Although the Diablo 3 add-on Reaper of Souls was released a good five years back, hardly any studios apart from free-to-play titles seem to want to challenge Blizzard in one of its special areas. Interesting alternatives arise nonetheless, like Warhammer: Chaosbane.
No matter whether an action role-playing game with an isometric view and a lot of loot has a fantasy setting, is located in the future or pursues a more down-to-earth scenario: It will inevitably always come to a comparison with Diablo.
No matter whether an action role-playing game with an isometric view and a lot of loot has a fantasy setting, is located in the future or pursues a more down-to-earth scenario: It will inevitably always come to a comparison with Diablo. Blizzard has not only single-handedly stomped the genre out of the ground with its three titles and numerous add-ons, but has also dominated it almost at will. Of course, competition always existed with titles including Sacred, Evil Islands, Dungeon Siege, Titan Quest, Victor Vran, Path of Exile, The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing or Grim Dawn, as well as projects in development like Wolcen and Co. In addition, Games Workshop, one of the big licensors got involved in the fight when Neocore Warhammer released 40K Inquisitor - Martyr last year. The result was ambitious and worth playing, but couldn't shake up the supremacy of Diablo 3.
Warhammer: Chaosbane, produced by Eko Studios for Big Ben Interactive, serves the fantasy universe of the British tabletop specialists, which is much closer to the Diablo series. And as one of the developers revealed, they obviously look at what Diablo did well and attempt to improve on it, adding new facets to the genre. The background setting which inevitably draws its origins from Warhammer but nevertheless reveals similarities to Diablo 3, sooner or later makes it impossible to avoid comparisons with the hunt for Belial, Azmoden and the like. The battles, which one has to fight against a higher amount of opponents attacking at the same time than in D3, will fill the ground with corpses, gold and loot quickly. And like most action role-playing games, Warhammer: Chaosbane lives by these elements.
Warhammer: Chaosbane attempts to challenge Diablo 3 in a duel. While some points of the new game might be inferior, the developers also try to pass by Blizzard's devil hunt with some good ideas. Of course, you can't ignore the story, which has been significantly influenced by Games Workshop and whose dialogues don't allow any choices - but they are slightly different depending on the main character chosen from the four archetypes. Chasobane, furthermore, delivers a good character development, game mechanics and user guidance. No matter if you decide to go for the human knight, the high elf magician, the forest elf archer or the dwarf with his axes, the controls feel pleasantly direct and offer an interesting variant of the usual combat system. The Knight, for example, can activate a magical shield attack with a cooling timer in a 360-degree radius that throws back enemies. Dwarf and Wood Fairy can use movement modifiers and the magician has the ability to actively control some of his spells instead of just firing a fireball in a forward direction.
Warhammer: Chaosbane can be tackled alone or with up to four players cooperatively in any class or an on/offline combination. Since everyone shares the same loot and everything can be collected by everyone, class specific items are likely to end up in the backpack of the respective character. There is no online constraint, so in case of doubt, you can concentrate on the coop or the solo game. In any case, players seem to be prepared for the time after the end of the story. The Boss-Rush, which stretches over ten levels of difficulty, and above all the relic hunt, which takes place on maps changed with random parameters, should provide the basic motivation to hunt for armour sets in the long run, available in four levels of quality and rarity.
If you can't wait to play the game, you can find the cheapest price for Warhammer: Chaosbane in our price comparison.