Black Eye Games is about to unleash the pre-alpha of the upcoming free MMORPG Gloria Victis and gave us some juicy details on the real-time combat system. Inspired by Mount & Blade, combat in Gloria Victis will break MMORPG conventions, using a Non Target-Based Combat System where players control exactly where, when and how they wish to execute their attacks and parries. Here are the official details along with some pics that show different phases of combat, straight from Black Eye Games:
Non Target-Based System
One of the conventions of games these days is the delegation of combat to a simple mouse click whereby the player would then proceed to watch his character hack away at an enemy requiring the player only to once in awhile mash the keyboard when skills are off cooldown. This is a convention that Gloria Victis will be breaking in regards to combat with our Non Target-Based Combat System.
So what does this term that we use to describe our combat system really mean? It means that the player will have to control how the character fights rather than delegating the fight process to the computer by a simple click. The player would have to swing in the right direction or you would be slashing nothing but air, the player would have to attack when the opponent’s guard is down in order to make a hit connect. Conversely the player would also have to block at the right time and in the right direction to protect themselves and also move around agilely to dodge blows and frustrate the efforts of the attacker. In this combat system, the reflexes and skill as a player play quite a major role in the outcome of fights. However, there are things that players can employ to overcome their opponents both in terms of offence and defence which brings me to my next topic – Techniques.
If the combat in Gloria Victis was only restricted to normal directional attacks, combat would be quite a dull affair, so to spice combat up and add to the dynamic quality of combat there will be skills which one can learn. However, they are not skills in the sense of the run of the mill game which is why I have called them instead “Techniques” . They operate in the sense that any person in real life can pick up a sword in real life and be able to slash around with it, but it takes training to be proficient and someone to teach specific techniques to. Techniques also require the player to be facing the right direction and be at the right distance in order to connect with your opponent, techniques too can be blocked but albeit with greater difficulty but should not be too big of a problem for people with superb reflexes. As opposed to cooldown for skills, we are currently working towards “conditions” as being the restriction on techniques, for example a quick counter-slash technique only executable after successfully parrying or a series of fast slashes to overwhelm the opponent when they are staggered. However for the Pre-Alpha, techniques will for now operate on a cooldown basis. Techniques in no way replaces normal attacks, the player is expected to use them to compliment their basic attacks, for example a player could use a left normal attack and execute a right quick slash technique effectively creating the combo “Left Feint”.
As realism is one of the greatest considerations when developing Gloria Victis, we feel that it is unrealistic that a character be able to swing a heavy sword all day long without tiring. As a result stamina, the management of it would be vital in the success of a fight. Taking any actions such as running, striking, parrying or simply holding your weapon up in the air in preparation for an attack or anticipation of parrying consumes stamina. A character who runs out of stamina in the middle of a fight would be in quite a predicament, resulting in having his sword easily batted away by his opponent and a swift yet gruesome death. Stamina consumption varies depending on playing style, for instance a player that chooses lighter armour would have a slower draining stamina whereas a more heavily armoured character would have less stamina as the weight of the armour will have a negative effect on dexterity. A player might choose to gamble the outcome of a fight in a flurry of blows expending most of their stamina in the opening portions of the fight in the hope of overwhelming their foe, or a player might choose to play slow and steady, parrying only the necessary blows and waiting for their foe to make a mistake or leave their guard down for a killing blow. Whatever the choice, managing stamina is a vital part of combat, using techniques for instance consumes more stamina than normal attacks due to the intricacies compared to the former.
So in summary, the combat in Gloria Victis is very dynamic and attempts to follow the principle of egalitarianism, from armour choice to fighting style it is completely up to the player to choose, for players to discover who they are in terms of fighting and equipment. A truly dynamic system of combat both inside and outside of fights where you truly get to define yourself depending on what suits you.