awesome power, in much the same way the High Elf Archmages already fit so well in the game. Similarly, I think that the hilarious and brutal Kroxigors could present themselves as a welcome match for the Skaven Rat Ogres. Oh, the comedy of a unit that has a chance to become so feral with combat rage that it requires a weapon-chain so as to not lose its weapon is golden.

Although the Vampire Counts are known to hail from several regions, they are quite well-known for their hatred of the Empire, especially the Von Carsteins. Although Games Workshop has said several times that the Vampire Counts will never see the light of day in Warhammer Online (pun intended), there's no reason to count them out (there I go again). I mean, what could be cooler than a proper ranged-casting pet career as a Necrarch or Necromancer, other than maybe a Blood Dragon or Black Knight tank? And since we're talking in forbidden realms here anyway, why not take a leap and say that the one archetype that's never really been done -- the melee mage -- could easily be fulfilled by Lahmians. And who wouldn't love to see the Strigoi as a playable career, despite their obvious lack of armor customization options?

Finally, the Wood Elves, of all the remaining armies, have seen and heard the most of what the Age of Reckoning has to offer and have been defiled on several occasions already by Chaos (see: Lost Vale, Hunter's Vale, and countless PQs). But the Wood Elves themselves have not yet made themselves known and continue to hide and observe. I, for one, would love to see the animations for units like the Eternal Guard with their double-bladed staves or the dual-wielding Wardancers. Or what about a stealth-based ranged sniper career as a Waywatcher? Whatever the case may be, wouldn't it be pure win to see a Treekin in RvR going toe-to-toe with a Rat Ogre?

If Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning does look to the other remaining armies in search of new grounds to plant the seeds of content, though, what I've mentioned above is all that remains. Can we hope for a third faction with careers selected from the Lizardmen, Beastmen, and Wood Elves? Is there a vision of Castle Drakenhof as an endgame PvE dungeon for RR100 characters, or Sylvania as an entirely new RvR region a la Land of the Dead? Perhaps we can look forward to the Wood Elves joining Order and the Beastmen joining Destruction, each with its own selection of playable careers, and the Lizardmen entering as monster-play classes to counter the Verminous Horde that even now sets its sights on the annihilation of all things under the sun?

Who knows! All of this is a long ways off anyway. Leave your comments, suggestions, and questions below.

Every Saturday afternoon, Waging WAR hits the cover of Massively with the latest and greatest in all things Warhammer Online. From patch news to career reviews, Greg Waller writes about it all. Email comments and questions to greg@massively.com.
All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Popular on Engadget