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My consistent gripe - Lord behavior

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bearmans

Recruit
I bought into EA at release and I have played about 15 campaigns of decent length at this point, and I decided I finally wanted to bring this up. While many things have improved in my eyes since release, and I really enjoy the moment to moment gameplay, this is the aspect of the game that consistently puts me off from actually trying to "complete/win" a given playthrough rather than just start over.

There are a lot of things that just don't work well with the kingdom policy/diplomacy/relation systems right now, but the thing I find most consistently off-putting is that lords do not- and never seem to- behave like a real "lord" might. Every lord's interests are purely arithmetic and cold-calculated. Lords don't develop interesting relations, or really any relations at all, with you or others. What "relation" there is doesn't really even seem to do much of anything- you can have 100 relation with every lord in your kingdom, and it doesn't seem to make them more likely to help or support you or your proposed decisions. You can have 100 relation with every enemy lord and odds are good that still none of them will consider joining your kingdom or letting you walk away from battle without enormous concessions.

To me, this would all be fine if this was how "calculating" lords behaved, but this is all of them. There's no "romance" or "intrigue" in the game's statecraft, not whatsoever. It's all just "can you make this worthwhile for me and my clan, exactly as worthwhile as it needs to be, and not a denar less".

I think the game would benefit enormously from lords that behaved a little more as if they had any passion or ambition. This doesn't even need to be as complex as it sounds- it could be as simple as changing the way that lords reward and punish relations based on their characteristics (loyal/daring/deceitful/etc) and changing how much impact that relation has. For example, "loyal" lords would gain relation with you very slowly and lose a lot of relation with you for attacking or opposing their close friends. Deceitful lords would have their relations swing quickly in either direction over even minor things, and quickly betray those they dislike. These are just off the cuff examples, but you get the idea.

In general I also think that it needs to be possible to have more "meaningful" relations with lords, where friends could be willing to come to your aid unbidden/loan you money/support your policies or something like those based on high relation. And it definitely needs to be harder to gain relation and easier to lose more of it, particularly where fief awards or policy decisions are concerned.

Anyway, that's all I wanted to put out there for now, because I'm not sure that this is getting as much attention as (imo) it deserves. The late game just isn't that interesting if lords and ladies aren't. Until then, the best and indeed perhaps the only way to end the game is going to be chopping heads until nobody is left to oppose you.
 

murtega

Knight
They are not even smart enough to retreat into their own castles when outmatched. Unique behaviors based on trait and relationship? Too complicated.
 

Spinozart1

Knight
They are not even smart enough to retreat into their own castles when outmatched. Unique behaviors based on trait and relationship? Too complicated.
This is something that has been looked at -> LINK
Hopefully we will see the improvement in next patch (1.6.1?)

Sorry again for tagging you @mexxico
Considering the existing constraints, is it planned to include the traits and relation values in campaign calculations?
I think I could read somewhere that enemy lords will be less likely to raid you villages if you have good relations with them.
 
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