En garde! Clang goes medieval with realistic sword controllers

Hand-to-hand combat in Clang by Neal Stephenson

Neal Stephenson is probably best known for his novels like Snow Crash, The Cryptonomicon, his Baroque Cycle, and his piece In the Beginning was the Command Line tracing the development of modern computing technology. But Stephenson has always been a man of eclectic tastes, and now some of that is on display in his new project from Subutai Corporation: Clang. Clang is a game — it’s an arena-style combat game with swords. But instead of players pulling plastic triggers and manipulating D-pads, players will swing controllers built to respond long two-handed longswords — and the game will be based on the actual techniques and physics of real sword combat. Sound intriguing? You can buy your way in: Subutai has turned to Kickstarter to help fund the project. And Stephenson has gotten in front of the camera to make his pitch.

Clang proposes to use motion-capture technology combined with computer modeling, physics, and custom game controllers that capture some of the real feel and technique of sword combat, providing a much more realistic (and engrossing) play experience than waving a Wii remote or using a conventional game controller. Clang apparently started out as an idea for an immersive world game, packed with adventures for games to hack, slash, and puzzle their way through. But Subutai figured that sword-fighting in traditional video games is, well, pretty pitiful, so it set out to develop technology to bring more-realistic swordfighting to gaming.

Ironically, that has has the effect of putting off the whole immersive-world concept. Subutai doesn’t want to bite off more than it can chew, so the initial goal of Clang is basically an arena combat game where players face off one-on-one with European two-handed longswords. Eventually, Subutai plans to add additional weapon types and, when Clang is up and running, then start weaving that world of stories and adventures around the technology. But the developer wants to get the fighting part done first — and done right.

Subutai is looking to raise $500,000 on Kickstarter to fund further development, and hopes to have its first version out the door in February 2013. The minimum contribution is $1, and (of course) larger contributions bring more benefits — up to and including your very own longsword.

Gaming

Everyone’s favorite Pokémon turns gumshoe in ‘Detective Pikachu’ trailer

The first Detective Pikachu trailer has arrived, and it looks like a video game movie could actually be good? Voiced by Ryan Reynolds, Pikachu is undeniably cute in what is shaping up to be a family-friendly buddy comedy.
Gaming

Feeling nostalgic? Here are the 25 best Sega Genesis games

Although the company has since fallen into obscurity, Sega was an indisputable titan throughout the '90s. That said, here are 25 best Sega Genesis games that helped define its fabled decade.
Gaming

The best free-to-play games you can play right now

Believe it or not, free-to-play games have evolved into engaging, enjoyable experiences. Here are a few of our favorites that you can play right now, including Warframe and the perennially-popular League of Legends.
Gaming

Out of the loop on BioWare's new game, 'Anthem'? Here's everything we know

BioWare announced an upcoming action role-playing game called 'Anthem' at EA Play 2017. Here's everything we know about the game so far, including gameplay, DLC, and when you'll be able to play it.
Gaming

If we get a Nintendo 64 Classic, it needs to have these games

The Nintendo 64 introduced a long list of top-tier games, but which were the iconic platform's best? From Mario Party to Ocarina of Time to NFL Blitz, check out our picks for the best N64 games.
Gaming

Here are the best Black Friday deals you can get for Xbox One, PS4, and Switch

If you're in the market for a new video game console, there's no better time to pick one up than Black Friday. These are the best video game console deals for Black Friday 2018, including PS4, Xbox, and Nintendo Switch.
Product Review

‘Battlefield V’ shows up late for battle, but it's still unprepared

Battlefield V’s War Stories give us a new perspective on World War II, but the game’s lack of polish across both its campaign and multiplayer modes are almost impossible to ignore.
Gaming

Fortnite Guides

Tips and tricks, challenges guides, user guide, and more Fortnite: Battle Royale is a mode that’s constantly changing and evolving over time. With each new season comes new challenges, weapons, vehicles, and limited time modes. Battle…
Gaming

Fortnite

Our full coverage Fortnite from Epic Games first arrived on PC as an early access game in 2017. Featuring a mode called Save the World, players could jump online with a group of friends to collect resources, build structures, and defend…
Deals

The best cheap-but-awesome PS4 game deals under $20

The PlayStation 4 has hit its stride in recent years and is now more affordable than ever. If you have a PS4 or are thinking of buying one, we’ve collected some must-have games. The best part? Each of these is just $20 or less.
Deals

Black Friday 2018: The best deals so far

Black Friday is the biggest shopping holiday of the year, and it will be here before you know it. If you can't wait until November 23 to start formulating a shopping plan, we've got you covered.
Gaming

‘Final Fantasy XV’ mod remembers the RPG’s canceled DLC and features

A Final Fantasy XV mod pays homage to the content canceled by Square Enix. Episodes Aranea, Luna, and Noctis will no longer happen, while the promised level-building tool and Mod Organizer improvements for the PC version were also shelved.
Gaming

Owners of ROM sites ordered to pay Nintendo more than $12 million

An federal court judge in Arizona has awarded Nintendo more than $12 million in damages in its lawsuit with the owners of two popular ROM websites. The sites must also be transferred to Nintendo's control.
Gaming

‘PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds’ parachutes onto PlayStation 4 on December 7

Following months of speculation, PUBG Corp. has announced that PUBG is coming to PS4 on December 7. The PS4 version includes all three maps and major features, and you can get some PlayStation-themed apparel items by pre-ordering.