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raynmetal

Recruit
M&BWB
Probably the 100th post of its kind, but here goes anyway. The way I see it, Bannerlord has broadly two aspects to its gameplay. The first is the systemic sandbox portion that you mainly interact with via the overworld map, NPC dialogue, settlement capturing/village and caravan raiding, and trading. The second is battles and clan control.

In the patch notes I've read through, the updates seem to be concentrated on improving battles and balancing, with AI-AI system balancing coming in second. The latest news from TW also seem to imply that battle improvements is their focus, with features like the battle terrain system, banner bearers, companion peerage, order of battle, etc., in the works.

At the moment, it feels like Bannerlord already gives me a decent degree of freedom with respect to battles and the like, but the first aspect, which is player interaction with Bannerlord's systems, seems pretty neglected.

Now here comes my question.
1. Does TW plan to completely polish battles before moving on to the system interaction and simulation portion of the game? Or
2. Does it plan to just finish working on battles, and leave the systemic portion in the background?

If it's the second, and if battles are their focus, I guess I want better RP reasons for participating in those battles in the first place. One way this could be accomplished is by implementing a Middle-earth like Nemesis system for clans. I want lords to remember who I am, what I've done, and where I came from, and I want reasons to engage in battle with them besides that they happen to be guarding a settlement I want to capture, or attacking a settlement of mine.

If it's the first, that's great, but I imagine even small changes to how these complex systems work would have far reaching and unpredictable consequences in the game world, and would require a lot more time to test and fix. If that's the case, wouldn't it be better to switch tracks, introduce them sooner, and put battles on the back-burner?

I'm sorry if I seem vague when talking about systems. I don't know what needs done to fix them. All I know is at present I feel like I have very little impact on the game world, and that I have very little reason to engage with the battle system. Map painting in and of itself isn't that fun, and it seems like a waste to have NPCs that are nominally unique but who are effectively just another name on the map.
 

Antaeus

Sergeant
My perspective is that Bannerlord is firstly a tactical FPS battle simulator, and secondly a strategic RPG.

As a tactical FPS battle simulator, it does a good job. But there are areas for improvement - to be truly tactical, the game needs to be able to allow us to place more specific orders E.g: "Cavalry, attack those archers" etc. There are workarounds - such as how you place your units prior to issuing orders, but they are just workarounds. Formation orders must be logical and do the intended things E.g: "Infantry, form shield wall and face the enemy" etc. For the first, there is a long way to go and the perspective from devs seems to be that it isn't what they want, for the second, there has been good progress and things work well, although the AI still needs tweaks in how it uses formations.

As a strategic RPG there are issues. Grand strategy seems to exist to support the FPS side of the game. So true RPG elements are relatively shallow by intent, and focussed on building better characters for the FPS, and financially supporting the character to better fight FPS. I'm OK with this, but I don't really like RPG games, so that's my bias - some players want more depth in this area, others don't. It depends on what you want out of a game. In this respect the game functions reasonably well. Armies are financed effectively, trade and the economy seems to function as intended. You can starve a city out before you assault it, you can flood the market with cheap goods to crash the price.

But as a grand strategy game, the same flaw exists as in the FPS battles. I.e. The lack of ability to issue direct orders E.g: "Army 1, attack that city, Army 2, attack that castle". This leads to there being no real strategy outside the line of sight of the player's party or army. You can hope your faction is massing it's forces in an advantageous way, but in reality it is luck. There is no grand strategy without inter-army co-ordination.

So in summary. The RPG part of the game exists to support the FPS part of the game - to offer it context and plausibility. To give you a reason to fight a battle. But both suffer from the same issue - you can only tell unit groups (armies or battlefield units) to do vague general things attack or defend - these limitations place restrictions on both tactical and strategic gameplay severely and tip the balance of play from intent to coincidence a little too much.
 

Aurex

Regular
WB
At the moment, it feels like Bannerlord already gives me a decent degree of freedom with respect to battles and the like, but the first aspect, which is player interaction with Bannerlord's systems, seems pretty neglected.
I think that's probably the core issue of most complaints about what's wrong with Bannerlord at the moment. We have our battles, but the framework behind them (why we fight them, lasting effects, quest battles, ambushes, assassination attempts and more) is simply as shallow as it could be.
Now here comes my question.
1. Does TW plan to completely polish battles before moving on to the system interaction and simulation portion of the game? Or
2. Does it plan to just finish working on battles, and leave the systemic portion in the background?
Answer based purely on speculation for this one: I *hope* it's 1, but I'm pretty sure it's going to be 2.
If it's the first, that's great, but I imagine even small changes to how these complex systems work would have far reaching and unpredictable consequences in the game world, and would require a lot more time to test and fix. If that's the case, wouldn't it be better to switch tracks, introduce them sooner, and put battles on the back-burner?
If I wanted to be a real optimist I might reach for straws and drag this out: they might be thinking about the fact that making a large, complex framework for the battles to have a meaning (the whole RP aspect of the game) would leave the action part of the game behind for an X amount of months thus scaring away the vast majority of players and potential buyers, who are probably relatively casual gamers.
I'm sorry if I seem vague when talking about systems. I don't know what needs done to fix them. All I know is at present I feel like I have very little impact on the game world, and that I have very little reason to engage with the battle system. Map painting in and of itself isn't that fun, and it seems like a waste to have NPCs that are nominally unique but who are effectively just another name on the map.
Nothing to be sorry about, you were much more eloquent than most and your points all made perfect sense. One could even say that the game is *objectively* lacking in everything *but* battles, and while battles might be fun... if there's no reason to fight them in-game that is not mindlessly cutting down clueless AI puppets using a glaive, then we have a terribly shallow game. (I'm one of those who also believe the battles are lackluster.)
My perspective is that Bannerlord is firstly a tactical FPS battle simulator, and secondly a strategic RPG.
Yep, I would say you're right. The issue (for me) is that it has so, so few RPG mechanics in a game that would be extremely immersive with just some of them. There is so much freedom, but freedom to do... what? Farm enemy lords, rinse and repeat? Deal with the terrible diplomacy? Craft a sword, call it Bannercalibur and barter it for a castle, a city and a single hot lady in your area?
But as a grand strategy game, the same flaw exists as in the FPS battles. I.e. The lack of ability to issue direct orders E.g: "Army 1, attack that city, Army 2, attack that castle". This leads to there being no real strategy outside the line of sight of the player's party or army. You can hope your faction is massing it's forces in an advantageous way, but in reality it is luck. There is no grand strategy without inter-army co-ordination.
I agree with this also. There are mods for Warband that did this almost ten years ago... so I would reckon it's not that difficult to implement. A simple "pause when giving orders" coupled with a TW-style map swap would probably solve the issue in battles, as for the campaign map they would have to rework a lot of mechanics. Armies and lords, right now, are like moths drawn to a flame - whether they're snatched by a bat before they get there is only a matter of luck.
 
I'm sorry if I seem vague when talking about systems. I don't know what needs done to fix them. All I know is at present I feel like I have very little impact on the game world, and that I have very little reason to engage with the battle system. Map painting in and of itself isn't that fun, and it seems like a waste to have NPCs that are nominally unique but who are effectively just another name on the map.
There are different sub-teams in Taleworlds working on different systems at the same time.
So it's not like they prioritize by saying, "everyone, this week we work on the battle AI", but team 1 does that, while team 2 works on strategic balance and someone else on something else. (These teams are fixed and each has an area of responsibility, and its own priority list.)
A good question to ask then is what are their plans, like in the thread title. Because if they don't plan to do something, it probably won't be done, no matter how important you think it is.
They don't have a roadmap, but instead they gave us this in August. For more details, you have to follow the pronouncements of the few TW devs that are sometimes active on the forum, but who also don't like to talk about plans.
What are you asking for (more meaningful NPC interactions) is not quite in Taleworlds' concept of the game (which is basically an action game with minimum dialogs). They have been pressured to flesh this out in many ways (feasts, messengers, diplomacy), but have resisted for a long time now, so don't expect much (i.e. look for mods that do what TW doesn't want to add).
 
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2. Does it plan to just finish working on battles, and leave the systemic portion in the background?
Seems likely TBH, however all we know is they haven't shared much plans for this stuff yet and seem to excuse/accept flaws in the current system and are still currently adding bandaid like updates for the AI rather then changing how they participate in the world. The closest thing they have mentioned is an ability to somehow turn a hired wanderer into a new clan/vassal, no idea when this comes or the details though. That's more for the player, but that's a start. In fact if they are leaving the AI loop mostly as it is, doubling down on giving the player things to do would be the way to go.
 

vito397

Knight at Arms
WBWF&SNWVC
I dont agree that BL is supposed to be primarily a combat simulator and then have just an rpg background for the said combat. I do agree however that it is what bannerlord currently is. And it is not very good at being either of that. There is absolutely nothing to do on the campaign map. Previous games were equal parts of both combat and rpg/grand strategy. If antaeus followed the devblogs or played any previous games, it would be apparent. However TW is itself at fault for revamping a perfectly good 2016 prototype to undergo a massive design change, just to release a 2021 version of its lesser self. It is then no surprise that people will form such shallow opinions on the game. Until the rpg, grand strategy and combat are represented equally as in previous games, it will not suffice.
 

froggyluv

Grandmaster Knight
NW
I dont agree that BL is supposed to be primarily a combat simulator and then have just an rpg background for the said combat

Pretty sure a Dev has stated that exact sentiment -no matter how much we may hate to admit it. I agree, its an awful vision for a game that had the kind of pedigree (including VC and top previous mods) as this one to downgrade the game. You can probably thank console and new the millennial term of "accessible" for that decision.

There is absolutely nothing to do on the campaign map.
This is the crux of the problem in my opinion too. There is absolutely not a f******ing thing of interest to do on the campaign map! You start up nother game hoping this time, something might mysteriously spring out at you in your travels -and it never does. Thats where they failed miserably with the idea of Sandbox -its like sending a kid to a sandbox with literally nothing in it but sand. So you start a new game up -"should I go North, I dunno South? Maybe NorthWest this time..." Why? It doesnt matter as nothing will happen, theres no interesting characters to meet and no reason to enter any city or town because absolutely NOTHING will happen.

The overall combat screens and game are well done but over way too fast and dont really have much character either.
 
This is the crux of the problem in my opinion too. There is absolutely not a f******ing thing of interest to do on the campaign map! You start up nother game hoping this time, something might mysteriously spring out at you in your travels -and it never does. Thats where they failed miserably with the idea of Sandbox -its like sending a kid to a sandbox with literally nothing in it but sand. So you start a new game up -"should I go North, I dunno South? Maybe NorthWest this time..." Why? It doesnt matter as nothing will happen, theres no interesting characters to meet and no reason to enter any city or town because absolutely NOTHING will happen.

Exactly this, they had plans to make crime and IIRC even an underworld where you can have your own gang and have gang-management. so now that its been basically axed, you can't do any street-fighting except for the hell of it, and play a pure bandit/gangleader role and make your way into lordship that way. They still have yet to add any dynamic to the campaign that isn't combat with the end goal of sieging a city and more combat until there is no one left to fight. There was also the whole thing where supposedly cities would have street battles between siege and keep phase, but there has basically been no mention on what happened to that.

Their view of Sandbox(defined as a game where you are given multiple options to achieve a goal(s)) is the most strict and slim implementation, a very small number of avenues to a singular goal: world domination. What does war need? Money and men. How to get men? money and combat experience. How to get money? Trade, fight/loot, tax, and business meta.

With the above mentioned, outside of combat there is no sandbox, because there is literally no secondary options for raising reputation with notables except for questing. Only way you can raise relations with lords is questing, or occasionally saving them. marriage? that is so you can keep playing when you die. bandits? Gotta level somehow, because quests are not going to net you relatively jack pretty quickly.
 

Madeloc

Recruit
I'm one of those who also believe the battles are lackluster.
Your avatar reminds me one character from Baldur's Gate if I'm right. And if I am not, a game from before 2000 I'd say :smile:

But this is not the point of this post.

This is the size and landscape design of the maps related to the fighting armies' sizes.
- Village maps with too many fighters.
- Decor on some maps preventing to see the ennemy (even if vegetation, bushes is very nice).
- The forests, repeating myself but Napoleon or Wellington were never dumb enough to use cavalry in forests.It cannot be, it's undoubtedly against any kind of common good sense in all the universe !!! Ok? a cat walks, a fish swims, a cavalier charges in plains, a footman might hide in the forest possibly. For me it's an inconsistancy. In another post it has been spoken about Azincourt (Agincourt), I don't think cavalry would charge in a forest, rather than archers would be at ease to aim their targets in a forest... that forest thing is for me THE inconstancy of this game, regardless of programming issues or whatever. There are at least too many forest maps.

Except in the case of ambushes for example, but I think TW has already enough work to do before any further suggestions :wink:

Just with a bit of common sense, not all, but a part of some issues could be fixed.
 

Madeloc

Recruit
You can probably thank console and new the millennial term of "accessible" for that decision.
Completely, entirely agreeing with you.

a) As an example, I liked the Dragon Age series, in particular Origins, you could have dozens of spells or abilities, a good Baldur's Gate-like, and in the last opus of the series, Inquisition, you can have only 6 or skills. Why ? due to the number of buttons from consoles' joysticks which clearly brings limits. I like a keyboard with plenty of keys :smile:
b) And accessible is clearly a marketing matter, which rejoins point a)
 

Bovice

Recruit
Agree on most points, I just wanted to point out that unfortunately the "Nemesis" system is patented by Warner Brothers. I would like to see better interactions with the world.
 

Aurex

Regular
WB
Your avatar reminds me one character from Baldur's Gate if I'm right. And if I am not, a game from before 2000 I'd say :smile:
Yes, it's Kivan from Baldur's Gate! :grin:
This is the size and landscape design of the maps related to the fighting armies' sizes.
- Village maps with too many fighters.
- Decor on some maps preventing to see the ennemy (even if vegetation, bushes is very nice).
- The forests, repeating myself but Napoleon or Wellington were never dumb enough to use cavalry in forests.It cannot be, it's undoubtedly against any kind of common good sense in all the universe !!! Ok? a cat walks, a fish swims, a cavalier charges in plains, a footman might hide in the forest possibly. For me it's an inconsistancy. In another post it has been spoken about Azincourt (Agincourt), I don't think cavalry would charge in a forest, rather than archers would be at ease to aim their targets in a forest... that forest thing is for me THE inconstancy of this game, regardless of programming issues or whatever. There are at least too many forest maps.

Except in the case of ambushes for example, but I think TW has already enough work to do before any further suggestions :wink:

Just with a bit of common sense, not all, but a part of some issues could be fixed.
It all made sense with Warband and Mount and Blade because they were cheaply made games from a tiny indie studio. Cutting corners, I mean.
And even then... battles lasted longer and there were generally more enjoyable.
Agree on the villages, a lot. Needs to be smaller, easier controllable "vanguards" instead of 800 people trying to reach one another while the AI derps out.
Love the idea of something allowing you to hide small groups of soldiers and maybe give them bonus when they attack by surprise, a la TW.
Also agree on there being too many forests. A larger, stronger cavalry army would NEVER engage a smaller army in a forest. They'd outmaneuver it and get it when it's exposed. It's another thing if after a huge battles some survivors who are being run over by knights escape to a forest and then try to stop the pursuers, but that's a little bit out of the scope of the game, I believe.
Pretty much all of this could be fixed, sure, we'll see if they actually do it. Ever :smile:
 

Madeloc

Recruit
Also agree on there being too many forests
Thanks for the support, I was starting to feel alone lol
Still I'm pestering since for 9 maps out of 10 - even when taking care of the world map terrain on which I stand - even trying not to be on forest terrain, well 9/10 maps are polluted with trees. Not that I don't like trees IRL lol
 

Apocal

Grandmaster Knight
Thanks for the support, I was starting to feel alone lol
Still I'm pestering since for 9 maps out of 10 - even when taking care of the world map terrain on which I stand - even trying not to be on forest terrain, well 9/10 maps are polluted with trees. Not that I don't like trees IRL lol
Common thing games do, having maps with weird obstructions in places there should be none just to add "flavor."
 

froggyluv

Grandmaster Knight
NW
Agree on most points, I just wanted to point out that unfortunately the "Nemesis" system is patented by Warner Brothers. I would like to see better interactions with the world.

Doubt its enforceable. Only if you plagiarized their code for it - any game is allowed to have enemy AI that plots against the Player. Its like Super Mario laying down a Patent on "Jumping"
 
Probably the 100th post of its kind, but here goes anyway. The way I see it, Bannerlord has broadly two aspects to its gameplay. The first is the systemic sandbox portion that you mainly interact with via the overworld map, NPC dialogue, settlement capturing/village and caravan raiding, and trading. The second is battles and clan control.

In the patch notes I've read through, the updates seem to be concentrated on improving battles and balancing, with AI-AI system balancing coming in second. The latest news from TW also seem to imply that battle improvements is their focus, with features like the battle terrain system, banner bearers, companion peerage, order of battle, etc., in the works.

At the moment, it feels like Bannerlord already gives me a decent degree of freedom with respect to battles and the like, but the first aspect, which is player interaction with Bannerlord's systems, seems pretty neglected.

There is no plan to improve interaction with Bannerlord's system at least in short term, I mean no improvement has been show as planned in the dev diaries.

So if they are cooking any idea probably is to be implemented later ... but I wouldn't be very optimistic.
 

Bovice

Recruit
Doubt its enforceable. Only if you plagiarized their code for it - any game is allowed to have enemy AI that plots against the Player. Its like Super Mario laying down a Patent on "Jumping"
I dunno dude they have a pretty well written claim:

"1. A method comprising:
controlling, by a processor, game events in a computer-implemented game, the game events involving an avatar that is operated in response to input from a player, and a first non-player character that is controlled by the processor to respond to and automatically oppose avatars based on first character parameters defined in a computer memory;

detecting, by the processor, occurrence of a predefined one of the game events involving an interaction between the avatar and the first non-player character;

changing, by the processor, second character parameters defined in at least one of the computer memory or a second computer memory for control of a second non-player character in the game based on the detecting, wherein the second non-player character is controlled by the processor to respond to and automatically oppose avatars based on the second character parameters defined in the at least one of the computer memory or the second computer memory; and

outputting, to an output device, an indication of the second character parameters that are changed by the changing."

So much so that many industry people are really kind of nervous about how many scenarios it can be applied to. How it is coded really has nothing to do with infringing, as long as it has the same effect.
 
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So much so that many industry people are really kind of nervous about how many scenarios it can be applied to. How it is coded really has nothing to do with infringing, as long as it has the same effect.
Unless this is a joke (in which case: well done), thanks for quoting this claim. I think even lawyers would find it ridiculous and prone to be challenged for its unreasonably broad scope and therefore hardly enforceable.

Edit: well, it's not a joke, but it does use more specific language too.
The filing itself uses very specific language – “nemesis characters, nemesis forts, social vendettas and followers in computer games”
Warner Bros. has been trying to get this patent since at least 2015, failing numerous times due to bureaucratic requirements that demand specificity, or being too similar to other trademarks from companies such as Square Enix. This going through means that anyone who wants to procedurally-generate their sub-bosses in anything resembling the nemesis approach may need to talk to WB Games first.

Using the system in a Mount and Blade game is an excellent idea, something several people have toyed with at least, and it should be done. It doesn't have to be an exact copy of the system, it's enough to have a persistent feud starting as a response to a player action and going on with some M&B lord until some kind of resolution.
You can't expect this from TW though, it has to be a mod.
 
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