Posted on 27 Sep 2016 by L Coulsen

For Honor

The Defence

Developer: Ubisoft Montreal
Publisher: Ubisoft
Genre: Action
Platform: Consoles, PC
Review copy: No
Release date: 14 Feb 2017

The Prosecution

Minimum
Recommended
OS: Windows
CPU: Intel Core i3 3.2 GHz
AMD FX 3.2 GHz
VGA: Nvidia GeForce 660
AMD Radeon HD 6970
RAM: 4 GB
HDD: 40 GB
DirectX: 11
Controller: Full
Mod Support: No
VR: No
FOV Slider: Yes
FPS Lock: 120+
OS: Windows
CPU: Intel Core i5 3.7 GHz
AMD FX 3.9 GHz
VGA: Nvidia GeForce 1060
AMD Radeon RX 380
RAM: 8 GB
HDD: 40 GB
DirectX: 11
Controller: Full
Mod Support: No
VR: No
FOV Slider: Yes
FPS Lock: 120+

In an alternate universe, a three-way war has broken out between old English Knights, Samurai and Viking warriors. That’s about all you really need to know. To put it bluntly, For Honor was the very best Alpha this humble reviewer has ever taken part in. A damn fine looking game that already ran at a rock solid 60fps, with support for resolutions well beyond 1080p and compatible with just about every modern controller under the sun. Which is good, because it’s clearly not intended to be used with a mouse and keyboard. Even with fully rebound keys, it’s just…better with a controller.

The Steam Controller was a bit wonky, but it does work. Though even the brief delay of swiping the right trackpad to change your guard position leaves one at a disadvantage. Thankfully, my Dualshock 4 worked, with correct on screen prompts, right out of the box, which made things a lot more playable and, most importantly, a lot more fun.

Of the six heroes available in the Alpha (hopefully more in the full game) each felt distinct, but similar enough that it becomes little more than familiarising oneself with the various movesets. Though some, such as the Samurai Kensei, were objectively “better”, none felt truly underpowered by comparison. This made switching between them more a matter of personal taste. Though as each hero leveled up independently, it would very quickly become a case of finding the one you liked best and sticking with it. Hopefully, the final release will offset this by having an overall level and adding in the ability to at least swap gear between heroes from the same faction.

Come and 'ave a go if you think you're 'ard enough!

Having said that, even if the different heroes remain independently leveled, the careful balance between skill and character stats ensure that none will ever fall significantly behind, allowing a player to jump to a brand new class and still keep up with seasoned players. There are multiple game modes with both PVE and PVP options, so it’s not too much of a problem to grind out a few levels and grab some new equipment. The 2v2 Brawl mode seemed best for this, as individual rounds rarely lasted more than half a minute, and the amount of EXP awarded at the end of a match was meaty enough to blow through to level five or so in less than half an hour.

It’s difficult to judge how the final game will fair based on an Alpha, but even at this stage there’s already enough of a game there to justify a full price purchase. Only some very minor niggles regarding the responsiveness of shifting between left, right and high guard marred an otherwise superb experience. In fact, the single largest complaint was that the lag compensation clearly favoured those on lower speed connections. Which could be extremely frustrating when you saw not only another player, but AI opponents cutting straight through a clearly well timed guard to layeth the smacketh downeth.

A few other changes that For Honor would benefit…may actually already be planned. For the Alpha, there were four game modes, 1v1 Duel, 2v2 Brawl and a 4v4 with bot armies called Dominion. Each had their appeal, with Dominion being the one that really showed off the game’s full potential. Featuring a pitched battle between two factions (hopefully a full three-way in final release) with three conflict zones that awarded points whilst your faction controlled them. This leads to a great back and forth as you split your attention between taking out enemy heroes, locking down combat zones and farming the AI minions to unlock four levels of feats.

Let me scratch that for you.

Dominion was the only mode that allowed use of feats, and each round reset you to the first level. With the other three opening up as you earned points during a battle. Each of the four layers also had three to choose from, which could be changed between rounds. Covering things like passive buffs to your stamina regeneration, an area effect banner which recovered health for you and allies over time, regaining stamina when killing an opponent, smoke grenades and so. Several were shared between different heroes, though unlocked at different levels, whilst most were unique.

If there were any things that would benefit from being included, larger group sizes and multi stage maps are at the top of the list. Intermittent glitches which showed more than four heroes per team suggest the former is already planned, but the latter is unclear at this stage. Still, even without them, a round of Dominion could last upwards of twenty minutes, so it would be no great loss if it doesn’t turn out that way.

The long and the short of it folks, I’ve already said, For Honor is a great game, and comes with a very strong recommendation.

Comments (5)


Posts: 207
L Coulsen
Posted 09 Oct 2016, 13:54
Will do mate. Just make sure to have a controller on hand, it's a lot more accessible that way

Posts: 124
David Pink
Posted 08 Oct 2016, 20:31
That's good to know, remind me next Beta phase eh L, I'll join in a few games with you :)

Posts: 207
L Coulsen
Posted 07 Oct 2016, 20:07
I'll be getting it fo shizzle. There are more betas coming up before then though

Posts: 124
David Pink
Posted 05 Oct 2016, 15:51
I passed on trying out the short beta and I'm starting to think I should have tried it out, visually, this game looks fantastic! and from what L has mentioned, it was pretty fun too. Perhaps if some of the PJ crew here picks it up, I may just have to join in as well :)

Posts: 9
Michael
Posted 05 Oct 2016, 13:45
This game is something new. I can't wait to play this game with my friends ( ͡º ͜ʖ͡º) No I am just joking. I do not have friends..