For Honor, Sniper Elite 4, Halo Wars 2 and more.
WE REVIEW THE LATEST BIG-RELEASE AND INDIE GAMES ON PC AND CONSOLES, STARTING WITH THE FANTASY MULTIPLAYER GAME FOR HONOR.
UBISOFT DELIVERS A CALM, CONSIDERED AND ARTFUL HACK AND SLASHER. PC, PS4, XO | $99.95 | www.forhonor.com A CURSORY LOOK at screenshots suggests For Honor is yet another stock standard grizzly action game, but it’s a bit smarter than your average hackfest. Indeed, while there is much hacking and slashing to be had in Ubisoft’s new multiplayer-focused title, the game relies heavily on tactical hand-to-hand combat, demanding both precision and close attention to the movements and intentions of your opponent.
First things first: For Honor is a multiplayer-focused game, but there is a single-player campaign, which does a decent job of both driving home the combat’s intricacies while spinning a batshit crazy but nonetheless enjoyable yarn. The enemies you’ll face come in two general categories, including the minions you can smite without a second thought, through to the tougher enemies you’ll need to engage in more tense combat. The latter is where the meat of the game’s novelty lies, and it’s why For Honor feels more like a fighting game — think Dark Souls crossed with SoulCalibur — than it does anything else. Oh, and as for the “batshit crazy” angle, you can play as a Knight, a Viking or a Samurai in this game — stupid if history is your bag, but excellent if variety is more important to you.
Once you’ve finished the singleplayer mode in about 6–8 hours, the multiplayer is where the rest of your time, nay life, will be spent. Dominion, Deathmatch and Duels are the main modes, and all have their strengths: the first is a point capture mode with four human players on each team, augmented by the aforementioned minions. Deathmatch is what that name implies, while Duels are, arguably, the most fun you’ll have in multiplayer. Indeed, the 1v1 duels are among the most stripped back and intense scraps I’ve had in a multiplayer game since Dark Souls, sharpening the game’s combat into fraught psychological warfare between you and NoScopeBro204 from Warrnambool (yes, For Honor has local servers).
There’s a faction-based meta game draped over these PvP modes, but the game is still too young to judge whether it’ll prove engrossing or superfluous. In fact, much like Ubisoft’s Rainbow Six Siege (and, we suppose, many other multiplayer-focused titles), the success of this game will depend on how dedicated its userbase is, and how well Ubisoft supports it. At launch, it’s easy to get a game and For Honor is a joy to play, but whether or not the same could be said in six months’ time or a year is yet to be seen.
Assuming For Honor builds a passionate userbase, it’s a unique hobby game with a lot of potential. We hope it shines.