Last year's Games Convention in Leipzig, Germany, was a busy one for The Creative Assembly. Not only did the West Sussex, UK-headquartered developer announce a brand-new installment in its highly involved Total War real-time strategy series, but it also debuted its first game for current-generation consoles, the Norse-mythology influenced action title Viking: Battle for Asgard on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.
While Viking didn't win much glory with critics, Sega today announced that The Creative Assembly's next effort would also be on consoles--as well as the PC. Titled Stormrise, the game is what The Creative Assembly calls its "first foray into purpose-built RTS titles for consoles," having been built from the ground up for the Xbox 360 and PS3. A PC edition is also in development, though it was unclear whether it would be optimized for the PC as well.
Leading on consoles isn't the only change The Creative Assembly is making to its history-based Total War formula. Stormrise picks up the popular postapocalyptic theme, presenting a civilization that has begun to once again emerge after a catastrophic event. Two warring factions arise from the rubble: the Echelon, a technologically advanced race that endured the planet's fallout by way of self-induced hibernation, and the Sai, a tribal society that adapted to the new environment and evolved.
A change in scenery won't be the only divergence, however. Rather than Total War's detached, general's-armchair view of battlefields, players will assume the role of frontline commander. The Creative Assembly will also introduce an element of "verticality," where units can be deployed in the air, on rooftops, at ground level, or below the planet's surface.
Stormrise is in development at The Creative Assembly's Australian studio and is expected to arrive for the Xbox 360, PS3, and PC in 2009.