A Thorny Issue: War Of The Roses

Never visit a dentist whose clinic is in a field and whose helmet obscures his view. Also he is a murderer from the past instead of a dentist.

Every time I see War of the Roses it appeals to me more. A multiplayer game that features knights killing each other instead of space marines? Yes, that’ll do. And that’s knights killing knights, by the way, not knights killing space marines, miraculous as such a thing would be. Here is a developer diary that handily features the developer floating in front of in-game footage, thereby managing to be informative and entertaining at the same time. It’s all about ranged combat, with Gears of War cited as an influence, although for its active reload mechanic rather than its chainsaw-guns. Observe.

Here’s an odd fact: I captured the screengrab at the top of this post without checking the images we already had of the game. Seems like me and Jim are both amused by rambunctious face-stabbing. The game looks more like a swords and shields team deathmatch affair than the more elaborate and large-scale battle engine I first expected, but it seems like an enjoyable romp regardless.


  1. OJSlaughter says:

    I was hoping for a British developer. Damn this dirty foreigners, stealing our history.

    Silliness aside, this game looks pretty cool. Might make a change from all the shooters out there.

    • Defiant Badger says:

      How does it link to the War of the Roses if it’s just a multiplayer team deathmatch gum, aside from being set in the same era?

  2. JB says:

    I am also looking forward to WotR. The one thing that ticked me off a little in that video was the repeating of the footage, but mirrored. Seemed odd, why not just loop it?

    On second thoughts, I’m not feeling 100%, so best to just watch the face-stabbing again I think.

    • Brise Bonbons says:

      You’re not alone finding the mirrored footage irrationally irritating. It felt sort of cheap and duplicitous to me. If they’d just looped it, I wouldn’t really notice, but as it was I felt like they were trying to pull a fast one.

  3. PleasingFungus says:

    So the Gears of War active reload mechanic is being used in games as widely-spread as GoW, this, and Spy Party. (With explicit credit.)

    An idea that’s time has come, I guess!

    • DK says:

      Active Reload also in Darkest of Days – with the upgrade of having a downside of you failed the active reload. Essentially giving you the option of normal-reload, quick reload or failed quick reload, the latter taking much longer than a normal reload would have taken.

      • Ushao says:

        Also in Alien Swarm

      • Mattressi says:

        Is it weird that when playing DoD, I would purposely fail every reload of a cap-lock musket and the revolver, simply because I felt they reloaded to fast? I think I’m one of the few people who would love a realistic, first person US revolutionary war or civil war game.

    • svr says:

      Active reload eh? More like quick time event reload. PASS!

      • JB says:

        That’s the beauty of it, you don’t *have* to do anything. If you choose, you can just reload normally.

      • cassus says:

        I wouldn’t call it quick time in this case. Typical quick time events are absolutely horrible, and together with cover systems they form a diabolic duo of game-deterioration. They add NOTHING to gameplay. However, active reload feels more like a thing you do that sort of makes sense. I know a lot of people who get mad if there’s no automatic reload, if they have to click R to reload, that’s too much of a bother. I would like more stuff to do during reloads, especially when reloading a flintlock, cause that takes FOREVER. Just sitting there for 20 seconds watching the dude do what he does… I could peal an orange in that time.. I would much rather have a sort of minigame, or rhythm game, as it might be, that might increase or mess up my reload.

        Oh balls, forgot the cotton ball, now It’ll misfire..
        DANG the crossbow slipped off my foot while pulling the string, the stock came at my face and knocked out a tooth.
        Put in some persistent damage to your avatar and you’ll be able to tell who sucks at reloading crossbows by seeing peoples toothless smiles.

  4. Askeladd says:

    Lets add more drama to it: *Stab in the eye* Hm, just another stab to be sure, *stab stab stab*

    It’s not that I dislike this but in multiplayer games with fixed kill animations its often the ranged classes that are just waiting for their fellow meele “friend” to die to get a nice shot at a rooted enemy knight.

    • 2late2die says:

      I actually kinda do dislike it. :)
      I mean maybe not really but it does seem to me like any stab in the face other than the first one is just rubbing it in really. I mean come on guy, you just stabbed him in the face, is it really not enough for you? Do you think he might survive that? Is that second stab, and a third in the neck really all that necessary? Come on!

      • Askeladd says:

        Oh it’s probably to show us that all people of that time where homicidal maniacs. At least you’d need to be to fight as meele outside of your fighting formation.

  5. Khemm says:

    It’s funny how people’s opinions differ – every time I see WotR, it appears to me less and less. What could be a great quasi-RPG experience, an evolved form of Mount&Blade maybe with some elements from Darklands added in to spice things up will be a stupid multiplayer whack-a-mole like many others instead, except with a twist (swords, axes, crossbows and bows instead of guns).
    Boo, Paradox. Boo.

    • Blackcompany says:

      Agree 100%. What happened to quality single player games?

      This question may well be on the lips and minds of many people, when they finally tire of leaping from one MMO to the next in search of something qualitative and new. And by that time they likely won’t have an answer available….

      • Defiant Badger says:

        While it’d certainly be nice for another Mount and Blade type of game I don’t think that’s what they were ever striving for.

        Though from the looks of it, it seems like a poorly tacked on multiplayer mode for a sequel to a strictly single player game. Which is a bit sad.

        • Askeladd says:

          Which makes me think: What are TaleWorlds doing?
          Mount and Blade is one of the most played games on Steam. It peaks daily at ~ 5k.

    • Meusli says:

      I was also disappointed by the quake like experience they are offering. Nothing like a “pretty” Mount and Blade.

    • lhzr says:

      Huh? Didn’t they say befare this was gonna be a free-roaming melee combat game, not a multiplayer only arena thing? What the hell.

    • Davie says:

      For once I agree with you, Khemm. This still looks fun, but only because it’s basically a shiner version of Mount & Blade’s multiplayer. I thought the original plans had stated some singleplayer bits, and it’s disappointing that those don’t appear to exist anymore.

    • SexualHarassmentPanda says:

      The game looks decent, but I am not expecting much considering how Lead & Gold was done.
      If anything it will tide us over until Mount & Blade 2.

  6. RedViv says:

    Space Marines, hmm. Still waiting for a Mount&Blade-like Warhammer/40K game. I will pay money for that. Good money, even. Possibly some of my best money!

    • hypercrisis says:

      maybe you should donate to the team working on the 40k mod then

      • RedViv says:

        Always an option. But I don’t think that the mechanics a mod for M&B allows would suffice to scratch that itch. Will have a look though.

    • Fumarole says:

      I’m waiting for Total War: 40k myself. That or an Inquisition RPG.

      • Grygus says:

        40K: Total War? I never even thought of that, but now that you say it, it seems obvious and I want it.

      • Askeladd says:

        Personally I’m waiting for the day all humanity is happy, well-fed, no diseases and discrimination exists in human hearts, our planet is not destroyed by us, instead it’s our garden eden and we found a way to life with nature and technology together in balance.
        That would be the same day CA is gonna do a Bethesda and adds proper modding support to their games.

  7. hypercrisis says:

    Looks rather desolate. Perhaps this is a vision of a post apocalypse in the 15th century? A past in which a handful of men fight each other for the best castle.

    Perhaps i’ve been spoilt by full of carnage of sieges in Mount and Blade with hundreds of menfolk fighting for ages, the terrible AI fumbling its way up siege towers, and that beautiful image of running through a sky heaving with arrows as your peasant army drops to the floor around you and your meticulously amassed elite unit

    • PleasingFungus says:

      I loved Mount and Blade, but be honest: for “medieval battles”, its fighters were really not that thick on the ground.

      I think you’ve got a case of the nostalgia goggles!

      • Grargh says:

        To be sure, even if they should manage to get 32 players on either side it would make for a rather ridiculous siege. You just can’t get the feeling of a vaguely historically believable medieval battle in an online deathmatch, I think.

      • hypercrisis says:

        No, just this, one of the single most essential mods link to forums.taleworlds.com

  8. Bungle says:

    He said he wanted to extend the combat out a bit but they give players a one-shot killer in the flintlock. I haven’t played the game, obviously, but that kind of talk worries me.

  9. Davie says:

    The problem with inaccurate, slow-reload, one-hit-kill ranged weapons is that they will invariably be used as stealthy melee weapons. In both Mount & Blade and Age of Chivalry people only used crossbows or thrown weapons within five feet of and preferably behind their opponent.

  10. danimalkingdom says:

    Yayayayay this looks like a fun game. plus i love the wars of the roses. although on that note:

    1-these guys look more 14th century than 15th century. I want early renaissance armour dern it!

    2- also flintlocks in the 15th century? pretty sure they didn’t appear until the 17th. I think he means matchlocks. KNOW YOUR HISTORIES. That is all.

  11. Puckoidiot says:

    I’m looking forward to this very much indeed. Lead and Gold was great, and this seems like pretty much Lead and Gold with knights. I can live with that.

  12. Grargh says:

    Well, at least the handling of fall damage while clad in metal armour will be like Mount&Blade, if I got those last few seconds right…

  13. Artist says:

    Amazing, M&B: Warband already owned their MP-combat system! Im still sure that Taleworlds never new what amazing combat system theyve implemented when they made the MP for M&B.

  14. dsch says:

    This is bringing back (for no good reason) happy memories of lancing an entire enemy army by myself in M&B.

  15. CaptainWhappin says:

    Im more interested in the next Age of Chivalry since it’s first person. First person hack and slash > 3rd person hack and slash.

  16. daggerbite says:

    I’m not seeing any horses on that video. How can you have knight vs knight combat without cavalry??

  17. ExecutionersBong says:

    Flintlocks? You gotta be kidding me

  18. MordeaniisChaos says:

    Looks really sharp visually, but it looks like Lead and Gold with swords… And Lead and Gold was already a bit janky and wonky, making it medieval looks like it might make things worse.