The evolution of combat in video games has mostly gone down one track: guns. We have customization, different styles and tactics, and enough competition to make companies focus on getting gun-play right.

Yet, swordplay has changed very little. There may be a handful of moves, and some games take it a few steps further (like Bushido Blade), but improvement has been slow.

This is the starting point of author Neal Stephenson, who just posted a project on Kickstarter intending to bring a new level of realism to sword fighting in games. Doing this, he and his team hope to change the way we look at in-game combat. They’re building a new sword controller.

Well, to be clear, they’re going to start with a third-party controller, then work on building their own. But they already have a few prototypes of these controllers in the works—mainly swords with sensors and cameras connected to them. Stephenson calls CLANG “Guitar Hero with swords.”

They’ll also be studying books, talking to experts, sword fighting… the usual. As Stephenson notes, there’s more to sword fighting than just swinging a sword around. There are also grappling techniques, various stances, and different fighting styles—and they want to bring this into the game as much as possible.

Of course, none of this will probably happen if they don’t meet their funding goal of $500,000, but given that they brought in $70,000 with 29 days to go, they’re well on their way to making this happen.

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Joshua Philipp is the founder and editor of He's also an award-winning journalist at Epoch Times.

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