Deathloop originally had a more robust melee combat system, but it was scrapped during development and replaced with the kick move.
In a Noclip video interview around the 12:50 mark, Deathloop creative director Dinga Bakaba revealed that Deathloop originally had a combat parry system similar to Dishonored. This idea was scrapped in favor of Deathloop’s simple and very powerful kick.
“In the beginning, you could defend with the machete and parry and block like you said okay let’s just ask ourselves all the questions that just put [sic] the fencing of Dishonored, we will figure it out later,” Bakaba said. “But as soon as we added the multiplayer, something went wrong.”
Bakaba explained that the invader “has a delay over the host.” This provided a difference in gameplay between the multiplayer invaders and the NPCs. So, the parry system was scrapped, but the developers weren’t satisfied.
“So then we removed the timed parry and it was only [blocking] and that was boring as hell,” Bakaba said. “So we said ‘f*** defense, let’s just replace defense with the kick like a big kick that makes you go oof.'”
The parrying was then removed and the fan-favorite kick was born.
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IGN’s Deathloop review was relatively positive towards the game and praised the combat system: “The precision engineering of this complex, looping world is held in balance by Deathloop’s combat system, which is a delightfully raucous affair that roars like a dragon with ballistic breath.”
Petey Oneto is a freelance writer for IGN.