Chivalry II Early Impressions
I never played Chivalry. Or Mordhau. Or really any of the other multiplayer medieval combat games. With the exception of Mount and Blade: Warband, I suppose — but even there M&B was primarily a single-player experience for me. (Someone wake me if a co-op mode gets added, though!)
It’s very likely that without the August Humble Choice bundle, I would’ve happily carried on that way.
I’m glad that the bundle did include it, as in the couple of hours I’ve given it so far, I’ve enjoyed it and look forward to spending a bit more time with it outside of the need to write this impressions piece, too!
The tutorial does an awesome job of onboarding you to the ins and outs of the combat system. It will teach you the basic attacks, then how to combo them, then how they interact with blocks, counters, feints, jabs, dodges — all that good stuff.
I came out of the tutorial not feeling the immediate need to then also go look up a ‘How to Play’ video.
That’s not to say jumping from there to games with players isn’t a big deal. You’ll certainly feel the difference, especially those who’ve played long enough to be counter-gods or recover from a hit with a jab, negating your combo speed advantage.
But the best thing, in my opinion, and the most surprising, was that I didn’t feel like you needed to bring in people on voice comms and play as a coordinated team to have any fun.
I’m sure you could do that and have a great deal of fun, but it didn’t at all feel mandatory.
The objectives are generally in a confined enough area that your team will be in generally the right location, and as you charge in (you literally leave spawn in a charging state), you can determine where best to angle yourself to add the most value to the fight at hand.
There are different classes (and even sub-classes!) and weapon types you can kit yourself out with as you progress your account as well, I didn’t explore this too deeply, being happy with the Footman class I started with, who walked around with a giant, no-nonsense 2H weapon and the ability to charge up and throw med-kits every so often, or to put a small spike barricade down.
I saw you could also be a Knight, or an Archer (that could be fun) or a Vanguard, each with their own starting weapon styles which further develop into subclasses to further specialise.
Maps tend to take the form of an aggressor and a defender, and they remain in those roles for the duration of the map. The defender only has to win once, at any stage, to ‘win’ the map. However, any remaining time on the clock when the aggressor finishes an objective is added to the next objective, and so on and so on — so can become a bit of a steamroll.
In one of the games, I played we did manage to win as defenders on the second objective, so the round was over in under 7 minutes.
The last defence round seems to favour the defenders a little more, and in one round we lost (but came achingly close, ~16 seconds left on the clock) and lasted for over 25 minutes.
All-in-all, an enjoyable game and worth considering the August Humble Choice bundle for if the concept of swinging medieval weapons around with warcries such as, ‘It’s me first day!’ (presumably, just until you have a few more ranks behind you) appeals, then jump in and grab it. This one alone provides enough value to the bundle to make it worthwhile!