In the war of Valois, Monsieur de Vly died ...

Who I am
Alejandra Rangel
@alejandrarangel
Author and references

Mount & Blade represents the proof that the American dream can also come true in the videogame field: born from nothing, the Spartan graphics, the absent plot and yet ... Yet it has been able to conquer in a very short time an enviable group of enthusiasts, as well as a community of modders among the most active in videogame history.
What made it and still makes it a special title? Basically it is only a fantasy world, however quite reduced in size, which reproduces 5 or more factions clearly inspired by as many medieval nations, in the midst of which the player is free to trade, rob, or seek glory by allying himself with a any of them in the act of vassalage.



The truth is that the character was so anonymous and the world so vast that he could give a truly infinite amount of activities and situations: from villages occupied by bandits to personal quarrels between lords, plots to start wars, personal rivalries, friendships, exchanges. of slaves and food, a virtually infinite object park and an RPG-style character growth system. There was also the possibility of recruiting men and making them grow like the protagonist, complete with unique non-player characters to equip to your liking. In fact, Mount & Blade's strength has always been its incredible replayability and variety of situations.

Modding what a passion


For some, Mount & Blade: Warband it represents more than a game, a basic platform on which to develop your own personal videogame. The official forum is in fact overflowing with changes for the game, ranging from additions of small details (however able to radically change the game experience) to real total conversions that rewrite the setting from scratch, adding historical units, even taking it to another era (there are entire series of mods on the Napoleonic era, a wonderful total conversion dedicated to the Far West and various on the European Middle Ages and Renaissance) or in a fantastic world (from D&D to Star Wars). Like its predecessor, Warband also ensures full support for modders and already now, one week after its release, you can find mini-mods to expand the possibilities offered by the base product. It should also be noted that some "historical" or particularly expected mods for the base game are already being converted to be made playable in Warband.



King Charles was returning from the war ...

Mount & Blade: Warband it does not claim to radically change its predecessor, nor to distort it in its bases: indeed, actual improvements or changes are almost non-existent. It will certainly not be a new Islamic faction (which was lacking in the original anyway) or the possibility of marrying a lady to change things, nor the greater attention to personal and political relationships with the various lords: in fact, they are all features that are already found in some mods. Again, the player starts out as a poor first level "swordman" whose only concession is a family banner if one has chosen to descend from a fallen noble. A few crude weapons, battered armor and, if all goes well, a limping horse complete our hero's inventory. The first steps are not easy at all: even a gang of 5 thieves can be "fatal" (the quotes are there because in Mount & Blade it is not possible to physically die, but only to be captured, faint, impoverished and so on) .

Going to the nearby village can be an idea: 3-4 peasants will perhaps want to follow us and become a first nucleus of troops, and already the small bands of outlaws are not a problem. After a while the village will know us, and here is the first escort mission to bring the harvest to the capital; there, perhaps, the burgomaster will have some other task. From the bounty hunter to the mercenary the step is short and in the meantime the army grows and, with it, also the skills of our character (taken evenly from the card of a Dungeons & Dragons-style RPG for the record): finally we can afford a sword more decent! Hence the world: princesses to marry, kingdoms to be founded, to be destroyed, tournaments to be won, sovereigns to be supported or defeated, friends, enemies, commoners to protect, fiefs to administer, revolts to appease and so on and so forth. : history is at our mercy, and it will be up to us to decide whether to remain anonymous, live it or write it.



If anxiety of glory, thirst for honor, extinguishes the war to the winner…

The first thing that catches your eye in Mount & Blade: Warband is the graphics, which have been enriched by a series of textures of an incredibly higher quality than the original, as well as very pleasant effects of reflection of sunlight on the armor and refraction of objects / people in the ponds. If it is true that in a video game the visual aspect represents, for those who really know it, little more than a tinsel, it is equally admirable the commitment made by the developers to revive the fortunes of the weakest point of their original product, without however go to modify the basic engine and thus create a series of imbalances for players accustomed to a product that offers a lot in terms of playability requiring very little in terms of hardware. The result is very close to that of a pleasant artisan work, as genuine in its simplicity as it is satisfying in the field test.

A second aspect for which Warband is worth its expense are the fights: already Mount & Blade had already stood out for the simplicity and realism of the system, which worked on the movement of the mouse to decide which side to direct the attacks (shift to the right slash from right, up sword raised and so on) and on various bonuses / malus in the use of shooting weapons (stationary, on horseback, in motion) that can be improved by leveling up in RPG style. The combat is now enriched with one dimension: in fact, in addition to the direction in Warband, the "arc" of the blow must also be given by simulating the movement of the hand with the mouse, making the clashes much more complex and real. If, for example, you are charged by a knight, you will have to move the mouse upwards and at the same time give a long arc to strike with a straight sword, if instead the target is an infantryman, here is the hand lowering and the movement be shorter, worth seeing the blade sparkle above the enemy's head without doing him any damage. Marvelous.



Knights who ignore fear in battle: multiplayer battles

The most awaited feature of Warband, however, remains the multiplayer. Missing in the first episode, this time it has been implemented in a rather satisfactory way, presenting some modes and more importantly, stable servers capable of hosting up to 64 players at the same time, divided into archers, infantry and knights (in turn with subclasses as knight light and heavy, archer rather than crossbowman, swordsman rather than spearman) and engaged in pitched battles in the open field, in conquest of castles and villages, or in furious free-for-all melees.
Furthermore, if the goodness of a product is measured by the quantity of players, Warband has already passed all the exams: servers full day and night await adventurers from all over the world.
Waiting for the already announced mod that will make the game map of the single playable in multiplayer (unfortunately it is a basic thing missing) the Warband multiplayer turns out to be immediate, fun and well done, superior to several far more noble productions and fundamental destination for lovers of medieval duels.

Comment

Resources4Gaming.com

8.5

Readers (109)

8.8

Your vote

If on the one hand Warband remains extremely similar to its predecessor, so much so that it presents fewer features than some of the more busy mods, on the other hand it reveals itself, precisely because of this similarity, as a product with very high playability, virtually infinite longevity and, juicy novelty. , a well-made multiplayer compartment and a satisfying graphic appearance. Given the low price (30 € on Steam) and the total support to the community, it is to be expected to see new experiences and possibilities flourish as soon as possible, exactly as happened for the original. The only real flaw is the diffusion only through digital delivery or parallel import (and relative English language), for the rest, Mount & Blade: Warband it is a product that every history buff who has lost the original should have on their hard drive, and that every fan of the original should get hold of to enjoy the news and prepare for the advent of future changes.

PRO

  • Skyrocketing gameplay
  • A few more tricks than the original
  • Good multiplayer
  • The modder community will not wait
AGAINST
  • Technical perfection is still a long way off
  • Only in digital delivery or parallel import

PC System Requirements

Test Setup

  • Processor: Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600
  • RAM: 4 GB
  • Scheda video: GeForce 8800 GTS
  • Operating system: Windows 7

Minimum requirements

  • Operating system: Windows 2000 / XP (SP3) / Vista
  • Processor: Pentium 4 3.0 GHz or equivalent AMD
  • RAM: 1 GB
  • Video card: Compatible with DirectX 9.0 and equipped with 128 MB of memory
  • DirectX: 9.0c
  • Hard Disk: 2 gb
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