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Total War: WARHAMMER II released for Linux, port from Feral Interactive

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Originally developed by Creative Assembly and published by SEGA, Total War: WARHAMMER II is another Linux port from Feral Interactive. Arriving on Linux a little over a year after the Windows release, it's another game to use the Vulkan API on Linux (the Windows version continues with DirectX).

This also marks Feral’s 24th Linux port (27th if counting standalone expansions).

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This is actually the second game in a planned trilogy, with Total War: WARHAMMER II offering up a new narrative campaign. If you own the first Total War: WARHAMMER, you can grab the Mortal Empires free DLC which enables you to battle across a huge combined campaign map which stitches both games together. That sounds really rather exciting!

It’s quite a popular game, with it regularly hitting well over twenty thousand people and so having it on Linux and officially supporting is a great thing.

I’ve spoken to Feral Interactive, who confirmed that sadly again the online multiplayer is only for Linux and Mac, it will not work with Windows. Hopefully in future Feral will be able to work with developers even more closely to make fully cross-platform multiplayer a thing.

As expected, it comes with the Feral launcher styled appropriately to the game. It looks good, it's functional and I personally find it quite useful. Being able to pick a screen to display the game on and resolution before you load a game is really nice.

I know some people groan about launchers, but I think when done as well as they are for Feral games, they're more useful than annoying.

Some benchmarks are up next. All done at 1080p with the NVIDIA 415.13 driver. Worth noting that while Feral's system requirements state it was tested on the 396.54 driver, they did say "or better".

Also, when maxing out the settings, the game does warn about "Shadow detail" being set to "Extreme" being likely to cause some performance problems. Not something you should really do, unless your machine is an absolute power-house. Just including that for fun to see how it levels out at the very top.

Here's some results for you:

Ubuntu 18.10 versus Windows 10 benchmarks. Done on the same hardware, both installs up to date. On the Windows 10 side, the NVIDIA 416.94 driver was used. The DirectX mode was picked as 11, since DirectX 12 support for it on Windows is only classed as a beta, so we are comparing properly released states.

In terms of performance, it seems Feral have done a really good job overall. They really know their stuff now and their work with Linux ports and the Vulkan API seems to be paying off to give us some well performing Linux games that can be enjoyed by many. Looking over Windows benchmarks other people have done, it's looking very close.

As for the gameplay and the campaigns on offer, I won't step on the toes of our contributor BTRE who will do it justice, but it certainly seems quite interesting. After going through a rather pretty intro video, the initial campaign load time on a HDD was quite long at 2-3 minutes (seems to be much faster on an SSD according to BTRE). Thankfully, loading the first battle took half the initial game loading time.

Once in, testing myself in the campaign on Ultra everything seems to be really smooth, not even the slightest hint of stutter seen. After a solid hour+ it's not given me any issues at all. Very happy with the Linux port, I'm not usually one for Total War games but even I'm quite impressed.

You can pick up a copy from Humble Store, Feral Store or head directly to Steam.

A full Linux gameplay review will be up within a week from BTRE as there was no advanced access

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raneon 20 Nov, 2018
Quoting: PatolaNow let's just hope that the incoming steam sales might let us keep spending by buying ALL THE DLCS!!!

NOTE: I have a spare 50% discount card for the game in steam, if you want it just add me on Steam (@patolinux).

I had that discount card too, I didn't remember why, but it was there, thanks for reminding me :-) So now I got the game as well!
psycho_driver 20 Nov, 2018
There's been a lot of 50% off coupons floating around for this game that expire tomorrow. I've seen a lot given away on the game's steam forum.
Liam Dawe 20 Nov, 2018
Updated to include benchmarks and other details. Pretty happy with it myself.
Mohandevir 20 Nov, 2018
Quoting: raverrebelEven if I would've wanted the game, the missing crossplay would hinder me from playing with friends.. Really hope that crossplay will be implemented for future ports (I know it's hard and sometimes impossible).

Just tell them that it's a good reason to try Linux! It's free! ...Not!

Edit: Changed ending

Last edited by Mohandevir on 21 November 2018 at 5:57 pm UTC
Patola 20 Nov, 2018
First day, first bug report! Let's see how long to have these problems solved. ^_^
mirv 21 Nov, 2018
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Well after a failed start because steam (not this game, but steam itself) decided to wipe itself out, hard lock my system, and only played nice with a completely fresh install of it and rolling back mesa a bit (my opinion of the quality of software from Valve is not high), I'm pleased to say that this game runs quite well for me. Average of 30fps, but I'm still tinkering with graphical settings (I'm happy with 25fps, so more fancy stuff can be enabled yet). I should also use performance cpu governor instead of my stock standard ondemand. But, even so, the game is more than playable right now.
So that's cool.
SuperTux 21 Nov, 2018
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Downloading now, although going to have to go through my hard drive as I am getting kinda low on space on a 4TB drive lol
slapin 21 Nov, 2018
Is there single player in this game?
SuperTux 21 Nov, 2018
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Quoting: slapinIs there single player in this game?

Yes, plenty of single player and campaigns to keep you going

Be careful installing, when I first installed Steam decided it was a Windows game and installed as such. Restarting Steam fixed this.
neutrinosteak 21 Nov, 2018
QuoteI’ve spoken to Feral Interactive, who confirmed that sadly again the online multiplayer is only for Linux and Mac, it will not work with Windows. Hopefully in future Feral will be able to work with developers even more closely to make fully cross-platform multiplayer a thing.

I'm very disappointed in this port. I've played a decent amount of both Total War Warhammer 1 and 2 on Windows, and I have been looking forward to playing this on Linux for many months. The fact that it's not cross platform is a deal-breaker for me. A massive portion of the gameplay involves playing with others online, and if you're restricted to playing with just Linux players or the paltry mac community, It already takes a while to get a multiplayer game on Windows filled up, and with Linux being as small of a market as it is I foresee this being a huge problem.
Given that Feral was originally planning this port for "early autumn" and it's just coming out now, they've had plenty of time to work on the game and with all the experienced developers they have I don't see how they can't manage to fit cross-platform play into their products. There are plenty of big games (Rocket League, Stellaris, Dota2, Borderlands 2, RUST, etc) that work cross-platform, and while the single-player for TW:WH2 is good, the vast majority of replayability for me is online multiplayer/campaigns. I don't think I will be purchasing another Feral game until they confirm it will be cross-platform.
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