We are born into this world with no past, no memories and no desires. We start our lives by discovering the untaught environment while traveling through the time until we are old enough to start understanding more than senses and feelings. We come face to face with reality which is only meant to be conquered, developed and evolved only by those who carry the main factor in them. What that main factor might be is something that comes into our lives with the help of those who have been taught about it and grew by following its rules. The so-called factor is none else but the great history that has been leading every single life on this earth.
History is the leading factor of this world. Without history, humans would be nothing more than mere monkeys. Every single thing we have achieved as humanity so far is entirely thanks to our past and the ability to save even a tiny part of it and embody it into our present. History is a big part of our lives since they are based on it which means that history has an important role and will always have. History is not a thing so is not something which we can touch and just put away until we need it at some point. Losing history is a big deprivation for us. How do we even have access the history that happened hundreds of years ago? The answer is “memory”, we have access to the records of the past through memory; whether it rises from the mind, books or traditions.
We refer to memory, not as the memory of a single person but the memory that has been inherited to us from our great ancestors. Games have taken a place in our lives as well for the last decades and we seem to invest in them more than we actually believe. No matter the year we are born on, we appear to play games from different times. In this essay I am referring to the history, the memory and the games because later on I will be talking and explaining how history is embed into games.”A person has the opportunity to play history”, this is something possible today.
How is that really possible someone might ask, well but of course it is possible with the help of a company that has created a game based on historical events/facts and a console. Important factor for the companies that create those historical games it’s that they try to keep the game as authentic as possible, this is one of the reasons the games don’t always follow the historical events exactly the way the took place but there is also some or lots of fanfiction in them. That’s the reason we see some games to use only some references of the history into their stories. For the creation of a historical game we have another relationship that is cultural/collective memory and games, not just history and games. Memory in games can be presented as important facts the user might find necessary to remember so he can complete the quests and continue with the story or in some cases is the story based on memories that were collected through the centuries and presented into the game as the story or a part of it. According to Phil Hartup, most of the games that use real data of historic events are just using them as a backdrop. He continues by pointing out that also most of the games tend to play fast but also loose with the history.
There are some games that use the history properly and not just as a backdrop, they use the facts and environment that is based on to actually teach the user about those specific historic events. By creating the most realistic models and circumstances in a historical game, they manage to give a real feeling of how the facts took place on that time and how the people who were coming across those facts were feeling. There are historical games that have a specific storyline for the user to follow, for example a game that is following historical events with the turn of events as they actually happened is a game that doesn’t give important options to the user that can make major changes in the storyline. But there are games that give a lot of options to the user that will indeed affect the game’s story, those are the games that use the history as a backdrop since the ending of the game will be an abstract one instead of the expected ending that comes from a specific historical event. Another way that history is used in games, it’s not by using the historical events to tell the story but instead it uses them in order to show how the power system was performed in those eras so the armies could accomplish their goals. In those games you are not supposed to be just watching the story going, you are a part of it.
Depending on the game you could be a part of an army or a leader, a king, a lord or maybe even a spy. You could of course still be a nobody who suddenly gets involved into the story. If the game is multiplayer then you most likely aren’t the main character in the game but you might still get to lead your story the way you want. There are of course exceptions that you could be the leader even in a multiplayer game. In games that require strategy, the user must act and take decisions. Knowing how to manipulate others and making alliances with others are important factors that were required for the old leaders so they could lead their armies and conquer others.
Historical games can also be teaching the user of how to become a great leader by protecting your country or a sly murderer who robs his victims, even a double spy who betrayed his king. In games that use the true history as it happened as their root, the real names of the rulers and all the important characters that made big changes can be kept in the story, as also the nations and items like Excalibur and king Arthur. Another important factor in games and also in history generally is luck. An accidental action or just some coincidences can lead the user to great changes which can be resulting to a horrible or an amazing ending for the main character or the game in general.
Chivalry: Medieval warfare (and deadliest warrior)Chivalry: Medieval Warfare is the first commercial title that was founded by the Torn Banner studios for their developed multiplayer-focused hack and slash game. The game is set in a fictional world that resembles the Middle Ages and offers similar gameplay combat to the developer’s previously released games Half-Life 2 mod, Age of Chivalry. On September 20, 2012, a trailer was released which set the release date to October 16, 2012. The developers had confirmed that the game would be PC exclusive initially, but in October 2014, they confirmed that the game would be coming to PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 in December 2014.
A standalone expansion pack called Chivalry: Deadliest Warrior was announced on August 23, 2013 as a tie-in for the television series Deadliest Warrior. It was released on November 14, 2013. The story of the gameBy winning the war, King Alfonso Argon managed to unite the kingdom of Agatha, but later on he became restless with the peace he achieved and started wishing for some action and so he decided to preach the expansion of his empire. The King used his army to move towards the south in order to conquer the neighboring land which’s name was Tenosia. That movement of his drove them to failure which left his army with a big number of the soldiers dead, the King ended up losing his life in a desert. With the loss of their king, the army fell apart. The general Malric Terrowin which was the leader of an elite unit know as the Mason order, rushed back to Agatha in order to inform the people of the King’s death and impel them to prepare themselves for a counter attack to the enemy, Tenosian.
Filled with fear and the promise of supplanting the upper class, the order managed to fast take control of Agatha. The rest of the soldiers returned home in the end but the result was that the Mason Order named them traitors. The knights rallied behind the General Feydrid Kearn and Danum Argon, the King’s nephew and rightful heir to the throne and marched on Malric’s citadel, hoping to restore peace to the kingdom. Destroyed by the war, all the castles across the land are now under siege. Will you side with the traditional Agathian Knights or the radical Mason Order? Your sword will decide the fate of a once-proud kingdom. The gameplay and moreThe game is skill-based, therefore experience is needed. The game calls for the user to start exploring the basics of it and slowly start mastering it as it is controlled just like an FPS, but instead of guns and grenades, the players are given swords, shields, maces, battleaxes and longbows.
The game is set in a fictional but gritty and realistic world since is based on history. The users will have to fight in fast paced online battles while they will be besieging castles, raiding medieval villages and fighting for glory in the arena with the biggest number of the players participating being 32. The use of a controller is needed if the user is playing the game on a console like PlayStation or Xbox, otherwise a mouse and a keyboard will do for a pc.The users are provided with a big range of responsive combat options by a deep melee combat system. They can adjust their attacks and blocks in real time with the use of a mouse for better accuracy and complete control of the action they try to achieve. Users have access to a range of brutal weapons up to 60 from broad swords and battle axes to longbows and javelins. Due to the objective, the teams have to come up with tactics and strategies to break gates down, raid villages and assassinate enemy royalty in order to achieve victory.
The user has a variety of siege weapons which they can choose from, like catapults, boiling oil, ballista, battering rams and more. Vast, lush environments that transport the player to a gritty and immersive medieval world. There are offline play options that allow players to gain familiarity with the controls and gameplay before proceed to action.
There are seven different modes in the game: Free for all, Duel, Team Deathmatch, Last Team standing, King of the Hill, Capture the flag and Team objective. There are four classes: Archer, Man-at-arms, Vanguard and Knight. (in deadliest warrior there are more classes) There are different weapons for each category. The environment is 3D graphic and it changes according to the mode the user is in. In most of the modes the environment is dark(not like night, use of dark colours not too bright). In some modes the sky is blue with sun and in most modes there are dark colours with dark clouds on the sky. There is a forest with mist around or a village with broken houses or an arena where the users are fighting in. The environment sets up the mood for war since is usually filled with dead bodies and broken items.
Many realistic elements like trees, rocks, buildings etc. The clothes and weapons are based on history or are made well to look like those just like the area, buildings and more. Is a fictional world resembling the Middle Ages and therefore is the story. Is a perfect made environment for users who like brutal-historical games. There are effects used, like in many games, that help the user get the feeling of real combat; such as blood on the clothes of the enemy or the user’s character or the ground, the mist in the environment, the fire etc.
The lights are also helpful as the sunlight or the moonlight, depending on the time in the game feels realistic. As said before, there are choices of specific classes of the characters you can choose from and they become even more on the expansion. Many choices of weapons as well. The user has full control of the character as they can move the character in the environment and decide where to attack and how. There are quite some realistic sounds coming from the environment and there are the voices of the characters. The users can communicate through chatting as there are also helping guides that appear as messages on the screen of each user depending on their actions. Medieval ll: Total warMedieval ll: Total war is the continuation of the game Medieval: Total war which is the second game that came after the first game which is Total War.
Medieval ll: Total war is a strategy game which was developed by the Creative Assembly. It was published for the first time on 10th of November 2016 in Europe and later on was publish on other countries as well. The game is available for PC/LNX/Mac. In this game the user’s goal is to take control of their armies leading them to conquer other civilizations/ cities and expand their reign by destroying the enemy, and rebuilding/create better and stronger nations. Use diplomacy and manipulation to win wars with great bloodshed and epic fights in the west and middle eastern world. In this game you will come across elements from the western history, chivalry, the crusades and conquest of the Americas.
The game is set from the first game to this in the ages between 1080s and 1530s while it focuses on medieval warfare, on religions and politics in Europe, North Africa and the Middle East. Story of the gameIn Medieval ll: Total war there is not a specific storyline for the user to follow. Each user is able to create their own story while progressing in the game which is one of the purposes of the game. The user is able to pick a faction and as goal to conquer the map of the game. They create their own stories while going through the game process by building their cities, fighting enemies and spreading their own religions or cultures. Each user is free to create their own storyline.
The gameplay and moreMedieval ll: Total war is a single-player game where the user needs to gain the control of a faction and start building their own civilization which will be military and economically at the same time so they will be able to make attacks and win so they can conquer other factions in the game. Depending on the version, if it’s the short one then the user comes across a few faction specific enemies that they need to defeat and if it’s the long version then the user has the option to gain control of at least forty-five different territories within faction specific cities like Jerusalem or Constantinople. Have control of your army and use it to spread your influence by using diplomacy and winning battles with great combinations of attacks. Spot and gain armors, ammos, different weapons. Your soldiers can have access to a great scale of different appearances and armory. In the game there are motion captured mechanics which have been introduced. When the game starts there is the option between five factions for the user to choose, the Holy Roman Empire and the Kingdoms of France, England and Spain are included.
While the game is progressing there are factions that were defeated on the campaign map which are now unlocked, as a result they lead to a total of seventeen playable factions. In the game there are places that are real life based like kingdoms, but in some cases where there was not a kingdom at the time, to follow as reference is where the creators adapted and used the basic architecture of the time and improvised. There are ruling families for each faction with adult male members. Those members are meant to become either ruler settlements or military generals. As a user you have the control of the decisions of those rulers which will lead you later on, on specific results. If the user had played the previous games then they will have the benefit of finding common elements in this version of the game.
In the game you have the view of your map and also the battlefield view where you are able to watch your army fighting in real time while you can choose which troops to send in the fight and enable the extra commands you are given. In the game you get offers and decides on trades with others, you can make offers as well and decide on your behavior. You can view other countries by using the map and watch what they are doing so you can take actions according to what you want to achieve in the game. Or maybe you can spot enemies trying to make an attack on your cities and prevent them from doing so by arranging an attack to them.
The map is very big and can change accordingly. The age of the characters has an important role in the game as well. You get lines on the map pointing out the direction someone is moving towards as well. The environment is filled with colours according to the time.
Like if you are raiding a village the atmosphere is moody with grey background colours on the sky and mist. Buildings and environment elements like trees surrounding you. Each army is recognized by the clothing the user has chosen for them and by the banners the soldiers are carrying with them.
For easy spot of the horses they have a green circle underneath them. You could be on a desert with bright sun and blue sky or rain and bad weather. Your troops can be moving on their feet or with horses.
For each button you are touching with your cursor you get a box message explaining what the specific button does and how to use it. In a fight you have the option to pause, run forward or backward the video. The extra effects like smoke from chimneys or fire or bombs are extra bonus for the game. You don’t get a lot of freedom with the movement of the screen and you cannot see the battle like in an FPS. You are just observing the facts taking action depending on the choices you have made.
The game generally is based on real facts but it also contains some improvisation from the creators. The buildings and environments are real looking and so are the characters and all the elements. They of course don’t lose the game aesthetics but they keep a real life based feeling in them. The user has always access to the mini-map on their left and can switch to a full screen map from the options that are given. In Medieval ll: total war the available sounds are the voices of the soldiers/ armies and the sounds from the effects like the rain, fire, wind etc.In the world of games there is a category with historical games, those are games that are set in specific historic time periods which are used to teach the user of many fact and details while playing. It is known that people learn more easily when they are interacting with the thing they are studying over, which brings us to the conclusion that by using the true historic facts for the storyline of the game and giving the best graphics and effects is what can help anyone learn about it the fastest and in the most fun way, especially if there are quests requesting answers for things that happened in the previous levels of the game where memory is needed.
The games that are developed with the purpose of using and teaching history to the user, shouldn’t just use the actual environments, dress code, weapons etc. They need to make the user start thinking differently and adopt the correct way of encountering specific situations with the proper behavior and strategy. For example a true king would either be fair and use diplomacy to win his wars or be a good strategist and lead his armies to victory through proper and smart strategies. Of course this is one of the most difficult tasks to be achieved since the users decide to play a game mostly for the fun and the action it offers, making their blood boil with excitement for the battles and fights. Not many will achieve to win the game with their first effort since they won’t know which are the proper decisions to make. In terms of what has been explained in the text above, there are lots of games that teach history and that’s why they use it.
There are games that use historical facts but don’t teach history, it just makes the game more appealing to a specific group of users. And there are games that don’t teach history, don’t use the facts at all but they do use things that existed on that time as references such as kingdoms or items. Games are always fun but they don’t always have to offer what the user is requesting and therefore the user has to compromise or simply do a research before deciding on a specific game.