Warhammer 40k: Eternal Crusade is out on Steam Early Access with a small chunk of the planned game

[Update]: Warhammer 40k: Eternal Crusade will be closing down its doors in September 2021.

Back when Eternal Crusade was first being announced it was labeled as a massively multiplayer third person shooter where four factions (Space Marines, Chaos, Eldar and Orcs) would vie for supremacy on a massive map with Tyranid attacks occurring every now and then to even out the odds.

The Eternal Crusade entering Steam Early Access today is a much different beast entirely, choosing to focus on smaller scale battles between Space Marines and Chaos as the developers work out the kinks in the gameplay. All of the things mentioned above are still planned for release though it might be a while before they arrive.

Check out the announcement trailer:


Here's what you can expect from Eternal Crusade's Early Access version:

Space Marines featuring the Dark Angels, Blood Angels and Ultramarines chapters

    - 5 classes, Tactical, Assault, Ground Assault, Devastator and Apothecary

    - 3 vehicles: Rhino, Predator & Vindicator

Chaos Space Marines featuring the Word Bearers, Alpha Legion and Black Legion

    - 5 classes, Traitor, Traitor Assault, Raptor, Havoc & Aspiring Sorcerer

    - 3 vehicles: Chaos Rhino, Chaos Predator & Chaos Vindicator

Additional features include

    - Combat abilities such as psychic powers, jump packs, buff system, executions, heavy weapon modes, cover system, healing and more.

    - Extensive HUD for situational awareness, character status, scoreboards, squad elements, powers and buff status

    - In game map detailing deployments, waypoints, and objective status

    - Group systems, rescue systems, auto-barks and squad bonuses. 

Weekly patch schedule

As for the gameplay itself I've done a bit of research and from what I've seen on various youtube videos it seems that Eternal Crusade's gameplay heavily resembles the one found in the now defunct THQ's Space Marine. If that really is the case I have high hopes for Eternal Crusade because Space Marine was a simply awesome experience for a Warhammer fanboy like me.

If you find yourself excited for Eternal Crusade and feel like jumping make sure you are ready to handle a highly unfinished game. There are plenty of performance problems and bugs as well as missing features which include entire races, maps, weapons and more. Don't take this as me trash talking Eternal Crusade but rather take it as a warning because unlike many Early Access games today that are "almost finished" this one is still very early in development. 

There is no release date set for Eternal Crusade right now though according to its Steam page it is going to be in Early Access for a "number of months" so a 2016 launch is not out of the question.