This is the second weekend I manage to try a demo or beta of some sort, for a game I’m not sure I want to buy. Last weekend was Rainbow Six Siege, which by the way was a lot of fun, but easily frustrating when your team walks around you while you bleed to death. It was an enjoyable experience, but half the time I was praying like Geppetto on a star for some real-life teammates. Anyways that’s not what this blog is about, it’s all about FOR HONOR!! This game is by all accounts fun, and learning curb is complicated but well worth it. I’m gonna break down the review and keep in mind I did just play a beta.
It wouldn’t be a Ubisoft game if it didn’t recycle a little bit of its predecessor’s background graphics. At times when you run around, the game feels like an Assassins Creed incarnate. It isn’t a bad thing per say when Ubisoft has had some amazing character graphics throughout the year. What I found important was the smoothness of the graphics. Despite there being a good amount of action happening all around like catapult explosions, soldiers fighting, foe and allies fighting around you, the frame rate never really dipped, not that I noticed. The game had a way of keeping itself consistent and nothing out of the ordinary happened. In the end though, the game doesn’t push itself to be some majestic piece of art. It knows its limitations and it succeeds by providing you with a good experience. Don’t expect over the top detail though, what you see is what you get, and for some, this might prove to be a problem.
This is where this game shines. The gameplay is split into two characteristics that make it stand out. When you first start the training, it feels like a curb that’s easily overcome. You learn your basic blocking, parrying, and attacks, and off you go to play. This is where the game really sucked me in. In my first battle, I went in swinging like I was playing Dynasty Warriors again, finesse be damned. Before I knew it, I was running around with no stamina, getting my back poked like a skewered steak. The learning didn’t stop there. When I finally learned not to mash, I learned to block properly. From there, block breaking, combos, stamina conserving, all became factors real quickly. The games learning curb turns steep quickly but is so rewarding at the same time. When you are able to master different combos, against different classes, different opponents, finally able to fight two people at once, then this game starts to really take off. Not to mention clean gameplay is what the game is all about. Bad matchups can be overcome with clean and proper gameplay.
The game is diverse when it comes to you choosing your faction of heroes per say. First, there are three factions to choose from Vikings, Knights, and Samurais. Each faction has its own individual subclasses ranging from sword and shield to pike long-range, to heavy two-handed bruisers. Each plays differently and carries both a strength and weakness. In those subclasses, they all have 4 different abilities, all which can be activated with your D-pad. The game is immersive and offers quite a bit of combination of teams looking to counter pick or diversify themselves from their teammates. Which leads to my different point.
The different types of gameplay were fun and a great change from each mode. 4vs4 team deathmatch is your typical divide and conquer. You basically have 3 capture points, with each yielding points and a place to heal – the game offers no other ways of healing except when you stand on your point or some character skill set. This mode has A and C points that are basically stand to capture points. B being the middle has each team’s soldiers vying for control. You must run back and forth defending A and C, while helping your CPU soldier allies keep pushing for control in the middle.
4vs4 elimination offers you a game mode which each match starts you off on a 1vs1 match from the get go. There is some strategy to this because sometimes there will be damage, heal, run and defense buffs where you are fighting. Another strategy involves you running away from a bad match up and finding a teammate to quickly help dispatch their opponent and later returning to kill your initial opponent on a 2vs1.
2vs2 duel is alike to 4vs4 elimination. Both you and your team either start side by side or in your own respective duals and the winner usually is granted the chance to team up with his opponent.
The controls can be pretty challenging at first. I felt confused or overwhelmed with which buttons to press. The blocking was a little challenging though, as the only way to block is by move your R3 stick to the side that it requires. It has a steep learning curve to master but when done correctly, you see yourself fighting two people at once and coming out on top.
The game requires a good amount of team play. You’ll find yourself double teaming on a poor opponent who decided it was a good idea to push alone or you yourself will get smashed in the back from some opponent’s teammate who was waiting in the shadows. This game requires you to watch your back at all times, as well as your teammates. This is where the online was impressive. The game never hiccuped once for me. Never did the game lag, chug or lose frame rate. I did see an odd glitch where my brother got stuck climbing the ladder, but that was the only one.
There is also the faction choice you are made to choose at the beginning. When you are about to start your campaign, you are given a choice of the big three Vikings, Knights and Samurai. With each win you achieve online, you acquire game assets that you can allocate to different areas of the world map. It’s set in real time, so the better you do, the more assets you can put on the world map to push for your faction to begin to take over other territories or better yet defend what you have. Truthfully I need to look deeper into this to how it works and I found myself randomly allocating assets just because I had them.
This game has potential to become something competitive and entertaining to watch. With e-Sports being all the rage right now with Overwatch, COD, and Battlefield this game has potential to become a mainstay in the scene. For Honor keeps all the elements that make a game fun and competitive, but give players the opportunity to build upon more than just casual fun. They allow players to achieve mastery over their controls and feel rewarded when they take the time to really practice. The beta offered just a few maps, but with the full game offering a range of 12 maps and Ubisoft promising all future maps as free DLC, you can’t go wrong picking this game up. With a good chance of the game expanding on the big three classes, on the subclasses, customizable weapons, colors, apparel, there is potential for you to keep coming back over and over. It offers a nice change to the overwhelming amount of competitive shooters and fighting games out there. The only gripe I have with the game is, without a team it can be a little frustrating and it takes away from some of the fun. In the end however, that comes with every multiplayer game.
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- Great team game
- Good graphics
- Many different classes and sub-traits
- Potential for growth and expansion
- Free DLC
- Controls are complicated for beginners
- Hard to master
- A lot of character mechanics are left unexplained in the tutorial