There's no social distancing on a medieval battlefield, as players pile into Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord.
Its single-player mode encompasses detailed character creation, arena tournaments, trading, and thrilling massed battles; multiplayer offers a balancing act between skillfully co-ordinated siege assaults and spectacularly doomed chaos.
After 12 years, fans of the original Mount & Blade have an official sequel to get immersed in with Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord.
The successes of Chivalry: Medieval Warfare (2012) and Mordhau (2019) proved that appetites for middle ages sword and shield combat never really went away.
Launched for PC on March 30 through Steam's Early Access programme, the sequel – actually an early Middle Ages prequel – Bannerlord blends the storyline quests of Kingdom Come: Deliverance, battlefield command of Total War and fashion choices of Destiny 2 thanks to some gleefully anachronistic sartorial combinations.
Players can inform not only their character's skills and abilities but also their entire life story, decision by decision.
Once out in the fictional lands of Calradia and travelling among its rising factions, they can trade goods between cities, train in the various arts of combat, take part in arena tournaments and build their following by recruiting assistants, clan members and entire armies, as the call of massed battle beckons.
Mount & Blade II finished the week ending on April 5 as Steam's best-selling game, recording an all-time player peak of 248,216 (per SteamDB), far above the highs of revamped predecessor Mount & Blade: Warband (33,054 in 2014); it was approaching a similar tally on Twitch.TV with a release day high of 243,038 viewers (per SullyGnome).
Could Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord release on console, and if so, when?
Warband did, eventually, in 2006, after six years on PC as a PlayStation 4 and Xbox One game.
Asked directly as Bannerlord released, a representative for Mount & Blade studio Taleworlds confirmed via tweet that yes, "we've always said it will be released on consoles, but further down the road", as right now the team is focused on fixing up and improving Bannerlord for its early adopters on PC.
Steam chart for week ending April 5* (steampowered.com)
1. Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord
2. Resident Evil 3
3. Biohazard: RE3
4. Valve Index VR Kit
5. Doom Eternal
6. Football Manager 2020
7. Halo: The Master Chief Collection
8. Tabletop Simulator
9. Half-Life: Alyx
10. Grand Theft Auto V
*Based on revenue rather than units.
– AFP Relaxnews
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