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Determinance: Freeform SwordFighting
We take an early look at Mode 7's first game, Determinance: Freeform SwordFighting.

Labeled With  Mode 7 Determinance
Written by Josh Lowensohn on Wednesday, September 20 2006

We’ve gotten the chance to play around with an early build of Mode 7’s first game Determinance, and boy is this one shaping up to be fun. The premise is simple, move the concept of the fighting game away from a button masher to a natural control scheme using the mouse. Instead of trying to memorize button combos, you just use the mouse like you would your blade. The result of this control scheme makes for an easy to pick up game that provides instant tactile satisfaction.

Blocking an attack

After spending about ten minutes with the tutorial we were ready to go. The trial teaches you basic sword movement technique and the two special moves you employ to aid you in taking out your opponents. The styles you can learn enable a great deal of depth—employing as much of the mouse as possible. If you have a gaming mouse you’re in for a treat as you can custom map the controls to make it easy to setup the special moves. You can even use your mouse’s scroll wheel to angle your wrist, gaining that critical angle to slip off your opponent’s block and go for the face. In fact, you can control your entire body, allowing you to turn 360 degrees to make sure you can face multiple opponents without having to target them in a pinch.

Gameplay takes place high above the ground as your fight other swordsman/women in a manner of techniques, either taking turns striking one another or getting in close for some intense sword fighting action. It should be noted that you will probably struggle after the first few foes if you don’t spend the time with the tutorial. The A.I. is fierce and unless you learn how to block, your opponent will get plenty of good hits on you. Mode 7 has built in two skills to help you avoid getting metal in the face with their strike and block moves. The strike turns your sword a glowing blue for a second or so, and striking while charged gives you a considerable damage increase. Toggling the block temporarily stuns you, however if you successfully block an attack while charged, you can stun the enemy and come back quickly with a direct hit.

That\'s a moon, but this isn\'t earth...

What’s really cool is the custom move creator. This lets you piece together multiple attacks and save them as one button macros that can be used in-game. We combined a wide sweep followed by an upward swing and saved it to our list. A few settings later we were using this move right away and it proved quite effective. The possibilities are nearly limitless and very easy to pull off. This system could be made a bit easier, maybe with some graphical interface (in game), but it’s still quite robust.

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