SEGA and Creative Assembly today pushed out a release date for Total War: Warhammer. That's great — even if it's not coming out until next year.
But what's more annoying is the news they paired alongside it: the Chaos Warriors. If you want them, you'll either have to pre-order or pay afterwards. And not just one or two warriors, but the whole faction.
Around six months, two weeks and six days: that's how long we have until April 28 next year, which is when Total War: Warhammer is coming out. But more irksome than that was the news that came with it, the fact that the entirety of the Chaos Warriors have been gated off as paid DLC.
You can get the race for free now if you pre-order, but that's the last thing you should probably do: pre-orders have been shown, time and time again, to be poor value for gamers. And given that Creative Assembly's record has been like a yoyo the last few years — Alien: Isolation was fantastic, Total War: ATTILA not so much — it makes sense to see proof of quality before jumping in.
It's not just missing out on a playable faction: the Chaos Warriors have quest chains of their own, and the DLC page says the entire race is "playable in the Grand Campaign and multiplayer matches; as well as adding entirely new Legendary Lords, Lords, Heroes, Units, Magic Items and more". Except it's being gated behind as DLC, and there's no information on how much it might cost post-launch (although some kind of cataclysmic event would have to occur for Creative Assembly to permanently gate off a whole race only for pre-orders).
Let's just put this into context: the Chaos race is one of the mainstays of the Warhammer universe, and six months ahead of release it's already been carved up for profit. Call me old-fashioned, but outlining DLC like that so far ahead of a launch isn't far from impressive. And if the debacle around Evolve's over-eager DLC plans were any lesson, it doesn't sit well with most gamers either.
Update: The Orcs and Goblins are a single race in Total War: Warhammer, rather than two separate factions; I've updated the text above to reflect that (and you can see the dialogue in the comments below). Thanks everyone.