Well, Chivalry 2 was an experience to say the least. I wasn’t sure what I was getting into, having never played the original title Chivalry: Medieval Warfare. Between Fortnite, Call of Duty and World of Warcraft I have plenty of PVP experience, but nothing prepared me for this. I enjoyed myself, but I’m not sure I should have.
The game starts with a tutorial, which I would definitely recommend completing. I thought I’d head in and smash buttons à la Super Smash Bros, but it turns out there is actually quite a bit of strategy involved. Between different types of attacks, defences, and dodges, you’ll also find yourself able to perform dangerous combos that will leave your enemy’s bleeding, literally. The tutorial actually got so tired of me failing the combos that it passively aggressively suggested I move on to the next step, so they aren’t for amateurs.
Once you’re able to head into the game, it’s time to design your character. There are four classes, Knight, Vanguard, Archer and Footman, and two factions, the Agatha Knights and the Mason Order, plus the Free for All. The nice thing about the design feature is that you can design each class from each faction individually, meaning you can design 12 separate characters.
The options, however, are limited and remind me a little of the old Nintendo 64 Wrestling character designs, but at least there are SOME options. It doesn’t seem like they put much effort into the female characters, with most of them still resembling the male ones, but again, at least they added them in and gave us a choice. I suppose not many female knights were all that glamorous, so I really can’t complain.
“There is no safe place, and you must always be on guard [with Chivalry 2] .”
Once you head into battle, Chivalry 2 spares no blood splatter. When you hop into a match you will end up in a pile of people, no matter which mode you choose. The 40-player mode leaves you in a team of 20 fighting another 20, and even as the smallest mode, it is chaotic. The 64-player mode, you can imagine, is even messier, with danger at every turn. I tried my best to stay in a group with my team, but it was never successful. Free-for-All, however, leaves you regularly backstabbed and surprised at every turn. There is no safe place, and you must always be on guard. Needless to say, I died. A lot.
What happens when you die? You bleed. What happens when you kill? They bleed. There is a pattern here. The game devs must have really liked the colour red, because the gore was no joke here. Every strike leaves a trail of crimson behind it. And if that wasn’t enough, you can mangle the bodies after they land. Heads fly, arms are lost, and you can even use limbs as weapons.
When you think of a game full of gore, you think grime, fear and horror. But this game goes the complete opposite direction. Yes, it’s messy, but Chivalry 2 doesn’t take itself seriously. Emotes help lighten the mood, including a battle-cry that sounds like something from Monty Python and The Holy Grail. I was half expecting to hear “It’s just a flesh wound” when a leg was launched into the air. The voice acting occasionally reminded me of some comedic characters in Fable as well. You’re covered in blood, but still laughing half of the time, it’s all a bit manic really.
This game will not be winning awards for “best” anything, but Chivalry 2 definitely knows how to show you a good time. The gore is plentiful, the laughs are many and you will leave the game with a smile on your face. If you go into the game with the right attitude, you will come out a winner, even if you’re limbless on the ground.