Feudal Fingerpainting: Mount&Blade 2’s Level Editor

Here's one I made earlier.

Our last post about Mount&Blade II: Bannerlord was one year and four days ago. That won’t do at all. Oh look, here’s a new video from developers TaleWorlds showing off some of the game’s engine and its level editor. That’s the level editor we hoi polloi will get to use too, creating our own huge landscapes and castles for sandbox feudal fun. It supports that pleasant MS Paint-style sweepy-draggy landscaping creation style, among other techniques, so even my crack at making a majestic forest might not end up looking like a foolish child’s paint-splattered macaroni art.

Looking over the past year of dev blog posts, we also discover that the warring factions have a little more backstory in the sequel, siege battles are expanded, TaleWorlds are big on animation, hair is hairier, and people now have not only the faces of Eastenders comic relief characters but their emotional range too. And that’s it. That’s one year of development summed up for you.

TaleWorlds still haven’t said when they’ll be releasing M&B 2, the rotten teases. We haven’t even had a proper look at the game, so it’s probably a fair way off. Still, talk in this video of planning the new engine to support larger maps and “bigger, more complex battles” is encouraging. Have a watch:


  1. Stijn says:

    Looks very nice. I can’t help but compare this with Bethesda’s Elder Scrolls modding tools – I hope Bethesda takes some pointers from this stuff, because it seems very powerful and user-friendly.

  2. Coops07 says:

    Been waiting for this game since before Star Citizen was even a thing.

  3. BTAxis says:

    One wonders, when they say “bigger battles”, are we talking Total War scale battles? I don’t really expect so, but that would be impressive.

    • TC-27 says:

      You can mod the original game to have bigger battles – I think I got to about 500 before the performance got noticeably slow.

      And yes it was epic even with only those numbers (not having a gods eye view makes 500 men seem like a big battle).

      • Universal Quitter says:

        It just occurred to me that the last time I used the Battle Resizer, I had a GTS 250 and a Core 2 Duo, and even that got me up to 250-300 on each side. Must…test…limits…of i7…

  4. gadalia says:

    I can already see all the Song of Ice and Fire mods for this.

  5. GrosData says:

    I’m so glad M&B 2 is a thing.

    • Humble_Beest says:

      Me too! I had no idea this existed until I saw it here on RPS. Warband was a good time.

  6. captain lust says:

    Voice from the video checking in here to say hi and thanks for sharing this update!

  7. lurkalisk says:

    I can’t wait for the deliberate ultra-low difficulty prancing about alone while chaste by an army (slowly eroding their numbers with a bow) in a NEW AND SHINY environ.

    What is said above may sound rather sarcastic, or at least tongue-in-cheek. I’m being quite serious. It is an indescribably wonderful thing.

    • Joriath says:

      One of those instances where a typo changes the entire meaning of a sentence. I assume you meant chased, though a prancing chaste leader of an army isn’t inconceivable either.

      • OJ287 says:

        Prancing about while bowing, eroding their numbers as they desert. It sounds like M&B2 will give us new ways to roleplay Total War commanders.

  8. Shockeh says:

    I was actually blown away by how good this looks – From someone who generally stopped paying attention to mapping & content creation circa Half-Life 2, this is truly impressive, beautiful stuff. I wouldn’t really have given the game a look before, and this has certainly worked, so I’d say the video is an immediate success for that alone.

  9. MattMk1 says:

    Very pretty, but that has nothing to do with why I keep on coming back to Warband every few months, and then lose interest after an evening of play.

    I often wonder what percentage of people that played Warband were ever successful in “winning” the game. The game gets so amazingly clunky once you’re past the stage of running around with 3 or 4 dozen troops and want to try war, managing your fief, politics, etc. that while I realize it must be possible, I don’t think I can imagine the effort and tedium involved. Especially on a “realistic” difficulty where the smart thing to do is to sit back in battle (sieges in particular) so you don’t get caught in a traffic jam of NPCs impossible for a human to deal with and get knocked out.

    • Great Cthulhu says:

      1.3%, according to the Steam achievements.

      I did it myself, with damage set to the same as npcs. (By default you take less damage than npcs would.) I honestly enjoyed it a lot. As soon as you have a good horse, decent armor, and quality troops, battles are perfectly survivable without hanging back. Just make sure to attack from the flanks, avoid crowds, etc. Siege assaults should be left to the troops though. Best you can do there is snipe from the back.

      • MattMk1 says:

        How long did that take?

        I’m not saying the battles are the big issue – they’re actually by far the most fun, warts and all. I just find that, after a point, they don’t really make up for trying to play a strategy game of sorts using what’s basically a rather poor text-based interface.

        I love the idea of Warband, I just never feel like it loves me back. ;) And I still have something like… 180 hours played?

        • Great Cthulhu says:

          Heh. Quite long to be honest. Those 180 hours sound about right. :)

          Fair enough about the interface for the strategy bits. For me it’s serviceable and fun, but I can’t deny that it has room for improvement.

  10. Vagrant says:

    I hope someone on their team has played Romance of the 3 Kingdoms by the time this game comes out (especially person-level Rot3K ones like VIII). I love Mount & Blade, but their kingdom management could really become amazing with that style of gameplay added in.

  11. jasta85 says:

    Mount and Blade Warband is one of my favorite games of all time, I have over 260 hours on it on steam, and I keep going back to it every several months to see what new mods have come out that I can jump into.

    I love the idea of M&B 2 but I really hope they don’t spend all their time on graphics and forget about the game mechanics, as those are what really made the game great. the graphics quality in the first game were crap but the amazing battles, kingdom building and freedom to roam the world and manipulate world events were what made me love it. I would be perfectly happy with just small graphical update so long as they made the mechanics deeper and better.

  12. Skaz says:

    Noooo I want to keep my “social” life, don’t take it away from me… again !

  13. MajorManiac says:

    This is at the top of my to-buy list.

    Some mods suffer from only having a small number of maps to fight in. Which can become very repetitive. So the idea of giving modders the tools make maps a lot faster is a brilliant idea. I wonder if they’ll also add an in-game random map generator?

  14. Pandemic says:

    Just hoping they add multiplayer for the campaign mode, imagine if your companions are player characters or separate armies with their own agendas… fun times!

  15. LordDamien says:

    This does looks incredibly nice, but I’m still a bit worried about covering M&B weaknesses:

    – Battles were great, from slowly killing small numbers of pirates with my bow, to commanding large armies and applying strategies, and fighting nobles.
    – The fighting mechanism was also great. Why there aren’t more games that allow you to choose the strike direction?
    – The map was a living thing. Serfs selling cattle between villages and running from slavers, castles being sieged by horselords, cities increasing and decreasing by numbers, changing between rulers, etc..
    – Almost absolute freedom: Be whom you want to be, kill whom you want to kill, betray, conquer..
    – Some great animations from horses and people falling down from them after being converted in a needle cushion with arrows. Also trampling never got old.

    – The conversation method was ugly, and content was dull as possible.
    – While graphics were decent, specially armors, faces looked very bland, like test dummies.
    – Too many quests of medieval pony-express.
    – A very large map with too little content. Warband improved this by creating different maps for each city, but still they looked and acted very similar.
    – Interacting with nobles was lacking a lot of content, specially wedding someone. Still a great idea to expand the game.
    – Options to do things besides battling and bartering were very scarce. Owning a city or town really didn’t allow much choices.

    What I would like in M&B2:

    – A system alike DF, that creates lore and gives content to the game, makes it interesting to play through, adds depth.
    – Possibly a bit better AI director, that controls events to spice up things, or give the player a break, while creating an interesting story.
    – Conversation system doesn’t require fancy things like voice over, with the content provided by the lore generator, use a system practical and with options.