Real-World DLC Idea: Mount&Blade II: Ottoman Conquest

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Mount&Blade 1 had 2 real-life DLCs, Napoleonic Wars and Viking Conquest.

I suggest that when the time comes, a DLC similar to Viking Conquest should be made for Bannerlords but with the Balkans of 1335s instead.

This was the period of the quick Ottoman conquest of the Balkans, thus the name: Ottoman Conquest, or Balkan Conquest but I think Ottoman Conquest sounds better. It gives the player the option to either be part of the defending kingdoms, the attacking empire or a bandit taking advantage of the situation.

We can again have 2 different religions: Christianity and Islam.

Aditionally, we can have 2 branches of religion: catholic or orthodox and sunni or shia.

And we have plenty of kingdoms as well as vassal states. We can also have storylines.

This is a map of the balkans in 1335:


1. Kingdom of Hungary (4 vassals)
1.1 Kingdom of Croatia
1.2 Kingdom of Bosnia
1.3 Principality of Transylvania
1.4 Principality of Moldavia (will soon revolt)
2. Kingdom of Serbia (1 vassal)
2.1. Principality of Albania (no Kosovo, not because of the conflict but because of historical accuracy)
3. Principality of Wallachia
4. Kingdom of Bulgaria
5. The Byzantine Empire
6. The Ottoman Emirate
7+. Various other Greek states (Epirus, Aragon)
8+. Various smaller Islamic states (Karasi, Germiyan, Saruhan, Aydin, Tekke)

Possible storylines:
- Create the Ottoman Empire. (all of Anatolia + Byzantine Empire + all Greek states)
- Restore the Byzantine Empire. (all of Anatolia + Ottoman Emirate + all Islamic states)
- Restore the Bulgarian Empire. (Thrace + Serbia + Wallachia + Moldavia + Transylvania)
- Create the Kingdom of Romania. (Wallachia + Moldavia + Transylvania)
- Create the Kingdom of Yugoslavia. (Serbia + Croatia + Bosnia)
- Restore the Serbian Empire (Serbia + Macedonia + Thessalay + Epirus)

- The Byzantine Empire starts rather weak for its size so that if the player doesn't do anything it will eventually fall.
- The Ottoman Emirate starts rather strong for its size so that if the player doesn't do anything it will eventually expand.
- Kingdom of Hungary starts rather pacifist so that it will rarely seek to expand unless it was attacked or has a good reason.

Intro Cutscene:
"The year is 1335, the Byzantine Empire, great was its power and glory, was reduced to the size of a minor kingdom by continous attacks from east and west alike. Yet, Constantinopole stands as one of the greatest cities of its era, will the Byzantine Empire stand the test of time? Or will it be fully annexed and forgotten? The Greek States, once proud members of the Byzantine Empire, have begun to rebel and seek their own destiny, losing faith in the Emperor of Constantinopole.

The South Slavs, formed four kingdoms of their own, two were incorporated into the Kingdom of Hungary, while Serbia and Bulgaria stand as bitter rivals, dispite their shared ancenstry. Will each of them seek their own destiny, to restore the empires that they once were? or will they bury they bury the hatchet and make common front against the Ottoman conquest?

The Romanians, long have lived subjugated by other people, yet in recent years a successful rebellion in Wallachia led to the foundation of the first Romanian kingdom, the relations between Moldavia and their Hungarian overlords are getting worse and rebellion is becoming a serious possibility, even in the event of a successful rebellion in Moldavia, the Romanian states are divided and surrounded by much greater powers, hard to say whether they will stand the test of time.

The people of Hungary came to Europe centuries ago as the Huns and Magyar tribes, yet they adapted to Europe and become a fully-fledged European kingdom, the Kingdom of Hungary has long since abbandoned its desire for territorial expansionism, because of their location they are protected from the Ottoman conuqest, for now. Will this peaceful policy work in their favor or will it only haste their doom? Will they take initative to stop the Ottoman conquest? Wait for other kingdoms to weaken the Ottomans while they conquer what is left? or simply be the last to fall in a great series of Ottoman conquests?

And last but not least, are the Ottomans, the great hordes who came from Asia and conquered much of the Byzantine Empire, they split into many tribes, but a certain Osman I received a vision that his sons and descendanrds will rule world empire for centuries after his death, that the name of Ottoman dynasty will be known in every corner of the world, such will be their power, was this a dream? or will it become a reality?"

Possible Events:
- Fast Ottoman Conquest as soon as the game starts in 1335. (the Ottomans should reach Bulgaria by 1352)
- Claymant war in Karasi in 1345.
- Moldavia succesfully revolts against the Kingdom of Hungary in 1346.
- Claymant war in the Byzantine Empire in 1347.
- Claymant war in Serbia in 1360.
- Crusade against the Ottomans in 1366.
- Claymant war in the Ottoman Empire 1402.
- Crusade against the Ottomans in 1439.
Of course, a year takes a lot in the world of Mount&Blade, these events are listed here so you can get the time difference between one event or the other, I wouldn't have a problem if all of them would gradually happen in 1335 - 1338 in the game rather than literally having to wait years, they could happen in the create the Ottoman Empire storyline, the way and whether these are implemented is up to the developers, and of course, some players would prefer a blank map rather than one with a predefined course of events.

History of the Balkans in 1335-1400s:
The Ottomans lacked effective siege equipment and couldn't move against their increasingly powerful Turkmen neighbours, the Aydin and Karasi dynasties, which had taken over Byzantine territory in southwestern Anatolia. However, the Ottoman capture of Bursa in 1324 provided the first means for developing the administrative, economic, and military power necessary to make the principality into a real state and to create an army.

The Ottomans began a military policy of employing Christian mercenary troops, thus lessening his dependence on the nomads. With Christian mercenaries, the Ottomans were soon was able to capture the remaining Byzantine towns in northwestern Anatolia: Iznik in 1331, Izmit in 1337 and Üsküdar in 1338. The Ottomans then moved against their major Turkmen neighbours to the south.

Taking advantage of internal conflicts, the Ottomans annexed Karasi in 1345 and gained control of the area between the Gulf of Edremit and Cyzicus, reaching the Sea of Marmara. They thus put themselves in a position to end the lucrative monopoly enjoyed by Aydin, that of providing mercenary troops to competing Byzantine factions in Thrace and at the Byzantine capital, Constantinople. The expansion also enabled the Ottomans to replace Aydin as the principal ally of the Byzantine emperor John VI Cantacuzenus.

The consequent entry of Ottoman troops into Europe gave them a direct opportunity to see the possibilities for conquest offered by Byzantine decadence. The collapse of Aydin following the death of its ruler, Umur Bey, left the Ottomans alone as the leaders of the muslims against the Byzantines. Orhan helped Cantacuzenus take the throne of the Byzantine Empire in 1347 and as a reward secured the right to ravage Thrace and to marry the emperor’s daughter Theodora.

The Ottomans then used Gallipoli as a base for permanent conquests in Europe. Constantinople itself was bypassed, despite the weakness and disorganization of its defenders, because its thick walls and well-placed defenses remained too strong for the nomadic Ottoman army, which continued to lack siege equipment.

The Ottomans' initial conquests extended northward into Thrace, culminating with the capture in 1361 of Adrianople, the second city of the Byzantine Empire. Renamed Edirne, the city became the new Ottoman capital, providing the Ottomans with a centre for the administrative and military control of Thrace. As the main fortress between Constantinople and the Danube River, it controlled the principal invasion road through the Balkan Mountains, assured Ottoman retention of their European conquests, and facilitated further expansion to the north.

The Ottomans then moved through the Maritsa River valley and captured Philippopolis in 1363. Control of the main sources of Constantinople’s grain and tax revenues enabled him to force the Byzantine emperor to accept Ottoman suzerainty. The death of the Serbian emperor Stefan Dusan in 1355 left his successors too divided and weak to defeat the Ottomans, despite an alliance with Louis I of Hungary and Tsar Shishman of Bulgaria in the first European Crusade against the Ottomans. The Byzantine emperor John V Palaeologus tried to mobilize European assistance by uniting the churches of Constantinople and Rome, but that effort only further divided Byzantium without assuring any concrete help from the West.

In January 1366, Pope Urban V declared a Crusade to save Europe from Islam and the Turks. Responding to this, Count Amadeo VI of Savoy (in the northwest of Italy) took a fleet of twenty ships (galleys) to the Dardanelles, overran Gelibolu temporarily, captured some ports on the Black Sea and there laid siege to Varna. The Catholic king of Hungary, Louis I, joined the crusade. Christian rulers from Bosnia and Serbia joined in a coalition with Louis and began a drive to push the Ottomans back to Asia.

The new Ottoman ruler, Murad, sent the coalition force fleeing back, and this encouraged Murad to expand farther into Christian territory, into the Balkans. The Balkans were lands that had been ruled by Constantinople. Christians in the Balkans were of the Eastern Orthodox faith. As in Constantinople, in the Balkans fear of domination by Catholics was prevalent. Local clergy and populations were unenthusiastic about help from the Catholics. And some local rulers accepted military help from the West in exchange for a promise to recognize the supremacy of Catholicism.

Among the Serbs in the Balkans various noblemen or princes had been competing with each other for power. There had been wars among the Serbs in the 1360s. In 1371 the Ottomans defeated a Serb and Hungarian force on the Maritsa River in Bulgaria, a little northwest of Edirne, a battle known to modern Turks as the "Rout of the Serbs." Christians continued fighting Christians. Some lords sought protection by allying themselves with the Turks, agreeing to vassalage. In 1372 the Bulgar tsar of Tirnova, John Sisman, also swore homage to the Ottoman sultan and sent to Murad his daughter as a bride. By 1373, Murad had conquered most of Macedonia.

In 1375 Serbia's despotic ruler began paying the Ottomans tribute in money and in young men drafted for service with the Ottomans. The exact nature of this service is not easily ascertained. Murad took the Macedonian city of Monastir (Bitola), the Serbian town of Naisus (Nis) and the Bulgarian town of Sofia. In 1387 in Asia Minor, Murad had defeated a coalition of princes, at the battle of Konia, and had extended Ottoman rule there. And in 1389 he and his army crushed another collection of Balkan nobles at Kosovo. This was 34 years after the Serbian empire of Tsar Dusan had disintegrated. It was 18 years after the battle on the River Maritsa. Following the 1389 Battle of Kosovo, a Serbian power survived in the area. Queen Milica, the widowed mother of the fourteen or fifteen year-old prince Stefan Lazarevic, protected herself from the aggressions of Sigismund of Hungary by bargaining with the Turks, gaining their protection in exchange for vassalage.

According to Serb folklore the Battle of Kosovo destroyed the great medieval Serbian empire and Serbs were immediately placed under Turkish rule. At Kosovo a Serb patriot is said to have assassinated Murad – but to no avail as Murad's son took power. The story of the Serb patriot would be an inspiration for Serb youths in 1914 in their plan to assassinate Archduke Ferdinand of Austro-Hungary. Tensions existed between local rulers and their subjects. The Ottoman Turks were known to give the Orthodox Christian clergy freedom to lead their flock. The Turks were known to declare land that had belonged to feudal lords as publicly owned, to free peasants from the dues they had had to pay to these lords, and to free peasants from forced labor (the corvée) for the lords. The Turks were giving peasants an autonomy that they thought would create a more easily paid tax that would create revenue for them (called the plow tax).

In the Balkans, fear of rule by Catholics and dislike of feudal oppression was making it easier for the Ottoman Turks to conquer there. Rather than imposing an utterly alien system upon peoples of the Balkans, the Ottomans maintained many of the features of local culture – much as conquerors had done for more than two thousand years. There was not at this time in the Balkans the national identity that would develop centuries later. Meanwhile, ethnic Albanians with Serb orthodox names were in Kosovo. But most of the towns and villages had Serb, not Albanian, names, suggesting that Albanians in Kosovo were a minority.

After the 1371 Battle of Maritsa, which the Serbians lost, the Balkans start acquiescing to Ottoman domination. Romanians thus end up forming the first line in the confrontation with the Turks, with the first major battle being led by Wallachian prince Mircea the Old at Rovine, in 1395. The Serbs had already become faithful allies for the Turks, Serb boyars Marko Krajević and Konstantin Dragaš fell in the battle of Rovine in 1395, fighting on the Ottoman side against Mircea the Old's Wallachia. This death in battle of the two Serb leaders shows the essential guiding line of Ottoman conquest. Without help from their vassals, especially Serbian boyars, the Ottoman offensive would not have been possible.

In all the essential events of the Ottoman conquest in the Balkans, Serbian boyars were on the Ottoman side: at Rovine, at Nicopole, where Stefan Lazarevici's cavalry tipped the scales for the Ottomans, at Ankara, where the same riders fought to the bitter end at the side of Bayezid I, after most Muslims had fled, or in 1430, when Grigore Brankovici helped conquer Salonika, then under Venetian rule. Even in 1453, Serbians showed up at the battle for Constantinople, not as defenders, but as troops on the side of the Ottomans.

Wallachia, the principality north of the Danube, was in a similar situation. Signs were emerging of cooperation with the Ottomans, even of Ottoman suzerainty. There was regional splintering, boyars were looking long term at working with the Ottomans or with Hungary, even though, at least in an early stage, most princes joined one camp or the other depending on the political and military situation at a given time. Which is why it is not easy to fathom who used ambitious local boyars, the Ottomans or the Hungarians at any given time. These local rulers believed they were bolstering their regional power through cunning maneuvers, or by often switching sides. The rapid succession of princes in Bosnia and Wallachia is mostly explained by these power plays.

After Timur's victory over the Ottoman Sultan Bayezid in 1402, and Bayezid's death, Bayezid's sons fought among themselves for supremacy. Brother again killed brother, and in 1413 one of the brothers, Mehmed (Mehmed a variation on the name Muhammad), emerged supreme. In 1421 his eighteen-year-old son, Murad II, succeeded him, and, with the Ottomans united again, Murad was able to re-establish Ottoman rule in the territories that had been conquered by his great-grandfather, Murad I. Fighting for Murad were his slave soldiers the Janissaries. These were men who had been selected when they were young boys, brought up as Muslims and given military training.

The Janissaries were devoted to asceticism, celibacy, to behavior that matched Islamic values. They were proud warriors, an effective fighting force with esprit de corps and eager for the glory that goes with military victory. Meanwhile, most Christians had remained in Asia Minor with the coming of the Turks, and under the Ottomans they lived as free people. Some of them served Ottoman society as professionals of various kinds. Some served in the sultan's government. And in the conquered territories some had converted to Islam in order to serve in Murad's military.

Murad II expanded in the Balkans. He invaded Serbia in 1439. He forced rulers in Bosnia and Herzegovina to pay tribute. Across Christendom people were again alarmed, and another Crusade was called. King Ladislaus I of Hungary put troops in the field against the Turks. Murad fought in Transylvania and was defeated there, giving Christendom new encouragement. Crusaders from all major European countries went to the aide of King Ladislas I of Hungary, and they drove Murad's forces from Naisus and Sophia. Scenting what they believed was victory, more crusaders flooded into Hungary. A Crusader army of around 50,000 crossed the Danube River and was heading southward intent on driving Islam back to Asia Minor. Murad intercepted them at Kosovo in October 1448 and defeated them, securing Ottoman rule south of the Danube River, and the Ottomans regained Walachia as a vassal state.

I know it's early, but this is a suggestion about a future DLC. What do you think?
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All is good and all but I don't see this as a DLC but a mod for sure. Speak with some mod-people.
The way I see it, the person with the vision would need to learn to mod and perhaps create a few basic assets for establishing the mod as an entity. Next, they would recruit a team of like-minded modders willing to put time into the project.

What follows would depend on how organized you are and your goals.

If you are a well-prepared team and think it has what it takes, you might be able to get the license to make a full-blown DLC like Viking Conquest. There will be money on the table, but then it becomes a job with timelines. In addition, there would be legal concerns and the need for the team to ensure none of the content violates copyright laws.

Otherwise, and more often than not, the team will work on a module which (if it can avoid corporate flak) can be made at any pace and with a lot more flexibility.

The exact level of quality between these two project types varies - we all know Prophesy of Pendor (free) was a wonderful experience in many regards.

I myself was planning on following this path and one day working with a team on a new module based on a comic series from the 90s. Maybe it pans out, maybe it doesn't. It's just a dream right now.
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Rather obscure, it was called Krey.

It's corny.
It's dorky.
It's not that great.

But I liked it, and I think there's a lot of potential if fully developed. Might even ask if the comic book author can help - he lives not from my city.
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Might be interesting for people from that part of the world, but there's much more interesting periods in history that would be nice for an actual DLC. Mods would fit this idea better.
Might be interesting for people from that part of the world, but there's much more interesting periods in history that would be nice for an actual DLC. Mods would fit this idea better.
i like the ottoman period and i keep watching a turkish tv show to the next about it
i want in a game
but not in this game.....
Might be interesting for people from that part of the world, but there's much more interesting periods in history that would be nice for an actual DLC. Mods would fit this idea better.
Other interesting periods are already in +100 games, there are dozens of games about the crusades, the 100 years war, you name it, I already played them multiple times in different games. I would like to see a game about a historical period that doesn't get much spotlight such as the Rise of the Ottomans as I suggested in this DLC, the Mongol invasions, the Russo-Turkish wars, etc.
There was no albanians in Kosovo at that time.Turkish census one century later in Kosovo shows :
  • 13,000 Serb dwellings present in all 480 villages and towns
  • 75 Vlach dwellings in 34 villages
  • 46 Albanian dwellings in 23 villages
  • 17 Bulgarian dwellings in 10 villages
  • 5 Greek dwellings in Lauša, Vučitrn
  • 1 Jewish dwelling in Vučitrn
  • 1 Croat dwelling
albanians was not majority even in whats now modern albania.They started expanding with turkish rule because they took islam and started first converting christians and then albanization was next step.
I agree with you, this is why I said that Kosovo shouldn't be part of the Principality of Albania. This has nothing to do with taking sides in the current political conflict, it is merely a historical accuracy. Whether you are an Albania or Serbia supporter in the conflict, to deny that the province of Kosovo was mostly Serbian in 1335 is to deny empirical evidence. To accept that doesn't mean that you automatically side with Serbia, it simply means that you accept a historically accurate fact. In fact, the other method, to deny reality because it doesn't fit want to you want believe is the problem.

I don't know about the situation in what is now modern Albania. The developers should look it up and stay true to historical accuracy. Some people will naturally be offended, you cannot control what people get offened by, but people should only be offened when they have good reason to be offended. Being offended that Kosovo was overwhelmingly Serbian in 1335 is not being offended for good reason, it is not a matter of opinion or debate here, people can be offended by everything, in this case they will be offended by factual reality. It is not the developers' job to support some people's struggle against reality by reducing historical accuracy to please their factually incorrect demands. If we are to reach a compromise with any conspiracy theory or factually wrong information there is, we wouldn't ever make a historically accurate history game, for an individual can disagree with virtually everything for no good reason. A developer's duty should first be towards historical accuracy and facts.

As Hitchens's Razor says: What can be asserted without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence.
I love the enthusiasm and the effort you've gone too. Not many have that level of vision to see something put in place and flesh out how it would work. I hope something comes of it, even if a mod :smile:
Honestly I don't care about DLC that does not expand the main game, personally when they get to the point where they are planning DLC I hope they add the Nords and Ships. The history is cool and this is an interesting time period but I hope they stick to the goods on this one.
No.... i dont want insults based on national heritages, we dont need Balkan toxicity here :smile:
Trust me when i tell you if you make something like this expect a lot of toxic people arguing about who owns what etc etc.
No.... i dont want insults based on national heritages, we dont need Balkan toxicity here :smile:
Trust me when i tell you if you make something like this expect a lot of toxic people arguing about who owns what etc etc.
By a lot of people you mean the ultranationalist ones? Trust me, I've been to the Balkans, they are a minority. Most people there don't care about long forgotten issues.

Unless your goal is to please all those ultranationalists, which shouldn't be, and which likely is impossible to do, the goal should be to make a historically accurate representation of the balkans at the time. The map is pretty clear on who owns what, history too.

Take Kosovo for example. I'm not Serbian by the way. Naturally, there will be some Albanian ultranationalists mad because "there aren't Albanians in Kosovo!!!", but there aren't Albanians in Kosovo because there weren't Albanians in Kosovo in 1335, it is not a matter of debate or ambiugous history, it is a matter of education and those ultranationalists not knowing their own history. Most Albanian people are reasonable and understand this difference.
It's well within the grasp of a mod. The default scenes could be repurposed to Byzantine and Ottoman factions. I don't think there would be a dlc on a whole new map with entirely new factions. The most radical might be an earlier setting with the Calradian Empire in being.
I think that this would be amazing, if done well. It would have to be Viking Conquest level of love and detail though, that is the bar that has been set.
I don't get why some of you bash the idea.
OP have put so much work into it and has his own vision which is great.

I would say, it's not as good for DLC but it's a great idea for a mod and I hope OP will find people who will realize his ideas.
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