Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord - All News
Tuesday - January 12, 2016
Mount & Blade II - Six Reasons to Be Excited
Improved sieges and combat, better bartering and NPC interaction, and vastly improved graphics, just to name a few. Here's why Gaming Respawn is excited about M&B II: Bannerlord.
Sieges in Mount & Blade: Warband weren’t the greatest, let’s be honest. We had a few different options to choose from but the bottomline was that there wasn’t enough variety in sieges, with each siege playing out the same as the one before it. It was more about brute force than anything else. However Bannerlord will revamp sieges completely by making them more strategic, giving players more freedom to choose how they wish to assault a castle or town as well as adding in actual tactics. There will be multiple entry points players can choose, meaning that you will no longer need pure brute force to win as well keeping each siege different.
Improved Combat and Battles
One of the best things about Warband was its huge battles and combat which on the whole, wasn’t too bad for a game of its size. While it wasn’t brilliant, it did the job. However we can’t wait to take part in more realistic battles. The revamped combat will link in nicely with the new sieges, however Taleworlds have promised that combat in Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord will have “up-close and personal medieval combat on a huge scale” which will also be “bigger, bloodier and more intense than ever before”. Sounds awesome right?
Monday - December 28, 2015
Mount & Blade II - Dev Blog 12
In M&B II's Dev Blog 12, TaleWorlds Entertainment covers the passage of time.
Thank you again, Couch, for tonight's news.
Bannerlord shares the setting of Calradia with Warband but takes place 200 years earlier. The map is also expanded to include regions further to the east and south of that in previous games, resulting in a map which is around three times larger. Land features and even some settlements from the previous games are recognisable. By sharing the same world, the two games become part of the lore of Mount & Blade in a wider sense. While the series' lore was kept to a minimum in Warband, being left to hints in dialogue, Bannerlord features its own storyline that will add some additional depth to the factions.
In addition to acting as the setting, providing the context for Mount & Blade's magnificent battles, the overworld map is also where a large chunk of gameplay lies. With Bannerlord, the approach is to provide more information to the player with the map itself and the HUD presented while travelling. Taking the icons as an example, it is now possible to see what a village produces by looking at its icon. These change dynamically over time to reflect different production facilities constructed in the village, or additions of buildings like castles. On the HUD, more information is presented to the player, including morale, food supplies, gold and more. We are currently restructuring the HUD to provide even more information without making it too overwhelming.
Characters and locations on the map make up what we call “parties”. All parties on the map, whether they are lords, bandits, hideouts or anything, have a function in the game's sandbox simulation of a feudal world. Here is a basic explanation of how the economy works:
-Villages produce goods based on what types of production they have in place (e.g. Sheep farms produce sheep, cheese, wool etc.)
-Peasants take goods produced in their village to sell in the local town by repeatedly travelling directly between the village and the town on the map.
-The raw materials are taken to towns and either consumed or processed into secondary goods (e.g. wool into clothes, sheep into meat) via workshops.
-Goods in towns are bought by caravans to be sold elsewhere for a higher price, caravans will assess the situation and try to maximise profit from their journey over the map.
When all of these steps are completed successfully, the prosperity of the settlements increases. What's interesting, though, is that because everything is connected in this way, disruption can be a very effective approach when dealing with an enemy or rival. A simple example is that raiding enemy villages or preventing peasants from making their journey to the local town impoverishes towns due to their lack of goods to process for trade. More indirect benefits can be received by, for instance, aiding a bandit group near to the fief of a rival noble from the same faction, trying to limit their income and gaining a leg over them in the faction standings. Since everything is simulated in this way, no matter what you do, it has a knock-on effect in the world. Manipulating this to your own ends is key to making progress in the game but AI Lords will also attempt to create problems for opponents, in an effort to better themselves.
The topography of the map is not entirely consistent with Warband, in fact Bannerlord's map is somewhat more mountainous. The effect of this is an increase in the number of choke points. It will be hard to avoid conflict, for instance, when traversing narrow passes through mountain ranges that may be riddled with ambush spots or enemy patrols. Tactically, the map offers many more options for controlling areas that serve as trade routes. Battles are often fought in the game to contest key choke points with the goal of securing passage for trade caravans and other parties. As a player, it is important to consider what kind of warfare you are likely to end up in, before sacrificing relations with a faction. If your speciality is skirmishing on foot over rough terrain, you might for example avoid engaging the Aserai, who will have higher mobility in the open desert.
The map is changed, not just by the activity of the player and NPCs but also by the passage of time. Changing seasons affect the weather and transform the landscape sending snow creeping south during winter. Significant gameplay effects, of the changing conditions, are felt in the effectiveness of different troop types. Cavalry and ranged units in particular will have a harder time in rain or snow. One major change from Warband is how time progresses; the yearly cycle has been shortened to twelve weeks, which adds more importance to the changing seasons and ageing of characters.
Friday - November 06, 2015
Mount & Blade II - Interview @ GamereactorTV
GamereactorTV has interviewed Armagan Yavus about the improvements in Bannerlord compared to Warbands and the development progress:
We caught up with TaleWorld Entertainment's Armagan Yavus and found out how development is coming along on Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord.
Saturday - October 03, 2015
Mount & Blade II - Interview @ Games Totalwars
Eye spotted this interview with with Armaganom Yavuz about Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord.
We present our new interview with Yavuz Armaganom about his new creation - Mount & Blade 2 Bannerlord II.
(For translation thanks Sasha Alexander from our group Vkontakte.)
Reporter: Could you tell us more about TaleWorlds? How great team?
Armagan: My wife and I founded the company in 2005, and over the years it grew, we now have more than 50 people. We are very passionate about games, and our core philosophy of creating games that we would like to play themselves.
Reporter: What about game development in Turkey?
Armagan: Development of a video game is a new sector for Turkey and there is still a shortage of experienced game developers. On the other hand, there are a lot of passionate young people who want to make a career in the gaming industry and we are fortunate to have the opportunity to work with a young and talented team.
Reporter: Why Bannerlord? Does the name "Bannerlord" subcontext?
Armagan: We probyvali different names, and we felt that it was the name of Bannerlord unikallnym. An important role will be played by the family and retainers. We'll talk about it soon! And, of course, as the game is now called Bannerlord, we were obliged to sdobavit editor banners.
Reporter: As the game will look like as a whole, it will be more like the first part, or it will be something new?
Armagan: The Bannerlord will be a lot of changes compared with the first part of our game, but the point of the game will be the same. We walked all over the mechanics of the game and the campaign tried to change the design of every detail, so that the campaign will igrkom smoothly plunge into the game world. In addition, there are significant improvements in animation and combat system. Improved graphics This is only onachalo.
Reporter: What is the most significant improvement in Bannerlord from the previous game?
Armagan: Frankly, we expect that the views on this will vary from player to player. We commit the same time every aspect of the game.
In general, one of our most important goals is exploring various aspects of the game.
A new game engine, New Horizon
Reporter: From the developer blog, we learned that you are using the "indoor game engine." On soklko it good for?
Armagan: We are very proud of our new game engine which we developed from the ground up for quite a long time for Bannerlord. It has a very easy to use and powerful editor, as well as the latest technology such as DX11, natural shading, aggressive use of multi-threading, and many others. Unfortunately, far too early to give exact figures, but it will be very well optimized, and we hope it will serve us and our community for many years.
Reporter: Many question arises on account of the size of the battle. I have confidence that my GTX660 can survive with 500 hundred people / horses in battle. Will work smoothly on medium game configurations?
Armagan: Performance is a priority for us, we want to see in our game, playing as many people as possible. We're trying to do that all the graphics settings can be changed, so have the players with less powerful configuration could also naslazhdatsya game. In addition, Bannerlord come a large number of performance improvements in comparison with the Warband, including the active use of multi-threading and re-design of some calculations.
We have not yet decided what will be the minimum requirements, but GTX660 definitely will play in the main settings.
Reporter: The game will be as friendly to the modders as the first part?
Armagan: Actually, we strive to modding was easier in general. This is one reason why the development of the game took longer than we expected, the system that we have come up with not only work well, but should also be easy for modders.
Reporter: The game will be more focused on multiplayer mode or single player? Will the repose of character development in the style of MMO and whether the multiplayer part of the arena or «Online campaigns"?
Armagan: We have a high standard that we strive vyderzhatv single-player and multiplayer games. For us it is not a matter of choosing one over the other. Both modes must conform to our expectations. Unfortunately, we can not disclose additional information on additional networking opportunities at this time, but the style of the game arena, of course, is not going anywhere. There will be no character development MMO style in the classical sense, as it significantly violates justice and sporting interest. However, players will be able to monitor your progress and feel without getting an unfair advantage.
Reporter: Bannerlord will be the same as the open world in the first part? If so, you increase the scale?
Armagan: The Vannerlord certainly have a map of the open world. We still decided to scale proportions, but I can say that the area of the card is approximately four times the Warband.
Reporter: Your team tries to bring more strategy to the game. Will it be done in Bannerlord in Total war?
Armagan: Bannerlord will have a large number of improvements in the management. AI It will also be greatly improved. The main focus of the game is still on a dive in his own character, so the battle will never feel like in a conventional strategy.
Tuesday - August 11, 2015
Mount & Blade II - Gameplay Features Explained
In their blog #11 TaleWorlds explains the gameplay features of Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord in great detail:
As many of you may have noticed, we have been rather busy! Last week, we visited Cologne, Germany to attend Gamescom, the largest game conference in Europe. While there, we took appointments to demonstrate some Bannerlord gameplay to the world's media. Along with this, we released a few videos which were used as part of our presentation.
It has been great to see the excited response to the clips and we're very pleased that your feedback has been so positive! Of course, the game is still very much in development and so we had to make decisions about what to put in the videos and how it would be presented.
Here, we have compiled some of the highlights, along with a small smattering of new footage, which we want to present to you the community, along with a little explanation about some of the features. [...]
Wednesday - August 05, 2015
Mount & Blade II - Gamescom 2015 Gameplay Videos
The Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord gameplay videos at Rock, Paper, Shotgun:
Tuesday - July 28, 2015
Mount & Blade II - Debut at Gamescom 2015 @ NicheGamer
Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord will be revealed at the Gamescom 2015 in Cologne:
TaleWorlds Entertainment will be revealing Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord for the first time at Gamescom 2015 in Cologne. Media will be invited to attend private viewing sessions of live gameplay from the game in its current state. Video and additional information about the game will be released to the general public concurrently, satiating some of the massive player demand for information on the new entry to the franchise.
The series, which has until now accumulated over 6 million unit sales, is a favourite among players, much loved for its refreshing sandbox gameplay that centres around player freedom. This next instalment takes place 200 years before Warband but brings the series forward by greatly expanding gameplay in all areas and offering much improved visuals.
Saturday - April 04, 2015
Mount & Blade II - Developers Blog #10
TaleWorlds Entertainment posted the tenth developer update for their upcoming sequel Mount & Blade II Bannerlord. The update focuses on materialistic approaches.
Hello all Mount & Blade players, curious individuals and accidental Mount & Blade blog readers! We hope you are having a wonderful 2015, so far and that you enjoyed our previous blog by Finn Seliger, covering the music of Bannerlord.
This time, the blog comes right from us and we're going to be touching on an interesting new feature for the single player, something we know a lot of you want to hear about.
One of the areas of our development focus is improving player interaction with NPCs and other factions and making this part of the game feel deeper and more meaningful. In order to facilitate this, early in the development we decided to use a dedicated bartering screen. We have been working on this new feature for some time now and it has matured to a point where it adds a lot to gameplay and has many interesting details we can talk about.
As shown in the screenshot, the bartering screen is fairly self explanatory. The right hand side presents a list of things the player can offer towards the deal, and the left hand side shows what the player can demand from the other party. This is a simple system that makes deals easy to create and view, with potential offerings grouped together for ease of use.
Thursday - January 22, 2015
Mount & Blade II - Developer Update #9
TaleWorlds Entertainment has just posted the ninth developer diary for their upcoming sequel Mount & Blade II Bannerlord. This update focuses on the creation of Bannerlord's soundtrack:
Finn Seliger, Periscope Studio - With the soundtrack of Mount & Blade 2 one of our main goals was to create a characteristic music piece for each faction – a kind of hymn – that should reflect the faction in terms of culture and attitude.
Having six different factions, the first step was to identify those characteristic instruments. Together with Torsten Stoye and his band Frölich Geschray (www.geschray.de) we were having two great sessions trying out different ethnic instruments. The samples that we were recording during the sessions turned out to be pure inspiration for the future compositions and helped a lot in finding the right tone for each faction.
See here for more, including pictures, audio samples, more information, and even a screenshot of a scene in Bannerlord.
Sunday - September 28, 2014
Mount & Blade II - Developer Update #8
TaleWorlds Entertainment next development update for Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord is a new video that shows off how the game engine works.
For Bannerlord Developer Blog 8, we've decided to put together a little video! Entitled “Engine Power”, we're offering you a glimpse of some of the features of our new engine and why we're making it. We hope you enjoy it!
Saturday - August 30, 2014
Mount & Blade II - Developer Update #7
TaleWorlds Entertainment has finally posted the next development update for Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord. This time the topic is Imperial Declines.
Mount&Blade II: Bannerlord Blog 7 - Imperial Declines
Hi, all! For our seventh installment of the Bannerlord developer blogpost, we'd like to talk a little about our plans for factions, and how this fits into our evolving thinking about Mount&Blade as a sandbox game.
Warband's factions were based on existing medieval societies. We added a few in-game details about their backgrounds, but we didn't try to create an over-arching story. The factions' semi-historical nature meant players could use their imaginations and historical knowledge to fill in the details of these societies and make their own stories -- as we saw in many great AARs. A player who liked the Vikings, for example, might have chosen to fight for the Nords, maybe even model the character on a fictional or historical Norse warrior. However, many players felt Mount&Blade would be more immersive if the factions had more background and the game had an emotionally grabbing narrative hook, so we're going to try do that while still keeping the sandbox spirit.
Thursday - May 08, 2014
Mount & Blade II - Developer Update #6
TaleWorlds Entertainment has posted the next development update for Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord. This time we get a look at how they bring the NPCs to life.
Developer Blog 6 - Astounding Squirms
Players of Mount&Blade, idle passers and intrigued discoverers, Happy Friday to all. This little blog is about our progress making the game Mount&Blade II: Bannerlord. It doesn't cover everything we do but it tells you a little bit here and there which some may find of interest. “Never make a 6th album”, say the cynics. “Stop after the successful 5th!” - hogwash, we'll continue this blog until the sun rises in the west and sets in the east... or maybe just while we're working on Bannerlord.
We get messages from a lot of players saying they want to see more immersion and believability in the game. One feature we have planned for Bannerlord is facial animations. For a very long time, faces in games were pretty much completely motionless. There are various studies about the importance of non-verbal communication (facial expressions, body language etc.) in communication as a whole, including the much debated and often quoted “7%, 38%, 55%” figure for words spoken, tone of voice and physical behaviour respectively. We aren't psychologists though and that isn't a debate we need to enter into. The general consensus is that they are pretty important.
Monday - March 31, 2014
Mount & Blade II - Player Survey
TaleWorlds Entertainment has a new post on the Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord website with a new Player Survey to collect more data to help develop the game.
Hello Mount&Blade players of all demographics!
What does demographic mean? Why is that important? I don't know, maybe no one does but here at TaleWorlds we're looking for answers or... at least responses.
Meaningless drivel aside TaleWorlds is looking to collect some data about the players of Mount&Blade, with a good old fashioned survey. We feel like we have a pretty good handle on our players' likes and dislikes already because you like to make them known to us through forums, twitters and facebooks but have decided that getting results for a survey might be a nice way for us to get some of that as cold hard data.
If you have a spare few minutes then it would be great if you could help us out by filling out the forms and checking the boxes at this link: http://www.taleworlds.com/survey
All of the data is completely anonymous and so doesn't require you to enter any personal information whatsoever. Thank you in advance!
Saturday - March 15, 2014
Mount & Blade II - Developer Update #5
TaleWorlds Entertainment has posted the next development update for Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord. This time we get a look at how motion capture works in the game.
Happy Friday to avid readers and passers by. It has been a little while since our last Bannerlord Blog. In this entry we are once more decreasing the number of unblogged rooms in the office by one. Although some animations are made and polished in various parts of the office, many are captured in our very own motion capture studio near the main door of our offices. The animation hub and thus the associated blog room for this episode.
Sunday - January 26, 2014
Mount & Blade II - Developer Update #4
TaleWorlds Entertainment posted the next development update for Mount & Blade II.
Happy New Year to those operating on the Gregorian Calender and a round, warm hello to all. “Blog!”, they cried and it was written. 2013 has been a year of growth for us at TaleWorlds and with each passing month, work intensifies on Bannerlord. The new year has already started with the achievement of 100,000 likes on our official Facebook page. It feels like a great milestone and we'd like to thank everyone for all the support. Now let us tell you a little bit more about making Bannerlord.
For this week, focus will be drawn on the other half of “Team 1” (see Blog 3 for an explanation), developers of the combat and physics aspects of the engine, as well as web development. The room is calm and quiet, closest to the main door of all the development teams. Mount&Blade is arguably most well known for the originality of its combat system, so in developing the next full installment in the series, it is naturally an area which receives a lot of attention during design discussions and testing. A constant work of refinement. Visits to and from the engine team are a norm and work is done closely with the animators, whose role in the combat system is a vital one.
Sunday - December 22, 2013
Mount & Blade II - Developer Update # 3
TaleWorlds Entertainment has posted the next development update for Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord.
Mount&Blade II: Bannerlord Developer Blog 3 - Unexpected Parties
To all interested and uninterested parties, let it be known that we at TaleWorlds are making a new game, by the name of Mount&Blade II: Bannerlord. It is the next in the Mount&Blade series and a prequel to Mount&Blade Warband. This is the third entry in our Developer Blog, talking about making the game to whoever wants to listen. Thisweek we're talking about the campaign team, developers of the game's single player mechanics and gameplay. The team formerly known as “Team 3”...
It is tradition in the blog, to discuss the relative location of the teams' rooms in the office. The campaign team is directly opposite the engine team (mentioned in blog 2) and again very central. This is equally as useful as it is for the engine team but not because the campaign team receive a large number of wanderers, it's because they do the wandering. By focusing directly on the gameplay itself, oftentimes additions or changes are needed from the engine team, the artists or whoever to make a planned game mechanic work. It doesn't matter if it's a tap on the shoulder, a lean from the side or an instant message; a campaign team member always wants something from you. A variation of a map icon perhaps, or a piece of your soul.
Sunday - December 15, 2013
Mount & Blade II - Developer Update # 2
TaleWorlds Entertainment has a new development update about painted plants. Yes you read that right the first update was about hair, and now plants.
Mount&Blade II: Bannerlord Developer Blog 2 - Painted Plants
As a preamble to this blog entry, we would like to extend our sincere thanks for the incredible response to the previous blog. We expected excitement and we know (because you rarely take a break from telling us, which is great!) that you want information from Bannerlord but the feedback certainly exceeded our expectations. The blog was our most liked, shared and far reaching post on Facebook, the forums went crazy (more so than usual), on Reddit we had a great interest on /r/mountandblade as well as reaching the front page of /r/Games and on Twitter... well predictably everyone had a lot of fun with caps lock.
Avid blog followers and newcomers to the series, in this, our second blog, we're talking about our team of engine programmers and their role in our development process. It is fitting that the engine team sits in the centre of the office, developing the core of the game. The room is generally busy with the comings and goings of demanding developers, the hardware is powerful and the attitude is relaxed and open. Inside dwell the gremlin exterminating gremlins. The light masters. The engine engineers.
Thursday - November 28, 2013
Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord - Developer Post
Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord has a new developer update talking about the art department, and how the game handles hair.
One of the current focuses of the artists is on character hair. Hair is a great challenge for all games; simulating realistic movement and texture when you have so many individual strands moving separately is incredibly resource intensive, when done in real time. Some games use certain techniques to improve the simulation, while saving resources but in a game like Mount&Blade, where you may have 100s of characters on screen, the balancing act becomes significantly more difficult. Our current working method is: a textured base (something like a hair coloured swimming cap) with groups of hair strands (rendered onto polygons with alpha channels) moving in various directions to give a natural look. This adds more depth than the method used in warband, which relied on the texture to give depth to the hair. You can see the difference below (Left: Warband, Right: Mount&Blade II: Bannerlord):
It goes without saying but what you're seeing is the game in its current state and the hair will likely see further changes and improvements. That means, if there's something you don't like about it, feel free to let us know via an ALL CAPS tweet with several exclamation marks but there's a good chance we're not completely happy with it either... just yet. The most important thing is that it's something which can be used en masse without heavily impacting on performance, a possiblilty achieved by the strength of our new game engine.
Sunday - September 29, 2013
Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord - First Glimpse
TaleWorlds Entertainment offers the first glimpse of Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord with some new screenshots, and artwork.
The once-mighty Calradic Empire is in a state of decline. Warlike tribes have seized swaths of its territory. Client kingdoms have declared their independence. The Emperor has died without leaving an heir, leaving three jealous factions to scramble for power. Mercenary companies, bandit lords and nomads hover on the sidelines like vultures waiting for a meal.
A hero who can master the art of single combat, of leading armies in battle, of plotting ambushes and raids, and of exploiting the rivalries of noble houses and tribal clans may be able to unite this Empire -- or, alternately, to deal it the final blow that sends it crashing down. Will Calradia experience one final sunset of imperial glory, or slip into a night of chaos before a new age dawns?
Information aboutMount & Blade II: Bannerlord
SP/MP: Single + MP
Voice-acting: Partially voiced
Regions & platforms
· Platform: PC
· Expected at 2016-10-01
· Publisher: Taleworlds