Tank Combat Game Winter Fury: Longest Road Heads to the Frontlines
As history has seen it, World War II witnessed the largest formations of tanks and tank battles in the history of warfare, from the beaches of Normandy to the sands of North Africa, to the infamous Battle of The Bulge. VR games have featured plenty of first-person shooting on-foot, but never have they have never featured the thrill of operating inside a battle tank. Multiple tons of sheer crushing force and firepower make for a great time, and the fine people at SpiderMonk Entertainment have made that a reality with Winter Fury: The Longest Road. Winter Fury: The Longest Road has players command their very own M4 Sherman Battletank and march across 6 incredibly dangerous battlefields, all to defeat the Nazi army and crush fascism.
Winter Fury: The Longest Road will have players piloting their advanced M4 Sherman tank, utilizing its primary cannon and machine gun ports to eliminate the forces of the Nazi Regime. Players will be able to fight from the 3rd-person perspective, piloting their tank and maneuvering it through enemy territory. At certain points, the player will be able to hop out of the tank and engage in on-foot combat with the attacking Germans. Players will be utilizing various American and German firearms in first-person VR combat to successfully eliminate Germans forces and survive the battle. Machine guns, sniper rifles, handguns, a small arsenal is available to the player. In addition to fighting various german ground forces, players will trek to various battlefields, fighting aircraft and even German warships. If players are fast and skilled, they will be neck-deep in an action-packed spectacle filled with the explosive fury of war.
At PAX WEST, I had the opportunity to try Winter Fury: The Longest Road for myself, including the introduction of a new cockpit mode for the M1 Sherman Tank. Beginning with the cockpit mode, I was plopped straight into the cockpit of the famous tank. The developers instructed me on how to maneuver and pilot my tank, introducing me to the tanks arsenal of weapons, as well as the assortment of firearms available. The tank is piloted with two levers. pushing both of them forward and back naturally puts the tanks forward and back. Turning one lever over the other turns the tank. Using the left hand, I could reload the tank shells into the primary cannon. Looking around to my right, I could flip toggles to reset my tank position or use the hatch to go outside. Piloting and shooting the tank took getting used to but the more I played from this position, the more I enjoyed it! In this mode, several spawn point s would occur, where enemy tanks and Nazi soldiers would appear. In cinematic fashion, tank shells could be shot out of mid-air with the internal machine gun, but that is only a small saving grace when surrounded by enemies. Playing from the tank cockpit was thrilling, immersive, and exciting! I found myself seemingly locked into the chaos of World War II from this position.
As this part of the demo allowed me to switch in and out fo the tank, I took a few moments to hope out of the hatch and face the enemy directly with the assortment of firepower at my disposal. From the world-famous M1911 handgun to the .50 Browning machine gun, Winter Fury: The Longest Road gave me the tools to which to wage war against the Nazi regime, and it was excellent! The assortment of firepower also included the Thomspon Submachine, the B.A.R, a German sniper rifle, and a bazooka. I could hold each weapon with one hand for quick-firing, but ideally, the proper way to hold each weapon was with two hands for proper aiming. For each weapon, I was able to stare down the iron sights, and even use the scope on the sniper rifle. Each weapon felt distinct from the other, form the sound effects to the recoil and performance. I held off waves of Nazis until I was eventually overrun, but the experience was incredible.
For the second half of my demo, I was thrust into one of the big missions of the game. Each mission in Winter Fury: The Longest Road is divided over 6 levels. For this first mission, my objective was to penetrate enemy lines and dispatch an entire division of Nazi soldiers. The combat experience was dynamic and incredibly immersive. While I wasn’t able to use primary weapons of the tank, I was able to mow down waves of Wermacht with .50 Caliber machine gun. For any unlucky soldiers to run up close, I quickly switch to the Colt .45 for quick and easy dispatching. It was easy to fire the weapon with one hand, but to reload, both hands had to be on the gun. Using grenades was fun, but also took a bit getting used to. Pulling one automatically pulls the pin, and even if you lob the grenade with your arm, the game will still throw the grenade in an arc.
The overall combat experience of Winter Fury: The Longest Road was immeasurably satisfying! Winter Fury: The Longest Road goes out of its way to put you right into the thick of all the action! The sensation of using WWII weapons, destroying Nazi vehicles, and gunning down waves of Wermacht, sometimes with their own firepower. At one point, I manned the MG-42, most commonly known as “Hiter’s Buzzsaw.” The level had me fac down Hitler’s forces, except this time, I wielded Hitler’s Buzzsaw on Hitler’s army.
Perhaps the only real difficulty I had in playing Winter’s Fury: Longest Road were the long-distance enemies. Certain enemies, often wielding heavier weaponry, would appear at very long range. With no radar or indicator, I would need to listen to the sound of incoming gunfire. Shooting these distant targets was hard as well. Some kind of indicator would have been preferable.
After my demo, I was greeted by the developers. The team was inspired by the cinematic flair of movies, such as David Ayer’s war film, Fury. Through steam early access, they’ve been able to better craft and flesh-out the overall experience, adding more missions, including naval battles. The team is hoping to include PvP and PvE multiplayer as well.
Winter’s Fury: Longest Road is an excellent experience, even in its current state, with a great amount of ambition to grow and expand. The team is passionate about what they are doing, and it is demonstrated. I personally cannot wait to embark on this road.
Winter’s Fury: Longest Road will be available on Steam VR and Oculus by the end of this year, with other VR platforms under consideration.