Here's an hour of castle building gameplay in Stronghold: Warlords

By Ian Boudreau 22 Jun 2020 0

Firefly Studios' Aaron Hayden has a nice new Stronghold: Warlords video up that provides a look at how settlement building works in the game. While this Stronghold moves the action to Asia, long-time fans should be pleased to see how faithfully it's reproducing classic Stronghold systems in the new setting and 3D.

The video, which you can view below, runs just shy of an hour, so rather than bouncing from feature to feature, this is a chance to see pure, uncut gameplay. It's meant to focus on free build mode, so we do see quite a bit of the economic and military buildings available in Warlords, but there are occasional incursions by enemy forces, so Hayden has a chance to show off his castle defences as well.

That's a chance to demonstrate the potential of gunpowder, too: Hayden sets up a series of barricades to funnel attacking troops into a couple channels, 'guiding' them across places gunpowder stockpiles on the ground. As troops and catapults cross over these, a keen-eyed archer on the nearby castle walls fires a flaming arrow into the stockpile, igniting a satisfying conflagration.

The mode may be called free build, but it does feature a series of sieges to keep the pressure going, and the video takes us all the way up to the final siege on Day 45. Things get fairly chaotic during this battle, with both sides firing off rocket volleys, fire arrows, and pyroclastic catapult missiles.

The fire looks good, and even with the shift to 3D and feudal Asia, there's a clear visual continuity with the classic Stronghold games - I'm particularly struck by the arrow flight paths, which look astonishingly true to old Strongholds. Stronghold: Warlords is due to launch September 29, but you can play the free demo right now.

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