Hands-On: Tales of Glory Wants To Be The Ultimate Medieval Battle Simulator
Two of my favorite PC games are Chivalry: Medieval Warfare and Mount & Blade (both Warband and the original) so consider me excited when I saw Tales of Glory for the first time. With a heavy focus on first-person melee combat among an assortment of knights wielding weapons like pikes and swords and spears, it looks like the recipe for one of VR’s most exhilarating titles yet.
We’ve seen a ton of VR games that focus on small-scale combat, such as 1v1 dueling or exploring a dungeon to fight a few enemies here and there, but there aren’t a whole lot of VR games that put you on the battlefield in a larger way. Naturally, that’s exactly what Tales of Glory aims to do.
Just like with Chivalry and Mount & Blade, you take on the role of a soldier in a big medieval battle. In Chivalry it’s all about the action with a smattering of game modes ranging from team-based objective warfare to straight up deathmatch. Mount & Blade, for those unaware, is a much more tactical affair as you roam the land amassing an army, challenging kings to battle, and sieging castles as you spread your banner throughout the kingdom. It’s also got one of the most dedicated and creative modding communities in all of PC gaming.
While Tales of Glory surely lacks the scope and polish of either of those titles, it more than makes up for it in its originality and execution. The fact of the matter is that there just isn’t anything else like Tales of Glory for VR headsets right now.
With 20 different battlefields, more than 20 different weapons to pick from including longbows, swords, polearms, maces, flails, and more, plus horseback combat and castle sieges, it’s a bit like a heavy dose of fantasy-themed wish fulfillment for me.
Battles can feature up to 100 NPCs total, which really lends a fascinating sense of scale. I’m used to VR games that tip-toe around action and don’t let you interact with more than a handful of characters at any time, but the first time you see a catapult crash into the side of a castle and send enemies ragdollign through the air — while in VR — is pretty special.
Right now it’s all just sandbox-style skirmish matches, but the mechanics are pretty solid. The weapons all feel different and when you start a game you get to pick from an assortment of them. Horseback riding feels a bit janky, but it was still fun to ride down enemies on an open field. Mastering the bow is really enjoyable, just as it is in other games like The Lab’s Longbow and even Skyrim VR.
All-in-all Tales of Glory in its current state is very much like a robust tech demo with a lack of structured content as the skeletal makeup of a much larger game. I really want to play that other, finished game, but this isn’t a bad start.
Since Tales of Glory is still in Early Access it has its fair share of bugs and optimization issues. In fact, unless you have a very high-end rig then you’re probably gonna hit stuttering and maybe even crashes. There’s still a lot of work to be done on this title, including a proper “campaign” mode for singleplayer and multiplayer features.
Tales of Glory is available right now on Steam in Early Access with official support for Oculus Rift and HTC Vive for $29.99. Let us know what you think down in the comments below!