Pseudo Playable Skaven

Bigtime thanks to the UK bloggers who went to Games Day UK and have posted a ton of worthwhile info (Bootae, Bruglir, Sarigs). Unlike the U.S. version of Games Day, this time around we have been treated with some concrete details. There’s a lot to process so for this post I will stick to Skaven.

Glowing Red Eyes
Soon enough, we’ll all be able to channel our inner rat. Skaven’s introduction to WAR has been a long time coming. It’s been confirmed that you won’t be able to roll a Skaven, players will be able to transform their existing toons into a rat when the time is right.

Class? Rats Have No Class
How players will transform is unknown, but we do know there will be multiple choices at our disposal. And it sounds like there will be a distinct need for each of these:

  • The Rat Ogre will be the pounding on keep doors and steamrolling the enemy beast. If you don’t have a ram … these guys will be needed.
  • The Packmaster will be close in tow as they are the only toon capable of healing Rat Ogres. Being squishie, they should stay close to their lumbering thrall for protection.
  • Warlock Engineers are integral to keeping your siege weapons operational. They will be the only ones able to repair them.
  • And lastly, Gutter Runners will be running all over the place right under our noses and straight up walls. Stealth at all times they will move at incredible speeds sabotaging enemy siege weapons.

What is not known is what “class” we’ll be able to transform into or will it be dependent upon your archetype. In my case, would I automatically transform into the Warlock Engineer (RDPS) or could I opt to bang on keep doors as a Rat Ogre (Tank)? Will players have access to play any or be restricted to one? (I have a theory discussed below.)

Other items left outstanding are the look, gear, and power level for your Skaven. Upon first creating your rat alter-ego will we be able to select fur color, teeth, eyes, scars, etc.? Will there be gear to acquire? And most importantly, will a RR40 toon who transforms into a rat be equal in power to someone who transforms their RR80?

Rats for You … Rats for Me
No one will be left out — Order and Destruction will both be able to transform into rats and help out with the campaign. In doing so, you are limited to aiding your side. Even though Andy says the Skaven are mercenary … that doesn’t mean we’ll be able to stab allies in the back. So any thoughts you had on killing that annoying guildie under the fists of a Rat Ogre probably aren’t going to be possible.

That leads me to this … it strikes me as odd that in a few months time, Order will be aided by Skaven. Meanwhile, on the other side of the battlefield, Destro will be helped out by them as well. It all just doesn’t seem right and seems very John Smith-like from Last Man Standing.

I appreciate that Andy referenced the lore and specifically called out the Skaven’s alignment with Destruction. They took that into account but presented evidence of their true nature. For a price, they will work for anyone. What exactly would so entice them?

Solidified dark magic, warpstone in its geologic form is much coveted by the Skaven. It is believed to be the source of mutation which brought their race into being. Skaven society uses this mineral for just about everything and they are constantly seeking its power.

After reading Bootae’s Q&A with Andy Belford, it sort of solidifies my thinking around how we’ll access Skaven. I have a feeling we’ll need to farm warpstone in the Skaven zone. If you want to be a Skaven to siege keeps and take BO’s … you’ll need to accumulate warpstone in whatever zone the Skaven call their own. And in similar fashion to LOTD vessel weapons and the souls that go in them … warpstone will eventually fade and you will need to farm more. Perhaps to access each of the archetypes, you’ll need to farm that specific kind of warpstone (tank warpstone for Rat Ogres, RDPS warpstone for Warlock Engineers, etc.).

Final Thoughts
Truly some exciting news out of the UK. There are a lot of changes on the horizon and the Skaven will play a key role. The new RvR siege mechanic make their use integral. Their mechanics sound interesting and should lend fresh new gameplay for those players looking for something a bit different.

I don’t see their addition placating the myriad fans who wanted to really “play” Skaven. Those folks wanted to start at Rank 1, customize their look, level up through the game, acquire gear, and all that other good stuff. This won’t give them that. We’ll have to wait and see the reactions.

That said, I am excited for these changes and feel it will definitely spice up RvR. More Skaven talk later.

7 Responses to “Pseudo Playable Skaven”

  1. I did see something where the new skaven zone will have something to do with unlocking skaven for your character. I think it was in Bootaes interview with Andy.

  2. Hey,
    Thanks for the updates. Been out of WAR for a couple months, but with all the changes upcoming, I broke down a re-subbed last night. So keep the updates coming. Sounds like exciting things are coming down the line!

    • Depending how long you’ve been gone, the game is dramatically different than it was at launch two years ago. It’s been gradually getting better and when Patch 1.4 goes live the transformation will be complete.

      It’s a good time to come back! Welcome!

  3. I’m having a hard time warming up to the idea of Skaven vs Skaven (I know that the lore allows for racial infighting), but this just does’nt seem right in this context. They should have made it Ogre’s or Lizardmen for Order and Skaven for Destro.

    • You’re thinking what I’m thinking. I’m working on a post now that mentions this exact thing. As I said in my post … it will be odd to look around and see rats helping out Order.

  4. You know….the lizardmen angle might be something and could be a coup d’etat for Mythic. Personally, my main toon being Order, I wouldn’t mind playing Lizardmen.

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