Feedback after 107 hours of gameplay

Mirrored from my steam discussions post - Feedback after 107 hours of gameplay :: Warhammer 40,000: Darktide The Mourningstar - General Discussions

Yeah before you say anything, I’m not going to deny that it’s kinda sad. Had nothing better to do and a lot of hype.
I would post this as a review but I dont really want to review the game before it’s fully released. So here’s some basics, I’m happy to discuss opinions in the comments but I dont care for ‘it’s just a beta’ arguments when the game is two days from release.

Art Design, Sound/Audio
Rather than doing a list I’m going to just ramble a bit. I would have to say I would give endless kudos to the art team. Both graphically and sound design wise this game is awe inspiring. The game manages to get down the ‘feel’ of 40k down to a T. The only real complaints is the current weird jank going on with chain weapons. They all act differently and dont seem to rev during certain attacks. The chain ax is a really good example of this, the light attacks ‘chew’ through enemies like they’re supposed to but then the heavy attacks feel like you’re using it like a blunt weapon.

Gameplay wise I’m mostly happy. Fighting enemies feels pretty good although enemies have a habit of rubber banding to you in order to hit you, which causes some weird jank where you get hit by attacks you don’t think you should get hit by or enemies can chase you faster than you can sprint. There’s also some jank with armored enemies and weapons that you would think would have armor piercing. Basically blunt weapons dont seem to have any armor piercing, this includes the thunder hammer of all things not one-shotting helmeted mooks. Of course this is not to mention enemies spawning behind you, but lots of people have pointed htis out.

The biggest, most painful issue I have with the way the game currently works is how ranged enemies work. Ranged enemies existed in vermintide 2 but to a far lesser degree, so stuff like stagger and knockback on them was a lot more warranted. But when i’m playing zealot, trying to run towards a group of ranged enemies just to get repeatedly plinked and thrown across the room like the enemy brought out a comedically large fan and i’m standing on ice.

This is where the game drops the ball, and HARD. Randomized shop, no end of match item rewards unlike in vermintide 2 (not counting emperor’s blessing, that thing sucks and rarely comes up). A crafting system with RNG, incredibly slow currency gains and achievements that are borderline impossible without running a full premade or basically griefing your team.

I really hope they fix this, I’m tired of checking the armory and just hoping it’ll give me the weapon I enjoy using, I hate being stuck with weapons I dislike because of RnG. This is a massive issue with psyker where their staffs account for a tiny proportion of the weapons psykers can use, which means the chances of both getting a staff and the staff you specifically want is abyssmally low.

Classes - Ogryn

Ogryn design wise and on paper is really fun, being huge, smacking around enemies like they’re plushies is a lot of fun. The biggest issue is that we trade the CC that we get for damage. Let me tell you, having tiny amounts of damage can make the game incredibly frustrating. Trying to kill a mutant? That’ll take 10+ hits, more depending on the weapon. Pretty much every class outdamages the ogryn in melee, including the vet.

How would I fix this? Well the answer honestly isn’t to just give them more damage, but instead give them more utility that would fit their ‘support’ nature. In particular I would give them the sundering effect some weapons have in place of their talents that do bleed, not sure why the ogryn has bleed ham-fisted into their talents in the weirdest way possible, but giving the ogryn a reliable way to ‘soften’ up targets for your team to kill would both make melee feel better for yourself, but keep your niche as a support character.

Classes - Psyker

God, the psyker, where do I start? Well to begin with I’ll say that psyker is my favorite class and my most played, it’s a shame it’s plagued with issues. Staves feel :heart::heart::heart::heart::heart::heart::heart: awesome, I love the flamethrower staff and the voidstrike staff, both of them make you feel like space wizards that are decimating foes with your brain power. Sadly, everything else for psyker sucks.

For staffs you have four staffs, three of these have exactly the same primary attack so I really hope you enjoy force bolt. Getting the staff you want as said previously, is a pain because your item pool is massively watered down. In reality the psyker has 6 unique weapons, four staffs, a force sword and the dueling sword. Not a great selection especially as the force sword and dueling sword have extremely similar playstyles.

We also have the issue with BB. BB works great in :>3 difficulties. Above that it starts to take multiple casts to pop a single enemy. This is a huge issue as it means the thing that the psyker is supposed to excel at, suddenly has become useless and easily replaced by a decent sharpshooter.

Lastly, talents. Redo the entire tree. It sucks. The stacking mechanic is awful and forces you to use BB more than you would otherwise like to. You’re supposed to be a ‘telekinetic’ psyker, yet your talent tree is full of pyromancy stuff, it’s really bizarre. Even funnier is that from my own experimentation, the pyromancy talents mixed with a fire staff is actually the strongest combination, especially for higher difficulties.

Classes - Zealot
Zealot is probably my second favorite class, I love getting into the thick of it and switching between blocking, shoving and attacking is seriously engaging. Your class ability is simple but nice, despite it getting nerfed into the ground. The talents are pretty decent, the main issue is that most talents support using light, fast weapons and has no support for two handed, slower weapons like the thunder hammer.

The knockback on ranged enemies as I said before is a bit of a pain, can create some extremely frustrating situations for no good reason, sometimes the mini-stuns of enemies can actually cancel your charge, it’s happened to me on more occassions than I would like.

Weapon wise we get some fun ones, the thunder hammer currently has the issue of having no armor pen, but is otherwise a very fun weapon to use. The eviscerator is also a lot of fun despite the fact it never appears in the armory so I’ve barely had the chance to really play with it. There’s a big issue I’ve found though. There are so many weapons on offer to use, yet you’ll find players using the same handful of them. Why use a heavy sword when you can use an eviscerator? Why use a regular ax when you have a chainax? it’s kinda a big issue, lots of weapons are just far stronger than others outside some niche cases like the zealot bleed knife build, it’s a shame because I like using other weapons, but the moment I try one, I feel like I’m handicapping myself.


All in all even though this feels like an incredibly negative post, I have a lot of hope for this game. Most of the issues I have with the game are extremely easy to fix and should be changed in the future. The gameplay is solid, the art is solid, the levels are solid, the weapon choice is solid outside of balancing. All it needs is some refinement.

The thing I’m mostly worried about is the game being intentionally made worse to play for monetary reasons. The massive grind and how expensive cosmetics are makes me very worried for microtransactions and the like. They’re already confirmed to be in the game due to the deluxe edition coming with premium currency and I honestly hope it’s not hamfisted. Vermintide 2 had microtransactions that were done well and I hope it’s the same here, but with tencent getting a majority share in fatshark, it’s a solid paranoia.

Thanks for reading! I know it’s a bit of a ramble but I wanted to get my thoughts written down, I probably could have dragged it out but I wanted to get my main concerns down. I know some people are just going to say ‘it’s just a beta!’ or ‘you got 100 hours out of it? What do you have to complain?’ and my answers are two - The game releases in two days, and both vermintide and clearly darktide are designed to be games to be played for a long time. I have 100 hours and yet i’ve only gotten two classes to max level and i’ve barely started on gearing. I actually have around 150 hours in vermintide 2 and I have like 8 classes to max level and geared, that’s how different the grind is in darktide.