The next Total War game will be soon. As most Total War enjoyers know, the series is made by Creative Assembly (CA), which has been on the ropes for a few years now with its popularity. The success of Total War: Three Kingdoms is still lasting (albeit with a bitter aftertaste from the DLCs), and Warhammer III had a rocky release. But CA is still running strong as a company. Warhammer III has been promised three DLC launches this year, and CA’s new title Hyenas will take some of its attention for now.
The next game to be released by Creative Assembly is a game called Hyenas, which looks like a melange of Payday, Saints Row, Fortnite and Borderlands.
Creative Assembly describes it as an “ ambitious multi-platform challenger” and a “space piracy smash and grab”. For a developer known for creating Total War and Alien: Isolation, this seems to be a left-turn for Creative Assembly, and perhaps them trying to break into the incredibly lucrative multiplayer shooter space. But when is the next Total War game out if they are focusing on Hyenas? And are Creative Assembly even releasing another full Total War game?
Next Total War game?
The next Total War game will be Total War: Pharaoh.
A trailer for Total War: Pharaoh was also released on 24th May 2023, depicting two scarabs fighting, but so far doesn’t confirm much about the game.
It has also been pointed out that this isn’t another ‘Saga’ title, which Creative Assembly used for their smaller titles Thrones of Britannia and Troy, so it’s likely that this is a mainline entry.
Total War games have been slowly moving away from historical realism to a slightly more mythical style in their recent games, so it is likely that this title will be a mixture of historical realism, but with a fantasy element in it. After Troy, the Romance mode of Three Kingdoms and Warhammer II and III, it is clear that Creative Assembly (CA) are taking the games into a more ‘epic battle’ style of gameplay focused on the strength of heroes, rather than being more realistic and historic.
The general flop of Thrones of Britannia will confirm that either CA isn’t too concerned with making any more history-focused titles, or that they’ve simply forgotten how to. Fear of innovation could prove to be a problem for the company, as they try to double down on what has worked before, but not branch out into anything new, meaning everything will be getting multiple instalments that were never asked for.
Total War: Pharaoh might be another historical title, but it’s hard to imagine they won’t add in some form of fantasy into the game.
Total War: Three Kingdoms 2
After releasing the final DLC for Three Kingdoms (Fates Divided, to ‘Mixed’ reviews), the developers dropped the game, and released a video titled ‘Moving on from Total War: THREE KINGDOMS – Dev update.‘ You only need to glance at the comments to see the response; overall fans were not happy with their approach. After releasing several DLCs which by many were considered sub-par and even broken, the decision to move on so abruptly, and in such a positive manner, was a kick in the teeth for some.
In the video, Lulu Zhang, associate art director, informs us that the development team “has now transitioned into pre-production for our next entry in the Three Kingdoms universe”. However, with the leaks of Total War: Pharaoh, it seems like this title might still be in the works.
The video also speaks about deepening the development of the characters, and how they are “increasing our focus on the novel’s rich cast of characters and their individual and unique narratives, taking the core of what made Three Kingdoms so special and pushing it further.” This suggests that they are focusing on the strength of individual characters and the mythical side of the Three Kingdoms – this direction they seem to be taking with Total War generally.
Total War: Medieval 3
Medieval 3 is the game fans are asking for. This is a title that would be so well received by the Total War community, especially if it also returned to its true historical roots, but unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be any evidence that CA is working on it.
Last year, Ian Roxburgh, game director at Creative Assembly, spoke to TechRadar about Medieval 3:
“Of course we’ve considered it. It is constantly on the radar because we know it’s something the fans really want… As a studio, it’s something we will do at some point, I’m sure.”
This seems like an acknowledgement of the fans, but hardly any confirmation that we will see the game soon.
Total War: Empire 2
Empire 2 is the other game that Total War fans are wishing for. However, this is a trickier one, as an Empire Total War 2 mod already exists, and Total War: Napoleon was in effect a successor to Empire, as while it did reduce the map size and scale, it provided a much more refined experience to Empire.
Therefore, CA may not be planning on releasing this soon, if at all, as interest in Empire and Napoleon is still being sustained by those games and the mods, and CA’s attention has been around Warhammer and Three Kingdoms, which are vastly different types of warfare and gameplay style. A ‘hero’ style game which CA are leaning towards would be difficult to implement in Empire’s warfare style, so they might not be interested in reviving it at all.
Total War: Pharaoh Predictions
Gameplay reveals are likely to immediately show which style of play CA has gone for, and based on the fanbase’s reaction already, a transition away from historical gameplay will be generally unpopular – so support for this title could go either way.
We’ll keep you updated on the progression of Total War: Pharaoh, which is likely to see some legitimate reveals at Summer Game Fest.