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Vikings and knights and samurai, oh my!

That’s right, all three are going to duke it out in gloriously bloody warfare in Ubisoft Montreal’s upcoming “historical” game For Honor. Expect decapitations, mutilation and general organ-displacement!

For Honor was first revealed at E3 last year via teaser trailer and it looked spectacular. The competitive third-person melee game looks like it’s going to be a veritable combination of strategy, team play and speed, injected with a healthy dose of intense close-quarters combat. While we haven’t gotten a solid date yet, players can expect For Honor to be released on the PS4, Xbox One and PC later this year.

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In For Honor, you find yourself among the company of towering Vikings, stalwart knights and esteemed samurai in gruelling feuds not unlike The Battle of Castle Black from Game of Thrones.

Avoid flurries of arrows and colossal catapult projectiles flying in from every direction as you work with teammates to claim victory for your clan and uphold your code of honor. Hack and slash a bloody path through your opponents using the innovative Art of Battle system, feeling the power and impact behind every calculated strike.

The unique Art of Battle system is For Honor’s innovative control scheme. Players are tasked with direct control over their weapons; flicking and holding the right stick in different directions will let you pick which side to attack or block during duels, which makes for high-pressure encounters against opponents. That most likely means that the system requires skill to use, so button-mashing is out of the question if you want to win duels.

We’ve also been promised several multiplayer modes, including one called Dominion Mode that was unveiled in a gameplay video. In Dominion Mode, players are split into 2 teams of 4 in a scramble to dominate the battlefield by taking control of 3 strategic control zones. A zone can be claimed by pushing back the enemy off the area. Fully eliminated teams automatically lose the battle (in Dominion Mode, at least), so a lot of pressure is placed on surviving heroes to turn the tide of battle to their favor.

Maps feature high spots which players can use as vantage points for finding potential targets, and just plain ol’ checking on how things are going.

Visually, it looks like For Honor isn’t in bad shape. By the looks of it, both male and female warriors will be available for players to use; as of now, though, it’s unknown if picking a certain gender will affect stats and whatnot. Additionally, we’ve been told that both weapons and armor are going to be customizable to make them unique and suit various playstyles. And from what we’ve seen in the trailer, For Honor will feature several environments. The ones we got a glimpse of include a gloomy forest, a classic castle courtyard and verdant valleys and mountains. We’re hoping for even more!

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But of course the main draw here is the showdown between the three different factions a la Deadliest Warrior. The game isn’t even out yet, but players are already picking sides and swearing their allegiances. For Honor will feature three different factions to choose from: The Chosen (samurai), The Warborn (Vikings) and The Legion (knights).

The Chosen are the wayward warriors from the East. These nomadic samurai have survived the harsh deserts using skill and focus, and are looking for a new homeland to finally settle down into. The Oni are the warriors who represent this faction- with lightning-quick speed granted by their classic Japanese katana and light armor, and deadly mastery, they’re the go-to class for players who like their warriors quick on their feet.

The Warborn are Vikings who have sailed in from across the Boiling Sea to raid and drive out the unworthy from their ancestral lands, much like some of the Nords from Skyrim. The hulking Raiders lead the charge for this faction. With a playstyle that puts emphasis on strength and brutality above all else, the Raiders make use of the classic round Viking shield for both offense and defense, as well as a razor-sharp gladius to dispatch pesky opponents.

The Legion is composed of knights dead-set on defending what they have claimed as theirs from invaders. Led by the charismatic Wardens, they are the versatile jack-of-all-trades of the roster, good with both offense and defense reinforced with plate armor and chain-mail. If you’re looking for a balanced character, then you might want to start decapitating heads and taking names using a Warden.

All three have individual strengths and weaknesses, and abilities unique to their faction, so players will have no problems choosing one to suit their combat style.

Ubisoft Montreal has also recently announced that a single-player campaign is in the works and will be one of the key features of the game when it comes out.

And if you sign up for Ubisoft Montreal’s For Honor Backstage Program, you get access to neat goodies like exclusive content, interactions with the dev team and even a chance to play the game first!

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