Chivalry led the charge for medieval-themed first-person team arena fighters, a genre which now includes the likes of Mordhau and War of the Roses.
But Chivalry was the major driver behind this genre; its success and arena setting showed that there was a market for these kinds of exciting multiplayer games. One of the things that set Chivalry apart was its arcade-like gameplay, while many of its competitors were attempting to push the degree of realism in their games.
Chivalry II and closed beta announcement
In the closed beta announcement trailer, Chivalry II looks like a larger, more refined version of its predecessor, and the developers talked a little bit about what they plan to add to the game. It seems like Tripwire’s goals for Chivalry II are to make the game bigger and more focused on team-based combat and objectives.
One legitimate criticism levied against the first Chivalry was the way games usually devolved to a series of small fights, and there wasn’t nearly as much of a medieval feel to the combat as players might expect from the theme. While melee weapons were always the focus, it always seemed a bit too easy to just run in and start swinging.
Of course, anyone who continued to play Chivalry beyond its initial release will know that the game’s scene developed significantly over time. Players eventually developed strategies and tactics for combat that made fighting a skilled player a terrifying experience.
Shifting the game more towards widespread teamfights might take away some of this experience, but it’s likely that Chivalry II will still feature plenty of smaller game modes for players to enjoy.
The medieval arena genre
Chivalry, much like the other entries in the genre, share many similarities with the Mount and Blade series’ multiplayer game modes. Both operate on a similar directional attack system, and feature massive teams fighting with primitive weapons.
However, Mount and Blade’s multiplayer always felt like a game mode added on to the game’s sprawling single player experience. Chivalry offered a more refined arcade-like experience, while War of the Roses, released around the same time, focused much more on creating a realistic medieval battlefield. Unfortunately, War of the Roses was never able to make its experience as fun or exciting as Chivalry - a major reason why few remember it today.
The more recently released Mordhau has seen incredible success, and seems to strike a balance between the arcade feel of Chivalry and the brutal reality of War of the Roses. Mordhau similarly shifts the focus towards team fights, and coordinated teams are able to find much more success than disorganized mobs.
Players curious to figure out where exactly Chivalry II will fall on this spectrum, will be able to test it out if they get into the closed beta set for March 26th-29th. Pre-purchasers will be given guaranteed access to the closed beta on PC.