Breakdown of WFaS difficulty options (1.143)

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Sergeant at Arms
1. Introduction

Greetings, everyone! If you have ever wondered about difficulty levels of WFaS and their respective features, you might want to learn what each of them actually yields in terms of variables or unique entities. This topic is to answer everything pertaining to the entire subject. Here is a breakdown of each difficulty level with every possible affected setting included. If you want to learn about this thread's context, please head to 3. Review of the game, the context and perspectives of playing a campaign in WFaS.

2. The breakdown

Affected setting (vertically)/ Difficulty level (horizontally)​
Set of items upon starting a new game​
1000 gold, a Sumpter Horse, a Saber (there are seven variations of the Saber and it is the worst one), a Matchlock Carbine (the worse variation by a negligible margin)​
500 gold, a Sumpter Horse, a Pistol (the worse variation), a Simple Saber (there are seven variations of the Simple Saber as well and it is the worst one)​
100 gold, a Sumpter Horse, a Handmade Firearm (the worse variation), a Carpenter Axe​
Base size of a player-led party​
Additional troop slots per one Leadership skill point​
Additional troop slots acquired with respect to a player's renown (division factor)*
Random chance of poisoning a city's water​
Time needed to plant explosives when besieging a city​
75% of a normal period of time (on Moderate and Hard difficulty levels)​
Value of a trade penalty​
75% of a normal penalty (on Hard difficulty level)​
85% of a normal penalty (on Hard difficulty level)​
Cost of recruting a troop and making them join a player-led party​
Value added to upper limit of a created player-led party (the actual limit is chosen randomly upon a player-led party being created)**
Value of a price after recalculation​
50% of a normal price (on Hard difficulty level)​
75% of a normal price (on Hard difficulty level)​
* Renown gets divided by a factor corresponding to the difficulty level; the result is equal to the number of additional troop slots. For instance, on Moderate difficulty level, a player has 200 renown points, which are divided by 20. As an outcome, 10 additional troop slots are assigned to a player-led party.
** Upper limit is calculated by multiplying a player's level by 3. Then, the result gets added to the value assigned to a difficulty level. Shortly thereafter, the total value is subtracted from the base of 100. The final outcome is equal to the upper limit of a created player-led party. For example, on Moderate difficulty level, a player's level is 20, which is multiplied by 3 and then it gets added to 15. Next, the total value of 75 is subtracted from 100 and the equation yields 25 that constitutes the upper limit.

3. Review of the game, the context and perspectives of playing a campaign in WFaS

Summarizing, it is not adviseable by me to choose a difficulty setting other than Easy if one is willing to play the unmodified game. Development of WFaS was done with minimal effort to release the game. Moreover, it seems to have been rushed or done effortlessly only to capitalize on Polish nationalists'/ patriots' pride; there were many other games with the same target audience, so to speak. All in all, the developers of WFaS released a buggy/ bare-bones game with many shortcomings and the lack of features that would make Warband much better (the former was released in Poland in 2009 and re-released world-wide in 2011, whereas the latter was released in 2010). The developers aimed to conceal their lack of effort with a stance "do it all yourself (and waste much time on what could be attained faster if we released a better product)". As a result, players are in possession of a limited variety of features and options, which all takes its toll on length of the gameplay, protracted process of achieving milestones and overall quality of entertainment. In other words, the developers artificially increased duration of the playthrough by limiting their own output and leaving the product as it was. The entire game (the developers actually acquired the rights to release WFaS as a standalone title) is much worse than a great deal of non-commercial modifications for Mount&Blade franchise in terms of quality of assets or scripts. An unfortunate player is left to their own devices with few options at their disposal. That being said, in order not to waste time on performing repetitive actions, it is best either to choose Easy difficulty setting or to modify the game. Shortening the gameplay may be effectively attained by performing the latter; the choice of what to do is up to a player. Personally, I recommend changing the multiplier for troop slots per one Leadership skill point, enabling the possibility of recruiting villagers to a player's party after reaching the scripted threshold and allowing to upgrade troops to their better types (by adding additional troop tree branches if necessary).
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