Realistic sword fighting is back in Hellish Quart, and we’re rubbish at it


Bertie: Oh gosh oh gosh oh gosh, I finally get to tell you I did sword fighting in real-life! I would go to a small school gymnasium each week, cover myself in a mix of cricket padding and fencing equipment, and then hit other people (who were part of the class, obviously!) with a big blade. A longsword, actually. A big metal longsword. Cool, huh! (Sussex Sword Academy, if you're ever interested.)

I didn't go for very long, only a few months, but what developed in that time was an appreciation for the actual art of sword fighting, the fundamentals, and how different it is to what we see in games. The biggest difference, even with a big, heavy sword like a longsword, is there's a lot more feeling the other blade and sliding around on them, rather than wild slicing. And usually attacks are one or two moves strung together around an economical movement, and then you back off, or you get so close you can't swing, so you hilt-strike or unbalance the opponent instead. Oh listen to me! Bertie reckons he's an expert.

The tempo is completely different. It's not hyar-hyar-hyar as you chop up a Hollywood set and kick over some scenery, but circling, probing, and feeling out your opponent before you try an attack. And most importantly of all: you do not expose yourself. Not like that, you filthy people! And Hellish Quart gets this. Hellish Quart is all about this.

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