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Live through an epic role-playing Viking saga where your strategic choices directly affect your personal journey. Make allies as you travel with your caravan across this stunning yet harsh landscape. Carefully choose those who will help fight a new threat that jeopardizes an entire civilization.
Release Date: Jan 14, 2014
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Downloadable Content For This Game

Recent updates View all (5)

The Banner Saga Patch 2 - Release Notes - 2.6.45

June 20th, 2014

Major Updates:
  • Translated into 6 Languages: Deutsch, Français, Русский, Português (Brasil), Polski, and Español!
  • Added Save Profile Slots!
  • Balanced and Tuned the Bellower fight!
  • You can set your desired language by right-clicking the game and changing Properties, or from within the game itself via the Options menu. If you change to a non-English language, Subtitles will automatically be enabled.
Save Slots:
  • There are now 5 Save Profiles that you can use. All of your existing save games will be automatically migrated into 'Profile 1' when you start the game.
Bellower Fight:
  • The difficulty curve has been tuned. Your party's injuries are now healed before the Bellower fight due to your long stay in Boersgard. Bellower and his minions are not as strong in Normal difficulty.
  • Added and updated many Kickstarter Backer names
  • Deleted the tents on the left side of the forest camp for medium population
  • Changed Dredge Splinter Passive to no longer triggers Bellower's enrage attack
  • Made the Bellower fight easier by lowering his max str/arm for the second round in normal and easy mode. Also made henchmen lower tiers
  • Added confirmation box to delete progress and start new game
  • Added video disable command line option for people experiencing video crashes: '-video_disable'
  • Updated FMOD to 4.44.34
  • Added confirmation dialog to skip introductory Videos
  • Converted both intro videos to 720p 24fps FLV
  • Added sound effect occurs when clicking the Help button in the Heroes menus.
  • Added sfx when dragging and dropping character cards on Heroes & Assemble screens
  • Character portraits in Heroes Details now load as needed instead of all loading when Heroes opens
  • Zeno Content editing tool is now included with the game. See the forums for information about how to Mod The Banner Saga.
Bug Fixes:
  • FIXED: Party Injuries do not heal as days pass in Boersgard
  • FIXED: Shooting Silver Arrow while at 1 Strength causes Game Over
  • FIXED: Level 5 characters do not show equipped items description while in battle
  • FIXED: Occasional issue in Chapter 3 that prevent save files from saving
  • FIXED: Items cannot be purchased from the Market when loading from some save games
  • FIXED: Issue with credits crawl slowing down near the end of the credits
  • FIXED: Character equipped with Eyeless Rift still sees chance to hit percentage
  • FIXED: Pressing Esc while information is up on Heroes screen will exit fullscreen
  • FIXED: Clicking an item in the marketplace after closing the Options menu creates a console error
  • FIXED: Item highlight in marketplace flicks on and off if cursor is directly below the item
  • FIXED: Continue button text is not centered in the button on the Heroes page
  • FIXED: Credits do not exit after reaching the end
Build Number: 2.6.45
The build number is displayed in the titlebar of the game window, and at the beginning of your log files.

Log file location:
Windows: %HOMEPATH%\AppData\Roaming\TheBannerSaga\Local Store\logs\
  • Open Windows Explorer
  • Paste the path into the location bar textbox and hit Enter
Mac OS X: ~/Library/Application Support/TheBannerSaga/Local Store/logs/
  • Open Finder
  • Hit Command-Shift-G to open the “Go to the folder:” popup dialog
  • Paste the path into the textbox and hit Enter

55 comments Read more

Humble Bundle Daily Deal + Update

May 15th, 2014

Howdy Folks!

We're working on our next update and hoping to get it out to you soon! Check out the steam discussions page for more info.

We're also pleased to announce that we're the featured deal on the Humble Bundle store today - so you can grab the game at a great price and help out an awesome charity. Head to www.humblebundle.com to learn more.

24 comments Read more


“Game of Thrones Meets Vikings Meets Disney. The Banner Saga is blindingly lovely and arguably just as intriguing to play. Built atop a world that all but demands the attention of travel documentaries, it's epic in the literal sense of the word.”
100% – US Gamer

“With a refreshingly unique aesthetic, well-written story, and challenging gameplay, The Banner Saga is an excellent adventure well worth your time.”
90% – Games Radar

“The Banner Saga deserves commendation for the strength of its art and music experience alone, which shatters conventions.”
86% – IGN

Digital Deluxe Edition

The Deluxe Edition – Combines The Banner Saga with the official soundtrack which includes 29 tracks by Grammy nominated, and two time BAFTA Award winning, composer Austin Wintory, performed by the Dallas Winds orchestra plus a powerhouse trio of acclaimed YouTube sensations: vocalists Peter Hollens and Malukah and violinist Taylor Davis.

About the Game

Live through an epic role-playing Viking saga where your strategic choices directly affect your personal journey. Make allies as you travel with your caravan across this stunning yet harsh landscape. Carefully choose those who will help fight a new threat that jeopardizes an entire civilization. Every decision you make in travel, conversation and combat has a meaningful effect on the outcome as your story unfolds. Not everyone will survive, but they will be remembered.

Key Features

  • Player choice that drives your own narrative – every decision you make in travel, conversation and combat has a meaningful effect on the outcome as your story unfolds.
  • Over 25 playable characters from 2 different races, human and varl, the horned giants – embark on your epic journey with a variety of characters from 7 different classes, each with unique abilities and upgrade options to fit your play style.
  • Strategic combat with consequences - victory or defeat and even the permanent loss of a character depends on which characters you choose to take into battle and what decisions you make afterwards.
  • The journey is as important as battle – your role in building and managing your caravan as you travel the vast frozen landscape is critical to not only your own survival but the survival of an entire civilization.
  • An epic Viking saga brought to life in 2D glory – beautifully hand drawn combat sequences and animations, accompanied by an evocative score from Grammy-nominated composer Austin Wintory, will immerse you into a fantasy realm inspired by Norse mythology.
  • Multiplayer Combat Enhanced – sharpen your combat skills in the free multiplayer game “Factions”. Compete against other players with many of the character classes you see in The Banner Saga.

PC System Requirements

    • OS: Windows XP SP3
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Hard Drive: 3 GB available space
    • OS: Windows 7 SP1
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Hard Drive: 6 GB available space

Mac System Requirements

    • OS: MAC OSX 10.7.5
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Hard Drive: 3 GB available space
    • OS: MAC OSX 10.7.5
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Hard Drive: 6 GB available space
Helpful customer reviews
1,690 of 2,181 people (77%) found this review helpful
34 products in account
5 reviews
10.7 hrs on record
I backed this game on Kickstarter very early on, basically after having read the words "turn based strategy" and "vikings" and had very high hopes for the project.
During the first hour of play I was entusiastic and impressed with the artwork, the graphical style, the music and the combat system. It runs well, I encountered no major bugs, and the story starts very intense and engrossing.
Now, after nearing the end of my first (and, most likely, only) playthrough I can sum up my personal experience with a single sentence: I learned to *thoroughly* hate this game.
I'm terribly sorry, I desperately wanted to like this, but with every tedious, frustrating and boring hour of gameplay I had to concede, that just about *every* design choice made by Stoic seems to go diametrically against my personal preferences.
Trying to cast an objective vote, I'd rate it about 5 out of 10, because there are undoubtedly many things good about the game, but the essence of what it's about - having fun, being motivated and enjoying the time spent playing - simply doesn't happen.
TBS is the very definition of a railroaded game. More than that, it actually *feels* like more than half of the time I'm actually watching pointless, endlessly repeating nice backgrounds scrolling past, while nothing happens. Events are scarce, and when they happen, they kill my motivation and the RPG aspect. Because, frankly, I'm NOT making decisions. I'm playing a random guessing game, in most cases with absolutely *no* clue on what the consequences of the 4 "choose your answer" alternatives *might* even be. I hate playing a game where I don't even know the rules, and I hate winning every battle and then losing my heroes (and the associated investment!) to random dialogue events.
The world map is like a bad joke on my expense, as it serves absolutely *no* function in the game but as a "choose your flavour text" library. It feels like there's an entire aspect of the game simply never implemented here...
Same goes for character development and resource management. Both are oversimplified, shallow and simply feel completely unfinished. Each character has one single item slot, and the items available are nothing special. Abilities are pretty much predetermined, and dividing 10 points you *might* receive during 5 ranks isn't that big a deal towards diverity or individualization.
There is one single resource for everything (renown) and one single sure way to acquire it (by killing enemies in combat). Sometimes you might draw a lucky card during the random dialogue guessing game and acquire some extra, but that's it. As the resource is used to buy supplies, items *and* for leveling up your heroes, it comes down to either have your caravan starve or run around with level 1 heroes, despite them having earned several promotions on the battlefield. That kills motivation on such an epic scale, and can't even begin to describe it.
There are no side quests, no method to forage for food, trade, to gain extra renown or anything - remember, you are on one long, single track railway and never look left or right. You will *never* feel in control of *anything* in this game. For me, however, that is what gaming should be about.
Even the combat system, one of the best parts otherwise, has several unnerving flaws that started bothering me in the long run:
- You are forced to choose your team *and* the sequence in which they act *before* you know anything about the enemies you will face. Why is there even a deployment phase at the begin of combat if all you do there is arrange the predetermined team on the board? That placement will be void after one round of movement, a wrong party mix or suboptimal sequence will stay, however.
- the way the two sides take turns is beyond silly. If you face a single, strong opponent, that one will act 6 times for every ONCE your heroes do something, as it's always the *sides* that take turns.
- one stat for hitpoints AND combat effectiveness basically means, that the battles are decided in the first round. The side that starts taking hits is the side that will lose. Always. Without a way to regain strength, a single hit can de facto disable a hero. The whole system is too simplistic, counter-intuitive and artificial. Simple to understand, but never becomes fun for me.
And another main grief is the complete absense of a save game feature. Not because of technical problems, but simply because the designers want to forbid me to play the game any other way than to live with the random outcome of their nonsensical guessing games. Sorry, folks, I'm 45 years old, have been playing games for 30 years and don't need *anyone* to tell me how to. This arrogant patronizing annoys me to kingdom come!
So, again, sorry Stoic for being so negative, but this game is so totally NOT my piece of cake. Terrific art, great lore, good music and a stable game do NOT equal fun, I'm afraid. Lots of bad design choices for me equal de-motivation, tedium, boredom and frustration. Others might love this game, probably the majority. But it's definitely 100% not for me - and the files were deleted after that completely silly, unfair and annoying final battle.
Posted: January 19th, 2014
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A developer has responded on Jul 14, 2014 @ 4:00pm
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186 of 246 people (76%) found this review helpful
924 products in account
90 reviews
26.4 hrs on record
The story itself starts off with humans and varl(giants) trying to bond thier alliance when suddenly everyone getting attacked by the armies of dredge (stonelike people) and are forced to travel away to confront this diaster, as you travel the lands you'll discover friends, encounter wars, and make choices that will change the outcome of your party. You'll be playing this game from the perspective of two different caravans.

What an amazing game for its value, The art in this game is fantastic, the story is also very well done and the music is phenominal you'll enjoy this game if you enjoy turn table tatic with great art, story, and music with a viking theme to the entire game. only cutscenes had voice acting and that was pretty good. The only things I thought was meh in the game was is how a unit must kill off a unit to level up otherwise he'll stay level 1 forever so you'll have to really decide who you want to level up, the limited special moves that each of the units had (which is 1) for each char, and the lack of voice acting during the events scenes but this is understandable due to the fact that its an indie title and the focus of the budget was on everything else. So hopeful for future sequels to be even better.

The game itself is really hard due to the fact that you cannot heal your units in this game so you have to make your turn wisely, Your units only levels up if they get the last kill which I was meh about, but the choices you make to either level up your army, buy some items, or supplies for the travel is gutwrenching making the game really challenging, especially since choices you make can effect your entire party and army and your currency (renown) is so limited.

There is many heroes to gather during your travel which you'll get to interact with at camp as you travel to learn about them. The travel itself which reminds me of oregon trail a bit, is enjoyable to watch as your little army travel the lands and the events with decisions unfold for you to decide on how your battle will be or what the outcomes will be. The map itself presents a sizeable amount of lore about the land itself and there are more to read as you travel.

+Good story with good amount of lore and character interactions.
+Great Art.
+Music is fantastic.
+much replayability due to choices you make in the game, also there is interaction with the heroes at camp.
+its a 20 dollar game and have a good amount of hour in it, 10+

-wish there was voice acting during the traveling event, lots of reading and text
-each char only has one skill, not everyone has a buncha skills to utilize and the leveling is really straightforward since you can only level chars up to level 5 max, would love to see expansion of this
-No multiplayer of any sort in this one, singleplayer only you'll have to play THE BANNER SAGA FACTIONS for this.
Posted: January 15th, 2014
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157 of 224 people (70%) found this review helpful
303 products in account
12 reviews
5.1 hrs on record
Oh, Banner Saga. I supported you on Kickstarter, and I wanted so much to love you. Your visuals are gorgeous, your music excellent, and your writing sublime. But your gameplay! Ah, your gameplay leaves much to be desired.

Drama aside, The Banner Saga is a game that should have been excellent, but is marred by its actual gameplay. The tactical combat is the sort that some will love and some will hate, but either way the initiative system is completely nonsensical, with units in each army getting to act more often as they become outnumbered. Damage and health are also based on the same number, so as a character takes damage, he becomes increasingly ueless in battle - which is a serious problem if you outnumber your enemies.

But where the game really fails is the decisions it presents. On the surface, it looks like the system used in many games: be presented with a situation, and react. The problem is that it falls into the trap of frequently making the consequences of your choices arbitrary. Sometimes you can reasonably predict what result each choice will produce, but most of the time the results come from nowhere, making the decisions effectively meaningless. If the player can't reasonably exert control, why give him choices at all?

The game has been getting a lot of good reviews, so clearly my opinion is in the minority. But I can't recommend it. Its gameplay simply holds it back too much from being a satisfying experience.
Posted: January 16th, 2014
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59 of 73 people (81%) found this review helpful
579 products in account
2 reviews
11.4 hrs on record
The Banner Saga is a beautiful story-driven turn-based strategy game/RPG lasting about 8-12 hours. Overall, I thought it was a great experience and would recommend it to anyone who enjoys tactical strategy games like Fire Emblem and XCOM. Its major strengths are its fantastic art, reminiscent of classic Disney or Don Bluth animated films, good soundtrack, and relatively challenging and compelling battles. My primary complaint with the game is that its story is told in a bit of an exhausting way with a ton of dialogue that's not easy to care about, and I was really ready for the game to end a few hours before it actually did. Also, the game feels episodic and I'd imagine more content is on the horizon. If that's the case, I really feel like the experience didn't need to be as padded out with so many seemingly same-y towns and encounters. Still, The Banner Saga is a really ambitious title and one of the better strategy games I've played in recent memory (and certainly the most visually striking).
Posted: January 17th, 2014
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172 of 262 people (66%) found this review helpful
125 products in account
6 reviews
17.9 hrs on record
I was very disappointed in this game.

The Good

It's beautiful. The animation and soundtrack are phenomenal. The combat is satisfying.

The Bad

The story is slow to start but by the time it gets interesting the game ends. The story is presented almost entirely through text and that text reads like a "choose your own adventure novel". This would be fine but the quality of writing is lacking and the way the text jumps between third person perspective and second person narrative is annoying. It's especially annoying because there are multiple points of view for a majority of the game.

I'm an avid reader so I don't mind reading in my RPGs but I at least want some consistency.

As for the main game mechanics it's a lot like a 2D Oregon Trail. The campaign consists of two stories following two player controlled caravans as they cross a map. Most of the choices given the player consist of:

Do the smart but heartless thing
Do the dumb but moral thing
Do nothing
There will be other options but they either return you to previous "options" or are just variations on the same.

The main game mechanics consist of making dialogue choices and trying to keep your caravan of refugees alive by making the correct choices.The entire game is on rails so you don't actually change the story or make meaningful decisions (outside of combat), you just get rewarded or punished for the choices you make.


All in all the lack of real game content and lackluster story heavily detract from a beautiful game that could have been brilliant but just overall feels lacking. There's also nothing to do after the main story has concluded but play the game again. I would be okay with that if they story had been well written and the other game mechanics had been fun.

If you're looking for a finished tactical RPG keep looking. This is apparently the first of three chapters but it's up in the air if those will be made, and as it is this is not a finished game. It ends abruptly just as the story becomes interesting, and no matter what you do, the ending is the same. The store page should be more reflective of the fact that this is not a single player version of Banner Saga Factions, but is in fact more like Oregon Trail, with some tactical combat tacked on. Or maybe it's the other way around, but either way it doesn't work.

Updated Review on 1/16
Posted: January 15th, 2014
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