First cab off the rank for the new Warhammer+ is Angels of Death episode 1, Blood and Duty. For somebody who has long fallen out of love with the actual tabletop game, but still can’t get enough of the books and animations like Astartes, when I saw the Warhammer+ announcement I was so happy. Games Workshop seeing animator creators making money from their IP through Patreon and YouTube and the like was only going to end one of two ways—take down notice or employment. I’m glad that for most that this is where we land. Fan creators are getting employed and not sued.
In Blood and Duty a space marine Blood Angels captain is missing, lost on a planet covered by electrical storms and facing off against the endless horde of the Tyranids. Aboard a battle cruiser in orbit, Sergeant ??? must push his brothers to make a run to the surface to save their leader. However there’s only 11 of the full 100 compliment of the company left alive, and the geneseed taken from slain brothers to create new space marines would be left all but unguarded should they drop to the surface to attempt rescue.
Beautifully animated in greyscale except for the red of armour and helmet lenses, Blood and Duty is a visually stunning introduction to the Warhammer+ content. The approach conveys darkness and grit so well, and with the animators working overtime on the gothic glory of the scenery, Blood and Duty is gloriously presented. I watched a review of Warhammer+ opening 48hrs and the YouTuber mentioned being off put by the mouth movement animation. Honestly, it didn’t bother me—we’re watching a stylistic animation, not a human.
Blood and Duty presents a simple story so far, with a clear direction for following episodes, some external conflict and some internal conflict amongst the marines. It has all of the great building blocks of an excellent animated series, and alongside the eagerly anticipated Astartes Season 2, shows that Games Workshop are here to deliver top quality content through Warhammer+
Watch Angels of Death: Blood and Duty on Warhammer+