- Mount & Blade: Warband
Mount&Blade: Warband Developer(s) TaleWorlds Publisher(s) Paradox Interactive Designer(s) Armağan Yavuz Composer(s) Jesse Hopkins Version 1.143 Platform(s) Microsoft Windows Release date(s)
- NA March 30, 2010
Genre(s) Action RPG, Strategy, Simulation Mode(s) Single-player, Multi-player Rating(s) ESRB: Teen (13+) System requirements
Mount&Blade: Warband is the first sequel for the action role-playing video game Mount&Blade. First announced in January 2009, the game was developed by TaleWorlds and was published by Paradox Interactive on March 30, 2010, and is available as a direct download from the TaleWorlds' website, through the Steam digital distribution software, or as a DVD.
Warband expands on the original game by introducing a sixth faction, increasing the political options, allowing players to start their own faction, and incorporating multiplayer modes. Reviews of the game were generally favourable, with the addition of multiplayer the most highly praised element. This anticipated game won many awards, such as a nomination for the "Best Indie Game of the Year'.
The main changes to the game were the introduction of a sixth faction, and the reorganisation of the overworld map. The introduction of political options allows players to influence lords and marry ladies, and it is possible for an unaligned player to capture a town or castle and start their own faction. The game contains slightly improved graphics, along with new or altered animations in combat.
The new multiplayer mode removes all of the RPG and map elements from the single-player mode, instead focusing on direct combat. Multiplayer matches cater for up to 64 players, split into two teams based on the kingdoms selected. All players are provided with a balanced 'template' character (which can be altered for each server) based on three general types: Archer, Cavalry, and Infantry. Characters are customised by purchasing the equipment available to their selected kingdom, with better equipment purchased after earning denars (the game's currency) in the multiplayer matches. There is no link between a player's multiplayer and single-player characters, and no way to level up the multiplayer character or alter its characteristics from the templates (other than through the purchase of equipment).
Eight multiplayer modes were included in the original release of Warband. Most were similar to modes found in first-person shooter games (such as team battles and capture the flag), although other modes, like the castle sieges from the main game, are also included.
Warband received an aggregate score of 79.73% from 15 reviews for GameRankings, and 78/100 from 23 reviews for Metacritic. Like its predecessor, Warband was praised as a low-cost game with greater replayability and longevity than most contemporary studio-published games. However, several felt that describing Warband as a sequel was overreaching, and that the game is better described as a 'stand-alone expansion' or an improved version of the original Mount&Blade.
The feature most praised was the inclusion of multiplayer, with ComputerGames.ro describing it as "exactly what its predecessor was missing", while Nick Kolan of IGN stating that the feature is "arguably the main reason for the expansion's existence.". ModDB awarded it the "Editor's Choice: Best Multiplayer Indie Game of 2010" award. Reviewers noted the small number of multiplayer maps and modes, and the imbalance present in several of these, although the ComputerGames.ro review suggested that the producers' acceptive stance towards modding would see these problems rectified. Kolan emphasised the friendlier community attitude compared to other multiplayer games, although Alex Yue of Gamer Limit and Christopher Rick of Gamers Daily News found that there would only be a small number of servers running at any time, and these would not always be fully populated with the possible 64 players. Yue also believed that people who owned the original Mount&Blade and were disinterested in the multiplayer feature would be better not purchasing Warband, as it was the only new addition of worth.
Several reviews found that the graphics, while an improvement over the original, did not compare well with other games. The IGN review claims "it looks like [Warband] was released a decade ago". GameSpot's Brett Todd commented that there were some "picturesque" scenes amongst all the generally "dated visuals", while Rick dismissed the need for high-quality graphics, as he felt the quality of gameplay was more important.
Todd commented negatively on the lack of development for the single-player mode, claiming that although the new faction and political quests added to the original, the game lacks the depth and background of other role-playing video games, and the 'open world' and steep learning curve may intimidate some players.
Reception Aggregate scores Aggregator Score GameRankings 79.73% Metacritic 78/100 Review scores Publication Score GameSpot 7.5 IGN 8.1/10 ComputerGames.ro 85/100 Strategy Informer 8.6 Gamer Limit 8.0/10 Gamers Daily News 8.5/10
- ^ "Mount and Blade Warband System Requirements". Game-Debate. http://www.game-debate.com/games/index.php?g_id=572&game=Mount%20and%20Blade:%20Warband. Retrieved 4 March 2010.
- ^ "Paradox Interactive Announces GDC '10 Line-up". Paradox Interactive. 1 March 2010. http://www.paradoxplaza.com/press/2010/3/paradox-interactive-announces-gdc-10-line-up. Retrieved 20 October 2010.
- ^ Rick, Christophor (31 January 2009). "Paradox Interactive New Titles Announcement". Gamers Daily News. http://www.gamersdailynews.com/story-8154-Paradox-Interactive-New-Titles-Announcement.html. Retrieved 20 October 2010.
- ^ a b c d e f Robinson, Joe (April 2010). "We play Mount & Blade: Warband...". Strategy Informer. http://www.strategyinformer.com/pc/mountbladewarband/review.html. Retrieved 5 October 2010.
- ^ a b c d e f Branco (18 April 2010). "Mount&Blade: Warband PC Review". ComputerGames.ro. http://computergames.ro/en/games/viewitem/id/3950/article/1133/name/mount-blade-warband/section/review.html. Retrieved 5 October 2010.
- ^ a b c d e f g h i Kolan, Nick (13 April 2010). "Mount and Blade: Warband Review". IGN. http://au.pc.ign.com/articles/108/1083231p1.html. Retrieved 19 October 2010.
- ^ a b "Mount & Blade: Warband for PC". Game Rankings. http://www.gamerankings.com/pc/958942-mount-and-blade-warband/index.html. Retrieved 5 October 2010.
- ^ a b "Mount & Blade: Warband for PC". Metacritic. http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/mount-blade-warband. Retrieved 05 October 2010.
- ^ a b c d Yue, Alex (19 April 2010). "Gamer Limit Review: Mount & Blade: Warband". Gamer Limit. http://gamerlimit.com/2010/04/gamer-limit-review-mount-blade-warband/. Retrieved 19 October 2010.
- ^ Henley (20 December 2010). "Editor's Choice: Multiplayer Indie Game of the year 2010". ModDB. http://www.moddb.com/events/2010-indie-of-the-year-awards/features/editors-choice-best-multiplayer-indie-2010. Retrieved 19 Jan 2011.
- ^ a b c Rick, Christopher (27 April 2010). "Mount & Blade: Warband Review (PC)". Gamers Daily News. http://www.gamersdailynews.com/articlenav-2437-page-1.html. Retrieved 20 October 2010.
- ^ a b c d Todd, Brett (22 April 2010). "Mount & Blade: Warband Review". Gamespot. http://au.gamespot.com/pc/rpg/mountbladewarband/review.html. Retrieved 19 October 2010.
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