Singleplayer Grade 7/10 (mainly due to bugs)
Multiplayer Grade 8/10 (If you buy this game for multiplayer, remember to check if there are still active players online playing this game)
1) TRY FREE DEMO BEFORE PURCHASING!
2) Mount & Blade Warband is much better and it has mods that bring firearms to the game.
Short review: Like mount & blade Warband, but in different setting. If you hate idea of firearms in this kind of game you shouldn't buy this game. The grade is lower than in Warband, due to some problems in gameplay and large amount of gamebraking bugs.
The singleplayer of this game gives you the possibility to lead mercenary warband in the setting of 17th century eastern europe. Like in mount and Blade warband, the experience is generally exciting and unique. Unlike Mount & blade Warband, which is like huge sandbox, this game tries to create what many consider the the Holy Grail of gaming , which is combining story and sandbox gameplay. Unfortunately the developers failed in this in many ways.
First problem is that many players didn't care at all about the story and wanted to play sandbox game, but this was difficult due to the fact that unlike in Warband, you can't create your own kingdom. You can't get married either and there are no tournaments. Because of these and some other reasosn he RPG and sandbox elements are lacking compared to Warband.
Second problem is that if you follow the story (I played the Black Mace campaign which on my opinion unfortunately wasn't interesting) you will face problems. The first one of those are huge amount of bugs, that force you to load your saved game many times during the campaing. Many of these bugs are related to the fact that the world of the game changes usually independently comapred to the story. Even when these changes don't cause actual bugs, they can seriously hamper the players attempst to progress in the story. I was for example given task to capture certain city from hostile country Poland, but by the time I had army to capture it, neutral country Crimean Kahanate had already taken it. In order to capture the town, my country would have to start war also against them. This would have been almost certain defeat due to getting into war in two fronts.
Third problem is the setting. Some people might be scared about the strange setting, but that is not what is the main problem. The problem that the setting causes is that it affects the gameplay negatively. In mount & Blade Warband, the player can both be commander of his/her troops and also be the superhero in shining armour that kills dozens of enemies on his/her own. This is even somewhat historical because armour made medieval knights very difficult to kill. In Mount & Blade: With Fire & Sword, half of those filthy peasants :-) that you used to kill without trouble are now armed with firearms, that kill you with one or two shots on hardest difficulty. Even on lower difficulty levels it is difficult to be superhero anymore. The one shot kill firearms also make melee weapons relatively weak, which is a shame, because one of the best things in Mount & Blade series is the melee combat.
Despite the severe problems in singleplayer I gave this game grade of 7, because the basic mechanics of Mount & Blade series are still there and they are great.
Multiplayer part is good, mainly due to the uniqueness of Mount & blade combat. The reason to not to give 9/10 for multiplayer is that there are no modifications for multiplayer unlike in Warband, and because the gameplay is slightly worse due to what firearms cause to the gameplay.
Posted: November 27th, 2013