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Realistic single-player RPG set in the medieval Europe. Open-world sandbox with period accurate melee combat. Dungeons & no Dragons.
Realistic single-player RPG set in the medieval Europe. Open-world sandbox with period accurate melee combat. Dungeons & no Dragons.
35,384 backers pledged £1,106,371 to help bring this project to life.

Video Update #4: Combat!

Posted by Warhorse Studios (Creator)

Welcome to our fourth video update!

This time we are bringing you something special: twelve minute video about our combat system. Good combat mechanics is at the heart of every RPG and we are very proud of ours. It's based on real-time collision detection and inverse kinematics; technologies that were difficult to use for game-critical mechanics on previous generation hardware. The result is a combat experience that looks and feels believable and natural, yet is not constrained to few sets of canned animations that have to be executed in perfect synchronization. The system seamlessly integrates things like interaction with environments, different heights of opponents or uneven terrain. Our combat is a blend of tactics and timing, skills of the player and stats of the character. But enough words, watch the video:

So how do you like it? Be sure to let us know!

Josh, Alex Dickie, and 282 more people like this update.


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    1. Emirhan Ekşioğlu on

      One thing I wanted to ask is, since this is a first person view game, will you implement a visor system for helmets? If I'm wearing a full helmet, then my sight would be limited. I think that'll add to immersion ^^

    2. Jean-Philippe Barre on

      This is just great, lots of techniques, that sort of game that never gets boring and that you could play over and over.

    3. David W on

      @Cheesey Feet In fact, that's how the German style DID handle defense: Defend with an attack. There's very little blocking just to block in the German school, and most of the time you defend with an action that also attacks your opponent (IE, defending an oberhau with a zwerchhau both to close the line AND attack your opponent's head).

    4. Mladen Mihajlovic on

      Ps: I love the first person view. Feels like I'm there swinging that sword :)

    5. Mladen Mihajlovic on

      Loved this. Not sure if you mentioned it, how will you handle fighting with multiple people? Will they be able to attach simultaneously? Overpower you?

    6. Paal Joachim Romdahl on

      In the combat video there is a lot of attention on first person view. It would be nice showing a rotating angle camera so the player can select gaming angle. As the first person view can in a sense become too intense and I personally like to have a broader view of the character and the actions he/she can perform.

    7. Cheesey Feet on

      I like what was shown in the video but was also a bit disappointed.
      Henry is strong enough to shoot an arrow right through a man's armour, and holds a bow strong enough for him to use his immense strength, even though he is not British, nor does he look incredibly and asymmetrically burly. He shot through a breastplate, and even a helmet. Him and his bow are so strong they can knock a man off his feet, but he is not pushed off his feet in the act of shooting (this could possibly be explained by footing, I don't know).
      "Attack" and "parry" are two distinct actions in this. Hopefully with the inverse kinematics it should be possible to perform a ward and an attack at once, whether by the Victor and Peters or by modders. Attacking and covering at once to avoid double-hits and the afterblow. Keeping the enemy's weapon aside with yours and hitting him at the same time. This can be done because the longsword is long I think.
      They all seem to prefer longpoint/langort/posta longa, but the work is in progress, so I don't know if they're all going to use that one guard most of the time.

    8. chabuhi on

      "If you experience an erection lasting longer than four hours seek medical attention immediately."

      I'm on my way to the hospital.

      Sorry to be crass, but the last three videos have me so excited for this game that I have lost whatever sense of maturity I may once have had.

      This looks incredible, especially at this relatively early stage. Fantastic stuff!

      I hope the third-person view remains an option for combat (I think you said it will) because first person just does not work for me (in any game. It's me, not you.)

    9. Missing avatar

      Jiri Smutek on

      Really nice work guys! Keep going ;)
      Some ideas:
      - difficulty setting of how hard is to play combats - "fully auto" for noobs - just clicking (? probably not an option in this type of game), auto defences by one key + selectable type/place of atacks, fully selectable blocking and attacks as was metioned in comments below
      - Some special feints for AI to overcome "auto defence by holding defence button"? --> If you encounter too good enemy, you going to die; as in real world, no mercy :)
      - Have you ever think about kinect or similar driver to play with? I mean some inreal gestures for attacking/blocking? (like play simulator :D this would be awesome to play as with real sword and shield :DD)
      - implementing effect of injury - some types of attacks/blocks unable to make (hit to left arm - unable to use shield, or two-handed sword), more stamina spent just to stay on legs and hold sword...; in this video it seems like person can get 3 slashes to unprotected body and still staying fresh as at morning :DD

    10. Missing avatar

      Wolf Neumann on

      I would like an advanced options dialog where you can modify some of the combat behaviours (to make it more challenging / hardcore).

      Just some brainstorming:

      - Skill / Level based combat [ on (default) | off ]
      => as mentioned in the video you will be faster than your opponent if your skill is higher, just add an option to disable this behaviour ( == skill level is the same )

      - Autoblock mode [ enabled (default) | disabled ]
      => if it is disabled you would have to trigger the blocking action on time (non permanent blocking by keep pressing a single key)

      - Hardcore block mode [ enabled | disabled (default) ]
      => You have to time your blocking action accordingly (like Autoblock mode disabled) AND choose the direction to block

    11. Prokop Hapala on

      Looks so great. Only thing I worry about is that it would depend much on RPG aspect ( level of your avatar ) rather than on your skill. I hope that somebody will make a pure competitive combat mode without RPG apect. Multiplayer first person fencing, that's my dream. Or at least that there will be enought money for Tournament module.

    12. 'Yngvald' aka HannesFury on

      Anything remotely close to the combat system of Mount&Blade would be astonishingly counter-intuitive, seeing how this game is aiming for realism, not something clonky, over simplified and gimicky. Hopefully, that kind of thing is something of the past.

    13. Missing avatar

      DrRumpy on

      Awesome guys. Keep rocking it!

    14. Lee Gardner on

      Game looks to be coming along very well, keep up the hard work guys : ) Would like to see limbs being chopped of with power attacks especially during large scale battles (Braveheart Style). My favourite weapon of the period would be the good old ball and chain!!!!

    15. Missing avatar

      Nikita Obnosov on

      This looks great, especialy looking forward to fighting armored people with warhammers and the physics of that.

      Can we expect to see Flails?

    16. Missing avatar

      Sebastián Kučkovský on

      Are you planning a limbs cutting off? (Like in chivalry)

    17. Missing avatar

      Alexander on

      @Johannes 'Waldgeist' Rebhan

      Right words. Totaly agreed.

      But, I did my comment as little remark, because we do have just a little videos with combat system, it's an early alpha and we can't judge it properly. My goal is simple - express the opinion in a shallow way to attract some attention in that point of view, that I will be argueing on forum, after Alpha-relise.

      However, mr. Varva has told, that he is interested in the game experience likewise Dark Souls and Mount&Blade. That mean for me, that combat would be quite challenging. Therefore players should to learn something(as player's experience, not the character one), for example the direct-blocking by mouse, to be successful in battle. That means, that I wish to have an opportunity, to change the difficulty of combat to the hardcore if it possible. And game system looks like very variety.

      So, I'm not criticize the system, before I try it, I'm expressing my point of view.

      Btw, it would be very interesting, and devastating to have a quest-line of swordsmanship, where we can meet the Grand Master Johannes Liechtenauer's students(time and place is perfect), and learn. Main things as Vier Blos and Vier Leger, than Meisterhau like might-combo and so on. Especially I'm interested in the elaboration of fencing phrase(playes), as Zorn-ort for a simpe example.

    18. David W on

      Will we have more guards than just pflug? Liechtenauer advocated constantly shifting between guard positions to disguise where your openings are, and where your attack may come from (a lot of practitioners of the German school today seem to overlook that, and stay in vom tag all the time).

    19. Missing avatar

      Viktoras Saulis on

      It looks really realistic, but it seems that a lot people want directional blocking, which need more skill of course but when you manage it you have much more satisfaction :) for instance when i first played Chivalry i thought wtf! It was so hard to kill and not to die, but once i learned it became one of my all time favorite game, mouse dragging to increase or decrease speed, directional timing based blocking, feints, kicks, multi directional slashes, stabs overheads, jumps, crouches and so on. I believe it is the most advance combat system to date, but maybe it is too difficult for masses, so maybe one button block is a wise choice...

    20. Helena on

      Nice video. I can't comment all that much on the realism as I don't know enough about the subject, but it certainly looks more realistic than pretty much anything else I've seen. What I'm really looking forward to, though, is the video on AI systems and routines. I've never seen a game that really manages to pull these off in a realistic fashion, so I'm keen to see Warhorse's take.

    21. Jakub Adam on

      So far the characters seemed little bit immortal. I hope this will be changed (or at least possible to change in settings) as in real combat every strike counts, injures you, weakens you and usually by 2 or 3 hits you are probably dead. :)

    22. Missing avatar

      Baudolino05 on

      I played M&B II nonstop for like one year. Of course I like its combats, but I'm under the impression here that people don't get that directional blocking works in its battle system just because its combats are way slower than Kingdom Come's.

    23. IamHowie on

      Really impressive update. The content you mention is so vast this game is likely going to be the biggest game ever made.

      The combat looks pretty awesome so far, but what bothered me was the archery combat. I hope you will in the future implement real projectile physics like Sniper Elite. The problem here is probably the lack of vision depth through a monitor so accessing distance might require some form of scale or meter of some sort?

    24. Missing avatar

      Gabriel Simon on

      By the way... one OTHER last thought... :)
      Damage to armor and maybe pieces falling off from blows would simply be epic. The joy of smashing the armor off a fully plated knight would be a grand battle no doubt! Seems like there is some basis for this already in the ability to attack certain areas of your opponents body. If you could add in location-based injuries to your opponents (like perhaps you could inure your opponents leg) that would also be a very cool dynamic that would make the combat more tactical and strategic and would also make armor pieces in those areas more necessary and beneficial! Cheers again!

    25. Missing avatar

      Gabriel Simon on

      One more thought haha!
      In addition to making blocking a more skill based directional action, the difficulty would increase dramatically when two people are attacking you since you would have to be quickly moving between both of their attacks at once. Again this is possible in Mount and Blade and works excellent! It becomes very difficult to fight more than one opponent but it is still doable and having solid armor and blocking skill could help make it more accessible. Cheers again!

    26. Missing avatar

      Gabriel Simon on

      Just a quick follow up on how Mount and Blade combat works;
      You hold down block but then you can move the block in the direction you wish to try and block an attack from that angle. So if your opponent tries to do an overhanded strike while you are holding block you would have to move up to actually block the attack from that angle. Frankly, that is my favorite system for blocking and parrying so far in any game series.
      Note: Although it is an old game and not actually an action game; the first two Thief games actually had great sword mechanics. Blocking was based on timing of your opponents attacks. You could also use power attacks that could stun your opponents. I hope there will be an option to use power attacks to try and smash through your opponents guards!
      Again cheers!

    27. Missing avatar

      Baudolino05 on

      @Anders T.N: Actually is a proven fact that the momentum of an arrow shot from a medieval bow was really something. Enough to damage your internal organs even without piercing your armor. So, blocking an arrow with your shield should deplete your stamina too.

    28. Missing avatar

      Gabriel Simon on

      Hey guys looks great! Looks like the best sword combat I've seen in any game. Kudos!
      Constructive Feedback: Being able to simply hold down a block button and you can parry anything is too easy and simply not intense enough. I greatly disliked this feature in Assassins Creed for example where you were always invincible at any time.
      If you can find a way to incorporate directional blocking like Mount and Blade that would be awesome! It seems like you have an element like that already in place in that you can try and trick your opponent which angle you will attack from. I think it is only fair if your opponents can attack from multiple angles but it would require some timing and skill to block.
      Also, if stats could factor in to the skill of blocking like your sword skills and stuff that would be great. So that way although some skill is necessary for blocking, you can also make it an easier process by gaining skill in blocking. Perhaps it could increase the amount of angles you can defend at once or something in that manner...
      Either way, looks great and I look forward to playing the alpha and hope to give whatever useful feedback I can! cheers

    29. Missing avatar

      Boris Vrbka on

      Combat looks really great and feels real .... but there should definitely be some dodging involved, not just blocking...

    30. Missing avatar

      August the Bold on

      I agree with @Stormcry. I like that M&B allows to choose a defense style between more or less hardcore variants.

    31. Anders T.N

      I assume you will have to move your shield into the path of an arrow in order to stop it? Unlike blocking a sword which can require stamina, blocking an arrow should be about guessing the trajectory as moving the shield around wont require that much stamina compared to blocking a heavy sword strike. Do you plan to include an ability allowing the player to fire arrows in a ballistic fashion (a.k.a. volley shot)?

    32. Stormcry on

      Please make it like in M&B:W so the defence button is blocking for a short while, so you still have to use your own skill to block at the right time. Thanks.

    33. Missing avatar

      Baudolino05 on

      @Robert Silesius: "A button to automatically block seems like "simple mode" when you have inverse kinetics. Why not a button to hold out your sword, and then move it to the appropriate angle to actually stop the incoming blade?"

      As long as stamina is an important factor and parrying is an energy consuming activity, this won't be a problem. See Demon's/Dark Souls. If you can block how many hits you want without depleting your stamina bar, well: this's gonna be a huge problem.

    34. Missing avatar

      Vojtech Lacina on

      It looks very good, the movement of player is very real, good job!

    35. Missing avatar

      Robert Silesius on

      A button to automatically block seems like "simple mode" when you have inverse kinetics. Why not a button to hold out your sword, and then move it to the appropriate angle to actually stop the incoming blade?

    36. Theobeau:OOoE\Mad man with a box/Exiled on

      Very interesting update; the use of motion capture and focus on realistic combat mechanics and movement certainly explains the strong preference for a 1st person only.

      More generally, the video updates have been fascinating and it is great to see the differences in style, focus and perspective from non Anglosphere gaming devs.


    37. Ian Williams on

      Hey guys I love the combat. I'm really excited to see it first hand. Also I wanted to compliment you guys on your video presence. All of you make understanding the game mechanics and your current development progress very clear, interesting and you even add some humor to the videos! I love it all thanks for the awesome updates!

    38. Tomáš Procházka on

      I would prefer the possibility to choose the attack and block direction via the combination of mouse button and the direction of mouse movement as in m&b warband. Here I understand the block direction is automatic and what about the attack direction? At least that would be great. Anyway if its different here doesnt matter much, there is m&b bannerlord coming for this purpose and the KC:D combat system I beleive will be interesting to try.

    39. Baron von La Monte on

      The only reason I don't use a sword in RPG is the combat systems are rubbish, now I will be able to use swords, brilliant video, thanks to Victor, you did a great job.

    40. Missing avatar

      Jussi Järvinen on

      Each video update makes me more hyped about the game. Keep up the good work.

    41. Missing avatar

      Wolfgang the Unholy on

      @Ninja: I agree, moving backwards or dodging should indeed be possible. Also some kind of wrestling moves are well known are known to be historic here!!
      On top of that kicking, ellbow-bashing, or hitting with the pommel of the sword would be nice additions!!

    42. Ninja on

      agree dodge, run and all that stuff mast be in hak&slash

    43. Ninja on

      thats prty nice, but i think of you do more speed++ in battle it will be good

    44. Manisan on

      Awesome Video Update but where is the cute Dog in this Video ? ;)

    45. Missing avatar

      Tomáš M. on

      Absolutely amazing and great work!

      This brings me a question: Are you planning also some dodge mechanism as a posibility to avoid being hurt along with block and parry, for example as a skill or perk? It could bring some other possibilities even for counterattacks and could make the fight more complex.

    46. Khalashnikovf on

      So far so good. Way to go Warhorse. This will be some fine piece of game!

    47. Missing avatar

      Pickpocket32 on

      Combat system looks good at the moment and can't wait for the next update :)

    48. Andy Linea of Sin - DOoD on

      This is a really cool update!! Less enemies, more complex combat, I like it! So it won't be a brainless massacre but much more realistic and tactical.
      What about healing? It would be nice to have more difficulties and no instant healing potions in hard mode or at all. Ok, here are some compromise to be made, one cannot lay in hospital for weeks.. :-D
      Much better: don't use red globes or whatever to show the remaining life energy (or make it possible to shut it down), but some graphical effects with blood, wounds, or shaking hands, sight weakness, laboring breath, groaning, slower movement. So it would be more difficult to win while wounded.

    49. Filip Nowak on

      It's amazing! I cannot wait to try it! Great work guys.

    50. Missing avatar

      Baudolino05 on

      As long as stamina is factor, this will be a pretty interesting combat system. I have a question, though: how exactly does targeting work?