Review – Warhammer: Chaosbane Slayer Edition

I’ll admit that I have never, not once, played a Warhammer video game before starting Warhammer: Chaosbane Slayer Edition. However, I used to frequent Games Workshop’s, miniatures and dice in hand, ready for a friendly game. I believe that I still have some Ogre Kingdoms and Tomb Kings throughout my home, somewhere.

I mean, it IS the Slayer Edition, right? Kinda have to.

Warhammer: Chaosbane originally dropped in 2019. The Slayer Edition brings a nice set of Series X and PS5 enhancements to it as well being bundled with all of its post launch content. You play as either an Empire soldier, High Elf mage, Wood Elf scout, or your choice of Dwarf Slayer or Engineer. The Slayer Edition also lets you pick the newly added Witch Hunter. Throughout its three main acts, you play out the story and are introduced to many familiar names from the tabletop games universe. Let me be clear that those three acts are beefy. There is a ton of content to play through.

Long story short, in every imaginable way, this is a Diablo-clone; an isometric loot slasher. After choosing your character, you are given quests throughout its multiple chapters, to battle against the demonic hordes and their allies. Early on, this meant a lot of running from point A to point B, back to A then to point C, back to A again then to point D. Once again, running back to A before heading off again.

You will absolutely get your steps in for the day.

For me, personally, I began my journey as the edition demanded; as a Slayer. Those lovable red headed scamps that are hell bent on their own murder assisted suicide. Live to die! You begin with your health and magic meters and the smallest of ability and ability slots, the number of abilities you can have at any one time. As you level, you get more of each until you are slaying, throwing, jumping, yelling, and spinning your way through hordes of enemies.

Hacking your way through those hordes results in the possibility for loot to drop, as does opening chests. Weapons, armor, shields, rings, gauntlets, headgear, boots, they all come in degrees of rarity and their bonuses represent as much. You increase the level, you increase the loot quality, so you can increase the level again, so you can increase the loot quality again.

Doing this alone can get about as boring as it sounds above. By X hour and my Y-teenth mission, I was playing on auto-slay. Holding down my attack as groups of enemies bounce off me, occasionally moving position to get to ranged attackers, mostly keeping an eye on my health and ignoring most anything else. Thankfully, you can play with a group of friends, locally or online.

Chaosbane Slayer Edition

I know someone down there is suffering, but please, a quick word.

But I digress. You get this. It’s Diablo, it’s Warhammer, it’s a 2019 game. I don’t want to rehash Thomas’ fantastic review of Warhammer: Chaosbane, so how is the Slayer Edition? Visually on the Xbox Series X, and I am sure PS5; wow! After playing this, I couldn’t believe that the game ever looked like how it launched on consoles in 2019. A definite improvement over the original and now on par with what high end PC players were seeing.

Content wise; you get pretty much all of the DLC that has come out, both free and paid. This includes the two additional post campaign modes, Tower of Chaos and Invasion, as well as an entirely new campaign story dealing with the Tomb Kings. Being a personal favorite, the Tomb King story campaign alone was the reason for my admission. And, alas, let’s all welcome Jurgen Haider to the ranks, Witch Hunter extraordinaire. He quickly became a fan favorite.

Lastly, an additional God Tier allows for deeper late game customization and development. You can level your characters higher and unlock even more passive and active abilities. But much like our original take in 2019, most people will never play the game this long.

Chaosbane Slayer Edition

Couldn’t add the Witch Hunter, huh?

With all the visual enhancements to the game, and all the content bundled into it, Warhammer: Chaosbane Slayer Edition falls prey to one major failing: playing it makes me wish I were playing Diablo III instead. It follows Diablo’s blueprint a little too much, without ever raising the bar. If you are a fan of Warhammer’s fantasy universe, then there is a lot to enjoy. If you just need more isometric loot slashers in your life, then you can’t go wrong. But even with that, I just kept thinking, “I could be playing Diablo right now.”

 

Graphics: 8.0

Absolutely an improvement over its 2019 predecessor and more on par with what high-end PC gamers have been seeing.

Gameplay: 8.5

Combat remains its core thanks to its unique skill system. And flowing at 60fps is buttery smooth when facing the largest hordes.

Sound: 7.0

Voice acting remains awful but in the best of ways. Ambient sound is fantastic even if instrumentals remain good yet ultimately forgettable.

Fun Factor: 7.5

Although this is no Diablo, it is a worthy alternative to anyone who has exhausted their stay in Sanctuary.

Final Verdict: 8.0

Warhammer: Chaosbane Slayer Edition is available now on PC, PS5, Xbox Series X/S

Reviewed on Xbox Series X.

A copy of Warhammer: Chaosbane Slayer Edition was provided by the publisher.