Over the past few weeks, I’ve talked at length about the multiplayer component to Ubisoft’s melee action title For Honor. I think at this point you all have a pretty good idea on how I feel about it and how it plays. So in an effort to not repeat myself or continue to talk about the same content, I’m taking a different approach this time around.
One thing that I find somewhat interesting is that not many people are talking about the single player campaign all that much. I know that the big draw for this game is the multiplayer, but after spending a good amount of time with the single player content, I feel like it deserves some attention as well.
I won’t lie, I wasn’t expecting too much, but the campaign was not only a good introductory tool for a number of heroes, but has some really cool moments as well. Let’s discuss!
The story ultimately revolves around the brutal warlord Apollyon, who leads a band of mercenary Knights known as the Blackstone Legion. After relative peace in the land, it’s her goal to reignite the flames of war by eliminating those who would champion peace, and replace them with warmongers and “wolves” as she puts it. She starts to put an elaborate plan in place to have a domino effect on the land, bringing all three factions head to head to head. You’ll be playing through this entire timeline starting with the Knights and moving to the Vikings and finishing with the Samurai to experience how it begins and how it all ends.
Going in, the biggest expectation that I had was that the campaign would be a glorified tutorial, sending you, the player, into the shoes of each class to see what they play like before pushing you over to the meatier multiplayer portions. I was delighted to find that isn’t the case.
Instead, I found a well crafted experience complete with various objectives, major battles, and cut scenes. The story typically centered around one of the heroes of the faction you were currently playing as, telling their story and perspective during Apollyon’s war games.
What I appreciated is that the gameplay didn’t shoehorn itself into being a constant 1v1 style duel fest, but it made you felt like you were part of a bigger conflict. Yes, there is plenty of dueling to be had, but you’re also fighting alongside grunts, other heroes, and trying to overcome various objectives to push the story along.
For Honor also features a number of impressive moments from the campaign as well. I won’t spoil everything, but players will be taking part in a massive siege, using a battering ram to break through a heavily fortified castle. Boss battles are also sprinkled in, bringing with them intense moments, and loads of tension.
The three chapters each have 5 or 6 missions, so it’s not super lengthy, but it’s definitely not as short as it could have been. In addition, each mission has a number of hidden collectibles to find along with “observables” which provide additional context into characters, the world, or motivations. For those looking for a greater challenge, For Honor also contains a number of different difficulty settings including Realistic which removes the HUD completely and dying means game over for good. I’ll be honest here and say that I don’t think that’s something I’ll be trying anytime soon, but it’s certainly an interesting addition.
As I previously mentioned, the three chapters really focus on a particular hero from each faction: Warden, Raider, and Orochi. Thankfully, specific chapters also have you play as the other heroes as well, which not only gave you a chance to try out a completely different character, but the game goes out of its way to give you some tips for playing that hero as well.
For as long as the campaign was, four heroes were ultimately left out for some reason. Players hoping to get some hands on time with the Knight’s Conqueror or the Viking Berserker are out of luck. It gets worse for the Samurai faction as both the Nobushi and Shugoki don’t get any time in the spotlight either, as 90% of that chapter is played as the Orochi.
For the majority of people, the biggest aspect to For Honor is with the multiplayer, I get it and totally respect that. However, I’d caution those folks to not sleep on the single player campaign, as it’s better than you probably think it is and feels like a dedicated campaign rather than a glorified tutorial mode. It’s clear that Ubisoft put a lot of time and love into it and in my opinion, it’s definitely worth checking out. And hey, at the very least, you’ll unlock new stuff for the multiplayer. It’s a win-win either way.