For Honor emphasizes that defense is key when it comes to winning matches and surviving battles. It is a lot easier said than done, however, as precise timing is necessary. There are three main types of defense in For Honor with Guard Break, Parry and Counter Guard Break, and we break down each one of them for you below.
Each of the 12 characters within the three factions is timed differently, so you will need to practice with each of the classes you choose to use (practice makes perfect after all). Let's start with Parry, as it is the most difficult of the three to pull off successfully
In For Honor, the enemy directional icon will flash red letting you know which direction the attack is headed for. You will block normally by holding LT or L2 and press the right stick in the desired direction. In order to Parry, however, you'll need to add a heavy attack to the mix by pressing RT or R2 in the same direction as the enemy's attack. Although both blocks stop the incoming enemy attack, they do so in different ways.
A normal block is similar to putting your hand on a door preventing someone from opening it. You're just against it, but not providing and extra force. A Parry is more of an offensive block that sees your character move slightly forward toward the enemy attack. He/she will forcefully block an enemy's attack which will knock them slightly backward. This will cause the enemy to be slightly off balance and open them up for your own attack. Timing is essential for this to work. If you hit the Parry to soon you'll miss and get hit. Too late and it will be like nothing happened and you'll also get hit.
The correct time to Parry is when your enemy's icon flashes a second time. The first will indicate what direction to block. It will then blink red a second time right before it lands. As soon as you see the second red blink is when you should Parry. You should practice before entering into matches, as those who have it down pat will wipe you out rather quickly.
Next up is Guard Break. This acts as a sort of shock maneuver and causes an enemy to drop his guard after being struck. It can be used to extend combinations or help against a more skilled opponent that seems to block most of your attacks. Once the enemy drops their guard, you can attack them or use Guard Break a second time. Depending on which character you are using, this can be a kick or a throw to the ground for Vikings. The directional pad can also be used in order to determine which way to throw your enemy. This can be useful if there is a ledge or pool of water off to the side.
You should note that Guard Breaks only work against enemies that are guarding, hence the name. If an enemy is in the middle of an attack when you pull off a Guard Break, you will still get hit. If this is the case, you will be better off using a quick attack or dodge yourself rather than Guard Break to avoid putting yourself in a precarious position.
Counter Guard Break
This is the last move you'll need on defense. Just as the enemy's icon flashes when they are about to attack, a different icon flashes when they are going to Guard Break you. When this occurs, you can either attack them, dodge out of the way, or perform a Counter Guard Break. As soon as the enemy lands their Guard Break on you, perform one yourself. This will function like a Counter-Breaker in Killer Instinct and in turn neutralize them instead of yourself. You'll now be in a position just as you were if you performed the Guard Break yourself from the beginning.
Timing is also key here. If you do it too late, it won't register and you'll be knocked off balance. If you try to soon to counter your enemy, you'll miss and get hit ending with the same result.
All three of the main defenses in For Honor all have offensive properties to them and are key to your survival. If you just button mash you will run out of stamina, relegating yourself to only blocking until you gain more. You'll need your best offense and defense in order to really succeed in For Honor. It's a delicate blend of give and take, and requires practice in order to pull off correctly. Hopefully, this guide helps out a bit.
In the meantime, let us know what you think of For Honor below.