Mordhau – Supreme Swordplay and Combat Mechanics Games
Mordhau is tough, violent, beautiful, and doesn’t pull its punches. Despite an intense learning curve that could be better alleviated with more tutorials or better practice tools, its supreme swordplay and combat mechanics eventually outshine any initial frustration. The scale of battle is overwhelming and chaotic, but there’s a definite sense to all the nonsense that, once you uncover it, gives you an incredible rush every time you go toe-to-toe with the enemy–even if you don’t come out the other side intact.
The sun beats down on the battlefield as the war cries of my fellow soldiers ring out. Catapults pelt us from a distance and the giant boulders explode onto the ground around us with a great thud, thinning our numbers before we can reach the contested checkpoint. Those who make it through are greeted by a line of enemies hastily building a blockade, but we tear through them like a hot knife through butter and take the checkpoint in a flurry of steel and blood. As I stand over the decapitated body of a downed enemy, a spear flies out from behind a barrier and catches me unawares, putting me down on the spot with a sickening, meaty crash, before I respawn back at the camp I’d just come from.
This is the bloody brutality of Mordhau, a strategic, punishing and ultimately satisfying first-person multiplayer medieval combat game. You need patience and perseverance to overcome the steep learning curve of its melee mechanics. Far from being a simple hack-and-slasher, Mordhau focuses largely on learning and executing the finer points of melee combat, from footwork and positioning through to timing numerous attack and defensive maneuvers. It feels clunky at first, but once it clicks, it’s brilliant. Timing a riposte–a parry followed up by a quick counter-attack–feels great, and even better if it causes heads to roll. But there are several hours of less-thrilling learning to do first, and despite its attempts at onboarding, the game could do more to help new players get up to speed.
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