In Honor of the Renaissance Festival: The Greatest Medieval Games of All Time
2. Chivalry: Medieval Warfare
It's been referred to as Call of Duty with swords, but Chivalry: Medieval Warfare is more than a time-traveled version of current first-person shooters. Players control a medieval soldier engaged in a civil war between two factions, the Agatha Knights and the Mason Order. Game modes include the standard team death match and objective-based matches that involve breaching a castle or burning a village. Chivalry: Medieval Warfare is a multiplayer-only title, but the developers have announced plans to add a single-player mode.
At first glance, its violent close-quarters combat might seem brutish and simplistic, but there's actually a high skill curve for the game. The combat, which is mostly melee but includes archery, is more complex than point-and-swing. Less skilled players might be able to button mash their way to a decent score, but experts will run circles around them with finesse blocking and perfectly-timed strikes. Players shouldn't expect to top the scoreboard in a match until they've put many hours into the game, but the game's difficulty is what makes it rewarding.
There are only four available classes, but each class can be customized with an array of weapons. The unlocking process can be a bit frustrating because people who have been playing longer will happily kill you with their more powerful weapons while you try to unlock more. Some classes and weapons are simply overpowered, and balance issues plague certain game modes as well--some maps hugely favor one particular team. However, the game received a massive update recently that solved some of these problems, and more updates are planned. All in all, Chivalry: Medieval Warfare is probably the best sword-and-shield combat game ever made.