Video Game Review: CHIVALRY: MEDIEVAL WARFARE
The medieval period has always been an period of time that has always struggled to be translated successfully into video game form. Perhaps because it bears no relevance today unlike the copious amounts of nuclear-war inspired games that are so often churned out. However in Chivalry: Medieval Warfare we have an exciting and engaging experience, topped off with gratuitous gore for good measure. If life as a medieval soldier was brutal then Torn Banner Studios have captured it to perfection.
Reviewing this game was a particularly difficult because unlike most games there is essentially no story. The brief and optional training mode explains the background context: a division between the military of the fictional land of Agatha results in two factions forming- the Agathaian Knights and the Mason Order. A fairly basic set up. But this is not a game played for its story, its strengths lie in the hard and fast combat of its various multi player modes. Choosing from four basic classes (through which you then further choose weapons) you can engage in objective based team death match or free for all. The games take place on the various and surprisingly stunning maps.
However as soon as you set foot on the battlefield you have little time to take in the views. Combat is difficult and demanding, a welcome change from the increasingly common sit-back-and-shoot style. Timing is as potent as the weapon you choose, a miss timed block could literally cause you to loose your head, accompanied by spray of bloody and noise like a watermelon being dropped from a tall building. The variety of weapons mean that adaptation for any situation is easy, albeit they do have to be unlocked first. At times the combat becomes irritating, wild swings from enemies and allies alike can sweep you off your feet before you even have time to realise what’s going on and on occasions, especially during the free for all and king of the hill modes, it does becomes a battle of who has the biggest armour and sword rather than one of skill.
Chivalry: Medieval Warfare succeeds in capturing the brutality of an era long gone by and making an often gun dominated genre (the shooter MMO) work just as well if not better with swords, spears and sledgehammers. Whether its a reenactment of Gladiator you’re looking for or just simply a good game to pass the time with then I point your visors towards Chivalry: Medieval Warfare.