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Warhammer 40K: ‘Darktide’s Hybrid Combat Promises Melee and Ranged Combat Their Turn in the Spotlight

3 Minute Read
Jun 15 2022
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A new Dev Blog details Warhammer 40K: Darktide’s approach to Hybrid Combat. Lasguns. Thunder hammers. It’s all [the Emperor’s] gravy, baby.

Warhammer 40K: Darktide promises a visceral venture into the grim darkness of the 41st millennium. You’ll be playing in first person; but just because the guns have iron/holo sights, doesn’t mean melee weapons and characters are left to rot. In a new dev blog talking about Darktide’s Hybrid Combat, the devs show how they’re giving lasguns and chain swords equal time in the spotlight.

Warhammer 40K: Darktide – Hybrid Combat

Warhammer 40K is a tabletop game where you drive your tank closer to the enemy so you can hit them with your sword. So it’s gratifying that Fatshark is looking to capture that feeling. They want First Person Melee and Ranged.

And Darktide’s Hybrid Combat is an evolution of the foundations built in Vermintide and Vermintide 2. As the devs put it their goal was capturing:

[…] the core of Vermintide, putting it into the 40K universe, and adding ranged combat to it. Not like separate sections of classic shooting. But integrated. A mix of the two – A hybrid between meaty Melee and Classic FPS. Because 40K has never been about running around with rifles. 40K has never been swordsmen clashing shields. 40K, in its essence, is Bolter in one hand and Chainsword in the other, facing a tsunami of enemies.

They knew that they had a challenge on their hand with the expectations FPS had set.

But Darktide’s Hybrid COmbat wants to reinforce lasgun and thunder hammer. Power sword and stormbolter. But to thread that needle has been tricky. The devs outline the combat team wanting to build a proper FPS experience and then add in melee. Here’s a look at the Lasgun in action:

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We want Darktide to be a game where it’s not just four players pulling their weight in stacking enemy corpses per second but rather an intuitive shift in your behavior and who takes point. Making enemy hordes be easily dealt with by your fully automatic, flechette shooting Rippergun, while making it weak against heavily armored enemies allows other players to step up and protect you from the elites in the secure knowledge that you’ll purge the poxwalkers.

How To Mix It Up

To this end, Fatshark have a new concept: Combat Ranges. There’s a Far Combat range, based on peeking out of cover and shooting accurately. And then Close Combat is all about shotguns and submachine guns. While Melee Combat on the other hand, is all about hacking, slashing, vaulting, and then some.

Movement plays a huge part in Hybrid Combat, as do the different enemy types. Darktide’s Hybrid Combat relies on a mix of horde enemies with elite antagonists to force you to evaluate your decisions. You can read more about this in the dev blog. It’s fascinating stuff.

All this, coming in September. Get ready!

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