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Total War: Elysium is a card game spin-off launching in China first

(Image credit: NetEase)

Earlier in the year, Creative Assembly said that China was the biggest market for Total War: Three Kingdoms, and the studio has followed up that surge in popularity  by teaming up with Chinese publisher NetEase. The partnership means NetEase will be bringing all of the historical Total Wars to China, along with a brand new game. 

Creative Assembly will be working with NetEase to comply with China's very strict requirements, but in the FAQ the studio says it won't affect players outside of China. This became an issue for Ubisoft last year when Rainbow Six Siege's maps and art were changed before it launched in China, affecting all players. It didn't go down well and the decision was quickly walked back. 

The new game will also be exclusive to China, at least for now. Total War: Elysium is a CCG featuring, judging by the art above, historical generals duking it out on the table. Though it's launching in China first, Creative Assembly says it hopes to "bring it to players worldwide before too long".  

Elysium is Creative Assembly's first CCG and the studio reckons releasing in a huge market like China with a publisher experienced in the genre gives it the best chance for success. Hopefully by the time we get it, some of the kinks will have been worked out. 

Also teased was the surprise resurrection of Total War: Arena, against exclusive to China. Creative Assembly and Wargaming canned the multiplayer RTS last year, following a long testing period and diminishing interest. It was a neat concept, with players each commanding part of an army rather than the whole, but didn't find its audience. At least not in the west. That doesn't mean it won't make a return one of these days. 

Fraser Brown

Fraser is the UK online editor and has actually met The Internet in person. With over a decade of experience, he's been around the block a few times, serving as a freelancer, news editor and prolific reviewer. Strategy games have been a 30-year-long obsession, from tiny RTSs to sprawling political sims, and he never turns down the chance to rave about Total War or Crusader Kings. He's also been known to set up shop in the latest MMO and likes to wind down with an endlessly deep, systemic RPG. These days, when he's not editing, he can usually be found writing features that are 1,000 words too long. He thinks labradoodles are the best dogs but doesn't get to write about them much.