Melee 3.0 has been a long time in the making – and Digital Extremes is well aware of this. As a result of all the back-and-forth, the promises, and the lack of any real progression, it seems like the team has chosen the first half of 2019 to be when they actually bring all of this to fruition,and it really couldn’t come at a better time. The game is in a great place, but certain aspects feel stale and outdated. Things are about to change.
However, it’s too big of a change to do in one fell swoop – this is probably the reason for the previous years’ procrastination. Thus, DE has chosen to implement sweeping changes across three phases, with the first due in the next mainline updated (lexpected mid-March on PC).
On Friday last week (March 22, 2019), DE dropped aforum post outlining this first phase – what the changes are, and what they are looking to achieve from all this (see link at bottom of page). In addition, they followed this up with a surprise stream to show some of this in action, and I’ve gotta admit – it’s looking mighty fine.
Given the forum post is somewhat detailed, we thought we’d summarise here – by taking a look at the 4 major changes that are coming (and an additional note for additional but less important notes.
- Uninterrupted Combat: hate the delay when switching between melee and your other weapons? Relying mostly on quick melee? This will be the change you are after, providing instant switching between atack modes with the press of a button. This will make things feel much more like a Platinum Games-type action game, and this is a very good thing. Note that the plan is to add juggling as well, which will absolutely make my day.
- Combo Resumes: Perhaps you like the idea, but are disappointed that a simple buttn press might end your melee combo? Well, this new instant switching willl allow for combo resumes within a short duration – melee combo – fire weapon – back to melee combo. Magnificent.
- Ground Slams: Ground Slams are already in the game, sure, but now, instead of slamming directly downward, you can now slam in the direction you are facing, allowing for targeted slams, and adding some more manoeuvrability.
- Visual Effects: To date, the visual effects on melee attacks have been simple, with some minor flourishes and spark effects. This is also being revitalised, with more vibrant effects that take on both a look based on the type of Damage you are dealing, as well as the colour of your melee weapons energy colour. Trust me – it looks great in action.
- Additional: Keybinds (channelling is becoming a toggle, while blocking will now be automatic, reticules (melee will be getting its own reticule, if that’s something you were after), Dual Wielding (WILL work with this new melee system), Exalted Weapons (will ALSO work with this new melee system, although keep in mind that the Energy Drain will be persistent even when switching to a different weapon), Hit Reactions (enemies will react to attacks more realistically)
All of this looks plain awesome in action, and I for one can’t wait to see this hit the live servers. Phase 2 and 3 will bring further changes, with Phase 2 focusing on the changes to Channelling and associated mods. Phases 3 is still unknown, but will likely refresh combos and more advanced techniques.
Keep an eye out for Phase 1 in the coming weeks, followed by frantic updates.