Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader's release date is an appealing invitation in a post-Baldur's Gate 3 world

RPG fans out there are really getting their fill this year, and it looks like 2023 might be going out with a bang. The release date trailer for Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader has just dropped, and—barring any unexpected delays—we'll be getting our hands on Owlcat Games' latest RPG on December 7.

With the huge success of Baldur's Gate 3 (an RPG with turn-based combat, based on one of the most popular tabletop roleplaying games in the world), Rogue Trader (an RPG with turn-based combat, based on one of the most popular wargames in the world) might grab the attention of a few more people than it would have if released earlier.

Speaking with Polygon, Alexander Mishulin, creative director at Owlcat, pointed out that "Baldur’s Gate 3’s success is very encouraging" and that Larian is "renewing a lot of passion" for RPGs. With the undeniable impact of other RPGs as well this year like Starfield and Diablo 4, Rogue Trader is in a good position to reach further than just the current Warhammer fanbase.

Creating a devastatingly powerful group of deviants and engaging them in tactical combat is just the "in" thing right now, and I'm here for it. Though the sheer depth of lore and history that Warhammer has is daunting, I see this as a great opportunity to dive further into the 40,000 universe without being too intimidated or overwhelmed.

Owlcat Games' RPG experience with Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous and its predecessor, combined with the huge amount of Warhammer 40,000 lore available, provides the foundation here for something really exciting, but the 'rogue' aspect of Rogue Trader is what's really grabbed my attention. Creating a mixed group with a space marine, a tech priest, and many other options, isn't only just really fun, but also provides a new opportunity for the Warhammer 40,000 purist players to break free from the strict rules of the table. And just being able to, as PC Gamer's own Rick Lane described it, "wield the full 40k arsenal, from bolters and flamers to chainswords and thunder hammers" is enough to get me jumping at my desk in preparation for the skull smashing.