Journey to distant Arabian lands renowned for brave warriors and fearsome weaponry in Stronghold Crusader HD. The highly anticipated sequel to the best-selling Stronghold, Crusader throws you into historic battles from the Crusades with fiendish AI opponents, new units, 4 historical campaigns and over 100 unique skirmish missions.
User reviews: Overwhelmingly Positive (655 reviews)
Release Date: Jul 31, 2002

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Recommended By Curators

"The highpoint of the castle-building series mixes economy with siege warfare. Some minor UI issues, outdated animations, but great game regardless."
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About This Game

Journey to distant Arabian lands renowned for brave warriors and fearsome weaponry in Stronghold Crusader HD. The highly anticipated sequel to the best-selling Stronghold, Crusader throws you into historic battles from the Crusades with fiendish AI opponents, new units, 4 historical campaigns and over 100 unique skirmish missions.


Relive the historic Crusades as Richard the Lionheart and the Saladin, Sultan of Syria. Lead a determined group of Crusaders, forged by centuries of barbaric warfare, amidst the haze of the desert heat then fight for your freedom as the mighty Saladin.

Stronghold Crusader HD features several campaigns documenting the First, Second and Third Crusades, as well as conflicts within the individual Crusader states. Battles such as Nicea, Heraclea, siege of Antioch, Krak des Chevaliers and the Siege of Jerusalem all feature, as do the Crusader Trails from the Stronghold Warchest and Stronghold Crusader Extreme.

HD Edition

With new high resolution graphics you have more control over your soldiers than ever before. The new HD battlefield view allows you to zoom out and play in real-time, with the whole map on one screen. Advance on the castle gates while flanking the enemy from behind, feign retreat and lead your foe into a deadly trap or just sit back and watch the destruction unfold.

Both Stronghold Crusader and Stronghold Crusader Extreme are included in Stronghold Crusader HD. Extreme plays exactly like the original Stronghold Crusader, only with a few additions. The unit cap has been increased from 1000 to a staggering 10,000 troops, special Tactical Powers such as the Arrow Volley can be used and new buildings make their appearance alongside the Crusader Extreme skirmish trail.

  • Join the Crusaders or the Saladin’s forces in 4 historical campaigns.
  • Fight through 100 unique skirmish missions, each one more challenging than the last.
  • Design and build your desert fortress, with a working economy and brutal killing zones.
  • Command new units with unique abilities, such as the stealthy Assassin and nimble Horse Archer.
  • High resolution graphics allow you to view the entire map on a single screen.
  • Steam Cloud support for saved games.
  • Updated for Windows XP, Vista, 7 and 8 compatibility.

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows 2000/XP/Vista/7/8
    • Processor: Pentium® III 500 mhz
    • Memory: 128 MB RAM
    • Graphics: 64MB DirectX 8.1 Compatible
    • DirectX: Version 8.1
    • Hard Drive: 850 MB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX 8.1 Compatible
Helpful customer reviews
4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
4.0 hrs on record
Another great classic among strategy games.

Definately worth looking for Medieval History enthusiasts, Age of Empires players and generally everyone that's looking forward to a well done Castle Building (quite similar to city building with a military approach) Strategy Real-Time game.
The style makes this very unique.
The music speaks for a lot, with authentic and faithfully created Arab music, the desert everywhere!

It's really worth it, even if the "HD" doesn't look as great as some other remakes - it works great and that's all that I personally could ask for, as there isn't that much to improve here really aside from issues with launching the game.
Posted: October 16
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
33.0 hrs on record
Much better than Stronghold Crusader 2, unfortunately..
Posted: September 27
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
40.3 hrs on record
5 out of 5

The gaming equivalent of heaven.

Stronghold Crusader is a castle building strategy game. Whether you like castles or medieval times is irrelevant, if you like strategy games you will adore this game.

Coming off the successful 2001 hit Stronghold, Stronghold Crusader removes and improves elements of its predecessor to galore the public with a map editor and a skirmish mode, however for newcomers a game tutorial is sadly not available.
Posted: October 20
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
29.9 hrs on record
PITCH needed
not 'nough wood m'lord

Even though this game is old as ♥♥♥♥ its still better than the majority of new(er) strategies
Posted: October 6
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
5.0 hrs on record
"This game requires skilled engineers to play, m'lord!"
Posted: October 14
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
6.3 hrs on record
Love this game ! played it years ago and brings back great memories !
Posted: September 27
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
4.3 hrs on record
Best game my lord <3
Posted: October 20
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1 of 3 people (33%) found this review helpful
4.9 hrs on record
Uh im bad at long winded reviews so let me try and sum this up in short form?..

Stronghold Crusaders HD-
Bird-eye view Strat. Action game, set in a desert you Crusade around in historical missions OR set up combat fights for you and AI and test your self on your ability to kick AI Robot ♥♥♥.

Though i do strongly recommend this game to anyone who loves Strategy games, Medieval games or just something to pass time.
Posted: September 29
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2 of 8 people (25%) found this review helpful
1.1 hrs on record
Cant open the game when i do a quarter of my screen goes black and then it says theres and error then it closes thanks for a waste of money
Posted: October 18
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0 of 5 people (0%) found this review helpful
0.1 hrs on record
unfortunitly i dont know why but i love all the other Stronghold games but this one wont seem to run i downloaded and it added a program then launches but crashs and gives no error code so im going to have to say dislike as much as it pains meto do.
Posted: October 9
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1 of 8 people (13%) found this review helpful
0.2 hrs on record
i get black sreen it wont work help me
Posted: October 11
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4.0 hrs on record
This is the best game I've ever played. [I've just know that this game was on steam. lol]
And this is...

My way to survive for strategy noob.
-Build Apple Orchard as many as possible.
-Build Granary.
-Click Granary and raise it to "Extra Ration"
-Build Woodcutter's camp.
-Build Hovel as least as possible.
-Build Quarry and Ox tether [1:1]
-Click on stone keep and raise tax to "Low taxes"
-Build more stockpile.
-Build some Dairy Farm.
-Build Chapel.
-Build 10 Town Gardens.
-Click on stone keep again and raise tax to "High taxes"
-Build Market
-Build Armory
-Build Fletcher's Workshop
-Build Barrack

Continue on your own way. Survived!
Posted: September 26
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8.9 hrs on record
Stronghold Crusader had the best gameplay in the entire series, but the graphics were getting a little bit outdated after a decade. This HD re-release makes it look good enough to last another decade. Don't expect fancy 3D graphics, this is old-school isometric 2.5D.

The gameplay is solid. There are tutorials to teach you the basics and there are two "crusader trails" with about 50 missions each to give you a lot of different scenarios to play through. There are also campaigns with a story to them.

You play as a lord in the time of the crusades. You start with a small manor and a hand full of troops and there are enemies who want you dead. Build farms to grow food to keep your population alive. Gather resources such as wood, stone and metal. Build up a castle wall-by-wall according to your own design. Put down towers of different shapes and sizes: small tall towers to give your archers extra range, and big lower towers on which you can mount siege weapons. Have your population craft weapons to train soldiers or hire mercenaries with gold. Then try to invade your enemies' castles. Build catapults to destroy their walls, or use siege ladders to get your archers on their walls to turn their safe castle into a slaughterhouse. Beware of hidden traps like spike pits and burning oil.

Skirmish mode allows you to pick from a few dozen maps, some balanced and some unbalanced. Want to play 4 vs 4 on a balanced map? Want a real challenge, then pick an unbalanced map and stack the odds against you.

The AI does not have traditional difficulty levels, but there are a number of AI personalities that have their own strategy. Fighting against the Caliph means you have to be prepared dirty tricks like waves of slaves trying to burn down your farms, and fire arrow archers trying to set the ground on fire when you try to take his castle. King Richard attacks with honor and superior force using siege weapons and heavily armored units. The Sultan is a dreamer who focuses more on building an economy than training a superior army. The Snake thows large numbers of archers and spearmen at you, favoring quantity over quality.
Posted: September 27
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39.3 hrs on record
do not buy for online play, uses gameranger not steam, and you play with people that didnt buy the game.
Posted: October 21
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19.8 hrs on record
[10 unique and valuable pro tips for beating crusader extreme below]

As someone who was addicted to strategy games around the time the original crusader game came out, I would heavily recommend this to people who either like age of empires, who would like to relive those days and to those people who like challenges. The game includes Crusader Extreme HD, with missions 'so difficult' (the first 14 missions took me 1-3 hours each, excluding some start-over missions because i failed) that you need to resort to a very defensive guerilla/ninja playing style to succeed. there's missions where u have to defeat more than 7 opponents on a single map, all by yourself. And everyone starts with the same resources.

After some restarted missions and succeeding (im about halfway now i guess, at mission 14) i found out a strategy that works out for 90% of the missions. If you want to figure this out yourself do not read on, i will not mention anything new. but for those who quit out of frustration heres how you can do it:

1. some missions involve defeating multiple opponents of which some are very closeby, even withing arrow range of your castle (you dont want that). use up all you money to build knights and send them in to kill the enemies close to you. in some missions, its possible to kill enemy lords before they have even built their castle.
2. NEVER forget to build a market in the beginning. not all maps offer all resource types within range or within castle building range, which means e.g. if theres only quarry near the keep, you will have to put as any quarry miines there as possible and sell some of it to buy stone/wood.
3. always start off building 3 more stockpile spaces (free), a market, 2-4 hovels depending on how much starting resources u have, and a combination of 5, 10 or 15 'good things' and a church (or 2, if u can), and either a mercenary post or barracks + armory. buying weapons to recruit non-mercenary troops is usually cheaper. mercenary post recommended when u have a lot of starting money.
4. build a wall ASAP around your keep with enough space to put in all your buildings needed to recruit ttroops and keep the economy going. set mercenary slaves or regular troops like spearman and archers at work to dig a moat on the inner side of the wall, then build another wall that will actually function as your wall. the first wall is just to protect them from harm while digging. if youre skilled at timing things and monitoring progress, you won't need to but if you have plenty of starting cash in some missions then this is a safe method.
5. do not forget to build stairs at your walls. because it is not possible to build when enemies are close and then your guys wont be able to man the walls/towers you built.
6. if you build a keep, always build a bridge at it right away.
7. save up the rock volley to slowly kill off enemytroop spawn posts during missions. do not use it up for anything else unless you really really need it because you would lose your lord otherwise or enemy is about to breach walls.
8. enemy knights are the biggest problem when they attack early in the game. therefore, just buy leather armour and crossbows and build crossbow archers or when low on cash u will need sligshot mercs who have strengths in great numbers.
9. last but very important tip: if u wanna destroy an enemy castle, bring plenty of archers. like 50+ . and put them in a place where they can hit the enemies campfire where the peasants gather. set attack location instead of directly clicking a peasant cuz they will stop attacking when all peasants are down and hit other targets instead. this prevents them from building new troops while u are attacking, which was often the reason i lost all my troops cuz the enemy started building knights superfast and in the end i didnt have enough troops to get on top of the keep and kill the leader.
10. Try to build a perimiter wall ALL AROUND buildings that involve a production chain. if it's not possible, put a big waterpot near valuable locations and station some archers that can easily kill off slaves who want to lit up your mines for example.

i could give more tips, but these things i found out and used helped me through the first 14 missions fairly easy. you should figure the rest out for yourself through trial and error
Posted: October 15
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1.5 hrs on record
Food, food ,food...I'm putting on so much weight.
Posted: October 8
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13.9 hrs on record
Its very lovely
Posted: October 12
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13.3 hrs on record
A must have for medieval RTS fans! Also look at Stronghold and ignore the other games in the series.
Posted: October 10
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109.2 hrs on record
Basic castle building sim, decent combat, easy UI, overall great game.
Posted: October 10
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21.3 hrs on record
I grew up on this game, and I still love it. Classic castle sim/medieval warfare, plenty of missions to play, and above all, a great soundtrack. 10/10, would play again
Posted: October 10
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