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Warhammer 40k’s co-op shooter Darktide returns to the land of plastic and resin in a new skirmisher

A pox on your pixels!

Promo images for Darktide: The Miniatures Game
Image credit: Games Workshop

Warhammer’s militarised science fiction and fantasy worlds have been outsourced to dozens of different video games over the past decade, resulting in both dubious stinkers but also smash hits such as Total War: Warhammer and the Vermintide series. But it’s exceedingly rare that the video games filter back to the tabletop, which makes Warhammer 40,000: Darktide’s upcoming miniatures skirmish box that much more surprising.

Announced on the Warhammer Community page on April 22nd, Darktide: The Miniatures Game transmutes the setting, plot and characters of Fatshark’s cooperative action shooter video game into a mission-based tabletop experience for up to four players as they mow down Chaos hordes and hunt traitorous holdouts within the hive city of Tertium.

If you’ve not played the video game, the premise is fairly simple: the Guardsmen of Tertium have gone rogue, and the Imperium has dispatched four very expendable, press-ganged prisoners to bring them to justice. Players take control of either the Veteran, the Zealot, the Ogryn or the Psyker and wade through hordes of enemies to accomplish the impossible.

Warhammer 40K: Kill Team - Octarius Gameplay | Guardsmen vs. Orks Watch on YouTube

Darktide: The Miniatures Game will use existing models to represent the four heroes, the corrupted soldiers now working for Chaos and the Guardsmen of the Moebian 6th Regiment on the other end - no new sculpts will be included in the base box. Rules for skirmishing have been adapted from Warhammer 40,000: Kill Team and will play out in close-quarters combat that often sees the quartet fend off both Poxwalkers and heavily armed human opponents at the same time.

The box will contain 20 total miniatures and several interlinked missions that connect into an overarching story about cleansing Tertium and turning the Imperial traitors into red streaks against the hive city’s walls. Games Workshop explicitly wants this standalone boxed game to introduce new players to the hobby without chucking them immediately into the deep end of collecting, assembling and painting a full army.

The hope seems to be that Darktide will bring over video game-only fans of Warhammer, show them how skirmish titles work and then introduce them to Kill Team and other smaller-scale miniature warfare. Several other companies have followed a similar emphasis on digestible sizes, from the new Fallout: Factions to Free League’s first foray into skirmish territory with Mutant Year Zero: Zone Wars.

Promo images for Darktide: The Miniatures Game
Image credit: Games Workshop

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