The Mount & Blade Franchise has a very special place in my heart, the original game was one of the first games I played as a young, 10-year-old, gamer. While all my friends were busy playing Wii Sport and GOW, I was slaughtering Nords and Smashing Looters with my Swadian Knights.
At the 2017 Gamescom, while exploring the business area I saw a familiar logo at one of the booths. That logo obviously belongs to the awesome game I once played. That was the first time I played “Bannerlord”, exactly one year ago, and let me tell you, coming back for the second time, in 2018, was equally as good as the first time.
In 2017, we only got to play the multiplayer section. Although it was fun, it didn’t represent the full potential of the game. after all, we are playing Mount & Blade in order to enjoy the awesome, long and brutal single player, not to play online. For that reason, I was super hyped when I learned that we gonna play the single player campaign this time (in 2018), and not the multiplayer.
So, what exactly did we play in this year’s presentation?
In 2018, we got a full 30 minutes of sandbox gameplay, we could fight bandits, complete quests and even raid caravans and fight lords. Basically, they let us do whatever we wanna do within the time period. I personally, spent my 30 minutes run on fighting bandits, then realizing its too easy for me after a couple of battles. I asked the instructor if he can give me a harder battle, and he told me I could raid some caravans. Raiding caravans was also present in the previous games, so that wasn’t something new to me. but there were some new things.
As shown in the screenshot above, the player can recruit troops from cities and castles, not just from the village like the previous games in the series. On top of that, you can choose what kind of troops you want to recruit depends on your playstyle. For example, you have between 1 to 3 “troop selling” merchants in a city. One offers more infantry-based troops, the other more ranged orientated troops and etc. Later on, the instructor told me I could recruit higher tier troops directly from the cities as long as I have good relations with that particularity faction. therefore, more than faction likes you, the troops you can recruit are way more powerful.
Unfortunately, 30 minutes in a brand new Mound and Blade game could be compared to a grain of sand in an L.A. Beach. But in that 30 minutes, I discovered that you can become the king of your faction ( similar to the “Fire and Sword” mechanic), that you can become an outlaw, and also, and this is the most important thing, that the entire UI system got a huge upgrade. not just the UI, also the combat system is far superior from the one in “Warband”, and also, I learned that the game looks absolutely beautiful.
So, as I stated before, I really didn’t get the chance to play a lot of “Banerlord”, but let me tell you the simple and honest truth. the Mount and Blade presentation was the only presentation I didn’t want to be over.