Real Space Marines don’t use cover systems

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Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine was given its first official preview yesterday, and you’ll notice that the game doesn’t have a cover system, despite being influenced by popular cover-based shooter Gears of War. According to Relic, cover systems don’t make you feel like a badass Space Marine, and I wanted to know why the team thought that was the case.

“One of the big things was we’re all huge Warhammer 40,000 fans,” explains producer Andy Lang, “and a Space Marine is not based on a modern day military soldier, it’s more based on a medieval knight, and knights were about entering battle and having a presence to intimidate an enemy. Having a Space Marine duck behind cover goes against that fiction.

“So when we put it in, it just didn’t feel right, especially with the way the armor’s been designed and the way he looks, so we thought we’d push that back and focus on the melee combat a little harder, and see if we can get the marriage between shooting and close combat working. At first we worried that it was really complicated to merge two different control schemes but once we got a prototype working, we were like, this is Space Marine.”

The game certainly looks good, and the lack of cover makes for faster combat with a good sense of pacing and flow. I like cover-based shooters, but they can get pretty dull. Hopefully, stamping on Ork heads and charging into battle with a Bolter in hand ought to feel as delicious as it should.


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