Total War: Rome II reveals ninth faction as free day-one DLC

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.

Once again, the Total War Wiki details the faction's philosophy: "Its prized commodities, and the opportunism of its well-informed rulers, have enabled Pontus to remain one of the strongest Hellenistic states in existence. With connections throughout the ancient world, largely due to control of Black Sea trade and exports of timber, precious metals and valuable steel, Pontic agents are perfectly placed to gather information on their enemies abroad."

They also look rather fetching on horseback, as you can see on the screenshot above.

While Pontus joins Rome, Cathage, Macedon, Iceni, Arverni, Suebi, Parthia and Egypt as Rome 2's playable factions, the campaign map will contain a much broader range of allies and enemies. According to a recent GDC talk, the game will feature over 100 total factions . Hopefully Creative Assembly aren't planning week-by-week wiki updates for each one of them.

Phil Savage

Phil has been writing for PC Gamer for nearly a decade, starting out as a freelance writer covering everything from free games to MMOs. He eventually joined full-time as a news writer, before moving to the magazine to review immersive sims, RPGs and Hitman games. Now he leads PC Gamer's UK team, but still sometimes finds the time to write about his ongoing obsessions with Destiny 2, GTA Online and Apex Legends. When he's not levelling up battle passes, he's checking out the latest tactics game or dipping back into Guild Wars 2. He's largely responsible for the whole Tub Geralt thing, but still isn't sorry.