Battlefleet Gothic: Armada is the RTS videogame adaptation of Games Workshop’s classic tabletop game, pitting the Chaos, Imperium, Eldar, and Orks against each other in visceral space-battles. Additionally an extensive multiplayer mode with persistent fleets where up to 4 players can battle simultaneously, Battlefleet Gothic: Armada also features a big story campaign, taking place during the 12th Black Crusade and putting players in the middle of the Gothic War that raged between the Imperium and Abaddon the Despoiler. Players will be at the centre of every fight, commanding fleets of gigantic ships as the Chaos unleash a sequential chain of surprise attacks on Imperium worlds – the start of 20 years of warring in the sector. Developed with Unreal Engine 4, Battlefleet Gothic: Armada offers deep management of every ship composing the player’s fleet, both during and between battles. From the fastest frigates to the gigantic, miles-long battleships, the player will customize all aspects of his ships: weaponry, defense and support sub-systems, but also crew, captains, and more... each customization affecting the very performances of the ship and the special abilities available during battle. From battle to battle, the admirals and crew of surviving ships will gain experience and promotions, improving the battle-readiness of the ships for future, bigger and more dangerous battles.
The ships of Battlefleet Gothic often exceed the kilometer mark in length, and can reach up to 8 kilometers. They are strongly armored, heavily weaponised behemoths. As such, battles in space are not about dogfighting. Instead, these titans require careful maneuvering, to position your fleet in a favourable way to unleash hell on the enemy ships. These are sea battles from the ancient times of Terra, transposed in space with the technology of the 41st millennium! The ships, particularly the larger Battleships and Dreadnoughts, take time to veer, reach speed and slow down. Flanking the enemy, carefully aligning your path with that of a target to launch a salvo of torpedoes or to violently ram them, and sliding close to expose your broadside cannons and unleash a barrage of heavy fire, every action has weight and inertia... mistakes will rarely be left unpunished by your opponent.
The better your achievement on the battlefield, the higher your rank as an admiral will be, letting you order more ships to compose your fleet. While at first you will have only access to the smallest crafts, soon you will unlock the biggest, such as the Battlecruisers or the Battleships. Some factions, such as the Imperium and the Chaos, will be able to select the variant of these vessel classes, while others, such as the Orks, have access to only one per class, but are able to customize their armament.
Every ship has access to skills, tied to their equipment (such as special weapons), as well as abilities chosen for the ship when their captain level up. These special skills allow the players to tweak their fleet to suit their gameplay style. Skills may focus on support, agility, tanking, firepower or even detection, totally changing the battle approach of ships.
Crew gain experience along with the captain of their ship. When the captain levels up, you will be able to increase the efficiency of specific crew teams, such as the gunners for increased damage, navigators to avoid getting lost in the warp, launch bay technicians for faster fighter and bomber launches, among others.
Your fleets in Battlefleet Gothic are persistent: your captains and their ship's crew increase in levels, as well as yourself. Gaining ranks as an admiral allows you to field a broader variety of ships, including the biggest Battleships. When captains get new levels, it opens new skill slots for their ships to increase their performances. While destroyed ships are not entirely lost – you can either wait for repairs, or pay a hefty sum of Renown points to get an immediate replacement – battles may have medium-term effects. For example, a ship lost in the warp will remain so for multiple battles, requiring you to rely on other ships in the meantime.
139.M41; Abaddon the Despoiler, Warmaster of the Black Legion and greatest Champion of Chaos Undivided, rallies the forces of Chaos under his command and launches a chain of surprise attacks against Imperium worlds in the Gothic Sector. The 12th Black Crusade of Abaddon the Despoiler, which will soon be infamously known as the Gothic War, has just begun. The game's extensive campaign follows the events of this Gothic War. You are Admiral of a Battlegroup belonging to Battlefleet Gothic, charged with the protection of the Imperium in the Gothic Sector. Your Battlegroup is the first line of defense against the sudden and merciless offensive of the Chaos Warfleet. Do not fail the God-Emperor, and drive Abaddon and his cohort back into the Eye of Terror. The fate of Mankind lies within your hands.
The campaign of Battlefleet Gothic is dynamic, with critical missions branching to different outcomes depending on the success – or failure – of your missions. The Gothic Sector is ever-evolving, with new threats appearing and launching strikes on Imperium worlds, allies requesting help... Quite often, multiple events will arise simultaneously, requiring you to make critical decisions bearing important consequences, such as on your access to resources or available allies; and, ultimately, on the unfolding of the war itself. Destroy the enemy fleet, escort a convoy, protect a naval base from an assault, recover critical data from an enemy ship, prevent an Exterminatus or simply survive to see another day... the missions in the campaign of Battlefleet Gothic are varied and thrilling.
The Imperial fleet fields the staple of mankind's technology. Their ships are not the most powerful or the fastest, but millennia of war against countless enemies made them tough nuts to crack, with very effective void shields and strong armor. They are able to adapt in a pinch to any kind of encounter and battle situation. What target is not destroyed by their barrage of torpedo strikes – or devastating Nova cannon blasts – will be finished off by the powerful broadside armament they embark, while their thick armor and strong void shields ensure they survive the encounter.
Over the millennia, many ships and their crew have betrayed the Imperium to join the Traitor Legions. As such, a big part of the Chaos Warfleet is composed of ancient ship designs that have long since been decommissioned from service in the Imperial Navy.But make no mistake, this does not make them less fearsome. While not as heavily armoured, Chaos ships are faster than their Imperium counterparts, and out-range them with extensive use of weaponry such as Lances and attack crafts. This lets them whittle down opposition from afar, before finishing off survivors in close-encounter brawls.
Orks are not your typical space-faring species. Their ships are usually built from scrap, hulks of other ships, and in some rare cases even from asteroids. While most of their contraptions should not even work, let alone allow interstellar travel, the sheer will of the Orks, and their shared belief that it will work, actually make them work. What their ships clearly lack in reliability is made up for with sheer firepower and particularly strong prow armor. 'More Dakka' would be their motto, and charging forward, all cannons blazing and ramming the enemy ships is probably one of the most 'complex' tactic that would come to the mind of an Ork captain. And don't forget: the red ones go faster!
Fitted with the best technology has to offer, Eldar ships are fast and highly maneuverable crafts, and pack serious firepower with great damage projection and application. They are, however, lacking in the armor department – with the exception of their battleships, their craft do not embark shields, instead relying on Holo-fields in conjunction with their speed and agility to avoid incoming fire, making them extremely hard to track and hit with conventional weaponry. The Eldar is a race on the brink of extinction, their number dwindling by the day. They cannot afford losing ships - or crew - and therefore rely mainly on hit & run tactics, going in for a swift strike before quickly extracting themselves out of battle - if their target was lucky enough to have survived the brutal onslaught.