Warhammer Quest iOS Review

Warhammer Quest iOS review
Like the passing of the seasons board games come and go. Some get rightly forgotten; poor design, roll and move and questionable TV licence tie-ins. Some however get revered, remembered for years and wanted by many to be played again. These games may be completely lost to time, forgotten about or the holder of the original rights lost so that they may never be reprinted. Others will be sat on by a games company that has streamlined its commercial enterprise and “managed its core business” and so decided that these board games are not its thing anymore. But lo, what is this, a new market has arrived, the kids these days are jabbing fingers onto the brightly coloured etch-a-sketches. And so it is that Warhammer Quest, a much revered dungeon crawling board game from the mid-nineties has made its way into your hands.

Warhammer Quest iOS review throne room
Now you have the opportunity to re-live your miss-spent youth and experience Games Workshop’s fantasy adventure all over again. Warhammer Quest is available for the iPhone and iPad and is an almost exact translation of the 90’s classic. You will take on the role of four trusty warriors as they travel from town to town plundering all forms of underground dwellings. Warhammer Quest does a fine job of recreating the game whilst also adding that veneer of atmosphere that only video games are capable of doing.

Warhammer Quest iOS review spiders
The animation is very good, the way the spiders, move makes my skin itch.

Unfortunately being a video game it decides it’s best to hide all that cumbersome dice rolling from you, you didn’t want to see that did you? The problem is by hiding how the dice mechanics are working you have no understanding about how any of the mechanics are working. Your finest warrior will miss constantly or monsters will randomly appear for no apparent reason. Without some transparency these mechanics just seem completely random.

Warhammer Quest iOS review goblins
Warhammer Quest's tendency to height dice rolls means I have no idea why I'm now surrounded.

There’s no doubting that Warhammer Quest is a damn pretty game. The dungeon floor tiles glisten and your heroes move with grace and great detail, the marauder putting down his sword and shield when using his bow is a nice touch and a great example of the attention to detail given. Sometimes however the top down view becomes a bit of hindrance, especially when playing on the smaller screen of the iPhone. You can zoom in and out to better plan your actions but with only a head and shoulders view I’ve sometimes got a hero confused with an orc and subsequently taken a sword to the back. It also takes a while to differentiate the boss creatures from the regular troops but clicking on each bad guy brings up a little mini stats window so you can always check if needs be.

Warhammer Quest iOS review zoomed out
You can zoom far out to get a better view of the dungeon.

For a mobile game, Warhammer Quest doesn’t half pack it all in. To complete all the main quests is going to take you around eight to ten hours of playing; some full price console games don’t even manage that and that doesn’t include the pick n mix selection of side quests on offer. However that longevity comes at a price and that price is repetition. With the base game, as sold on the appstore, come only two kinds of enemies; greenskins and critters (spider, bats and rats).  Although the game mixes up the type of enemy, including river trolls and gigantic spiders at higher levels, it still falls into two broad groups and you’re soon getting bored of hitting rats and orc boyz.

Warhammer Quest iOS review inventory
The inventory is accessed rotating the device top portrait.
The skaven and minotaur of the original board game are missing and there disappearance becomes apparent when you visit the in-app store. Yes, for a mere £2.99, the same price you paid for the original app, you can buy the skaven quest set. It’s not so much that these have been removed is the biggest problem it’s that the game is noticeably absent of the variety a third type of adversary would have added. By the time you are five hours into the game every dungeon looks the same and you already know what kind of monsters you’re going to face.

There’s also the option to buy extra gold and additional characters. Now the characters I’m not too offended by, as these where always extras in the original cardboard incarnation but to take the skaven out of the main game feels a bit cheeky. The gold however is neither here nor there, sure you can buy gold if you want but Warhammer Quest isn’t constantly badgering you to do so and throughout most of the game I didn’t feel it was required to progress. This changes towards the higher levels, levelling up your warriors requires spending gold on training and at the higher levels the cost of training far exceeds a typical dungeon’s haul. Of course you could just grind through, but the sudden price hike does feel intended to make you think about spending real money.

Warhammer Quest iOS review river troll
Boss characters such as river trolls add variety but the selection of bas guys soon gets stale.

Warhammer Quest may be concealing information from you, its quests may be repetitive and there’s the begrudging feeling that some of the content is being hidden behind a pay wall but still there’s something that draws you into those depths, something that engages you to explore just one more dungeon. Maybe it’s the Pavlovian compulsion to level up and gain more loot that is at the heart of so many games. Perhaps your rose tinted goggles of nostalgia are making you kiddy from replaying a board game of your youth. Or maybe it’s because this game is actually that good; the graphics are beautiful, the controls elegant and there is nothing more satisfying than using a giant axe to smack an orc in the face.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Next PostNewer Post Previous PostOlder Post Home


  1. I sometimes get irritated that I don't know why my characters (especially my ranger) is always missing its target, but other than that I really enjoy the game. It's good to see a Warhammer video turn out pretty damn well.

    1. It took several dungeons until I realised that wandering monsters trigger when the winds of magic roll is zero. It's odd because many games hide the mechanics away from you but you don't notice, or don't care. Warhammer Quest seems to make it too obvious that something has been hidden.