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Castle-building RTS Stronghold returning with new campaign in this year's remaster

Stronghold: Definitive Edition marches out November 7th

A castle under siege in a screenshot from Stronghold Definitive Edition
Image credit: FireFly Studios

2001's Stronghold was a mediaeval real-time strategy game about constructing and destroying beautiful castles. Series developer Firefly Studios are now putting out the game's second re-release with Stronghold: Definitive Edition, releasing on November 7th.

The even newer edition features the original game's two campaigns alongside a new one designed by studio co-founders Simon Bradbury and Eric Ouellette. The fresh campaign takes us across the "devastated English hinterland," while presumably doing what you'd expect from the series: gathering resources, managing your economy, building stuff, and waging war. Here's our first look:

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Striking before and after transitions aside, what else is new? Long-time series composer Robert L. Euvino is back to remaster the soundtrack, alongside returning voice talent and a refreshed look made "using the source artwork."

Firefly Studios previously revamped the castle sim as Stronghold HD in 2012. That update focused on features like support for higher screen resolutions and modern operating systems, rather than reworking art and adding new missions and whatnot. The existence of that refresh does mean that the Definitive Edition's new refreshed look is considerably less dramatic than it otherwise might have been. Can you tell which of these screenshots is which?

Screenshot from Stronghold HD, showing a castle in the middle of greenery.
Screenshot from Stronghold: Definitive Edition, showing a castle in the middle of greenery.
Answer: Stronghold HD is on the left, and Definitive Edition on the rightImage credit: FireFly Studios

That first HD re-release happily retained the original's great offence and defence tug of war, as Nate Crowley (RPS in peace) named it one of the best base building games on PC. He explained that "it's Helm's Deep with stiffly-animated knights instead of orcs, and there's a lot of fun to be had in working out where to put your curtain walls, siege weapons, and nightmarish fire traps."

Stronghold: Definitive Edition marches to release on November 7th, and you can find more screenshots on Steam. Or you could grab Stronghold HD now for only £3.50/$6 from Steam or GOG.

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