Beginner guide and others Guides/Strategy/gameplay

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Sergeant at Arms

- Beginner Guide (autor: blackitalian) - Below

- Trial By Fire (A Beginners Guide to 1.35) (autor: jecjackal) -,187876.0.html

- Character Creation Guide (autor: Disconnected) -,155372.msg4550556.html#msg4550556

- Character Creation Info (autor: Landwalker) -

- Combat guide - how to beat most things with little effort (autor: sepulchar) -,170534.0.html

- Formations -,155372.msg4400019.html#msg4400019

- Good music to listen to while playing -,136923.0.html

- Trading and Enterprises Tips v1.2 -,137594.0.html

- Tactics on the battlefield -,137576.0.html


- Companion like and dislike -,136511.0.html

- Beowulf Quest [spoilers] -,197218.0.html

- Character Creation - What does what and what is the results...[spoilers] -,138018.0.html

- About bows -,138477.0.html

- Salt Mine -,135862.0.html

- How exactly does honor work? -,140036.0.html

- companion interactions off -,46630.0.html

- Kill captured lords -,137199.msg3298858.html#msg3298858

- Supply Wagon -,138298.0.html

- Gae Bolga quest [spoilers] -,147552.0.html

- Realistic Casualties, some help understanding -,147257.0.html

- Tactics on the battlefield -,137576.15.html

- How do money -,151889.0.html

- Change Player Faction Color -,149007.0.html

- Dark Ages Campaign Blog  -

- How to increase morale?  -,154329.0.html

- Courtship secret meetings. How get a wife  -,155012.0.html

- The Four Religions in Brytenwalda  -,166266.0.html

- About Honor  -,169838.0.html

- Largest stable companion parties in Brytenwalda (spoilers) -,183844.0.html

- Siege Tutorial (spoilers) -,184731.msg4475464.html#msg4475464

- Polices, what it change -,196065.0.html

- Companion Starting Skills -,214605.msg5131015.html#msg5131015

- List of possible skill bonuses -,254229.0.html

- How to recover vassals when taken prisoner? -,263719.0.html


This guide contains spoilers!!!!      edited on: 5/24/11  (another option)

This is an attempt to put some of scattered info in one easy to read place, rather than have to scan through what feels like hundreds of topics and replies. Many of you will find this info basic and obvious. This guide is not meant to be an absolute authoritative. Rather some good suggestions. FYI, my first ever guide. Please read the manual as well, lots of good basic info. Remember there is no couching in this mod
other views:

Take your time when playing the game, there is no time limit. Early preparation leads to late domination. Trust me, I'm wishing I had done these things so now I'm re-tooling late game. And getting raped on all sides.

Character creation

story:  First off, if you're into role play go with what will give you the best immersion. For those more concerened with a good start I recommend: Male or female (female has advantage having a lord for a husband), race of your choice, Noble, spearman's apprentice, goods peddler, forced out of home, roman catholic (can be changed in game). Select your standard (this cannot be changed). ***I recommend choosing "allow me to quit without saving." You can always save on every quit if you so deem and it allows for when the real world interrupts your game. Keeping only one saved game is another way help "keep yourself honest." However, it's a game so feel free to keep several different save points.

    Best to set your self up as a warrior/leader and use your companions to cover all the other skills.

    attributes: Focus on getting str to 15 first then agi to 9. Later you will need int 10 and char 12. Late game you will need to get str and agi much higher. str 24 and agi 18 is a good warrior.

      skills:  Get shield to 2, then iron flesh to 4, then power strike to 4. Depending on your story you may need to put 1 point in riding. let your companions specialize in the group skills. Bumping inventory to 2 is very helpful as you level up.  mid-late game you will need leadership at 4 and prisoner management at 4. Persuasion at 3. The holy relic quest will get you a book that puts this +1. You will need a point in trade, later you can have a companion specialize in it.

      Proficiencies/Weapons: Put points into one handed and later either two handed (high damage, not spectacular reach) or polearm (not very high damage but a lot of reach).
While the polearm allows you to use a shield, I feel like a two hander is nice to bring out when you need heavy damage.
Archery is gimp at this point in history, and crossbows are rare and poor for the fast paced combat. Throwing weapons are powerful, but they run out too quick. Shields block very well against archery and throwing, I recommend going 1h/shield all the way. I prefer sword for reach and speed. I've recently dueled my elite soldiers and found no difference in damage. My 1h is over 300. Any damage done with pierce damage weapon I was able to duplicate with sword. Though I have read pierce should reduce armor by 50%. But I don't see significant damage difference. See:
Starting town: Ireland has a lot of bandits that may be easier to beat and skill up on but Britain has better trade.  Go Britain and get rich, also for finding companions.
Town start. After fighting the thief, choose the first option with the merchant and get 100 scillings.

Another option:

companions: under character creation because you should decide on what type of companions you will have before you begin if you can.

  selection: I recommend reading the companion thread   Actually, this topic got very confusing. I go with the selection in the middle of page 2 that allows looting, minus frioc and ceawlin <<they cause fights and you don't want to lose a party member right after you buy them that expensive armor. Domnail is now Matui Turtail I have no conflict and can raid towns to my hearts content. My choice is here   Gear: I recommend using them as heavy calvary. I arm them with heavy armor,a good horse, a sword,a shield, and 2 slots of javelins or 2 slots of throwing spears later. M&B is strange about how the ai switches between weapons. Better to be great at one weapon for companions, rather than mediocre at 2. However, early game they all started with spears due to lack of money and skill. Then they got axes or picks from looting, but kept the spear till mid game. I'm a huge fan of shields, your companions will need a defense from missiles which are deadly to anyone without a shield. Comically harmless when equipped with a good shield. When you become wealthy get them the special armor and helmet. Your companions can become elite calvary that never die! Also, the javelins give them a range option and do good damage to shields.
  skills:  I focus on getting their skills up to be good warriors. Decent armor requires Str at 15 and at least Agi 6 for shield/riding/weapon master/athletics). You can then decide if you want to boost warrior skills or the other bonus skills.

Special FYI's....(boot camp)

1. At start of game go to camp, select options and look over mod options. Select what works best for you.2. You can be injured, this will cause stat losses. These injuries heal after about 30 days. It has been reported that injuring yourself before a previous injury heals may cause the previous stat loss to be permanent. If someone can test and confirm if this is true, then I will update.
3. Morale:
  • Clerics/pagans can boost morale at 200 schillingsper 2 morale boost. But you must capture them to get them. Or you can use the ones in certain castles.
  • Bard songs boost morale, 109 charges 1k schillings, don't buy it.
  • Camp woman boost morale at 450 schillings per 4boost. Though it says 500. Also once you upgrade them they no longer offer their services.
  • Variety of food boosts morale.
  • Rest, can be turned on or off.
  • Winning battles or raiding towns.
  • NOT running out of food or money.
  • Random events will increase and decrease morale. Watch for them. Some of the events have you make a choice. Eat the mushrooms?
4. Spies will increase how much the people like you for each day they stay in a village/town. And of course they can sabotage the defenders or they can cause unrest and hurt the towns income.
5. You can cross between the two islands without your own ship, will cost you a little money, but a lot of morale.
6. To find the merchants that sell "special" gear, talk to the barkeep. Then go to that town and walk around till you can find that merchant. Also there is a chance to win them in tournaments  and ever so rarely from battle drops.
7. The mail armor with wolf fur and the more expensive helm from the armor merchant are the best in game.
8. Do not buy widowmaker sword. It's stats are less than what you can buy from a regular merchant.
9. Honor: High honor will win you respect of lords and allow you to recruit them. Low honor will allow you to recruit bandits and such. I have found no advantage to low honor. Also, high honor and helping villagers will cause some villages to rebel and join your cause after you become king.
10. Salt mines: Major hit to honor, but can be a good source of income. You lose honor for entering the mines and when you place slaves to work there. You will have to decide for yourself if it's worth it.
11. Lord relationships: You can boost your relationships with lords several ways;
  • Do tasks for them.
  • Assist them in battle.
  • Rescue them from an enemy army or prison.
  • Marry into the family.
  • Send gifts.
  • Release them after beating them in battle.
11. Renown: Renown is the all important stat. It boost kings desire to have you as a vassal, allows for a bigger army, and allows you to recruit nobles from towns. There are a seemingly endless ways to boost your renown. Generally acting honorable and winning battles does the trick. You can purchase it through bard songs or sending out religious emissaries. Random events can also help it.12.If you are at war with 2 or more nations at the same time, then you will lose 3 relation points will all of your nobles every week!13. The more a large town likes you, the better the recruits. Also the more a town likes you, large or small, the more recruits you get. High renown will allow you to recruit high end recruits.14. Horses in inventory increase map speed, type does not matter so keep the cheap ones. Also the mules and donkeys increase looting and inventory management.

Early Game
    If you started out as goods peddler, sell your ware and you will have good starting money. Trade is key to early wealth. Trade secret
oxford always seems to need salt, buy salt at seals-ey and lundenwic. But watch for frank and pirate patrols! More info at: (read throgh the posts as some info has changed but still a good reference),137594.0.html
Travel about trading and finding your companions. Your fist goal is to find you companions, second get a winery. You suck in the beginning so focus on getting money so you and your companions can get some basic gear, and a winery, you need winery's!!. They will all need horses early on which is incredibly expensive but will allow you to move faster on the map. Otherwise anything can catch you and rape you. Winery's are important because when you start your kingdom, you will need steady income. You need at least 6 winery's before you make your bid to rule. Wish I had more in hindsight, actually think I have less and it sucks. You need to get a ship your army grows to about 30-50. Also you will need a wagon. I never send the wagon out, rather us it as extra space for loot. Also a good place to keep your spies and cleric/pagan priest. Kill the theows in early game, they seem to disappear later as more powerful enemies start to patrol.  Questing for lords is recommended to build a relationship with lords. I didn't and now they all hate me lol. But that can be rectified through gifts once you make your bid for king. Also your honor will take hit early on, so freeing some of the captives can reduce or even reverse it.
Early tactics:
Get a small band of men that starts with companions and about 12 calvary. You will be a warrior-chieftain. Find your companions first while trading and building wealth, then get more calvary. Get in there and fight! Try and lead the enemy to the open plains and out of forests and hills. This is a good tactic actually through the whole game. Crush the very small bands of bandits. Avoid Dena pirates and franks! These are elite/heavy infantry, and can crush you easily. Grow your army to about 30-50 after you get your first winery. Get your companions set up for fighting. Early on calvary is king in small skirmishes. Recruiting captives (then release if they don't fit your war band) will allow you to build renown quickly. More renown, larger force you can have and better morale. You start to get a morale hit after you have 50% of you ability to lead. The penalty will increase as you get closer to 100%. In mid-late game this won't matter. Early it does. Also don't burn/bury the dead unless you are in a secluded place. Fighting from camp is very hard. Men are scattered, you have a reduced force and if the enemies over run the camp they get some of your loot!! If caught call all men to you and engage the enemy before they reach the tents. As you grow your army past the first 12 calvary and companions, you will have to use infantry due to the cost of calvary. You may want to stay small and head over to Ireland and fight the bandits there. They are mostly small bands and easy to beat. This will get you some gear and XP.
Please notice the seamless connection between trade and having an army. No money and your men will desert (failure to pay debts is a morale hit, morale gets low and men desert. And angers some companions). Respect it. Trade. Good way to explore, meet lords, and find companions as well.
Mid GameYou are at mid game when; you have at least 2 winery's, a ship, a wagon, 60 men, and your companions are not in starting cloth shirts!
You must now decide, trader or raider? Yep you have to choose. You can still trade when raiding but raiding is a different lifestyle so to speak. lords will hate you but the money is great. I chose to raid Pict land (cait). Later I joined a faction and Cait became neutral to me, but the lords don't forget! However the money was much needed. And, allowed me to not have to travel all across the map. You can only raid if you choose the companion set up that allows it. Otherwise your companions will leave. After getting 2 more winery's, join a faction, I recommend a small one for 2 reasons. First, you don't want to make a large faction stronger, this will make them harder to defeat later. Secondly, you can perform a coup d'etat easily on a small faction. However you may find it harder to get a wife in a small faction. But who needs them this game has the worlds oldest profession! Plus you get a set of retainers as king. But a wife does have her own advantages. So get married if you can or care to. Mid game is more about fighting. Once you join a faction fight your enemies relentlessly. You and your companions will get good xp. Also go after the Dena pirates and franks for some great equipment drops. I also recommend recruiting the Dena/Frank captives rather than selling them. 30 ship captains are unstoppable!!!.  Fighting for your faction will be more about making yourself stronger, than capturing territories for your king. At this stage you should pick up companions that don't fit your group, speak with them and send them out to increase your right to rule, then disband them when they return. This will piss off the king, screw him.
Mid tactics:
Roaming the map and freeing lords from prisons will net you some friends when you become king. However, this may be tough depending on your level and gear. You will need to act more as a General and less warrior.  You can't command your troops if your knocked out!! Order your men around and kill the fleeing enemy for xp. You may need to put a special label on a couple of your companions so they stay with you through the fight. Calvary charging can take you out in one pass, even without couching. So these battle field body gaurds work to block charging calvary. The enemy also knows enough to try and get behind you. When ever I get taken out it's after I lose my horse and from calvary charging me from behind.
    Now heavy infantry is king. From here on out TBH.  Calvary do you no good when sieging a town.  However you will have many open field battles. So 20%, 30% max calvary, rest heavy infantry. Archers are really only good for town defence IMO. And really shield infantry are still better. Milite/veteran warriors are more expensive than faction specific. But, but they are faction neutral (no morale penalties) and fight very well. Also when you get a fief, you can keep going back to it and click garrison, take out the farmers (leave the woman lol). The farmers become guards (decent for town defense, you would be surprised), spearmen (so so shieldwall men), to milite/veteran warriors (good heavy infantry).  A third of my field army are these. Faction specific heavy infantry are better equipped, but harder to get. I get my heavy infantry from captives mostly. I keep very few light infantry, a few med infantry (will be more so in beginning of mid-game, less at end of mid-game) most heavy infantry. Calvary, remember your companions are your elite calvary. If you keep any missile troops, label them as infantry and keep them in the shield wall for protection. Soldier wives are best IMO, they come from the peasant woman that I told you to leave  :shock: .  You will have to decide if you want missile troops. Regular archers suck, but soldiers wives can fight as light/med infantry.
***Also note at this point you should be burying most of the dead. Just be aware of how close other enemies are before the battle.
Advance mid tactics:
open field:
    Hammer and anvil, every time. It's time tested and what all armies do, even modern ones today. I keep my calvary mounted, even in forests. You want to be able to chase down the fleeing enemy. When the first wave of enemies break order your infantry to hold. If you let them spread out across the battle field. They will potentially get slaughtered. Together they stand, apart they fall, hold that shield wall! I mad a rhyme lol. You may need to call the calvary back and simply repeat each tactic below that fits your situation. Please note, that if you start on attack, you may possibly take a defensive tactic when the next wave of enemies come. Depends on whether the enemies "thinks" it can take you on. Number and type of troops determines this. Also often you can advance alone (with a small group is better) and entice the enemy to charge. Then follow the tactic below.
  • On attack: Advance with all the troops on the follow me command, if the enemy is on a hill try an find a slope with the lowest incline. When close, have your infantry charge, then circle around and have calvary charge from behind/side. Often you may find enemy calvary guarding the rear and will force a side charge.  Failing to charge the enemy calvary first will cause you to be charged, the results could be devastating.  Hopefully leading to nothing more than you  and most of your calvary being de-horsed.
  • On defense: Find a hill if you can. Put infantry into a shield wall. If mostly infantry enemy order them closer. If calvary charge leave normal, then close once the calvary get stuck inside.  Circle with calvary and smash or take out enemy calvary first if present. Crush retreating enemy with calvary then regroup behind infantry shield wall. Then repeat. Leave your infantry in shield wall. When out of calvary, hold infantry in shield wall. Do not chase calvary with infantry. Let them charge the shield wall. Some times you will have to advance in formation to entice. Heavy infantry can kill as much as 10 to 1. I recommend all heavy infantry when you can afford it.
  • On siege: Get a spy in if you have any. Towns are easier for spies to infiltrate. There are two option if you get a spy in. Sabotage the food supplies and wait out the siege or poison the well. If your gonna wait out the siege sabotage the food, each time you do it cuts the siege in half, on the last day poison the well. The defenders will sally forth when out of food. Take up a defensive stance and let them come to you, you can't capture the fort on a sally, so focus on maintaining the siege. After you succesfully defend your siege, you must take the walls on the reduced enemy force (you will also gain some tactic advantage) or abandon the siege. If the defending force is not very large at the beginning of the siege, poison the water and take the walls once you get the poison well successful message. The latter is my favorite way to take a town. Knocking a force down to less than a hundred men, I've even seen it get to 0. They will gain some men in the time it takes to build ladders but not enough. A large force can some times be lowered after several well attacks. ......Early on it is too dangerous to lead your men up the ladders. Let them do the dirty work. Later when you have leveled up and gotten some good armor/weapons, lead the charge (put men on follow, then charge when you reach the bottom of the ladder or you may get knocked off by your own men!), A warcry will open enough space for your men to get a foot hold. If you see one side of the ladder has less men attack in that direction. Help clear it and again let the men do the dirty work.
  • On defense: As mentioned before, guards do surprisingly well in castle defense. But they will still need heavy infantry support. You will still be relatively poor when you get your first town/castle. So expect most of the defense force to be guards in your town/castle. Or really a hod-podge of troops you captured. When the enemy charges up the ladder have your infantry/calvary on charge as well. Stand at the left side of the ladder with your sword and shield out. The shield will auto block most projectiles, the enemy will be engaging the troops to their front, hack away, but watch your health. If it gets low, get out of the way and stand at the re-spawn point, let your troops fight and hope for the best. I have fought through 3 or 4 waves of enemies to see my force dwindle, so at the last minute as the last few men fight I hit tab and retreated. Ever so rarely, if you have caused enough damage to the enemy force, they will not attack again and hopefully leave quickly. [/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l][/l]

  • Late gameyou are at late game when; you have the ability to command at least 150 troops (200 is better), 6 winery's (8 is better), you and your companions are pimped out (good gear). These are minimum requirements. Doing so before make a tough late game.Note: I didn't set a right to rule minimum or a time limit. This is intentional.
    Time to be king! You may wish to wait a little later than what I have set as standards. It all depends on your game. if there are a lot of small kingdoms you have a little time. If they seem to be disappearing you may want to act now. Fighting large kingdoms can be frustrating. I recommend taking a position that you feel you can defend easily. Choose your town with caution. There are two options:
                  First is to turn on your king if you're a vassal. I recommend emptying out your most profitable fort/town and place the troops in the wagon slot. Renounce your allegiance by speaking to your king. Then go and take back your town. You may need to attack that factions wagon or peasants to lower status low enough to be able to siege. I don't recommend attacking a lord because you will hopefully be able to recruit them.
                    Second is to renounce your oath to a king, and finding a town that fits your liking. And simply take it.
          Now you're king. Be sure to appoint a prominent noble as your minister, unless you have a wife, then she acts as minister. Then hire all the retainers. Speak to them all and learn what each can do for you. You will eventually need them all to do something. It may take you a while to attract lords to your a cause. Fear not. Fight for your new capitol. You may lose and have to recapture it....repeatedly.

    to be continued.....

    Work in progress. Thank you.
Great Guide, very helpful for rockies.... but I dont share some strategies. Rather than gathering money by traiding and stuff and building a factory I would fight bandits and do quest to citys and lords to gain suficient reputation to join a faction and get a fief. That gives you a decent income to sustain your army and care about becoming rich, but they are different strategies thats all :razz:
Actually your first fief would be a small village which does not payout regularly and little at that. Most likely it will be raided regularly... Where as you will need about 2000 schillings a week to sustain a small army. Also it allows you to keep the profit from all your fighting/raiding.
Excellent guide. Keep it up!
  selection:,136511.msg3284032.html#msg3284032 . (yep I cheated and used a link.) Actually this topic got confusing. I go with the selection in the middle of page 2 that allows looting, minus frioc and ceawlin <<they cause fights and you don't want to lose a party member right after you buy them that expensive armor. I have no conflict and can raid towns to my hearts content.

You can link the specific post if you want. If you wanted to link to this post just click the text "Re: Companion like and dislike
" that appears above « Reply #23 on: September 29, 2010, 05:09:54 AM » and copy that url to your post.
Nice guide, all I do whilst starting out is tournaments and companion hunting. Then once I have around thirty thousand silver I resort to trading and finally raiding. After an hour or so of play you're ready to join a Germanic faction and slaughter the vile Britons. It's also a shame that wine alone seems to have any value, it takes away the immersion when you simply build winery after winery, especially in the era of Anglo-Saxon Heptarchy!
Does the special smithes worth to deal with? I need to accumulate some renown to see personally.

Anyway I don't suggest to buy masterwork swords. It gave only +2 damage, and broke after some battles. This little bonus doesn't worth 20000 shillingas for me.
Another tip: if you defend a city with new wooden walls use a spear with range of 180. You may jump on the cart wheels at the gate and kill many enemy from there. Buy two of them because probably you will break at least one.

Do the hunts available in England, too? If yes where can I find this option? In the menu?
sorry for a late reply... worked a lot the last 2 days. i turn off weapon breakage. problem solved. otherwise, it's not worth getting top tier weapons. the special merchant is only good for armor atm. perhaps someone will modify the weapon file (within reason for the widowmaker sword) and post it for all to download.
Maybe it is better without weapon breaking. I like it anyway. :smile:
Do you want such a file? :grin:
I'm modifying the items file for myself however I can make a version for you if you would like it. Thanks to tool programmers the item editor is very easy to handle and the changes are save game compatible.
farmer > guard (light infantry) > spearman (medium infantry) > millite or veteran warrior (both heavy infantry).

thats the upgrade tree for farmers. if you own a small village and a town/fort, you can keep going to the village and take out the farmers that guard it. they replenish over time. the heavy infantry that come from this upgrade cost 40 a week. thats more expensive than faction specific troops. but you get the farmers free :smile: . so  a mix is recommended. but in tough times, do what you have to do to protect your land.
Always save your game before executing a lord and check your relations with a choosen settlement after it.
Save your game before boarding your ship. Sometimes you will get unwanted results. You may be enclosed forever between bridges if you board in wrong direction without the possibility to disembarking etc.
Csatádi said:
Sometimes you will get unwanted results. You may be enclosed forever between bridges if you board in wrong direction without the possibility to disembarking etc.

If this happens, hold ctrl + space, then click on the map to teleport past the bridge. I believe that cheats must be enabled to use this.
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