Okay so there's a lot I want to put into this review, addressing a lot of things that I personally noticed when I considered buying this game (got it just recently). One of the biggest things making me question buying the game were the heavily mixed review for the game. I basically decided, I wouldn't really know for sure if the game was as good or as bad as it was "explained to be" until I tried the game for myself. So after buying the game and playing it for a reasonable amount of time I'd like to give my opinion on the good, the bad, and overall.
-I really like the artwork, design, and music in this game (these things really enhance a game for me personally; I really wish they had the option to take the nice music from the title screen and have it play during the game)
-A lot more things can be done in this game with towns and such unlike the original Mount and Blade games, which is something I really wanted in Mount and Blade. You literally have a huge selection of town buildings, military buildings, and resource production buildings.
-Something VERY nice in this game is that your Renown actually controls what options you have available to you. From what I observed you start with the title "Sailor" at 0 Renown, and I suppose you can build your title to match those of other character in game (I saw some Admiral, Commodore, and other titles for NPCs). Your men are more inspired to follow you the higher your Renown is. For example, your army will not follow a Sailor as he sieges a prestigious Kingdom.
-The Naval Battles in this game look really nice and definately have the potential to be very good once a few bugs and glitches are worked out.
-The Land Battle formations and pre-game army organization is very in-depth and creative, although still buggy.
-There is a big difference in how you progress as a Captain, with all new sets of traits that really allow your character to become any kind of Captain/Pirate you want.
-With all the new concepts, there aren't really in-depth tutorials when you first enter the game (although there are some nice fan-made guides on the forums)
-I encountered a few glitches while playing
- For some reason during all my naval battles when I went to 2x or 3x speed my ship would rotate 360 degrees uncontrollabley under water
- At the start of each land battle a script error would always pop into my chat; something about AI formations/planning and such. This bug isn't really as big of a deal, it just ends up delaying the killfeed a little bit
- There are little quirks and bugs here and there, nothing major (that I've encountered), just little frustrating things here and there
-There isn't a lot of interaction/dialogue (at least early on) with a lot of Governors, Generals/Admirals, and other people you'd think you'd be able to talk to. I was stuck for a reasonable amount of time trying to figure out how to kind of get started (making allies/enemies, etc)
Conclusion: Overall, I would recommend getting this game although it does need a few updates to fix bugs and such. I wouldn't say the game is 100% complete, but what game is fully bug-proof and such just after release? I'd say in a couple months or so of the Devs working on patches the single player would be pretty much complete and enjoyable. I did have fun with this game, as there are a lot of new concepts and such to understand. One of the biggest things I believe needs to be added is a more in-depth tutorial as there really are a lot of new features in this game compared to that of Mount and Blade titles. When this game is a lot closer to fully-complete, it has the potential to be phenomenal