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Horror Lurks Beneath the Western Front in Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics on Xbox One

I’m excited to be here to share news of our upcoming turn-based strategy game, Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics. In partnership with publisher Ripstone, we are bringing tactical WWII combat to Xbox One later this year and you can get a sneak preview of what to expect in the brand-new announcement trailer above.

We’re pretty familiar with the Second World War and the huge struggle for freedom pitting the Allied powers against the Axis forces. It’s an archetypal struggle of good vs evil that is rightly celebrated in life and fiction for the heroism and sacrifice that so many made.

However, some reading this may be less familiar with the fact that some members of the Nazi forces were pretty obsessed with the occult, sending missions around the globe to seek forbidden knowledge. They didn’t find much but in Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics we face the terrifying reality that there was, in fact, something in the darkness that answered the fascist call, and suddenly the Nazis are no longer the darkest foe you face…

Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics Screenshot

Welcome to the Secret War, as told in Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics, our new turn-based strategy game with RPG elements, where an unholy alliance of the Nazi’s and supernatural powers are locked in mortal combat with a small band of Allied forces who are charged with using covert warfare to stop them at any cost. Based on the Achtung! Cthulhu universe, a multiple award-winning tabletop RPG from Modiphius, the new title echoes Churchill’s stirring instructions to the allied covert forces to infiltrate Nazi-occupied countries and “..go and set Europe ablaze!”

Let’s break the title of the game down, as it helps to show where we’re drawing our influences from.

Achtung!” is a command you’d hear shouted in pulp WWII tales of yesteryear — it’s German for “Attention!” and echoes those classic pulp films, stories, and comics.

Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics Screenshot

“Cthulhu” is the name of an elder god of immense power who lies dreaming, deep under the ocean in his sunken city. He’s one of a number of alien gods that seek to claim the Earth and bring it back under their yoke when the end times arrive, originally created back in 1926 by cult weird fiction writer H.P. Lovecraft. Lovecraft’s mythos has grown since then. Cthulhu’s minions are working with the Nazi’s to make just such a scenario a terrible reality.

Finally, we have “Tactics” as this is both a tactical and strategic game, with RPG character development. To smash the forces of darkness you must use wit, guile, and weapons in conjunction with each other. Our base gameplay draws inspiration from titles such as Massive Chalice and XCOM, but the Mythos and WWII twist takes you down into a new darkness and a different challenge.

What, you might ask, are these twists? Well, there are quite a few things, but core to the game is a system we call “The Shroud” and it is a gameplay version of the overall themes of Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics: good vs evil, light vs dark.

Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics Screenshot

Enemy activities have cloaked the battlefield in an effect agents have dubbed The Shroud, where enemies gain bonuses from being within its shadows. However, the boffins at AlliedHQ have also been working with some strange archaeological finds, replicating a protective amulet that pierces The Shroud within its proximity. So, when the enemy is within your vision range, your amulet-equipped agents get bonuses for hammering the enemy by bullet and blade. By contrast, the enemy seeks to live in the dark and strike from the shadows and get attack bonuses when they do. A skilled commander can use their combined effects to their tactical advantage.

We’ve also got a cool system called Momentum which is a resource that is built up by your success in combat. It can then be spent on special skills, attacks, and your own arsenal of supernatural powers. It’s another layer of tactical options that allow you to really show the Nazi and the beast what stirling stuff your crew is made of!

Of course, there is a lot more to say about the game. To give us space to say it we’re working on a podcast which explains how we are creating Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics, our inspirations and what you can expect from the finished game, which you can subscribe to here.

I hope to see you at the next mission briefing! I’m off to load my rifle and sharpen my commando knife ready for battle…