Warhammer 40K Freeblade
Warhammer 40K: Freeblade hit the Apple store not too long ago and guess what – it doesn’t suck. After a slew of below par releases based on GW properties I have to say that so far Freeblade is a lot of fun. It is however free to play and that by definition means micro transactions, but for the most part these transactions can be ignored if you play the game in shorter bursts. Check out the launch trailer below.
So What is Freeblade?
You take command of an Imperial Knight and set out to destroy all who stands in your way. The campaign offers 40 single player missions and there are Patrol and Daily missions that you can undertake. The game plays like a on rail shooter. You don’t get to control the Imperial Knight’s movement as it trudges along a set path in each encounter, but you do control the weapon and defensive systems of this glorious machine. So it kind of plays out as a movie where you get to ferociously tap the screen to lay waste to your your enemies.
The models in game are gorgeous and a very accurate reflection of the actual miniatures. Pixel Toys deserves a lot of credit for bringing the creations of 40K to life in such a detailed and accurate way. Here’s a link to the Apple store listing for all the technical requirements.
Tap to Shoot and Slay Your Enemies
Different touch commands enables you to make “weak” attacks with heavy stubbers, melta attacks etc , strong attacks with thermal and gatling cannons and use you shoulder mounted weapons. There are also close combat encounters where you need to carefully time your attack for the most impact. I found the shooting mechanics to be great fun and its quite satisfying to slaughter hundreds of Orks and Chaos marines. The melee unfortunately feels a bit flat and they should have added more options than just a timed click. (I’ve only played a few hours and I’m not sure if there any further unlocks for the melee encounters).
Customize, Forge and Upgrade
The game does have a good Knight customization feature, allowing you to choose colors and patterns, but most of these are locked behind purchases which can fortunately be made without real cash if you don’t mind grinding a bit. It also has forge and upgrade mechanic for your equipment of course also made quicker and easier with purchases.
Structural Integrity Mechanic Needs Work
My one annoyance with the game is the structural integrity mechanic which basically acts like energy in most other free to play games. As you do missions you lose integrity which kinda sets a time gate on your playing pleasure. To that end it works but as soon as you hit about 60% on your integrity your Knights’ performance also takes a quite drastic knock and suddenly you will struggle to complete newer unlocked campaign missions as your Knight won’t be able to absorb the damage it normally would. This forces you to watch some ads or spend gold to quickly repair the integrity. Once again I get it, but the below 60% penalty kind of feels as if it should only have started once you hit the 10% or 0% mark.