In Total War: Warhammer the entire Old World can be found on the campaign map. This is the biggest and the most important continent in this universe and may bear some resemblance to Europe. A player can conquer this land by using one of the five in-game factions:
- Empire - a strong faction of men (similar to the Habsburg dynasty from XVI century)
- Dwarfs - honorable warriors living in the strongholds in the mountains.
- Greenskins - wild groups of orcs, goblins and similar races from the wastelands
- Vampire Counts - The undead led by the necromancers
- Chaos - destructive and demonic forces [available via the pre-order or after buying a DLC]
Apart from that, the campaign map is filled with neutral factions controlled by the AI (some of the factions will be playable after other DLCs are published). Also, each of the factions (except for Chaos) is divided into smaller, individual groups. This means, that upon starting the game, the player starts the campaign having only one province. Thus, the first tours are spent on creating and maintaining the right relationships with the 'relatives'. The map below shows the starting position and the political situation in the Old World.
The main mechanics of the gameplay are mostly the same as they were in the other Total War games. However, two basic differences can be found:
There is no total conquer anymore - A limit has been imposed concerning the areas that one can conquer, in order to make the gameplay more interesting and difficult, but also to avoid some potential story plotholes. For example, greenskins cannot conquer anything beyond the mountains and wastelands on the south of the Old World (they can still plunder them however).
Winds of Magic - Magic is common in any type of fantasy and so it is present in Warhammer. Here, sorcerers and spells exist but their effectiveness varies depending on the location. If the Winds are strong in a particular area (depicted as colorful waves of energy hovering over the ground), casting spells can be easier and vice versa. It is advised to keep an eye on it before attacking an enemy.
Legendary Lords fighting side by side.
It is important to mention the types of characters that play the crucial role in the campaign map.
Legendary lords - Faction leaders. Before starting a campaign, a player has to choose a character that will stand in the charge of the kingdom. All of the Legendary Lords differ between each other with their special abilities, artefacts that they can obtain during the missions and also with their goals required to win the campaign. They are also immortal, even if they are killed they are resurrected couple of tours later.
Lords - They are leading the armies to battle (Generals), lead the fleets (Admirals) and maintaining the provinces (Overseers). Each of the lords has different abilities which help him in taking active part in the battle and giving particular bonuses on the territories they maintain.
Heroes - They move on the map by themselves sabotaging and assassinating other heroes. They can also calm down the riots in the provinces and discover unraveled parts of the Old World. They can also be added to army in order to get more help from their abilities during the fight.