Developer Amplitude Studios today delved deeper into how combat works in historical 4X strategy game Humankind. Taking inspiration from Endless Legend, players get to control individual units, deciding when and how they strike in turn-based battles. But the upcoming title also builds upon its fantasy counterpart, bringing things to a whole new level.
Outside of combat, units roam the map grouped in armies, reducing the need for micromanagement. When Humankind throws enemies your way and combat begins, all the units in the army deploy on the chunk of the hex-based map where the battle takes place.
In Endless Legend, the units you brought to a battle were all that you could work with. That won't be the case in Humankind, which lets you bring in soldiers from outside ongoing battles. This way, you can outflank opponents and potentially turn the tide of fights that seem hopeless.
Humankind's combat takes place on the world map, knowledge of its terrain being instrumental for getting the most out of your armies. A cavalry unit waiting on a forest tile can ambush opponents, while archers positioned on hills make it harder for melee units to reach them.
Each unit has a class and can also come with abilities that prove useful in combat. Depending on your chosen culture, you'll have access to different emblematic units alongside a shared pool of common ones. The armor of common units also changes based on the culture they're a part of, providing visual variety and a welcome dose of immersion.
You'll be able to differentiate between Greek, Persian, and Chinese archers at a glance. This also extends to animations: Roman legionnaires will make use of the testudo formation, while Greek spearmen position themselves in a phalanx.
As the game moves throughout the ages, the scope and scale of battles also increases. They might start off as small skirmishes but, as you unlock new units and technology, you'll have to also face your opponents at sea. Towards the endgame, you can expect "continent-spanning battles" in which you'll have to juggle regular units, aircraft, artillery support, and more.
The developer diary, which you can watch below, also gives us a better look at the battle UI. Humankind is slated for an April 22 release on PC and Google Stadia. Mod support is also confirmed but won't be available at launch.
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