For Honor is a sluggish test of your patience

A scene from For Honor, Ubisoft's attempt to make an epic fighting game.
A scene from For Honor, Ubisoft's attempt to make an epic fighting game.

What do you get when you mix a first person shooter with elements of a fighting game? Something not quite as good as either.

For Honor is certainly bold in taking a new direction but it can't help but get bogged down in a sluggish test of your patience.

Initially, battling as a Viking seems like the coolest thing ever, but the melee combat system eventually becomes a tiresome war of attrition. Players can match each other's stances to block and parry, while finding an opening to land blows.

Though the mechanics tick the box of "easy to pick up, hard to master", there's not enough satisfaction in learning to keep going.

A good fighting game teaches by precision and error, but For Honor can seem quite random. It often feels like a blow will connect despite matching the blocking stance to the attack. There's simply not enough depth to warrant an investment in mastering the system.

Domination was the most enjoyable mode, in which players capture and hold zones while hordes of NPCs charge at one another. Players can plough through the front with quick attacks sending bodies flying.

The combat becomes a bit more interesting here, as players will often find themselves outnumbered and forced to weigh up the chances of fighting two on one, or running away. There's something quite heroic about going down while fighting against three other players. It's where the gloves come off and desperation reigns.

Domination sees the game become more akin to a first person shooter as players run across a large map to complete a team objective rather than straight up axe on blade fighting.

A cursory story mode basically functions as an extended tutorial, but is helping in introducing the player to each different class and play style.

The online matchmaking was barely functional during my time with the game which is a big problem when For Honor is designed to be played with others.

Though this will no doubt be fixed in a upcoming patch, it's an unfortunate blight on my experience.


Platforms: Xbox One, PC, PS4
Rating: R16
Verdict: Not enough glory in honour

- NZ Herald

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