Dev Blog 18/01/18

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Mount & Blade is RPG, strategy, epic battles... and it's also a unique world which acts as the perfect framework for your own adventures and heroic deeds. Calradia, the continent where Mount & Blade takes place, is a low-fantasy setting deeply rooted in history: its past and factions are inspired by real kingdoms and conflicts of old, but it also adds its own doses of imagination. It's a delicate balance: you have to combine creativity and imagination with thorough research and interpretation of historical sources. The result, however, is worth all the efforts: Calradia may be a fictional place, but it feels as alive and real as our world. It takes a lot of talent and hard work to create such a place, and today we want to introduce you to a member of our team who plays an essential role in its creation: our writer and designer Steve Negus.


Read more at: http://www.taleworlds.com/en/Games/Bannerlord/Blog/42
 

Lord Szentgyorgyi

Sergeant Knight
WBWF&SVC
low-fantasy setting

I would debate Mount&Blade franchise being low-fantasy. Fictional yes, but in no case low-fantasy, as that would require having supernatural elements, which I'm pretty confident have no presence whatsoever in M&B. And that is for the better, in my book anyway, that for me was the biggest selling point back when I was introduced to this game, pure medieval warfare with no spells attached. It filled a niche that was so overlooked back in the day, ultimately becoming the pioneer of a new genre.

Anyone's welcome to debate my argument. Though I remember reading about the alpha versions of the original M&B having some kind of supernatural elements, someone can probably correct me on that, it doesn't really count any more. Also you could attribute Harlaus' obsession with butter to some supernatural force, but that is just speculation  :lol:

Regarding critique of why you guys are writing about 'stuff we already know', people don't realize these developer blog entries aren't exclusively meant for the existing fan base. These posts get shared on other websites, and they're a good source of information for people unfamiliar with the franchise. They also give insight on inner workings of the development team, which I doubt most of us were familiar with before these blog posts. I think it's good PR work, I enjoy them a lot, please keep them coming.
 
Szentgyörgyi said:
low-fantasy setting

I would debate Mount&Blade franchise being low-fantasy. Fictional yes, but in no case low-fantasy, as that would require having supernatural elements, which I'm pretty confident have no presence whatsoever in M&B. And that is for the better, in my book anyway, that for me was the biggest selling point back when I was introduced to this game, pure medieval warfare with no spells attached. It filled a niche that was so overlooked back in the day, ultimately becoming the pioneer of a new genre.

Anyone's welcome to debate my argument. Though I remember reading about the alpha versions of the original M&B having some kind of supernatural elements, someone can probably correct me on that, it doesn't really count any more. Also you could attribute Harlaus' obsession with butter to some supernatural force, but that is just speculation  :lol:

Regarding critique of why you guys are writing about 'stuff we already know', people don't realize these developer blog entries aren't exclusively meant for the existing fan base. These posts get shared on other websites, and they're a good source of information for people unfamiliar with the franchise. They also give insight on inner workings of the development team, which I doubt most of us were familiar with before these blog posts. I think it's good PR work, I enjoy them a lot, please keep them coming.

Haven't you noticed that bots have the supernatural ability to charge in the right direction even when your enemies are over the horizon? - I by contrast often blundered off in the wrong direction even after consulting the mini-map. :grin:
 

Crowcorrector

Sergeant at Arms
Anyone else concerned about the future of these blogs after the empire one next week?  I don't see TW revealing any interesting info after that... plus I'm not sure they have many main development departments left to interview (god forbid they start interviewing each individual)
 

Footbeard

Sergeant
WBNWVC
Low fantasy doesn't specifically mean "containing supernatural elements" especially when used as a genre term. In this case specifically the "low fantasy" primarily refers to the fictional blend of cultures, characters and setting.
 

FBohler

Knight
WBNWWF&S
Very interesting blog, love to see TW assuring their game is a low-fantasy setting instead of an ultra-boring ultra-realistic history driven game.
 

Bjorn The Hound

Grandmaster Knight
WBVCNWWF&SM&B
Crowcorrector said:
Anyone else concerned about the future of these blogs after the empire one next week?  I don't see TW revealing any interesting info after that... plus I'm not sure they have many main development departments left to interview (god forbid they start interviewing each individual)

Maybe, they will reveal the suprise they were talking about in the blog just before christmas.
 

Sebidee

Recruit
Auldman said:
Oh dear. That doesn't sound like they are even remotely close. You should have already nailed down a main quest at this point in the production. Yeesh.

I would imagine in a game line Bannerlord the main quest is one of the last things you do. You need to get the world built, and all the mechanics and the models done first. It's not like Witcher or Skyrim where the story dictates the content, more like the other way around.
 

Cpt. Nemo

The Wurst
Section Moderator
M&BWB
Crowcorrector said:
Anyone else concerned about the future of these blogs after the empire one next week?  I don't see TW revealing any interesting info after that... plus I'm not sure they have many main development departments left to interview (god forbid they start interviewing each individual)

Where did Callum say next week's blog is about the Empire?
 

BayBear

Knight
Cpt. Nemo said:
Crowcorrector said:
Anyone else concerned about the future of these blogs after the empire one next week?  I don't see TW revealing any interesting info after that... plus I'm not sure they have many main development departments left to interview (god forbid they start interviewing each individual)

Where did Callum say next week's blog is about the Empire?
He didn’t. In the steam forums Callum said next weeks blog would be something singleplayer related.

https://steamcommunity.com/app/261550/discussions/0/1692659135902800255/
 

Cpt. Nemo

The Wurst
Section Moderator
M&BWB
Clutch, thanks.

https://steamcommunity.com/app/261550/discussions/0/1692659135902800255/?ctp=2#c1692659135903072270
 

Ask

Regular
More dynamic companions and the explanation on grudges and what not was neat, I liked this guy :grin:
 

Ristridin

Veteran
M&BWBWF&SVC
Auldman said:
Oh dear. That doesn't sound like they are even remotely close. You should have already nailed down a main quest at this point in the production. Yeesh.

That's because people here keep sending in ideas they want to be in the game at launch, everyone has to stop giving TW such great ideas :wink:

From now on, only impossible ideas and over the top 'demands'. For example, I want to be able to launch my front line soldiers with catapults over the castle wall at night, for a surprise attack, the spies i send forward should have placed piles of hay in convenient places. When said soldiers are launched, the enemy will have a 'subterfuge' check running, if that's high enough, they will set fire to the hay, if the incoming soldiers pass their 'resistance/coolness' check, they will not burn, but have flaming swords for +4 damage instead. Also, the gate will open faster in that case.
If attacking soldiers fail all checks, they will return to the siege camp, running and screaming while being chased by the enemy riding armored war donkeys. Said donkeys will have bonus trample damage against your own war donkeys. Also, your war donkeys won't be armored and will have a lower fear tolerance, so they will dismount their riders after just one hit/near miss.

Sorry, sometimes i can't stop myself from writing/posting nonsense :smile:
 

Salmonsy

Veteran
Szentgyörgyi said:
low-fantasy setting

I would debate Mount&Blade franchise being low-fantasy. Fictional yes, but in no case low-fantasy, as that would require having supernatural elements, which I'm pretty confident have no presence whatsoever in M&B. And that is for the better, in my book anyway, that for me was the biggest selling point back when I was introduced to this game, pure medieval warfare with no spells attached. It filled a niche that was so overlooked back in the day, ultimately becoming the pioneer of a new genre.

Anyone's welcome to debate my argument. Though I remember reading about the alpha versions of the original M&B having some kind of supernatural elements, someone can probably correct me on that, it doesn't really count any more. Also you could attribute Harlaus' obsession with butter to some supernatural force, but that is just speculation  :lol:

Regarding critique of why you guys are writing about 'stuff we already know', people don't realize these developer blog entries aren't exclusively meant for the existing fan base. These posts get shared on other websites, and they're a good source of information for people unfamiliar with the franchise. They also give insight on inner workings of the development team, which I doubt most of us were familiar with before these blog posts. I think it's good PR work, I enjoy them a lot, please keep them coming.
Swords cutting through chainmail seems pretty fantasy to me.
 

Crowcorrector

Sergeant at Arms
Cpt. Nemo said:
Clutch, thanks.

https://steamcommunity.com/app/261550/discussions/0/1692659135902800255/?ctp=2#c1692659135903072270

Ah nice find,  I just assumed they were following theur usual cycle.  I'm genuinely excited for next weeks blog now in a way that I haven't been for some time :grin:
 

Rabies

Knight at Arms
Bustah said:
White Lion said:
To be honest I like and dislike "tax inefficiency". What do you guys think?

I think if you want to even vaguely represent a historically accurate system of fief management there NEEDS to be delegation and layers. Like there are your peasants who pay taxes to a farmer, who pools it up with fellow farmers at a higher administrative level, and so on. The level just gets higher and higher to the top, with each level being unique in both the type of people who are involved and the possibilities for inefficiency/corruption. I think it would be very interesting to be more hands on in this, as historical lords were. If you find you are getting less taxes than you believe you should (rather than the game just saying "Tax inefficiency: -15%") then you could ask around the local populace and perhaps hire some investigators (this was kind of in VC, but less dynamic). If you find it's just the peasants being reluctant with their taxes, you have a variety of options - help them and make them love you, and they will be less reluctant to support you - hire someone to enforce tax collection like lords often ask you to do in native - take punitive action, perhaps to the point of sacking your own village, at the obvious benefit of massive income at the time but long term distrust and economic difficulties - and I'm sure many more. However if you find the issues are at a higher level, perhaps with a noble you have appointed to the office of treasurer or steward who is taking a bit too much for himself or being slack with his collections, the situation would become more difficult. If you remove him from office, you lose support of him and his family, making your situation in the nobility a bit more precarious. You could give him a stern talking to, using your persuasion and charisma skills, perhaps convincing him to straighten up or perhaps starting a fight. And if his situation amongst the nobility is much stronger than yours, perhaps he will flat-out refuse to leave office - are you willing to start a civil war that will tear your nation apart over some missing denars?

To conclude I think corruption should be treated differently at every level but should ultimately have a theme: corruption is an inevitability, but it is up to the player to decide the balance, based on his playstyle preference and the current situation in the game world. The overall idea is that corruption reduces efficiency and stagnates a nation, but to remove it will cost stability and therein perhaps more money and more progress than was lost by allowing a bit of corruption. If you want to eradicate corruption you should be ready to manage your vassals, the nobility, and the peasants with an iron fist whilst also maintaining your diplomatic and economic skills in order to sustain a level of peace and prosperity that will allow your continued dominance. However, if you let corruption in while you are having difficulties, it can allow you to freely build up your power and improve the strenuous relation with lords whilst increasing the future workload of removing the said corruption. And I think it should be allowed to spiral out of control. How cool would it be if you were just doing these tax collecting quests for a king, and as you do them you notice the lords becoming more and more disgruntled and are hearing about issues within the court as the king banishes and arrests corrupt officials, only to see the country ripped to shreds in a violent civil war of multiple different factions with different leaders who rebelled for different reasons, perhaps just being opportunistic of the times? And on the other hand, a nation that is lax with its corruption will slowly sink into depression, as peasants will virtually ignore their lords, nobles will sit idle and decadent, and the lords and king will have little money to support their armies and garrisons, and will likely fall prey to a stronger, balanced faction.

That's my thoughts.

Edit: I said delegation and layers at the top but only really talked about layers. I think the type of people you assign to the various jobs involved in tax management should be very important. If you are a ruler who does not care about his people and is in search of pure income at the expense of those below him, perhaps a bandit-type companion you picked up on the way is a better idea than the kind-hearted, high honour companion that has more economic skills... even though it would seem he is better at handling the money, the conflict of practices and doctrine between the layers of management should be highly detrimental.

If even a very simplified version of what you're advocating made it into the game, I'd be pretty happy. But I wouldn't be overly optimistic about it because I think they may well have talked about already if something that ambitious were in their plans already. A multi-layered patronage system may have been explicitly ruled out, even - unfortunately.

Something that I think would make a major difference to this aspect of the game, though, would be for the player's money, and in fact all hard currency in the game, to have a physical presence in the world. Warband has you with a kind of abstracted on-line bank account that you can access any time from anywhere. If you (and NPCs) had to actually store and defend your money in a stronghold or safehouse or camp(s), hide it in stashes or carry it about in your inventory for performing transactions, I think it would open up a lot of interesting dynamics. And you could physically track your money and where/who it's going to, including losses through corruption. It would also mean that every lord, king, trader, bandit or even townsfolk's money would be there, somewhere in the environment, for you and others to 'interact' with.

Taleworlds have talked a little about the new 'dynamic' economy, and I think this would fit into that quite well, if it's possible to implement.
 

Bustah

Regular
Rabies said:
Taleworlds have talked a little about the new 'dynamic' economy, and I think this would fit into that quite well, if it's possible to implement.

Yes! That's an awesome idea and I'd like to expand on it... Money, literal hard currency, should not be the player or anybody's main storage system of wealth. They've already implemented bartering, which should easily make this possible. Let's take taxes for example. Why the hell does my village of maybe 50 people have enough money to pay me like 12 denars a head per week? Where are they getting this money? Medieval peasants, in Warband's setting (let alone Bannerlord's setting), did not have money. Taxes were collected in the form of grain, livestock, and chattels (random stuff that the lord thought was of value, often depending on who was being taxed: cloth, tools, furniture/household items, clothing, etc.). Peasants would eat or store pretty much everything they made, and whatever they brought to town was traded for the things they did not have (not money). In fact, most peasants should find money quite useless, unless they plan a trip to a city with all of their value sitting in their purse, ready to be stolen. No, it was much safer and more sensible to have all of your wealth stored in animals that lived for years and years, grain that could be stored, or the things that you made in your free time lying around the house and shed.

In Mount and Blade, money should be a part of life as a city dweller, merchant, and perhaps a economically motivated lord. I always felt that money was just weird in Warband. It felt like magic mana points. It's an obvious abstraction that can be solved, especially with your suggestion. If you don't understand me, here is an example from VC: I have just raided a coastal city. I devastate it completely after obviously winning with my Danish Elite Vikingarnir  :cool:. So I murder and enslave the populace, realistic and fun. Then I loot the town of its produce, realistic (besides the lack of livestock) and fun. But once I'm done I get this popup "You got 12000 peningas." What the hell? Did I just stumble upon El Dorado? Why are there over 12000 individual coins in this small town, that could only possibly have about 100 people within its walls? This just shows me that the coins have no real meaning and no weight (literally and in a gameplay sense). Half the time you hear that little chink sound you do not care. But for some reason when you lost troops or an item from your inventory, you are upset... what is the actual difference? Everything in Warband is just an extension of money. Once you get to the late game you don't care about anything but your denars. I lost some knights? Well I'll just buy some peasants with my magic money and turn them into knights with my magic money. I lost a settlement to an enemy faction? I'll just buy some mercs and throw them at the walls until I win. I've pissed off my capital town? I'll just use my magic money to buy an assload of ale and make everyone happy. Imagine if everything, EVERYTHING you did had weight. You recruit from a village? Its population goes down. You piss off a town? Some traders refuse to do business and no one wants to join you. Your army is utterly destroyed in battle? You have to push your economy to the limit, piss off a bunch of people, and spend most of your hard earned livestock and grain to rebuild. Because atm it just feels like my Great Beacon of Unlimited Mana (dyeworks in Rivacheg) is just fueling all of my activities from across the world. Why did they get rid of the fact that you have to go to settlements to collect taxes? I have so many questions, suggestions and rants and I'm probably rambling I'll just stop.
 
Nice picture...falconry confirmed?  :mrgreen:

I wouldn't interpret what he said as "companion death confirmed", even though it's clear that is what they're aiming for. Perhaps there are some technical difficulties atm?

I don't like that much tbh, players will get attached to the good companions and tend to save scum if they die. And if they don't, in the end of a campaign we will be with a bunch of characters we don't even know the name. Hopefully there'll be a way to toggle off this "dynasty mode", or someone will be able to mod it somehow.

 

Octaviux

Recruit
M&BWBNWWF&SVC
In Bannerlord, there are about five types of morality that you can try to hue to - reciprocal loyalty to friends and kin, sticking to your word, courage and willingness to sacrifice for a cause, compassion toward those who suffer, and long-term utilitarian calculation - and they'll sometimes be in conflict.
I'll certainly be following how this implementation pans out but this could add quite a layer to the game that I'm not sure I've seen in another.  Bold move in a new direction and it's enticing.

There are a lot more potential companions in Bannerlord, and they have backstories, but we want the companion system to feel more open-ended. We want for it to be possible for companions to die (and give the player, say, a motivation to avenge them) or, alternately, for a player to appoint lots of companions to lordships.
I love this, I always felt the need to keep most of the companions in my party because it felt like I was losing a compatriot to make them a Lord.  Having many more of them will allow me to freely give many lordships and possibly not rely on standard NPC lords.  Allowing them to die, whether that is just when they're in your party or also when they're lords could strike quite a blow in a good way.  It raises the emotional stakes and can spur things like revenge or a true sense of loss for them like you don't risk in Warband.
 
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