Sunday, December 16, 2012

Sleep In Heavenly Peace...

Charlotte Bacon, 6
Daniel Barden, 7
Olivia Engel, 6
Josephine Gay, 7
Ana M. Marquez-Greene, 6
Dylan Hockley, 6
Madeleine F. Hsu, 6
Catherine V. Hubbard, 6
Chase Kowalski, 7
Jesse Lewis, 6
James Mattioli, 6
Grace McDonnell, 7
Emilie Parker, 6
Jack Pinto, 6
Noah Pozner, 6
Caroline Previdi, 6
Jessica Rekos, 6
Avielle Richman, 6
Benjamin Wheeler, 6
Allison N. Wyatt, 6
Mary Sherlach, 56
Victoria Soto, 27
Anne Marie Murphy, 52
Lauren Rousseau, 30
Dawn Hochsprung, 47
Rachel Davino, 29

Sunday, December 9, 2012

What I Think of Chivalry: Medieval Warfare

Have you ever been given a gift that you wish you hadn't received, but you're thankful anyways and try to enjoy the gift only to get super frustrated and now you want to somehow smack the gift giver? Well a kind hearted friend wanted to share the fun he was having with Chivalry and decided to gift me a copy, and believe me there are times I wish he hadn't.

Chivalry is a multiplayer first person melee combat game built on the Unreal engine so it's pretty and quite unique. It is also broken, flawed and at times seems highly unbalanced, yet it has its moments that make the game incredible. Unfortunately for me those times do not happen very much.

There are four classes - Archer, Man-At-Arms, Vanguard and Knight. There are a small number of maps and includes your standard multiplayer game types - FFA, TDM, Team Objective, King of the Hill and Last Man Standing.

Each class must choose a primary, secondary and special weapon. Everyone starts with three primary and secondary weapons they can choose and from what I can tell there are six of each that can be unlocked by accruing a set number of kills with each.

Before I delve into the bad of Chivalry, I must confess that there is still information that I do not know. There appears to be no sort of manual for this game so some of what I might say could be answered by having one, something to keep in mind.

So what is broken and flawed about Chivalry you may ask? I think this a great time for some bullet points!

  • Key bindings - a small patch supposedly fixed key bindings, but all it seemed to do was change some of them without changing the on screen prompts. Example: Use changed to I, still says E on screen. All commands must be bound to something and can't be left blank and you can accidentally have two commands bound to the same key. Example: Wanted to bind crouch to C since normal games do that which meant that war cry would be unbound, instead the game put both commands as C.
  • Level system - yep, just like every other multiplayer game Chivalry has a level system. With other games gaining levels gives the player something for earning those levels. Not Chivalry. Seems the only thing levels represent is that a player has spent far too much time playing this game, cause they do nothing else.
  • Weapon stats - each weapon has three stats: damage, speed and reach listed as percentages. There's even a detailed info screen that gives the percentages of primary, secondary and special. So what are the percentages based on? Is there some sort of rock, paper, scissors thing going on? The lack of information makes the percentages kind of arbitrary.
  • Team Objective - It's the mode I tend to play most with any online game. In those other games each side will rotate who is for example the attacker and the defender. In Chivalry each map has a predetermined attacker and defender. With so few maps it would have been nice to have each side to attack and defend. There's also a timer to complete objectives, what that amount is I have no idea.
  • Combat - My biggest gripe and I think the games best feature is the combat. It's unique, it's fast and brutal, and it's the most frustrating thing to experience. There are three attacks: stab, slash and overhand smash. These attacks can be blocked and parried by keeping the center of your screen on the tip of the enemies weapon. It's a neat mechanic. Unfortunately one can just circle strafe around while spamming left mouse button, or they aim high and spam over hand or aim low and spam stab. There is a finesse and skill to the combat that is extraordinary if played right, when on a server with 30 other players however, it just turns into a chaotic mess of LMB spam.
  • Combat part II - Balance is fubar. Man-At-Arms have weapons with the shortest reach, lowest armor but are the fastest. Vanguard has moderate armor and speed with primary weapons that have long reach and secondary weapons with a short reach and no shield. The Knight is the slowest with the most armor, primary weapons with long reach and can use a shield with their secondary weapons. What this all means is that the long weapons are king of the battlefield and Knights are the uber sauce on that field. I like playing the MAA for the speed and shield, but I tend to get one shot quite often.
So if this game is broken and flawed how can it be so fun? It's unique and different from other multiplayer games which tend to be of the shooter variety. It's a gorgeous game that one minute can be controller throwing frustrating and in an instant become the most awesome thing you've seen. Weapon movement is slow, but character movement is very twitchy and timing is everything in Chivalry. On occasion I get it right and it is glorious! I just hope the devs continue to support Chivalry and patch up some of the brokenness with the game.