Hack and slash

Hack and slash

Hack and slash or hack and slay can refer to either a subgenre of action game, or a type of gameplay. In both cases, it describes the emphasis on close combat with short-range weapons. "Hack and slash" was originally used to describe an aspect of pen and paper role-playing games (RPGs).

Origins

Hack and slash has its roots in "pen and paper" RPGs such as "Dungeons & Dragons", denoting campaigns of violence with no other plot elements or significant goal. The term itself dates at least far back as 1980, as shown in a Dragon magazine article by Jean Wells and Kim Mohan which includes the following statement: "There is great potential for more than hacking and slashing in D&D or AD&D; there is the possibility of intrigue, mystery and romance involving both sexes, to the benefit of all characters in a campaign." cite journal
last = Wells
first = Jean
authorlink =
coauthors = Kim Mohan
title = Women want equality - and why not?
journal = Dragon #39
volume = V
issue = 1
pages = 16
publisher = TSR Hobbies, Inc.
location =
date = July 1980
url =
format =
issn =
accessdate = 2008-06-12
] The article goes on to report the experience of one D&D player who claimed that "when she plays in tournaments, she does run into the "hack and slash" type of player, but most of them are adolescent males. These types of players not only aggravate her, but other, more mature players as well." As demonstrated by the term's context in the article, it has carried a derogatory meaning from early on, one intended to suggest that mindless violence makes for a one-dimensional RPG and is a style favored by juvenile players.

Other times, hack and slash is employed as a judgement-neutral term simply used to describe one of the different types of RPG gamers and different styles of gameplay. Hack and slash can be used to contrast fighting one's way through a dungeon (a "dungeon crawl") with role-playing for the purpose of plot development and character development.

As a type of gameplay

Hack and slash made the transition from the tabletop to video games, usually starting in D&D-like worlds.cite web | title = The attack of the backstories (and why they won't win) | author = David Myers | url = http://www.loyno.edu/~dmyers/F99%20classes/AttackOfTheBackstories.pdf ] This form of gameplay can now be found in a wide range of role-playing video game games, including games such as "Lineage", [cite web | url = http://anarinsk.com.ne.kr/data/lineage.pdf | format = pdf | title = Game Design, Trading Markets, and Playing Practices | author = Huhh, Jun Sok; Park, Sang Woo ] , "Ultima", and "Diablo". [cite web | url = http://www.insidemacgames.com/news/story.php?ID=16949 | title = Diablo III: Timeline, Expanded RPG Elements, iTunes D3 Music | date = 2008-09-05 | author = Cord Kruse | accessdate = 2008-10-07 ] This form of gameplay also extended beyond role-playing games, to beat 'em up action games such as "Golden Axe". [cite web | url = http://www.gamespot.com/wii/action/goldenaxegen/review.html | title = Golden Axe Review | author = Greg Kasavin | publisher = GameSpot | date = 2006-11-30 | accessdate = 2008-10-07 ] [cite web | url = http://www.gamepro.com/article/previews/185688/golden-axe-beast-rider/ | author = Patrick Shaw | date = 2008-05-16 | accessdate = 2008-10-07 | title = Golden Axe: Beast Rider | publisher = GamePro ]

As a subgenre of action game

Some games focus entirely on hack and slash gameplay, and are thus a subgenre of action games.

These games are similar to "beat 'em ups" in that a player must face large waves of underpowered enemies, often followed by a boss fight. However, hack and slash games always arm the player with a close-range weapon, whereas beat 'em ups have scattered weapon use or no weapons at all. Due to the nature of the fighting, the focus in a hack and slash game is to kill opponents, whereas beat 'em ups tend to focus on incapacitation.

Because of these short range weapons, a hack and slash game usually takes place in a medieval or fantasy setting. However, even a modern setting can employ swordplay and other edge weapons, such as "Devil May Cry" or "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles".

If multiple players are involved, gameplay is usually cooperative.

Crowd combat

Some hack and slash games put the player up against dozens or hundreds of enemies at once. This is sometimes called crowd combat, such as in "Dynasty Warriors". This huge number of opponents is possible due to more efficient game technology. One of the earliest games to incorporate this was "Gauntlet".

Crowd combat is not unique to the hack and slash subgenre. Due to the nature of the weapons, crowd combat is more common in hack and slash than it is in beat em up. However, crowd combat is even more common in the related shoot 'em up genre, as seen in "Smash TV".

ee also

* Powergaming

References


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Hack and slash — (англ. hack  рубить и англ. slash  резать, «руби и режь»), иначе hack and slay (англ. hack рубить и англ. slay убивать, «руби и убивай»)   термин, характеризующий геймплей компьютерной игры, в котором… …   Википедия

  • Hack and Slash — Hack Slay [ˌhækənˈsleɪ], auch Hack and Slay (engl. to hack, hacken, und to slay, erschlagen) oder im englischen Sprachraum auch Hack and slash (to slash, aufschlitzen, zerfetzen) ist ein aus dem Rollenspiel stammender Begriff, der sich auf eine… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Hack and slash — (literalmente corta y raja ) es un género o estilo de videojuegos basados en los combates. El estilo es exactamente el mismo que los beat em up con la única diferencia de que el personaje suele llevar algún tipo de arma cuerpo a cuerpo,… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Hack and slash — Porte monstre trésor Le porte monstre trésor, ou PMT en abrégé, est une manière de jouer aux jeux de rôle : l’action se résume schématiquement à ouvrir une porte, combattre un monstre qui se trouve derrière et découvrir un trésor détenu ou… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Hack and Slash — …   Википедия

  • Hack-and-slash — …   Википедия

  • hack-and-slash — adjective Having a focus on violent combat rather than strategy …   Wiktionary

  • Hack and slash RPG — …   Википедия

  • Hack'n'slash — Porte monstre trésor Le porte monstre trésor, ou PMT en abrégé, est une manière de jouer aux jeux de rôle : l’action se résume schématiquement à ouvrir une porte, combattre un monstre qui se trouve derrière et découvrir un trésor détenu ou… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Hack'n slash — Porte monstre trésor Le porte monstre trésor, ou PMT en abrégé, est une manière de jouer aux jeux de rôle : l’action se résume schématiquement à ouvrir une porte, combattre un monstre qui se trouve derrière et découvrir un trésor détenu ou… …   Wikipédia en Français


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.