Hammerfall v0.2

By: Derek Yu

On: August 6th, 2007


“Toe your line and play their game yeah
Let the anaesthetic cover it all
Till one day they call your name
You know it’s time for the hammer to fall”

Matthew Wegner of Fun-Motion brings word of a great new Russian physics game called Hammerfall. This one’s all about floating machines with giant weapons hanging from them. Incredible artwork and what seems so far to be a really awesome steampunk-ish fantasy world.

It’s only at version 0.2, but it’s already very playable. This one’s a little tough on the wrists for me, though, because of all the circular mouse movements. But it’s still fun! Feels good to get a solid hit with the ball and chain.

Apparently there’s a certain point where you must fight as a slave, and there’s a bug in the English language mode that prevents you from moving forward at that point. Simply change the language setting back to Russian to get past. But honestly, the translation is a little rough, so you might as well play the whole thing in Russian.

  • Derek

    Flying worm zeppelins and giant bees. Noice!

  • toastie

    ??? ???????! ??????? ??????!

  • Eudaimon

    Is there a trick to beating the bee level? Or is the worm-boat destined to die every time?

  • fish

    crazy art!

  • makeshifter

    just destroy every thing thats not the blimp and you’ll be okay.

  • makeshifter

    the only thing i hated about this was that he times you. because its the demo version. but the real version isn’t even out yet. i don’t really think thats fair.

  • DrDerekDoctors

    Righty, tried it some more. For me, they’ve got everything right apart from the small matter of the player control and therefor gameplay.

    Love the look of it and the effects and the setting and the basic premise of twatting things with a big hammer or other weapon is sound (spookily, I have a platform game design based on a similar idea) but actually playing the game? Yuck. An exercise in frustration and chance.

  • Jared

    You can increase mouse sensitivity in the config file. Set it to 4 or so and it will play a lot smoother.

  • http://www.flashbangstudios.com/ Matthew

    My system mouse speed is *way* fast, so maybe that’s why I didn’t notice any control issues.

    There’s some really neat stuff later in the game. Check this additional footage: http://www.fun-motion.com/misc/hammerfall-lava.html

    GKosh himself replied on the Fun-Motion post. Apparently this build wasn’t exactly intended to be widespread and he sheepishly apologizes for “mistakes” (I guess this is his first game?). From the Google-translated GameDev.ru thread it sounds like this is a completely solo effort, too. Amazing…

  • Dominic White

    This is a great little game, and if the final product is for sale, I’m definitely buying it.

    Like all good physics-centric games, it has a bit of a learning curve. My first time playing was little more than chaotic flailing in the vain hope that my mace would hit the enemy.

    I’m now on the ‘slave’ chapter, and I’m able to control my attacks far better – I can usually hit the enemy at the angle I want, from the direction I want, and timed so as to either avoid their swing, or deliberately clash weapons in the hope of disarming them.

    It’s a great design decision to trigger slowdown when you land a particularly heavy hit – it allows you to immediately follow it up with a considered and controlled second strike, and perhaps even a third or fourth.

    The art and sound and presentation are top notch too – that goes without saying.

    I must ask for a little help – I’m stuck on the slave arena level where you have to survive against three sword-swinging enemies. They just seem a hair faster and more aggressive than I can really deal with at this moment.

  • Zetetic Elench

    Ah, those guys. Yeah, cross your fingers and try to get them to smack *each other*, instead of you. They’re more aggressive and fast but they’re dumb, and they’ll happily stab each other in a clumsy attempt to move towards you, so just dodge around as much as you can.

    I’m interested to know how he’s done such gorgeously rendered flags in a 2d engine; there’s some really beautiful cloth physics going on there.

  • Melly

    The slave level against the three sword dudes is pretty frustrating, but the only strategy really is to learn to dodge them. Like Zetelic said, it’s all about letting them hit eachother. You’ll usually just wait till the timer ends, but you might get lucky, one of them explodes and you grab his sword to deal some vengeance. :)

    The game as a whole still needs work, of course, but it’s very sound already. Despite the many bugs I could get a very good idea of how the game works. For those having trouble with the control, realise that nothing is random, since it’s all based in physics algorythms, and those aren’t random. It’s about practice and patience, and soon you’ll be far more strategical with your combat (after you learn to land attacks right). The training hall is a perfect place to spend a little while perfecting your swings (though it is obviously harder to hit a moving target. Maybe they could add moving targets as well). The game’s first few missions should be made easier, though.

    The whole game’s concept seems very well designed. I have a soft spot for worlds composed of floating islands and stuff, and fully equipped barrelcopters (they should really be named that) look like whirling bringers of death. Awesome.

    The biggest flaw are the destructable weapons (you can’t choose another one in the middle of a fight, can you?), and how easy it is to mistakenly let a weapon go with the second button in levels with bottomless pits. You can’t get it back, and the game saves your character without the weapon. When I lost gemmed weapons it was a real bummer.

    Can anyone tell me what the fire orange gem really does? I hit the enemy when the weapon is burning but I don’t really see much difference in the strength of the attack (I think it should make disarming easier, but I haven’t been able to test). The green gem is pretty awesome, especially to prevent gangbanging (gives you a few moments where you’re etheral, more the more you let it charge up). As far as I can tell the red gem just increases damage a bit.

  • Dominic White

    You can’t choose another weapon mid-fight, but you can steal them! The ‘siege’ mission fairly early where you defend the fort became a lot easier when I took the heavy axe from an enemy, and then stylishly (and accidentally) threw my sword into a second enemy, killing him, then snatched the axe out of midair.

  • http://www.flashbangstudios.com/ Matthew

    In the 3-on-1 slave fight:

    It’s possible to KO an enemy by ramming them yourself, if you can knock them into a wall.

    Or you can just dodge a lot and hope they kill each other. It helps to have nerves of steel and dodge last minute, because then they have a ton of inertia built up and likely collide.

    Also, I ended up copying my entire Saves directory before nasty fights like this. Can you restore the whole directory if you fail a million times in a row, including time left. It does store the demo time in the save file, but I can’t figure out where…

  • Melly

    I never like to throw weapons. I can’t aim well and it doesn’t seem like it does more damage than a swing (not to mention an enemy might grab it). For ranged attacks I just use the rifles. For unarmored enemies they’re almost overpowered, if you can aim well.

    Also, this game needs multiplayer. 4 players in an arena, or 16 in an open-field battle to the death, how awesome would that be?

  • makeshifter

    honestly i think this will be a great game when he gets rid of that GOD DAMNED TIMER!!!

  • http://www.flashbangstudios.com/ Matthew

    RE: The article edit–there are actually multiple slave fights. The first is when the English translation stops working, and the 3-on-1 is a few levels after that.

  • makeshifter

    uhhhh yeah we know that

  • Derek

    makeshifter, you’re a real stain, you know that?

    The slave levels are awesome. The game is awesome!

  • Lackey

    “but the real version isn’t even out yet. i don’t really think thats fair.”

    With a demo this far along? That’s very fair.

    This is a very cool game. I gave up at first because I found the controls too difficult but once you get the hang of it (long, smooth arcs are better for control than trying to pivot the weapon around your craft) it really picks up. Plus it’s very satisfying to smash your opponents into the ground.

    There’s definitely a lot of technique to this. I breezed through the escort mission my second time, and it took me a dozen tries my first time through.

    Can’t seem to beat the 3 vs. 1 unarmed fight though.

    I will definitely purchase the full version when it’s out if it’s for sale.

    PS: Someone got tired of Peni?

  • makeshifter

    shh if you speak its name it might come back.

    i know but still that timer is annoying as heck. this is the best game I’ve ever played but when you can tell how long it is till your not allowed to play anymore. it just make you want to rush and you don’t take in the story. which is great by the way. but i do wish that it would all be translated. when this game is done and at its final version… then halauagh it will be great. but until then i cant say i love it. besides you guys should know by now that theres always going to be one critic against it.

  • fish

    holy flying nonsense, batman.

  • hi

    Derek, isn’t this game a closed beta? :O

  • Derek

    I have no idea! I don’t think so, unless Matthew is somehow in the beta. I don’t know how he found out about it. :)

  • Twisted Rabbit

    They shuld enter it in the new jay is games contest saying “they rocks are the balls of the ships”…. but its not flash… o well

  • Derek

    *cough* Uh, yeah… they should… *looks around nervously*

  • DM

    i played russian version and the story as well as character lines are really great, have to try english version. Not sure that the same atmosphere could be transfered without some loss.
    guess that this one is a big break through for russian independent game development..
    hope that it will lead to a whole bunch of great games

  • G’Kosh

    There is the updated version with functional and formated english text (no need to switch languages)


  • makeshifter

    my god… thank you!!!! im sorry but its a great story its just i don’t have a clue how to speak Russian. keep it up you the support of most of us from tig comments posting.

  • NoMoreDemoTimer!

    There is even a way to get rid of the timer though a rather complicated one.


    Scroll down for comments/ instructions by red_forman and a confirmation a little bit later.

  • Demicol

    For those who want their weapons back.
    Sorry it’s kinda long, don’t know better way to explain it:

    You can copy the profile files in the Saves folder into somewhere else, and when you lose your weapon, just open the one you copied in notepad, then go to your saves folder and open the same profile file in another notepad and look for the “m_level_file” line. Just copy everything in it from the original one to the one copy one , and save it. Then just replace the one in the game directory with the copy.

    Just make sure you use the “exit and save” function every now and then and make a new copy of the profile so you don’t start from too far.

  • Demicol

    Or just make a copy of the profile file after every level. Damn im stupid.

  • Slang

    But I still prefer your first explanation. Took me a couple of minutes to think it through;-)

  • Phasma Felis

    There is a trick to the wormboat mission–as much as you can, stay above and slightly to the left of the boat, in the line of the incoming bees. Most of them will lock on to you or your wingman and ignore the boat. Kill them at your leisure.