PC Gamer
Indie Mod DB awards


Choosing the best thing out of a pile of really good things is always a tough decision, but hey, we're used to it. You too can participate in the careful choicemaking by voting for your favorite mod and indie game of the year over at Mod DB and Indie DB, where the top 100 nominations were just plucked from a gargantuan pool of over 9,000 mods and 5,500 indies.

With friendly vote buttons large and in charge until December 21, each database's 100 selections are sorted by genre and game for easy perusal. Numerous strong contenders vie for your mouse-click's thumbs-up, including noteworthy entries DayZ, The Dark Mod, Chivalry: Medieval Warfare, and Natural Selection 2.

Current favorites leading the pack are Half-Life 2's powerful mod lineup—among which Black Mesa and our own 2011 Mod of the Year No More Room in Hell count themselves among the ranks—and role-playing indie games. You'll find Legend of Grimrock, Dear Esther, Mount & Blade: Warband, and others in the latter category. But like everyone's slowly expanding backlog of shame, plenty of other potentials yearn for your attention. Head to both award pages for the full lists.
PC Gamer
battle cry


You might remember developers Flying Squirrel from their work on the multiplayer Mount & Blade expansion Napoleonic Wars, but one look at their first standalone project, the brilliantly ambitious Battle Cry of Freedom, and that short sulky Frenchman will be forever banished from your mind. Like Assassin's Creed 3, it's set during the American Civil War, but not the American Civil War as imagined by a grumpy bartender lying in a sci-fi sunbed. Read on for details, including mention of the 500-player(!) battles.

Here it is: whoa, there's going to be 500-player battles. Actually, there's a '+' in there too, so the game may be capable of supporting even more. Other things we can expect: historically accurate maps, uniforms and weapons, a "completely destructible environment", 3D voice chat, 5X5 km big maps and, perhaps best of all, "special musician units with drums, fifes, fiddles or trumpets, able to play historically accurate tunes." It appears as if combat will be largely similar to that seen in Mount & Blade, but with a bigger focus on muskets, obviously.

Flying Squirrel are taking donations on their homepage via their own form of Kickstarter, and at the time of writing they've raised just over a grand of their surprisingly low 60,000 Euros goal. 20 Euros is the minimum donation needed to bag a digital copy on release (plus early beta access), though if you have a spare million, the developers promise to "personally fly over to you and host the most awesome party you have ever had in your life". Hey now - I've been to a roller disco. I'm not sure anything will ever compete with that.
PC Gamer
Mount and Blade 2


Taleworlds are working on a sequel to Mount and Blade subtitled "Bannerlord" according to the teaser trailer posted on the Mount and Blade site. There are no screenshots or details at all yet, but this is excellent news nonetheless. Mount and Blade 2 promises to once again "take players on a journey into a fictional world of up-close and personal medieval combat on a huge scale, bigger, bloodier and more intense than ever before" and include "highly requested new features." Oooh, what could those be?

There is a teaser trailer, but I don't want to get your hopes up. It is just a series of dramatic statements layered over some mist. LET THE LAND BURN AND THE BLOOD FLOW.

Shacknews - Alice O'Connor

For a series about building an army of warriors and rampaging across battlefields on foot with axes swinging, the announcement of Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord is awfully quiet. Developer TaleWorlds Entertainment quietly confirmed yesterday that yes, it's making the sequel to Mount & Blade: Warband, but didn't really have much else to say and the teaser trailer revealed little.

All TaleWorlds has to say about the game is contained in the following paragraph:

This sandbox action-RPG strategy hybrid will take players on a journey into a fictional world of up-close and personal medieval combat on a huge scale, bigger, bloodier and more intense than ever before. Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord will build upon the popular Mount & Blade franchise bringing in many exciting and highly requested new features.

Which is all very vague. Platforms, a release date, and all that are a mystery for now.

Kotaku

Mount & Blade, one of the guiltiest pleasures on the PC, is getting a full-blown sequel. It's called Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord.


PC Gamer
Mount and Blade Warband Napoleonic Wars


The latest update to Mount and Blade: Warband's Napoleonic Wars DLC releases the full source code into the wild, which should give Mount and Blade modders plenty to get their gnashers into. Warband's been a great platform for modders, and the extra units and features added by Napoleonic Wars has only put more muskets in the toolbox. The addition of new units, more swords, longer swords and better saddle textures can only help. The ten most popular maps from a recent community map contest have joined the rotation, and there are a bunch of balance fixes to boot.

The full update notes follow, plucked from Steam.

New features:

Added “Litovskiy Ulanskiy Polk”, Lithuanian Lancer Regiment, to Russia.
Added new swords for British Musicians and 95th Rifles, Austrian Infantry and Jägers.
Added new wall scene props for mappers - in desert and wood styles.
Added more destruction stages for some walls (that are commonly used in custom siege maps) and improved their textures.
Added new French Officers pants.
Pioneer earthworks can now be removed by using the shovel in alternate mode (accessible by press X).
Added the top ten community maps from the mapping contest.
Released full source code for modders.

 
General Changes

Remade all equipment for Russia: Cartridge bags, belts, etc.
Remade Austrian battle flags.
Players are now forced to walk when surrendering.
Improved textures of British and Austrian saddles.

 
Balance changes
Reduced the length of the bayonet slightly.
Increased the length of all cavalry swords.
Made the readying animation for the upper stab slower.
Upper stab chamber attacks are now not blockable anymore just like the lower stab.
People getting bumped by a horse now stay on the ground a bit longer before getting up.
Removed the damage a rider would receive when his horse dies.
Horses don’t rear up anymore when hit by a bayonet to their front.
Reduced the amount of bullets and damage of the Musketoon.

 
Bug Fixes
Fixed an exploit that allowed players to spawn objects on the map.
Fixed an exploit that allowed players to spawn with multiple firearms.
Fixed an exploit that allowed players to spawn naked.
Fixed a bug that made upper stabs unblockable when in crouch-mode
Fixed a bug that when a rocket launcher is picked up whilst someone is using it the player using it would get stuck.
Fixed small historical errors on Russian uniforms.
Fixed the mirrored banners above players.
Fixed stones not spawning near the walls that got destroyed.
Fixed some upside down texture errors on roofs.
Fixed some cases where you would not be able to spawn explosion crates.
Removed riding skill from pioneers.
Fixed several specular and normal map issues.

 
Product Update - Valve
Changelog 1.154

Executable is patched for fixes related with Napoleonic Wars DLC.
Check Napoleonic Wars' news page for more information.

Announcement - Valve
Save 75% off the Mount & Blade series on Steam now until Thursday at 4PM Pacific Time!

Assemble your band of hardened warriors and enter the fray of medieval combat. In an open sand box world, you choose your allies, your enemies, what provinces to conquer, what castles to siege and what quests to embark on.

Additionally, all owners of any Mount & Blade title on Steam will receive 20% off War of the Roses until its release date!

Announcement - Valve
The Steam Summer Sale continues today with huge savings throughout the store!

Today's Daily Deals Include:

Don't forget to check back for a new Community Choice vote every 8 hours and new Flash sales throughout the day! You can also grab the Steam mobile app to make sure you never miss any great deals while you're on the go!

Complete information on all the savings, Flash Sales, Community Choice Votes and more may be found on www.steampowered.com.

PC Gamer
Caribbean2


Snowbird Games, creators of Mount and Blade: With Fire and Sword, have announced their upcoming project, Caribbean, that brings many of the mechanics of M&B to a 16th-century swashbuckling setting. The Mount and Blade series is definitely in that "high investment, high reward" category that only really works on the PC (with the likes of EVE, Dwarf Fortress, and Day Z). It's also about as close as you can get to a full-blown Game of Thrones RTS.

If commanding hundreds of scallywags in real-time boarding missions interests you, read on.

Snowbird's announcement cites a trove of ambitious features, including:

Sea battles with intuitive and easy control system;
The real-time boarding fights that throw player in the centre of the action;
Detailed management and customization of both the fleet and the crew;
Complex siege system allowing the players to storm forts, harbors or entire cities;
Different kinds of artillery: shipboard cannons, mortars and howitzers;
Random events system that keeps players question their decisions during their voyage;
True ‘Carribean’ atmosphere of the vast and dangerous world;
Unique NPCs whose design based on the real historical figures;
Various multiplayer modes featuring the sea and land battles, boarding and sieges.

 
The devs say you should be able to get your hands on the buccaneering goodness this September.
...

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