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Warhammer Warhammer 40,000: Battlesector - Space Marines vs Tyranids turn-based strategy

Hobo Elf

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Hobo Elf:
Finished the demo and I can say that the game felt very polished and fun to play. But it seems to be quite shallow. I noticed that your troops, other than your heroes, don't level up and there's no wargear to customize your army or heroes either. I appreciate the honesty of the demo but I think this went from a day one purchase to a wait and see for me.

Alberto [developer]:
You have different wargear & weapons that you can use. You can pick it in the Army management screen. In the same phase you can also spend points to improve your heroes, which grant new bonuses, new abilities and unlock new gear, too.

Bear in mind these are just the first two missions, there's a lot of stuff which is unlocked later during the story campaign. It is introduced gradually so that new players won't be overwhelmed by new information.

Cross posting this from the Steam forum where one of the devs answered my posts. It sounds a bit more hopeful on the depth department (though I wasn't overly thrilled by the unit upgrades being tied to your hero). Developers have been known to be a bit more enthusiastic about what their games can do versus the reality of the situation so I'm still opting to wait and see how things go.
 

Mefi

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There's no veterancy for units beyond the cosmetic little purity seals to mark completed missions. What is there is a slow (how slow depending on difficulty settings) unlocking of different weapon loadouts, skills, and buffs. But they can (for weapons it's a choice - better weapons increase points cost to deploy unit) or will (eg buffs to increase health) apply equally to a unit which has survived 19 missions as one freshly recruited. So you can split your intercessors between those with the more AP version of the bolter and those with the higher rate of fire if you want, or field 4 different types of dreadnaught, or put flamers or inferno pistols on your assault marines if you wish. And the models will reflect their weapon loadouts - down to flamer gauntlets for aggressors removing their grenade launchers.

The unit upgrades are only tied to a hero so far as the screen in HQ upgrades goes. You get the hero units, which are free to deploy 'naked' and always deploy, at the same time or before as the unit/s their HQ upgrade screen effects unlock with the exception of speeders where it's a mission later.
 
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Mefi

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Other than the obvious bugs in the tutorial, seems like demo has had a reasonable response and they're filing through the feedback on the various forums now its closed. As usual, not a single word said in criticism has not been put to them in Beta, it truly is scope and time especially for the QoL things. To be fair to them, even the most noticeable bug in the demo's tutorial just isn't present in the beta builds being tested (although five minutes with it and you can find half a dozen different ways to break it because it's been bolted on very recently). Would think post-release bug reports will be fairly extensive as people find new ways to break things but I'm not seeing any technical or major bugs any more, some tidying up to do and cosmetic stuff and some tweaking to AI behaviour is about it now.

Something which has been making me laugh a lot on the Steam forums is the complaints about the infinite spawns on the second mission in the demo. It turns off if you do the objectives (objective currently because streamers were getting confused) so if you sit in a little X-Com overwatch bubble then you will get dozens of spawns. And it only happens on hardest difficulty to put an additional pressure on the player because it's the hardest difficulty for those who want something chewier than a game tailored to the lowest common denominator. Game really does try to encourage aggressive play, hence momentum mechanic and upping crit rate - a lib dreadnaught is a monster while surging, so there are downsides to corner camping every now and again.
 

Galdred

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Steve gets a Kidney but I don't even get a tag.
Something which has been making me laugh a lot on the Steam forums is the complaints about the infinite spawns on the second mission in the demo. It turns off if you do the objectives (objective currently because streamers were getting confused) so if you sit in a little X-Com overwatch bubble then you will get dozens of spawns. And it only happens on hardest difficulty to put an additional pressure on the player because it's the hardest difficulty for those who want something chewier than a game tailored to the lowest common denominator. Game really does try to encourage aggressive play, hence momentum mechanic and upping crit rate - a lib dreadnaught is a monster while surging, so there are downsides to corner camping every now and again.

It still remains pointless and nonsensical:
Having opponents spawn infinitely while you have to complete the mission objectives makes sense, but then, having to kill all of the ones who spawned to the last one is just boring, and pointless.
I completed this mission without losing a single marine, but it took forever to clean up the 33 squads spawned., and it was not a very interesting gameplay loop.
Infinite spawn missions should end with you falling back to the rally point, or launching an orbital bombardment clearing them all (if you hold objective A for X turns), not doing some very long cleanup while the opponent stopped respawning for some reason. That doesn't even make any sense thematically: I recover all progenoid glands, so the Tyrannids stop coming, even though they could bring more reinforcements than I could clear every turn?
 

Mefi

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It still remains pointless and nonsensical:
Having opponents spawn infinitely while you have to complete the mission objectives makes sense, but then, having to kill all of the ones who spawned to the last one is just boring, and pointless.
I completed this mission without losing a single marine, but it took forever to clean up the 33 squads spawned., and it was not a very interesting gameplay loop.
Infinite spawn missions should end with you falling back to the rally point, or launching an orbital bombardment clearing them all (if you hold objective A for X turns), not doing some very long cleanup while the opponent stopped respawning for some reason. That doesn't even make any sense thematically: I recover all progenoid glands, so the Tyrannids stop coming, even though they could bring more reinforcements than I could clear every turn?

I've never had more than 8 - 12 to clean up after doing that mission. I'd imagine clearing out a few dozen is intensely tedious but the aim of that difficulty level is to challenge people who understand the mechanics of the game already rather than cater to people diving in headfirst. The ability to get Aeturo round the genesseds at a quick pace is the key to it rather than how well you dig in along a chokepoint.
 

Galdred

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Steve gets a Kidney but I don't even get a tag.
It still remains pointless and nonsensical:
Having opponents spawn infinitely while you have to complete the mission objectives makes sense, but then, having to kill all of the ones who spawned to the last one is just boring, and pointless.
I completed this mission without losing a single marine, but it took forever to clean up the 33 squads spawned., and it was not a very interesting gameplay loop.
Infinite spawn missions should end with you falling back to the rally point, or launching an orbital bombardment clearing them all (if you hold objective A for X turns), not doing some very long cleanup while the opponent stopped respawning for some reason. That doesn't even make any sense thematically: I recover all progenoid glands, so the Tyrannids stop coming, even though they could bring more reinforcements than I could clear every turn?

I've never had more than 8 - 12 to clean up after doing that mission. I'd imagine clearing out a few dozen is intensely tedious but the aim of that difficulty level is to challenge people who understand the mechanics of the game already rather than cater to people diving in headfirst. The ability to get Aeturo round the genesseds at a quick pace is the key to it rather than how well you dig in along a chokepoint.
It is the second mission, and the first one doesn't work like that at all. Whatever, I don't think that making a mission tedious should ever be considered a valid way to illustrate the need to do things in a different way.
 

Mefi

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It is the second mission, and the first one doesn't work like that at all. Whatever, I don't think that making a mission tedious should ever be considered a valid way to illustrate the need to do things in a different way.

It's the second mission of the difficulty level which tells you up front that it's aimed at experienced players of this game and serves as a reminder that missions can change from your previous campaign as much as the first demonstrates that nids have changed. Different missions can do different things even on lower difficulty levels, so you'll see that as you progress through the campaign. They generally, not always, end on 'kill all the remaining nids' though. I personally think more use of timers would probably help a bit more, but they're averse to that and want the thematic thing of nids endlessly swarming other than when a timer of some sort fits the narrative and auto-failure makes sense.
 
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Alright - finished the demo on the highest difficulty.


Gotta say that I like this a lot more than I liked Sanctus Reach, the game plays like a very polished Sanctus Reach sequel. AI is not braindead (at least on the highest difficulty), not particularly great, mind you, but it plays in a respectable fashion.


The “strategic” layer between the mission is very light, but it is there (you can select squads to deploy within the point limit of the mission, there are upgrades to unlock that give various bonuses and skills to the main character), which certainly improves the game too in my book.


The in-game movies are also done very nicely, the general atmosphere is good, certainly this seems to be one of the better 40K releases in the last few years. Honestly, I am still not convinced that the game is necessarily worth the 33 € price tag, but I will get, its not like I will take all that money to the grave…


So yeah, unlike Necromunda: Hired Gun, this game looks like it is going to deliver.
I agree, I think they have done a good job and it will sell well and make them lots of money and they create a lot of DLC and sequels and perhaps expand gameplay. Playing the game was easy but enjoyable and fun to look into the details of the units and their abilities..it was all done in a attractive way and my computer did not overheat etc..was impressed..
 

TemplarGR

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Well, it's a problem with pretty much every 40k game I've played. The fluff makes them superhuman turbocommandos high on krokodil and loss of even a single one is a tragedy, and in the games they're like +1 or +2 stats here and there compared to an average joe. The very definition of a "buffed dog, crying dog" meme.

This doesn't happen in Gladius. Space Marines are among the best infantry in the game.
 

Mefi

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FAQ they've just released on the spoiler. https://steamcommunity.com/app/1295500/discussions/0/3050607936311787066/

What platforms will Battlesector be available on?
We are going to release Warhammer 40,000: Battlesector on PC on July 22 2021. That includes Steam, Epic Games Store, GoG.com, Slitherine.com and plenty of other online stores.

We’re going to release a PlayStation 4 and Xbox One version shortly after. We don’t have a date, yet, but we’re aiming at releasing it as soon as possible after the PC launch.

What factions are available in Battlesector?
At launch, players will be able to play Blood Angels (in the single player story campaign and in skirmish, both single and multiplayer) and the Tyranids (in single player skirmish and multiplayer).

In the Blood Angels roster, Sisters of Battle detachments are also available in the story campaign, including a Sisters of Battle hero.

Do you plan on adding more factions?
The short answer: yes!

The long answer: yes. We already have plans to expand the existing roster, after launch. We’re a small team and we need to dedicate time and resources to make sure that each faction gets the attention they deserve.

It is our intention to keep expanding Battlesector, and we mean to do so by adding both more factions as well as new features.

Whoever is familiar with the work we’ve done with Battlestar Galactica Deadlock, our previous title, will know that we supported it for years, with both new paid expansions and DLCs as well as plenty of new free updates consisting of new content and features for all players.

Unfortunately, we can’t tell you which factions we mean to add first, yet.

What units are available in Battlesector?
These are the full lists of units:

Blood Angels:
  • Lieutenant (including a unique Lieutenant, Sgt/Lt. Carleon)
  • Primaris Librarian
  • Sanguinary Priest (including a unique Sanguinary Priest, Brother Aeturo)
  • Intercessor Squad
  • Inceptor Squad
  • Hellblaster Squad
  • Aggressor Squad
  • Assault Marine Squad
  • Death Company Squad
  • Techmarine
  • Furioso Dreadnought
  • Librarian Dreadnought
  • Land Speeder Typhoon
  • Baal Predator
Blood Angels can also call in air-strikes from a Stormraven Gunship.

Sisters of Battle:
  • Battle Sister Squad
  • Seraphim Squad
  • Sister Superior Verity
Tyranids:
  • Hive Tyrant
  • Tervigon
  • Tyranid Warriors
  • Tyranid Prime
  • Venomthropes
  • Trygon
  • Termagants
  • Hormagaunts
  • Genestealers
  • Exocrine
  • Thornback
  • Tyrannofex
  • Gargoyles
Tyranids can also call in air-strikes from a Harpy.


What game modes are available?
The Age of Crimson Dawn single player story campaign.

It is a twenty missions long campaign which explores the aftermath of the Devastation of Baal. Help Sergeant Carleon and his allies purge the Tyranid infestation on Baal Secundus, and preserve the honour of the noble Blood Angels.

In it, you will be carrying your units from one battle to the next, seeing your army grow as you recruit new units (you’re also able to choose the loadout of the units you recruit) or lose your battle-hardened veterans as casualties of war.

You will also be able to spend points in order to gain new army perks tied to your Heroes, and acquire new abilities, loadouts and powerful buffs.

Skirmish mode.
In Skirmish, you can play on hand-crafted scenarios of your choice and tweak the game to your liking by setting a number of parameters. You can then select the army you’d like to play, the army you’d like to face (which can be auto-generated), the number of points you’ll be playing for, and then build your army, by choosing your units and their loadouts.

How does multiplayer work? What does asynchronous multiplayer mean? What does hotseat mean?
Battlesector, being a turn-based game, allows for both live and asynchronous multiplayer. It means that you can either play against your opponent with both of you being online at the same time, or that you can make use of the PBEM (Play by e-mail) system. Through that, you’re able to play against your opponent without needing to be online at the same time.

You’ll be able to send your turn while your opponent is offline, and your opponent will be able to play theirs whenever convenient. Asynchronous / PBEM is only available on PC, not on consoles.

There is a multiplayer lobby, which means that anyone can create a challenge, either with or without password, so you can either face total strangers, or your friends.

We’re also committed to implementing the Slitherine Tournament system, which allows for official competitive tournaments. It is something we plan to implement post-launch, though. As for Hotseat, it mentions that you’re able to play against a human opponent on your same PC or console. If you’d like to play with a friend who is physically in front of you, you totally can.

What is the Photo mode?
It is a neat in-game tool that allows players to freely move their camera, capture amazing shots and then edit them to their liking, tweaking all kinds of visual parameters.

Through it you can achieve amazing results. For instance, you could go for a completely photo-realistic approach, and capture a screenshot which looks exactly like something out of a diorama. Or you could decide to depict a retro-looking romantic black-and-white sunset over Baalfora. It is an extremely versatile tool.

You can browse in game through all the shots you capture, and even flag them for them to appear as loading screens throughout the game.

Can I play with a gamepad on PC?
Sure you can! You can play with either a mouse and a keyboard, or a gamepad.

Are there achievements?
Yes, Achievements are available on Steam, GoG.com, PlayStation and Xbox.

That's the first official confirmation of release being pushed back a further week, although kind of expected from Beta build expiry date shifting too. Think the devs are currently in lockdown in Sydney so that may be part of it, although they're playing with further optimisations from those which were already in but hadn't made the demo.

edit: Black Lab Games are based in Perth, not Sydney, but same difference so far as being in lockdown right now goes.
 
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Alpharius

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How does multiplayer work? What does asynchronous multiplayer mean? What does hotseat mean?
Battlesector, being a turn-based game, allows for both live and asynchronous multiplayer. It means that you can either play against your opponent with both of you being online at the same time, or that you can make use of the PBEM (Play by e-mail) system. Through that, you’re able to play against your opponent without needing to be online at the same time.
Now thats incline compared to previous games published by Slitherine. Should be much more lively compared to the likes of Fantasy General 2, and Warhammer 40k Armageddon. One turn usually took no more than 5 minutes for me, but the opponent would often make his turn only on the next day or even next week. :argh:
I would start 10 simultaneous matches and then forget what i intended to do when i made the previous turn.
 

Mefi

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Think with terminators it's none... yet. Hints of choices between more general units and Blood Angel specific ones for immediate post-release (?) but no more than hints. Would think if you're after a roster for a 3k MP match then you'd take the BA specific units first and ask for the terminator reskin when they get round to doing a more Ultramarines-esque chapter.
 

Mefi

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Nid models and roster.




They work very similarly to Blood Angels with momentum as it's two armies with a heavy melee focus being incentivised to get in close and knock lumps out of each other. Sisters work a bit differently currently as they gain it mostly by taking damage. Can play as nids in skirmishes (vs AI) or in one of hte MP modes. I personally don't have much experience of playing them but when facing them warriors and primes can be really nasty, while I'm hopeful that the biovore won't be nerfed to the ground for release. Whether unit deletion from range will upset too many post-release... (Spoiler: taking cover matters when charging huge artillery pieces able to fire at pointblank range...).

Last beta build will be very soon and assuming no major issues then that's it til launch. Last set of major optimisations the only thing they want testing now.
 
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Glory to Ukraine
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Strap Yourselves In Codex Year of the Donut Codex+ Now Streaming!
BTW since the synaptic leadership was mentioned for the Warriors - how does the synapse network actually work in the game? I didnt really notice it in the demo, so I guess that the synapse creatures simple provide some bonuses while being out of synapse range is no big deal?
 

Mefi

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No debuff in the beta builds for being out of range but the benefits of proximity are large. Little nids get stacking +dmg when next to each other even without leadership. Some big nids give a constant synaptic leader buff, a few squares in range, which doubles momentum gains, increases accuracy and evasion. And stacks.
 

Mefi

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First review I've seen is pretty poor.

https://www.wargamer.com/warhammer-40000-battlesector/review

Playing Warhammer 40,000: Battlesector is hard work. Not because it’s challenging; quite the opposite. Its streamlined turn-based strategy does well to ease you in, and its quick-to-action linear campaign has you skirmishing with just the right level of tactical nous. Rather, playing Battlesector is hard work because squeezing saps of enjoyment from a game that does its utmost to stall, stale, and saturate itself with prolonged tedium is guaranteed to leave a bad taste in the mouth.

On standard difficulty, rarely, if ever, did I feel the need to experiment with my heroes’ buffing abilities, or reach outside of their basic attacks. Besides a couple of high-level offensive unlocks, I found myself using the same few essential actions on every turn, and the slew of passive buffs became irrelevant.

Warhammer 40,000: Battlesector is a fine game at its core, held down by tedium that overshadows the primal enjoyment of squishing rabid alien beasts with your favourite Space Marine models. Its commitment to its source material does nothing to alleviate the slog, and will more likely have you cursing the Emperor’s name than singing his praises. A missed shot.


Wish journalists wouldn't self-own so much in trying to hype or dunk on a game.

---

Explorminate are pretty much where I am with it, and the comment on stability and bugs is nice to see. To be fair, the game was super stable when it arrived in Beta and the vast majority of bug fixes have been for cosmetic things, probably still some there too.

https://explorminate.co/warhammer-40000-battlesector-review/

Apart from some minor gripes, Battlesector is fairly successful. It has a decent, if rigidly, linear campaign and engaging multiplayer or skirmish modes to add longevity. The combat feels fantastic and it’s interesting enough mechanically to set it apart from other tactics games, staying close to the tabletop rules without bogging the player down with the extra administrative overhead required of the player when playing the tabletop game. The game is also technically impressive: it runs smoothly, is virtually bug-free (likely thanks to a very extensive beta testing phase) and Black Lab has once again delivered a quality product. The game is launching boasting a quality rarely seen in either the Warhammer 40k franchise or outside of it. In this state, Battlesector is a solid addition to the tactics genre and should provide a solid platform for future content.
 
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Mefi

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Slitherine are spitting feathers at sending a review copy to a wargame specific site, which is expected to review games like WitE2 and so on, which gives a game like Battlesector, intended for a mainstream audience, to someone who plays it on normal ('Astartes' in game) and then bitches about it being too easy in the review.
 
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Mefi

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Delay was marketing decision by Slitherine apparently. Week of reviews and play throughs to get attention perhaps? It has given them chance to get a release candidate with more optimisations tested for performance and stability before going out to press. If this were a Focus game they'd have kicked it out two months ago.

edit: One other thing I think was influencing timing was Warhammer+ with its Angels of Death series headlining, which was scheduled to be starting by now and got delayed. But that's me guessing rather than it being said.
 

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