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Researching For Authenticity, War Of The Roses Style

Now I'll never fulfill my dream of being a ravishingly attractive hand model!

Regardless of the final product’s authenticity, it’s pretty easy for, say, Medal of Honor, Battlefield, or Call of Duty’s developers to get an inside look at how their subject matter really works. The real War of the Roses, on the other hand, took place roughly six centuries ago, and time travel either hasn’t been invented yet or was wiped out by someone who traveled back in time to destroy time travel. And so, the War of the Roses team did the next best thing: they ran around England in authentic medieval armor. Hilarity, as you might expect, ensued. You can now view the entire four-part behind-the-scenes saga (which also contains some pretty fascinating info) via the modern sorcery that is streaming video after the break.

So I now know the origin of the term “bollocks.” I wasn’t expecting to learn that today. The amount of nuance that goes into recreating this type of battle is very impressive, though. Mount and Blade aside, great melee-focused medieval games are few and far between, and I feel like this kind of explains why. It’s one thing to swing a sword while wearing shiny steel pants. It’s another thing for it to feel weighty yet powerful – and not like caressing a pinata with a rotten stick while your legs are stuck in a trash can.

War of the Roses is launching next week, and – based on what we’ve played so far – it’s shaping up to be pretty special. Also, not entirely realistic, given the relative effectiveness of my suicidal lance jousting tactics. But then, War of the Roses never claimed to be a sim. Fun is its main goal, and I think it’s got a pretty good shot at delivering.

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Nathan Grayson


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