There are a myriad of reasons — some massive, others minuscule — for wars throughout history. Wars ranging from the disagreement you had with your mother to World War II to the intergalactic alien space combat we’re likely to experience in the near future. No wars have been particularly fun until video games came along, removing the consequences and the guilt of war. Yet still wars are brutal, sad, scary sort of affairs, no matter what your role is in them — and then there’s Happy Wars.
Happy Wars’ pseudo cell-shaded art style (mixed with a bit of watercolor, perhaps) hearkens back to the days of Cel Damage and Jet Set Radio. The zany visuals and overall lighthearted presentation prove war isn’t always depressing and vile. White is pit against black in this 15 vs. 15 multiplayer action game in an effort to capture towers and destroy the enemy team’s castle. Players can pick from a warrior, mage or cleric class and acquire new skills as they level up and attempt to out-maneuver the enemy team.
Our demo was cut into thirds, with a tutorial and gameplay rundown to start, an explanation of the deeper features of the game following that, and lastly a match played to completion on the game’s desert themed level.
Happy Wars, the upcoming 15-vs-15 hack-n-slash from Japanese developer Toylogic, is showing just how fun war can be in these two new trailers. The above trailer gives the run-down of a typical online match. All 30 players begin the match by spawning in their team’s castle, and once the war begins you have to advance the enemy line by building towers. Towers act as a spawn point once built, but can be destroyed by the opposing team. Dying means having to select one of the three classes and choosing from the avialable spawn points. Battle the other team but be on the look-out for deadly gimmicks, some of which are player-controlled. Once your team reaches the enemy castle, fight your way inside and destroy the big tower in the center. At this point, your team wins! If you’re looking for something more team oriented, there is also a co-op mode where your team defends a castle from swarms of AI. Each map will feature themed swarms, from zombies to sentient tomatoes.
Toylogic CEO Yoichi Take told Dengeki in an interview today that his studio’s upcoming 15-on-15 hack ‘n slash XBLA exclusive Happy Wars “feels like pizza or potato chips,” as compared to the “steak” feeling of Call of Duty’s multiplayer. It’s become commonplace for designer, journalist and gamer alike to use CoD as a measuring stick for something — even when that something appears wildly different from Activision’s FPS behemoth. With the 2012 release flying mostly under the radar in the English-speaking world, though, Take isn’t afraid to do what’s necessary to call attention to it.
In that vein, the studio boss promises that his team is working hard to create more English language content on social networks and the game’s website to convey to the West just what Happy Wars is all about. Gamers won’t have to wait around for that to happen, however; Take shared a number of details about what he sees as a party/action title. While it’s his studio’s first Xbox 360 title, Take himself has previous experience with the platform in the form of 2007’s Bullet Witch. While he once viewed Microsoft’s console as being strictly for extreme core gamers,” Take was eventually introduced to Castle Crashers — a game that makes for a far more apt comparison than any Call of Duty title — and realized the platform had a much wider audience.
Take said that The Behemoth’s colorful sidescroller “changed [his] mind” about what type of content is appropriate for the Xbox. Specifically, he cited the fact that the game was commercially viable, to say the least, even though it has a “comical” style that he previously felt wouldn’t have jived well with 360 owners.