Creative Assembly have announced the update and support strategy for their latest Total War, and, like the city it's based on, revealed that Rome II won't be patched in a day. The developers plan to release fixes for the game "on a weekly basis in the immediate future", targeting their updates based on player feedback, as they configure and tune the release post-launch.
War. War never changes. Unless it's on a ship, then it changes quite a lot, what with all the water and scurvy and stingrays to worry about. In its latest trailer, Total War: Rome II gives us a glimpse of its frankly gorgeous naval combat and, blimey, I'm getting seasick just looking at it. The whole business looks appropriately chaotic and cramped, though not as many people fall in the sea as I would have thought. It's the first thing I would have done if I'd have been there.
Evan and T.J. recently sat down with Creative Assembly's Al Bickham for a guided tour through the battlefields of the 4th century B.C. in Total War: Rome II. We explore the campaign map with its new mechanics, and jump into a real-time battle to defend a key road to Rome. All the while, we bombard our gracious host with questions about the new face of Total War.
Rome wasn't built in a day, as slow people are fond of saying - no it took, like, at least a week. Creative Assembly seem to be taking even longer with Total War: Rome 2, their latest enormo-strategy title which is set - if my history is correct - in the late 1970s. To make the wait more bearable, the devs have started their own Let's Play series, this latest entry showing off the game's campaign mode. It's a pleasantly in-depth video, detailing the different starting choices and factions, before- cor, look at that gorgeous world map.
Total War: Rome II footage shows orchestral soundtrack and bashing-things-with-hammers sound effects
A dev diary video released by Creative Assembly shows great behind-the-scenes footage of the sound design in the new Total War strategy game, Rome II The Total War series has always had an emphasis on bigger worlds and more units on a battlefield at once, but it’s neat to see the lengths they went to get really great sound.
Creative Assembly's Al Bickham and Joey Williams gather up their elephants in an attempt to show you how to tackle Total War: Rome II's historical Battle of the Nile scenario. Watch on to learn how best to organise your units into a suicidal charge up a heavily defended hill. Or, if you're me, how to then wait patiently and subtly alter plans without resorting to ramping up the unit speed and letting the whole thing descend into slapstick chaos.
The Roman general Thrifticus once famously said that if you can lead an army to war for $15 less than the current advertised price on Steam, you would be a fool not to take advantage. Really, look it up. What do you mean "The Romans didn't use dollars?" Stop asking so many questions, jeez. Bottom line: You can pre-order a Steam copy of Rome II on StackSocial for $45. The historical accuracy of the preceding claims has no bearing on the deal.
In the latest trailer for Total War: Rome 2, Cleopatra looks back on all her great and/or terrible deeds, including the relatives she's had murdered, the Carry On films she's inspired, and the late 90s girlbands she's directly responsible for. Those last two reflections may or may not be in the following video - but you won't know for sure until after the break.
Because fighting AI just isn't the same as taking a sword to the face of a good friend, you know? Empire: Total War has opened its multiplayer campaign beta to testers again after a long three years—here's your chance to get back in on the action.
Just when we thought we were finished with Creative Assembly's slow (and often predictable) reveal of Total War: Rome 2's playable factions, they come back for an encore. Ex-Persian state Pontus joins the roster as the ninth potential power - and will be added to the game through a free day-one update, published through Steam when the game releases later this year.
There's a lot of stuff happening in this 10+ minute narrated walkthrough of Total War: Rome II's Battle of Teutoburg Forest event. By "stuff" I mean killing, stabbing, shooting, flanking, charging, lancing, burning and warhounding. Those Germanic forces aren't messing around, and here you get to see Creative Assembly attempt to survive the assault.
Creative Assembly continue to announce Rome 2's playable factions. Today's reveal heralds the Suebi as the sixth of the game's eight factions, meaning we're only a few weeks away from the full roster. "The Suebi are an indomitable Germanic culture dwelling to the north east of Gaul. Not a single people, but rather numerous tribes sharing a common language and similar religious beliefs," says the wiki page. From the look of the above screenshot, they also make passing wolves rather nervous.
Total War: Shogun 2's add-on release schedule has shown a remarkable dedication to historical accuracy. First there was the Rise of the Samurai, then, inevitably, the Fall of the Samurai. Now comes the Bundle of the Samurai, giving you the chance to get a 2-for-1 deal on Samurai with Total War: Shogun 2 Gold Edition.
The latest update to the Mythos Edition of the marvellous Darthmod project for Napoleon: Total War has landed according to ModDB, which makes this a good excuse to highlight Darthmod for any Total War players who haven't considered modding the game at all just yet.
The infamously challenging has gradually added more and more units to Napoleon, and has tuned the AI to be more aggressive and tougher to beat. Installing it will add 191 new land units, 14 new naval units and extra visual effects that make Napoleon's battlefields smokier, bloodier and more explosive. The mod also increases unit sizes and includes a campaign that supports 40 unit armies. The AI has been overhauled to use its generals more carefully, and combat has been rebalanced to make melee more decisive.
I don't know if you noticed, but yesterday Total War: Rome 2 was announced, and we all got rather excited. Today we've got an announcement trailer for you. It's live action (unless Rome's engine is even better than we expected) but it should get you in the mood for murder, betrayal and politics, all of which seem to be one and the same for the Romans. "What would you do for Rome?" It asks. Personally I would pay slightly above average air fare, how about you?
While seeing Rome 2 for the first time at Creative Assembly, I spoke to lead designer James Russell and lead battle designer Jamie Ferguson about the new direction that Total War is taking, their ambitions for the game, and why they're returning to Rome after all this time. Click through for the videos.
The Creative Assembly's TW Craig posted on the Total War forums earlier with news of an upcoming event that will give modders a chance to meet the designers and programmers behind their favourite strategy series.
"We'd like to hold a modding summit here at The Creative Assembly at the end of July. Maybe we'll hire a venue somewhere," writes TW Craig. "The main thing is we can have these conversations with you ourselves, explain why limitations are in place if they exist, and help if there's any way we can."
After a controversial launch, Empire has gone on to become one of the sleeper hits of the Total War series. A few weeks before the standalone Total War: Shogun 2 expansion, Fall of the Samurai was released, we asked Creative Assembly studio director, Mike Simpson about Empire's strange journey. "It’s weird isn’t it?" he said. "It does keep going – that’s one thing about Empire, it’s still selling now as much as it was a year ago and that just doesn’t stop."
Empire was to be The Creative Assembly's most sprawling, ambitious Total War yet, but its release in 2009 was overshadowed by AI bugs. Passive enemies and weak AI frustrated Total War players. Simpson admits that The Creative Assembly "did take on a little bit more than we were actually capable of delivering by the date."
Set 300 years after Shogun 2, Fall of the Samurai is a standalone expansion covering the events of the 1868 Boshin War in Japan. The negotiation of unfair trade agreements with western powers has led to growing resentment towards the ruling Tokugawa Shogunate at home. A group of southern factions has rallied around the Emperor and mobilise against the Shogun. As commander of one of the six leading factions of the time, you must pick a side and ultimately decide whether Japan will embrace the might of the west’s new technology, or stay true to the way of the Samurai.
That requires conquering as much of Japan as possible using the tried and tested Total War formula. You build towns, move armies, negotiate and trade on the turn-based grand strategy map, which has been expanded to include the northern provinces that historically become the last safe haven for the Shogun’s forces. When armies and fleets meet, you have the option to dive into gorgeous real-time battles to command your troops personally.