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The Ultimate Warband Guide
A very in-depth guide covering almost every single feature of Mount & Blade: Warband.
Mount & Blade is a single-player, action-oriented medieval role-playing game which takes place in a fictional land named Calradia. The game features a sandbox gameplay style, in which there is no main storyline present. The player is able to join one of the six warring factions, fight as a mercenary, assume the role of an outlaw, help a claimant overtake the throne, start their own faction or simply take a neutral stance.
At the start of the game, the player is presented with a set of options for character customization. The player selects a gender and facial features, then answers a series of multiple-choice questions about the character's past, which generate the character's initial attributes which the player can add to afterwards.
The game has an overland map which is used for traveling which is done by simply clicking the desired destination on the map. Upon encountering enemy parties, the player can try to avoid a conflict, or engage in a battle with them. Each battle is given a renown value, depending on the party size and power of the members of each party. If the player wins the battle, they gain this renown. Renown is an important attribute and allows the player to achieve a higher standing in the game and eventually be offered vassalage by the leaders of one of the six factions. By becoming a vassal, the player is first given control over a a poor village which can be managed. The game makes use of a leveling system where the player gains experience through completing quests, defeating opponents, or training. New levels allow the player to improve attributes, skills, and weapon proficiencies to further develop the character. Weapon proficiencies will also be improved over time by inflicting damage to other opponents with the specific weapon types.
Pros of Mount & Blade: Warband - Huge sandbox with plenty of choice - rule the lands of Calradia. - The ability to command large armies on the battlefield. - Both singleplayer and multiplayer with different gamemodes. - An established modding community. - A great, unique combat system which is reliant on the skill of the player. - One of the few games where controlling a horse is fluid and allows combat while riding. - Hundreds of hours of gameplay. Maybe even thousands!
Cons of Mount & Blade: Warband - Relatively grindy. - Somewhat dated and may take time to get used to.
Rather than having classes to choose from, Mount & Blade: Warband allows you to decide elements of your character's past which determines your starting abilities and equipment. This way the player gets to build their very own hybrid class, being able to be an archer while also wearing heavy armor and wielding both one-handed and two-handed melee weapons. The stats of each background option are predetermined, allowing you to establish a favorite build to use in the future.
Once you have worked out your character's background, you move on to distribute the remaining skill points and attributes to lay the final touches before entering the world. Here are the base attributes, proficiencies and skills for a standard character prior to customization.
Gender: Male: STR +1, CHA +1 Female: AGI +1, INT +1
As seen above, your character's stats also slightly depend on the gender.
A skill grants an ability or buff to a character or a party. The level of the skill determines its potency. Each of a character's skills can be increased from level 0 to level 10. There are 24 skills.
Each skill has a base attribute. A character's level of a skill cannot surpass one third of their level in its base attribute (except through the use of Books). For example, Tactics has a base attribute of Intelligence; if Intelligence is level 9, Tactics cannot surpass level 3. For players, initial skill levels are dictated by your character's background and may exceed this limitation.
The type of a skill determines how it affects the party. There are three types of skills:
Party Skill A party skill grants an ability to the party as a whole. The level of a party skill is chosen from the party member who has the highest level in that skill, regardless whether it is the player or a companion. If another party member also has the same party skill trained to level 2 or higher, a bonus may be awarded (see below).
Leader Skill Like a party skill, a leader skill grants an ability to a party. However, only the party-leader's level in the skill is used.
Personal Skill A personal skill grants an ability to an individual party-leader or companion. In general this ability only benefits the individual. However, in the case of 'Trainer', the whole party benefits from bonus experience. Therefore multiple companions with 'Trainer' can be used to give a greater advantage to the party.
Party Skill Bonuses: If the player character and one other companion have at least level 2 in the same party skill, a bonus will be awarded to the total level. The member who has the highest level in that skill will determine the party skill base value, the member with the second highest level in that skill will grant level bonuses according to the chart:
When a character levels up they are granted a skill point. To assign a player's character's skill points use the 'Character' screen. To assign a companion's skill points:
- Select their name on the 'Party' screen; - Click 'Talk'; - Select 'What can you tell me about your skills?'.
List of Skills
Ironflesh Type: Personal Attribute: Strength Effect: Increases hit points by 2.
Power Strike Type: Personal Attribute: Strength Effect: Increases melee damage by 8%
Power Throw Type: Personal Attribute: Strength Effect: Increases throwing damage by 10%. Some thrown weapons require a few points in Power Throw to use (e.g. axes, javelins).
Power Draw Type: Personal Attribute: Strength Effect: More powerful bows have a minimum Power Draw requirement to use. Power Draw also adds 12% to each hit with the bow, until four levels beyond the bow’s minimum Power Draw requirement; for example, if the bow’s Power Draw requirement is 2, then a skill level of 2 will add 24%, while a skill level of 6 will add 72%, while any level beyond 6 will still add 72%. Finally, higher Power Draw makes powerful bows easier to use by improving your accuracy and the time you can keep your aim steady while the bow is drawn.
Weapon Master Type: Personal Attribute: Agility Effect: Each skill level adds 40 points (starting from 60) to your weapon proficiency limits. Beyond this limit, you cannot increase weapon proficiencies by investing points into them. Weapon proficiencies can also be increased with practice, even beyond the limit set by Weapon Mastery, but the rate of increase will slow down as you get further from the limit.
Shield Type: Personal Attribute: Agility Effect: Each point reduces the damage to your shield takes when blocking a hit by 8%. It also increases your shield’s effective size versus ranged attacks and improves how quickly you can block with a shield.
Athletics Type: Personal Attribute: Agility Effect: Increases your base running speed, either making a lightly encumbered character run faster than normal, or letting a heavily encumbered character move at normal speed. This skill also improves your overland speed on the map if you are not mounted.
Riding Type: Personal Attribute: Agility Effect: All horses have a minimum riding requirement; this skill also increases your speed and agility while sitting astride a steed, but only up to a certain point. Even at 10, this skill will not allow a Sumpter Horse to outrun a Courser or a War Horse to outmaneuver a Sarranid Horse. This skill also improves your overland speed on the map if you are mounted on a horse. Couched lance damage is directly affected by this skill, provided the horse ridden is actually fast enough to allow for it.
Horse Archery Type: Personal Attribute: Agility Effect: Reduces accuracy and damage penalties for using a ranged weapon from a moving horse. Note that no penalties are applied if you are mounted but not moving.
Looting Type: Party Attribute: Agility Effect: Increases amount looted at villages (ex. Cows) and after battles by 10%, and decreases the time needed to loot a village.
Trainer Type: Personal Attribute: Intelligence Effect: At midnight of each day, a hero with the Trainer skill adds experience to every other party member of a lower level than himself. Higher ranks in Training add more experience to each party member. This skill is applied for every hero that is in the party that is a higher level than other members of the party.
Tracking Type: Party Attribute: Intelligence Effect: A single point in Tracking allows you to see tracks left by other parties on the world map. Additional points let you spot tracks from a greater distance and make each track reveal more information as well as last longer before fading.
Tactics Type: Party Attribute: Intelligence Effect: Every two levels of this skill increases your starting battle advantage by 1. Battle advantage determines how many soldiers you can have on the battlefield at the start of a battle and how large your reinforcements will be. This skill will also let you retreat from a battle with fewer casualties.
Path-finding Type: Party Attribute: Intelligence Effect: Increases Party speed on the map by 3%.
Spotting Type: Party Attribute: Intelligence Effect: Increases sight on the map by 10%.
Wound Treatment Type: Party Attribute: Intelligence Effect: Each point adds 20% to your party’s healing speed; it also allows crippled horses to be healed automatically if they are in your inventory. Crippled horses will still take time to heal, however so patience is necessary.
Surgery Type: Party Attribute: Intelligence Effect: Each point adds a 4% chance that a party member, when struck down, will be knocked unconscious instead of dying. This chance is added to a base chance of 25%. Also, the chance applies only to regular troops, since heroes always survive anyway.
First Aid Type: Party Attribute: Intelligence Effect: Each point will allow your hero characters to regain 5% of the health they’ve lost during a particular skirmish or battle. Note that this is added to a base rate of 10%. This skill does not apply until a period of time has passed since it was last used (obviously, only so many bandages can be applied to a man or woman before no more good can come from it).
Engineer Type: Party Attribute: Intelligence Effect: This is used to determine how quickly you can build siege machinery. It also affects the speed and cost at which improvements can be built at a fief which you own.
Persuasion Type: Personal Attribute: Intelligence Effect: Increases the chance that other people will accept your point of view. This lowers the cost of the optional bribe required for successful persuasion. Increases the chance of prisoners accepting to join your army by 4%.
Prisoner Management Type: Leader Attribute: Charisma Effect: Increases maximum number of prisoners by 5. This skill also reduces the chance of prisoners escaping from your party once captured.
Leadership Type: Leader Attribute: Charisma Effect: Increases maximum number of troops by 5, decreases troop wages by 5%, increases party morale by 5% and decreases the chance that a recruited prisoner escapes by 5%.
Trade Type: Party Attribute: Charisma Effect: Decreases trade penalty by 5%.
Your character has four major attributes which affect what you can do in very profound ways. Attributes do two things: they give you some kind of immediate advantage, and they also allow you to increase skills that are dependent on that attribute. Skills can only be raised to one third of a certain attribute (rounded down). For example Ironflesh is a Strength based skill. A character with 14 Strength can only raise his Ironflesh up to level 4. Furthermore, each attribute carries its own benefits. See the section on Skills for more information.
When you create a new character after selecting a background, you will get four points to spend on attributes, and upon each level-up, you will receive one more. These choices cannot be changed once committed, so be sure to spend them wisely!
There are four attributes in the game:
Strength: Abbreviation: STR Description: Each point in this attribute raises your hit-points by 1. Regulated Skills: Ironflesh, Power Strike, Power Draw, Power Throw
Agility: Abbreviation: AGI Description: Each point in this attribute increases your attack speed by 0.5% and gives you 5 bonus Weapon Proficiencies points. Regulated Skills: Weapon Master, Shield, Riding, Athletics, HorseArchery, Looting
Intelligence: Abbreviation: INT Description: Each point in this attributes gives you a bonus skill point. Regulated Skills: Trainer, Tracking, Tactics, Path-finding, Spotting, Inventory Management, Wound Treatment, Surgery, First Aid, Engineer, Persuasion.
Charisma: Abbreviation: CHA Description: Each point in this attribute increases your maximum party size by 1. Regulated Skills: Prisoner Management, Leadership, Trade
Weapon Proficiencies are the player's ability to use specific weapons. There are six in total and they include:
The three melee proficiencies covers the use of swords, axes, spears, maces, etc. Polearms can be one- or two-handed but are considered their own weapon class. Using a weapon will increase its related proficiency.
Certain throwing weapons can be used in melee in Warband; these weapons are usually weak in melee with a very short reach compared to their dedicated melee counterparts.
Weapon proficiency is the skill you use for any weapon. The maximum level for any weapon proficiency is 699.
Increasing your proficiencies allows the character to deal more damage with a melee weapon, and use ranged weapons more accurately. It also improves the weapon attack speed.
Proficiencies can be increased in two ways. One is to simply use the weapon in combat, and over time your skill with it will increase as you hit enemies with it. The other is to spend Proficiency Points gained upon level-up on the proficiency of your choice.
The Weapon Master skill level imposes a cap on all the proficiencies, restricting how these points can be spent. The cap does not prevent increases earned through actual use. Each point of Weapon Master increases the standard proficiency limit. The proficiency cap progression starts at 60 (for a Weapon Master skill of 0) and the cap increases by 40 points for each additional point of Weapon Master skill: 100, 140, 180, 220, 260, 300, 340, 380, 420.
Bear in mind that the higher the Proficiency is, the more Proficiency Points are needed to raise it further. For example, to increase the One-Handed Proficiency by one point when it is at 20 would take one Proficiency Point. If that skill was 380, the player might need to spend between 10 and 16 Proficiency Points to increase the proficiency by one point. This amount varies based on how high your Weapon Master skill is. The higher the skill, the more points one will have to spend.
Proficiencies can be leveled anywhere that combat (or combat training) occurs. Your character will gain experience towards the weapon he/she is using (bare hands/fists do not have a related Proficiency and therefore do not contribute to proficiency progression).
Increasing weapon proficiencies will result in:
- Increased Damage (when using a melee weapon) - Faster Attack Speeds - Increased Accuracy (when using a ranged weapon)
All results are gradual and may need as many as 50 points in a proficiency to see a notable difference. The Weapon Master skill increases the rate at which proficiency points are earned, and raises the spending cap on all proficiencies.
Proficiency increases more quickly when fighting higher level opponents and slower when fighting lower level opponents, in addition to other factors. It is also possible to benefit more from a single attack if the attack was particularly difficult or damaging. The more damage that is dealt with a weapon, the more experience the player earns towards that weapon's proficiency; therefore it may be a good option to couch lances as often as possible if the player uses one, as it can do massive amounts of damage. This means that it is often not necessary to invest weapon points in polearms if it is just for the use of lances, as it rises rather quickly anyway.
Ranged weapon proficiencies increase faster when more difficult shots are landed rather than when damage is done (damage still counts, just not as much). Headshots provide a bonus to the difficulty multiplier as well as shooting while on a moving horse.
As proficiencies reach higher skill levels (around 150 and higher) the number of weapon points needed to increase a proficiency by one skill level is increased. Around 150, it takes 3 or 4 points to increase a proficiency by one point. If the proficiency has already gained experience toward the next level through actual use, fewer weapon points will be required to raise it to the next level. 10 points are gained simply for leveling up, while an additional 5 points are given for every attribute point the player puts in Agility. Eventually, weapon points can be rather worthless when leveling very high proficiencies and it is a viable option to use them with your lower proficiencies in case you need to change tactics, pick up other weapons on the battlefield, or wish to fight in Tournaments where you may not receive your weapon of choice.
There are four main areas where battles take place: on the open map when two or more hostile parties meet, in tournaments organized in town arenas, in siege combat where the player is either defending or attacking a fortification, or in settlements after a triggering event (village is infested by bandits, guards catch the player sneaking in, the player is ambushed, villagers rebel while the player is collectin taxes or the player plunders a village). The number of soldiers each party can hold is limited by the "leadership" skill and the renown of the leader. Participants in a battle can be either mounted or on foot. The player has to indicate the direction in which he wants to swing by moving the mouse accordingly. Aiming with a ranged weapon is also done by using the mouse.
Damage is dealt depending on multiple factors. Aside from each weapon's quality, its effectiveness is also influenced by the character's skill with that type of weapon, and the speed of the player relative to the target: for example, a javelin thrown while running or riding a horse will be potentially more damaging than a javelin thrown while standing still. Further, weapons have certain ranges where they are minimally and maximally effective, which gives the different weapon types different playing styles. A spear, for instance, will do minimal damage when used on an enemy very close to the player, where a hammer could cause maximum damage.
There are six main factions in Mount & Blade: Warband. They are constantly at war, trying to take over each others' territory and fiefs. But they will never conquer a whole faction without the help of the player.
Each faction is distinguished by a different style of army: some have excellent infantry, others excellent archers or cavalry, or a combination of these.
Each faction has a monarch and his vassals, as well as a claimant to the throne who waits for someone (the player) to champion their cause. The claimants can be found in random town keeps, and you can ask a traveller for their location for 30 denars. Claimants will never be found in a town belonging to the faction for which they are the claimant. For example, Prince Valdym the ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ will never be found in a keep belonging to Kingdom of Vaegirs.
The player can join a faction, start a rebellion, or create their own faction. In the original Mount & Blade, a player who has created a faction cannot have lords at their service. They are regarded as a rebel faction, and the player as sole Lord is forced to protect and expand the entire kingdom. This is not the case in Warband; a player may assign companions as vassals and convince rival lords to defect.
Mount & Blade: Warband allows you to create your own Faction and give land to your companions to make them your own vassals. To create your own faction, simply take over a castle or a city of another faction. When you've taken over a castle or a city when you're not in a faction already, it will automatically create a new faction and make you a king of it. To get lords to fight for you in your faction, go to a tavern and hire a companion. Get the companion some good gear and then ask him in the party thing to make him become a lord of your faction.
But before starting a rebellion/creating a faction, make sure other kings and lords likes you. If you don't have any friends, the other factions may eventually declare war on you, or just try to take back your newly captured fiefs.
Some mods allows you to create your own faction by clicking a few buttons, then give it a name and so on. But in native Warband you have to take over another faction's fief without being in a faction yourself.
Kingdom of Nords Ruler: King Ragnar Claimant: Lethwin Far-Seeker Color: Cyan Location: North-West
Kingdom of Rhodoks Ruler: King Graveth Claimant: Lord Kastor of Veluca Color: Green Location: South-West
Kingdom of Swadia Ruler: King Harlaus Claimant: Lady Isolla of Suno Color: Orange Location: West-Central
Kingdom of Vaegirs Ruler: King Yaroglek Claimant: Prince Valdym the B*stard Color: Grey Location: North-East
Sarranid Sultanate Ruler: Sultan Hakim Claimant: Arwa the Pearled One Color: Yellow Location: South
Kingdom of Nords
These merry fellows, who look like Vikings, are the strongest shock troops you can find. A Nord Huscarl might not have a war-horse like a Swadian Knight, but his axe does the talking. When gathering a Nord force you will immediately notice a substantial lack in cavalry, as well as a general lack in proper ranged units. What they lack in those two areas they make up in high quality infantry. Nord infantry uses axes. Be it battle axes, two-handed axes, throwing axes, or forks with axes. They will also have a selection of blades and other thrown weapons. They will use exclusively round shields, and an orderly round shield wall will never be pierced by any attack. Nord Infantry also uses quality armour, which gives them a decent edge against enemy infantry and cavalry, while their shields will block most types of ranged weapons with ease. Due to their sturdiness and weapon choice Nords are useful both as an attack, and a defense force. A dense group of Nord warriors will create an impenetrable wall of shields and axes in the open. During an attack, Nords will storm a castle, and with mild ease destroy any shields the defenders could be using. Meanwhile, a Nord defense force guarding a castle might as well be outnumbered 10:1, given the right circumstances, and still win.
The Nord lack of cavalry and proper ranged weapons does mean they are slow on the outside map and during a battle. When commanding a Nord force, keeping a tight formation means everything. Dispersing your force could mean that enemy ranged weapons or cavalry will cut down individual warriors with ease. If you are severely outnumbered, or forced to fight a force made up of cavalry, your only hope is to bunch up as closely together as possible, and hope for the best. Hide behind a hill, so that enemy archers are not as effective, and once the enemy is a short distance away, charge.
As a starting point, the Kingdom of Nords is a good location. You can easily find good deals for Salt with your neighbours, as well as obtain cheap Iron and Raw Silk from the Kingdom of Vaegirs. Based on my experience, most business types do not work out in “Nordland”, so stick to trading goods. The main danger of Nordland are Sea Raiders. These are high tier outlaws which can with ease take out an inexperienced company of warriors. Stay clear of them untill you are certain you can fight them. As an ally, the Nords have a mildly good position. They have only two neighbours, and a sea behind them.
Kingdom of Swadia
Swadians are something between the English, and the French. They rely on their cavalry, which in a full charge can break even the toughest foes. Although other nations have equally effective “Knights”, the Swadians appear to excel stat wise, and overall use better equipment. In other areas the Swadians do not appear to be that far off from other nations. Their higher tier infantry is decent in combat, and the Swadian sharpshooters make for decent ranged units. However, if you rely on Swadian cavalry too heavily you could wake up in a number of horror scenarios. For example, running out of funds, fighting on hilly terrain, fighting a highly experienced Rhodok force or being forced to “Auto Battle”. Training Swadian Knights is expensive, and their upkeep is terrifying. Their need for flat terrain makes them useless on hilly terrain, and against a forest of spears they will often get bogged down and killed. Often the best technique to win a battle as a Swadian force is to create an infantry main force to occupy the enemy. Then, while the enemy is fighting your infantry, flank with your Knights. Swadians make fine castle defenders and attackers. Although they lack the push of the Nords, or the spears of the Rhodoks, their armour and training cannot be underestimated.
On the other hand, Swadian cavalry *is* expensive. Rebuilding a lost force will cost you a fortune, and up keeping it might drain your coffers entirely. If you are poor, or have problems obtaining a decent income, you might wish to look for alternatives.
As a starting point, Swadia is in the centre of everything. This means you have equally far to all the other towns and nations, but it lacks any “special produce” which you could produce cheaply. As an ally, Swadians can shock, in the positive and negative way. Since they are surrounded from all sides, a war on multiple fronts will leave them broken and divided. On the other hand, when Swadians do come around to attacking a single nation, they can overwhelm with ease.
Kingdom of Rhodoks
The Kingdom of Rhodoks are a fun bunch. Fun, because they are affordable and incredibly disciplined. Rhodoks have two strengths: their spears and their crossbows. Although it is easy to dismiss Rhodok units as “Core Infantry” that only means you fought against the AI. Rhodok crossbowmen are a terrifying sight to behold. Combined with your Rhodok infantry forming a shield and spear wall almost no force can push through them. Cavallery will be annihilated with a well placed Rhodok concentration. Much like the Nords, you do not want to spread your infantry too far. Unlike the Nords though, the Rhodok are not that good on the attack. Their weapons are not designed for assaulting but defending. On the other hand, Rhodok shields offer excellent cover during a siege attack or defense, allowing them to survive for much longer than usual. The strength of Rhodok Crossbowmen cannot be underestimated. They have incredible ranged abilities, while also being half-decent in combat, making it possible to use them as improvised close combat infantry.
Rhodoks do lack cavalry. You might have incredible infantry, but you will be slower on the world map, and you will need to lend some horsemen from another nation if you want to flank the enemy. Rhodok forces can “turtle” forward. Taking on wave after wave of attackers, as they move steadily forward. The problem is that the AI often does not think that way.
The Rhodoks, just like the Nords, are in a nice tight corner. Their nation is often plagued by mountain bandits, and they lack a proper cheap trade good, but their natural terrain works well with their spears, creating a living nightmare for their neighbours, who incidentally rely on cavalry heavily: Swadians, Khergits and the Sultanate.
Kingdom of Vaegirs
The Vaegirs are an interesting force to use. They have Infantry, Ranged and Cavalry units, on the other hand their elite units often lack shields, making them a force highly vulnerable to ranged attack. Vaegir archers are also the best foot bowmen in the game, as such you have a force which is mildly vulnerable to a ranged attack, while also being able to retaliate with their own barrage. Unlike other armies, Vaegir top-tier units prefer two-handed weapons, making them highly dangerous units to face off against, if outnumbered. Both Vaegir Knights and the Vaegir Guards will chop away at the competition. The question is how penalizing is their lack of shields? It all depends on the situation. When faced against Rhodoks you could find yourself losing more men due to the crossbow barrage, on the other hand you have something to counter ranged units, Vaegir cavalry.
In a siege assault situation your main weakness is a possible lack of shielding, making you lose units much more quickly. In an open field that could also be a problem if you want to play defensively Use terrain to your advantage, or use your force just like you would play as the Swadians. Make your “main force” occupy the enemy while you flank with the cavalry.
As a starting point, the Kingdom of Vaegirs is not a bad place to be at. They might have tundra bandits and initially some very weak units, but the trade benefits are very high. Vaegir ports tend to have some lower priced Raw silk, making it a good place to trade for higher cash. Finding some cheap iron will also take you a long way. Trading with the Nords for Salt will only make you richer. Vaegirs tend to have little to no problems with neighbours. Although they could be considered surrounded they can cope with a single or two opponents at the same time.
The Khergits have one strength no other army can match, almost every single one of their units is on horseback. A fully developed Khergit force will have Lancers and archers on horseback, making it the most mobile force in the game. On the world map they will move quicker than other armies, and on the battlefield, open fields is what a Khergit commander would love most. However, this reliance on cavalry is risky, and although Khergits excel on the field of battle, during a siege they are much weaker than one would wish. The Khergits are masters of firing off horseback. Under the player’s control they can circle an enemy force indefinitely, untill the foe is so badly bloodied that a Lancer charge will finish them off. Under the AI, Khergits under perform, since they will often charge into an enemy force, making them easy prey for Rhodoks or Nords. The Khergit Lancers are weaker and less armoured than other cavalry formations, but they can still hold their ground, and during the initial charge, take out a number of foes with their lances.
Khergits are very poor while defending or attacking a castle. Their lancers will be outperformed by most equal or higher tier infantry. Although their archers will pepper away at a foe, it is a bad idea to assume that you can take out the enemy quicker than they can take out your infantry. As such, when protecting your castle, always include infantry from another nation. Lancers are simply unreliable. Meanwhile, if you face against them, bring a fast(er) horse, a high concentration of infantry or a very big shield.
As a starting point, the Khergits have the best towns to produce and sell dyed textiles. Although it is the most expensive business type, it is the most profitable in Khergit lands. Trade in their territory is risky on lower levels, due to Steppe Bandits. If you have a small caravan, or poorly trained men, Steppe Bandits will mob you with their horses. They are also incredibly quick, making it very hard to outrun them. As an ally Khergits are surrounded by foes all around. Swadians, Sultanate and Veagirs are all risky sparring partners. As a commander, you will have access to the fastest army around, so if you do not want to fight enemy armies, you might as well hit and run weaker lords or raid villages and flee before the enemy can retaliate.
The Sarranid are a new addition to Mount & Blade. Some would say that they are a mirror image of the Swadians. The Sarranid Mamluke and Swadian Knight go head in head for the title of the best cavalry in Mount and Blade. However, unlike the Swadians, the Sarranid suffer from a sub-par high-tier infantry. The Sarranid Guard is considered the weakest high level infantry in the game. This is because they lack any apparent weakness, while also lacking any strength. They are considered generalists, but as such, they can be adapted for different tasks. Meanwhile, Sarranid Master Archers are devastating ranged units. On the level, if not above, of the Veagir Marksman, Sarranid Master Archers are well armoured, with excellent ranged abilities. However, just like all other ranged unit types, the Master Archers lack any close combat abilities.
What is the weakness of the Sarranid? Their infantry for one, but just like the Swadians, it is easy to be carried away and invest your money into elite cavalry. Not only that, but the upkeep will be comparable of a full Swadian force. If you do not have a substantial income you will become a very poor lord, very quickly.
As a starting point, Sarranids suffer a bit from the same problem as the Swadians. They lack any specific low-cost and profitable good. Another problem is the size of the Sultanate. Villages and towns are often dispersed, and reaching one end of the Sultanate from the other could take even two days. This is also a problem when fighting wars. Reacting quickly to events on either side of the Sultanate is nearly impossible. Among their neighbours you have the Khergits, Swadians and Rhodoks. With a trained force a war against the Khergits does not pose any threat, however Swadian and Rhodok forces will stand on equal terms with you. Let us also not forget about Desert Bandits, who, just like Steppe Bandits, will outrun you, and if you lack an experienced force, annihilate you.
When you become a vassal you will be granted the poorest village in the faction you've joined, usually a village that recently has been looted. If you are playing as a female, the lord who owns the castle associated with that village will dislike you, and deny you entry to his castle. Once your relation with that lord improves, you will gain access to it. If you are playing a female character the king of your chosen faction will say that giving a fief to a woman will cause other nobles to think he has been 'bewitched'. You can choose to fight fiefless for the king, or reconsider taking your vows of allegiance. However, when a female character with a lot of renown (in order of 700+) becomes a vassal she will probably have no trouble getting a fief like a male character. Having a much lower renown isn't a hindrance as long as you're on good terms with your liege.
In Warband, a vote is cast to decide which lord gets the property every time a castle or town is captured by your faction. By telling a vassal that you support his choice, you will be rewarded with some points in relation towards him/her. This can be done once for each village, town or castle your faction acquires, which should net you a lot of friends in the long run. Another way is to work as a mercenary against the faction you'd like to join, and any time you capture a lord (especially the king) you will usually gain a bonus to your relationship with that lord along with bonus honor when you release him from captivity. Once many of the lords in that faction like you (again, especially the king), you should have no trouble gaining fief after fief once you swear fealty.
A king may ask you to become his vassal. This may occur after winning all tournaments, or after achieving a certain level of renown while having an overall positive standing with that faction.
The villages, towns, and castles scattered about the map are known collectively as fiefs. Each one is owned by a vassal or, in the case of the capital city of a faction, the ruler of that faction. They can change hands a few different ways, the most common way being during wartime. Villages, unlike castles and towns, cannot be captured directly. Instead, they are associated with a nearby castle or town and when the castle or town is captured, so is the village.
Initial Lords Every time you start a new game, the ownership of villages and castles is randomized with only a few exceptions. Towns are typically assigned to powerful lords and do not change.
Acquiring a Fief There are a few ways of getting hold of fiefs, most of which involve capturing them after a siege.
Personal Fiefs Personal fiefs can be obtained by capturing a town or castle while not a vassal of any lord. This can be difficult as defenders of towns and castles are hundreds strong and if you are not a member of a faction you will not have any allies to help you. Once captured, it can be very hard to keep a fief under your control, as factions may decide to declare war on you at any time and huge armies, often with more than a thousand men, will attack each village one by one, which is extremely difficult to stop.
Owning a Fief
Once you have a fief, there are a few things to remember.
Taxes Owning a fief allows you to collect taxes from the populace every week (taxes accumulate, so you don't have to visit every week). In Warband, you automatically receive taxes and do not have to visit to collect them. Towns earn the most base taxes, villages second, and castles the least. The prosperity of each fief also affects the amount of taxes they produce. The prosperity of a castle is affected by the prosperity of the village that is geographically attached to that castle, even if the village is not owned. Usually it is the case that the the player will not own a connected castle and village, unless they have large numbers of both villages and castles.
You can raise the prosperity of a town by making sure that its caravans reach their destinations, and by completing quests from its Guildmaster. For villages, stop it from being raided, kill bandits if they invade, build improvements, and get quests from its Village Elder. Also, when repeatedly purchasing imported goods from a town or village, the prosperity will eventually drop due to the lack of these goods, and they will no longer be available until trade has returned them, which can take a rather long time. For castles, the same methods can be employed on adjoining villages, but improvements cannot be built unless the adjoining village is owned. The profitability (net income) of a castle can be improved by reducing the size of the garrison.
Reputation Once a village belongs to you or to your faction you can't loot and burn it, although you can still force the peasants to give you supplies. If you are already disliked by a village that becomes your fief, the villagers will remember and hate you, but you can still collect your taxes as usual. However, you will be unable to get recruits from this village. You can see your reputation in brackets in the description at the top along with a word describing how much they like or hate you, for example "acceptive", "resentful", "hate you with a passion", etc.
If you intend to take part in sieges to earn further fiefs for yourself, you should avoid raiding nearby villages so that they will still like you when you own them. Burning villages also decreases their prosperity, which affects the taxes and recruits you can collect, so it is a good idea to make sure any villages you may come to own are in as good a condition as possible.
Wealth The taxes a fief generates are linked to its wealth, ranging from very poor to very rich. Improving a fief's wealth increases taxes and the amount of recruits you can obtain there. Improving a fief's wealth is no easy task; once it is looted, the wealth will drop back to very poor for a rather long time. Improving the wealth is done by a range of actions.
Increasing reputation: this represents how happy the residents are with your rule. When your people hate you they will leave first chance they get and the village will not grow beyond average, so you must improve the reputation to 0 or higher to gain any real wealth in your fiefs.
Patrolling: villagers need to go to a nearby town to obtain new resources and to sell their own surplus. Patrolling your terrain to make sure your villagers are not attacked and enslaved along the route is needed if you wish to improve the fief's wealth, which can pose a problem to lords who have a wide range of fiefs.
Trade: if the town the villagers trade in is poor, prices will be high, resulting in less affordable goods. Your villagers notice this too, as the wealth of the town largely influences the wealth of the villages and vice versa. A town with two poor villages and one average will tend to become poor after some time, due to the lack of production in the villages, and therefore lack of production in the town itself. The town will increase back to average if the villages near it are at average too, as this allows the town to produce more trade goods which will attract traders who will also bring new goods. After some time this will increase the wealth of the town and give your village a chance to increase its own wealth, as it is directly linked to the town.
To successfully improve the wealth of your fiefs, you should do all of the above, and for an extended amount of time. Depending on your own goals it might not be worth the effort to increase the wealth, as it takes a long time to actually do so and if you stop patrolling the region for a short amount of time the bandits will return and rob your villagers blind.
Capturing fiefs as a member (vassal) of a faction can only happen when your faction is at war with another faction. The marshal of your faction will summon lords of the same faction, then ride into enemy territory, possibly capturing castles and towns along the way. Keeping a captured fief for yourself (even if you captured it without the help of allies) is not guaranteed. The calculation to decide who gets a captured fief is based on renown, the current number of properties they own, and an element of luck:
- Take renown and add 500 as a base value.
- Divide by the 'ownership factor' which is 1 + (owned towns *3) + (owned castles*2) + (owned villages). If you own two castles and three villages, the score would be 1 + 0 * 3 + 2 * 2 + 3 = 8
- Multiply by a random number between 50 and 100.
- The one who conquered the fief gets his score multiplied by 1.5.
- Add twice the relationship value with the king to the score.
- If you captured the fief yourself and did not request that the fief be awarded to you, your score is reduced.
The player is only given the fief if he gets the highest score of all lords in his faction.
In Warband, you can try to persuade other vassals that you deserve the fief. If successful, their renown may be added to yours in the calculation. You can also recommend other vassals for fiefs, and this sometimes seems to have the odd reverse effect increasing the likelihood of the recommending player getting the fief, rather than the lord they recommended. There may be other elements in Warband that aren't linked as exactly to the formula above. For example, new lords have a strong likelihood to receive a fief if they have none. As an example, once one takes vassalage, it is rarely too long before they receive a fief, even though the renown of other lords in the faction is much higher.
Tips & Tactics
While playing, it may be helpful to consider the following things:
- If you plan on using Two Handed Weapons, you may want to consider using Polearms, as they have longer reach. However, since the damage output is greater when the target is farther away, you may find yourself in trouble if surrounded by enemies at close range.
- In Warband, some Throwing Weapons can be used as melee weapons by pressing "X" and can be switched back to a throwing weapon by doing so again. Firearms can also be used in this way in With Fire & Sword, but the only throwing weapons are grenades, which cannot be used in melee.
- Even though your companions have the same proficiency for every weapon type, some companions initially have skill points spent on Power Draw or Power Throw, which means that they should use a throwing weapon or bow since those skill points cannot be reclaimed.
- Your starting proficiencies are affected by the choices you made during character creation.
- While on Poor AI settings, enemies will not hold their shields up at extreme distances between the player and themselves, so landing arrows or bolts on Poor AI settings is dramatically easier.
- Since experience is higher when higher damage is dealt, it is often useful to use a horse whenever you can to multiply your damage through speed.
To use cheats, you must configure your game to allow cheats: After opening up the game launcher, before you click Play Mount&Blade, go to Configure. From there, go to the Game tab and check the box next to Enable Cheats.
However it must be noted that playing with Cheats Enabled will stop you from receiving STEAM achievements (Mount & Blade: Warband). If cheats are used you may disable them again at any time to re-enable Steam achievements since they only disable Achievements for the sessions they are used.
It is an extremely useful tool for modders as it helps to "speed" gameplay time so features normally restricted to late game can be accessed far sooner.
A word of warning though, when using the experience cheat to level yourself up (to some ridiculous level like 1000+), the merchant's misson will be next to impossible to complete. When rescuing his brother from the bandit hideout, you will be faced with hundreds upon hundreds of looters.
- Ctrl+H Fills up your health completely.
- Ctrl+Shift+H refills your horse's health.
- Ctrl+F4 delivers a critical amount of blunt damage to a random enemy (doesn't hurt horses).
- Ctrl+Alt+F4 / Ctrl+Shift+F4 delivers a critical amount of blunt damage to all characters on the enemies side. Keep in mind that Alt+F4 usually shuts the game down since it is the hotkey for "close".
- Ctrl+F6 delivers a critical amount of blunt damage to a random character on your side.
- Ctrl+Alt+F6 / Ctrl+Shift+F6 delivers a critical amount of blunt damage to all characters on your side.
- Ctrl+F5 causes the AI to take the control of the player character. You can only command yourself with the party command keys and you will cheer at the end of the battle, just like the NPCs.
- Ctrl+F3 delivers a critical amount of blunt damage to the player character.
- Ctrl+F9 toggles slow motion.
- Ctrl+F11 freezes time.
- Ctrl+X gives you 1000 experience points while on the character screen, 100 experience points to the selected soldier when on the party screen, and 1000 denars when on the inventory screen. (disabled for trial version)
- Ctrl+W gives you 10 points in each of the six Weapon Proficiencies when you're on character screen. Note that this does not actually increase the proficiency by 10--it simply allots 10 points in that category.
- Ctrl+Left Click teleports the party to the cursor (when on the map screen).
- Ctrl+T lets you see all parties and tracks on the map screen.
- Ctrl+L gives you an automatic level up. Be warned though, going from level 62 to 63, the game overflows the level, instantly bumping you up to level 2058. This may at first seem awesome, though you will now have to contend with 2068 bandits infesting villages, and every hostile enemy running from you no matter the difference in numbers. It also causes the game to crash frequently, even on higher-end systems.
- Pressing Ctrl+~ (tilde, next to the number row) opens the console. Entering "cheatmenu" will activate the cheatmenu, which allows for a wide variety of debug cheats (for those whose where tilde doesn’t work press ctrl+¬ [below escape]) .
- To deactivate the cheatmenu, bring the console back up and enter "nocheatmenu".
- In Warband, alternative way to bring up cheatmenu, since that tilde key doesn't work on every computer, is to go to "mount and blade warband\modules\native" and open "menus" -txt. There, look for mno_tutorial_cheat 1 31 2 1 0, and change the last value from 0 to 1. Save the "menus" on your desktop, change the name of the original menus into "back up" or something as easily recognizable. Now move the new menu into your native dictionary. For this to work, you also need to start a new game. When creating the new character, you get the option "CHEAT!" when choosing the town as your first destination. Choose "CHEAT!". Enjoy!
The following cheats are done by exploiting the character import/export feature.
- Edit your character stats (Note: this is disabled in trial versions):
1. Go to your character page and click on statistics
2. Click export character
3. Minimize the game screen
4. Go to your documents
5. Find the file Mount&Blade Warband Characters (or 'Characters' in the file Mount&Blade Warband)
6. Open the file labelled the name of your character
7. Change what you want e.g. delete the money you have and type in a bigger sum
8. Save and exit it
9. Go back to the game
10. Go back to the statistics page and click Import Character
Cheating with Books:
1. Ensure you have excess money
2. Go to your character page and click on statistics
3. Click export character
4. Import it into newly created character - you will find out that your stats, level and cash was transferred from imported character
5. Find a book merchant and buy all readable books
6. Read them all (this might take a while)
7. Export the character, and repeat!
Your party is the one of the most important aspects of the game: within it you can hire troops (from villages) and secondary heroes who will help you in battle. NPCs are important because they cannot die in battle (they just get wounded). As your renown grows so will the size of your party and the amount of heroes you can control. There are sixteen heroes in the game you can hire from taverns. It is important to level up your Persuasion so you can handle inner party disputes, as not all heroes will like each other. Your party has two main parameters:
Morale influences your moving speed and when it becomes low your troops will start deserting. You can increase your morale by winning battles, tournaments, having a variety of food, completing quests, razing villages and raising your leadership skill. You can lose morale from starvation, losing battles, and failing quests (the last one is actually true for many NPC heroes). Morale of nation-based troops is also greatly negatively affected if you are waging a war against their home nation. Also, fighting more than 1 or 2 times a day will lower morale.
Morale Modifiers - Base Morale: your base morale will always be 50.
- Party Size: the more men you have in your party, the higher the morale penalty will be. Note that when removing party members, this penalty will decrease by 1 each, but a temporary 1 point penalty will be incurred to Recent Events. This means you are left with no immediate net change.
- Leadership: morale bonus provided by your Leadership skill.
- Food Variety: quite self-explanatory, every type of food has a morale bonus in its description.
- Recent Events: any events like winning tournaments, battles, or completing quests will give you a large morale bonus.
The party size represents of course how many troops you can take with you. Party size is affected by your renown, charisma, and leadership skill.
Size Modifiers - Base Size: the base size of your party is 10
- Leadership Bonus: every level in the Leadership skill will increase your party size by 5.
- Charisma Bonus: every level in the Charisma attribute will increase your party size by 1.
- Renown Bonus: your renown heavily affects your party size. For every 25 renown, party size is increased by 1.
- Lord: being a lord (having at least one fief) adds 10
- Marshall: being the marshall of the troops of a sovereignty adds 20
Goods can be purchased at villages or towns. They cannot be directly used (although food is consumed automatically), but you can buy them and sell them at other towns or villages for a profit, and if you own a Productive Enterprise, you can give your master craftsman raw materials instead of having him buy them from the market (although he will usually be able to get them for a good price). Likewise, you can tell your master craftsman to hold onto the goods the enterprise produces so that you can trade them yourself for higher profit.
Prices The prices of goods are highly variable, and based upon an abstract model of Supply and Demand, which is covered in theTrade page.
True Value All goods have a True Price- this is the arbitrarily game-assigned relative value of each good, but this is rarely ever what the actual price of the goods will be - these are instead modified based upon the local abundance or scarcity of that product, so that you can purchase goods where they are abundant and cheap, and sell where they are scarce, and hence valuable and pocket the profit. If you wish to engage in trade, only purchase goods when they are notably less than the True Value listed unless you are sure that there is a town where the scarcity of the good will drive up the value even further.
Type of Goods Many goods are not used directly by towns or villages, and are used only as a raw material for the creation of another type of good. Finished products, meanwhile, consume those raw materials in their creation, and part of trade is based around moving supplies of raw materials to the places where they are turned into finished products. Most food items are already a "finished product" as soon as they are created. Grain is unique it can be made into two finished products, and velvet is unique in that it requires two different raw materials. The player can also own a Productive Enterprise which allows the player to convert a small amount of those raw materials into finished products in their cities, as well.
Food Other goods are Food. You need to carry food in your inventory for your army to eat, or they will grow hungry, and morale will suffer greatly. Any good that is a food will have a quantity value (where a larger quantity value will feed more soldiers for a longer period of time) and a food morale bonus for that food. Having a variety of different food types is an easy way to improve morale.
It is worth noting that some foods will spoil after two or three days, and lose most or all of their value. On the first night, the good gains a "fresh" modifier (for example, "Fresh Pork",) and then "day old" and so on in increasingly worse modifiers until they are inedible and sell for nearly nothing. These goods have high morale values when fresh, but should be traded away quickly, before they spoil. Goods only spoil when in your possession - goods in markets or your storage do not spoil no matter how much time passes.
Household Goods Still other goods are Household Goods - you should have a supply of these goods in your court if you own a fief, where they will be used in Feasts to raise relations to other lords.
Others Other goods have no use except in trade, and are just Trade Goods.
Finally, all goods have a weight - typically a rather significant amount of it, at that. Weight can slow down your Party Speed, and it is worth taking along some extra horses to serve as pack horses and maintain your overland speed if you want to trade and still hunt down bandits during your trips between towns.
Trade is a skill available to players and NPCs. Ranks in this skill reduce the difference in price between what you can purchase a good for and what you can sell a good for by 5% per rank. As a party skill, if your character has 10 ranks, you can have a maximum effective party skill level of 14 ranks in trade, worth a 70% reduction in the trade penalty. In any given settlement there will be a buy price (what you pay), a sell price (what they pay), the true price (the game-assigned base value of the good), and a market supply modifier (which multiplies the value of the true price based upon local abundance or scarcity of that type of commodity).
With no skill in trade, you purchase commodities for 110% of their true value times their market supply modifier, and sell commodities for 90% of their true value times their market supply modifier. With the maximum trade skill, you can change this to purchasing at 103% and selling at 97%, giving you an edge in expanding your profit margins, although exploiting market supply, even with no skill, will always yield far more profit than simply reducing the penalty you have in trade alone will.
Weapons and armor (which you can acquire in abundance from fallen enemies), however, have a radically different trade penalty, with you purchasing arms and armor at around 200% of their true value, and selling at around 20% of their value before trade skill comes into play. This is to ensure that simply looting the corpses of enemies isn't far more profitable than any other way of making money in the game.
Trade skill will also affect how long it takes to collect taxes.
Mount & Blade operates an economy just like any society: people specialize in the production of certain goods (like wheat) and sell their surplus goods to other people who specialize in the production of a different good (like ale). In this way, people do not need to produce everything, as they can produce one thing and trade for the rest. You can benefit from this mechanism. Every town and village in the game will produce several different kinds of goods. Generally, villages only produce "raw material" goods like wool, grapes, or chicken, while towns have the industry to create "finished product" goods like wool cloth or wine.
Villages produce raw materials based upon the village prosperity, with more prosperous villages producing more goods.
Towns, meanwhile, consume raw materials when they produce finished product goods. Producing a unit of wool cloth consumes a unit of wool, and since towns do not produce their own raw materials, they are dependent upon their villages supplying them (and by extension, their peasants not being attacked on the road to the town when they go to trade).
Some goods are neither raw materials for other products generated at villages nor finished products produced from an associated raw material item generated in towns. These goods can be produced either by villages or towns, although it is worth noting that most of these goods are foods only produced in villages. If towns produce these products, however, such as Spices being produced at Tulga, they are produced directly at the town itself, and do not require any trade or any villages to produce that item, and production is based solely upon that town's productivity score, bypassing the need for villages for that one type of product.
Players can also own a Productive Enterprise at a town, which will produce finished goods from raw materials just like towns will, but where the productivity of the facility is fixed. A player-owned ironworks will turn 2 iron into 2 tools regardless of town productivity, which may be a lot or a little depending on the relative prosperity of the town.
The villages attached to castles will send their peasants to the nearest town of their own faction, supplying that town with their raw materials. In the event that a castle is taken far from the rest of the faction (such as Vaegers taking a Rhodok castle), this can result in a long and vulnerable trade route for the peasants to follow, but occasionally providing towns with access to goods they normally would not have, and potentially upsetting normal town supplies of certain goods if they rely upon a castle village whose castle was taken by an enemy faction.
Villages and towns also consume certain commodities at a given rate. Food items, for example, tend to be consumed fairly quickly and regularly. Raw material items are consumed only in production of finished goods unless they are also food items (like grapes). Some items, like Velvet, are used rarely, if ever, and as such, almost no town will actually have shortages of that product.
Supply & Demand
The entire model of "supply and demand" in Mount and Blade is based around a "market supply modifier", which is a number that multiplies the value of a given type of good. This is ultimately just a simple number for each type of trade good for each town and village in the game that tries to abstract the complex concept of Supply and Demand without having to track how many of each village has of which goods. While the items in the market are the "Supply" of a given market, the presence or absence of these items ultimately don't matter to the price of goods or productivity in a town or village, only the market supply multiplier does. This is probably to represent a supply that is simply not for sale, but the mechanics of the system are sometimes off. Even while this is just a single simple value, however, the sheer number of these simple values, and the way in which they interact with one another, ultimately creates a complex and difficult-to-predict market.
Talking to the Guild Master about trade in a town will let you see all of the goods whose market supply multipliers are over 1100, with the format of saying something like, "We have shortages of Trade Good (1234), and other commodities," where the (1234) is the market supply modifier, representing, in this case, prices that are 123.4% of that product's true price. (There is no way to directly see the market supply modifier of a village, you can only infer through the prices they will trade at.) A market supply modifier of 1000 is an "average" price, where goods are worth exactly their true value (plus or minus your trade penalty when you actually buy or sell). When the market supply modifier goes up, goods are bought and sold for more, and "shortages" occur when the value is over 1100 (which means 110% normal prices), and villagers from other towns will start to tell you that you can get "very high prices" of a good at a market supply modifier of 1300 or more (when they buy and sell for 130% or more of the normal value). Market supply multiplier values below 1100 are never directly displayed, although they can be inferred through understanding the other mechanics of pricing.
Over time, as towns and villages consume products, the supply multiplier rises, and when goods are produced, that lowers the supply multiplier. Likewise, purchasing goods raises the supply multiplier of a good, and selling lowers the supply modifier of a good.
It is important to note that every time you buy or sell a good, the market supply modifier for that good changes at the moment that you have transferred the good. The magnitude of the impact of each unit you buy or sell varies depending upon the type of good and size of the market you are buying and selling from, but generally, you can expect the price to change by about 2% or 3% of the base value (the market supply modifier will go up or down about 20 to 30 points) each time you make a purchase or sale. This applies before you can sell the next item in your inventory, meaning that if you purchase and sell 6 units of a single type of good at a time, the price of the sixth unit will be 10% to 15% higher or lower than the price of the first unit. Hence, buying and selling in bulk ultimately winds up diminishing your overall per-unit profit margins.
Although one should not generally purchase and sell the same good from the same market, it is worth noting that purchasing a unit of a trade good and then selling it back to the same market will not result in the town having the same market supply modifier as before you purchased and sold that unit. Selling a unit of Ale at 140 denars, leaving the menu, returning, purchasing it back, leaving the menu, then returning again, for example, will show the price of that same unit of Ale to now be selling at 138 denars. In other words, selling goods to a town in a "shortage" of a certain good will cause that good's market supply modifier to go down by a greater amount than buying that good back will cause it to go back up. The cause of this discrepancy is currently unknown, but may have to do with a quadratic change in the market supply modifier as the modifier becomes higher (reflecting more desperate shortages of a good), or may have to do with the overall impact that a purchase or sale to a market will have on the market supply modifier is at least partially based upon the overall number of goods that are in the market at that time.
Furthermore, you can "exchange" goods like a 1/30 unit of cheese for a 30/30 unit of cheese, but while the game pays less for a mostly-eaten unit of food, it actually still counts exactly the same as a full unit of food. Doing that exchange of 1/30 cheese for 30/30 cheese while there is a minor shortage will actually wind up dropping the price of cheese by 1%, as if there were more cheese in the market after buying a full wheel of cheese, and selling back only crumbs, rather than there being less cheese (and higher prices) that one would rationally expect.
To get around this issue, it may be advisable to purchase items in bulk where they are cheap, and then sell them only one or two at a time at each town or village you come across until you have sold them all to prevent the price of the goods from dropping too far.
Unlike real life, the "supply and demand" system of Mount&Blade only seems to demonstrate the "supply" portion of the economics picture. When prices for beef get too high, townspeople will not just eat more pork instead (this principle of economics being called a "substitute good"), nor will low beef prices drive down demand (and hence prices) for pork.
Likewise, what is called the "elasticity of demand" (which explains how much price impacts whether or not customers will consume a product) has only rudimentary implementation. Towns that produce bread, for example, but cannot import enough grain, will continue to make bread even after the supply multiplier has been pushed to the point where the grain is more valuable than the bread they are turning it into. (This is especially obvious with Dhirim's bread/grain supply and Ichamur's wool cloth/wool supply). While this is unconfirmed, the only function of a shortage seems to be that the greater the shortages of goods become, the more impaired productivity becomes in general, meaning that they will still be turning wool into wool cloth even after they have "run out of wool", just at a lower rate.
This ultimately means that the largest "shortages" (and hence, the largest swings between how low you can purchase the product and how high you can sell the product) will occur only on "raw material" goods, like iron or flax, between towns and villages where much of that material is produced, but none of the related "finished product" goods are produced (and hence, with nobody consuming them, the market supply multiplier only goes down over time), and selling them to the towns where that raw material is not produced, but the finished product for that raw material is produced (and hence, supply is continually exhausted, but never renewed without trade).
It is important to note, however, that there are no cities where prices for some goods are automatically very low or high - prices fluctuate solely upon the rates of production and consumption in the market. Because each village and town tends to keep producing the same goods, and tends to have voids in their production in the same goods, however, (outside of player-owned facilities which can drastically change local supply,) there are some very predictable patterns for where prices for one good will be cheap, and another will be expensive.
For example, in Warband, the town of Halmar produces Bread, Ale, Wine, Leatherwork, Tools, Wool Cloth, Pottery, and Oil. Its only directly attached village is Peshmi, which produces Pork, Chicken, Bread, Grain, Sausages, Hides, and Wool. Without the support of castle villages, and assuming Peshmi is not continually looted and raided, this means that four of the eight products of Halmar (Bread, Ale, Leatherwork, and Wool Cloth) are produced from raw materials produced by Peshmi, and as such, prices will generally be dependant upon how much Peshmi is raided, but usually fairly low for these finished goods. One of the eight products of Halmar (Pottery) is a direct product of Halmar, and needs no supply from trade to produce, although they produce more than they need, causing Pottery to typically be inexpensive in Halmar so long as it maintains high productivity. Wine, Tools, and Oil, meanwhile, are produced in Halmar, but the raw materials (Grapes, Iron, and Olives) are not, causing the prices for these raw material goods to become unusually high when Halmar has high productivity.
Meanwhile, neither Halmar nor its villages does not produce or use as a raw material Velvet, Raw Silk, Dyes, Linen, Flax, Furs, Date Fruit, Honey, Dried Meat, Smoked Fish, and other food items. The raw materials Raw Silk, Dyes, and Flax, therefore, will only have average or low prices, even though they are not produced there, because they are never consumed in the production of finished products. The food items and goods like spices and furs may have higher or lower prices, depending on how much of those products that particular market likes to consume, although consumption of these types of goods tends to be much slower than consumption of raw materials, so places where prices were once high can be brought down low if you try to exploit a trade route too frequently.
Halmar is a town that is frequently visited by caravans by virtue of its central location, however, which means that its lack of supply from its villages can often be mitigated by caravans trading at Halmar. A town further on the edges of the map will often have more extreme variations between the market supply modifiers of the goods it produces itself and the ones it must import than a town near the center of the map.
The nearby castle village of Ehlerdah, attached to Reindi Castle (initially owned by Swadia) will also provide Pork, Chicken, Bread, Grain, Fruit, Cabbages, Iron, Wool, and Pottery to Halmar if Reindi Castle is in the possession of the same faction as the one that holds Halmar. If this is the case, Iron will no longer fetch such a high price at Halmar's market, as Iron can be supplied to Halmar through one of its villages. Likewise, Fruit and Cabbages will become available, and Pork, Chicken, Bread, Grain, Wool, and Pottery will all become less expensive for as long as Ehlerdah can produce and supply Halmar with its goods.
In this way, the tides of battle can have an indirect impact on the layout of the most profitable trade routes.
Also, some of the most drastically cheap goods occur when villages produce a raw material, but towns do not make their finished products. Rivacheg and Jelkala are the only two towns that usually have villages that produce Raw Silk in their area, but Jelkala produces Velvet from that Raw Silk, and as such, Raw Silk can sometimes be more expensive in Jelkala than even in towns which do not produce Raw Silk at all (since they do not consume any of it, either). Rivacheg, meanwhile, will almost always have the cheapest Raw Silk prices in the game, as they produce quite a bit, but use none of the product.
Because, new to Warband, you can purchase land for your own industries to turn raw materials into finished products for your own profit, those locations where raw materials are produced but their finished products are not become the ideal location to set up the facilities that make those finished products, as your raw materials will be as cheap as they possibly can be, and you face the least competition for the products you sell. Rivacheg, then, is a great place to set up an extremely profitable velvet weavery and dyeworks (which can often produce as much as 1300 denars a week all by itself). Other towns featuring these opportunities are Dhirim, which has plenty of cheap grain, but no breweries of its own, and Curaw, whose villages produce iron but where there is no production of tools.
Some goods are very heavy and thus slow down your party. The weight penalty can be partially offset by keeping horses in your inventory (rule of thumb is to keep one horse per five units of *heavy* inventory, but experiment to find optimal level). The quality of the horses is irrelevant to their ability to act as pack mules; a Lame Sumpter Horse will give you the same bonus to carry weight/speed ratio as a Spirited Courser, so stock up on Lame and Stubborn horses (or better yet, just keep the horses that you take from Steppe Bandits for free) to save money.
As a final note, selling goods to the Book Merchant means that the book merchant will buy goods at the price that those goods trade for in that town. While it is perhaps a bug, he will continue to carry those goods in his own inventory to other towns, where the prices will change, potentially giving you a chance to sell goods to the book merchant and then buy those exact same goods back from him in a different town at a lower price, only to sell them back to him again in another town for even more profit. This also affects the local market supply modifiers, even though the "actual goods" you have traded never hits those markets, and the goods will leave town along with him.
In the actual trade screen, it is possible to make transactions with few Denars changing hands. Because transactions only occur once you click "return," you can first select items you want from the merchant's inventory, and then pick items to sell him back. In the middle of the screen, it shows who will have to pay who how many Denars once "return" is selected. In this way, you can in effect purchase goods with goods. This method is also helpful if the merchant doesn't have enough Denars to buy all of your loot, you can simply trade your loot for something of his that you like.
Food is very important for your party. Each type of food which you have in your inventory gives your party morale, and if you run out of food, you will lose it. Food can be bought at goods merchants in towns, or in villages. Gradually, your party will eat the food, reducing its quantity.
Certain foods are perishable, in classic Mount&Blade, beef goes 'rotten' after two days, first reducing its morale bonus, then making it inedible. In Warband pork, chicken, and grapes are also affected by deterioration.
Your party will eat every 14 hours, with every unit of food quantity feeding 3 troops.
Horses are very important as they can give the advantage on speed (both movement speed and attack speed bonus). Each horse has its own stats so you should choose the one that fits more to your character.
- Horse Type: Name of the horse (horse type).
- Sell Price: The selling value of the horse.
- Armor: Influences the damage your horse takes in battle. The higher this value is, the better.
- Speed: The galloping speed of your horse. All blows delivered at higher speed will cause more damage. Higher speed usually comes at the price of lower armor. Couched lance damage is directly related to this stat.
- Maneuver: The turn rating of your horse.
- Charge: Blunt damage dealt by your horse when it collides with enemy infantry when moving at a sufficient speed. This damage is usually low regardless of how high this value is, though your horse will almost always knock your target over if you are moving at full speed. A horse with a high charge will lose less speed when it hits an enemy and will be able to push its way through more infantry before being forced to stop.
- Hit Points: The amount of damage your horse can take before crippling or dying.
- Requires Riding: The level of Riding skill you need to mount the horse.
Shields block arrows, bolts, javelins, axes and all melee attacks coming from the front, regardless of the attack's direction. Shields can be used with One-handed Weapons, Thrown Weapons and most Polearms. When slung over your back, they can still block ranged attacks coming from the rear; this trait applies only to the player's character, and does not benefit NPCs. Kicks will always break a block regardless of the shield skill of the user or shield that is used.
Different shields have widely differing stats, so you should choose the one that fits your playing style best.
Here's an explanation of what these stats mean:
- Name: This is the name of the shield. The Modifiers of the shield (Thick, Reinforced, etc...) indicate the strength of the shield. Avoid shields (if possible) with prefixes like Cracked, Old, etc.
- Shield Durability: This is the "life" of the shield; it determines how much damage it can take before it breaks. If it runs out, the shield is broken and can no longer be used for the remainder of the battle.
- Sell Price: The selling price for the item.
- Weight: This affects your overall encumbrance. The higher it is, the slower you move. Watch out for your encumbrance if you want to move fast on foot.
- Resistance: This is the damage subtracted from every hit the shield takes. For example, a 0 Resistance shield hit by a blade will take 20 damage, which will drain its Durability; instead, a 10 Resistance shield hit by the same blade will take only 10 damage (20 minus 10). Resistance is also factors against a successful Guard Crush. This parameter can be quite important for a shield. Certain weapons, mainly axes and axe-like weapons, ignore this value when dealing damage. Ranged weapons with sufficient damage and missile speed can penetrate shields that have a low resistance. This damage is always reduced, however a hard enough hitting attack will interupt your block.
- Size: This determines how much of your body is covered by your shield. For example, a 79 Size shield will cover only the upper part of your body, leaving the legs and the head exposed; instead, a 85x143 size shield will cover your whole body, leaving you vulnerable only from the back.
- Speed Rating: This affects how quickly you can move your shield. Higher numbers are obviously better, especially when the character's Shield skill is low or non-existent.
Some shields cannot be used from horseback (it will say so in the stats of the shield, in yellow text). Most of these shields are called "Board shields". They are preferable if the player does not fight on horseback. These shields usually have one of the highest durability ratings and size.
The durability and resistance stats seem to be inversely proportional. Nord shields and Heater shields have higher durability but low resistance, while shields designed to be used mounted are the opposite. Only cumbersome shields like the Huscarl's round shield, Board Shield and Steel Shield are exceptions, but these shields balance their greater protection with reduced speed and increased weight.
Shield and Shield Skill Note that use of shield is heavily affected by shield skill. Higher skill means higher shield resistance, speed and coverage. With high skill spent on it, you can expect your Steel Shield to be used fast as wooden ones and catch projectiles out of coverage as if it were missile magnet.
Deformation If your shield were to be broken, the game may display a message Shield Deformed. If this happens, it means that your shield lost its good trait, or earned a bad trait.
Unlike horses which heal back, shields don't; If your board shield became "Battered", there's no way back to fix it. So manage your shield well, if your shield has taken heavy damage, it is better to take few hits with your body than allow it to break unless your shield is a field pickup weapon or your own health is low as well.
Weapons in the Mount&Blade series can come in a variety of different forms, each with their own styles, benefits, and disadvantages. Most weapons are governed by your Weapon Proficiencies which may be personally increased when you level up, and will also automatically improve through use.
Axes, swords, lances, hands, polearms and, in Mount&Blade: Warband, some thrown weapons, can be used in hand-to-hand combat. Weapons such as axes are more effective against shields and more capable in close quarters, where as a polearm is (often) near useless in close combat. From horseback, the lance dominates when couched, guaranteeing a near-instant kill in most cases. To be an effective hand-to-hand warrior, the player must have a high level of Strength and skills in Power Strike, Shield, Athletics and Weapon Master with high weapon proficiencies in any style of Melee Weapons.
- Name: The name of the weapon. This may include a single Modifier, indicating improved or reduced stats.
- Type of Handling: Weapons can be one-handed, two-handed, or polearms. A shield cannot be used at the same time as a two-handed weapon or with certain polearms. The game also used to have dual wielding, but Armagan removed the feature.
- Sell Price: Without any modifiers, this price is exactly one tenth of the true value of the item, and one twentieth of the purchase value from a store. When looted from battle, items will display their true value. Modifiers will change this value.
- Weight: Affects your overall encumbrance (the speed at which you travel). It also increases the delay after parrying or blocking before another attack can be made with the weapon. The collision of a high weight weapon with a blocking, low weight weapon results in a short stun period where the defender cannot switch out of the block to counter. With the roles reversed, the result is a standard block of the lighter weapon. The weight of the weapon also affects the Crush Through Threshhold of weapons.
- Damage "c" (cutting): Damage dealt swinging the weapon. Some weapons (like scimitars) are swing-only. Cutting weapons often do Bonus Damage against lightly armored targets but significantly lower damage to heavily armored assailants compared to piercing and blunt damage. These weapons benefit the most from the Power Strike skill due to their inherently higher damage.
- Damage "p" (pierce): Damage dealt by thrusting the weapon or firing bows and crossbows. Some weapons (like some spears) are thrust-only. Piercing weapons have higher armor penetration than cutting weapons.
- Damage "b" (blunt): Damage dealt by some weapons with the swing or the thrust. Hammers are an example of a typical blunt weapon. Blunt weapons have highest armor penetration and do lower damage against lightly armored targets. These weapons will always knockout the target, there is no way to kill a target with blunt damage. Additionally, blunt weapons have a chance of knocking a target over depending on the weapon's weight and speed.
- Speed Rating: Affects attack and block speed as well as weapon speed bonus(how quickly the weapon is moving upon impact and how much bonus damage is added as a result).
- Weapon Reach: This determines how far can you strike. Ideally, its value should be higher if you wish to fight on horseback. Shorter weapons are preferable in tight quarters, such as the stairs in many multiplayer siege battles and the final stage of single player siege battles inside of the castle. The full damage of the weapon is also easier to achieve with shorter weapons as maximum damage is inflicted only when the tip of a weapon (the fastest moving point) contacts your target.
- Requirements: Many weapons require a certain level of Strength or skill to use, for melee weapons the only requirement is Strength and Power Throw for Thrown/Polarm and Thrown/One-handed.
One-Handed One-Handed Weapons are relatively light weapons designed for use with a shield. They do less damage compared to two-handed weapons, but they are faster and give you the advantages of having a shield, which include being better able to defend against ranged attacks (such as thrown objects and arrows) and being better able to defend yourself if your horse is killed.
Two-Handed Two-handed Weapons are varieties of hard-hitting weapons like large axes, swords, and hammers. They can deal more damage per-hit than their one-handed counterparts, but you cannot use a shield with them and they generally attack more slowly. These weapons have a greater reach than one-handed weapons on average.
One-Handed/Two-Handed There are only a few weapons that can be wielded as Two-hand/one-handed weapons: the ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ Sword, the Club with Spike and the Morningstar (Warband only). To switch between one and two handed, you have to equip/unequip your shield. Using such a weapon will allow you to choose lesser damage and good defense or good damage and lesser defense. Any one/two handed weapon will deal more damage and swing faster when used with both hands. Note that when on horseback, such weapons are always used with one hand, so there's no advantage to putting away your shield. (However, while holding the shield your "One-Handed Proficiency" will increase, and without the shield, your "Two-Handed Proficiency" will increase).
Polearms Polearms are weapons like staffs, spears, and pikes. Generally polearms have a higher weapon reach than other melee weapons, though they are tricky to be used effectively without a horse because once an enemy closes distance a polearm becomes useless, thus the horse is essential for maintaining distance (there are some exceptions this: notably the shortened spear and quarterstaff which can often be used effectively in close-combat on foot). Some polearms can't be used with a shield due to their large size or due to a need to balance the weapon.
Polearms can be used to strike the enemy using a 'couched' technique. This can be done when on a horse and moving at a fairly high speed. The polearm will automatically go into "couching position" when the speed of the horse is sufficient, and when it hits an enemy, it will inflict a great deal of damage.
Note: Warband players, your couching mechanics are slightly different; if the "Auto Lance" setting is disabled, you must press the 'change position' key (the default is X). It also has a timer and a cool down, so only get into position when you are close to your target or else your lance will return to the travelling position before you strike down your enemy.
Polearm/Two-Handed There are only three Polearm/Two-handed Weapons available. These long axes will all have a lower weapon speed and lose their ability to thrust while used as two-handed weapons along with getting the "Unbalanced" status.
Kicking Kicking is a new feature in Warband, and may inflict minor blunt damage to an enemy. More often than not, this will give you an opening to land a blow on a more block savvy opponent (Shield users). In general, though, it doesn't inflict enough damage to do a serious injury, but it will be useful if you have to take an advantage of the enemy. The kick will throw the nearby enemy away from the player, giving you a chance to attack. Kicking also allows you to kick down an enemy soldier who is standing too close to the edge of a platform or wall, temporarily taking him out of action and sometimes killing the troop with the fall. You do not get experience for this kill as you did not deliver the killing blow. When outnumbered, this technique can reduce the number of enemies for a short while, giving you the chance to kill some enemies before the ones you kicked down managed to climb up again. Timing is of the utmost importance when kicking, as it has a shorter reach than most weapons, the ultra-short Dagger, Knife and Cleaver being among the exceptions, though their incredible speed poses another problem entirely.
Aside from running up to the enemy and bashing him on the head a player can choose to specialize in ranged combat. This revolves around proficiencies such as archery, crossbow and throw. It contains the skills Power Draw and Horse Archery (if desired, allowing mounted ranged combat, a lethal combination). Weapons include the various bows, crossbows, javelins, throwing axes and knives and the humble rock. The only drawback to ranged weapons is that launchers such as bows and crossbows require that ammunition is equipped in one weapon slot, reducing the number of weapons the player can equip. Bows use arrows and so the player must have at least one quiver of arrows and these are not unlimited in battle. After a battle the arrow stocks will be replaced (returning to your inventory in a battle also replaces your ammo). One way to avoid running out is to equip many quivers (up to 3), but of course there are drawbacks to this. The recommended weapon combination for a ranged unit is a bow, two quivers, and a two-handed sword or axe.
Crossbows Crossbows are meant to be used by characters who are not specialized in Archery. They also are far more appropriate for ranged characters who prefer sniping the enemy to hit-and-run archery. Crossbows have a good starting precision even without high proficiencies, which can allow characters greater hit rates than even the most accurate archer and they have only Strength as requirement. However, they are very slow to reload, needing two or three times longer than the bow (improves with proficiency), they have a stronger arc, and only the lighter crossbows can be used on horseback.
Since the damage is not augmented by any attributes, a crossbow user can expect to spend much more money in order to have a higher damage weapon than a bow user would have to spend to deal the same damage per shot. It is advisable not to put points in Crossbows for your character unless you plan to use them regularly.
Crossbows seem to ignore more armor than their bow counterpart, depending on your game version. In an unmodded game, this is due to a higher projectile speed giving the bolt damage higher than the displayed value of the weapon.
Bolts Bolts are used as ammo for crossbows. Each kind of bolt has a damage bonus/penalty and a set amount per stack of bolts.
Note: You can fire a crossbow once without any additional ammunition. You need both the crossbow and the bolts in order to fire again after your one free shot has been used. They take up one equipment slot each.
Bows Bows are best used by characters who are more specialized towards ranged damage. At first glance, a bow would appear to deal less damage than a crossbow. However, the damage a bow can deal is greatly increased by each level of the Power Draw skill- A character with a Power Draw skill of 7 will deal almost twice as much damage as the bow implies. Potentially, a mundane bow can be much more powerful than some more expensive crossbows, in addition to its faster firing rate. Reaching the level necessary to achieve this can take a long time, but attaining a high skill plus knowledge of arrow trajectory makes the bow a devastating weapon if used by a skilled warrior
Each kind of bow needs a certain level of Power Draw in order to be used. The exceptions are the Hunting Bow and the Practice Bow.
Arrows Arrows are the ammo for bows and it is possible to equip more than one quiver of arrows at a time for a larger arrow pool. Each kind of arrows has a damage bonus/penalty and a set number for each stack.
Note: You need both the bow and the arrows in order to fire. They take up one equipment slot each.
Thrown Weapons Thrown Weapons lack the range and accuracy of bows and arrows, but can deal an enormous amount of damage if the user has enough points in the Power Throw skill. They are generally useful to melee-oriented characters or to those who have a spare slot in their equipment screen. Spear-and-axe-type throwing weapons can also be used in melee. Some throwing weapons such as throwing axes have extra damage against shields similar to the melee variant of axe.
In With Fire & Sword, all thrown weapons except stones have been removed and replaced with grenades, items that have a limited range and few shots but can do great damage if aimed properly. A single grenade could, in theory, take down an entire squad if it was well placed. They come in three sizes that range from small to large, each decreasing the amount of uses but increasing the effect, with a small grenade having three shots but a large having only one.
Firearms In the age in which Mount&Blade takes place, firearms don't exist. However, the Flintlock Pistol is hidden in the game's files, and is accessible using third-party modifications.
To access the flintlock pistol in Warband, read my secrets guide called 'The Secrets of Warband'.
Weapon Modifiers Modifiers are labels added on to a weapon that will either enhance or degrade the subject item. Not all weapons have all modifiers. There is no tempered long bow, for example.
Books can be very useful in the Mount&Blade series. Their primary purpose is to give free boosts to your skills or attributes without having to level up. You can purchase them from Book Merchants, found in taverns. Reference books provide the bonus by simply being in your inventory. You do not have to read them, but losing the book will result in losing the bonus and the effect does not stack if you have more books of the same kind.
Other books must be read, but the bonus is permanent. In order to read a book, you must go to the camp menu and "select a book to read". You will then read this book whenever you are resting, such as when you have set up camp, or are staying in a tavern. Once the book is finished, you will get a boost to a certain skill or attribute. These types of books require approximately 143 hours to read.
It might be advisable to read books during the night rather than the day, because of the movement speed penalties.
Bonuses can't pass the 10 level limit of skills, so make sure you only level up to 9 the skills of books you intend to read or keep as reference.
Bonuses of reference books don't stack and you can only read each book type once.
Book Merchant Book Merchants are educated men peddling books for those who wish to better themselves. You can find them in taverns. Books are expensive, but often well worth the benefit.
Book Merchant inventory varies somewhat between taverns, however their space is partially shared as items sold to one book merchant can often be found in another's inventory.
You can make camp at any time when on the map screen. Doing this allows you to do the following things:
- Wait here for some time: You wait at the camp until you click on the screen. If you have selected a book to read, you will read it. Waiting will also recover health for all heroes and the player if they are injured. This will speed up time. You cannot camp for more than 365 consecutive days.
- Recruit some prisoners to join your party: Doing this will get you a few extra men, but will reduce morale (-3 to morale per troop). It is also likely that some, or all, of the recruited prisoners desert at night after being recruited if their morale is too low (the chance of some or all of them leaving is dependant on party morale, note that they will only try to escape the first night after being recruited, after that they are yours forever) but there is also a chance that no one will accept your offer of freedom.
- Select a book to read: Reading will permanently increase your skill depending on the type of book.
- Retire from adventuring: You will stop your adventuring career. Game will show your game score and your corresponding retirement life. However, your game is not erased nor has it truly ended. The game saves and quits before showing you your score, allowing you to come back where you left off at any time.
- Change the name of your kingdom: A function of the player's faction feature of Warband.
You can take prisoners at the end of most battles or sieges. Some fights do not allow the option, such as freeing a village from bandits. You can only capture the enemies who have been knocked unconscious through the use of blunt weapons (horse charging is also blunt damage). Once you have taken prisoners, you may recruit them to your party, ransom them to ransom brokers (found in taverns in towns), or garrison them in a town or city. Money from ransoms can vary, depending how big the army was if you captured a noble, or how good it is if it's a soldier (in classic Mount&Blade, all soldiers are worth 50 denars).
Prisoners can be a great source of money if you have high prisoner management or a town to store them in. If you have a town, you can put all your prisoners in it until a ransom broker appears in your tavern. At this point, you can sell all your prisoners. If you have no town but have higher prisoner management, you can travel around capturing prisoners and selling them as you find ransom brokers.
Your prisoner management skill governs how many prisoners you can take at a time: 5 for every point. The skill's base attribute is charisma.
Having prisoners slows down your Party Speed across the map. If you need a quick boost, such as to evade an enemy, releasing all of your prisoners can give you a nice increase at the cost of not being able to ransom them.
Noble Prisoners You may occasionally take lords or kings prisoner if they are knocked unconscious (and therefore unable to escape from battle), or if they fail to escape from battle (70% chance to escape after their army is defeated). Every 24 hours, there is a 5% chance that the kingdom from which they come will offer denars (or Thalers) to get the prisoner released; refusing this will result in loss of honor, but will prevent them from raising a new army for as long as they are held captive. You can still capture a lord without using the prisoner management skill. If your prisoner capacity is reached, the lord will still be captured, possibly overfilling your max capacity (e.g. 6/5).
Prisoner lords will attempt to escape captivity every 48 hours, their chance of success is dependant on where you are holding them: 50% from within your party, 30% from a town without a prison tower, and 5% from a town with a prison tower.
If you keep the captive nobles as your prisoners while you travel, you will notice that they gain the + symbol next to their name, like they have leveled up. However, there is no way to upgrade their skills.
Rescuing Lords You can rescue captured lords of a neutral or friendly kingdom from your enemies in two ways. The first is to simply defeat the lord that took them prisoner in battle so long as he has not put them into a dungeon yet, this will automatically free the captured lord and you will gain a small bonus in relation with them. In Warband, a second option is to sneak into a castle or town where a lord is being held captive, knocking out the prison guard (this can be very difficult in towns where you may find yourself surrounded by up to 4 high-tier troops, in a confined space, wielding only robes and a quarterstaff) then entering the prison and telling the captured lord that you're there to rescue him. This may become easier by bribing a village belonging to that town/castle to start a fire. The fire will start in one hour or at midnight by your choice, and most of the guards will be gone while fighting off the guards with the prisoner.
It is also possible to rescue lords from a castle or town if they are held by a faction that is neutral to you. This is more attractive than attempting to sneak past the guards as it allows you to retain your normal adventuring equipment, which makes fighting a half dozen guard units quite a bit easier. It raises your relationship by 7 with the rescued lord as well as increasing your relation by 2 points with his home faction. There is also honor associated with ending their incarceration. There are no negative effects with the ruling lord or faction. In total, this is one of the most effective ways to increase honor and relations as an unfactioned lord, and goes a long way towards building a future kingdom. Since troops are completely unnecessary it is best to just use a bare bones party of heroes and free all the lords possible.
Once you have gotten the lord out of prison (it is a good idea to tell him to fight together with you, then order him to hold his ground in a corner out of sight) you have to defeat all the troops in the town or castle, without letting the lord get knocked unconscious; this can be very tricky when there are a lot of archers around. If a lord is knocked unconscious you will have failed the rescue, and the game will tell you that he had to be left behind.
You cannot attempt a prison break in the same castle/town more than once every day, as the guards will instantly recognize you.
Captive Ladies After capturing a castle or town, you may find ladies who failed to escape. You can talk to them and let them go free (+1 relationship), or hold them prisoner for ransom (loss of relationship and honor, profit denars if deal is offered).
Recruting Prisoners You may attempt to recruit prisoners into your party through the Camp menu once every 24 hours. This may allow you to acquire a specific unit without having to train them yourself, or may give you a quick boost to your troop numbers. However, doing so comes at a cost to Morale of -3 for every prisoner that accepts your offer. There is also a high chance that freshly recruited prisoners will desert your party within the following day, although this can easily be prevented by putting them into a garrison.
The chance of prisoners accepting the deal is based on your Persuasion skill. 0 Persuasion will have a success rate of 40%, while 10 Persuasion will double that rate to 80%.
When recruiting prisoners, the choice to join your party is not made by individual units, but rather a troop type. In other words, if you have 3 Nord Recruits as prisoners, you will either get 0 or 3 of them.
Exploit: If you really want to recruit prisoners and have enabled quitting without saving, save before trying to recruit prisoners. The chance of prisoners joining you is completely random, so loading and trying again could make prisoner management pretty useful, considering you can recruit prisoners once a day.
Heroes are unique troops with individual names, stories, skills, attributes and equipment (all of which can be chosen by you). Like the player character, heroes never die and are only knocked unconscious.
You can never station them in garrisons.
If you are taken prisoner, Heroes may be forced to leave your party. Every Hero likes one other Hero and hates two others (they will usually tell you this after a battle).
Often, they will talk to you when you are doing something which they do not like, such as failing quests or running low on food. They will also talk to you when you reach a certain point on the map, and tell you a bit about their history and how that particular location relates to it.
If you part ways with a Hero, you can talk to a traveller in a tavern and he will tell you his or her location, for 30 denars. If the Hero you are looking for isn’t available, they probably have not yet respawned which may take a week or more to happen - be patient. Respawn can also be related to your Renown, so you may need to wait until it increases by a certain amount before they respawn.
Recruitment Companions are found in taverns throughout Calradia. Their locations are random and they will change from time to time so it is important to check back at taverns regularly.
Many of them require money before they join your party, but some will join for free.
Nobles In Mount&Blade: Warband, your companions can be made into Lords and given towns, villages or castles. However, unless they are noble other lords will not accept them and hate you because of that. If a hero is made into a lord and defects from your faction, and said faction is then defeated, they can again be found in taverns and recruited to your party, but will retain their own coat of arms and their title.
Dislike <Hero> as Emissary Sending heroes out to convince other lords that you should be the rightful ruler of Calradia can have a negative impact on morale for other heroes.
Marriage There is only one way to marry a hero, but you must be a female character to do so. Here is how you do it. Conquer a Castle or Town for yourself and start your own Kingdom. Conquer another one and give it to a MALE Hero (Making them your vassal). Get them to like you at nearly 100 % and propose that you get married. If they say yes in about a month you will be married to a hero.
The Raiding Party If you get sick of playing the nice-to-peasants honorable knight, you probably want to have "heroes" that don't object to the frequent razing of villages in your party. It's also highly profitable, so the incentive for being evil is there.
Heroes - Information
Gets along with Ymira
Does not get along with Marnid and Nizar
Dislikes failing quests and having Baheshtur as emissary
Costs 300 denars in wage
Skills are Power Strike, Weapon Master and Riding
Personality is Good Natured or Upstanding
Gets along with Lezalit
Does not get along with Jeremus and Klethi
Dislikes hunger, failing quests, taking heavy casualties and having Katrin as emissary
Costs 300 denars in wage
Skills are Engineer, Trade and Tactics
Personality is Calculating
Gets along with Rolf
Doesn't get along with Katrin and Marnid
Dislikes hunger, not being paid, retreating from battle, taking heavy castualties and having Ymira as emissary
Costs 400 denars in wage
Skills are Power Draw, Weapon Master and Horse Archery
Personality is Martial
Gets along with Marnid
Doesn't get along with Deshavi and Klethi
Dislikes heavy losses and having Alayen as emissary
Costs 300 denars in wage
Skills are Tracking, Pathfinding and Spotting
Gets along with Katrin
Doesn't get along with Lezalit and Rolf
Dislikes robbing villages, taking heavy casualties and having Nizar as emissary
Costs 200 denars in wage
Skills are Iron Flesh, Weapon Master and Power Strike
Personality is Good Natured or Upstanding
Gets along with Klethi
Doesn't get along with Borcha and Rolf
Dislikes hunger, taking heavy casualties and having Bunduk as emissary
Is free in wage
Skills are Pathfinding, Spotting and Tracking
Personality is Pitless
Gets along with Jeremus
Doesn't get along with Nizar and Katrin
Dislikes robbing villages, failing quests and having Rolf as emissary
Is free in wage
Skills are Athletics
Personality is Good Natured or Upstanding
Gets along with Firentis
Doesn't get along with Artimenner and Matheld
Dislikes robbing villages, returning serfs and having Klethi as emissary
Is free in wage
Skills are Wound Treatment, Trade, First Aid and Surgery
Personality is Calculating
Gets along with Bunduk
Doesn't get along with Firentis and Baheshtur
Dislikes hunger, not being paid and having Lezalit as emissary
Costs 100 denars in wage
Skills are Iron Flesh and Trade
Personality is Martial
Gets along with Deshavi
Doesn't get along with Borcha and Artimenner
Dislikes having Marnid as emissary
Costs 200 denars in wage
Skills are Power Throw, Pathfinding and Spotting
Personality is Debauched
Gets along with Artimenner
Doesn't get along with Ymira and Bunduk
Dislikes having Borcha as emissary
Costs 400 denars in wage
Skills are Power Strike, Weapon Master and Trainer
Personality is Martial
Gets along with Borcha
Doesn't get along with Alayen and Baheshtur
Dislikes robbing villages, robbing caravans, returning serfs and having Matheld as emissary
Is free in wage
Skills are Trade
Personality is Good Natured or Upstanding
Gets along with Nizar
Doesn't get along with Ymira and Jeremus
Dislikes retreating from battle and having Firentis as emissary
Costs 500 denars in wage
Skills are Weapon Master and Athletics
Personality is Martial
Gets along with Matheld
Doesn't get along with Firentis and Alayen
Dislikes retreating from battle and having Jeremus as emissary
Costs 300 denars in wage
Skills are Iron Flesh, Power Strike, Weapon Master and Athletics
Gets along with Baheshtur
Doesn't get along with Deshavi and Bunduk
Dislikes retreating from battle and having Artimenner as emissary
Costs 300 denars in wage
Skills are Athletics and Tactics
Personality is Martial
Gets along with Alayen
Doesn't get along with Matheld and Lezalit
Dislikes robbing villages, leaving troops to cover retreat, retreating from battle, returning serfs and having Deshavi as emissary
Is free in wage
Personality is Good Natured
For each of the factions, there is a claimant who believes that he or she has been wronged and should rightfully be in charge. They can be found randomly throughout the map, trying to raise support for their cause. The claimants will never be found within the borders of the faction for which they are the claimant, and are only found in the keeps of other kingdoms. Talking to a traveller and paying 30 denars will give you the location of any claimant.
Siding with a Claimant Once you find a claimant, they will tell you their side of the story and will ask you to take up their cause. If you have less than 200 renown they will tell you that you need to gain more (they never tell you the amount of renown needed). With over 200 renown, the claimant will allow you to swear an oath of vassalage and your faction changes to the rebel faction. If you were starting your own kingdom, you give up your kingdom and become a vassal of the claimant. If you belonged to the faction that the claimant is trying to overthrow, the fiefs you currently own convert to the rebel faction of your claimant (temporarily under your control).
The Other Side of the Coin Talking to the current leaders of each faction, you can ask for their side of the story. Both the Claimant and the current leader have good reason for supporting their right to rule. It is never stated in-game who should be the rightful ruler of each faction - it is up to the player to decide.
Victory with a Claimant Once you eliminate the original faction, your rebel faction becomes the "original" faction and you become the marshal permanently of the new king or queen (you can step down, but it can never be taken from you). In Warband, you also lose all the abilities associated with being a ruler such as assigning fiefs or sending emissaries.
For this reason, beware of turning companions into lords during a claimant quest as they do not remain 'yours' when the original faction is defeated. Rather, they become lords of the new "original" faction led by the new monarch. If you'd like to have a companion as a prisoner, it may be easier to give them over during a claimant quest than force them to rebel during your own bid for kingship.
The camps act as the main base for bandit gangs. When reaching a bandit camp, you have the option of leaving it be or attacking it. Due to the narrow entrances to the camps, cavalry cannot be used in the battle. If the base is destroyed, the bandits in the area disappear and you are presented with the loot screen with their 'ill-gotten goods' (usually bandit arms and armour, with a few villagers' supplies). However, if you fail, the bandits leave the camp and build another camp somewhere else (and continue to plague anyone who passes by).
These camps are often the target of quests for a lord who owns a nearby town. If you fail to eliminate the camp while taking on such a quest, you have to explain this to the lord. The lord will not lose any relation with you and if you ask for a task immediately afterwards, he will give you another chance at destroying the bandits.
The bandit camps are usually good targets of opportunity for new players since they are usually filled with items that new players can use or just sell for money. Attacking the camps with a shield and one-handed weapon is recommended since most bandits use ranged weapons.
The camps consist of some caves, longboats, a tent, or a shack. These are the spawning points of the bandits there.
Bandits will stand ground in front of cave or uphill before you come close or attack. If some of them are neutralized, other bandits will respawn. As their men start to run out, Looters rather than bandits will sally out desperately.
Locating Locating a bandit camp can be a hard job as camp locations are pretty random. It is possible to ask caravans (and perhaps other passersby) for help locating the bandits. Another option is to find a group that is currently "Travelling", as this means they are returning home to resupply, just follow them at a safe distance and allow them to lead the way.
Here are some tips for finding each kind of bandit camp:
- Sea Raider landings Sea raiders land on the northern coastline of Calradia, along the shore between Rivacheg and Wercheg.
- Forest Bandits' Camp These are found in forests, usually ones teeming with bandits. They can be hard to spot amongst the dense woodlands. Commonly found north of Uxkhal and the forests surrounding Ibiran.
- Steppe Bandits' hideout These are found around in and around the steppe areas of Calradia. Commonly found around Khergit areas, such as Ichamur and Narra.
- Tundra Bandits' hideout Is usually found in snowy areas of the map, such as aroun Khudan or Rivacheg. Tundra bandits have fairly decent weapons and armour, so may be difficult early-game.
- Desert Bandits' hideout These are found in the arid, desert parts of the map which are initially controlled by the Sarranid Sultanate. These hideouts contain tents with an oasis in the centre.
- Mountain Bandits' hideout Usually located in Rhodok territory and close to mountains such as around Veluca.
It is always good to visit the respective lord first, if you discover a bandit camp, to maximize experience and denar gain. The lords may change as the game proceeds, as the town may be conquered and given to another faction and lord.
Alternate Strategy Instead of actually destroying a bandit camp, it can be quite useful as a source of non-faction fights to train your units with. Bandits will regularly spawn in the areas of their camps, sometimes in groups of 50+, that you can chase down and kill for their spoils and exp without having to get negative faction with another noble every time you want to fight. Once you locate a bandit camp just clear the area of bandits on the map but don't go in and clear the camp, and the next time you're feeling like bandits you'll know exactly where to look. Bandit camps do respawn after you destroy them, although not in the exact same place. Just find a place with lots of bandits clumped up, and you know its there somewhere. You can also get the bandit camp quests from lords repeatedly from lords who own the town closest to camp.
For this option it's recommended you chose a forest bandit (easiest), mountain bandit (medium) or sea raider base (hardest). This is because desert and steppe bandits are on horseback and it's another dimension to worry about if what you're after is efficient combat and loot.
It is very easy to attack any sized bandit group if you are slow. You only have to have a lot of food so you can stay still.
1. Get a lot of food
2. Find a bandit camp
3. Click the bandit camp and go to it. When given the option to attack, press leave.
4. Go to camp and press "wait" (in Warband, Ctrl+Spacebar can make time go faster than normal. Spacebar just goes normal time.)
5. Wait until a bandit group attacks you; they will eventually return to their camp, sometime at night. If you have a large enough party, you can wait near their camp and, before too long, most of the bandits will have left their camp and will pace back and forth (towards the camp, away from the camp, towards the camp, etc) and you will have easy pickings from a large number of them without ever attacking the camp.
The new multiplayer modes in Mount & Blade: Warband have ramped up the medieval action by a few notches. Now you can hack, slice, maim and stab up to 64 friends and strangers across 12 specially designed multiplayer maps in your choice of 7 multiplayer modes. In this M&B: Warband Multiplayer Guide we’ll run through the options and offer up a few hints and tips to get you started on the path to glory.
Character and Server Setup
It seems a bit of a shame that you can’t just port your single player campaign character into the multiplayer side of the game. Sadly you have to start from scratch by choosing a name and faction. Next up is the same physical character creation tool you used in single player and finally you get to choose your banner.
With the character created you are faced with two choices:
Host a Game – Developer TaleWorlds has provided you with all the options you could want in terms of setting up a server. You can make it private with a password, you can set the number of players, number of bots, decide on the factions, turn off friendly fire for melee or ranged separately, decide on the spectator camera, block mechanic, speed, time limit, targets for victory, equipment gold at start and earned through combat, whether to allow various types of polls and how they work, whether to allow private banners, respawn periods (if applicable), and finally whether to force minimum armor. If you are the host you can also access this screen in game by hitting ESC and choosing the Administrator Panel.
Join a Game – If you choose to join an existing server you’ll be presented with a list and you can choose the mode you want to play and double click to join one. If you hover your mouse over an option you’ll see a full range of details about the rules on that server. Obviously the lower the ping, the better for you.
Faction, Loadout & In-Game Controls
Once you actually join a game you’ll select a faction and a soldier type. You’ll then be provided with some gold to buy your gear. The default amount is 1,000 and you can kit yourself out with some weaponry and armour. The choices available to you are class based and will depend on the type of soldier you choose to be. They’re basically split into cavalry, infantry and archer.
Once you are in game you can hit TAB to bring up the scoreboard and see how you’re performing. You can also hit ESC to bring up your options. This is handy if you’re not clear on the game rules, want to change faction or feel like reassigning controls. Just remember the game is not paused and you can and will be chopped up while you are in this menu!
There are 7 multiplayer game modes in Mount & Blade: Warband and we’ll take a look at each one in turn. It is also worth mentioning before we start that some servers enforce their own rules beyond the basic modes. For example many players like to duel in Deathmatch and they have a system of chivalric rules which involves greeting a player before you try to stab them in the face. If a player is engaged in a fight and you run up and stab them in the back you’re probably going to get kicked. Now let’s take a look at the Warband multiplayer modes in more detail.
It is a great shame that the objective based multiplayer modes in M&B: Warband are so unpopular but the reason is not difficult to fathom. The maps are not balanced and it makes modes like Siege a bit of a nightmare. The basic idea is to take it in turns to Attack and then Defend a castle. The attacking force has a time limit to seize the castle and in general it is a little too easy for the defenders. It is tactically quite a fun mode. The ability to either raise ladders or rush the gate to lower the enemy flag is also great.
In this mode you generally have a more open battlefield and the objective is to capture and hold a number of points marked by flags that you must raise. If you manage to capture them all, then the enemy can’t spawn in and you’ve won the round. Each team starts with points and when they hit zero they’ve lost. The scattered capture points don’t make for the best gameplay and this is probably my least favourite mode.
Capture the Flag
As you’d expect this is a team based mode where the objective is to capture your opponent’s flag. The teams have a base with a flag each and you have to capture the enemy flag and carry it back to your base to score. The problem with this is balancing again and often one of the positions is easier to defend than the other which gives one team an advantage. If you get killed while carrying the flag the enemy only has to touch it and it will return to their base. For obvious reasons you can’t capture the flag while on horseback.
Fight & Destroy
This is an odd multiplayer mode where one team defends a couple of pieces of siege equipment (catapult and trebuchet) and the other team tries to smash them up. It takes ages to smash them up by hacking away and it isn’t a great deal of fun. You get a point for smashing something up and the defenders get a point for anything that survives. You can also win by just killing all the opponents because there is no respawning in this mode.
This is my favourite mode and it quite simply pitches two opposing forces against each other in a bloody battle to the death. What makes it more fun and more exciting than the other modes is the fact that you don’t respawn. If you are felled during battle then you are relegated to spectator. This is like a medieval version of Counter Strike and with good players it is action packed and addictive. The game can only be won by exterminating the enemy force completely.
If you don’t like to sit out any of the action then you might prefer this mode to Battle. It is a fight between two opposing forces but this time if you die you will respawn (the respawn time is a server setting). The winning team is the one with the most points (kills) when the time runs out or the first team to reach a point target.
The simplest of all the multiplayer modes is a chaotic free for all in which you must kill everyone else. If the map is too open or you spawn out in the field then you’ll be at the mercy of cavalry and archer units. This mode is too messy to be much fun and perhaps partly for that reason many servers have introduced their own rules about duelling. This reduces Deathmatch to a series of one on one duels where you introduce yourself by doing an overhead block and if the opponent accepts the challenge you fight to the death. There’s always a risk you’ll get stabbed in the back though and even though players will get kicked for breaking rules it can’t really be stopped from happening in the first place.
Rise to the Throne Part 1
In the Beginning You’ll kick off the game as a lone adventurer and the start you get in Calradia will depend on what options you decided to select when Creating your Mount & Blade Character. In Warband you are given a mission to help you get started. This is a good gentle introduction and for the early part of the game you should take on missions for city guilds and lords to build up some cash and experience. You should also attack small groups of bandits. Don't take on deserters though, because they tend to be very well equipped, and at the start of the game you won't be. You can also build up some skills and make a little cash by fighting in the arenas in the cities.
As you get tougher and start to make some money you can upgrade your gear. As well as upgrading your own armour and weapons make sure you remember to kit out your companions.
Train Up and Recruit Your main focus should be to build up your character and your party. You’ll want to recruit companions from the taverns and hire raw recruits at villages. Training up raw recruits is much cheaper than hiring the finished article in a tavern so avoid the groups of mercenaries. The individual companion characters, on the other hand, are an essential part of your force so seek them out. If you hire all of them you’ll find that they argue so try to select a balanced group and eject troublemakers.
Paying Homage You don’t strictly need to become a vassal but it would be very tough to go straight from adventurer to King. Decide which of the factions you’d like to be a part of and concentrate on doing missions for them (particularly for the King of your chosen faction). You need to Build up your Renown and eventually as it grows the factions will attempt to sign you up. Alternatively you can build your renown up and then go direct to the King and ask to join his faction.
Making Gold Money makes the world go round and you need a decent bankroll to succeed in Calradia. If you build up debts it will have a negative effect on your standing and your party morale will dip. You will make some money from any possessions you have. The King of your chosen faction will generally grant you a small village as an introduction and if you take castles and cities thereafter he may award you more lands. The tax income is now delivered directly to you but you’ll need to build mills and protect your possessions in order to make them profitable.
The most lucrative way to spend your time is to travel around taking part in tournaments. We’ll discuss the other benefits later but if you make sure to bet on yourself, the maximum 100 for each round, then you’ll come away with a tidy sum (usually just under 4,000) assuming you win.
You can also take on various missions to make cash and of course you’ll get loot (which can be sold) every time you defeat an enemy force.
Making Friends You need to build up your honor rating and keep your controversy low to make friends. It will come in very handy later if you have some lords onside. It is possible to persuade lords to join your faction and support you as king. You’ll need to build strong friendships if you want to do this. You’ll also want to avoid war with everyone when you do declare your new faction, so being friendly with at least one faction is a very good idea.
You’ll increase your chances of success by planning ahead carefully. Think about what territory you might want to claim when you first strike out. Try to choose somewhere next to the faction you are friendly with so that you don’t get attacked from all sides. This may also have the side benefit of giving you some protection, especially if they are engaged in a war with your enemy.
It will also be easier to take border castles because they will probably have been fought over before. This means they are the most likely to be poorly defended. Scope out the area and scout thoroughly before you actually attack.
Declaring Independence The act of setting up your faction in Mount and Blade: Warband is actually very simple. All you need to do is attack and take a castle or city without being tied to a faction. Renounce your oath to the faction you’re with, bear in mind that you will lose your lands. Now attack a new city or castle and when you take it you’ll get the chance to set up your new faction. Before you can siege a castle or town, you have to have a negative relation with the faction you're wanting to capture a castle or town of.f You can choose a name and a banner.
The hard part is holding on to your new found empire. You can drastically improve your chances in this regard by paying attention to a rating that we’ll discuss in the next part of this guide – Right to Rule.
Rise to the Throne Part 2
Create a Faction We have established the basic process of how to create your own faction. In simple terms you simply have to seize a town or city as an independent. The problem is keeping your empire and avoiding a crushing attack from the other factions. Obviously you have to be levelled up, kitted out and in command of a large, well trained army. Making friends will also help because there is a greater chance that other lords will stay neutral when you rebel. Now we’ll have a look at recruiting lords, marrying ladies and increasing your Right to Rule.
Recruiting Lords You can also improve your chances of victory by recruiting lords to your cause. This will make your faction more powerful but it will also decrease your chances of grabbing land for yourself. If you persuade a lord to defect or you make a companion into a vassal you will need to grant them lands of their own to keep them happy. If you make a companion into a vassal make sure they are levelled up with good armour and weaponry first because you won’t be able to change it afterwards.
You’ll need to talk to them in private if you want to recruit them. Make sure that you have a decent relationship before you broach the subject so as to avoid trouble. You can also question the competency of the current king and suggest you would do a better job. It is a smart idea to survey the scene before making any moves and make sure you approach the disaffected lords.
You can find out the situation by observing messages, talking to lords and ladies and sending your companions to gather intelligence. It is important you recruit lords and promote companions with similar ideas or you’ll end up with a hopeless kingdom.
Marriage Another new option in Mount & Blade: Warband is to woo a lady with poetry and marry her. You can do it in secret or you can get her father’s permission (sometimes brother). It takes several visits to worm your way into a bedchamber and it’s not a good idea to rush. You can learn poems in taverns and there seems to be a limit of five in total.
The benefit of marriage is that it gives you the ability to hold feasts and increase your standing. It also brings you closer to the family, provided the marriage was sanctioned. Be warned though, if you elope and marry without the permission of the male relative then you’ll be making an enemy for life.
In order to meet eligible ladies you should win tournaments and then visit the feast and dedicate the tournament win to the lady you fancy. Once you declare an interest you’ll get summons occasionally or you can go to the city where the lady resides and you’ll see Attempt to visit a lady as a new menu option. When the relationship gets advanced enough and you’ve tried out all your poems on her you can pop the question.
Right to Rule An important new concept in Mount & Blade: Warband is Right to Rule. You can check your Right to Rule rating in your Character Report. When you think you are ready to create your own faction you should start to build up this rating by talking to your companions and telling them you want to be king. You’ll get an option to send them out on missions. Each of your companions will have a different idea about how to improve your chances of becoming king. You’ll only be able to send one or two at a time and they’ll be away from your party for a few days while they complete the mission. Each time they return your Right to Rule will increase by 3.
If your Right to Rule rating is too low and you try to start your own faction you can expect serious opposition from all factions because they’ll regard you as a rebel bandit. To be taken seriously you have to have a good rating in terms of renown, honor and Right to Rule (just over 50 worked for me).
Making Peace You can’t afford to be at war with everyone so you’ll want to make peace with some factions. If you are on friendly terms and you have a good standing in Calradia then you should be able to get peace. You can also use your companions as diplomats for your cause and send them to visit factions in an attempt to get treaties. You can do this by talking to your minister and asking him to dispatch an emissary. You want to send someone in your party with good persuasion skills to increase your chances of success.
Don't be Controversial There are various things that will make your standing suffer and so you must avoid them if you want to be taken seriously as a king. If you have a high Controversy rating you run the risk of incurring the wrath of everyone. You can check your Controversy by selecting Notes then Characters.
- Always make sure you take care of your lands. If you don’t protect them and develop them your reputation will suffer.
- Be careful who you make into a vassal. Some lords will get upset and outraged if you grant status to a commoner. You can afford to promote companions like Alayen because they are of noble blood.
- Get permission for your love affairs. If you sneak around behind the backs of male relatives or worse elope with a lady then you’ll anger people.
Build a Solid Foundation The gold doesn’t always flow very easily and since you’ll be engaged in major warfare when you begin a new faction you’ll want a solid financial base behind you. It is ideal if the first target you take is rich. It is also a good idea to target the weakest faction and scoop up their lands as quickly as possible.
Remember that in order to attack a faction you need to have a negative relationship with them.
If you plan well you should be ruling an empire in no time. If you have any suggestions for good tactics to use then please post a comment.
Nord Recruit Recruits are what you have to start with if you want to get the best Nord units. Nord Recruits are armed with only a hatchet and are not well armored either. They will die fast by something like a cavalry charge. The good news is they are a lot of Recruits to be had.
Nord Huntsman The only real difference between a Recruit and a Huntsman is the addition of a bow. They will die just as easily as a Recruit so be sure to keep them back. Make sure to put choose this path if you want bowmen.
Nord Footman Nord Footmen are slightly better armored than their predecessors and have spears and shields. This will be very nice on the field fighting mounted enemies. Choose this route for close combat units.
Nord Archer The upgrade to Nord Archer is a big step up from his predecessors. Armed in leather armor, and wielding a substantial axe.
Nord Trained Footman Here we go. This guy has some chainmail, so you should be a whole lot less worried about him dying. At this point the Nord starts getting some good units.
Nord Veteran Archer The final Nord Archer. These guys are not bad, but there are other archers or crossbowmen out there that are more heavily armored. Besides, you choose Nords for the Huscarl, didn't you? Yes, you did.
Nord Warrior Another upgrade from the Trained Footman. Better armor and weapons, also with the addition of a thrown weapon.
Nord Veteran Another upgrade from the Warrior. Better everything.
Nord Huscarl The final unit in the melee branch for the Nords, also the best hand-to-hand combat unit. These guys are a terror on castle defenses or assaults, and can be good or bad for you depending on which side you are on.
*The Nords are the best at defending or assaulting castles where everyone is forced to fight on foot. I don't see much reason to take these guys out on the field unless their fighting style really appeals to you. My optimal castle defense would be made up of about primarily Huscarls, with a couple of your favorite archers.
Swadian Recruits The Swadian starting unit is poorly armored and armed. They really have nothing special about them, so try to upgrade them as soon as possible.
Swadian Militia The only option to advance, the Militia units have better equipment, plus are able to do ranged attacks, making them rather versatile.
Swadian Footman Choose this option for melee units. Footmen give up the crossbow for better armor and a better melee weapon. When this unit advances you will have a second time to choose a path between horse or infantry units.
Swadian Skirmisher Choose this option for ranged units. I don't usually go this path because Swadian crossbowmen are not as good as Rhodock Crossbowmen.
Swadian Infantry Choose this option for more foot based melee combat. These guys are good for defending a castle or assaulting one, but not as good as the specialized Nordic units.
Swadian Man at Arms Choose this option if you want my favorite unit, the Swadian Knight.
Swadian Crossbowman An upgrade from the Skirmisher, but not by much.
Swadian Sergeant While not the best infantry in the game, you still can't go wrong with these guys.
Swadian Knights My favorite unit, and the best heavy cavalry in the game. These guys destroy on the field, and actually work quite well during castle assaults and defenses. That does not mean that these guys are the best units in the game, they do come at a hefty price, so don't get a large amount of them until you have some sort of steady income.
Swadian Sharpshooter There is nothing wrong with the Sharpshooter, other than the Rhodock Sharpshooter is superior, and why waste a unit that could potentially be a Knight?
*My favorite troops to use on the field are Swadian Knights. While not the fastest cavalry, they are certainly the most heavily armored. They are however rather expensive to maintain, so make sure you have deep pockets before investing. I would be happy with an entire army of Swadian Knights.
Rhodok Tribesman The starting Rhodock unit. Close combat infantry with a tower shield. Even this early the Rhodock unit starts off with a spear. Other than that they have the basic first unit clothes, so no armor.
Rhodok Spearman An upgrade from the Tribesman. Make sure to choose this path if you want spearmen.
Rhodok Crossbowman Carrying a towershield on their backs, Rhodock Crossbowman are able to block some of the arrow and bolt fire from enemy archers and crossbowmen, making them slightly more effective than other basic ranged units in the game. They are still vulnerable against other attacks while they have their crossbows out, but they carry a sword and can use their large shield to become more effective than you would think.
Rhodok Trained Spearman Like the name implies, the Trained Spearman is has more skill, but that's about it. The armor is hardly improved, but still slightly better than what it was.
Rhodok Veteran Spearman At this point, the unit gets much nicer equipment. You can't go wrong with these guys on the field.
Rhodok Sharpshooter The best ranged unit the Rhodocks have to offer. And because of the heavy armor, and towershields, they are my favorite foot ranged unit. I like to use them alongside Nord Huscarls for castle defense.
Rhodok Sergeant The best unit the Rhodocks have, and the main reason for upgrading Rhodock troops in the first place. These guys destroy cavalry and are the best spearmen in the game.
*I would use the Rhodock spearmen if I was fighting a largely horsed force, such as the Khergit Khanate, otherwise I would use their Sharpshooters for castle defense.
Vaegir Recruit Your basic, crappy beginning unit.
Vaegir Footman Most Footman have spears, so they are pretty useful against cavalry. Otherwise, again nothing special.
Vaegir Veteran Be sure to choose this path for melee units. This unit IS special because he is riding on a horse, useful for a unit this early it's advancement.
Vaegir Skirmisher Most Skirmishers carry throwing weapons, which is a pain. Still, if you want Vaegir archers, you must take this path.
Vaegir Infantry I believe this is a downgrade from the Vetren because you lose the horse, but if you need Vaegir infantry, choose this one.
Vaegir Horseman An upgrade from the Veteran. Better abilities and equipment.
Vaegir Archer A visible improvement from the Skirmisher because Archer's wield bows instead of a thrown weapon.
Vaegir Guard The best Vaegir foot melee unit. Still not near as good as the Nord Huscarls, but they suffice. I would upgrade my Vaegir units to be Knights.
Vaegir Knight As far as I can tell, they are the same as Swadian Knights. I just personally like the Swadian Knights more because they look more put together and generally menacing. Vaegir Knights are still really good units and probably the best
Vaegir Marksman The Marksmen are nice because they carry a pole axe. Pole axes are good against cavalry which devastate archers. Despite this, I prefer the Rhodock Sharpshooters for foot archers or Khergit Vetern Horse Archer.
Khergit Tribesman The Tribesmen are probably the worst outfitted beginning unit in the game. Some carry a club for peats sake! Others do have spears or bows though. However, some of them are on horse, and the ones that are one a horse have a distinct advantage over any of the other beginning units.
Khergit Skirmisher The only option to advance from the Tribesman. Like the Tribesman, the Skirmisher has relatively random equipment, some carry spears and bows, others bow, shield and close combat weapon, others have throwing weapons, but their skills with the weapons has improved as well as the quality. Also like the Tribesman, they are on horses, giving them a distinct advantage against similarly leveled units of other factions, however the horse has improved.
Khergit Horseman The next only option for troop advance, the Horseman is a direct upgrade from the Skirmisher. Same seemingly random equipment, but everything is made better.
Khergit Lancer The heaviest armored Khergit unit is also the last and only unit in the melee tree. Astride one of the fastest horses in the game, the Lancer can close the gap between enemy units quickly. Unlike other high end cavalry, the Lancer's horse is poorly armored, making it a weak spot. There are better melee cavalry choices like the already discussed Swadian Knight or Veagir Knight.
Khergit Horse Archer An archer dedicated to fighting on horse back, be sure to choose this path if you want some of the most effective archers in the game. The Horse Archer trades some of the diversity one would find when upgrading to a lancer to specialize in archery. What makes Horse Archers better than any other archer, at least in my opinion is they are able to run away from pursuers, thus living longer and getting off more shots.
Khergit Veteran Horse Archer A standard improvement from the Horse Archer.
*While I dont usually have archers on the field because I enjoy running up and smashing the enemy, I would go for the Khergit Veteran Horse Archer over all of the others. In my opinion they are the best unit the Khergit Khanate has to offer.
Sarranid Recruit The very basic and first unit.
Sarranid Footman Comes with a stick, shield and some basic Sarranid armor.
Sarranid Veteran Footman One of the first footmen troops. Has almost the same things as the Sarranid Footman, but better.
Sarranid Skirmisher The first ranged Sarranid troop. Is an upgrade of the Sarranid Footman, but ranged. Throws javelins.
Sarranid Infantry One of the upgrades of the Sarranid Veteran Footman. Good armor, spear, shield and more.
Sarranid Horseman The other upgrade of the Sarranid Veteran Footman. It is almost the same as a Sarranid Infantry, but with a horse.
Sarranid Archer The upgarde of the Sarranid Skirmisher. The second best ranged Sarranid troop. Almost the same as the Skirmisher, but with a tad better armor, and fires arrows instead of javelins.
Sarranid Guard The best infantry of the Sarranid Sultanate. If you want to guard a castle, this is the perfect troop for you.
Sarranid Mamluke The best cavalry of the Sarranid Sultanate. Is equipped with some good and heavy iron-ish armor and a good mace.
Sarranid Master Archer The best Sarranid archer. Some good chainmail and iron armor. Perfect for keeping enemies off your castle.
Download the mod you wish to install Remember where you downloaded the file.
Extract the files Using a file extractor such as 7-Zip or WinRar, right-click the file and choose 'Extract Here', or open it with your extraction program and extract it that way.
Copy the extracted files to Warband's Modules folder STEAM USERS:
C:/Program Files (x86)/Steam/steamapps/common/mountblade warband/Modules or C:/Program Files/Steam/steamapps/common/mountblade warband/Modules
C:/Program Files/Mount and Blade Warband/Modules or C:/Program Files/TaleWorlds/Mount and Blade Warband/Modules
Launch Mount & Blade: Warband When you've extracted the mod to your modules folder, launch Mount & Blade: Warband and check the Modules drop-down box in the game launcher. Select the new module and play.