Vanguard: Fight for Rudiarius was one of the standout indie games of EGX for me. Not just for its beautiful graphics and immersive gameplay but also for its ambition.
Vanguard: Fight for Rudiarius is bold and ambitious for all the right reasons. It is a game that is being built properly. Set to the backdrop of a wonderful alternate history storyline, and implemented across multiple platforms and featuring crossplay Vanguard already has a good foundation to start with.
Add to this the passion of lead developer Chris Jefferies and his team at Dev Clever. Throw in the desire to build a strong and informed community that shape the development of the game before launch and you have all the right ingredients for a big hit.
Let’s take a deeper look at all these ingredients that when put together make Vanguard greater than the sum of its parts.
At the core of any good game is an immersive storyline. A reason for bringing death and genocide to the galaxy if you like. Personally, I am a massive fan of alternative history timelines and Vanguard has a brilliant one.
Imagine an alternate timeline where the Roman Empire never fell. Instead of conquering most of the known world they in fact conquered the whole of planet earth. Fast forward a few millennia and now the Holy Roman Empire has conquered around 80% of the known universe!
Armed with laser rifles instead of swords and spaceships instead of chariots but the culture of the Holy Roman Empire remains. Just a little updated.
The days of the gladiators fighting in the Coliseum in Rome has evolved along with the empire. Now the Vanguards fight in space arenas for the entertainment of others. With each victory you progress to the next arena, regain some of your honour and face the next challenge. One day, maybe, one day you will not only regain your honour but also your freedom.
Whilst at EGX I was able to play Vanguard on all three platforms and was incredibly surprised by how smooth it ran on all platforms. First up I played it on PC with joystick and throttle controls and it was smooth and intuitive ( a theme that ran across all platforms)
Vanguard is incredibly pick up and play. There is no real need for a tutorial or training missions (although I assume there will be some in the full release). After a couple of seconds testing out the controls I was away. Looping over my opponents, Corkscrewing past incoming missiles and pull off sweet sweeping flyby attacks that made me feel like an epic space pilot.
Next up was the VR build of the game that is exactly the same as the PC version except for the added immersion of VR. I was a bit concerned about this platform since the sweeping moves and full 360° loops would most definitely cause motion sickness. I was pleasantly surprised to find that this wasn’t the case at all. Maybe that can be put down to the fact that I play a hell of a lot of PSVR. I still get motion sickness in some games but it was non-existent in Vanguard: Fight for Rudiarius. For obvious reasons VR was my favourite platform to play on but apart from the immersion and different game controls it ported across from PC perfectly.
The final platform for Vanguard was mobile and this really blew me away. Simple on-screen touch controls give you the same intuitive controls. This means that just as with the PC and VR modes you move instinctively without having to think about controls.
The big deal for me though was that even though the graphics had been downgraded for mobile it still felt like the same game I had played on the other two platforms.
Cross Platform is where I was blown away the most. Whilst playing on mobile I was playing against those playing on PC and Mobile. There was absolutely no advantage to either platform. I have no idea how they have achieved this amazing feat of balancing. I had a few rounds on each platform and I honestly couldn’t say I was at an advantage on any platform. It genuinely felt fair and balanced across all platforms.
The other advantage of Vanguard being cross-platform is crossplay. You can be sat at home and have a few rounds in VR. Jump on the bus or train to work and continue your climb throughout the arenas. Then arrive in the office and have a few cheeky rounds on the PC during your lunch break. All on the same account!
Dev Clever has managed to create an amazing PvP game that is truly flexible to your lifestyle. As mentioned earlier there is no discernable advantage to playing on any one platform so how you play Vanguard: Fight for Rudiarius is purely down to your set up, lifestyle and schedule.
I can see a lot of people playing this game at home on PC or VR setup and then jumping on to mobile when they are on their lunch break/travelling to work/or the PC is in use by someone else.
Basically, no matter when or where you are wanting to play Vanguard. No matter what is happening in your life. Vanguard: Fight for Rudiaria is ready and waiting for you.
The team at Dev Clever really seem to not only know what creates a great game but have the passion of gamers at heart. I know this article is in danger of sounding like a paid piece and I honestly swear to you it is not. but after all the games I saw at EGX it was refreshing to see a team that not only spoke about building a community for the game but also had a road plan for exactly how they are going to do it!
Not only are they wanting to create an online player base to make the game successful. They are also wanting an active community that helps shape the development of the game. Everything from new ships, weapon balancing and new arenas are all up for discussion and debate.
They are even going so far as to invite a number of select community members to their offices in Tamworth for a Vanguard “training school”. This approach to gamers will no doubt give the community ownership of the game and I can’t wait to see how it will evolve.
If you are interested in signing up to the community and be involved in the development of the game you can do so over on the Vanguard website. Also, you can use the Vanguard ID code BADGER for exclusive community rewards.
As if you couldn’t tell by this article I was really blown away by Vanguard: Fight for Rudiarius and this was after only 30 mins of hands-on gameplay and a short interview with Chris Jeffries (apologies for the poor audio.)
I can’t wait to see how the development of this game progresses and its evolution through community involvement. This is a game I urge you to check out and take the opportunity to get involved. I know myself and Stoffel Presents will be following this game closely as well as our own community in our Facebook group Hidden Gems.