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Hellish Quart, physics swordfighting game, is out now

Bushido Blade with physics

Bushido Blade is one of those videogames that has transcended into legend. The 1997 PlayStation fighting game was defined not by combos and health bars, but by quick, tense swordfights in which a single strike could kill you or your opponent. There's been very little else like it since.

Enter Hellish Quart, out in early access today. It's Bushid-ish - there are swords, there are duels, and there are one-slash kills - but it goes a step further by having all your movements be physics-based.

Cover image for YouTube videoHellish Quart - Trailer 3

The game's Steam page says that its developers intend for the game to be in early access for one to two years. Aside from taking onboard player feedback, they're going to be using that time to develop a full singleplayer campaign. Given its historical setting, I hope it's a bit like Ridley Scott's The Duellists.

I never played Bushido Blade, but I sure have had people talk at me about it. I say it's "transcended into legend" because I'd swear half the people who talk about it haven't played it either - they've just read about it and think it sounds cool. Instead I'm going to choose to think of Hellish Quart as the upscaled version of Nidhogg, another fabulous one-on-one swordfighting game. I've had many hours of fun shanking pals and trying to get eaten by a big worm in Nidhogg, and I hope for the same from Hellish Quart.

Sadly Hellish Quart doesn't have online multiplayer yet, but it's got local multiplayer and supports Steam's "Remote Play Together" feature, which lets you play local multiplayer games over the internet. Meaning it sort of does have online multiplayer, I guess. But there's no magic Steam feature that adds big worms to games, so there's still much to look forward to.

There's a demo you can grab via Steam, and the full game will cost you £11.46/$14.44/€11.89.

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Graham Smith

Deputy Editorial Director

Rock Paper Shotgun's former editor-in-chief and current corporate dad. Also, he continues to write evening news posts for some reason.