If you’re a fan of massive claymores, laying down the hurt, and being passive-aggressive, then the Highlander is the perfect For Honor hero for you! For Honor is a brutal and exciting melee combat fighting game developed by Ubisoft in 2017 that gives perhaps the most realistic take on melee combat so far.
I have found that the game is a challenge that keeps you entertained. Much like a Souls-like game, you may not always succeed at first, but you’ll feel victorious when you land that execution or combo after hours of practice.
One of the biggest draws to me was the historical aspect of For Honor. While the game does have unique canon lore, their heroes are callbacks to many historical fighters. As such, you’ll experience some of your favorite fighters duking it out in various game modes.
Get ready to discover who would win between a stealthy shinobi and a Shaolin monk. With this game, you’ll be able to pit fighters against each other and experience the glorious art of combat like never before.
There’s a catch, however. To enjoy the game, you have to learn to play your heroes first. That’s where this guide comes in. For now, let’s look at one of my favorites in the game, a complex hero, one of the most challenging heroes in For Honor, the Highlander.
Hitting Heavy with the Highlander
Part of the fun of playing For Honor is its intricate fighting system. While we’ll delve into the nitty gritty later on, the core is that it is complex. Different heroes have different fighting styles that feel unique to each one. This is astounding, considering how closely they represent the actual fighting styles of the historic warriors they represent.
Playing Hybrid Heroes
In-game, the Highlander is classified as one of the Viking’s Hybrid heroes, along with the Valkyrie. A Hybrid hero in For Honor is a versatile mix between the other three types of heroes (Assassins, Heavies, and Vanguards). This means that their skillset doesn’t specialize as much compared to these types, but with enough experience, you can adapt your fighting style to suit any situation.
As a Highlander, you are a Hybrid hero because you rely on patience and an understanding of your opponent’s moves to know when to best engage. Through the dual stance available to the Highlander, you can stay on the defensive before shifting into a powerful offensive stance to take advantage of your opponent. As of season 6, the Highlander has received a few buffs to this playstyle, such as stamina changes and damage buff.
This dual fighting stance is one of the main reasons the Highlander is complicated to master. Knowing when to stay in a stance or switch takes a veteran’s knowledge. When applied, your opponents can expect nothing but frustration as they are met with steel until their end.
While the terms below may get quite technical and assume you know the basics of For Honor combat, I’ll try to make it as simple and understandable for you, so read on!
Master of Forms and Stances
Below are the effects of the different stances and forms that the Highlander utilizes. For this guide, both stances and forms will be used interchangeably. To begin, we’ll get into the offensive stance and how to switch into it, as well as when to use this stance. Next, we’ll follow up with the defensive stance to get a complete overview of what makes the Highlander so unique.
The offensive form is when Highlander can really start laying down the hurt. This form is marked by a near-guard stance with your sword aligned for a diagonal or side cut for your side guard. Your top guard has your sword rested behind your back for an overswing.
Most good Highlander players are adept at switching into this form out of defensive form whenever the situation calls for it. Let’s take a look at some of the forms’ unique properties.
Offensive Form Properties
To enter offensive form, hold the heavy attack button and keep holding it to remain there. Hold the feint button to get out of it, ,and you will return to defensive form. Getting hit while in offensive form also returns you to defensive form, so dodge frequently.
While in offensive form, your heavy attacks are unblockable. Additionally, your light attacks are not interrupted when blocked and do not repel you. These light attacks will cost you stamina. While in offensive form as well, you cannot roll as the Highlander. However, your dodges become notably faster.
Listed down below is a list of offensive form-specific moves. During the offensive form, your heavy attacks becoming unblockable is enough to mow down unaware opponents. Use these moves when you have the advantage, such as when opponents are staggered or low on stamina.
- Balor’s Might
- Caber Toss
- Formorian Kick
- Fast Flow
Many of these moves chain well into each other. Balor’s might is your main heavy attack which guarantees an unblockable 40 damage. Caber toss and Formorian kick allow for wall splatters and throwing off ledged. They also set up Balor’s Might.
To make the most out of offensive form, master your flow from defensive form and use either Caber Toss or Formorian Kick to quickly disable and stagger your opponent. A well-placed Balor’s Might will deal heavy damage. Afterward, return back to defensive form once your opponent recovers.
Highlander can perform a soft feint during any of these moves startups. This is useful as you get to bait out any dodges and rolls your enemy will perform. This plays mind games with your opponent and forces them to dodge early or late, potentially eating a nasty greatsword.
Finally, we will discuss fast flows to explain how to get into offensive form quickly to set up your combos.
Below, we will give you the specific nuance on the heavy attack move-sets of the Highlander. Read on to figure out how to activate them and some nifty tricks you can learn.
Balor’s might is the main damage output of the Highlander. This is done by releasing the heavy attack button during Offensive Form. This is a 40-damage unblockable attack. Holding down the attack button after the attack keeps you in offensive form. The name comes from Balor, the leader of the Formorians, an otherworldly race of giants in Irish Mythology who could kill with a glare from his single eye.
This attack being unblockable, is best done quickly after form switching. You can also use this attack to soft feint and throw several light attacks. You can also chain several of these heavies once you perform Caber Toss and Formorian Kick.
You can perform a caber toss by moving back and pressing the guard break. As a result, the Highlander will grab an opponent and throw them to the ground, guaranteeing a free Balor’s Might to take them out. This move is also useful for leading your opponents and throwing them up against environmental hazards.
Pressing Guard Break while in offensive form performs Formorian Kick, an unblockable bash. This helps you wall-splat opponents for a follow-up Balor’s Might or kicking them off ledges like in 300. The reference to the name is the race of Irish giants in mythology called the Formorians.
To fast flow into your offensive form, hold the heavy attack button after a parry, guard break throw, or any attack other than a defensive form chain finisher. This is important as your main threat comes from Balor’s Might and your disables in offensive form.
The Highlanders’ defensive form is noticeable once they have their blade in the upright position resting against or on their shoulder for their side guards and top guard, respectively. The main point of the defensive form is that it allows for quick counter-attacks to dictate the pace of the fight. Doing so allows the Highlander to switch back to offensive form to punish the opponent.
Defensive Form Properties
In the defensive form, you should focus on quick light attacks, dodging, and waiting for your opponents to make mistakes. In the defensive form, you retain the Highlander’s ability to Block, Parry, and Guard Break while giving his attack Defensive properties.
Notably, the heavy attacks of the Highlander while in defensive form have Uninterruptible Stance, also called “Hyper armor.” So too, makes the second attack of their light attack chain. Hyper armor means that once you are in the animation frame of the move, your opponent cannot cancel the attack, guaranteeing a trade. This makes trading using the Highlander easier, given their significant damage.
The more critical defensive attack property comes from the Highlanders’ light attacks. Although these are some of the slowest in the game, if used to react to an opponent’s opposing attack, your attack will beat theirs due to Superior Block during their startup.
You block their attack, your attack becomes unblockable, and you deal 30 damage. Remember that this is only possible if your guard is already fixed in a position. If you switch guards immediately before your light attack, you will not get this benefit and will be punished.
Here are a few defensive form-specific moves that you should master. Take note that you will be in the defensive form, especially in duels against new players. These moves allow you to observe their fighting style and keep yourself healthy before unleashing the fury of the Highlander.
- Tír na nÓg
- Lowland Slashes
- Banshee’s Wail
- Celtic Curse/Impetus
- Zone Attacks
- Sprint Attacks
We will discuss each of these moves down below. Switching these moves depending on your scenario and remaining conservative during defensive form is essential. The defensive form is extremely powerful as your attacks deal severe damage compared to other Heroes.
Meanwhile, you also get Hyper armor and Superior Block for your light attacks. This means that when you have to trade in a high-stakes duel, more often than not, you’ll come out on top.
Tír na nÓg
Tir na nÓg is another name for the Celtic Otherworld, hopefully where you’ll be able to send your opponents. This is the first chain attack of the Highlander in defensive form. This is done with a 3-hit chain of 2 light attacks into a heavy finishing attack. Your light attack opener begins with a half-sword swing, and your heavy finisher is an overhead swing (light, light, heavy).
The damage of this first chain attack depends on whether you are able to attack continuously. Neutral light attacks leading to Tir na nÓg deal 15 damage, while chained attacks hit for 20. Your second attack in this chain also has Hyper armor, so don’t feel afraid to trade with this, especially when you have Superior Block up.
A banshee’s wail in Irish mythology signified the imminent death of the person hearing the wail or the death of their family member. In For Honor, your opponents won’t need to puzzle over who is dying once your heavy 2-hit heavy chain combo hits them (heavy, heavy).
The damage of the Highlander’s heavy attacks varies. They deal 35 damage when hitting from the side and 45 damage when coming from the top. Remember that your heavy attacks have Hyper armor, so this is a guaranteed hit unless your opponents can dodge.
Lowland slashes are the second chain attack of the Highlander. The attack’s name is a reference to the Scottish Lowlands, one of the main inspirations for this hero. The attack chain itself is a 2-hit chain of a light opener into a heavy finisher (light, heavy).
Celtic Curse is Highlander’s main dash attack in defensive form. Besides being used to psyche out your enemies with a giant man with a greatsword running at them, you also get to deal tremendous damage with Hyper armor (forward dodge, heavy).
Celtic Curse is a versatile attack with 25 damage to your opponent’s top guard. It is used to start chains and heavy openers. This can also be used to feint into a side attack instead with a cancel which is considered a Celtic Curse variation.
To do a Celtic Curse cancel, input a left attack or right attack during the startup of this move. You will sidestep to the opposite side of the attack and gain the dodge property, allowing you to avoid attacks (forward dodge, heavy from left or right).
Celtic Curse can also allow you to switch or fast flow into Offensive form during its startup by holding the heavy attack button during startup. This allows you to feint or bait out your opponent. You cannot do this during a Celtic Curse cancellation.
High-Functioning Fighting Style
With this dual-stance hero, you should always keep your opponents on their toes. The Highlander as a Hybrid Hero, is deceptively fast, despite carrying a massive sword. Now that you’ve learned some of their dual stances move-set let’s finish with some punishes and other moves to round out this character.
Hard Hitting Punishes
Your punishes as the Highlander occurs in several scenarios, which I list down below. These help you counter and react to whatever your opponents are up to.
- Guard Breaks
- Wall Splatters
- Out of Stamina Opponents
The first punishment occurs on guard breaks. Here you either get a light attack for 15 damage, or you can make the first attack of your zone attack, detailed below. The light attack deals around ten damage, while the first zone attack deals 15. Take note that you will need enough stamina to perform this brutal punish, and without it, the punish will fail.
The second punish comes after a wall splatter, something easily set up with Formorian Kick or Caber Toss. The best follow-up here is to fast flow by holding a heavy attack and releasing it to unleash Balor’s Might for 40 unblockable damage.
Parrying your opponent’s heavy attack also opens them up to a quick light attack with around 15 damage. Meanwhile, repelling an opponent’s light attack needs a fast flow into offensive form, then releasing the heavy attack button for a Balor’s Might at 40 damage. You can alternatively do Formorians Kick instead and then do Balor’s Might.
If your opponents are out of stamina, you can punish them by going into defensive mode and making a light attack, followed by a top-heavy attack or Lowland Slashes.
You can perform a sprint attack by sprinting toward your enemies and attacking with the heavy attack button. This leads to a sprint attack chain. This chain is slow, however, and easily punishable on the second attack.
It is instead recommended that you feint your second attack instead.
Take note as well that this does not allow fast flowing and cannot start other chains. Don’t expect an execution from this if you manage to take someone down.
The Highlander also has a three-hit zone attack that circles around them and targets the opponent’s left guard. As with the sprint attack, the second attack here is punishable due to how slow the attack chain is. It is also recommended to instead feint after the first attack. As with the sprint attack, you cannot fast flow to offensive form, and the zone attack cannot start new chains.
Highlander in the Meta
To discuss Highlander right now, we first have to discuss his dueling potential and his role in team game modes. His viability will differ depending on which way you’re in due to changing how you play.
Highlander, once mastered, is an absolute beast in duels. The keyword here is being overwhelmed. In fights, his light attacks in offensive form are blindingly quick and stop most combos unless Hyper armor is involved. Additionally, his soft feints in Celtic Curse allow him to confuse opponents for a guaranteed defensive heavy or a fast offensive flow into Balor’s Might.
For a first-timer, however, Highlander will not be as rewarding. His kit is complicated, and the grind to master him perfectly is not something everyone is up to. This boils down to how much experience you have with For Honor in general and how committed you are to learning this Hero. If you aren’t ready to dedicate so much to learning his moveset, there are other heroes for you.
Team Game Modes
Team games such as Breach and Dominion are much more forgiving for most Highlander players. In team game modes where duels aren’t always the main spectacle, your unblockable heavy allows you to punish the enemy team coming in close. As you aren’t always the focus of attacks, you can switch to Offensive Form more often without worrying about getting hit and sent back to Defensive Form.
Although you’re somewhat decent at ganking, your slow movespeed means that you should defend points and areas instead. This is perfect as you will be able to be with teammates most of the time, and you won’t need to overthink every fight. You’re more of a tank than a quick-footed assassin that goes around and kills people.
As Highlander, you want your matchups to be against heroes that rely on guarding, as your Balor’s Might can bypass their defenses. Consider going against heroes with shields with a reliance on dodgeable heavy attacks.
You are quickly interrupted from offensive form once hit, so you want to avoid matchups against heroes with quick attacks – particularly heroes with undodgeable light attacks like Gryphon. You will also want to leverage the range of your claymore to your advantage by using frequent zone attacks to establish frame advantages.
Feats are abilities outside of combat that For Honor Heroes can equip in specific game modes. Each hero can have four feats equipped, but a freshly brought hero only has one feat available for each rank. To gain more feats, a player must level their hero in reputation. Each tier has three feats available, meaning 12 are known per hero. Here are the Highlanders’ feats and which are the best ones.
Tier 1 Feats
The three tier-one feats of the Highlander are Rush, Body Count, and Fast Recovery. Rush is a triggered ability that increases movement speed for a duration. Meanwhile, Body Count and Fast Recovery are passives that give you health and stamina for Body Count, and Stamina Recovery for Fast Recovery.
Among these tier 1 feats, Fast Recovery is preferred to take advantage of the dodge speed bonus in Highlander’s offensive form. Body Count is an excellent alternative to this, but it requires more fighting to take advantage of and isn’t as reliable.
Meanwhile, Rush isn’t necessarily wrong, particularly in game modes like Tribute. However, Fast Recovery helps Highlander shine more in prolonged combat, their main strength.
Tier 2 Feats
Highlander’s tier 2 feats are Bear Trap, Inspire, and Winners Advantage. Bear Trap is an activated ability that allows you to place a medium damage trap that disables your enemies. Inspire is also started and helps your allies deal more damage while buffing your soldier’s attack speed. Finally, Winner’s Advantage gives you a temporary attack buff after a successful attack, a 20% damage bonus on your next attack.
The Winner’s Advantage is the clear winner because of Highlander’s unique heavy Balor’s Might. An unblockable serious attack during a form that emphasizes landing said the attack is a reliable way to land successful attacks. This allows the Highlander to keep dealing damage and hitting like a truck.
Bear Trap is a solid secondary feat, particularly since you have skills like Formorian Kick and Caber Toss to position them into that trap. The damage is excellent and sets you up for a Balor’s Might. Just make sure you can land the trap.
Inspire isn’t a bad feat. Unfortunately, it’s just outclassed here by two more reliable and synergistic accomplishments. Consider taking this when playing in Breach.
Tier 3 Feats
Highlanders’ tier 3 feats are Second Wind, Longbow, and Fury. All of these are activated abilities. Second Wind is a nice heal, while Longbow is a nifty ranged option for moderate damage. Finally, fury buffs your attack and defense stats, along with your speed, for a short while.
Second Wind is by far one of the most clutch abilities in the game. You don’t need the buff of fury as much if you play well, while the Longbow is fun but doesn’t provide the utility of a heal.
Tier 4 Feats
The tier 4 feats for Highlander are Spear Storm, Fire Flask, and Champion’s Aura. Spear Storm is an AOE damage attack for some excellent damage. Fire Flask is a damage over time AOE, while Champion’s Aura is a Heal AOE centered on you.
Our top picks here are Spear Storm and Champion’s Aura. Spear Storm deals deceptively significant damage, and Champion’s Aura is a must for Breach. While Fire Flask is alright, it’s more of a zoning tool that requires follow-ups to use effectively.
Let’s move on to the perks available to Highlander. Perks are passives gained through getting and collecting a specific combination of Gears. Every hero, including the Highlander, has access to 7 individual Perks, with higher-level perks accessible with higher-level gear.
The Highlander’s standard perks are Aegis, Shields Up, and Bastion. These are useful in games like Breach and allow for damage reduction.
Highlander’s rare perk is Vengeful Barrier. It gives you a 25-health shield for 15 seconds when you exit revenge. This is perfect for providing you survivability and pairs well with the bonus you get from Aegis, which increases shield strength by 20 percent.
The heroic perk for Highlander is called Last Stand. This perk gives you a damage resistance bonus once you are under 25 health. This damage resistance levels off to around 40 percent and works even when you have a shield.
Meanwhile, your epic perk is called Fresh Focus, which is probably one of the best perks available to any hero in the game. When exhausted, fresh focus allows you to generate stamina through counterguard breaks, blocks, and parries. You can regenerate 20% of stamina per action. This, coupled with your feats, allow Highlander to never run out of stamina and keep fighting till the last.
Finally, your legendary perk is called Bulk Up. When gaining a Renown level, you increase your max health by 4. This stacks up to 16 bonus health. In game modes that last forever, like Breach, this has a lot of value over time as it allows you to win trades.
Question: Is the Highlander Good to Playn i For Honor?
Answer: The Highlander is a very good hero to play in For Honor. Their dual stance playstyle and Hybrid Class gameplay allow them to adapt to any situation. This makes them very hard to master, of course, but once you do, your opponents will have a more challenging time reacting to you.
This also makes you adaptable to any situation.
If you enjoy thinking out of the box and figuring out a strategy to victory, then the Highlander is for you. Also, remember that the Highlander deals insane damage with their offensive form. The trick is figuring out when to bring the offense and when to stick with the defense.
Question: Where is Highlander from in For Honor?
Answer: In the game, the Highlander is from the Far North. Even further North than Valkenheim and the rest of Heathmoor. The lore of the game describes their lands as harsh and unforgiving. A place continually battered by storms and the elements to produce some of the most formidable warriors.
Question: What Language does the Highlander Speak in For Honor
Answer: The phrases and words said by the Highlander are Celtic and Scottish in origin. In particular, the term “Dunmaghlas,” which is told by the Highlanders when they enter their Offensive Form, is a traditional Scottish war cry. This war cry can be traced back to the Highland Scottish clans.
The war cry references the seat of power of several Scottish Highland Clans. In Scottish, their war cry would mean, “touch not this cat.” A reference to not touching a cat when its claws are out. We can take this to mean that one should be afraid of a Highlander with their claymore.
Highlander for Honor: Conclusion
Knowing how to handle a giant claymore is a daunting task, even if it’s done online. Like the trained Highlander warrior, you, too, learn how to bring devastation on your foes through your might. With the dual stance fighting of the Highlander in place, you can now adapt to any situation and take down even the wiliest of foes.
That said, it’s time to get out there and cleave a few heads. Keep fighting on, and always remember to get back up again.