Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Warhammer 40,000 Progenitor Helming New Tabletop Wargame

Yes, it’s another Kickstarter report but this one is important and looks like it might have a lot of promise behind it. 
Why? Because it’s got several people core to the success of Games Workshop’s megalith of modern tabletop gaming involved. Not only is Bob Naismith, the guy who designed the original space marines involved, the lead person behind this project is Rick Priestly, creator of both incarnations of Warhammer. In addition to this two of those on-board as artists are winners of Golden Demon Slayer Swords. Oh and the people backing them get to have direct input to what they’re creating.

This is the talent, experience and creative skill of people who know and have proven what they are doing combined with a willingness to listen to their target audience. The sort of thing Games Workshop used to be prior to deciding things like Kaldor Draigo were products of genius and thinking criticisms of their books were actually suggestions for future editions.
So what are they working on? What they claim is going to be the world’s first real-time dynamic gaming universe: Beyond the Gates of Antares.

Unlike Warhammer or a number of other tabletop games, the idea behind BTGOA is for it to be continuously moving forwards. For new developments to rapidly take place and both the timeline and setting to evolve rather than be slaved to a status quo. However unlike the likes of Battletech, this is going to take place and real-time with every development decided by those playing it. The team behind this explain this better than I ever could:

We are inviting players to register to take part in our extensive series of online campaigns and adventures - we call them 'episodes'. 

We'll be creating lots of episodes and they will vary from huge star-spanning military campaigns that last for many months and potentially years, to raids and surgical strikes that start and finish in a day. 

It's all real-time remember!  

Feed us the results of your battles (through our website or smartphone App) and we'll use your data to determine which of the game's factions wins control of each of the different fighting zones, and ultimately which faction is victorious in that particular episode.

Effectively it’s going to be for tabletop gaming what Planetside 2 is for mass online shooters, but with far more potential for a continuously shifting setting. In addition to this the pitch seems to be very honest thus far, with mentions of most of the ideas being in Priestley’s head and the potential for periods of imbalance between factions with this progression system by some factions. Such as certain ones getting new weapons ahead of others. Rather than being a sign of concern however, it suggests that the team behind this, Dark Space Corp, are aware of their own faults and willing to acknowledge them. Unlike another monolithic company which these days seems to try and pretend any problems they have do not exist.

Admittedly as of yet we know few details about the actual game itself. The system will revolve around D10s and D100s with statistics apparently having the potential to adapt to different methods of play, but exactly how it will be played and what “combat status” refers to has yet to be detailed. A little more is known about the universe’s background and fluff but only bare bones details.

Still even with this it’s a great opportunity for something fantastic and a chance for something very different and new to be presented to the playing community. With 57 days to go and little over 10% of its goal achieved the project needs some serious backing, as such I suggest everyone reading this to go to their page here and look at what they are trying to create. Is it promising a lot? Definitely, but there’s good signs that it has the potential to deliver and is in very good hands.

Further details can be found here on their Facebook page and main website.

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