RIP MP

RDP

Veteran
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I wish I could get a refund. Not only does this game tax my system irregularly for the power of my PC, all of the game designs were a complete and utter letdown. I don't know why I expected better, maybe because I have been around for so long and loved both mount&blade and mount&blade warband so much; having spent tens of thousands of hours in-game. I assumed that they would have honed their successful formula into something even greater and truly special; worthy of being a successor to the games that made the franchise great.

Instead what we got was a complete disgrace to the name mount&blade, inferior even to other gaming companies who saw mount&blade and created their own games out of that inspiration. Inferior to a game that spawned from a team that modded Warband, who routinely listened to their community, and brought their ideas and community to a new original title where they had more freedom to create.

The problems won't be fixed with a few number tweaks, optimization, or even an overhaul. It's a failure of understanding at a fundamental level between the game's designers and it's community. This was easily the most disappointing $60 game I've ever spent and I only wish now that I could get a refund.

You may have made the game Taleworlds, but beauty is in the eye of the beholder. An artist can't force their personal thought of a piece; be the widely loved interpretation.
This. It's like thier whole team has not played mount and blade.
 

azakhi

Server Developer
Developer
M&BWBWF&S
Best answers
1
This. It's like thier whole team has not played mount and blade.
Soon someone will say we are intentionally trying to kill it :smile:
I have 3k+ hours on SP, 50~ MP Warband. 150+ MP, 0 SP Bannerlord. Not that it matters.
 

DainMorgot

Regular
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0
Soon someone will say we are intentionally trying to kill it :smile:
I have 3k+ hours on SP, 50~ MP Warband. 150+ MP, 0 SP Bannerlord. Not that it matters.

Nobody tries to intentionally kill their own game. Bad decision making does. See games like Anthem for example (I say Anthem because it's triple A, so money did not matter but decisions did). I have 500 hours on Bannerlord MP, did not really touch SP except from like 10 hours max. Stubborn development logic and decisions that find the majority of players opposite, very poor balancing are what kills your game. Specifically:

1) Combat
2) Classes
3) Bad matchmaking

On top of that, you decided to launch with: Captain mode, Siege, Skirmish, TDM. 4 modes that split the fanbase and none of them are properly balanced. I remember petmonster, a TW dev, saying that ''people who played the beta LOVE the game'' his exact words. That was a lie and the current population shows.

So no, you do not try to kill your game and nobody will accuse of doing so, but you enforce visions nobody likes with the 'hope' that the population will go up. Which won't happen.
 

azakhi

Server Developer
Developer
M&BWBWF&S
Best answers
1
Nobody tries to intentionally kill their own game. Bad decision making does. See games like Anthem for example (I say Anthem because it's triple A, so money did not matter but decisions did). I have 500 hours on Bannerlord MP, did not really touch SP except from like 10 hours max. Stubborn development logic and decisions that find the majority of players opposite, very poor balancing are what kills your game. Specifically:

1) Combat
2) Classes
3) Bad matchmaking

On top of that, you decided to launch with: Captain mode, Siege, Skirmish, TDM. 4 modes that split the fanbase and none of them are properly balanced. I remember petmonster, a TW dev, saying that ''people who played the beta LOVE the game'' his exact words. That was a lie and the current population shows.

So no, you do not try to kill your game and nobody will accuse of doing so, but you enforce visions nobody likes with the 'hope' that the population will go up. Which won't happen.
I understand but bringing hours played to discussion is not a good idea. Although some like the opposite narrative, devs generally have high amount of hours played and they care about the game. Discussing that wouldn't do any good imho. I personally like detailed conversations for example around snowballing and learn from them.
 

DainMorgot

Regular
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0
I understand but bringing hours played to discussion is not a good idea. Although some like the opposite narrative, devs generally have high amount of hours played and they care about the game. Discussing that wouldn't do any good imho. I personally like detailed conversations for example around snowballing and learn from them.

You misunderstood, I mentioned my hours to showcase that everything I claimed in my post comes from the perspective of someone who dislikes the state of bannerlord but STILL I stick to the game and do not post these issues just to rage. I do not flex the hours, but time spent in the game gives perspective to the feedback you give. I dont doubt that the devs care about the game but they also care too much about their bad visions, like classes, which nobody likes as a concept or implementation.
 

Dextrus

Regular
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0
I understand but bringing hours played to discussion is not a good idea. Although some like the opposite narrative, devs generally have high amount of hours played and they care about the game. Discussing that wouldn't do any good imho. I personally like detailed conversations for example around snowballing and learn from them.

Snowballing right now is the worst for aserai and sturgia imo. Aserai because they can instantly spawn 3 times with a 6 javs, a big shield, and a fast sword. All the other factions have to play their more expensive heavy inf classes extremely gold proficient in order to not lose the first round flat out and prevent aserai from snowballing into something like 1 mameluke, 2 skirmisher spawns. Plus the skirmisher javelins are too many and they are too strong by being almost capable of 2 hitting even armoured horses.
On top of that aserai has camels. They are kind of a meme but the bump damage is too strong, their acceleration combined with the ability tobump down infantry after two steps is overpowered and their equipped in the hand of capable player is good too considering their price.

Sturgia is harder to snowball, because you usually have to take more expensive classes in order to win, but if you win a round and have 390 gold you can go something like varyag, brigand, brigand which brings a lot of armour, throwing weapons and overpowered axes onto the field.

Battania can do similar things but their units are not as strong imo.

Coming back to the topic of this post. I personally find it sad that after so many years we get so little, even after the beta where everyone critiqued valid points. Not addressing those point now comes back and kills of the playerbase slowly but surely. We have been waiting for some sort of patch for 3 almost 3 weeks now. We all know it takes time but it hurts us all in our hearts to see this game go down the path it goes right now.
 

Al_Mansur

Grandmaster Knight
WB
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0
Soon someone will say we are intentionally trying to kill it :smile:
That's precisely what I've started to wonder. I can't believe that a dev team can make such absurd, insane, devastating decisions not on purpose.
Now the question is, why would they do that? Console? This would only explain a few of the terrible decisions. Maybe some kind of agreement with other companies which were afraid Bannerlord MP would have too much success and overshadow other MP games? Like "focus on SP and make it as good as you wish but let us the MP domain". I know it sounds totally delusional... but how they ruined the MP is delusional too.
 

RDP

Veteran
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That's precisely what I've started to wonder. I can't believe that a dev team can make such absurd, insane, devastating decisions not on purpose.
Now the question is, why would they do that? Console? This would only explain a few of the terrible decisions. Maybe some kind of agreement with other companies which were afraid Bannerlord MP would have too much success and overshadow other MP games? Like "focus on SP and make it as good as you wish but let us the MP domain". I know it sounds totally delusional... but how they ruined the MP is delusional too.
Dedicated servers will be the only hope for mp, even if they fix everything, the game is revolving around an esport style that will never take off and there wont be enough people queing for matchmaking. Clans, communities and mods kept warband alive.. not TW
 

Alyss

Master Knight
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0
I just think that having a specific vision for MP as a game developer and refusing to change it won’t bring you anywhere (unless this vision is perfect). In fact, for multiplayer you need the people approval if you want them to play, you can’t just do as you please because you think it is the right thing. Players won’t play it if they don’t like it, and from the way the game is dying, they don’t like it. At first I believed it when players were saying that only the warband comp players didn’t like it but now the warband MP scene is bigger than the Bannerlord MP scene. US_GK_TDM has more pop than the two tdm servers, and if Gk tdm is populated it means that the casual also got bored of Bannerlord.
 

Mardochaios

Recruit
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0
I just think that having a specific vision for MP as a game developer and refusing to change it won’t bring you anywhere (unless this vision is perfect). In fact, for multiplayer you need the people approval if you want them to play, you can’t just do as you please because you think it is the right thing. Players won’t play it if they don’t like it, and from the way the game is dying, they don’t like it. At first I believed it when players were saying that only the warband comp players didn’t like it but now the warband MP scene is bigger than the Bannerlord MP scene. US_GK_TDM has more pop than the two tdm servers, and if Gk tdm is populated it means that the casual also got bored of Bannerlord.
Unfortunately I'm not sure that's how game development works. It's not a public service. It's a private endeavour. Obviously they need to bend the knee to shareholders, but at the end of the day, it's still their project.

The trouble with competitive games like these is that I think some of the old guard will ultimately remain to play older iterations of the game(this is a common occurence in the fighting game community, with players preferring different iterations over others for one reason or another). Some people are less enthused about change and that's natural, especially if you have spent a decade or so practicing and mastering a game.
 

Gibby Jr

Marquis
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0
Unfortunately I'm not sure that's how game development works. It's not a public service. It's a private endeavour. Obviously they need to bend the knee to shareholders, but at the end of the day, it's still their project.

The trouble with competitive games like these is that I think some of the old guard will ultimately remain to play older iterations of the game(this is a common occurence in the fighting game community, with players preferring different iterations over others for one reason or another). Some people are less enthused about change and that's natural, especially if you have spent a decade or so practicing and mastering a game.
One of the things I was originally most excited about was change in Bannerlord. I love Warband and have spent over 6000 hours playing it, but it has plenty of flaws in its combat, its gameplay, its gear system and in its gamemodes. I was looking forward to changes that would fix those problems whilst keeping the good elements that everyone (casual and competitive) loved. Unfortunately, it just seems like TW didn’t understand what the things everyone loved were and didn’t understand what the most pressing problems Warband MP had were. Instead, they did everything in the name of “accessibility” to try and get a larger playerbase and attract not only completely new players, but also the SP-only crowd that didn’t play MP in Warband. That effort has demonstrably failed. Sacrificing gameplay and community-loved features for accessibility is a terrible idea and the consequences of doing so have already been made obvious. I don’t think there is any chance TW will change the many fundamental design decisions which have led to this situation, even though doing so would very likely see a revitalised playerbase and renewed enthusiasm for the game, so I and many others have nothing left to say other than doomer criticism. I was not against the concept of change, I actually wanted quite a few significant changes, even to the combat. I wanted gameplay improvements, TW wanted more accessible gameplay. The two rarely match.
 

OurGloriousLeader

Grandmaster Knight
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0
Unfortunately I'm not sure that's how game development works. It's not a public service. It's a private endeavour. Obviously they need to bend the knee to shareholders, but at the end of the day, it's still their project.
I think the working assumption is that TW want their game played and enjoyed, that's how they are beholden to us, not in terms of actual authority. More like a tacit consent of the governed type thing.
 

Maroon

Grandmaster Knight
WBWF&SNW
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I personally like detailed conversations for example around snowballing and learn from them.
Since you specifically mention it, what do you think of my take on snowballing from earlier in this thread? Is this something that you agree with, and if so, do the people who make the design choices (sorry if that's you, don't know for sure) agree as well? If so, what do you think could be done to help against this issue?

The beta stuff I'm talking about I don't have links to because of how long ago it was, but I distinctly remember Callum saying Warband's MP had very limited appeal and that their changes were intended to change that. I remember one other dev saying something similar, but I don't remember who or on what thread it was.
I remember this discussion, and I think Callum and the other devs were talking about how Warband multiplayer didn't draw singleplayer players into the multiplayer, and frankly, they're right. Maybe 5-10% of Warband's players even tried multiplayer, and far fewer stuck around.
Now, I don't think this is something that can be fixed. There is inherently a very large group in gaming that is not interested in skillbased PvP multiplayer gameplay, and one of the main draws of M&B singleplayer is the power fantasy element of growing to become extremely powerful and a god on the battlefield. This doesn't happen in multiplayer, and it can't.
But TW still wanted to attract more singleplayer players, so they dumbed down the multiplayer to the point where neither part of the playerbase is interested. The old MP players don't care because it's not as good as it used to be, and the SP players still just don't care about MP.
 
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Davic

Sergeant Knight at Arms
WBNW
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I remember this discussion, and I think Callum and the other devs were talking about how Warband multiplayer didn't draw singleplayer players into the multiplayer, and frankly, they're right. Maybe 5-10% of Warband's players even tried multiplayer, and far fewer stuck around.
Now, I don't think this is something that can be fixed. There is inherently a very large group in gaming that is not interested in skillbased PvP multiplayer gameplay, and one of the main draws of M&B singleplayer is the power fantasy element of growing to become extremely powerful and a god on the battlefield. This doesn't happen in multiplayer, and it can't.
But TW still wanted to attract more singleplayer players, so they dumbed down the multiplayer to the point where neither part of the playerbase is interested. The old MP players don't care because it's not as good as it used to be, and the SP players still just don't care about MP.
I feel like TW was misguided in thinking accessibility was the best way to get the SP crowd into MP. I think if they wanted to attract that playerbase, they should have looked at what the SP players found fun and tried to incorporate that into MP, without degrading the experience for people who enjoyed MP for what it is. I think something resembling the Mount and Blade subreddit's Calradic Campaign or For Honor's faction war would have been a good start or some kind of coop battle/survival mode. Eventually, I think a lot of people playing for these features (or ones like them) would have bled over into the more traditional MP game.
 

Ikea Knight

Knight
M&BWBWF&SNWVC
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0
I think one of the biggest missteps is that both modes are seperated in the pre-game menu.
That was handled better in Warband.
Right now it feels like two seperated games rather than a game with a multiplayer mode.

An another thing:
Why can I see my friends when I am in the multiplayer lobby but they can't see me when they are in singleplayer.
What's the point of that?
 

eritchie

Recruit
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I feel like for the multiplayer to be attractive to SP players has to:

Involve specific characters that you level (so you might have an archer, a two handed berserker etc), they have a name, gear and skill load out that you have built up over time. they mean something to you and your enemies/friends

A specific faction your character is in, something you are fighting for with your allies against your enemies (personal relations). This was great in ESO

And a continuous world that you are fighting over, where ownership of a castle, town actually means something.

Without that its just mindless killing, fun for a while but I cant invest anything in it and don't develop any relations with anyone i fight with, the server even kicks you and then you come back on the other team during siege.
 

Gibby Jr

Marquis
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I remember this discussion, and I think Callum and the other devs were talking about how Warband multiplayer didn't draw singleplayer players into the multiplayer, and frankly, they're right. Maybe 5-10% of Warband's players even tried multiplayer, and far fewer stuck around.
Now, I don't think this is something that can be fixed. There is inherently a very large group in gaming that is not interested in skillbased PvP multiplayer gameplay, and one of the main draws of M&B singleplayer is the power fantasy element of growing to become extremely powerful and a god on the battlefield. This doesn't happen in multiplayer, and it can't.
But TW still wanted to attract more singleplayer players, so they dumbed down the multiplayer to the point where neither part of the playerbase is interested. The old MP players don't care because it's not as good as it used to be, and the SP players still just don't care about MP.
Exactly. It doesn't matter how "accessible" you make the game, that group of people are not going to play MP. They aren't interested in it. Instead, TW should have been looking at attracting the playerbases from other skill-based melee pvp games, like Mordhau, where there is a clear market and a clear group of people that are interested in exactly the kind of gameplay that Bannerlord's MP could have offered. Mordhau was MP-only and peaked at 60k concurrent players, so the idea that Bannerlord's MP was inevitably going to be as small as or smaller than Warband's is nonsense.

It stems from viewing Warband's MP as a failed project and from concluding that the solution is to focus on accessibility. Neither of these things are true or good ideas. As you say, you can't attract that SP-crowd who enjoy the power fantasy and RP elements to skill-based MP. You can create casual modes that they are more likely to try and enjoy, like siege and captain modes, and you can create ranked MM so that they don't have to instantly go against insurmountable odds if they do want to try playing competitively, but the quality of the gameplay should not be sacrificed at the altar of accessibility. That is the real problem and TW have incorporated accessibility in the way they have designed every aspect of Bannerlord's MP. It is not even the case that only "elite competitive players" from Warband are dissatisfied with Bannerlord's MP, because casual players, even if they were not masters of Warband's combat, enjoyed how intuitive, fluid, reactive and responsive it was. All it would have taken is for TW to survey different groups of people in Warband and they would have realised that love for the combat system was universal. It had problems, like animation abuses, but it did not need to be completely re-worked in the way that it has been.
 

DainMorgot

Regular
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0
Warband MP drove off players for certain things that are always mentioned. Difficulty, bad spazzing animations and lack of general understanding of the game and combat. Bannerlord does absolutely nothing to address those issues.

1) Difficulty: no decent tutorials whatsoever and matchmaking against veterans
2) Spazzing animations: pump DPI to 2.000, get a glaive or any 2 handed. It's actually worse than warband, because it's unreadable even though animations are better, the blending is horrible and the 360 run back to swing again are pathetic.
3) Understanding and combat: The game does nothing to push players to objectives, it does not even have a low morale sound cue and essentially everything including skirmish is played as deathmatch. Combat is very self-explanatory, too many variables, stats, randomness, ghosthits etc.

Warband was a medieval game and like all medieval games, they have niche communities. Even mordhau that sold like 2 million within a month has 6-7k players daily now that can be considered 'core' to the community. Any game that is hard and has a high skill ceiling and no differentiation between the players (pour them all into 1 matchmaking) will never go multi-hundend thousand online players. Especially on games with directional combat which is naturally a much harder system by itself.

Warband was not failed, it was an old game that went big due to steam sales and it was late already. No matter how much it sold at the end (was about 8 mil, last time I checked?) in the steam achievement page you will clearly see that not a big percentage played even the single player aspect judging from what achievements players got as a percentage worldwide.

To put it bluntly, if devs think warband 'failed' yet they all somehow claim they have a lot of hours in MP, then they should drop the hipocrisy, because they have no idea what the hell they are talking about.
 

.Brandis

Subforum Moderator
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0
Warband MP drove off players for certain things that are always mentioned. Difficulty, bad spazzing animations and lack of general understanding of the game and combat. Bannerlord does absolutely nothing to address those issues.

1) Difficulty: no decent tutorials whatsoever and matchmaking against veterans
2) Spazzing animations: pump DPI to 2.000, get a glaive or any 2 handed. It's actually worse than warband, because it's unreadable even though animations are better, the blending is horrible and the 360 run back to swing again are pathetic.
3) Understanding and combat: The game does nothing to push players to objectives, it does not even have a low morale sound cue and essentially everything including skirmish is played as deathmatch. Combat is very self-explanatory, too many variables, stats, randomness, ghosthits etc.

Warband was a medieval game and like all medieval games, they have niche communities. Even mordhau that sold like 2 million within a month has 6-7k players daily now that can be considered 'core' to the community. Any game that is hard and has a high skill ceiling and no differentiation between the players (pour them all into 1 matchmaking) will never go multi-hundend thousand online players. Especially on games with directional combat which is naturally a much harder system by itself.

Warband was not failed, it was an old game that went big due to steam sales and it was late already. No matter how much it sold at the end (was about 8 mil, last time I checked?) in the steam achievement page you will clearly see that not a big percentage played even the single player aspect judging from what achievements players got as a percentage worldwide.

To put it bluntly, if devs think warband 'failed' yet they all somehow claim they have a lot of hours in MP, then they should drop the hipocrisy, because they have no idea what the hell they are talking about.
?

Where exactly did the devs say that warband was a failure?