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  1. 4 points
    Hello friends, and welcome to our 8th DevDiary for “Knights of Honor II: Sovereign”! This time we’re having our first deep dive into the music and audio of our game, a topic we’ve heard many of you are excited about. The composers of “Knights of Honor II: Sovereign” bid thee welcome! Yannick and Robin are from Audinity and, after having worked on many strategy video game titles in the past, are having a blast working on the sequel to one of their favorite childhood video games. In fact, the hours Robin spent in the medieval world of “Knights of Honor” exceed the 1000-hour mark and both still have the game installed in their Steam library to this day. So, with all this in mind, there has been a lot of discussion and eagerness on how to approach a game that is near and dear to both! First, after playing the development build, it was clear that a game of this scope and style would need some brainstorming on how to approach the soundtrack. Everyone sat down and brainstormed, working collaboratively from both the composer and developer side to form a concept and approach that everyone could get behind. This wasn’t just about finding the right tone, but also figuring out how to technically approach how we’d leverage music in the game. It may seem like an easy thing, but we assure you, there’s a lot of little details that make it quite complex. As you probably know from the previous DevDiaries, KoH2:S features various cultures. One of our primary goals is to write unique music for a variety of these cultures in the game. After all, playing as a Western European faction should feel and sound different than playing as an Arabian faction. We also wanted to find a tone that would feel very much like “Knights of Honor”, too, and spent lots of time listening to the old soundtrack and discussing with some of the original KoH team members how the music was developed back then. This led us down the route of devising different playlists for the major, unique cultures. These playlists feature authentic short tracks – which we call “snippets” – for creating the appropriate cultural mood as well as big orchestral signature tracks as musical accents. We want the players to feel the impact of their decisions to medieval Europe through the music, but we do not just want a plain ambient underscore, we also want the music to give direct feedback to certain gameplay elements. Just like the cultural direction of a region can change (think about the Reconquista of the Iberian Peninsula), the music can change as well in order to create a more adaptive music system that reflects some of these changes. So, if for example the Iberian Peninsula is partly Muslim and partly Christian, you might be able to hear music from both the Christian/European and the Muslim/Arabian playlists when you are in that region for a longer time. The musical changes will be quite subtle first and depending on how significant the cultural changes, the level of musical adaptation increases. If a European/Christian region gets conquered by Pagans, you might first hear one Pagan music track here and there. If the region remains Pagan for a while, more Pagan tracks can be added. This means that over time, the amount of “Christian/European” music in the playlist can decrease, just like the actual Christian/European influence in that region. We think this could be a cool way to have the music and culture work together and reflect how your decisions are impacting the world. In addition, we’re also experimenting with short tracks that can trigger based on certain impactful gameplay events to add musical feedback and support the mood. For example, if the Pope calls for a crusade, there may be a specific musical flourish to help build the atmosphere. Also, we want the music to react to the political situation and stability in your realm. If your people are rioting heavily or if several other nations declare war on you, you might be able to notice a change of music towards more tension tracks that indicate “woops, something is happening!” As most of you know, the game’s setting reflects the real world during the medieval era, where you create an alternative path forward based on your actions and decisions. You are the Sovereign, the medieval leader, and we want the music to support that mood as well. That’s why we want to feature many authentic traditional instruments in our score. In European/Christian tracks you can often hear the lute, viola da gamba, recorders and many more. We also plan to record an old zither that Yannick inherited from his grandmother! Arabian/Muslim regions will feature traditional instruments as well, like the Ney flute or Darbuka. To give the music a true historical vibe that fits the setting, we also plan to incorporate the famous “L’Homme Armé” (“The Armed Man”) melody, which is an actual authentic medieval tune fitting perfectly to the game’s theme. All the music samples you’re hearing in these clips are both works-in-progress and digital versions made with our computers. We’re excited to use both orchestra and featured traditional instruments in our music, and we’re planning to record with live musicians for the game, including some authentic soloists, which should be a real treat. That said, we didn’t want to wait until our recording sessions to give our fans a taste of the music, so hope you enjoy this preview, and can keep in mind that the final tracks will sound much much better! We will talk more on this topic in our DevStream on Thursday, July 9th, @ 3:00 PM GMT / 11:00 AM EST. The Twitch stream will be hosted on the THQ Nordic channel: http://twitch.tv/thqnordic. Not only will we be grabbing responses from this post, we’ll also be showing off more music, with some new footage, during the stream, so you won’t want to miss it! Of course, we want to produce the best soundtrack possible, both as music composers and as die-hard fans of “Knights of Honor.” We hope you’ve enjoyed this first sample of what we’ve been cooking up and would love to hear your opinions on how things are starting. Do you like the idea of music reflecting the culture of an area, or do you prefer having more direct control of the tracks that play? What are your thoughts on the first tracks? Do you have a specific track or melody from the first Knights of Honor that is really memorable to you, and why? We can’t wait to hear your feedback and write even more great music for you to enjoy. Until then, we bid thee farewell. Go forth and conquer!
  2. 3 points
    Hello friends, and welcome to our 8th DevDiary for “Knights of Honor II: Sovereign”! This time we’re having our first deep dive into the music and audio of our game, a topic we’ve heard many of you are excited about. The composers of “Knights of Honor II: Sovereign” bid thee welcome! Yannick and Robin are from Audinity and, after having worked on many strategy video game titles in the past, are having a blast working on the sequel to one of their favorite childhood video games. In fact, the hours Robin spent in the medieval world of “Knights of Honor” exceed the 1000-hour mark and both still have the game installed in their Steam library to this day. So, with all this in mind, there has been a lot of discussion and eagerness on how to approach a game that is near and dear to both! First, after playing the development build, it was clear that a game of this scope and style would need some brainstorming on how to approach the soundtrack. Everyone sat down and brainstormed, working collaboratively from both the composer and developer side to form a concept and approach that everyone could get behind. This wasn’t just about finding the right tone, but also figuring out how to technically approach how we’d leverage music in the game. It may seem like an easy thing, but we assure you, there’s a lot of little details that make it quite complex. As you probably know from the previous DevDiaries, KoH2:S features various cultures. One of our primary goals is to write unique music for a variety of these cultures in the game. After all, playing as a Western European faction should feel and sound different than playing as an Arabian faction. We also wanted to find a tone that would feel very much like “Knights of Honor”, too, and spent lots of time listening to the old soundtrack and discussing with some of the original KoH team members how the music was developed back then. This led us down the route of devising different playlists for the major, unique cultures. These playlists feature authentic short tracks – which we call “snippets” – for creating the appropriate cultural mood as well as big orchestral signature tracks as musical accents. We want the players to feel the impact of their decisions to medieval Europe through the music, but we do not just want a plain ambient underscore, we also want the music to give direct feedback to certain gameplay elements. Just like the cultural direction of a region can change (think about the Reconquista of the Iberian Peninsula), the music can change as well in order to create a more adaptive music system that reflects some of these changes. So, if for example the Iberian Peninsula is partly Muslim and partly Christian, you might be able to hear music from both the Christian/European and the Muslim/Arabian playlists when you are in that region for a longer time. The musical changes will be quite subtle first and depending on how significant the cultural changes, the level of musical adaptation increases. If a European/Christian region gets conquered by Pagans, you might first hear one Pagan music track here and there. If the region remains Pagan for a while, more Pagan tracks can be added. This means that over time, the amount of “Christian/European” music in the playlist can decrease, just like the actual Christian/European influence in that region. We think this could be a cool way to have the music and culture work together and reflect how your decisions are impacting the world. In addition, we’re also experimenting with short tracks that can trigger based on certain impactful gameplay events to add musical feedback and support the mood. For example, if the Pope calls for a crusade, there may be a specific musical flourish to help build the atmosphere. Also, we want the music to react to the political situation and stability in your realm. If your people are rioting heavily or if several other nations declare war on you, you might be able to notice a change of music towards more tension tracks that indicate “woops, something is happening!” As most of you know, the game’s setting reflects the real world during the medieval era, where you create an alternative path forward based on your actions and decisions. You are the Sovereign, the medieval leader, and we want the music to support that mood as well. That’s why we want to feature many authentic traditional instruments in our score. In European/Christian tracks you can often hear the lute, viola da gamba, recorders and many more. We also plan to record an old zither that Yannick inherited from his grandmother! Arabian/Muslim regions will feature traditional instruments as well, like the Ney flute or Darbuka. To give the music a true historical vibe that fits the setting, we also plan to incorporate the famous “L’Homme Armé” (“The Armed Man”) melody, which is an actual authentic medieval tune fitting perfectly to the game’s theme. All the music samples you’re hearing in these clips are both works-in-progress and digital versions made with our computers. We’re excited to use both orchestra and featured traditional instruments in our music, and we’re planning to record with live musicians for the game, including some authentic soloists, which should be a real treat. That said, we didn’t want to wait until our recording sessions to give our fans a taste of the music, so hope you enjoy this preview, and can keep in mind that the final tracks will sound much much better! We will talk more on this topic in our DevStream on Thursday, July 9th, @ 3:00 PM GMT / 11:00 AM EST. The Twitch stream will be hosted on the THQ Nordic channel: http://twitch.tv/thqnordic. Not only will we be grabbing responses from this post, we’ll also be showing off more music, with some new footage, during the stream, so you won’t want to miss it! Of course, we want to produce the best soundtrack possible, both as music composers and as die-hard fans of “Knights of Honor.” We hope you’ve enjoyed this first sample of what we’ve been cooking up and would love to hear your opinions on how things are starting. Do you like the idea of music reflecting the culture of an area, or do you prefer having more direct control of the tracks that play? What are your thoughts on the first tracks? Do you have a specific track or melody from the first Knights of Honor that is really memorable to you, and why? We can’t wait to hear your feedback and write even more great music for you to enjoy. Until then, we bid thee farewell. Go forth and conquer! View full article
  3. 2 points
    Great stuff, the first game had a fantastic, memorable soundtrack so it's good to see the team is looking at it when developing the music for the sequel. One thing KoH1 didn't get so right was the lack of musical variety for different cultures (there was some, but very limited) so I'm glad this is being improved in KoH2. I have some questions regarding some of the implementation details for the adaptive sound. The post seems to use religion and culture interchangably, so I'm a bit confused about how the different musical styles are going to be split. For example, are Italy, Spain and England going to have the different styles to the soundtrack, or will the soundtrack mainly focus on religious differences such as the given examples of Muslim, Pagan and Christian? Also wondering how the game determines what style of music to play - is it based on where you're looking at on the map, or where you're doing something actively or what? Finally - does this change in music also apply to the RTS-style battles? If so, how does this work? As an example, if I am an Arabic army fighting a European army and the battle is happening in the middle of some Pagan territory, which style of music would the game pick? As a final note, the post talks about players picking their playlist. In my opinion, both options could be available to players in the Settings, as I can see different people having different preferences in that regard. What could be cool though - since the game is also doing Multiplayer - would be to let players pick a theme or a dominant instrument etc. that other players in that MP session hear when they're in their territory. Thanks for all your hard work, guys! Looking forward to hearing/seeing more of the game and finally getting my hands on it when it's ready!
  4. 2 points
    Hello there Dear Devs, I have two simple questions about the music and sound in KoH 2, and here goes: Will you consider adding a Soundtrack DLC to the assets of the game, which will allow us to download and listen to the awesome music of the game? Perhaps in a Supporters' Edition of KoH 2? I would love to listen to the music of KoH 2 while I am at work. Listening to game music always motivates me to play more and more and to give my best in each game. It is a must have for me, as it also is a proven way to combat burnout. My second question is not about the music, but rather to the sound and voice acting: Will there be voice acting in the main menu and in-game, similar to the previous game, where the Narrator says lines like "The medieval world of Kinghts of Honor awaits you" or "You are leaving so soon?", when I press exit game. These lines were very special to me, as the voice actor was really good and indeed made me feel like a virtual Sovereign. For instance lines like "The king is dead, long live the king", or perhaps "Behold, the splendour of our army!" were really good for the immersion in the game. And of course, my favorite one, when I press exit game - "I shall await your return". I kinda really loved that guy! :) Those are my questions. I would really love to hear about the Soundtrack DLS, as I would love to support the musicians and to feel free to listen to their work. My favorite track from Knights of Honor was "Echo in Eternity". Thank you and keep up the good work! And stay healthy! Kind Regards!
  5. 2 points
    I would add a few things to the previous post from Field Marshal - Vassals to join their lord wars automatically / If vassal is attacked, the lord joins the war - After a war there is a truce between the participants - Breaking the truce could bring some serious penalties
  6. 2 points
    OK, I got a little bit hooked and did a search. What I was talking about was adding a non-steam game. Below is a guide for how to do that. However, it might not help you. It only adds the game to your library, but doesn't necessarily register it on steam. Maybe (!), if you are lucky , steam might recognise it as a steam game and it will allow you to download the digital version. Let me know if that works.
  7. 2 points
    My favorite nation has to be the Teutonic Knights. I just loved using the Teuton Knights and the Feudal Knights and they easily destroyed pretty much everything.
  8. 2 points
    Pretty much what it says in the title - I am wondering if KoH2 will have Bulgarian language support. I know KoH1 did not and Bulgarian is not language that is often supported in games, but given the fact that it's a Bulgarian dev studio working on the title, I think it would be nice to have it. I see on the Steam page that it is not listed among the supported languages, so I expect the answer to my question is "no" but I figured it's still worth asking. I've always wanted to introduce my father to KoH since he's a big strategy fan - he really enjoyed Tzar (the in-game rendition of "Откога се е, мила моя майно льо" is a favourite of his from the soundtrack 😉), which I know some of the devs working on KoH2 are behind - but you need to be able to understand diplomatic messages etc. and he doesn't speak English well, which essentially makes the game unplayable for him. And I suspect many others would benefit from a Bulgarian translation as well.
  9. 2 points
    Sorry I was a bit late to the posting. My question is: Is it possible for the rebels to not only form new kingdoms and join existing ones but to maybe start some sort of political, social or cultural revolution? I am of course making an homage to the French and English Revolutions. But it could be very fun to see huge rebellious armies taking control of the kingdom and radically changing a bunch of laws or the equivalent. P.S I am very impressed with the development aim on making rebellions more engaging and interesting compared to the first game. This sounds like it will make a great improvement over the first. EXCITED !!!!
  10. 1 point
    Albanien is a Good Island because there are to Religions and the people live in freedom and its a small Country too. The strategy of this cobination is a Good idea because I read in the Dev Diarys 6 i Think about the differnt coulturs and than we caputre maybe as Christian a Islam Kingdom there could be more rebelions as maybe in Albania only a idea what was in my mind my community wish to see like in crusaider please make it possible in Love Albania in Year 1300 --> klick the link https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albania_in_the_Middle_Ages Master Seb
  11. 1 point
    Everybody knows the ottomans era and nobody couldt stop them all balkan Islands were captured by the ottomans only Albania and the King of Albania Gjerjg Kastrioti Skenderbeg stoped the ottomans about many times with an Half troops or less as the ottomans came at least with 100K troops and the Albanians only had 20K troops and won the battle about more than 50K ottomans were killed in the battles and only 10K Albaniens that is awesome and very important for the history of balkan there somebody was to suround and bring Freedom to Balkan. Please there are more about than 15Mil Albaniens around the world and they would love too see this and become a Part of this Game like me I Jones new and wish to be a Part here.
  12. 1 point
    Game tech goes till ~1350, pretty much nobody in europe at that time had any gunpowder weapons and I presonally wouldn't even like to see them bacause I want medieval game with "knights and archers" instead of "cannons and guns"
  13. 1 point
    My 2 cents on this: Allow it but make an option that this techncology can not be developed, for those who don't want gunpowder weapons in their "late game".
  14. 1 point
    This is going to be awesome.
  15. 1 point
    All of these dev diaries bring back so many, fond memories of playing the first KoH 😊 On that note, I also do remember it being quite frustrating to only being able to appoint a couple of knights, agreeing with @Taha. In most games I would have loved to have more, especially towards the end. But then again I also do think that this limitation made things more interesting and challenging. It gave me the need to make important and high-impact decisions while also keeping the complexity low. If memory serves right (I really need to play KoH1 again), I already spend a good portion of the later game in pause mode to manage everything and more knights would only increase that need. I love KoH for it's simplicity and real-time mechanics though and hate to see those go in favour of more knights. Feels like there are interesting discussions and reveals in front of us 😁
  16. 1 point
    I remember reading about modding tools so we'll surely have some mods to have a very detailed and complex game with certain mods if the community is active and big enough when the game comes out.
  17. 1 point
    Will it be possible for us to pre-order ? I would love to pre-order just to support this whole project as mere existence of this game is a dream come true for me.
  18. 1 point
    I normaly do not preorder games anymore, but I make exceptions, if a game has earned my trust. And Knights of Honor II would be such. I was with the first KOH community, I had the luck to be invited for a "Closed Beta". Nor the version I tested of the final product disappointed, so it would be weird if KOH 2 would disappoint ! So beside testing, I would support the development with a preorder 🙂
  19. 1 point
    I am a fan of that idea, but I learned that such features are not easy to implement, especially if they also should affect the gameplay. But if Mods will be as well supported as announced, maybe a modder can add such a feature?
  20. 1 point
    That's the risk. Happened in the real world, should happen in game. Would be really fun to see the general I worked so hard to upgrade suddenly turn on me. Ungrateful-----! lol
  21. 1 point
    Welcome to the new home for the Knights of Honor community! We've been hard at working setting up this community hub where we can come together and chat about all things Knights of Honor. This is where we'll be posting regular DevDiaries about the game, giving you insights into the development process and exclusive first looks into the specifics of Knights of Honor II: Sovereign. We also want this to be YOUR community, a place where you can discuss everything from games to history. We know that KoH fans are a passionate group of people and we're eager to join in on the conversation. So settle in and get to know each other. Be good to one another, engage in enlightening conversation, and help us create the best game we possibly can. Gaming communities are special, and we can't wait to see how this one comes together! View full article
  22. 1 point
    Yeah I bet that there will be speedrunners if the game gets popular whenever It's released.
  23. 1 point
    We wish our forums to be a place for everyone to be able to have an open discussion about our game and to make sure of this we added a few guidelines. Respect for fellow community members. Any and all feedback is welcome just be civil about it. Do not beg devs for favors. While our game contains quite a lot about religion as well as politics we ask that you keep these subjects game or game-era related. Make sure to keep your posts on topic. No spam/flooding. No advertising. No adult content. Always listen to admins/mods. All rules can be altered and changed during the course of the forums if it is needed, we will make sure you are informed if such happens. So welcome to our forums and we hope you enjoy your stay.
  24. 1 point
    It would surely be a dream come true to test this game for all of us. I hope they'll recruit people for closed beta testing sometime.
  25. 1 point
    It's usually because things tend to get a bit messy during downloading or installation. I'm glad that you've fixed your game.
  26. 1 point
    I don't think that It's possible for you to swap your game from physical CD to the virtual Steam platform. I've never even heard of such a feature before.
  27. 1 point
    It's very nice of you to include minor cultures as well. I wonder if these minor cultures will have their own mechanics or units.
  28. 1 point
    These are some amazing ideas and I bet they'll take these suggestions.
  29. 1 point
    I truly feel that I'm late to the party, as I've missed many events and dev diaries and I wasn't aware that this community existed but I'll surely try my best to be active as possible.
  30. 1 point
    Will we get to have our own signatures on the forum ?
  31. 1 point
    I'd say that the game will end before the Renaissance Era, or right before the colonizations efforts so we won't really see more than late-medieval Eras. I assume that we won't have more than some Cannon units and maybe even a few Arquebusiers.
  32. 1 point
    It would surely be nice to have Pretty looking models for cities and I would love to see it however I do not think that there were many cities with unique architecture such as Rome and Constantinople. But I think that If it exists in game, It would be lovely to see models such as Charlemagne's Palace in Aachen.
  33. 1 point
    Was kinda dissapointed by the models in the last game. Also well we have more cities in provences like Adrianople, Iconium, Drackhium, Dorelium, Athens and Sparta and so on.
  34. 1 point
    I think it would be awesome to have an entire nation designer, just like the one in Europa Universalis IV or Crusader Kings II but it could be even more detailed where we would select a culture for the country, ruler, royal family, design a coat of arms and many other things. It would certainly be lovely.
  35. 1 point
    To tell you the truth, I'd rather have them take their time with the developement. Because I'd rather have a delayed game. I don't want Knights of Honor II Sovereign to be a buggy mess. I honestly think that It's good for them to take their time and implement the game as It's meant to be.
  36. 1 point
    Name/Handle: Æterna Tristitia (lit. Eternal Sorrow) Country: I'd rather remain anonymous. Games I'd like to play: I only play Roleplaying Games and Strategy games. To tell you the truth, I'm excited beyond measure for Knights of Honor II because it was actually one of the first computer games I've ever played. Pets: I used to have a lovely Parrot 15 years ago, I liked her very much and she had a peaceful life but she just got too old and passed away. Ever since her death, I didn't really have much time for another pet.
  37. 1 point
    Hi Everyone! I am a huge fan of KOH and I probably have a couple of thousand hours spent on this game. I don't think there was a year in my life that I played less than 50 hours of KOH and I used to be so obsessed with it back when I was young guy that I did not sleep all night, taking over kingdoms. I have to say, I have a couple of ideas on improvements. So, as I came here today to write, I noticed Falkeep has already said all I wanted to say and even more! Respect! I am just going to say that I fully agree with Falkeep's opinion - it is obvious he played for many hours. Additionally, I double-agree with his suggestions on Diplomacy, which I also find frustratingly weak. Like seriously, I am Trnovo for example, and I am working hard to make alliance with both Greece and Romania and then Romania announces war to Greece without any consideration of the ALL THE COIN I spent to forge this alliance!!!! Seriously guys, consider making it a lot more detailed - I am the type of player who does not play the battles and am sure I would not play them all the time on the new graphics as well. Honestly, in KOH 1 you can never become huge and powerful by politics - you need to be taking over by brute force. Also, you can never negotiate with rebels - in reality, a king would firstly try to offer some cash, or make some changes to the province so they surrender peacefully, however in KOH you must completely destroy them 😄 I want to have the option to forge unions, have spy networks, make cool cities and create prosperous economies, not simply get rich, get 6 knights and take over Europe 😄 Also, I want to have actual indirect influence over some neighbors, maybe be able to fund a contestant to the monarch in the country near me, etc. This used to be done all the time in history - even khan Tervel was funding Justinian II against Leonitus and Tiberius III and once Justinian II got on the throne, Tervel got himself some sweet, sweet coin, titles and other benefits 😄 Regards and thank you for all the efforts that go into KOH1 and KOH2! This really became a classic game, it aged beautifully and I hope KOH2 would do justice to the greatness of 1 ! Cheers Falkeep, Best!
  38. 1 point
  39. 1 point
    Hello friends, and welcome to the sixth entry of the “Knights of Honor II: Sovereign” DevDiaries! Today’s topic is all about the cultures in KoH2:S and how we weaved their historical representation into the gameplay and visuals of the game. When we talk about cultures, there is one really important thing to keep in mind. Diversity. We live in a world with a rich variety of cultures, every one of which has its own specific histories, songs, food and even mannerisms. All this is valid for the Middle ages as well and thus it became the foundation of how cultures work in KoH2:S. We dived deep into historical sources so that the various regions of our map reflected the cultures that thrived there during the Middle ages. We didn’t just stop with the big cultures like Arabic, or Nordic and the state of “there were Berbers in Northern Africa,” but were aiming to include unique tribes of certain regions too – the Sanhaja, Zenata, Tuareg – the “small” cultures the compose the big, widely known, cultural groups. Same goes for the European cultures – yes, there are the French, but also the Occitans, the Normans, and other cultures that are classified in the Latin group. Mirroring this rich cultural landscape in KoH2:S naturally adds another layer of gameplay depth in the game. Just as in the original, it’s not enough to conquer territories to “paint the map”. Your army might physically occupy a territory, but the people may not be loyal to you yet. They could riot, they could resist. One occupied province might bleed your kingdom dry in the wrong circumstances – from your armies, to your economy. Here our cultural spread system comes into play. It’s based on how civilization’s culture evolves, diversifies and disappears throughout history. This was mostly a slow and continuous process, but sometimes it could’ve been forceful – with one culture assimilating another with stark change in the population’s lifestyle (like religious conversion). In KoH2:S, this process works like this: the culture of one province or kingdom is constantly affecting its neighbouring provinces. More provinces with the same culture all bordering one province with different culture have a greater conversion influence, meaning this province could be ripe for conquering by providing less problems when assimilating it into your kingdom. There are some ground rules to that, of course. Cultures from the same group influence each other easier, while those from different ones have a hard time taking over one another. For example, you can play through the historical cultural tensions on the Iberian Peninsula – both before and after the Reconquista, depending on which period you choose at start. If a Catalan king decides to conquer a Castilian province, the closely related cultures will allow for smoother conquest in that aspect. Matters would be even easier if the player made an effort to expand his kingdom’s influence to those particular neighbors by taking advantage of the other tools we prepared for faster cultural conversion (more on that in a future DevDiary), but the Andalusians will have a hard time spreading their influence over the Catalans, and vice versa, even if the territories held by them are bigger, better, stronger. Cultures play a noticeable role when it comes to visuals as well. Castles, cities, clothes – we’re trying our best to have each rooted in the respective culture of their region. There is a delicate balance when creating these elements though, one between the rich cultural diversity of the Medieval World and the amount of historical visual data available for the different cultures we’re exploring, some of which is quite limited. We often felt pulled between two choices: choice A, to fully capture the visual nuance of all well documented cultures, leaving a number of cultures with less than ideal visualization, bordering on Narnia, and not history, or choice B, to compile known elements from cultures in a major cultural group in order to achieve combined a visual style that would be most appropriate. We choose the latter. In KoH2:S, you can see the iconic castles of Western Europe and also the traditional wooden Stave Churches of the freshly Christianized Nordic lands. The European queens are admiring their tiaras, while the Arabic malikas are putting on their beautiful hijabs. We aimed for equal representation for each culture as much as possible, keeping in mind what the player actually sees most of the time. There is less emphasis on the so called “ambient life” (villagers, region specific animals, flying fish), although there are some unique aspects there as well, and more on what’s really important, like the armies. We wanted each cultural group to field distinctive units when possible – both from a visual and a gameplay standpoint - to ensure the lasting feeling of “Yes, I am a Nordic king and this is my fearsome Nordic army”. The Europeans have their heavier armors, while the Steppe armies are relying on equipment that doesn’t hinder their superior swiftness. The real sight to behold, however, are the special units like the Mongol heavy lancers riding against the Novgorodian Boyars, or Camel riders walking the sands of North Africa, side by side with the Mamluk cavalry. Riding at the front of each army is the Marshal, whose model we’re pushing to be the most iconic of them all. Another crucial piece of visual information we wanted to get just right was accurate names and nobility titles for each cultural group, so the Royal court had a genuine feel to it. For each culture we filled pools with names, sometimes numbering in the thousands, and the majority of which belonged to real medieval people. Naturally, we wanted to emphasize this even further and what better way to do that than to include starting real-life dynasties. We went over mountains of data in order to put the rightful king, queen and their offspring on their respective thrones as best we could for each of the game periods. We even tried to find how Dobrotitsa’s wife was called, and where historical sources failed us (like in the case of Dobrotitsa), we left it to chance and those huge pools of names. We are pretty sure that the Doge of Venice won’t ever be called Tvrtko, as long as the republic keeps its original culture. All this work is really oriented towards one goal - to immerse you in the medieval setting of KoH2 through the unique cultures of that time. We hope you enjoy it, and have a great time playing in this unique era the way you want to, in a backdrop that is immersive and engaging. We will talk more on this topic in our DevStream on Thursday, May 7th, @ 3:00 PM GMT / 11:00 AM EST. The Twitch stream will be hosted on the THQ Nordic channel: http://twitch.tv/thqnordic and we’ll be grabbing responses from this post as well as answering questions live during the stream. We really want to hear your thoughts, as cultures are a defining element of the KoH2:S’s experience and we want to make them the best they can be. Jump right into the discussion and share your thoughts in this thread, or join our Facebook and Discord channels and talk there too. Would you take your time to strategically influence provinces with your kingdom’s culture before conquering them, or would you crush the resistance with brute force? Would you accept a different culture overtaking your own just to get its unique special units? Would you pick a starting kingdom based on its culture because of the special visuals and cultural perks that come with it, or do these aspects not really factor into your decisions? Your feedback is critically important, as you never know what comments may help us build the best KoH2:S Culture feature set we can!
  40. 1 point
    Count me in, too! I want the sequel to be even more amazing than the first game. 😄
  41. 1 point
    I did not play a good strategy for a long time. Please let me help you in alfa if you need it!
  42. 1 point
    Would love to do that. I have some experience with Battlefleet Gothic: Armada 1&2, Hearts of Iron 4, the Battlefield games and World of Warships as either beta or alpha tester. Also 900hrs on CK2 and overall around 3000hrs on M2:TW, not to mention various other games in this setting or with this kind of gameplay. To my shame, never played KoH1 though...😱
  43. 1 point
    Name/Handle: Abdulkadir Country: Turkey Games I like to play: I haven't played too many strategy games. The first and only strategy game I played is Knights of honor. I started this game many years ago with the suggestion of a friend. We played for a long time with almost all of my classmates. When I saw that the second came out today, I had a strange sadness and joy. All I can say is let's play as soon as possible. Pets: none
  44. 1 point
    Hello friends, and welcome to our second “Knights of Honor II: Sovereign” DevDiary! Today we’re going to take a look at the world of KoH2:S. One of the very first steps for us was to choose the time period our game takes place in. Setting the rough boundaries was rather easy, considering this was something we definitely wanted to preserve from the first game. We could hardly pick a more appropriate period than High and Late Middle Ages for a game with that title, right? These were the glorious days of knights, central to the KoH series, and everything that goes with them – epic battles and sieges, crusades, intricate diplomacy, court intrigues, and clashes between kingdoms, cultures and religions all over Europe and the Old World! Within that period, allowing players to choose from several starting points in time seemed like a good feature. After all, we had this 15 years ago and variety in game settings and modes has only become more important for gamers since then. This allows us to add more interesting setups for conflicts and give the players more options to take control of a wider variety of kingdoms. One of many examples is the choice between Byzantium or the Latin empire we would have to make if we had just one starting setup, since the second one emerged from the ashes of the first – and we wouldn’t like to exclude either of them from the game. So, after making a thorough research pass, we chose three starting points in which the historical maps looked most interesting to us – the beginning of the 12th century, the 20s of the 13th century and the middle of the 14th. Only the first of those differs significantly from the starting points in the first game, but it seemed extremely appealing to make the change, what with the tension between Christians and the Baltic and Finnish pagans, the Crusader states in the Holy Lands, the fragile balance of power on the Iberian Peninsula, the massive strength of Byzantium and the Holy Roman Empire, and many others. Since we realized there can never be a definitive answer to the question “which is the most interesting moment in the Middle Ages”, and since there are players who like to get creative and set up their own starting conditions, we are doing our best to provide some options to customize their experience, especially through mods. Modders will be able to change the political scenery and define which kingdoms participate, what provinces they control, what religions they follow, who are their rulers and so on. Whether the players like to recreate a specific historical time period or devise a fantasy Europe with House Lannister or Mordor in it, it will be up to them. Elaborate modding possibilities proved to be quite fun for many in the first game, so we plan to give even more control for your ideas and imagination in KoH2:S. Choosing how big the map will be and what territories to include was an entirely different and more significant challenge, since the map size impacts not only the overall feel of the game, but the gameplay as well. One of the things we felt we might improve from the first game was including Arabia, in order to provide a more complete picture of the Old World and make it fun to play with Islamic kingdoms. Thus, we stretched the map to the east and a bit to the south so that Arabian cities with great significance, like Mecca, Medina and Baghdad, are included in our game world. At some places we “cheated” the geography a bit for the sake of gameplay, which is the number one priority for us. For example, we enlarged Rhodes so we had enough space to place the city and some settlements, since it was a historically important landmark and we wanted it to be part of the game. Another example is the decision to slightly shrink the Arabian Peninsula, so that the map does not stretch too far east or south, opening vast empty spaces. After all, Africa was called the “Dark Continent” at that time because too little was known about the area and it wouldn’t make too much sense to have a lot of playable provinces there, nor would it be fun to conquer the barely inhabited, but immense, Sahara Desert. Almost the same goes for the north-eastern parts of the North European Plains. Since it is hard to estimate which world size and province count would provide the best experience prior to testing the game in its entirety, we initially left the question open. We really wanted to fine tune and iterate on the map several times. We even asked for our community’s opinion on the topic through a somewhat hidden way, by asking a general question in a Facebook post early last year. To remain agile and alter the map throughout development, we invested a lot of time in making a proper map-creation kit. One cool example is an automation tool that generating borders between provinces automatically, based on settlements and terrain features like mountains and rivers. We were very pleased to see how well it worked on most places. Here is one example – Trebizond, entirely auto-generated: The actual territory of the Kingdom: (Source: https://en.wikipedia.org) In our social media channels, many people ask what the size of provinces are. To be honest, there really isn’t an exact answer to this question. In densely populated regions they are smaller, and vice versa – there are some pretty large provinces in Sahara and the lands furthest to the north. Larger territories are harder to conquer, since armies will need more time to reach their targets, but due to the same reason, these territories are harder to defend. It is not only the size of a province that matters, though, but also its settlements and the resources that can be found in it. A smaller province can sometimes be richer in all aspects than a larger one. We wanted to share a few words regarding the historical accuracy, as well. We’ve put quite some effort this time around to improve here, as we know there were some mistakes in the first game. For example, there were some cities in the original KoH which did not exist in the corresponding time period. While our game is more a fun sandbox than a history lesson, we know it can be an immersive experience to rewrite history from a more accurate starting point. This task is quite hard, since some territories were in very complex states of rulership, and little is known for others. Even historians argue over territorial specifics, but we can say we’ve done our best and surely those who care about that side of the game will be able to see the difference. We hope we’ve managed to answer some of your questions about the game world of KoH2:S. If you want to learn more, join our DevStream on this topic on Thursday, January 9th, @ 3:00 PM GMT / 10:00 AM EST. The Twitch stream will be hosted on the THQ Nordic channel: http://twitch.tv/thqnordic and we’ll be grabbing responses from this post as well as answering questions live during the stream. So, jump right into the discussion and share your thoughts in this thread, or join our Facebook and Discord channels and talk there too. We’d be glad to hear what is your “perfect” moment in the medieval history of Europe, what Kingdoms you want to lead or oppose, and what are your preferences of the game world size and province count. Next time we will dive deeper into the heart of the game and talk about the Royal Court – the King and his trusted knights. Until then, we bid thee farewell. Go forth and conquer!
  45. 1 point
    Hello friends, and welcome to the third entry of the “Knights of Honor II: Sovereign” DevDiaries! In this one we will take a look at one of the most emblematic features for the KoH series – the royal court. We love both the atmosphere it creates and the “deck-building” element it adds to the gameplay. The royal court plays a fundamental role in our game, thus it’s not much of a coincidence our teaser trailer had the concept front and center! With this feature we are not trying to make a realistic depiction of medieval rulership. Think more of the famed King Arthur’s Round Table – the king is the central, most important figure, and by his side stand the most capable and trustworthy knights. Dynasties and the royal family also play an important role, but we’ll tell you more about the royal family in a future DevDiary. For now, let’s focus on the knights. The royal court consists of the king, who is now always a member of your court (unlike in the previous game), and up to 8 more knights, which you can recruit during the course of the game. Each knight has a class, which defines his strengths and abilities and thus they play a completely different role: Marshals: These are the most efficient army leaders and they are good at solving matters in one way only – by force. Marshals can lead bigger armies compared to other classes and usually focus on skills that improve their troop’s capabilities in battle. Merchants: Building, development, diplomacy, espionage and war – besides other things, they all require a lot of gold. Merchants are the best knights to take care of this need by exploring profitable trade opportunities with other kingdoms. Diplomats: Regardless the strength of a kingdom, it needs allies to ensure its safety and to prevail against strong enemy factions. Diplomats’ function is to make important friends and help bury the hatchet of war with enemies, before all Hell breaks loose. Spies: The usage of cunning spies is more of an offensive function. They can infiltrate enemy kingdoms, corrupt and build networks of puppets in their royal courts, and then create chaos. Kingdoms can shatter from within as a result of their actions. Clerics: A strong clergy improves the stability of the crown and calms the people, halting the spread of heresy and foreign religious influences. Clerics are also the ones to keep and protect the ancestral knowledge and wisdom. In the first game there were also Builders and Farmers, but since these turned out to be underused, we decided to skip them and instead focus on a smaller, but significant, number of classes. For example, a new feature for knights is the ability for each knight to be appointed as governor of a province, making that province become part of the Royal Lands. This increases the benefits your kingdom receives from a province and is another area where a knight’s class can play a role – different knights boost different aspects of a province, e.g. gold income and production, defensive capabilities, etc. We will share more details of the classes in upcoming DevDiaries where we have time to dig deep into their unique features. Of course, all that aid doesn’t come for free – knight wages are certainly not trivial. Players should also be careful with their actions and keep the crown authority high. Who knows what disasters might befall a kingdom whose knights lose trust in the rulership of their king and decide to serve another…? With the choice and usage of knights, players open up different possibilities to craft and shape the strategies of their kingdoms to fit their playstyles. Whether you like to overwhelm your enemies with a dreadful army, destabilize their kingdoms through espionage, influence them culturally and wait for their rulers to beg themselves for your wise rulership, or buy your way to victory with economic dominance over Europe – it is all up to you. We’re trying to make the number of combinations and different ways you can leverage your Royal Court quite expansive, and we’re excited to see how players try different strategies with the tools at their fingertips. We will talk more on this topic in our DevStream on Thursday, February 6th, @ 3:00 PM GMT / 10:00 AM EST. The Twitch stream will be hosted on the THQ Nordic channel: http://twitch.tv/thqnordic and we’ll be grabbing responses from this post as well as answering questions live during the stream. So, jump right into the discussion and share your thoughts in this thread, or join our Facebook and Discord channels and talk there too. Do you find royal court management interesting and challenging? What were your favorite knight strategies and combinations from the first game? Share with us what is your preferred playstyle in grand strategies and what features you find most enjoyable. Next time we will focus more on the art of war – Marshals and armies. Until then, we bid thee farewell. Go forth and conquer!
  46. 1 point
    Hello Zdenek 🙂 I´m Pavel and I´m from CR too 😄 I love KOH like you and played some mods from you i think 🙂
  47. 1 point
    Hi @zooid (and others), thank you a lot! You are already supporting us a lot by being such a great community. You can't imagine how people in the office are smiling each time we post something on Facebook (for example), and they see the 'love' of KoH fans ... this is extremely motivating feeling! Of course, at some point we will start involving more and more people from the community in tests, etc,, to help us finish the game and give it the needed "punch" 🙂 ...
  48. 1 point
    My name is Sławek Im from Poland I like medieval game like Mount&Blade, Knight of Honor, Tzar, Settlers, Pretorians, Might of Magic and others like that, also I like sneaky games like Dishonored or pirate game like AC4 Black Flag. I dont have any pets but im thinking about buying raccoon or cat, we shall see 🙂
  49. 1 point
    Name/Handle? Gnowmickly Which Country State are you from? Sarawak, somewhere at Southeast Asia What kinds of games do you like to play? Currently playing MapleStory Do you have any pets? Used to have a cat but not anymore
  50. 1 point
    Name: Field Marshal Country: Croatia Games I like to play: from RTS: Knights of Honor, Europa Universalis IV, Hearts of Iron IV, Stronghold series (I, Crusader and Legends being my favs), Blitzkrieg II, Spore; from RPG: Gothic I, II and III, Risen I and III, The Witcher 3; from Platformers: Jak I, II and III, Daxter, Spyro games, Crash Bandicoot, Rayman (1, 2, 3, Origins and Legends) Pets: One lazy german shepherd
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