The Banner Saga: Factions is the premiere multiplayer role-playing strategy game on PC and Mac. It brings the feeling of beloved tactical games to a high-definition era with gorgeous hand-animated artwork and a degree of depth unprecedented in the realm of free games. Fight, learn, and lead your clan of vikings to glory!
User reviews: Very Positive (513 reviews)
Release Date: Feb 25, 2013

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Reviews

"A mixture of ocean-like tactical depth and frantic mid-match pacing that feels impressively different."
Rock Paper Shotgun

"When you first boot it up, you'll probably find yourself just... staring."

- Kotaku

"In The Banner Saga you feel the cost of every unit weighing on you... Factions might be the Saving Private Ryan of RPGs."

- Indie Statik

About This Game

The Banner Saga: Factions is the premiere multiplayer role-playing strategy game on PC and Mac. It brings the feeling of beloved tactical games to a high-definition era with gorgeous hand-animated artwork and a degree of depth unprecedented in the realm of free games. Fight, learn, and lead your clan of vikings to glory!

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
    Minimum:
    • OS:Windows XP
    • Processor:1.6GHz
    • Memory:512 MB RAM
    Recommended:
    • Memory:1024 MB RAM
    • Other Requirements:Broadband Internet connection
    Minimum:
    • OS:10.7.5
    • Processor:1.83GHz
    • Memory:1GB RAM
    Recommended:
    • Memory:2GB RAM
Helpful customer reviews
43 of 64 people (67%) found this review helpful
1.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 1
I played the solo campain with great pleasure. Ambiance, strong fight mecanisms and nice artwork are still there but...

This declination is a pay to win with quite a bad interface where you always search how to do things.

Please avoid pay to win games, they have to disapear.
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12 of 12 people (100%) found this review helpful
9.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 1
Great game. Artwork is unique and amazing. The strategy has a lot of depth and you'll get punished if you just blindly do something in a battle

There's a few things that this game definitely needs however. The major one would be more base unit types
Right now it only has Warrior, Shieldbanger, Archer and Raider. Each of these units can be upgraded to 3 types. But I believe the game needs AT LEAST 2 more base units to give it more depth. I think the single player has some more units so I hope they add that to the multi as well and add more base units in future

Also a little more customization would be nice. Only customization you currently have is different colors for units which looks a bit repetitive after a while

All in all a solid strategy game but has potential for to do even better
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8 of 9 people (89%) found this review helpful
2.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 4
Very good PVP-game if you've a fan of the strategy elements of Banner Saga. Very good balanced, but exp is hard to come by. Drives me angry that you can specific klasses only with real money but a free game is a free game, right? :D
Definitively worth a try!
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19 of 30 people (63%) found this review helpful
0.4 hrs on record
Posted: October 12
Matches take forever because you are required to do more actions/confirmations each turn, animations are slow and opponents intentionally wait for turn to end.

So, just play the single player game because multiplayer isn't fun when you have so long matches and you get so little rewards. Upgrades cost too much so you can Pay To Advance if you feel like it (you probably don't).
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9 of 12 people (75%) found this review helpful
1.7 hrs on record
Posted: August 8
A light-heartened adventure. A truely beautiful game. Incredible animation and character buit-up. I came to this game by its art, and I love it for its gameplay. It's a shame that not many people play it. Highly recommended for anyone who love Turn-based tactics games.
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7 of 11 people (64%) found this review helpful
11.8 hrs on record
Posted: September 16
Good people dwell here, the game is also fun and matches go fairly quick.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
45.4 hrs on record
Posted: October 20
The potential in the game is vast as this game is amazing! If your into turn based games this is a must have! at first i wasn't familiar with the theme and it was far from what i was used to. But i learned to love it and the community that comes along with it! Who know's, i might see you around on it if you give it a try.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
117.1 hrs on record
Posted: December 20
Note: As of this review, I've not played the single player version, The Banner Saga.

This game is a very simple turn-based brawler. In terms of pure mechanics, I'd say it plays like a stripped down X-COM: EU/EW, minus perma-death. Or like viking flavored chess. Of course, both of these examples are simplifications.

I really enjoy the balance of the gameplay. Even though it's pure PVP, I've never felt cheated, which IMO is unusual for a competitive multiplayer game. There's only a limited stock of different units, part of why the game is so balanced.

On the other hand, limited unit type means limited unit variation, which is unfortunate. I've come to understand that besides not including enemy faction units (the dredge) from the single player, there is at least one more viking unit missing.

Additionally, you earn Renown (your currency and XP) at a slow rate, clearly to induce you to go to the shop and spend real money. However, paying doesn't grant access to anything that anyone else can except for skins and extra renown.

While I've spent a shameful amount of time on this game, I have a proportionately substantial team to show for it and I haven't paid a dime. Unlike other F2Ps where I wondered "Well what was the point?" when I finally logged off.

It's free. It's balanced and fun. It's rewarding and beautiful to look at. I fully recommend giving it a try.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
11.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 3
Great Game...The soundtracks , the combat , the dynamics are great...
Everything is in order , just have to press the ''Play'' button and ENJOY :)
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2 of 4 people (50%) found this review helpful
9.8 hrs on record
Posted: July 24
If you like the gameplay then it's a good game to kill some free time. It's not very captivating but it's free, beautiful and entertaining. At least you can try :)
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4 of 8 people (50%) found this review helpful
152.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 25
Beautiful, excellent sound design, skill-based, unforgiving.
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6 of 12 people (50%) found this review helpful
1.2 hrs on record
Posted: October 8
One thing I noticed when playing this is that the game looks noticeably better in-game than in the screenshots. The colors are more vibrant and there are some visual effects whereas in the screenshots it looks old and washed out. Like other tactical games, the ones that stand out as one of the 'good ones', Banner Saga: Factions is easy to learn and hard to master. The file size is small so you don't have to wait very long for the download in order to try it. Also, it's not pay-to-win.
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3 of 6 people (50%) found this review helpful
3.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 4
Seemingly simple, yet difficult to master tactics game..
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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
3.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 10
Fantastic artwork, and a really old-school feeling on all of it. I really liked the game, even though I usually hate MMORPG and similar kind of games. It really feels like the ol' good turn-based multiplayer that some gamers like me miss so much.
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63 of 76 people (83%) found this review helpful
127.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 25, 2013
If you like tactics games and multiplayer this game has quite a bit of depth to it. The hand animated character models really feel like living things, and theres quite a bit of polish. There haven't been any huge balance tweaks in a while, but the core game is amazing. Can't wait for the single player to release!
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45 of 54 people (83%) found this review helpful
14.2 hrs on record
Posted: June 27
This game is under "Favorites" in my library. It's a free to play multiplayer game that almost anyone can run.
If you want a mature community and a game in which you fight with opponents that are clever and intelligent, this is the game for you.
Certainly not one of Pay-to-win titles.
I like how the art is done and the soundtrack itself is incredible.
Start playing this game, outmaneuver your opponents, upgrade your warriors, participate in tournaments or just play against your friend.
Next to Chess and Worms Armageddon, this is the game I would play with my family members.
10/10 - This is the game I would play rather than some overrated AAA crap!
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47 of 60 people (78%) found this review helpful
505.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 13, 2013
It's viking themed, its artwork design is retro-stylish and reminiscent of golden Disney era and it resembles chess but with more diversity and "easy to grasp difficult to master" mechanics. It has an awesome community and it's free to play with no pay-to-win features.

"This game is simply great and greatly simple." --- doomator
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24 of 27 people (89%) found this review helpful
0.8 hrs on record
Posted: March 16
If you have played The Banner Saga, you know what to expect.

If you have not, well, it is a game for those MMO enthusiasts who like a slower pace, more calculating approach and generally leaning towards chess rather than Wipeout in their games. Only complaints I would have are the same as for the "original" TBS: we could use more animation and more (i.e. any) voiceover. Other than that, the graphics are delightful, the atmosphere is great and the audio is fantastic.

Definitely for the calmer, more realxed gamer. If you want a game for long winter evenings you will not be disappointed.
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29 of 38 people (76%) found this review helpful
217.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 26, 2013
An excellent game with plenty of strategy if you persevere and learn the mechanics. In contrast to some other reviews out there, there is no real random element to this game if you learn how to play it, and learning the game is made all the easier by the friendly community which are always happy to help. I can't reccommend this game enough and as it's free there's no reason not to try it!
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19 of 21 people (90%) found this review helpful
89.7 hrs on record
Posted: March 7
Great art, great concept, great community. A truly great game, which I highly recommend to everyone who likes turn-based games.
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