Stronghold Crusader 2 is the long awaited sequel to Stronghold: Crusader, the original 'castle sim'. After 12 years Stronghold returns to the deserts of the Middle East circa 1189, with a new 3D engine and realistic castle destruction powered by Havok Physics.Read full description
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Perhaps one of the strongest parts of Stronghold: Crusader 2 is the technical part of the game. It should not be the best game in terms of graphics, but it certainly offers one of the most eye-catching graphics. The game is designed with "The Vision" that its first positive mutation is to convert graphics from a two-dimensional cartoon to 3D mode, which makes the game technically to have a very big step! The animations are good and look natural from the top. Stronghold: Crusader 2 is not a revolutionary title, but it is a good return to the roots of the game, and can well satisfy the old fans. Firefly studio learned from third-party mistakes and now is back in the right direction. Stronghold: Crusader 2 could be the starting point for this game.
No, it's not the world's best sequel - the amount of stuff added to this game in comparison to crusader 1 is minimal, which is sort of upsetting considering this game has come out 12 years after its' predecessor. However, I do not find my money wasted on this game. As a fan of the stronghold series and a proud owner of all the games (save one that I'm not too proud of...you can guess which), I will happily say that this game is the first stronghold game to not be a total waste of your time since 2002 with crusader 1 itself. On top of that, I highly recommend buying this if for nothing else than supporting the small indie studio Firefly Studios in hopes that, now without their 2K publisher forcing release dates on them, we can begin to see some proper sequels in the stronghold lineup to recover from...a troubling past, to say the least. Perhaps a stronghold 4, or even the possibility of a Legends 2 (Don't kill me, we all know somewhere inside we want a better legends :D) With gamespy down, this is also the only remaining stronghold game besides the abysmal pile that was stronghold 3 to have functional multiplayer without the assistance of a 3rd party tool that can sometimes, to inexperienced users, be a large pain to use properly. So for crusader multiplayer with ease, this runs through the steam servers allowing you to simply invite your friends and such as you would for Team Fortress 2 or something. Buy this to support firefly and enjoy the first stronghold game in 12 years to not suck right out of the box...or download in this case.
You know what wasn't so good? Stronghold 3. You know what is comparatively better? Stronghold Crusader 2. Be warned, there are a few 'day one' glitches and bugs, but nothing game breaking and unfixable like in SH3. As stated in other reviews, the game does feel a bit clunky as of now, but I believe these issues can be ironed out in the next week or two. Take note of the system specs, because my desktop meets the minimum but not the recommended and it's definitely noticeable. Assuming you have that, both die hard fans and ones new to the series won't be disappointed with the options to start with. Skirmish mode, (hooray!) multiple campaigns, and sandbox are all playable. I also like the new art style and updated graphics. Overall, it feels like an updated SH:C with more features, hopefully more to be added through DLC. (Additional units, both new and rebooted AI, all new campaigns, etc) In addition, the Arab lords no longer have to build churches; mosques have finally been added. A small thing, but really helps with the balance between Crusaders and Arabs. The game takes a different spin on how it approaches the Crusades, and now the 'right side' is whichever side you're fighting for. There's no 'good' side, as both sides view themselves as freedom fighters locked in a righteous struggle against the infidels. There is multiplayer, but I have not tested it yet, so take that with a grain of salt. I somewhat agree with the opinion that Firefly sacrificed some content for a more realistic game, but that is not nearly as off-putting here as it was in SH3. I'm excited to see where Firefly takes SH:C2, especially after the SH3 letdown, and hope to enjoy this game quite a bit in the future.
Stronghold Crusader 2 is a sequel to Stronghold Crusader 1 which is one of the best strategy games of all time. Unfortunately I am bit disappointed of this sequel because there are no much new elements in this game compared to the first which I think was released in 2002. Thus they had a lot of time since the first, but they didn't add much improvements. What is new in this game are, graphics, some characters and skirmish is OK. The game in it self is enjoyable, however, sometimes you will need to wait in lobby to find a multiplayer game. In general this is a good and much fun game, if you are a fan of strategy games then I recommend this for you.
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