Mount & Blade 2

This game has a genuine problem that will not go away easily. At its core it’s a 7/10 experience

Content of the article: "This game has a genuine problem that will not go away easily. At its core it’s a 7/10 experience"

If you look at Warband from a perspective of just the core gameplay foundation the game is an 8/10. If you dare excuse the limitations of its development and some of the quinks and quirks the game is a 9/10. A superb, genuinely awesome game that just lets you feel like you are really living out a medieval power fantasy. The main design choice that makes that game so great is the sheer amount of freedom you get to do whatever the fuck you want, given that you have the power to do it. I'd say it's biggest weakness is that the late game becomes a chore simulator where you just have to slowly whittle down the other kingdoms which isn't that fun or intuitive to be honest, but the start of the game through mid game will never get old for me.

Bannerlord doesn't have any core strength that makes it stand out. Seriously. If you really compile all of the individual features and observe the experience as a whole it's a 7/10, definitely not bad by any measure, but the 8 years of development + such an early beta genuinely knock it down a point or two. The issue here however, is exactly what I just mentioned, it doesn't have a standout gameplay aspect in the same way that warband does. In fact, it's really done so much in its power to stop the player from just having fun it's genuinely kind of sad sometimes. You start the game and instead of having the full freedom to just fuck off and do what you want, you have to do chores and establish a clan first. If you want to have a kingdom you gotta finish an annoying sequence of quests that suck balls. The clan one is the real kicker, it almost kind of treats you like an idiot.

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"We have this clan feature that we are going to force on you from the start and relate quests to it that will both severely slow you down and pretty much force you to discover certain gameplay mechanics you'd have figured out on your own eventually."

Just like, why? Let me play the fucking game. Why do I have to run around for hours just to collect enough renown to have a strong clan, one that, mind you, you can't do jack shit without? The thing that irks me the most about this, by far is the fact that there are so many hard boundaries you can't cross. Warband didn't give a shit, if you had the army for it you could take a town day 1 and just start a kingdom. Bannerlord on the other hand outright forces you to first develop your clan, then painstakingly build your army, then join a kingdom, then only when you finish that piece of shit quest do you get your own. Problems you can excuse for warband because they simply didn't have the resources to fix or change ARE STILL IN BANNERLORD LIKE 1 FOR 1 HOLY FUCKING SHIT. The bandit hideouts suck cock, the villages feel more like map markers than actual inhabited settlements, there is literally fuck all you can do by walking around in an average town/castle/village. Castles are still literally just map markers, more so maybe than villages. Except now there is more bullshit you gotta deal with, why can't I have more businesses? Literally what is this, Karl Marx popping up and inhibiting capitalism? Making sure players wouldn't earn TOO MUCH money whoa god forbid someone might just have fun. Also the new herd penalty mechanic? What? Are you guys on drugs or something? It's like, you saw this one gameplay mechanic, if you got the money to buy a lot of animals, you can solve your inventory issues, you know a perfectly normal and logical progression of gameplay? Then you make a massive penalty for having too many? WHAT? Just like, make it more difficult or add something else that that will restrict the amount in an organic and dynamic way. How about having to feed the animals a shit ton of food, making it so you have to carry around a lot of grain to actually keep a herd fed? There's gotta be SOME other solution to this, no?

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I feel like the core issue here is the approach they have been taking to developing this game as a "one save" experience. Like a game where you start a single campaign and play it for a 1000 hours. So then just to make sure you wouldn't, god forbid, skip over some gameplay, or god forbid, leave place for another playthrough that will be a little different, you gotta go through ALL of that shit in one go, even if they have to literally force you to discover mechanics like companions or whatever. I feel like it's just so fucking cowardly, you know? It does take some balls to let the players explore everything on their own, but you will never have a real 10/10 game if you don't. Taleworlds, please just let people do what they want. I know you motherfuckers gotta be reading everything on these subreddits or at least one employee down the line spends his time mindlessly scrolling on these subs to see what people think.

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Well here you go, my personal opinion that I think many people will agree with:

"Please, just let me play the game on my own and do what I want. Thank you."


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