Absurdo-Swordfighting Game For Honor Has Solo Play

I didn’t actually know Ubisoft were doing a sword-fighting game – I missed it in all the E3 noise. Seems a little bit niche for them in a way, but then again after making 98 different Assassin’s Creeds they’ve probably got the world’s largest archive of clashing steel sound effects, so For Honor [official site] makes a lot of sense.

This producer interview video is mostly chest-thumping, but there’s footage aplenty in there. BLOOD AND METAL.

More importantly it bears a reiteration that there will definitely be a singleplayer component. Some folk have been worrying that the focus was so heavily multiplayer that it couldn’t possibly be for them, so good news on that front. No real details so there’s still a chance it could pull a Battlefront on us – i.e. just a couple of looping bot mods – but producer Stephane Cardin reasurringly drops the c-word. ‘Campaign’ traditionally denotes a sizeable chunk of linked-together solo play with an overarching goal, often with a story attached, but until more details are revealed there are no guarantees that it won’t just be a skirmish playlist, I guess.

“I can promise you that we will have a solo campaign. It’s one of the key subjects we’re working on on the floor. I can’t wait to show stuff to you guys and we’ll do it as early as possible like we did with the multiplayer.”

This isn’t the first time this has been stated – in the original announcement FAQ, Ubi wrote “Yes, there will be a single-player campaign in For Honor and the complete details about that dimension of the experience will come at a later date. It will also be possible to play with and against AI in all our multiplayer modes.” With only multiplayer have been seen since last Summer’s reveal, some have worried that there’d be no solo. Well, now you know. Again.

Whether a campaign mode means some kind of internal logic’n’lore will be applied to explain why Vikings, Samurai and feudal knights are somehow all fighting each other remains to be seen. The Roger Rabbit rule can be easily applied to multiplayer, but maybe less so in a campaign context. Though I remain convinced that Quake III’s ‘aliens did it’ explanation for all its cross-time/species warriors remains the best possible excuse for such things.

The vikings haven’t actually been seen yet, but Cardin reveals that they’ll turn up “very soon.”

Here’s the E3 trailers too, in case you missed ’em.

No sign of a release date yet, but with rumours circulating that Assassin’s Creed is taking a break this year, perhaps For Honor can step in to the Ludicrous Historical Action breach this Winter.

20 Comments

  1. tigershuffle says:

    Looks pretty, but gameplay looks like another generic healthbar slashafon :(

    *waits patiently for Mount & Blade 2*
    Hurry the hell up Taleworlds.

    • Nasarius says:

      Yeah, this looks like a typical third-person action game with some extensive mo-cap work.

      M&B Warband wasn’t that long ago, but I think it feels longer to me because I spent the most time with the M&B beta ten years ago. Warband was a big improvement, but still essentially the same game.

      • Budikah says:

        I’ve got like 1200 hours into Mount and Blade.

        I really hope that the new Bannerlords expansion tightens up on some of the graphics and the combat. Most of what I’ve seen really seems to center around the world map and the campaign.

        I’ve had so many hours into that game… then Brytenwalda for some donkey and stick throwing action with naked dudes, then onto Prophecy of Pendor for some high-fantasy ridiculousness.

        Game is awesome. Here’s to hoping for Bannerlord to rock balls.

    • Renevent says:

      I dunno, the 1-on-1 fights looked anything but. They showed more of this in other videos but button mashing will only be effective against the computer fodder…human fights appear to be extremely tactical with lots of blocking, countering, movement…looks good.

      Also, the thought of manly men doing manly things must really make Alec very uncomfortable.

  2. Artist says:

    Cant help, but I completly dont care about any game about hacking and slashing that does not even build up on the masterful basic fencing mechanics of M&B!
    And this one looks rather like a dumped-down consoley button-smasher. It is?

  3. Obliterati says:

    FWIW, according to the game’s website these aren’t actual Scandinavian and Japanese warriors, but a sort of fantasy version of such. So maybe an “aliens did it” explanation will not be necessary.

  4. Kenny007 says:

    Of course they replaced my favorite faction, the Pirates, in the apparent sequel of Pirates, Vikings, and Knights 2!

  5. int says:

    Honor. Valor. Buttor.

  6. froz says:

    I say the combat on the videos looks quite good, contrary to what some other commenters wrote. Looks like you attack or defend choosing a direction, similar to M&B. On top of that there are some magic skills, like raining arrows etc.

    My main “issue” is that a few times the knight grabbed his sword by the blade and made a big slash like that. While I do realize that some techniques did require grabbing the blade with one hand, but this is just ridiculous.

    • Sian says:

      This video talks about the fighting techniques you see:

      • froz says:

        Thanks! That was very interesting video, I would have never expected that the technique to be real. Nice.

        • Darth Gangrel says:

          I saw that technique used in The Witcher 1 and heard that the animations were based on real fighting techniques, so it was no surprise to me.

    • gwathdring says:

      Skin is tough and flexible–it withstands pressure well and responds well to stretching which is what happens when you grip a thin edge tightly. Skin tears a lot more easily than it breaks or snaps so applying friction to the same small area can pull it apart much more readily–which is what happens when you slice something.

      Cheese is quite different. A swiss or a cheddar cheese is maleable and weakly bonded compared to the tight weave of skin. It responds poorly to being wedged, pulled or stretched and requires very little pressure to separate, however it also isn’t terribly bothered by slicing friction. Hands made of cheese would be very bad for half-swording.

  7. Renevent says:

    It’s a legit move, google mordhau. I agree it does look ridiculous but it’s not as silly in practice. They have gauntlets on and my understanding is most swords back in those days weren’t all that sharp anyways.

    • gwathdring says:

      This is rather incorrect.

      The art of sharpening blades for industrial purposes has gotten a lot better thanks to lasers and mechanized grinders and diamond points, but that’s not to say knives that would be perfectly sharp by the standards of modern warfare or cooking were beyond the technology of the middle ages.

      The reason it works–even against bare flesh–is that cutting is about friction. About sliding. The edge of the blade bites into your flesh and then drags along it. Take a sharp kitchen knife and tap it edge-on against a piece of paper. Compare to a similar amount of pressure applied as you move the blade.

      Flesh is tough and elastic. It can stretch quite a lot and still hold together and it resists pressure quite well. Holding even a very fine edge under impact pressure isn’t going to be anywhere near as effective at breaking skin as slicing it with a moving blade.

      Using skin or leather gloves would work just as well as gautlets, though I suppos egauntlets would be more forgiving in the event that you got sloppy and allowed the blade to slide causing it to cut. If you used a material that was weak to pressure such as cheese to construct your sword grip, half swording wouldn’t work quite so well despite cheese being much harder to slice than skin.

      It’s a matter of how cutting works and material properties of skin and other things, not of the swords not being sharp!

  8. Mr_Blastman says:

    Dark Souls it is not. The combat seems interesting… but… the gore isn’t as gratuitous as Chivalry and I doubt the depth is there compared with Chivalry, too.

    • Slackar says:

      Hey, I love Chivalry. But you can only play the same game for so long. The more, the merrier I say.

      • Budikah says:

        Chivarly seemed to hit all of the marks for me on paper, but somewhere in practice felt like it fell short in comparison to my time with Mount and Blade.

  9. Aborted Man says:

    Ah man it hurts my heart to see people dismissing this game so easily as a “button masher”. It’s not. I played hours upon hours when I was able and the gameplay is fantastic. Hits/duels are so extremely satisfying when you win. Skill/strategy is definitely a factor in this game as there’s multiple forms and styles to fight in that affect what you can and cannot do defensively/offensively.

    I usually don’t pick up AAA games with a 1 year expiration date because they’re all polish and no guts, (I usually play flight sims and other deep games…balls deep) but I’m eagerly awaiting For Honor’s release and will be buying it day one.

  10. Bweahns says:

    Looks pretty. I’d rather play Chivalry though.